Proletarians of all countries, uníte!




Central Committee
Communist Party of Peru

Red Banner

translated and reproduced by the

[Prepared for the Internet by the Magazine Red Sun]





As the recent Session of the Central Committee, celebrating the victorious 10th ANNIVERSARY OF THE PEOPLE'S WAR, concluded, Peruvian reaction and its master, Imperialism, mainly Yankee imperialism, needs to reinvigorate bureaucratic capitalism, once again restructure the old State, and annihilate the People's War. Those are their needs and their dreams because bureaucratic capitalism is experiencing its most profound economic crisis up to now, sinking the whole of Peruvian society into its deepest crisis ever. Its state, the obsolete dictatorship of the big bourgeoisie and landowners, restructured in 1978 for the third time this century, is still a rotten military- bureaucratic machine, more oppressive and bloody, the more impotent it becomes with the development of the People's War. Because the People's War, over these ten victorious years, mainly supported by the masses of poor peasants and under the leadership of the Party, has achieved the really thrilling prospect of conquering power throughout the country for the proletariat and the people. Reaction and the imperialists design new plans and actions, which inevitably will give more momentum to the class struggle, developing the struggle of the masses and raising the People's War to its highest expression.

The above is happening at a time when the superpowers and the powers, all of them imperialist or social-imperialist, in collusion and contention, stir up the contradictions on a global level (oppressed nations versus superpowers and imperialist powers; superpowers versus themselves and other imperialist powers; and the bourgeoisie versus the proletariat; of the three, the first is the principal contradiction); thus developing collusion and contention for areas of domination and a new partition of the world, which entails new defined wars, regional and worldwide in perspective, despite all the sweet talk about pacifism aimed at once more stupefying the world. Within these circumstances, from the middle of the last decade, a new counterrevolutionary revisionist offensive is developing led mainly by Gorbachov and Teng Xiao-ping (Deng). This offensive has intensified lately, and is acting colluded with the imperialist offensive against Marxism, loudly voiced again the presumed and widely publicized "obsolescence of Marxism." Thus, the collusion and contention of both imperialism and revisionism, and in this case mainly the collusion, are clearly seen in their sinister attacks against Marxism-Leninism- Maoism. Under international conditions in which revolutionary struggles, and increasingly the People's War acquires greater transcendence in the oppressed nations, they become the base of the world proletarian revolution as the main tendency in world history. This is a complex reality materialized in facts as it is happening in the country, like Eastern Europe with its contention between the decomposition of revisionism and the scramble for imperialist spoils, or Nicaragua whose incomplete democratic revolution has wrecked in the waters of black prospects, or the dialogue of M-19 in Colombia, with such instructive results, to name just a few.

Finally, there is the so-called "legitimization" as a political objective of the counterinsurgency war, in its form known as "low intensity warfare," which seeks governments produced by elections as a mean of providing them with "legitimacy" and "authority," which should be recognized as such by the people. In addition, according to them, they would "serve to satisfy the needs of the people." In that way, elections are but a tool of the counterrevolutionary war.

All this makes the 1990 general elections vital to the interests of Peruvian reaction and imperialism, mainly Yankee imperialism.


In, "Against Constitutionalist Illusions and for the State of a New Democracy," the Party said:

"ON THE ELECTIONS. Marx pointed out: 'Every few years the oppressed are authorized to decide which members of the oppressor class will represent and crush them in parliament!' And that is even more true when the elections are to approve constitutions. Thus, elections are merely the method to renew the government administration of the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie in capitalist societies, and this happens even in the most democratic government we could imagine, and they are the usual means to preserve and develop capitalism.

In the landowning-bureaucratic States of Latin America, when elections have fulfilled their function of a changing of the guard, and at times during which the electoral norms of the bourgeois-democratic system are respected, election is just a tool of domination by the semi-feudal landowners and big capitalists, whether the renewal is done at standardized periods as lately in Colombia, or to end a period of military rule as also lately happened in Argentina, these are few examples of many in which our America is so prolific.

"The above can be demonstrated for this country. Although with important interruptions to the periodic electoral processes by military rulers -interruptions linked on the one hand to the development of the People's War and, on the other, to the contradictions between the landowners and the big bourgeoisie, and between the comprador bourgeoisie and the democratic bourgeoisie. Highlighting that the military governments themselves have been instrumental in implementing elections, be it to legalize its own situation, or to end its rule, or to guarantee them- elections in Peru have helped to preserve or develop the character of Peruvian State, the formal republic, the dictatorship of the semi-feudal landowners and the big bourgeoisie. Thus, elections have been, as couldn't be otherwise within the established social order, a tool first in the hands of the comprador bourgeoisie and then in the hands of the bureaucratic bourgeoisie. This has been the main characteristic in the electoral processes of the Peruvian State during this century, which has determined the class character of elections in this country.

"These fundamental matters establish the following:

  • 1. The Peruvian State is landowning-bureaucratic, a dictatorship of a feudal landowners and big bourgeoisie, under ultimate control by Yankee imperialism; against whom the people struggle for the construction of a State of new democracy, which requires the destruction of the existing old order.
  • 2. The Peruvian State, like every State, sustains, defends and develops itself by the use of violence, in the face of which the people need revolutionary violence, following the road of surrounding the cities from the countryside.
  • 3. The elections are means of domination by the landowners and big bourgeoisie.

For the people they are neither instruments of transformation nor a means to overthrow the power of the current rulers. Therefore, the correct orientation is using them only as a means of agitation and propaganda."

That was said in 1978 and it is still valid. Let's point out that the elections of 1980 and 1985 proved it with facts. Thus, within this function of elections in Peru, similar to that of other countries, and being as they are crucial to reaction, the 1990 general elections showed and developed themselves in defense of the obsolete existing order and evolution of Peruvian society. It was in this context that parties like APRA, IS (Socialist Left), IU (United Left), FREDEMO and CAMBIO 90 sustained and defended very similar objectives and goals which only differ in form and means of utilization.

The mobilization of troops for the elections amounted to 300,000 members of the police and armed forces, the largest ever for an election, as the State itself has recognized. In addition, they added tension and put into motion all State institutions; they unleashed an all-out campaign aimed not just at capitalizing votes but to pressure the people into voting and fighting against the People's War; all of that besides the most vile and low demagoguery. Let's highlight clearly how the open intervention by the Catholic Church in Peruvian politics is increasing by the day, as shown in these elections; but at the same time we must see with concern the role of the evangelicals in these elections, and behind which is the invisible hand of Yankee imperialism. Thus, while the armed force is still the big elector and warrantor, the so-called "spiritual power" of the Church rises more and more as political power. These elections show more clearly than others held previously in the country that "everything is valid in order to win elections," and how reactionaries, in their own intestine fights, are capable of snatching from the rest of the pack the best parts in the interests of their own groups or factions. So, what would they not do in their struggle against the people and the revolution? The current general elections have set on their way two additional reactionary offspring: racism and religious struggle. The first is a nefarious fly-by-night ideology of purported superiority, which are totally opposed to the forging of a nationality in formation like ours, and the second, the religious struggle, is a sinister utilization of religion not just as an instrument in the class struggle, which it really is, but to pit masses against masses, derail the people's struggle and fetter the advancing revolution, the People's War. But not only have those foul elements been put into motion; the reaction and the classes, factions and groups that compose it, maneuver perversely with the threat of a coup d'etat, its useful instrument, while cynically declaiming themselves in favor of bourgeois democracy. All that, in addition to well- known machinations, tricks, chicanery and fraud at the vote counting, take place along with repression and genocide in the countryside. In that manner the electoral process smells of the dense foul odors of fascism.

Based on the review of data from the "Total compilation of the April 14 general elections," by the National Board of Elections and of the "National Consolidated Presidential Results" published by the same body (JNE) on May 11, 1985, the results are shown below as well as others in which we will refer to later on:

Registered Voters 9,983,400
Not Voting 2,116,600
Voting 7,866,800

The table shows that those not voting are 21.2 % of the registered and 27% of those voting.

CAMBIO 90 (Fujimori) 24.6
APRA 19.1
IU (United Left) 6.9
IS (Socialist Left) 4.0
Others 2.2
Null and Blank 15.3

The very low vote obtained by the first two candidates stands out. Neither one of them, Vargas Llosa or Fujimori, reached even 30% of the votes cast; very far, then, from the 50% plus one votes their constitution demands to assume the presidency. It was also very clear, and we will return to it later on, that absenteeism, simply staying away from the polls, has increased noticeably, reaching 21.2% of the registered and 27% of the voters; that is, the highest vote getter only obtained 0.6% more than absenteeism. There you see the self-proclaimed triumph of the so-called "democracy" and their purported defeat of the so-called "terrorism!"

The 19% APRA vote implied the bankruptcy of their "traditional third," which they bragged about for decades; however, their parliamentary contingent allowed them to continue fulfilling their nefarious role in Peruvian history.

On another side, the self-proclaimed "United Left" and "Socialist Left" were crushed by the same electoral process they worship so much; together, the two of them didn't even match the number of null and blank votes. This, their unrestrained parliamentary cretinism has suffered its most humiliating and catastrophic defeat: the just punishment to revisionists, opportunists and traitors to the class and the people.

In synthesis, last April's general elections were earmarked by vote dispersal and indefiniteness; the runoff election showed itself up as a still more murky, ambiguous and demagogic contest of gambling political hacks. But, besides that, with the distribution of seats, in parliament will develop a worsening collusion and contention between the various groups and factions of exploiters, causing the decrepit parliamentary system to rot even more. All of this shows how the Peruvian State has further weakened at its base, and will have to be sustained once more by the armed and repressive forces, showing more clearly to the people how the armed forces are the backbone of the State, and how this State is merely based on an organized violence for perpetuating the slavery of the people of Peru.

The electoral process highlights fundamental problems in Peruvian society, despite the pretensions of covering them up: First, the subsistence of semi-feudalism, basis of the agricultural production crisis, bringing back to the forefront the land problem which supposedly had been overcome. Second, the existence of bureaucratic capitalism, which is sustained in economic underdevelopment tied to imperialist domination; imperialism, mainly Yankee, as always sucking us dry of our blood and getting ready to suck us drier yet. In synthesis, it shows the generalized crisis of an obsolete society having only one solution: revolution, the victory of the ongoing People's War. On the other hand, the disastrous result obtained by the APRA government headed by the genocidal demagogue Garcia Perez, is evident. In 1985, we said that the new government would provoke more hunger and would be still more genocidal; today hunger eats away and devours the class and the people; and while according to data from the so-called "Pacification Commission" of the Senate, the Belaunde government bloodied the country with 5,880 dead, the current one surpassed it with 8,504 dead from 1985 to 88, and with another 3,198 dead in 1989. Both of our 1985 predictions were correct, and in fact the APRA government of Garcia Perez created more hunger and more genocide than any previous one in Peruvian history The people will never forget him! All of which is sharpened and accented even more by the uncertainty of the first round of the election and the postponement of the resolution until the runoff.

The political parties were strongly shaken by the results of last April's elections and were forced out of necessity to enter all sorts of realignments and regrouping, not just for the sake of the runoff but, mainly, for their later development. While in the electoral campaign they upheld "non partisanship," to lure the vote of the independents, candidates trafficked with the lack of prestige of their own political parties and the repudiation of the revisionist parties of Eastern Europe, aiming in essence and perspective, against the party of the proletariat, against the Party, preaching the putrid thesis of "no need for political parties." On this, let's remember what Lenin said:

"Non partisanship is a bourgeois idea. Partisanship is a socialist idea." (Read communist.) All that merely shows is the crisis of the parties which sustain the old order; not a new crisis, but now sharpened by the electoral process and its disastrous results; a crisis of the parties which obviously reflects the deterioration of the old Peruvian State.

The first go around left two candidates. One, tired and in bad shape, Vargas Llosa, of FREDEMO, the arrogant preacher of the upstart personal success, individual freedom and the market economy, triumphant after having obtained first place with a meager 27% of the vote. The other, catapulted and infatuated, Fujimori of CAMBIO 90, the treacherous and sneaky carrier of the vaunted "Honesty, Work and Technology," the dark horse of imperialism and reaction who obtained a second place with 24% of the vote. Both represent the big bourgeoisie and imperialism. In the case of Fredemo the matter is clear. However in the case of Cambio 90 confusion arises because of the class origins of their candidates, from the petty-bourgeoisie and medium bourgeoisie, and by hiding their pragmatic points, especially before the first run. But what have Fujimori himself, and his advisors now preparing his government program, promised: a market economy, not even a "social market economy"; to recognize the foreign debt and find ways to pay it; to strengthen the banking system; to promote exports and even big mining interests; to promote foreign investments and so-called international "assistance." Those are all positions of the great bourgeoisie, and especially of one of its factions, the comprador bourgeoisie, which will benefit the most. In addition, most of his advisors were formed by imperialism and are linked to big bourgeois institutions, opportunists who had participated in the APRA government, in IU, or coming from the Velasco regime. Of notice are the links with Hernando de Soto, a character with strong links to Yankee imperialism, directly endorsed by Reagan and Bush and a researcher of the so-called "informal production" with which all now pretend to traffic, even Vargas Llosa and Fujimori themselves.

So both Fredemo and Cambio 90 represent politically the big bourgeoisie. Already the recent Central Committee session pointed out: "Cambio 9O, that movement led by the former rector of the Agrarian University (Fujimori) has the same positions but not the weight of Fredemo . . . " The assessment of its class character is correct, however its definitive weight depends on the runoff election, given the importance of the Presidential elections. The heart of the matter is, while both are focused on the interests of the comprador bourgeoisie, Vargas Llosa presents himself as a defender of the exclusive interests of that faction, while Fujimori presents himself as a defender of the interests of the entire big bourgeoisie, but in addition, demagogically, he also claims to defend the interests of the medium bourgeoisie and the people. Although they try to deny it, that is the class character of the positions of both candidates, who lead Fredemo and Cambio 90 like "caciques" . Vargas Llosa desperately tries to overcome that limitation by appealing to all the people and promoting projects such us his so-called "social support program," while Fujimori assembles and reassembles his plans and keeps knocking on doors in search of connections and equipment for his possible future government.

In these circumstances the runoff election is prepared, in which APRA, IU and IS and their groups and factions play up to the highest bidder, leaning more and more toward Fujimori, and APRA looking for important posts in the new government. It already presented its detailed "conditions" to support Cambio 90, with phrasemongering to justify their "principles," while the poor orphan "Socialist Left" (IS) begs for crumbs off the big boys' table.

With all that, the basis on how the next government will look like, are being set. Whoever wins, it will govern in the midst of contradictions, with collusion and contention in the heart reaction and its lackeys.


Once more the "defeat of terrorism" is preached to the four corners of the world: from the genocidal demagogue Garcia Perez, to the various self-proclaimed and well paid "senderologists"; and from the political parties of reaction and their flunkies, to the bloody police forces; from the muddled and desperate presidential candidates, to well-maintained hacks of all sorts; in unison, as should be expected, all shout at the top of their lungs the purported and worn out '' defeat of Sendero," so they, in defense of Peruvian reaction and especially of the big bourgeoisie, of social-imperialism and of imperialism, mainly Yankee can create counterrevolutionary public opinion for the benefit of the Old State and the armed forces' counterinsurgency plans. Once more their cruel black dream of forever crushing the people and annihilating the People's War sets in motion the fraud of the "defeat of Sendero, "which will materialize, they claim without proof, as ghosts labeled "strategic failure," or "the first and foremost loser," and "split and surrender" of Sendero. As their notorious wishful thinking prays, the Peoples' War "got into the swamp" in 1989, the elections would show the great defeat of the boycott, and the Party would split, and the fighters of the People's Army of Liberation would surrender.

Let's begin with the so-called "strategic failure" due to "Sendero's falling into a swamp in 1989." Nothing better than starting from the Report on "Great Fulfillment of the Pilot Plan!", presented to the Central committee in June of last year, one of whose parts we transcribe below:



"The process of forging and development of nine years of People's War contains four milestones:

  • 1. Definition,
  • 2. Preparation,
  • 3. Beginning and,
  • 4. Development;

The People's War, strictly, speaking has developed as a process of qualitative leaps by means of four plans up to now. Each plan is a more higher and comprehensive than the previous plan expressing thus how the People's War has been getting more complex.

1. THE BEGINNING PLAN, fulfilled by way of two sub plans, spans less than a year: a) from May to July of 1980, 280 actions were completed. That was the beginning; and, b) from July to December of 1980, driving forward the People's War, fulfilling 1,062 actions. We already notice a leap, a growth, and the time also was longer: in total 1,342 actions.

2. THE DEPLOYMENT PLAN was broader yet, the plans spanning longer periods and consisting of more campaigns. Deployment had a previous plan: Opening up guerrilla zones, and developing platoons and detachments leading to Bases of support. Since the objective was to unfold the war fanning throughout the country, three campaigns were conceived:

  • a. Conquering weapons and resources,
  • b. Shaking up the countryside with guerrilla actions,
  • c. Scouting for the advance toward Bases of support, this last was applied in two stages. It spanned two years and carried out 5,350 actions.

While the earlier plan initiated the armed struggle, this new phase generated the New Power. By the end of this plan, the armed forces entered directly to fight us (December of 82). This plan was more complex: several campaigns began to be managed as part of the same plan, each campaign marked by the definition of political strategy and military strategy.

3. PLAN OF CONQUERING BASES, from May 1983 to September of 86. First two campaigns were unfolded: Defend, Develop and Construct precisely in 1983-84, which was the most difficult moment; the armed forces were stopped short by those campaigns. This third plan developed a Campaign of great importance with a sub plan, The Great Leap, which meant largely overcoming the problems, and expanding the theater of military and political operations from Cajamarca to Puno, centered in the mountains but also spanning the Jungle and the Coast. By then, too, reaction thought they had annihilated us and swept away the People's War.

The plan of Conquering Bases took three years, four months, and consisted of 28,621 actions; it provided support bases and the entire support system, guerrilla zones, zones of operation and points of action.

4. GREAT PLAN OF DEVELOPING BASES (GPDB), with this we entered a very transcendental process because the support bases are the core of the People's War, there is no People's War without support bases; the Central Committee decided to apply the plan first as a Pilot Plan, from December 1986 to May 89, 2 years eight months more or less, with three campaigns, the third one in two parts; it consisted of 63,052 actions; it showed its merits and exceeded the objectives, now we begin its definitive approval.

Thus, we have in nine years a total of 98,365 actions; counting the complementary actions there were more than 100,000; mainly, the great final conclusion completed in July, as a second special ending.

The plans are strategically centralized and tactically decentralized; they are strategic plans that include actions and construction; they are developed through campaigns. Later the plan begin to be more complex and of longer duration; later still sub plans are developed, or limited plans developed within the general plans; and finally on entering into the GPDB, we propose applying it as a pilot plan. Each plan has its political and military strategy. They are tested and implemented in battle; the results show the readjustments to be made, and above all the subsequent conditions for the success of the subsequent plan. We concretize our judgement of the results in clear phrases that allow us to wield them easily, for example: "The Great Completion of the Pilot Plan!"

The Central Committee approves Strategic Operating plans; such as the 1979 Expanded National Conference agreed upon, strategically centralized plans, which also takes into consideration the operational situation and establish the four forms of struggle:

  • 1. agitation and propaganda,
  • 2. sabotage,
  • 3. selective annihilation and,
  • 4. guerrilla combat.

They determine the parts, establish periods and fix the chronology.

We must always pay close attention to strategic centralization, since that's what determines our ability to within the plan and to develop the revolutionary waves systematically and simultaneously hit diverse and broad areas with all possible forms and means, to deliver hard and serious defeats to the enemy. Those who have studied the principles and military theory of Chairman Mao always point out that he established a strategically centralized plan, a key point that allows us to develop the actions: Applying it has enabled us to deliver hard and simultaneous blows to the enemy in almost the entire country, thus causing them more difficulties.

We must insist on strategically centralized plans, without forgetting they are tactically decentralized. Apply Strategic Operating Plans because these establish the nexus between strategy and tactics. Already comrade Stalin had suggested visualizing the bond joining the strategic whole with the concrete actions.

Let's point out how we began "out of nothing," because that is how Chairman Mao taught us. The main thing is to have a Party with a correct and just line, then the problem is to begin. Since the problem is not how many we are but is rather, if we want to initiate the armed struggle or not. With the People's War we have developed the Party, built the People's Guerrilla Army (today the People's Army of Liberation) and molded the New Power, and our mass work has experienced great quantitative and qualitative leaps; we have been wresting the weapons away from the enemy and the transfer of modern weapons is taking place more often.

The People's War has brought us to the Grand Completion of the Pilot Plan, which we finished successfully and brilliantly! Thus, we have exceeded the accomplishment of the Pilot Plan of the Great Plan to Develop Bases; from that derives the need to Drive Forward the Support Bases. If we had not conceived it that way, it would not have the sense of having been completed. It began as pilot plan because this great plan implied very important qualitative changes. It was already proved in practice, its mandatory objective was to proceed with, Drive Forward the Development of Support Bases! , within the new GREAT PLAN OF DEVELOPING BASES TO SERVE THE CONQUEST OF POWER in the entire country.

In nine years we have developed, through these plans, the People's Army and the New Power and we have applied and will insist that the Party leads the People's War and absolutely leads the army, since we are guided by the Party commanding the gun and will never allow the gun to be in command of the Party. We have also insisted that, as Chairman Mao taught us, the war follows the politics; we will follow Lenin: War is the continuation of politics by military means; it has been and will continue to be that way, therefrom derives the class character of war. When Marxism is negated by others, we communists have to reaffirm ourselves more in our principles. When we confront counterrevolutionary campaigns like those worldwide against Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, like those in our country against the Party and the People's War, those are the moments we must grasp our principles more firmly and visualize the undeclinable objective toward which we are going: Communism. Let's insist on this more today, when Gorbachev, Deng and their cronies spread that we can no longer understand war with criteria from the past, that we can no longer say war is the continuation of politics; that what Clausewitz set forth, to which Lenin agreed and Chairman Mao developed, is not a principle that applies today according to Gorbachev, who also cries out loud that war will take us to the disappearance of the human race, that war will have neither winners nor losers because no one will survive it: sinister positions he inherited from Khrushchev. We condemn, and mark with fire, those revisionist positions against the People's War; we reaffirm ourselves that People's War is the continuation of politics by the force of arms in the service of the proletariat and the people, of their interests. If we were not firm in our principles and flexible in their application we'd lose the direction of the people's war and crash down into revisionism. That's why we must persist in Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, Gonzalo Thought, in the people's war and in the Communist Party leading it until Communism.

Furthermore, let's emphasize:

  • 1. centralization;
  • 2. more complex plan;
  • 3. the new, Great Plan of Developing Bases to Serve the Conquest of Power in All the Country! ; and,
  • 4. persisting in the principles of People's War.


The Pilot Plan was successfully completed in three campaigns. The second part of the third campaign, Grand Completion of the Pilot Plan! , Whose balance we areevaluating, materialized an increment of 172% compared to the first part, a very noticeable increase even if the second part lasted longer than the first. In nine years of People's War there were 100,000 actions, this figure does not include complementary actions.

The total number of actions of the, Grand Completion of the Pilot Plan! Was 32,646 and the third campaign, in its two parts, shows an immense jump relative to the second campaign of the Pilot Plan, since it quadruples it despite lasting only three more months; there we have one of the extraordinary results of the First Congress of the Party.


It's one of the four forms of People's War and, consequently, it is erroneous to see it as a separate thing; not to see it as a form of war leads us to make mistakes. The main thing is to develop it as the most profound campaign of agitation and propaganda ever made by any party in the country; that is, propaganda as the diffusion of ideas aiming toward the objective, and agitation as the utilization of concrete problems, which the masses struggle through. These actions, like the other forms, spread revolution, People's War, politics, ideology; today they disseminate the need to conquer Power countrywide. Thus, we go down to the lowest masses, who normally can neither read nor write; Engels taught us to solidify with facts the ideas in the minds of men, as a matter of principle; it is the material fact that generates knowledge; the four forms of war are material facts that those who execute them, or experience them, militants, fighters and masses, go on enduring the effect and the confirmation of the need for the war, for conquering political objectives, for conquering Power; of the need for the ideology of the proletariat. Thus, agitation and propaganda deepen among the masses of the country, stir the mind, disseminate and go on confirming the need for revolution; they deal with the real source of knowledge. Agitation and propaganda develop as psychological action and psychological warfare.

Lenin said that propaganda is never lost, no matter how much time there is between the sowing and the reaping, and if the action is done with weapons in hand, with armed actions aimed at mobilizing the masses, that is the best school to forge the people in the ideology of the proletariat, in the politics of the Party and in the need for the People's War to conquer Power. Let's consider its great importance: it is linked to winning over and to forming public opinion to the fact that the People's War goes on generating a spirit of transformation among the masses, as Tulio C. Guerrero says. It has much potential to disseminate the People's War, and is fundamental to generate public opinion, to accentuate the People's War, the political objectives, the conquest of Power, Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, Gonzalo Thought, the ideology, the politics of the Party and the policies on different levels, and we must keep in mind that we cannot conquer Power without generating public opinion.


They continue to play an important role, hitting the Peruvian economy hard, which develops itself in the worst conditions, in the deepest crisis in our history. Sabotaging the mining sector that has transcendent importance because the largest percentage of convertible currency comes from this activity; it hits the Peruvian State directly because, besides creating problems for it, those are blows it receives in the economic activity of the State, for instance Centromin It creates problems for the State itself, we burden with debt their corporative plans, which are fouled up. Furthermore, their "social measures," which they must always recur, are also hit and so the counterrevolutionary armed action itself is weakened. The sabotage of the electrical network is very important; the last few blackouts affected nine departments, from the northern Department La Libertad to the southern Department of ICA and going through the nation's capital, going inside the departments of Jun¡n, Pasco, Hu nuco, Ayacucho, Huancavelica, the heart of their economic system, the very axis of their administrative system, which is the capital. The blackouts are generating more problems for them each time. The paper El Comercio published about the last blackout that electricity could only be restored in Lima 10 days afterward. They have implied that they intend to utilize more thermal generators, a greater expense because the cost to produce that type of energy is very high. Besides hitting the public administration and their banking system data processing, industry also experiences difficulties. They greatly impact on the masses because whoever sees the blackout knows what its cause is, and the masses see how the Peruvian State, expressing its class character, tends first to the needs of the big bourgeoisie and postpones those of the people; that way, the masses are gradually forging clearer judgement each time. The big bourgeoisie suffers with the sabotages, hence the Society of Mines and Petroleum demand that armed forces and police reinforce the military occupation in the mines.

The main thing is to let the effects of sabotage be felt in the most important, most advanced economic zone, in the central economic zone which at the same time is the most strategic zone to restructure the old Peruvian society, their old State.


It is increasing and hitting hard the authorities. We reaffirm that this way the functioning of the State apparatus is beheaded and paralyzed. Some, the reactionaries and their cronies the opportunists, say "how is it possible to vilely murder mayors elected by the people?" First, it must be explained that the election is only a reactionary instrument of the bourgeois democratic system. We will never allow ourselves to be deceived by the political stupidity of those who only speak of dictatorship if there are no elections. United Left (IU) and their ilk may say such things; but a communist can never think that way since the State, first and foremost, is a class dictatorship, and the mayors, the governors, or the bureaucratic authorities, of the CORDES or similar organizations, are part of that State system, of that violent reactionary structure. Hitting or beheading State authorities or bureaucrats of whatever level hampers the running of the State and even more generates a Power vacuum. One of the traditional problems of the Peruvian State, as Mariategui already noted, is that it has never been able to extend its power to the remotest corners of the country; it is a fact that reaction is sited in central locations, in the cities, and has been extending its power to intermediate size cities, and once in a while it reaches small cities; while the annexes or towns in the countryside, villages or shantytowns are beyond the State and do not endure steady control; it is a problem linked to the semi-feudal bases sustaining it. So, then, the annihilations undermine the State order and that is good. It helps to erode it, because the political vacuum created is left in our hands, to fill it and exert power. Having five forms of Power we can set up any one of them. Remember that some say, "the Vietnam example is good," but they forget 13,000 authorities were annihilated there; thus, the annihilations made by the Vietnamese were good, but the ones we make are bad? Why? What objectives did they accomplish and do we accomplish? To undermine order, a problem clearly established by Cassinello in Guerrilla and Counter guerrilla Warfare .


The quantity is high and its percentage begins to grow even more. The two fundamental forms of combat actions are developing:

  • 1) ambushes and
  • 2. assaults.

Ambushes are developed, each time more stunningly and we are hitting the armed forces; to hit their officers has much importance and we already see its results: petitions to leave the army are growing so much that they had to prohibit them; desertions increase and clashes among them are starting; the selling of weapons is increasing and will continue to grow.

On this point reaction reaches the extremes of sarcasm, stupidity and ridicule by decrying we are "cowardly ambushing them," "they don't fight face to face." In what ambush does one show the face? The key to ambush is surprise. Ambush is a norm to us, as it is to all armies, but we should not allow ourselves to be ambushed nor counter ambushed. When we hit the military, they cry out, "Barbaric! ," "Brutal murder!"; so then, how do they say "we are at war" and what role do their armed forces have other than to fight in a war? Mercado Jarrin says the armed forces are the "insurance policy of the nation"; yes, they are the insurance policy of reaction and its backbone; that is why we have to annihilate them totally and completely.

Guerrilla combat, like annihilations, are lowering the morale of the armed forces, which are drafted troops fighting against their will, with little instruction and kept in check by ferocious reactionary iron discipline. Some say they would rather have a more reduced professional army, better armed with sophisticated weapons and very well paid, but that would not be beneficial to them, it would only allow us to increase our forces and make more critical the disproportionate ratio between us and them; as is well known, the norm is that when a guerrilla activity is well developed, reaction requires a ratio of up to 20 to one, as shown by international experience; in our case, although we are not highly developed, they need to increase their forces. In second place, can they do it? , No. They do not possess enough means to do it, officers themselves are badly paid and the severe crisis the country is experiencing does not permit great investments like that, consequently they need the "foreign aid" of the superpowers and/or imperialist powers and to them they appeal more and more. The USSR just sold them helicopters from Afghanistan at bargain prices. The USA gives them "military aid," training and giving them resources, and their direct participation is obvious, such as the struggle against "drug trafficking" in words and against the People's War in deeds. Keep in mind what we have seen already about a possible Yankee aggression, considering especially the U.S. actions in Huallaga; remember what we read in the military magazine of the U.S. army about national strategy, it maintains that even not having a declared war, they develop subversive wars, insurrections, terrorist actions, drug trafficking and that those are areas in which the armed forces must participate and fight.

Thus, they are finding serious problems with the development of the guerrilla combat. As regards quality, we are seeing a leap especially in the guerrilla combats; each time the assaults are more important, an example is Uchiza , which even caused the enemy internal contradictions between the armed forces and the government, and between the armed forces and police forces; and successive ambushes show a better handling of them.


It is a new modality in the struggle, which implies an entire combination of actions, it has to manage the four forms of war: agitation and propaganda, sabotage, selective annihilation and guerrilla combat; and at the same time it implies mobilizing an enormous mass which helps the force of the New Power, the existence of the New State and the questioning and negation of the old State. The armed strike, militarily speaking, manages the four forms and impacts on huge numbers of masses leading to isolating vast areas and demonstrating besides how easy it is to isolate the capital city (Lima). Since 1979 we know that Lima is the most vulnerable capital in Latin America, keep that in mind to continue hitting them, and for tomorrow, when we have Power in the whole country, we will defend it from counterrevolution.

Confronted with armed strikes reaction will aim, as it does, to fetter them and prevent them, to break them up; it will make false calls to strike or will use its weapons; for instance in Chosica they called a false strike just to make a show of force, to pressure, intimidate and lead the masses to reject the strike; but that will not be enough for them, they will have to repress the armed strikes, answer them militarily, not merely as a show of force, but to break the actual armed strikes with fire and blood.

Armed strikes are also making the revisionists nervous, the trade union bureaucracy, all those who ride on the backs of the masses; these hacks will continue opposing the armed strikes claiming these are "an authoritarian imposition," that "the unions are not the ones calling them." Our answer is simple: it is not an industrial or trade union action but a military action to keep on isolating, hitting, eroding and undermining the old order so the people can see clearer each time the powerlessness, which the Peruvian State is being reduced to. Therefore, we are not talking only about a struggle for labor demands or just vindications, but rather we are developing a military action to undermine the old order, show its impotency, create public opinion and impact the broader masses; and that, in perspective, entails the sectionalizing of the country in a more extensive way, which will involve another problem of the plan we put in motion: the leap from guerrilla warfare to mobile warfare.

Military work develops in the country and the city following the path of surrounding the cities from the countryside, and our specific condition is that we also shake up the cities, but the four forms of war develop mainly in the countryside, and as complement in the cities. That scheme will continue to develop more, considering that the armed strike happens above all in the cities; for example the armed strike in Central Peru involving important cities like Huancayo, Jauja, Oroya, Huanuco, Cerro de Pasco; that is, departmental and provincial capitals. Work in the countryside is good, extremely important and principal, but advancing the work in the cities is a necessity that will increase and we must focused on that type of work.

In synthesis, as regards quality and quantity we can say that qualitatively and quantitatively the People's War is developing strongly and vigorously; we persist on the road of surrounding the cities from the countryside; the countryside is principal and the encirclements are already closing in more and more. Therefore, the People's War has made a great quantitative and qualitative leap in this Pilot Plan and it germinates a more transcendent advance.


Our investigation shows that everything remains firmly grounded within the main points (the axis, sub axis, directions and mobile lines), they are well established and are being managed even better. What derives from this is that at this moment we have no need to change things; it would even be inconvenient to alter them at this time. Reaction enters into strong difficulties and contradictions; the problem of the municipal and general elections, the two electoral runs and the new administration take them to a collusion and contention; but each collusion is sustained within the contention and can explode at any time; these situations, of contention, of rupture, that can even lead to a coup d'etat at least in the next two years that must lead us to advance boldly. For that reason it is not convenient to vary our plans and we must strive to wield them better. Don't forget that all of our Party's work is developed within the strategic development plan, provided that the Party leads everything.


It remains even clearer that we are developing within the Sierra region of the country. Historically Peru has had a vertebrate axis: the center-south mountains, it was that way at the times of the Incas; in the war with Chile it was the area defending itself better and where forces can retreat before a foreign attack.

We also develop within the jungle strips, areas which are showing good fighting conditions for the masses; most peasants there are linked to coca growing, the Upper Huallaga is the largest producing area in Latin America, larger than those in Colombia and Bolivia; for that reason as well it is important to reaction. We are also developing within the Apurimac jungle strip and we must emphasize our penetration into the Central region. The perspective is to cover all the jungle strips.

The theater is also being extended on the Coast. From the edges of the Coastal areas, you can penetrate into the Sierra, for example the mid-North (Norte medio) and the Mid- South.

This leads us to develop the other coastal zones, especially the work in the northern and southern coast of our country. Also, to develop more the cities in the Sierra. It is very important to focus the struggle in the cities, it has to do with the insurrection; if we don't prepare for the seizure of the cities, mainly the largest ones, to complete the final stage of the People's War, the conquest of power in the entire country will be delayed. The work in Lima must be developed more, considering that it is the capital.

Also the theater enables us to develop incursions, which facilitate developing the theater or retreating during enemy offensives.

In synthesis, the theater is showing its expansion and the interrelation between the committees, also the capacity of incursion between the one and the others. Consequently, the perspective of the theater is to vertebrate the entire People's War. With the development of the war, we will have to redefine the committees, above all to conform to the development of the EGP (People's Army.) Thus, the theater shows how it is expanding and we see a process of vertebrate in which the encirclement of the cities is setting in, not just the capital but the rest of the cities too.

This ends the partially transcribed report. But let us consider the following outline:



Initiate the Armed Struggle
Drive Forward Guerrilla Warfare
1, 342 actions


Open Guerrilla Zones
First Campaign: Conquer Arms and Resources
Second Campaign: Rock the Countryside with Guerrilla Actions
Third Campaign: Stir 1 and 2 to Advance Toward the Support Bases
5, 350 actions

Defend Develop and Construct I and II
Great Leap
First Campaign: Initiate Great Leap!
Second Campaign: Develop the Great Leap!
Third Campaign: Develop the People's War!
Fourth Campaign: Cap off the Great Leap! (First Part)
Cap off the Great Leap with a Golden Seal! (Second Part)
28, 621 actions

First Campaign: Pilot Plan to Develop Bases
Second Campaign: To Brilliantly Fullfill it and Establish a Historical Miliestone!
Third Campaign: To consolidate and Develop the Great Completion! (First Part)
Great Completion of the Pilot Plan! (Second Part)
63, 052 actions

First Campaign: To Drive Forward the Development of Support Bases
The partial implementation to the end of 1989.
23, 090 actions

NOTE: Up to this time four milestones have been specified in the development of the People's War: FIRST: DEFINITION, whose center is the IX Plenum of the Central Committee, June of 1979. SECOND: PREPARATION, centered in the Expanded National Conference, November 1979. Furthermore, this table does not include the actions carried out within the complementaries.

This shows clearly the immense progress and great development of the People's War, unless someone tried to sustain the absurd claim that the leap was quantitative, a change, but not qualitative. It is seen clearly and convincingly how each subsequent plan implies a higher leap than the previous one. If we compare plans III and IV, although plan III took three years and four months, and plan IV only took two years and six months, the number of actions in the latter plan more than doubles the former.

On the other hand, if we consider the application of the new GREAT PLAN TO DEVELOP BASES IN SERVICE OF THE CONQUEST OF POWER just begun in August of 1989 with the First Campaign of Driving Forward the Development of Support Bases, in its four months of execution, until the end of last year, it materialized 23,090 guerrilla actions. Consequently, considering that four months is half the duration of the Grand Completion of the Pilot Plan! , The second part of the preceding plan, the new Great Plan has already achieved the notable increase of 41.5 percent in its guerrilla actions; an increase whose importance is better understood if we keep in mind the enormous increment that the completion of the Pilot Plan implied. And if we compare results, the 23,090 guerrilla actions involve 19.0 percent of the total actions up to December of 1989; 23.5% of the actions in the nine years before this plan started and 36.6% of the actions in the entire Pilot Plan. In about four months we achieved almost 37% of what we achieved previously in thirty! There it is, the new Great Plan has begun resolutely and victoriously.

Finally, if we center on 1989, the year of the proclaimed and supposed "swamping"; considering from October 88 to December 89, a period in which 32,644 actions were registered in the completion referred to above and 23,090 in the New Plan, we have a total of 55,736 guerrilla actions; that is about 46% of all the actions completed. There you have the great "defeat of Sendero!"


With regards to concrete actions in this period, we emphasize the following:
Regional armed strike in Ayacucho, lasting one week, in February of 89; while rural nucleations built by the armed forces were destroyed. Harvest [campaign] took place in Huaycan, in the capital itself in the same month: 2,000 people were mobilized with the support of the EGP (People's Army), who annihilated the manager and a foreman of the Fundo under attack; the masses appropriated the produce by sharing it. Assault on the police counterinsurgency base DOES-6 at Uchiza, March 27: the base was taken, the contingent of 48 military surrendered among them 15 wounded, three dead officers and seven police dead. The taking of Pampa Cangallo: in April, the 600 soldiers were kept at bay and unable to leave their barracks while the town remained under the control of the People's Army (EGP). Also in April, mobilization of the Committee of Families of Prisoners of War and Disappeared, in Lima, against the Ministry of Justice, with agitation and sabotage; it kept in check the plans of repression against families, and lawyers and genocide against the prisoners. The same month assaults to police posts in Yauricocha, Upper Lar n and Clemente, in the Mid South.

Regional armed strike in Central Peru, departments of Jun¡n, Cerro de Pasco and Huanuco. On May 10-12 an armed strike took place in Ca¤ete, southern part of the Department of Lima, on June 1-2, and on the 7th, assault against the police station of Ambar, northern part of the Department of Lima. Ambush of a presidential escort transport car, "Jun¡n Hussars," in downtown Lima; 7 soldiers killed and 29 wounded in June 3. In the same month, armed strikes: June 5-7 in Huancavelica; on the 7th in Huaraz; and June 15-20 in Upper Huallaga. June 19, ambush of the army in Aguayt¡a, as part of armed strike: a convoy of six trucks on F. Basadre highway; annihilated were an army major (second chief at Ucayali political-military command), a lieutenant and 14 soldiers, besides 10 wounded, total 26 casualties.

In the month of July, armed strikes: on the 14th in Huamachuco; on the 20th in Lima, against hunger and repression, organized by MRDP [Revolutionary Movement in Defense of the People]; and from July 27-29 in Ayacucho. On the 5th, sabotage of a bus of the Soviets who pillage the country's marine life; 33 wounded; an ambush against a DOES police patrol in Az ngaro, Department of Puno, annihilated a commander, a captain, a lieutenant and three subordinates, on the 6th; assaulted the police station in Pacar n, Ca¤ete; the station was destroyed, the bridge joining Pacaran, in Yauyos, and Huancayo was blown up. The military barracks in Madre Mia was destroyed, 150 soldiers (120 infantry and 30 engineers), in the Upper Huallaga Valley; the assault took place on July 27, on the eve of the "national anniversary": after a pitched battle the People's Guerrilla Army destroyed the reactionary army barracks thoroughly and completely, causing them 64 casualties (39 dead and 25 wounded) and conquered a good quantity of military supplies.

Also in that area, a year ago the police station in Cotahuasi, Department of Arequipa, was assaulted; and the police station at the Huancaray hydroelectric, in Apurimac. As well, in the Department of Huancavelica mesnadas of Pachaclla were annihilated and several towns were taken in the principal axis of the People's War in the region, generating a Power vacuum. And, ambush to army in Milano, Upper Huallaga; assault to police stations in Julcan, in Otuzco, Department of La Libertad, and in Cajacay, Department of Ancash.

Now, if we focus on the People's War according to the regions or zones in which it is developing we have the following scenario, centered on the First Campaign of the plan Driving Forward [Impulsar], opening the new Grand Plan:

AYACUCHO: The Heroic Struggle

If we consider from Pampa Cangallo in the south of the department; in October a series of actions against the armed forces and the micro region were carried out; the main one was the attack and eventual collapse of the barracks in Vilcashuaman, sabotage of State installations, propaganda, agitation and mobilization in the town, which was taken over by the People's Army (EGP); as well, the harassment and collapse hit the anti-guerrilla bases in Pampa Cangallo, Cangallo, Puente Matero, Accomarca, Ocros, Cayara, Hualla, Canaria, Huancapi and Chipao. Because of the large impact on the masses, especially those who under pressure of the military joined the mesnadas, and who have stopped patrolling and standing guard. The army reacted desperately and imposed a curfew, repressing, arresting, shaving heads.

Municipal elections in November were confronted by the new armed strike from the 5th to the 15th, which has proven to be a big weapon to hinder, boycott and impede elections wherever feasible. There were no candidates in Concepcion, Carhuanca, Huambalpa, Andamarca and Cabana; in Huancapi, Mualla, Colca and Cayara nobody knew who the candidates were; in Vilcashuaman all resigned except for a member of United Left while in a showcase of "bourgeois democracy," in Carhuanca and Huambalpa, on the same day as the elections, SIN members captured two peasants at the town square, told them, "You are the candidates! ," and beat them up until they accepted their "candidacy." That is how their "democracy" and their "elections" truly are, the people are witnesses! However their objective failed because most of the population did not vote.

An action related to the elections is the stunning ambush on an army convoy on the 13th, in Andamarca, where 10 soldiers and an official of the electoral jury were annihilated.

And, though partially, the Little March that mobilized hundreds of people armed with various means and carrying red flags with the hammer and sickle, banners and posters about the People's War, traveled through many towns and villages like a little machine sowing the People's War, developing actions and profoundly moving the masses. On the other hand, hard crushing blows are delivered to the recalcitrant black heads who lead the "mesnadas" controlled by the armed forces, as in Huamanquiquia and Sacsamarca, province of Huancasancos. At the same time that the People's War extends to the main part of the Coast by the taking of towns like Ocana and the destruction of the police station, close to the highway to Nazca.

Consider the northern part of the Department of Ayacucho, the provinces of Huamanga, Ruanta and La Mar. The municipal elections obviously carried great importance. In the city of Huanta, the provincial capital, there were no candidates, since all of them quit; in Ayacucho, departmental capital, the candidates quit too, but when the APRA candidate quit (a former Bela£nde man who was unknown in Ayacucho and was not even there on election day) his resignation was not accepted by APRA; when the resignation of the United Left (IU) candidate, violating electoral norms, was withdrawn with the opposition of the rest of his ticket, he persisted in resigning, disowning his candidacy. Applying the boycott, as in other parts, the Party carried out the armed strike on November 11-13, throughout the area; from the 10th, transport was paralyzed by blocking and opening ditches across highways; through radio broadcasts, the masses were even asking for the electoral process to be halted. The armed forces, the police-military command, answered them by applying a 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. curfew; on the day following the attack of the 9th, the simultaneous capture of Ayacucho and Huanta by the People's Army (EGP); the armed forces decreed "a suspension of public activities until the 13th"; making large roundups and threatening arrest and other draconian sanctions to anyone who did not vote, according to the provisions repeatedly broadcasted through the radio.

On the 12th Ayacucho woke up amidst great explosions and under a huge deployment of military and police forces. The genocidal demagogue Garcia Perez came the same day to stage "the triumph of democracy in Ayacucho"; he proffered orders and counter orders as he saw fit, as he does daily; he conducted a rally of Apristas (APRA members), mesnadas (paramilitary peasants) and soldiers dressed in civilian clothes in which very loudly, histrionically and egotistically he announced his personal "victory" and the "defeat of Sendero," the "triumphant and exemplary electoral process" and the "boycott failure." But elections were not held in Huanta nor did Ayacucho elect a mayor, since the "leftism" chosen by some vanished amidst the over two-thirds of blank and null votes, of the small minority who voted at all; that too was the "victory" which United Left celebrated euphorically, loudly shouting "we won at Ayacucho!".

At the end of the counting, even the JNE hacks had to declare the results invalid. In addition, like in 1985, in some places the masses were forced to vote by soldiers and police kicking and hitting them, such as in San Jose; or their electoral books were simply stamped, then soldiers filled in the ballots for them, such as in Pischa and Acocro; while in Llochegua and Churcampa voting simply was done at the military barracks. In Julcamarca the People's Army (EGP) captured the town and after keeping the antiguerrila base at bay burned the municipal council (consejo municipal) and prevented the elections; in Acocro it forced them to be stopped, and the same in Pacaysasa, where soldiers abandoned protection of the tables leaving their lieutenant alone. In synthesis, the boycott was a brilliant political triumph; absenteeism was massive and even the minority who voted, voted mostly in blank or null ballots.

But notwithstanding the importance of the boycott, part of the People's War, a basic question in its development can be seen in the great advancement of work in cities such as Ayacucho and Huanta; the taking of both, by siege, on November 9, applying containment to prevent the police and armed forces from massively leaving their quarters, and forcing the foreign mercenaries to keep away and hide like rats in their nests at the airport, is clear proof of this advance. Also, the incursion into People's Cooperation in Ayacucho, against the Aprista candidate, annihilating his police escort, in October; and the attack on the technical police departmental headquarters annihilating a lieutenant and a corporal and wounding two others, in the same month; or the car bombs, one at the office of the director of education, and the other thirty meters away from the main square (Plaza de Armas), respectively in October and December. However, the main and more transcendent development of the People's War is still in the countryside: the destruction of the mesnadas in five towns and finishing off fifty of their most recalcitrant members; the demolition of the nucleations in Vicus and Huayllay and the annihilation of their black heads, and nucleations organized and sustained by the armed forces against the will of the masses, especially of the poorest peasantry; the ambush against mesnadas in Pichihuilca or to an army truck in Palmapampa, barely three hundred meters from their anti-guerrilla base, in November and December respectively, and repeated hits to the marine infantry, show this in all clarity.

APURIMAC: Area of Intense Confrontation

The Department of APURIMAC too, is an area of hard and intense confrontation. Proof are the sabotages and leveling to the ground of installations, and Town councils, micro regions, "cooperation popular," Entel Peru, Ministry of Agriculture, the electoral registry, Sierra Centro-Sur, military registry, National Bank and TV stations; or the selective annihilations of snitches, infiltrators, cattle rustlers, promoters of the mesnadas and spies; or the assaults, ambushes and multiple confrontations registered. All that, together with hundreds of agitations and mobilizations and dozens of seizure of towns. There the State acts with harsher repression and the police and armed forces become increasingly more bloodthirsty and virulent; one sample of this are the genocidal forays by the army, in this area and in others; one of the most recent, in April, departed from Antabamba province, Department of Apurimac, going all the way to Cusco, plundering, burning and murdering in the peasant communities it overran; it was denounced, in vain as usual, before Congress. But responding to the slaughter, guerrilla actions rose up vigorously, Pushing Forward the People's War in those areas; such as the assault to the Vilcabamba police station, province of Grau, on May 14, 1989, executing in combat a policeman, a lieutenant, wounding several more, and generating a blackout in seven districts; that is the truth and not the deceit (fairy tales) printed by the reactionary press about "15 terrorists were killed in the surroundings of Cotabambas." Or the ambush to the army in Caraybamba, on 5 October 1989, annihilating three soldiers, and one lieutenant and wounding seven soldiers.

Close to that area we have the actions in Caraveli province, Department of Arequipa; and the taking of Caraveli, on December 1, 1989, where two police stations, the military registry, the Bank of the Nation, the electric power plant, a TV antenna and the quarters of the Ministry of Agriculture were sabotaged and destroyed; the old authorities ran away and took refuge in the port of Atico. Also the taking of Pausa, capital of the province of P ucar del Sara-Sara, Department of Ayacucho, on December 2; the masses were mobilized, flags were raised and revolutionary slogans painted; besides the sabotage and burning of the council, police station, electoral registry and quarters of the Ministry of Agriculture, Entel and Center-South Sierra; this stunning blow also helped destroy electoral materials and by doing so elections were crippled in the entire province. And, of course, the just policy of "escape" applied in the Caraveli jail in December, which was easily overrun by the People's Army.

HUANCAVELICA: Place of Devastating Ambushes

Also has to its credit devastating ambushes, on October 23 the combatants handed another blow to the army in Lanchoj; a land mine blew up two trucks in a convoy of three, and after a demolishing attack; and later a violent combat with eight soldiers, who commanded by a lieutenant, remained some distance from the third truck; of those three were annihilated in combat; this convoy was heavily armed since it carried chiefs to their anti-guerrilla bases; as usual, newspapers minimized the facts: "four officers and nine soldiers were annihilated." when in fact we annihilated 36. Add to this action the clashes at Santa Ines and Chupamarca and the harassment at Castrovirreyna, totaling 11 dead. So the reactionary Peruvian army suffered 47 dead, among them 10 officers, not counting the wounded which, obviously, raises the number of casualties. Their furious response, impotent for not being able to hit their ambushers, preys upon the unarmed masses; at Santa Ana, on 25 October, they tortured peasants asking them about the guerrillas and murdering five; in the same place, on the 28th, they burned the hut of a peasant and murdered him for being an uncle of a revolutionary soldier; and in Lachoj, 70 soldiers stationed themselves on the road, on the 28th, stopping anyone coming through, they robbed, tortured and raped women; and on the 31st they murdered four more in Pucara. Here too, the electoral process has been deepened the class struggle; reaction has set up its elections, maintaining them primarily on its armed forces; to that end they brought in more soldiers from Huancayo and marine infantry from El Callao; from Huancavelica to Ticrapo they deployed into the countryside campaigning for the elections and calling on people to vote, threatening with the firing squad anyone not doing so.

Part of their control was to establish a permit (safe-conduct) system for traveling; 5 days before the elections they stopped the train leaving Huancavelica, arrested 400 passengers, whom they robbed, tortured and paraded through the city while they shouted the same would happen to all those who don't obtain and produce a safe-conduct pass. In the same city the soldiers waged war against revolutionary signs (paintings) with Party slogans on the walls, taking down red flags, which they dragged through the streets, shooting and reaping them, but contrary to their expectations, the people laughed and ridiculed them. Then military proceeded to conduct illegal searches of homes and murdering and disappearing noncombatant civilians (among them 13 students from the Pedagogic Institute, the victims of repeated searches.) The masses were also black mailed, for instance, as a condition to pick up their pay checks, teachers had to attend a boring lecture by the political-military chief; at the same time flyers were dropped from helicopters: "peasant friend, reject the terruco because he is your enemy" (any similarity is not a simple coincidence!). But faced with this sinister campaign, the People's War confronted it boldly and resolutely; as a sign of this advance in the departmental capital itself on October 8, the army barracks, commissary and police cafeteria were sabotaged; there was a blackout and, most important, agitation was begun at the cinema, the masses went out into the streets and formed a steadily increasing chorus, which turned into a roaring rally at the Main Square, shouting "vivas" to Chairman Gonzalo, the Party, the People's War and urging, "Don't vote!", amidst the darkness, dynamite explosions and rifle shots; neither soldiers nor police went out and the People's Army (EGP) controlled the city. The 12th, election day, passed amidst the strike and the daily blackouts from the 11th to the 13th of November; the dawn broke with red flags with the hammer and sickle posted conspicuously on the streets and violent explosions; it was a dead city until about 11:00 a.m., at which time soldiers began to enter houses looking for leaders and members of electoral boards, and bringing the people out to vote by force; but that resulted in less than 40% of the electorate in that city voting; but in the barrios, young towns, and their surroundings they did not go to vote, the strike besides, which the highways into the city were blockaded. If this happened in the capital city, in the smaller cities and in the countryside the problem was worse for reaction; since, besides not having any candidates in many places, not to vote was the sentiment and desire among the masses, because from experience "voting" means nothing for them. Here we have, too, a good example of how to use elections in a revolutionarily manner.


It is the heart of the economic process of Peruvian society, whose vertex is Lima and it is key within the State's geopolitical plan, considering this reality, the action and development of the People's War in this region is better understood. There the struggle increases in intensity and shows sharper characteristics than in other locations; sabotages there are tremendously stunning, like the leveling to ground in SAIS Tupac Amaru and Ramon Castilla, or the Los Andes fish farm, or the offices and encampment of the Pichis-Palcazu project; and among these, the of SAIS's Tupac Amaru horses used by the army; and sabotage of the agricultural enterprise of Romero , a concoction of bureaucratic capitalism and the big bourgeoisie, in Chanchamayo, where 10,000 sacks of coffee were destroyed. Great sabotages against the State enterprises; at Enafer, blowing up of locomotives or derailments like those in Yauli and Chuccis; attacks at Centromin, sabotages in mines of Casapalca and Morococha, in the latter paralyzing the mineral concentrator or in Oroya paralyzing the refinery and foundry, besides the derailments of trains loaded with minerals; at Electroperu, the taking down of towers, 59 of them during the November armed strike, thus generating large and extensive blackouts.

Also, blowing up of bridges: Four in Mucllo, Comas and Concepcion-Satipo highway. Moreover, not just State mining is hit, also hit are two other "private" mining centers like Allpamina, property of R. Gubbins, notorious member of the big bourgeoisie. In addition, of great importance are the cattle (livestock) requisitions and invasions of land, 8,200 sheep and 10,300 hectares, all for the masses, mainly for the poor peasantry. That way the traditional economic base of Peruvian society is seriously hit and the basis of the Old State deeply undermined in this region, as in others. It is in turn very important how the People's War penetrates into the central jungle strips, developing in the provinces of Tarma, Chanchamayo and Satipo; while at the same time empowering the class struggle in Huancayo, the departmental Capital, whose undeniable examples are the mobilizations by 5,000 high school students secondaries in July, and 15,000 students in October; besides the selective annihilations of authorities and candidates, which shake up the entire region (in August, in Tarma, the sub prefect was the only remaining civil authority; while in Huancayo the sub prefect and lieutenant-mayor were annihilated; and in Concepcion the provincial mayor); and to emphasize how the struggle is elevated, ambushes against Centromin and Enafer train were carried out. As regards the municipal elections, in order to activate them and control them they brought troops from Lima, Trujillo, Iquitos and Tacna; they unleashed electoral blackmail, genocide and psychological warfare, deploying thousands of soldiers and police from their repressive forces. There too, the Party applied the armed strike from the 11th to the 13th throughout the region. It was a remarkable success and the masses observed it, especially in Junin and Pasco. Through force reaction tried to break the strike and force the people to vote, and to that end, from the eve of the elections, above all in the marginal neighborhoods of the major cities, they began to drive the masses like if they were cattle. But they failed in their effort to obtain a large voter turnout since the absenteeism was massive; despite the collaboration of revisionists, opportunists and reactionaries, the elections had to be held only in the departmental and provincial capitals.


The Huallaga Region, and above all the Upper Huallaga is strategic, and each day of greater importance; not only because of its huge potential in natural riches, whose plundering by the World Bank, the International Development Bank and imperialist enterprises in collusion with the great bourgeoisie and the Peruvian State have been planned for years, but mainly because of the vigor with which the People's War develops there. Its forcefulness and advances are clearly seen in the hard blows administered against the reactionary armed forces, such as the destruction of the army barracks in Madre Mia, added to the numerous ambushes which followed, among which these stand out: against the army again, on the highway connecting Uchiza and Progreso, in the second part of 1989, annihilating a lieutenant and seven soldiers, with four wounded and the surrender of three; and against the police in Villa Palma, with the annihilation six police and two wounded; both in September. And in October, the ambush against an army convoy with 35 troops, of whom one officer and four soldiers died, and leaving 12 wounded. Guerrilla actions which, given the conditions of their development, considerably increase the annihilations against authorities, snitches, infiltrators, spies and enemies of all kinds. Around the elections, as in the entire country, these actions increased, especially against municipal authorities and candidates, paralleling an intense campaign among the masses calling on them not to vote; with all this, in spite of the bloody genocidal electoral repression, it could not prevent a high degree of absenteeism. On the other hand, it is of substantial importance for revolution and counterrevolution (or its risk) the greater repercussion of the People's War each day in the areas bordering the north of San Mart¡n, all of Huanuco and Ucayali; obviously this prospect, as that in the rest of the country, increases the nightmares of reaction, disrupting still more their uneasy sleep of a cornered beast. But the struggle there also justly hits the genocidal demagogue himself, Garcia Perez, capturing and flattening the cattle ranches "Acuario" and "Mi Sue¤o," of his property, located at Km. 35 on the Federico Basadre Highway, and at Km. 7 on the highway to Nueva Requena; attacked on May 24 and June 5 of 1989, respectively; distributing the confiscated goods and cattle among the masses (more than 700 persons participated), among these were 188 cattle and 50 calves, six horses, 15 pigs, etc.; and destroying calamine, dozens of drums of petroleum and oil, 10 tractors, three (large) electric generators, etc. Of course, that is nothing compared to the immense crimes committed by this sinister individual; meanwhile, let us get one hair out of the wolf; some day the people will do justice.

The situation in the Huallaga Region raises an important concern of a possible direct intervention by Yankee imperialism. This matter revolves around the prospect that the contradiction nation versus imperialism might become principal, which would represent a basic change in the strategic and development of the People's War in Peru. A magazine of the United States army states:

"Finally, and more seriously, the United States confronts one aspect of the insurgency in Latin America which offers a greater threat, but one which perhaps could still provide us with the weapon allowing us to recover the moral superiority, which we apparently have lost.

"There is an alliance among some drug traffickers and some insurgents. Several countries in Latin America confront the corruption of their rulers and military officers. These countries make an effort to treat the problem with the uncertain support of the United States and with varying degrees of success. The dollars earned by the drug traffickers are delivered to the boxes of certain guerrillas or, possibly, in the form of weapons and material, to the hands of the guerrilla.

"A solidification of this connection in the public perception and in Congress will carry us to the necessary support to counter these guerrilla terrorists/drug traffickers in this hemisphere. It would be relatively easy to generate such support once the connection is proven and a total war is declared by the National Command Authority. Congress would have difficulty preventing the support for our allies with the training, advising and security assistance necessary for them to fulfill their mission. The religious and academic groups who tirelessly have supported Latin American insurgents would see themselves in an indefensible moral position.

"Above all, we would have an unblemished moral position from which to launch a coordinated offensive effort, for which we would count the resources of the Department of Defense and the rest of the sources. The recent operation in Bolivia is a first step. Instead of answering defensively to each insurgency according to the individual case, we could initiate actions in coordination with our allies. Instead of immersing ourselves in the legislative mesh and the financial constraints characteristic of our position of security assistance, we could answer the threat more swiftly. Instead of debating each separate threat, we can begin to perceive the hemisphere as a unity, and at last arrive at developing the vision that we so much need." (Military Review, Spanish-American Edition, May 1987, pp. 49-51.)

Thus, "drug trafficking" is a "weapon to recover the moral superiority" of Yankee imperialism, providing it with a "moral position for a coordinated offensive" and with the "hemispheric vision," which it now lacks. These criteria, obviously more developed than before, guide Yankee politics. We see very clearly how sinister is the plan to slander the People's War as "narco-terrorism" and whose interests it serves, and what the aim of the Old State is, of reaction, of revisionism, of the opportunists and their lackeys of all kinds, whose arch-reactionary campaigns for many years have slandered and charged the People's War with "narco-terrorism." The objective of such slander is plainly and simply to promote the aggression and intervention by Yankee imperialism, serving and defending their interests, as well as those of Peruvian reaction. That is why we must expose even further the counterrevolutionary essence of presenting the People's War as "terrorism" or "narco-terrorism"; we must denounce the increasing Yankee intervention and its plans of aggression. Let's develop and popularize our anti- imperialist campaign of, "Yankees Go Home!". Let's aim better and make an effort to unite the Peruvian people, the immense majority of them, on the basis of the peasant-worker alliance; to prepare ourselves ideologically, politically and organically to continue developing the People's War under any circumstances, raising even higher Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, Gonzalo Thought; to go on fighting each day persistently and relentlessly to conquer Power in all the country, as part of the world proletarian revolution, to which we are linked stronger than ever in the overflowing cause of Communism; and to hit our enemies accurately and stunningly, whoever they are, and even more so Yankee imperialism, as we already did in the attack of Santa Lucia, its military base of anti-national aggression, on April 7, one day before the general elections of 1990.


In the South of the country the People's War develops mainly in the Department of Puno. Among its noticeable actions we have the assault and taking of  of Ananea, province of Sand¡a; where we hit simultaneously the two police stations, and annihilated the governor, the mayor, the judge and nine policemen, including one wounded and two who surrendered. In Yunguyo, on the Bolivian border, sabotage destroyed the sub prefecture, meeting nearby were Garcia Perez and the Bolivian president. This action generated, once again, patrol incursions by the armed forces of the neighboring country; as in Ananea, it was carried out in October. In November, while Azangaro was taken, peoples' trials and anti-electoral propaganda were made, the candidates resigning en masse as in Huancane. In December, Orurillo, province of Melgar, was taken and peoples' trials and selective annihilations were applied. But actions were not restricted to Puno, also in the departments of Cusco, Arequipa, Moquegua and Tacna, although these departments sabotage and armed agitation and propaganda develops more.


On its turn, in the North of the country, the city of Huamachuco, capital of the province of Sanchez Carrion, was taken over in October, the mayor was annihilated. In November, annihilation of the mayor of Sanagoran; as well as in Trujillo, capital of the department of La Libertad, five sabotages shook the city, in the near vicinity the ministers of foreign relations of the Group of Eight countries were meeting, the satellite TV antenna was sabotaged, a simultaneous action was done against Channel 7 in Santiago de Chuco and two radio stations run by revisionism in Cajabamba, Department of Cajamarca. And in December, an attack on Cachicad'an and assault on the Mollebamba police station. The actions developed too on the Northern Coast, besides Trujillo, Chimbote, Chiclayo, Piura and Tumbes are, as cities (the three last ones are departmental capitals), theaters of the People's War, developing in them not just propaganda and sabotage but selective annihilations, against an army captain and two policemen, in Tumbes and Chiclayo respectively.

Both in the North and in the South the "land problem" is fundamental, and where the Party's policy is applied, developing (with arms in hands) the invasions and distributing land, as well as defending them later on. The issue is to defend and conquer the land with the People's War, and in a like manner to conquer and defend the necessary conditions to develop production for the benefit of the people. Both in the South and North as well as in the rest of the country, the campaign to boycott the municipal elections were carried out successfully. Armed strikes were promoted to raise the political conscience of the masses, and they were organized only in places where it was possible to guarantee its success, such as in the provinces of Azangaro, in Puno, and in Santiago de Chuco, Otuzco and Sanchez Carrion in the department of La Libertad. These armed strikes paralyzed those regions and resulted in greater voter absenteeism and had repercussions.

In the Mid North, part of the Department of Lima and Ancash, an attack against the president of the electoral board in Huacho, and the annihilation of two policemen at Barranca, both actions took place in September. A sabotage of a bank in Supe and the blowing up of the municipality and police station in Carquin; destruction of micro region in Bolognesi; in Cajatambo, attack on the police counterinsurgency base, peoples' trial to the mayor and sabotage to the regional educational direction; on the Callejon de Huaylas, for three days in a row, electric towers were blown up generating blackouts in 50 towns, red flags with hammer and sickle were raised and anti-electoral slogans were painted; the seizure of Trillos, in Bolognesi province, peoples' trial was held; all these guerrilla actions took place in October. The government decreed a state of emergency in Barranca, Huaura, Cajatambo and Oyon provinces in the Department of Lima; and sent an army battalion to Huaraz. The day before municipal elections, the People's Army took over a bus 25 km from Huaraz, the capital of the Department of Ancash, and after getting the passengers out dynamited it (the companies suspended service); sabotage to the residence of the governor; a general blackout in Aija, Recuay, Yungay, Carhuaz and Huaraz. In the Mid South, the southern part of the Department of Lima and ICA, violent guerrilla hits in the mountain province of Yauyos took place, bordering the departments of Junin and Huancavelica, the People's Army seized several towns and wounding one policeman in a clash in Lincha, in September; and in the same month the towers were blown up at Ca¤ete, while the newspapers themselves cried out: "They have taken over the ICA countryside." In October, taking over the city of Palpa, provincial capital; the precinct and the investigative police post were smashed, annihilating a captain and six policemen. During the same month, a 48 hours armed strike were carried out in the province of Nazca, it was a complete success since the city streets were completely deserted. Also in October, the district of Zu¤iga was taken over by the guerrillas, in the province of Ca¤ete, with more annihilations; and topping off the month's actions, the Coyllor bridge was blown up. The November campaign was focused on the boycott, with propaganda and agitation not to vote; actions against government buildings in Nazca, in the districts of San Clemente and Tupac Amaru of the province of Pisco, whose capital experienced a blackout; actions aimed against the residences of the candidates; the Aprista meeting in ICA was interrupted, and in Pisco it was canceled. In the Mid North, an intense campaign was developed for the boycott and against the municipal elections, and an armed strike was organized in the Callejon de Huaylas with multiple guerrilla actions. It was a complete success throughout the Callejon, helping much to increase electoral absenteeism. Both the Mid North as well as the Mid South are, strategically, of paramount importance to surround Lima, as everyone knows.


The capital city, with one-third of the nation's population; macrocephalic capital of an oppressed and backward nation, is a great concentration of economic, political and military power, a gigantic mirror of the general crisis in Peruvian society; an immense drum of national and international repercussion; but at the same time, mainly the primary center of the Peruvian proletariat, prime witness of the hunger and struggles of inexhaustible legions of popular masses, flesh of the flesh of our heroic people who constantly toil, day after day, working and fighting at the factories and in the neighborhoods and shantytowns.

Based on these outstanding characteristics, we can judge the fundamental and transcendental importance of waging the People's War also in the capital; more so if the road from the country to the city, of surrounding the cities from the countryside, must be crowned, after the arduous struggle of the protracted war, in the insurrection in the cities and mainly so in the capital city; especially if we keep in mind the peculiarities of the People's War in Peru, which follows the road from the countryside to the city, but develops the struggle in both, with the countryside the main part, as it still is, and the city as a complement, as was set in the "Outline of the Armed Struggle" approved in the VIII Plenum of the Central Committee. Starting from that premise, part of the Party's propaganda reaches the capital to profoundly transform and shape its ideological and political foundations; there the proletariat and the people receive the class ideology, turning into the strength of their arms the messages they get in their minds: the "Interview to Chairman Gonzalo"; the poster "Nine years of People's War"; the graphic publication "Day of Heroism. Third Anniversary"; Chairman Mao's "Nothing is impossible to whomever dares to climb the heights"; Lenin's anthology "Imperialism is the waiting room to the social revolution of the proletariat"; or the pamphlets "The proletarian revolution and Khrushchev's revisionism" and "On the dictatorship of the Proletariat"; or "In commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the Chinese Revolution" and "The Party, the People's War and the Boycott."

Among the guerrilla actions shaking up Lima, during the First Campaign of Developing, in the last third of 1989, we conducted armed propaganda and agitation, the successive campaigns developed with the masses, with the proletariat, the leading class of the revolution and the poor masses of the neighborhoods and shantytowns, the base of party work in the capital; an intensive campaign of flyer distribution in support of the class struggle, always aiming at the deepest sectors of the people, who will transform the old society. This form of struggle consists from the simple painting of slogans in people's boards, up to the conspicuous murals painted at San Marcos University, which proclaim the rebellion of the youth; from the vibrant leaflets in the hands, to the huge posters stamping the words "People's War" on the walls, showcases, buses, trains; from the red flag commanded by the hammer and the sickle, which announces the new proletarian dawn, to the thundering unleashed by the explosive charge; from the steeled spirit of the class which animates the marches, up to the vigorous overflow of the armed mobilizations which explodes in blockades and flaming tires of Molotovs and noise bombs. In synthesis, from the idea that arms the mind to the shining hands in guerrilla actions.

The sabotages too express themselves, like the one at Renasa, action in support of the struggling mining proletarians during the month of September. In October, car bombs at the embassies of the USSR and China and at the United States Consulate. The actions against the two imperialists superpowers are part of our answer to the new global counterrevolutionary offensive, which is headed by Gorbachev, Deng and their gangs of traitors. The burning of buses, about ten of them were burned, as well as others before and after October, is another form of sabotage that has had a great impact, which hit mainly State enterprises, since the State uses those enterprises politically, trying to break up the people's struggles.

The electrical blackouts are another type of sabotage that has importance and repercussions each time. In September, October, November and December there have been blackouts of major dimensions, spanning not just from Marcona, in ICA, up to Chiclayo, in Lambayeque, going through the Department of Lima and mainly in the capital, but also hitting all of the Coastal and central Sierra; but besides their duration with all their sequels they often lasts more than ten days. In observing how the state handles blackouts and their derived problems, we see clearly whose interests it protects and whom it benefits, that is, to whom they serve first and better.

Selective annihilation hits hard the snitches, recalcitrant enemies of the class and the people, and other individuals with debts of blood; let's mention only two: first the Commander of the National Police and sub chief of Interpol, who in Ayacucho bathed in the blood of the people, murdering the children of the masses. Second, this is recent, the former president of the Social Security (IPSS), F.S. Salaverry, who was a sharp knife in the heart of every insured in Peru, a hated trafficker of public health and daily murderer of all the retirees in the country; his annihilation hit particularly hard the bureaucracy (one of the fundamental pillars of the State, the principal one after the armed forces.) The hypocritical wailing of some is not truly for the justly annihilated, but a venting of anxiety by the guilty conscience of the big oppressor bureaucrats, over whose heads pend the implacable word of people's justice, which may take a while to be accomplished but it is sure to come.

The guerrilla combats materialized in the attack of the main police station at the San Ildefonso Market on October 2; annihilated were a lieutenant and five subordinates, according to bourgeois newspapers. On December 15, 1989, an ambush of a Peruvian army bus transporting 35 or 40 effective of the army intelligence service (SIE), trapped at the crossing of Zarumilla Avenue and Jiron Pedregal, in the San Martin de Porres district. Four were annihilated and 15 wounded, some seriously, according to reaction's own newspapers.

The armed strike of November 3rd deserves special mention. This strike in the capital acquired great importance since it targeted directly the municipal elections, and for this reason it merited the concentrated fury of the reactionaries, revisionists and all of their lackeys in general. They mobilized heaven and earth trying to break it up; but when they saw it was uncontainable, they appealed to their usual great argument, unrestrained violence, and there we had the real cause of the brutal and widespread repression at Victoria Square. There, the National Police once more unleashed its bloodthirsty fury, and brutally assaulted the multitude of friends and relatives of those victims of repression who marched in the hundreds, carrying wreaths, flowers and banners, led by the Committee of Families of Prisoners of War and Disappeared, to the cemetery, in order to render tribute to the Heroes of the People fallen in the Rebellion in the Luminous Trenches of Combat, and to the rest of the fighters and children of the people who have given their lives for the revolution and shed their blood for the People's War. But the defying courage of the people, the militant defense of the fighters and the support of the masses, shone to confront the reactionary ignominy. For that reason, it deserves our firmest rejection, the treacherous "condemnation" against the brutally attacked marchers, not only by our recalcitrant enemies, but also by those who call themselves "revolutionary," who in collusion with reaction "condemned" the victims of repression, and in essence, as usual they supported the government and reaction. However, repression proved useless to contain the preparations of the strike, which directly threatened the electoral hacks; the self-proclaimed "Left Unity" (IU) jumped to the forefront. Henry Pease, IU candidate to mayor of Lima, jumped to defend what he called "democracy" and against the purported "terrorism"; and he convoked a de facto anticommunist crusade of fascist odor, under the banner of a "civic march," invoking unity of all "democrats" at a meeting held on November 3rd, the same day as the strike. Their meeting was conducted under the umbrella and protection of genocidal army and police guns, and under the "spiritual" mantle of the Catholic Church; present were the candidates, the bosses of the reactionary parties, among them (of course) the revisionist chiefs, including the "caudillos" of the workers unions bureaucracy; first and foremost was Vargas Llosa, for now the narrow winner of the first round in the elections, with whom H. Pease united in an embrace of black collusion and contention. What did IU and its candidate Pease get out of this meritorious service? The defeat of Pease and IU in the municipal elections of 90 and a major disaster in the April [presidential elections], was a just and well- deserved repudiation by the people. But neither the anticommunist march was able to contain the armed strike on November 3, which was a resounding victory for the proletariat and the people, one further step toward the major incorporation of the masses to the People's War. "It doesn't matter what the traitors say!"

It is not possible to speak of the People's War, of the un declinable toil it entails, without having very much in mind the men and women, militant fighters and children of the masses, who every hour of the day, twenty-four fours each day, fight an uphill battle in the dungeons of reaction; those who throughout the country built the Luminous Trenches of Combat out of those dungeons; those who on June 19, 1986, by shedding their own blood gave us the "Day of Heroism," a historic milestone of the rebellion, those who never bent their knees, rose Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, Gonzalo Thought to the heights and do it and will continue to fight for the victory of the People's War, no matter what kind of trench it happens to be in.

This is the direction of ten years of People's War and, in synthesis, the great development achieved on its tenth anniversary. Its uncontainable and ever growing expansion materialized in the multiplication of the Open People's Committees, achieved precisely in 1989, a historic victory and transcendental step towards conquering Power countrywide. Then, what does he purported "swamping" of the People's War claimed by reactionaries consist of? It consists simply of a black vomit spewed by the reactionaries and their hacks. Over this supposed "swamping" they carry out a taunted and widely publicized campaign of "strategic failure of Sendero," which they try to keep up, besides, with their supposed "abandoning of the revolutionary road" and "non achievement of goals." What is their base for this supposed "abandoning of the road?" No other than the advancement of the People's War in the cities! An old publicity trick by the reactionary press, tried in much the same way during the elections of 1985, which is not simply a coincidence. However, what is real and practical are the continuous and victorious actions materialized to date, and how the war flows on the road of surrounding the cities from the countryside and which is applied firmly and consequently.

Moreover, according to our specific conditions, we apply this road following the norm of developing simultaneously the People's War in countryside and city, the countryside being the principal and the city a complement. Dialectically, the progress in the cities is an evidence of the development of the road from countryside to city, and the perspective to transfer the vertex of the People's War from the countryside to the city to conquer Power in all the country. All of which is in strict conformity with the process of surrounding the cities from the countryside; and consequently the People's War in Peru, is the application of the theory of the People's War of Chairman Mao Tse-tung, as part of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, applied to the specific conditions of the Peruvian Revolution.

On the other hand, what is the basis for their empty chatter of "non-achievement of goals?" On this, they viciously traffic with revolutionary secrets, since we can publicize general policies and even concrete policies in certain fields, but not addressing specific details, which obviously only serve the enemy. Thus, competing among themselves on who serve best their masters (reaction and imperialism, mainly Yankee), they cry out loud: "they haven't met their goals," "the People's Guerrilla Army doesn't exist," "there is no New Power," "they didn't achieve the strategic equilibrium." If the People's Army didn't exist, then what armed organization has carried out more than 120,000 guerrilla actions (1980-1989)? What armed organization is developing the People's War in almost the entire country? What armed organization have the reactionary armed and police forces been fighting for ten years? Our military practice is made of solid and stunning realities and only an armed force like the People's Guerrilla Army can fulfill it and maintain it. The thing is that People's Army is an army of the new type, therefore its construction, fighting methods and development follow other principles; Chairman Mao taught us: "You fight in your way and we in ours; we fight when we can win and retreat when we cannot"; great principle explained in 1965 as follows: "In other words, you rely on modern weapons and we rely in the masses of people with a high revolutionary conscience; you play with your superiority and we with ours; you have your combat methods and we have ours."


Since 1982 we have been destroying the Old Power in the countryside; generating in consequence a Power vacuum, each day greater and extending to larger areas; as is well known and recognized. Does that Power vacuum remain a political limbo, an interregnum of the class struggle? Can anyone believe that the Old Power is destroyed and nothing can replace it? Doesn't the destruction of the Old Power imply, as counterweight, the construction of the New Power? Aren't destruction of the Old Power and construction of the New Power two terms of the same contradiction? Well then, over the destruction of the Old Power the New is created, which is a joint dictatorship, based on the worker-peasant alliance and supported by the People's Army. As the ABC of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism reads, the New Power in its development obviously follows the fluidity of the People's War, and the specifications of our concrete reality. But precisely with the multiplication of the Open People's Committees, in 1989, the New State tends to achieve a relative stability.

About strategic equilibrium, we can't just pull it out of a thin air, nor like a gambler pulls an ace off his sleeves. These problems must be studied seriously, and especially the military ones. The point is clear and concise: the defensive, the equilibrium and the strategic offensive, as we well know, are the three elements of the protracted war. The first being longest and, how international experience shows it, the development of the second and third are intimately linked to the complex situation of the overall class struggle in the country, and to the world situation, since they entail sweeping away in the entire country, the rule of reaction and of imperialism and the installation in the entire nation of a People's Republic, with all the repercussions it has in the world, starting from the neighboring countries.

The above is a brief description about the direction and perspective of the People's War in Peru, which continues firmly and on the rise, with unbending tenacity. Have we set any specific date to go over to strategic equilibrium? Did any military plan have that specific objective? Is it an unfulfilled "commitment?" Is it a task linked to the reactionary elections? or is it a "goal" of Capping off the Great Leap with a Golden Seal! or any other campaign, as they say? Pure speculations aimed at slandering the People's War, trying to discredit it before the masses, and sow confusion. As the Central Committee session stated, this engender is being propagated precisely at the time that Peruvian reaction and imperialism have "a need to develop the counterinsurgency war, empower their military actions, mobilize the masses and increase intervention, mainly Yankee," and when, under the disguise of fighting against "drug trafficking," Yankee imperialism plans its greater direct aggression against the People's War. Situations which, linked to the transcendental progress of the People's War in 89 enabled the advance from guerrilla warfare to war of movements, and clearly showed that strategic equilibrium was in the cards and that the revolution developed in decisive moments. That too, of course, was within our concrete material conditions.

In conclusion, the purported "strategic failure of Sendero," supposedly based on the so-called "swamping" sustained by the nonsense that there is "an abandonment of the road" and "non attainment of goals," is simply a new sinister reactionary campaign led by Yankee imperialism itself. It is part of the psychological warfare and the ongoing plan to empower the counterinsurgency war. But besides all that, in the short term, it seeks to sow confusion amidst the Peruvian people and to undermine the linking between the masses and the People's War.

In order to expose and mark with fire those vile mercenaries who miserably and treacherously help reaction and imperialism, it is worth highlighting two questions: First, they do not pay attention to the material conditions of the Peruvian Revolution; this is something they obviously cannot see now or in the future, but we take it fully into account, which at the same time refutes the lie that we practice dogmatism. Second, that behind their demagoguery, lies the old rotten revisionist criteria about revolutionary situations, which take them to imagine today (even if they do not say so explicitly), the existence of a revolutionary crisis that, according to them, not to seize Power now would imply the failure of the revolution in general and of the People's War in particular. Let's remember the three requirements for the existence of a revolutionary situation:

  • 1. Power escapes the hands of reaction,
  • 2. revisionism and opportunism do not exert an influence over the masses,
  • 3. the masses close ranks around the Party.

Specifically in our case, the revolutionary crisis is linked to the People's War, it suffices to say:

  • 1. the armed forces retain it capacity to sustain the old State;
  • 2. revisionism and opportunism continue to ride over the masses through the industrial and trade union bureaucracy and;
  • 3. the People's War must still generate the great jump about incorporating the masses, which happens at the end of it.

Therefore, what we have is a revolutionary situation in increasing development due to the sharpening of the class struggle and, mainly, the People's War, which not only has persisted for ten years, but each day goes on, it is demolishing the Old State and constructing the New Power a little more, aiming at completely sweeping aside the obsolete and putrid Peruvian society of oppression and exploitation. Consequently, the perspective of the current revolutionary situation in development is the revolutionary crisis or the rise (auge) of the revolution, in the words of P. Mao Tse-tung.

Closely linked to the lie about the "strategic failure of Sendero" is the lie about "division and surrender." The "surrender" farce is not new. Since the beginning of his genocidal demagogic government, Garcia Perez and the armed forces staged it; in the [document] "Develop the People's War to Serve the World Revolution," we read:

"The October 1986 Lurigancho genocide followed, after the reactionary APRA government staged the farce of the `massive capitulation of Senderistas' at Llochegua and Corazon-Pampa, province of La Mar, Department of Ayacucho; even, as reported by all the media, an interview was staged between the `supreme chief' (Garcia Perez) with `surrendered leaders' who he received at the Palace, 'an act filmed from a distance' in which nobody heard anything or saw anyone's face due ostensibly to `understandable security reasons.' But the engender was quickly disemboweled by the published statements of a navy officer who took part in the operative in question: `the same officer explained in the interview by this reporter that the hundred or so people who allegedly surrendered, among men, women and children, never got near the bases of Corazon-Pampa or Llochegua, but were rounded up by marine infantry at the mountain heights and later on taken to both localities. When lieutenant Anibal was asked if the peasants, at the time of the surrendering, carried any weapons, he answered no . . . '; according to La Republica of October 25, 1985. That was the famous lie about the 'surrendering.'"

Again today, they resurrect the same treacherous lie trying to undermine the People's War and cover up the forceful nucleation they inflict upon the peasantry, to create mesnadas (paramilitary peasants), repeating obsolete molds previously smashed by the convergence of the enslaved masses themselves and by guerrilla actions. It is evident that with the increasing surrender of mesnadas created by the armed forces, which we saw more frequently these past few months, their aim is to reenact the genocidal blood bath of the years 83 and 84.


This purulent tale repeated over and over by reaction is "based" on the purported "surrender," "swamping" and "strategic failure" discussed previously, and on forgered flyers distributed by the armed forces (as part of their psychological warfare) as well as on a supposedly, "being tired of so much fighting," "being sorry for so many deaths," "hard life and difficult conditions," etc., all falsehoods that clearly revealed which institutions, organizations and feathery pens were the sources of such engenders. All of them are defenders or sustainers or "retainers" of the old State and the obsolete Peruvian society: deadly enemies of the People's War who cover up the crimes of the Peruvian State and its armed and police forces of the daily genocides they perpetrate against the people. These hacks deny the basic principles of war; the quota needed to annihilate the enemy, the aspects of construction that the war requires. They are sunk in the historical pessimism of reaction and imperialism, whom they serve, incapable of understanding that the People's War is animated and developed by the optimism of class provided by Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, Gonzalo Thought and that each fighter of the People's Army is forged by the principle of, "Serving the people with all her/his heart." The nonsense they preach, naturally, is well suited to the counterinsurgency plans and aimed against the People's War and the Party, seeking to fetter the brilliant revolutionary perspective.

In addition, those who have internal problems derived from their own mistakes and opportunism, infatuated especially by their persistent electioneering, joyfully cry out the supposed existence of the two positions in the Party: "a militarist one and a political one." Such differentiation is theoretically erroneous; assuming, as they speculate, the existence of a military position as such, would be a right opportunist line, whose component, with regard to the military line, would be bourgeois line opposed to the Party. On what do they base such Philistine speculation? On the disemboweled "defeat and swamping of 1989" and the "strategic failure!" All this only shows their desperation and impotence before the advance of a People's War which threatens their nefarious riding on the masses and shakes their blessed chapels of parliamentary cretinism.

However, all that chatter is only dead leaves before the strong unity of the Party, solidly sustained on the Basis of Party Unity (BUP), sanctioned at the First Congress, and an irreplaceable warranty of the steady development of the People's War.

In synthesis, what are the bottom causes of the insane fabrication about "split and surrender?" The general elections, which acquire a crucial character to reaction and its lackeys, even more so after the major weakening of the demo bourgeois system derived from the April election and the dark perspectives faced by whoever results elected in the runoff. The emboldened wave of strikes, the stunning expression of the sharpening class struggle, which day after day assumes the slogan of, "Fight and Resist!" And the vigorous and expansive development of the People's War, whose brilliant perspective is to, Conquer Power in all the Country! These are the three bottom causes carrying the armed and police forces, no doubt with the approval and support of their "supreme chief," the genocidal demagogue. No one with at least -a half an ounce of brain can take seriously the crude and ridiculous fabricated lie about "split and surrender." A campaign launched also launched as part of their psychological warfare. And each organization, parties, celebrities, candidates and lackeys, "revolutionary leader," and workers' unions hacks, according to his/her particular degree of dialectic collusion vs. contention in the amidst of reaction, as well as appetite and pay, has trafficked with the bizarre farce. But who, with the persistence of a gambler, has trafficked most with the engender, is its coauthor Garcia Perez, the notorious "charismatic" genocidal demagogue, the nefarious head of the government bringing in most hunger in over 1000 years of Peruvian history, who especially in the last few months, cried at the top of his lungs "the defeat of Sendero." In this way, in that personal style of his which cavalierly ignores the most obvious truths, oblivious to reality, champion of the flamboyant empty chatter; and so he stated last April: Terrorism proposed a social revolution, an insurrection generalized in the entire country. And in all that it failed, I assure you without any doubts." What is Garcia Perez after? To present himself as the victor and his government as successful in order to, manipulate the disaster the next government will be, returning as a savior in 95. That is his dream, to which some self-proclaimed "revolutionaries" are helping too. That is, then, the gaseous lie of the so-called "split and surrendering of Sendero," which as its predecessors, vanishes before the fire storm of the People's War.

And since it couldn't be any other way, the reactionaries loudly preached that the votes and parliamentary cretinism of the general elections, as well as the municipal elections in 89, loudly preached the "first and biggest loser," and the imaginary defeat of the boycott. Already in the 1985 election the same was cried; then Belaunde, now a conspicuous member of FREDEMO, proclaimed "the biggest loser is terrorism." While Barrantes, "the natural United Left candidate," who today can't even get 5% of the votes cast, recited: "Sendero will fail . . . the electoral results of April 14th, with the massive presence of the entire people, constituted the best rejection of terrorism." But, who truly failed? Where is now the bankrupted champion of votes and polling places? At the same time, the current editor of "Expreso" pontificated: "there were two big losers in Sunday's general election: sender ism . . . " Therefore, the chatter is nothing new, the lyrics and the tune are the same, except that today is more anguished as well as more unbelievable. Now Garcia Perez, the non-registered candidate, who prepares his presidential dream for 95, who in the municipal elections called to cast blank or null votes, because, he claimed, the issue was to vote in any way in order to "defend democracy against terrorism." On the same April 8th, Garcia Perez proclaimed arrogantly and triumphantly: "Today you will see how the immense majority of the people (99% according to the APRA's daily Hoy) participate in democracy by casting their votes, and will bury terrorism by the electoral act."

Meanwhile Vargas Llosa and Fujimori, the winning candidates of the first round, with the emphasis and interpretation satisfactory to their endeavors, then in closed solidarity greeted the "triumph of democracy and the defeat of terrorism," thus repeating and honoring the same reactionary blabber of their predecessors. H. Pease, the new hero of the so-called "Left" Unity, from the ebb of his 7% of cast votes, proclaimed: "The first and biggest loser is Sendero." Of course, all of their statements were accompanied by an obliging chorus of the media and feathery pens. A simple conclusion follows from all of this: the same script and characters, defense of the existing order and the Old State, only the actors are changing, publicity increases and demagoguery grows. The same grotesque farce every five years!

In their publicity development, elections have the following course: First, to elevate to the skies the importance of elections and fight the alleged "sinister terrorist plan of preventing elections throughout the country by threatening to amputate fingers and murder those who vote";

Second, to loudly celebrate with drums and platters the "massive participation of people in the polling places" (in Peru voting is compulsory and, according to experts, if it wasn't forced not even half of current voters would show up), as well as the "triumph of democracy," the "failures of the boycott" and the "defeat of Sendero," while results are manipulated and adulterated, especially in the emergency zones, and the true figure on absenteeism is hidden; and,

Third, as late (and slowly) as possible, data on results begins to trickle in, until finally the well groomed and tailored results are announced by the National Electoral Board. Keep in mind this process so as not to be fooled by the electoral mumbo jumbo and find the truth behind all that compromised reactionary charade.

Well then, what do the official electoral results themselves say? Besides the fact that some 20% of able voters are not registered at all, 21.25% of those registered did not go to vote, a percentage which rises to 27% if we consider blank and null votes, including those who voted blank or null. Thus, this amount (27%) is only 0.6% less than the one obtained by Vargas Llosa (the winning candidate in the first run), and 2.4% more than the one obtained by Fujimori, who finished second. Consequently, if we compare the last two general elections in the five-year period, while absenteeism in 1985 only reached 8.8% of registered voters, in April of 1990 it climbed to 21.2%. In other words, from 1985 to 1990 absenteeism increased 2.5 times (150%). So, can anyone with a grain of sense speak of the failure of the boycott? , Or can anyone with a breeze of objectivity say, "the first and biggest loser is Sendero?" The matter is very clear and stunning, the tactic of the boycott, applied by the Party as part of the People's War, is each time more successful and complete, deepening the class struggle throughout the country with an increasing tendency against the elections, and in that way undermining one of the fundamental pillars of the demo bourgeois order, of the Peruvian State, of the class dictatorship headed by the big bourgeoisie. An anti-electoral tendency was also reflected in the municipal election of 89, when it was also loudly preached the defeat of the boycott, then absenteeism, according to projections, reached 17%; which obviously shows an evident increase. The boycott, therefore, is an incontrovertible reality and an undeniable success. It shows clearly how the policy of obstructing the elections, of undermining them and impeding them wherever possible is highly successful and, above all, it generates an anti-electoral tendency helpful to the formation of the political conscience of the people. A boycott tactic and anti-electoral tendency applied are forged by the People's War and is developed as an integral part of it. It is a good example of how to utilize the elections in the development of the People's War.

As to blank and null votes, they reached 15.35% of votes cast, that means in 1990 there was an increase of 1.45% with respect to 1985. Although null/blank votes went up, however it was much less than absenteeism; which (reasonably) raises the issue of fraud with this type of votes in detriment of those who cast them.

The following comparative table is most expressive; of importance is the increase of absenteeism, especially in areas in which the People's War develops more intensely:


Department Null and Blank Votes (1) Absenteeism (2)
1985 1990 1985 1990
Ayacucho 15.8 41.3 17.1 48.0
Apurimac 13.5 38.3 17.9 28.0
Huancavelica (3) -- 36.2 -- 40.4
Pasco 16.45 25.7 13.05 37.1
Junin 16.89 19.9 9.8 49.5
Huanuco 26.62 29.9 14.5 50.1
San Martin 11.49 26.77 14.5 31.4
Puno 24.5 28.45 9.0 23.0
Cusco 23.6 22.53 12.9 24.4
Cajamarca 22.2 27.03 15.8 27.0
Ancash 22.95 23.97 8.6 27.1
Ucayali 13.0 17.85 14.05 30.0
La Libertad 11.9 15.02 6.45 18.0
Lima 6.87 8.61 7.8 13.0
  • (1) percentage of cast votes.
  • (2) percentage of registered voters.
  • (3) JNE documents show neither null nor blank votes, nor is there a sum of the figures for the presidential formula nor for the senators; adding presidential data it shows 70,781 of a total 140,865 voting.


Here we can see the boycott as an incontestable success, a boycott which besides developing a tendency among the people against the elections, it helps the People's War; and the results of the April 1990 elections, an electoral process which, contrary to what reaction and imperialism wanted, weakened the system undermining its purported legitimacy (an important matter for the counterinsurgency war), a matter of obvious grave repercussions for the existing order. To conclude, on the elections and on the boycott, we only need to remember the following paragraphs of the already quoted "Developing . . . " [Document of the PCP, Developing the People's War at the Service of the World Proletarian Revolution - TRANS. "]:

"The fundamental thing about these tables is that the sum of the non registered, of the non voters and the null and blank voters added millions. This large mass is composed mostly by the non registered, that is people who operate outside the existing political system or who are openly against the same. It is also composed by non voters, who are against the elections or who are not interested in them; and by null and blank voters who formally comply with the obligation to vote and do not expect anything out it, its outcome or are not in agreement with any of the participating political parties. In general terms, this mass of citizens expresses repudiation, or indifference with respect to the existing political order and its elections to choose oppressors, its parties, which are instruments in the service of maintaining the established order, its preservation and evolution.

In synthesis, it means the objective negation and questioning of the Peruvian society and its institutions, of the historically obsolete social system, which must be swept away, as we are already doing with weapons since there is no other way of doing it, in the search of a new society which truly serves the people." And:

"In the last elections, as in others, the Communist Party of Peru only called for the boycott, to obstruct them and impede them wherever possible, but not to prevent the entire process as reaction pretends to impute the Party in order to proclaim its false triumphs due to the lack of real ones. But the historical main tendency is the fusion of the People's War led by the Party, with that great torrent represented by the millions of non registered, non voting and those blank or null vote casters; this is the torrent, which the Party is helping to structure as part of the sea of masses which necessarily will sweep away the old order of exploitation and oppression."

Up to here is the development of the People's War, and the boycott as part of it; but the principal, and transcendental question concentrating our attention, as necessary consequence of the road followed, is the conquest of Power countrywide. This is the brilliant perspective of the People's War; more so in light of the turbulent and decisive years we visualize for Peruvian society in the years to come in the near future, and especially in view of the extremely complex class struggle developing in today's world. For that reason, let's keep more in mind than ever Mariategui's words:

"I am a revolutionary. But I believe that between men of clear thinking and defined positions, it is easy to understand and appreciate each other, even when fighting against each other. Above all, fighting against each other. With the political sector that I will never be able to reach an understanding is with the other one: with mediocre reformism, with domesticated socialism, with pharisean democracy. Furthermore, if the revolution demands violence, authority, discipline, I am for violence, for authority, for discipline. I accept them, as a whole, with all their horrors, without cowardly reservations."

And above all what Marx, the great founder of Marxism, established: "Only under an order of things in which there are no classes or class antagonisms, is that social evolutions will cease to be political revolutions. Until such time comes, on the eve of each general reorganization of society, the last word will always be: `Struggle or die, the bloody struggle or nothing. It is the inexorable dilemma."'


To resolutely uphold Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, mainly Maoism, it is decisive to conquer Power countrywide, build the People's Republic of Peru and serve the world proletarian revolution by assuming firmly the undefeated and unblemished ideology of the proletariat in its three integral parts: the Marxist philosophy, the proletarian political economy and scientific socialism, not only to understand the world, but mainly to transform it. Thus, we must always base our politics on the powerful truth of Marxism- Leninism-Maoism, today more than ever, because Marxism is standing up against the sinister converging attack of both imperialism and the counterrevolutionary revisionist offensive led by Gorbachev and Deng. This is true even more so today, when the bloody world counterrevolution dreams of wiping out the proletariat and its irreplaceable historic role, aiming at the heart of the class: its ideology Marxism- Leninism-Maoism Class of which Chairman Mao said: "The proletariat is the greatest class in the history of humanity. It is the most powerful ideological and political revolutionary class, and due to its strength, it can and must unite the great majority of the people isolating and smashing the handful of enemies." Toward this end, we base ourselves on the First Congress of the Party, which in the first part of the Programma, highlights the basic principles:


The Communist Party of Peru is based on and guided by Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, principally Maoism and, specifically, by Gonzalo Thought as a creative application of the universal truth to the concrete conditions of the Peruvian revolution, as by Chairman Gonzalo, leader of our Party.

The Communist Party of Peru, organized vanguard of the Peruvian proletariat and an integral part of the international Proletariat, especially upholds the following basic principles:

  • Contradiction as the only fundamental law of the incessant transformation of eternal matter;
  • The masses make history and 'it is right to rebel';
  • Class struggle, dictatorship of the proletariat and proletarian internationalism;
  • The need for a Marxist-Leninist-Maoist Communist Party that firmly applies independence, autonomy and self-reliance;
  • To combat imperialism, revisionism, and reaction unbreakably and implacably;
  • To conquer and to defend Power with the People's War;
  • Militarization of the Party and concentric construction of the three instruments of the revolution;
  • Two-line struggle as the driving force of Party development;
  • Constant ideological transformation and to always put politics in command;
  • To serve the people and the world proletarian revolution; and,
  • An absolute unselfishness and a just and correct style of work.

From the ideology of the proletariat, Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, and based on the same text of the classics, today we need to focus our attention on the following issues: Let's start on how his work "The Class Struggle in France" Marx defined Communism in 1850: "The proletariat increasingly groups and unites itself based on revolutionary socialism, on Communism,...This socialism is the declaration of the permanent revolution, of the class dictatorship of the proletariat as a necessary transition point toward the suppression of the class differences in general; of the suppression of all production relations in which these differences rest, to the suppression of all social relations that correspond to these production relations, to subvert all these ideas that are generated by these social relations."


Revolutionary violence and parliamentary cretinism comprise an antagonistic contradiction and evidently a fundamental question of Marxism. Marx spoke of violence as the midwife of history and in the Manifesto, along with Engels, he laid out: "The Communists disdain to conceal their views and aims. They openly declare that their ends can be attained only by the forcible overthrow of all existing social conditions. Let the ruling classes tremble at a communist revolution. The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. Working men of all countries, unite!" Similarly, Lenin wrote: "No significant revolution in history has come about without a civil war. No serious Marxist would conceive the transition from capitalism to socialism without civil war." He reiterated the following: "Between capitalism and socialism there will be a long period of 'birth pangs', because violence is always the midwife of the old society," and that the bourgeois state "cannot be substituted by the proletarian state (by the dictatorship of the proletariat) through 'extinction', but only, as a general rule, by way of a violent revolution." Similarly, he insisted on "the necessity of systematically educating the masses in this, precisely because this idea about revolutionary violence is basic to the entire doctrine of Marx and Engels."

In the same vein, Chairman Mao's point of departure that "all Communists must understand this truth that political power grows from the barrel of a gun," establishing that " . . . in class societies revolutions and revolutionary war are inevitable. Without them there would be no leaps in social development, and the dominant reactionary classes could not be overthrown nor could the people conquer political power... The central task and superior form of a revolution is the seizure of power through arms, the solution of the problem through war. This Marxist-Leninist principle of revolution has universal validity, both in China as well as in other countries." And "the experience of class struggle in the era of imperialism teaches us that only through the power of guns can the working class and the working masses overthrow the bourgeoisie and the armed landlords. In this sense, we can say that only through arms can the entire world be transformed." With respect to the parliamentary cretinism condemned by Marx, Lenin was powerfully clear: "the followers of Bernstein accepted and continue to accept Marxism with the exception of its directly revolutionary aspect. They see parliamentary struggle not as one of the methods of struggle that is used particularly in some periods of history, but as the principal and almost exclusive form of struggle, which makes 'violence', the 'seizure of power' and 'dictatorship' unnecessary." And:"only the knaves and fools can believe that the proletariat should first win a majority of votes in elections realized under the yoke of the bourgeoisie, under the yoke of wage slavery, and that only after this should they conquer power. This is the height of silliness or hypocrisy. This substitution of the class struggle and revolution for elections under the old regime, under the old power." And:"This is now the most pure and vile form of opportunism. It is to renounce the act of revolution while revering it in words."

Linked to this contradiction we should keep in mind the position of Marx on elections, as quoted before, about the periodic allowance of the oppressed to elect their oppressors, and principally Chairman Mao's position: " Some say that elections are something very good and very democratic. As far as I am concerned, elections are simply a high- sounding word, and I don't believe there are any genuine elections. The Peking District has elected me to serve as the representative to the National People's Assembly, but how many in Peking really understand me? I perceive that Chou En-lai was named Premier by the Central Committee."

Tightly linked to the question of revolutionary violence and parliamentary cretinism is the unobjectionable and overpowering position of Lenin's on revisionism and the labor union front, outlined in The Bankruptcy of the Second International:

Legal mass organizations of the working class are perhaps the most important feature of the socialist parties in the epoch of the Second International. They were the strongest in the German Party, and it was here that the war of 1914-15 created a most acute crisis and made the issue a most pressing one. The initiation of revolutionary activities would obviously have led to the dissolution of these legal organizations by the police, and the old party from Legien to Kautsky inclusively sacrificed the revolutionary aims of the proletariat for the sake of preserving the present legal organizations. No matter how much this may be denied, it is a fact. The proletariat's right to revolution was sold for a mess of pottage organizations permitted by the present police law.

... An edifying picture. People are so degraded and stultified by bourgeois legality that they cannot even conceive of the need for organizations of another kind, illegal organizations, for the purpose of guiding the revolutionary struggle. So low have people fallen that they imagine that legal unions existing with the permission of the police are a kind of ultima Thule as though the preservation of such unions as leading bodies is at all conceivable at a time of crisis! Here you have the living dialectic of opportunism: the mere growth of legal unions and the mere habit that stupid but conscientious philistines have of confining themselves to bookkeeping, and have created a situation in which, during a crisis, these conscientious philistines have proved to be traitors and betrayers, who would smother the revolutionary energy of the masses. This is no chance occurrence. The building of a revolutionary organization must begin that is demanded by the new historical situation, by the epoch of proletarian revolutionary action but it can begin only over the heads of the old leaders, the stranglers of revolutionary energy, over the heads of the old party, through its destruction.

Of course, the counterrevolutionary philistines cry out "anarchism!", just as the opportunist Eduard David cried "anarchism" when he denounced Karl Liebknecht. In Germany, only those leaders seem to have remained honest socialists who the opportunists revile as anarchists . . ." [The Collapse of the Second International, LCW, V. 21, pp. 251-253]


The class struggle, and how to base ourselves on it, is another fundamental question of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, especially today. Let us look at what was established by Marx on the emancipation of the proletariat in "General Statutes of the International Workingmen's Association:"

That the emancipation of the working classes must be conquered by the working classes themselves; that the struggle for the emancipation of the working classes means not a struggle for class privileges and monopolies, but for equal rights and duties, and the abolition of all class rule;

That the economical subjection of the man of labor to the monopolizer of the means of labor, that is, the sources of life, lies, at the bottom of servitude in all its forms, of all social misery, mental degradation, and political dependence.

That the economical emancipation of the working classes is therefore the great end to which every political movement ought to be subordinate as a means; [Provisional Rules of the Association, MESW, Vol. 20, p. 15]

In its struggle against the united power of the owing class, the proletariat cannot act as a class other than by forming itself into a political party distinct from and opposed to all the old political parties created by the owing class. This constitution of the proletariat into a political party is indispensable to assure the triumph of the social Revolution and its supreme goal: the abolition of classes.

The coalition of forces of the working class, achieved by the economic struggle, should serve it as a lever in its struggle against the political power of the exploiters.

Given that the lords of land and capital always use their political privileges to defend and perpetuate their economic monopolies and to subjugate labor, the conquest of political power has become the great effort of the proletariat."

Or on the trade union struggle in Wages, Price and Profit:
The very development of modern industry must progressively turn the scale in favor of the capitalist against the working man, and that consequently the general tendency of capitalistic production is not to raise, but to sink the average standard of wages, or to push the value of labor more or less to its minimum limit. Since this is the tendency of things in this system, is this saying that the working class ought to renounce their resistance against the encroachments of capital, and abandon their attempts at making the best of the occasional chances for their temporary improvement? If they did, they would be degraded to one level mass of broken wretches past salvation. I think I have shown that their struggles for the standard of wages are incidents inseparable from the whole wages system, that in 99 cases out of 100 their efforts at raising wages are only efforts at maintaining the given value of labor, and that the necessity of debating their price with the capitalists is inherent in their condition of having to sell themselves as commodities. By cowardly giving way in their everyday conflict with capital, they would certainly disqualify themselves for the initiating of any larger movement.

At the same time, and quite apart from the general servitude involved in the wages system, the working class ought not to exaggerate to themselves the ultimate working of these everyday struggles. They ought not to forget that they are fighting with effects, but not with the causes of those effects; that they are retarding the downward movement, but not changing its direction; that they are applying palliatives, not curing the malady. They ought, therefore, not to be exclusively absorbed in these unavoidable guerrilla fights incessantly springing up from the never-ceasing encroachments of capital or changes of the market. They ought to understand that, with all the miseries it imposes upon them, the present system simultaneously engenders the material conditions and the social forms necessary for an economical reconstruction of society. Instead of the conservative motto, "A fair day's wage for a fair day's work!" they ought to inscribe on their banner the revolutionary watchword, "Abolition of the wages system!"

Trades Unions work well as centers of resistance against the encroachments of capital. They fail partially from an injudicious use of their power. They fail generally from limiting themselves to a guerrilla war against the effects of the existing system, instead of simultaneously trying to change it, instead of using their organized forces as a lever for the final emancipation of the working class, that is to say, the ultimate abolition of the wages system. [Wages, Price and Profits]

And on the revolution, consider what Engels said: "In politics there are only two decisive forces: the organized force of the State, the army, and the unorganized force, the basic force of the popular masses":

As a rule, after the first great success, the victorious minority became divided. One half was pleased with what had been gained, the other wanted to go still further, and put forward new demands, which, to a certain extent at least, were also in the real or apparent interests of the great mass of the people. In individual cases, these more radical demands were realized, but often only for the moment and the more moderate party again gained the upper hand. What had eventually been won was wholly or partly lost again and the vanquished shrieked of treachery, or ascribed their defeat to accident. But in truth, their position was mainly the achievements of the first victory and was only safeguarded by the second victory of the more radical party. As this was attained, the radicals and their achievements vanished once more from the stage.

All revolutions of modern times, beginning with the great English revolution of the seventeenth century, showed these features, which appeared inseparable from every revolutionary struggle. They appeared applicable, also to the struggles of the proletariat for its emancipation; all the more applicable, since in 1848, there were few people who had any idea of the direction in which this emancipation was to be sought. [MECW, Introduction to Class Struggle in France, Vol. 20, pp.148-9]

Marx himself said in the following paragraphs:

With the exception of a few short chapters every important part of the annals of the revolution from 1848 to 1849 carries the heading: Defeat of the revolution!

But what succumbed in these defeats was not the revolution. It was the pre-revolutionary traditional appendages, results of social relationships, which had not yet come to the point of sharp class antagonisms: persons, illusions, conceptions, projects, from which the revolutionary party before the February Revolution was not free, from which it could be freed, not by the victory of February, but only by a series of subsequent defeats.

In a word: revolutionary advance-made headway, not by its immediate tragicomic achievements, but on the contrary, by the creation of a powerful, united counterrevolution, by the creation of an opponent, and by fighting what the party of revolt first ripened into a real revolutionary party. [Marx, Class Struggle in France from 1848-1850, p. 33]

-Bourgeois revolutions, like those of the eighteenth century, storm swiftly from success to success, their dramatic effects outdo each other, men and things seem set in sparkling brilliance, ecstasy is the everyday spirit, but they are short-lived. Soon they have attained their zenith, and a long crapulent depression seizes society before it learns soberly to assimilate the results of its storm-and-stress period. On the other hand, proletarian revolutions, like those of the nineteenth century, criticize themselves constantly, interrupt themselves continually in their own course, come back to the apparently accomplished in order to begin it afresh, and deride with unmerciful thoroughness the inadequacies, weaknesses and paltriness of their first attempts. They seem to throw down their adversaries so that the latter may draw new strength from the earth and rise again more gigantic, before them, and recoil again and again from the indefinite prodigiousness of their own aims, until a situation has been created which makes all turning back impossible, and the conditions themselves cry out: Hic Rhodus, hic salta! Here is the rose, here dance! It means to show in deeds what you are able to do. [The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte, MECW, Vol. 11, pp. 106-7]

In every revolution there intrudes at the side of its true agents, men of a different nature. Some of them are survivors of and devotees to past revolutions, without insight into the present movement, but preserving popular influence by their known honesty and courage, or by the sheer force of tradition. Others are mere brawlers who, by way of repeating year after year the same set of stereotyped declarations against the government of the day, have sneaked into the reputation of revolutionists of the first kind. After March 18, some of these men did also turn up, and in some cases contrived to play preeminent parts. As far as their power went, they hampered the real action of the working class, exactly as men of that sort have hampered the full development of every previous revolution. They are an unavoidable evil: with time they are shaken off; but time was not allowed to the Commune. [The Civil War in France]

And on the same fundamental question of the class struggle, let us look at what Lenin established about not counterposing armed insurrections and trade union struggles since it is wrong theoretically to equate the two tasks as if they were on the same level: "The task of preparing for an armed uprising" and "the task of leading the trade union struggle." The one task is said to be in the forefront, the other in the background. To speak like that means comparing and contrasting things of a different order. The armed uprising is a method of political struggle at a given moment. The trade union struggle is one of the constant forms of the whole workers' movement, one always needed under capitalism and essential at all times. In a passage quoted by me in "What Is to Be Done?" Engels distinguishes three basic forms of the proletarian struggle: economic, political, and theoretical that is to say, trade union, political, and theoretical (scientific, ideological, and philosophical). How can one of these basic forms of struggle (the trade union form) be put on a level with a method of another basic form of struggle at a given moment? How can the whole trade union struggle, as a "task," be put on a level with the present and by far not the only method of political struggle. These are incommensurable things, something like adding tenths to hundredths without reducing them to a common denominator. In my opinion, both these points (the second and third) of the preamble should be deleted. Alongside "the task of leading the trade union struggle" can be put only the task of leading the general political struggle as a whole, the task of waging the general ideological struggle as a whole, and not some particular, given, modern tasks of the political or ideological struggle . . .

Tactically, the resolution in its present form puts the case for an armed uprising rather lamely. An armed uprising is the highest method of political struggle. Its success from the point of view of the proletariat, i.e., the success of a proletarian uprising under Social-Democratic leadership, and not of any other kind of uprising, requires extensive development of all aspects of the workers' movement. Hence the idea of contra posing the task of an uprising to the task of leading the trade union struggle is supremely incorrect. In this way the task of the uprising is played down, and belittled. Instead of summing up and crowning the entire workers' movement as a whole, the result is that the task of the uprising is dealt with as a thing apart . . .

The crux of the matter is not that trade unions are "narrow," but that this one aspect (and narrow just because it is one aspect) should be bound up with others. Consequently, these words should either be thrown out or further mention should be made of the need to establish and strengthen the connection between one aspect and all the others, the need to imbue the trade unions with Social-Democratic content, Social-Democratic propaganda, and to draw them into all Social-Democratic work, etc.

The trade unions could broaden the basis from which we shall draw strength for an uprising, so that, I say once again, it is erroneous to contra pose one to the other.

We must not stand aloof, and above all, not give any occasion for thinking that we ought to stand aloof, but endeavor to take part, to influence, etc. For there is a special section of workers, elderly family men, who will make very little contribution to the political struggle at present, but very much to the trade union struggle. We must make use of this section, merely guiding their steps in this field. It is important that at the very outset, Russian Social-Democrats should strike the right note in regard to the trade unions, and at once, create a tradition of Social-Democratic initiative in this matter, of Social-Democratic participation, of Social-Democratic leadership. In practice, of course, there may not be enough forces, but that is quite another question; even so, given the ability to make use of all the available forces, some will always be found for the trade unions as well. Forces have been found for writing a resolution on the trade unions, i.e., for ideological guidance, and that's the crux of the matter! [To S. I. Gusev, LCW, Vol. 34 pp. 355-359]

Or, speaking of the "new methods of teaching dogma," and "the truths of Marxism":

A revolutionary epoch is to the Social-Democrats what wartime is to an army. We must broaden the cadres of our army. We must advance them from peace strength to war strength. We must mobilize the reservists, recall the furloughed, and form new auxiliary corps, units, and services. We must not forget that in war, we necessarily and inevitably have to put up with less trained replacements, very often to replace officers with rank-and-file soldiers, and to speed up and simplify the promotion of soldiers to officers' rank.

To drop metaphor, we must considerably increase the membership of all Party and Party-connected organizations in order to be able to keep up to some extent with the stream of popular revolutionary energy which has been a hundredfold strengthened. This, it goes without saying, does not mean that consistent training and systematic instruction in the Marxist truths are to be left in the shade. We must, however, remember that at the present time, far greater significance in the matter of training and education attaches to the military operations, which teach the untrained precisely and entirely in our sense. We must remember that our "doctrinaire" faithfulness to Marxism is now being reinforced by the march of revolutionary events, which is everywhere furnishing object lessons to the masses and that all these lessons confirm precisely, our dogma. Hence, we do not speak about abandoning the dogma, or relaxing our distrustful and suspicious attitude towards the woolly intellectuals and the arid-minded revolutionaries. Quite the contrary. We speak about new methods of teaching dogma, in which it would be unpardonable for a Social-Democrat to forget. We speak of the importance for our day of using the object lessons of the great revolutionary events in order to convey not to study circles, as in the past, but to the masses our old "dogmatic" lessons that, for example, it is necessary in practice to combine terror with the uprising of the masses, or that behind the liberalism of the educated Russian society one must be able to discern the class interests of our bourgeoisie (cf. our polemics with the Socialists-Revolutionaries on this question in Vperyod, No. 3).

Thus, it is not a question of relaxing our Social-Democratic exactingness and our orthodox intransigence, but of strengthening both in new ways, by new methods of training. In wartime, recruits should get their training lessons directly from military operations. So tackle the new methods of training more boldly, Comrades! Forward, and organize more and more squads, send them into battle, recruit more young workers, extend the normal framework of all Party, organizations, from committees to factory groups, craft unions, and student circles! Remember that every moment of delay in this task will play into the hands of the enemies of Social-Democracy; for the new streams are seeking all immediate outlet, and if they do not find a Social-Democratic channel they will rush into a non-Social-Democratic channel. Remember that every practical step in the revolutionary movement will decidedly, inevitably give the young recruits a lesson in Social-Democratic science; for this science is based on an objectively correct estimation of the forces and tendencies of the various classes. However, the revolution itself is nothing but the breakup of old superstructures and the independent action of the various classes, each striving to erect the new superstructure in its own way. But do not debase our revolutionary science to the level of mere book dogma, do not vulgarize it with wretched phrases about tactics-as-process and organization-as-process, with phrases that seek to justify confusion, vacillation, and lack of initiative. Give more scope to all the diverse kinds of enterprise on the part of the most varied groups and circles, bearing in mind that, apart from our counsel and regardless of it, the relentless exigencies of the march of revolutionary event will keep them upon the correct course. It is an old maxim that in politics one often has to learn from the enemy. And at revolutionary moments the enemy always forces correct conclusions upon us in a particularly instructive and speedy manner. [New Tasks and New Forces, LCW, Vol. 8 pp. 216-218]

Outlining the necessity of "arduous preparatory actions":

Today you are given a ballot paper take it, learn to organize so as to use it as a weapon against your enemies, not as a means of getting cushy legislative jobs for men who cling to their parliamentary seats for fear of having to go to prison. Tomorrow your ballot paper is taken from you and you are given a rifle or a splendid and most up-to-date quick-firing gun take this weapon of death and destruction, pay no heed to the mawkish snivelers who are afraid of war; too much still remains in the world that must be destroyed with fire and sword for the emancipation of the working class. If anger and desperation grow among the masses, if a revolutionary situation arises, prepare to create new organizations and use these useful weapons of death and destruction against your own government and your own bourgeoisie.

That is not easy, to be sure. It will demand arduous preparatory activities and heavy sacrifices. This is a new form of organization and struggle that also has to be learnt, and knowledge is not acquired without errors and setbacks. This form of the class struggle stands in the same relation to participation in elections as an assault against a fortress stands in relation to maneuvering, marches, or lying in the trenches. It is not so often that history places this form of struggle on the order of the day, but then its significance is felt for decades to come. Days on which such method of struggle can and must be employed are equal to scores of years of other historical epochs. [The Collapse of the Second International, LCW, V. 21, pp. 253-254]

The proletariat and the people should also keep well in mind the following scientific conclusion:

An oppressed class which does not strive to learn to use arms, to acquire arms, only deserves to be treated like slaves. We cannot, unless we have become bourgeois pacifists or opportunists, forget that we are living in a class society from which there is no way out, nor can there be, save through the class struggle. In every class society, whether based on slavery, serfdom, or, as at present, wage-labor, the oppressor class is always armed. Not only the modern standing army, but even the modern militia--and even in the most democratic bourgeois republics, Switzerland, for instance--represents the bourgeoisie armed against the proletariat. That is such an elementary truth that is it hardly necessary to dwell upon it. Suffice it to point to the use of troops against strikers in all capitalist countries.

A bourgeoisie armed against the proletariat is one of the biggest fundamental and cardinal facts of modern capitalist society. And in face of this fact, revolutionary Social-Democrats are urged to "demand" "disarmament!" That is tantamount of complete abandonment of the class-struggle point of view, to renunciation of all thought of revolution. Our slogan must be: arming of the proletariat to defeat, expropriate and disarm the bourgeoisie. These are the only tactics possible for a revolutionary class, tactics that follow logically from, and are dictated by, the whole objective development of capitalist militarism. [Lenin, The Military Program of the Proletarian Revolution, Vol. 23]

Or their great theses, clearly valid, on imperialism, the process of the bourgeoisie, the current international situation and the era of war:

We have to begin with as precise and full a definition of imperialism as possible. Imperialism is a specific historical stage of capitalism. Its specific character is threefold, imperialism is:

  • 1) monopoly capitalism;
  • 2) parasitic, or decaying capitalism;
  • 3) moribund capitalism. [Imperialism and the Split in Socialism, LCW, V. 23, p. 105]

Imperialism is a continuation of the development of capitalism, its highest stage in a sense, a transition stage to socialism.

I cannot therefore see how the addition of an analysis of imperialism to the general analysis of the basic features of capitalism can be regarded as "mechanical." Imperialism, in fact, does not and cannot transform capitalism from top to bottom. Imperialism complicates and sharpens the contradictions of capitalism, it "ties up" monopoly with free competition, but it cannot do away with exchange, the market, competition, crises, etc.

Imperialism is moribund capitalism, capitalism which is dying but not dead. The essential feature of imperialism, by and large, is not monopolies pure and simple, but monopolies in conjunction with exchange, markets, competition, crises. [Materials Relating to the Revision of the Party Program, LCW, V. 24 p. 464]

The usual division into historical epochs . . . is the following: 1) 1789-1871; 2) 1871- 1914; 3) 1914-? Here, of course, as everywhere in Nature and society, the lines of division are conventional and variable, relative, not absolute. We take the most outstanding and striking historical events only approximately, as milestones in important historical movements. The first epoch from the Great French Revolution to the Franco- Prussian war is one of the rise of the bourgeoisie, of its triumph, of the bourgeoisie on the upgrade, an epoch of bourgeois-democratic movements in particular, an epoch of the rapid breakdown of the obsolete feudal-absolutist institutions. The second epoch is that of the full domination and decline of the bourgeoisie, on of transition from its progressive character towards reactionary and even ultra-reactionary finance capital. This is an epoch in which a new class--present-day democracy--is preparing and slowly mustering its forces. The third epoch, which has just set in, places the bourgeoisie in the same "position" as that in which the feudal lords found themselves during the first epochs. This is the epoch of imperialism and imperialist upheavals, as well as of upheavals stemming from the nature of imperialism.

The international conflicts in the three epochs have, in form, remained the same kind of international conflicts in those of the first epoch, but their social and class content has changed radically. The objective historical situation has grown quite different.

The place of the struggle of a rising capital, striving towards national liberation from feudalism, has been taken by the struggle waged against the new forces by the most reactionary finance capital, the struggle of a force that has exhausted and outlived itself and is heading downwards towards decay. The bourgeois-national state framework, which in the first epoch was the mainstay of the development of the productive forces of a humanity that was liberating itself from feudalism, has now, in the third epoch, become a hindrance to the further development of the productive forces. From a rising and progressive class the bourgeoisie has turned into a declining, decadent, and reactionary class. It is quite another class that is now on the upgrade on a broad historical scale. [Under a False Flag, LCW, V. 21, pp. 146,149]

Imperialism's economic relations constitute the core of the entire international situation as it now exists. Throughout the twentieth century, this new, highest and final stage of capitalism has taken shape. [Second Congress of the Communist International, LCW, V. 31, p. 215]

First, what is the cardinal ideal underlying our theses? It is the distinction between oppressed and oppressor nations. Unlike the Second International and bourgeois democracy, we emphasize this distinction. In this age of imperialism, it is particularly important for the proletariat and the Communist International to establish the concrete economic facts and to proceed from concrete realities, not from abstract postulates, in all colonial and national problems.

The characteristic feature of imperialism consists in the whole world, as we now see, being divided into a large number of oppressed nations and an insignificant number of oppressor nations, the latter possessing colossal wealth and powerful armed forces. [Ibid. LCW, V. 31, p. 240]

We have seen the many difficulties caused by the Civil War in Russia, and how this is becoming interwoven into a whole series of wars. Marxists have never forgotten that violence will inevitably accompany the bankruptcy of capitalism throughout its reach, up to the birth of the socialist society. This violence will fill an entire period of world history, and an entire era of the most varied wars: imperialist wars, civil wars within each country, combinations of one with the other, wars of liberation by the nations oppressed by imperialism, a diverse combination of these amongst the imperialist powers that will inevitably intervene with diverse alliances in this era of enormous trusts, state capitalist consortiums and military monopolies. This era--of gigantic bankruptcies, of massive decisions taken under pressure from military forces, of crisis--has begun. We can distinguish it clearly, but it is only the beginning." [On the Organizational Principles of the Party of the Proletariat]

And finally, these words on topics like:

Political indifference: "Political indifference is nothing more than political satiety. Whoever is fed up is 'indifferent' and 'insensitive' in the face of the problem of daily bread; but the hungry man will always be a 'party' man on this issue." Contradictions between the enemy and slogans: "The working class should take advantage of every possible vacillation of the government, as well as the discrepancies among the bourgeoisie and the reactionary camp in order to accentuate the pressure both in the field of economic struggle as well as in the political struggle. But the working class, precisely to take full advantage of theses situations, must maintain the integrity of its revolutionary slogans." Only the struggle can educate: "The true education of the masses can never be separated from the independent political struggle, and above all, from the revolutionary struggle of the masses themselves. Only struggle can educate the exploited class, only in struggle do they discover the volume of their force, widen their horizons, raise their capacity, clear their intelligence and forge their will." Economic struggle and the more backward strata: "From here it can be deduced with total clarity that only the economic struggle, only the struggle for the direct and immediate betterment of conditions, is capable of mobilizing the more backward strata of the exploited masses, of truly educating them and of converting them during a revolutionary epoch, in the course of a few months, into an army of political fighters." Trust only in the force of the class: "The fundamental principle, the first precept of every union movement, consists in the following: Don't trust the 'State', only trust the strength of your class. The State is the organization of the dominant class . . . Never confide in promises, confide only in the strength of the union and in the conscience of our class!" No one will help the poor unless the poor help themselves: "No one will help the poor if they remain isolated. No 'State' will help the wage worker in the field, the manual laborer [brasero], the journeyman, the poor peasant, the semi-proletarian, unless he helps himself. The first step for them is the independent class organization of the agricultural proletariat." Life itself teaches: "Life teaches. The real struggle is the one that best resolves the issues that until a short while ago were so much discusses."

To conclude this fundamental question of the class struggle, in the classic texts of Marxism we can see what Mao Tse-tung established about imperialism, a key theme developed by him. We begin with the nature of imperialism and reaction as a paper tiger: "All reactionaries are paper tigers. They appear terrible, but in reality they are not so powerful. Seen in perspective, it is not the reactionaries but the people who are truly powerful." And: "The United States is a paper tiger. Don't believe in it. It can be pierced in one blow. The revisionist Soviet Union is also a paper tiger." And on the double character of imperialism and reaction:

"Just as there is not a single thing in the world without a dual nature (this is the law of the unity of opposites), so imperialism and all reactionaries have a dual nature they are real tigers and paper, tigers at the same time. In past history before they won state power and for some time afterwards, the slave-owning class, the feudal landlord class and the bourgeoisie were vigorous, revolutionary, and progressive, they were real tigers. But with the lapse of time, because their opposites (the slave class, the peasant class and the proletariat)grew in strength step by step, the struggle against ruling classes changed step by step changed into backward people, changed into paper dyers. were overthrown, or will be overthrown, by the people. The reactionary, backward, decaying classes retained this dual nature even in their last life-and-death struggles against the people. On the one hand, they were real dyers; they ate people, ate people by the millions and tens of millions. The cause of the people's struggle went through a period of difficulties and hardships, and along the path there were many twists and turns. To destroy the rule of imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat-capitalism in China took the Chinese people more than a hundred years and cost them tens of millions of lives before the victory in 1949. Look! Were these not living tigers, iron tigers, real dyers? But in the end they changed into paper tigers, dead tigers, bean-curd dyers. These are historical facts. Have people not seen or heard about these facts? There have indeed been thousands and tens of thousands of them! Thousands and tens of thousands! Hence imperialism and all reactionaries, looked at in essence, from a long-term point of view, from a strategic point of view, must be seen for what they are paper tigers. On this we should build our strategic thinking. On the other hand, they are also living dyers, iron dyers, real tigers which can eat people. On this we should build our tactical thinking." [Intervention at a meeting of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China held at Wuchang, SW, Vol. 4, Talk With the American Correspondent Anna Louise Strong, August 1946]

On the law of imperialism, and as a counterpart, the law of the people:

Make trouble, fail, make trouble again, fail again . . . till their doom; that is the logic of the imperialists and all reactionaries the world over in dealing with the people's cause. They will never go against this logic. This is a Marxist law. When we say "imperialism is ferocious," we mean that its nature will never change, that the imperialists will never lay down their butcher knives, that they will never become Buddhas, till their doom.

Fight, fail, fight again, fail again, fight again . . . till their victory; that is the logic of the people, and they too will never go against this logic. This is another Marxist law. The Russian people's revolution followed this law, and so has the Chinese people's revolution. [Cast Away Illusions, Prepare for Struggle, SW V. 4, p. 428]

On how the people of the world don't need imperialism:

All oppressed nations want independence.

Everything is subject to change. The big decadent forces will give way to the small newborn forces. The small forces will change into big forces because the majority of the people demand this change The U.S. imperialist forces will change from big to small because the American people, too, are dissatisfied with their government.

Chiang Kai-shek's rule in China was recognized by the governments of all countries and lasted twenty-two years, and his forces were the biggest. Our forces were small, fifty thousand Party members at first but only a few thousand after counterrevolutionary suppressions. The enemy made trouble everywhere. Again this law the big and strong end up in defeat because they are divorced from the people, whereas the small and weak emerge victorious because they are linked with the people and work in their interest. That's how things turned out in the end.

During the anti-Japanese war, Japan was very powerful, the Kuomintang troops were driven to the hinterland, and the armed forces led by the Communist Party could only conduct guerrilla warfare in the rural areas behind the enemy lines. Japan occupied large Chinese cities such as Peking, Tientsin, Shanghai, Nanking, Wuhan and Canton. Nevertheless, like Germany's Hitler, the Japanese militarists collapsed m a few years, in accordance with the same law.

We underwent innumerable difficulties and were driven from the south to the north, while our forces fell from several hundred thousand Strong to a few tens of thousands. At the end of the 25,000-li Long March we had only 25,000 men left.

Now U.S. imperialism is quite powerful, but in reality it isn't. It is very weak politically because it is divorced from the masses of the people and is disliked by everybody and by the American people too. In appearance it is very powerful but in reality it is nothing to be afraid of, it is a paper tiger. Outwardly a tiger, it is made of paper, unable to withstand the wind and the rain. I believe that the United States is nothing but a paper tiger.

History as a whole, the history of class society for thousands of years, has proved this point: the strong must give way to the weak. This holds true for the Americas as well.

Only when imperialism is eliminated can peace prevail. The day will come when the paper tigers will be wiped out. But they won't become extinct of their own accord, they need to be battered by the wind and the rain.

When we say U.S. imperialism is a paper tiger, we are speaking in terms of strategy. Regarding it as a whole, we must despise it. But regarding each part, we must take it seriously. It has claws and fangs. We have to destroy it piecemeal. For instance, if it has ten fangs, knock off one the first time, and there will be nine left; knock off another, and there will be eight left. When all the fangs are gone, it will still have claws. If we deal with it step by step and in earnest, we will certainly succeed in the end.

Strategically, we must utterly despise U.S. imperialism. Tactically, we must take it seriously. In struggling against it, we must take each battle, each encounter, seriously. At present, the United States is powerful, but when looked at in a broader perspective, as a whole and from a long-term viewpoint, it has no popular support. Its policies are disliked by the people, because they oppresses and exploit them. For this reason, the tiger is doomed. Therefore, it is nothing to be afraid of and can be despised. But today the United States still has strength, turning out more than 100 million tons of steel a year and hitting out everywhere. That is why we must continue to wage struggles against it, fight it with all our might, and wrest one position after another from it. And that takes time.

It seems that the countries of the Americas, Asia and Africa will have to go on quarreling with the United States till the very end, till the paper tiger is destroyed by the wind and the rain.

To oppose U.S. imperialism, people of European origin in the Latin-American countries should unite with the indigenous Indians. Perhaps the white immigrants from Europe can be divided into two groups, one composed of rulers and the other of ruled. This should make it easier for the group of oppressed white people to get close to the local people, for their position is the same.

Our friends in Latin America, Asia and Africa are in the same position as we and are doing the same kind of work, that is that they are doing something for the people to lessen their oppression by imperialism. If we do a good job, we can root out imperialist oppression. In this we are comrades.

We are of the same nature as you in our opposition to imperialist oppression, differing only in geographical position, nationality and language. But we are different in nature from imperialism, and the very sight of it makes us sick.

What use is imperialism? The Chinese people will have none of it, nor will the people in the rest of the world. There is no reason for the existence of imperialism. [U.S. Imperialism is a Paper Tiger, V. V, pp. 308-310]

On war as " a continuation of politics and the solution to the problem of the seizure and defense of power," we begin with the inevitable condition of revolution and revolutionary war in class society:

War is the highest form of struggle for resolving contradictions, when they have been developed to a certain stage, between classes, nations, states, or political groups, and it has existed ever since the emergence of private property and of classes. Unless you understand the actual circumstances of war, its nature and its relations to other things, you will not know the laws of war, or know how to direct war, or be able to win victory. [Strategy in China's Revolutionary War, SW V. I, p. 180]

It enables us to understand that revolutions and revolutionary wars are inevitable in class society and that without them, it is impossible to accomplish and leap in social development and to overthrow the reactionary ruling classes and therefore impossible for the people to win political power. [On Contradiction, SW V. I, p. 344]

History shows that wars are divided into two kinds, just and unjust. All wars that are progressive are just, and all wars that impede progress are unjust. We Communists oppose all unjust wars that impede progress, but we do not oppose progressive, just wars. Not only do we Communists not oppose just wars, we actively participate in them. [On Protracted War, SW V. II, p. 150]

War, this monster of mutual slaughter among men, will be finally eliminated by the progress of human society, and in the not too distant future too. But there is only one way to eliminate it and that is to oppose war with war, to oppose counterrevolutionary war with revolutionary war, to oppose national counterrevolutionary war with national revolutionary war, and to oppose counterrevolutionary class war with revolutionary class war. [Strategy in China's Revolutionary War, SW V. I, pp. 182-3]

Regarding the positive side of war: "A great revolution must go through a civil war. Thisis a rule. And to see the ills of war but not its benefits is a one-sided view. It is of no use to the people's revolution to speak onesidedly of the destructiveness of war. [Critique, pp. 49-50] Confronting the reactionary position of focusing on weapons: "This is the so-called theory that 'weapons decide everything', which constitutes a mechanical approach to the question of war and a subjective and one-sided view. Our view is opposed to this; we see not only weapons but also people. Weapons are an important factor in war, but not the decisive factor; it is people, not things, that are decisive. The contest of strength is not only a contest of military and economic power, but also a contest of human power and morale. Military and economic power is necessarily wielded by people." [SW, Vol. II, pp. 143-144] Equivalently: "Since history began, revolutionary wars have always been won by those whose weapons were deficient, lost by those with the advantage in weapons. During our civil war, our War of Resistance Against Japan, and our War of Liberation, we lacked nationwide political power and modernized arsenals. If one cannot fight unless one has the most modern weapons, that is the same as disarming one's self." [Critique, pg. 91]

Highlighting conscious activity in military activity, Chairman Mao established:

It is a human characteristic to exercise a conscious dynamic role. Man strongly displays this characteristic in war. True, victor; or defeat in war is decided by the military, political, economic and geographical conditions on both sides, the nature of the war each side is waging and the international support each enjoys, but it is not decided by these alone; in themselves, all these provide only the possibility of victory or defeat but do not decide the issue. To decide the issue, subjective effort must be added, namely, the directing and waging of war, man's conscious dynamic role in war.

In seeking victory, those who direct a war cannot overstep the limitations imposed by the objective conditions; within these limitations, however, they can and must play a dynamic role in striving for victory. The stage of action for commanders in a war must be built upon objective possibilities, but on that stage they can direct the performance of many a drama, full of sound and color, power and grandeur. Given the objective material foundations, the commanders in the anti-Japanese war should display their prowess and marshal all their forces to crush the national enemy, transform the present situation in which our country and society are suffering from aggression and oppression, and create a new China of freedom and equality. Here is where our subjective faculties for directing war can and must be exercised. We do not want any of our commanders in the war to detach themselves from the objective conditions and become a blundering hothead, but we decidedly want every commander to become a general who is both bold and sagacious. Our commanders should have not only the boldness to overwhelm the enemy, but also the ability to remain masters of the situation throughout the changes and vicissitudes of the entire war. Swimming in the ocean of war, they must not flounder but make sure of reaching the opposite shore with measured strokes. Strategy and tactics, as the laws for directing war, constitute the art of swimming in the ocean of war. [On Protracted War, SW V. II, p. 152]

With respect to the atomic bomb ("a paper tiger"), atomic blackmail and world war:

We have two principles: first, we don't want war; second, we will strike back resolutely if anyone invades us. This is what we teach the members of the Communist Party and the whole nation. The Chinese people are not to be cowed by U.S. atomic blackmail. Our country has a population of 600 million and an area of 9,600,000 square kilometers. The United States cannot annihilate the Chinese nation with its small stack of atom bombs. Even if the U.S. atom bombs were so powerful, but when they are dropped on China, they would make a hole right through the earth, or even blow it up. That would hardly mean anything to the universe as a whole, though it might be a major event for the solar system.

We have an expression, millet plus rifles. In the case of the United States' it is planes plus the A-bomb. However, if the United States with its planes plus the A-bomb is to launch a war of aggression against China, then China with its millet plus rifles is sure to emerge the victor. The people of the whole world will support us. As a result of World War I, the tsar, the landlords and the capitalists in Russia were wiped out; as a result of World War II, Chiang Kai-shek and the landlords were overthrown in China and the East European countries and a number of countries in Asia were liberated. Should the United States launch a third world war and supposing it lasted eight or ten years, the result would be the elimination of the ruling classes in the United States, Britain and the other accomplice countries, and the transformation of most of the world into countries led by Communist Parties. World wars end not in favor of the warmongers, but in favor of the Communist Parties and the revolutionary people in all lands. If the warmongers are to make war, then they mustn't blame us for making revolution or engaging in "subversive activities," as they keep saying all the time. If they desist from war, they can survive a little longer on this earth. But the sooner they make war, the sooner they will be wiped out from the face of the earth. Then a people's United Nations would be set up, maybe in Shanghai, maybe somewhere in Europe, or it might be set up again in New York, provided the U.S. warmongers had been wiped out.

A firm position linked to the great call: "People of the world, let us unite and oppose the war of aggression unleashed by any imperialist or social-imperialist power, especially opposing any war of aggression in which atomic bombs are used! If this breaks out, the peoples of the entire world must eliminate it with revolutionary war, and we should prepare for this right now!" And this thesis of transcendental importance: "With respect to the issue of world war there are only two possibilities: either war will cause revolution to break out, or revolution will impede war."

Finally, on this point, the center of the military theory and practice of Marxism-Leninism- Maoism is People's War, outlined in the following terms. In "On Coalition Government," his point of departure is the army of a new type, under the leadership of a true Communist Party, is the only army capable of developing it:

This army is powerful because all its members have a discipline based on political consciousness; they have come together and they fight not for the private interests of a few individuals or a narrow clique, but for the interests of the broad masses and of the whole nation. The sole purpose of this army is to stand firmly with the Chinese people and to serve them wholeheartedly.

Guided by this purpose, this army has an indomitable spirit and is determined to vanquish all enemies and never to yield. No matter what the difficulties and hardships, so long as a single man remains, he will fight on and on.

Guided by this purpose, this army has achieved remarkable unity in its own ranks and with those outside its ranks. Internally, there is unity between officers and men, between the higher and lower ranks, and between military work, political work and rear service work. Externally, there is unity between the army and the people, between the army and government organizations, and between our army and the friendly armies. It is imperative to overcome anything that impairs this unity.

Guided by this purpose, this army has a correct policy for winning over enemy officers and men and for dealing with prisoners of war. Without exception all members of the enemy forces who surrender, who come over to our side or who, after laying down their arms, wish to lam m fighting the common foe, are welcomed and given proper education. It is forbidden to kill, maltreat or insult any prisoner of war.

Guided by this purpose, this army has built up a system of strategy and tactics which is essential for the people's war. It is stilled in flexible guerrilla warfare conducted in accordance with the changing concrete conditions and is also skilled in mobile warfare.

Guided by this purpose, this army has built up a system of political work which is essential for the people's war and is aimed at promoting unity in its own ranks, unity with the friendly armies and unity with the people, and at disintegrating the enemy forces and ensuring victory in battle.

Guided by this purpose, the entire army, operating under conditions of guerrilla warfare, is able to utilize, and has in fact utilized, the intervals between battles and between training periods to produce grain and other necessities, thus becoming wholly, half or at least partly self-supporting, so that economic difficulties are overcome, living conditions improved and the burden on the people lightened. Every possibility has been exploited to establish a number of small-scale armament works in various military base areas.

Furthermore, this army is powerful because it has the people's self-defense corps and the militia the vast armed organizations of the masses fighting in coordination with it. In the Liberated Areas of China all men and women, from youth to middle age, are organized in the people's anti-Japanese self-defense corps on a voluntary and democratic basis and without giving up their work in production. The cream of the self-defense corps, except for those who join the army or the guerrilla units, is brought into the militia. Without the cooperation of these armed forces of the masses it would be impossible to defeat the enemy. Finally, this army is powerful because of its division into two parts, the main forces and the regional forces, with the former available for operations in any region whenever necessary and the latter concentrating on defending their own localities and attacking the enemy there in cooperation with the local militia and the self-defense corps. This division of labor has won the wholehearted support of the people. Without this correct division of labor if, for example, attention were paid only to the role of the main forces while that of the regional forces were neglected it would likewise be impossible to defeat the enemy in the conditions obtaining in China's Liberated Areas. Under the regional forces, numerous armed working teams have been organized, which are well trained and hence better qualified for military, political and mass work. They penetrate into the rearmost areas behind the enemy lines, strike at the enemy and arouse the masses to anti-Japanese struggle, thus giving support to the frontal military operations of the various Liberated Areas. In all this they have achieved great success.

Under the leadership of their democratic governments, all the anti-Japanese people in the Liberated Areas of China are called upon to join organizations of workers, peasants, youth and women, and cultural, professional and other organizations, which will wholeheartedly perform various tasks in support of the armed forces. These tasks are not limited to rallying the people to join the army, transporting grain for it, caring for soldiers' families and helping the troops in meeting their material needs. They also include mobilizing the guerrilla units, militia and self-defense corps to make widespread raids and lay land mines against the enemy, gather intelligence about him, comb out traitors and spies, transport and protect the wounded and take direct part in the army's operations. At the same time, the people in all the Liberated Areas are enthusiastically taking up various kinds of political, economic, cultural and health work. The most important thing in this connection is to mobilize everybody for the production of grain and other necessities and to ensure that all government institutions and schools, except in special cases, devote their free time to production for their own support in order to supplement the self-sufficiency production campaigns of the army and the people and thus help to create a great upsurge of production to sustain the protracted War of Resistance. In China's Liberated Areas, the enemy has wrought great havoc, and floods, droughts and damage by insect pests have been frequent. However, the democratic governments there have been leading the people in overcoming these difficulties in an organized way, and unprecedented results have been achieved by the great mass campaigns for pest extermination, flood control and disaster relief, thus making it possible to persevere in the protracted War of Resistance. In a word, everything for the front, everything for the defeat of the Japanese aggressors and for the liberation of the Chinese people this is the general slogan, the general policy for the whole army and the whole people in the Liberated Areas of China.

Such is a real people's war. Only by waging such a people's war can we defeat the national enemy. The Kuomintang has failed precisely because of its desperate opposition to a people's war.

Once it is equipped with modern weapons, the army of China's Liberated Areas will become still more powerful and will be able to accomplish the final defeat of the Japanese aggressors. [On Coalition Government, SW V. III, pp. 214-7]

Within this same fundamental question of class struggle, let us see another basic theme of Chairman Mao's: masses and revolution. Let us take the following principled positions of Maoism as a point of departure: "Marxism consists of thousands of truths, but they can all be reduced to a single one: 'It is right to rebel'. For thousands of years it was said that oppression and exploitation is justified and that it is wrong to rebel. This verdict was only reversed with the appearance of Marxism. It is a great contribution. It was through struggle that the proletariat learned this truth, and Marx reached this conclusion. From this truth follows resistence, struggle and battle for socialism." "The Internationale and the article by Lenin completely express a Marxist point of view and conception of the world. What they say is that the slaves must rise up and struggle for the truth. There has never been a supreme savior, nor can we attach ourselves to gods or emperors. Our salvation is to rely completely upon ourselves. Who has created the world of men? Us, the working masses . . . " "The people, and only the people, are the motive force that makes world history." "Under the leadership of the Communist Party, as long as people exist, all kinds of miracles can be achieved." "To go against the current is a principle of Marxism- Leninism." "Classes struggle, some emerge victorious, others are eliminated. That is the way of history, that is the history of civilization of the last few millennia. The interpretation of history from this point of view is historical materialism. The opposite point of view is historical idealism." And: "Communists will never renounce their ideal of socialism and communism."

On the proletariat, the last class in history: "The proletariat is the greatest class in the history of humanity"; "apply the teachings of Marx that only by emancipating all of humanity can the proletariat reach its own final emancipation"; "we should base ourselves on the working class with all our hearts"; "the working class should lead everything." "For its part, the working class should constantly raise its political conscience in the course of its struggle." And: "The working class will transform all of society in the class struggle and in the struggle against nature; at the same time, it will itself be transformed. The working class must learn without ceasing to work, overcoming its deficiencies bit by bit, and must never get bogged down."

On the peasantry, principally the poor peasants, and their struggle:

This is what some people call "going too far," or "exceeding the proper limits in righting a wrong," or "really too much." Such talk may seem plausible, but in fact it is wrong. First, the local tyrants, evil gentry and lawless landlords have themselves driven the peasants to this.

For ages they have used their power to tyrannize over the peasants and trample them underfoot; that is why the peasants have reacted so strongly. The most violent revolts and the most serious disorders have invariably occurred in places where the local tyrants, evil gentry and lawless landlords perpetrated the worst outrages. The peasants are clear- sighted. Who is bad and who is not, who is the worst and who is not quite so vicious, who deserves severe punishment and who deserves to be let off lightly the peasants keep dear accounts, and very seldom has the punishment exceeded the crime. Secondly, a revolution is not a dinner party, or writing an essay, or painting a picture, or doing embroidery; it cannot be so refined, so leisurely and gentle, so temperate, kind, courteous, restrained and magnanimous. A revolution is an insurrection, an act of violence by which one class overthrows another. A rural revolution is a revolution by which the peasantry overthrows the power of the feudal landlord class. Without using the greatest force, the peasants cannot possibly overthrow the deep-rooted authority of the landlords which has lasted for thousands of years. The rural areas need a mighty revolutionary upsurge, for it alone can rouse the people in their millions to become a powerful force. All the actions mentioned here which have been labeled as "going too far" flow from the power of the peasants, which has been called forth by the mighty revolutionary upsurge in the countryside. It was highly necessary for such things to be done in the second period of the peasant movement, the period of revolutionary action. In this period it was necessary to establish the absolute authority of the peasants. It was necessary to forbid malicious criticism of the peasant associations. It was necessary to overthrow the whole authority of the gentry, to strike them to the ground and keep them there. There is revolutionary significance in all the actions which were labeled as "going too far" in this period. To put it bluntly, it is necessary to create terror for a while in every rural area, or otherwise it would be impossible to suppress the activities of the counter-revolutionaries in the countryside or overthrow the authority of the gentry. Proper limits have to be exceeded in order to right a wrong, or else the wrong cannot be righted. Those who talk about the peasants "going too far" seem at first sight to be different from those who say "It's terrible!" as mentioned earlier, but in essence they proceed from the same standpoint, and likewise voice a landlord theory that upholds the interests of the privileged classes. Since this theory impedes the rise of the peasant movement and so disrupts the revolution, we must firmly oppose it.

In short, all those whom the gentry had despised, those whom they had trodden into the dirt, people with no place in society, people with no right to speak, have now audaciously lifted up their heads. They have not only lifted up their heads but taken power into their hands. They are now running the township peasant associations (at the lowest level), which they have turned into something fierce and formidable. They have raised their rough, work-soiled hands and laid them on the gentry. They tether the evil gentry with ropes, crown them with tall paper-hats and parade them through the villages. (In Hsiangtan and Hsianghsiang they call this "parading through the township" and in Liling "parading through the fields.") Not a day passes but they drum some harsh, pitiless words of denunciation into these gentry's ears. They are issuing orders and are running everything. Those who used to rank lowest now rank above everybody else; and so this is called "turning things upside down."

We said above that the peasants have accomplished a revolutionary task which had been left unaccomplished for many years and have done an important job for the national revolution. But has this great revolutionary task, this important revolutionary work, been performed by all the peasants? No. There are three kinds of peasants, the rich, the middle and the poor peasants.

The poor peasants have always been the main force in the bitter fight in the countryside. They have fought militantly through the two periods of underground work and of open activity. They are the most responsive to Communist Party leadership. They are deadly enemies of the camp of the local tyrants and evil gentry and attack it without the slightest hesitation. "We joined the peasant association long ago," they say to the rich peasants, "why are you still hesitating?" The rich peasants answer mockingly, "What is there to keep you from joining? You people have neither a tile over your heads nor a speck of land under your feet!" It is true the poor peasants are not afraid of losing anything. Many of them really have "neither a tile over their heads nor a speck of land under their feet." What, indeed, is there to keep them from joining the associations? ... This great mass of poor peasants, or together 70 per cent of the rural population, are the backbone of the peasant associations, the vanguard in the overthrow of the feudal forces and the heroes who have performed the great revolutionary task which for long years was left undone. Without the poor peasant class (the "riffraff," as the gentry call them), it would have been impossible to bring about the present revolutionary situation in the countryside, or to overthrow the local tyrants and evil gentry and complete the democratic revolution. The poor peasants, being the most revolutionary group, have gained the leadership of the peasant associations . . . Leadership by the poor peasants is absolutely necessary. Without the poor peasants there would be no revolution. To deny their role is to deny the revolution. To attack them is to attack the revolution. They have never been wrong on the general direction of the revolution. [Report on an Investigation of the Peasant Movement in Hunan, SW, V. I, pp. 28-33]

Chairman Mao Tse-tung outlined that the class struggle had entered into a "great era of radical change"; this thesis of capital importance should guide our struggle and consequently, we should take from Maoism everything that serves this end. Thus, our point of departure should be what he established in 1962: "the next 50 to 100 years from today, more or less, will be a great era of radical change of the world's social system, an era that will shake the world, an era which no other previous historical epoch will be comparable. Living in this era, we must be prepared to unleash great struggles that will have many different characteristics from previous forms of struggle." Within this era he characterized the perspectives for imperialism and the tasks of the peoples of the world in the following way:

The imperialists will not live long because they insist in perpetrating all manner of evil deeds. They dedicate themselves exclusively to supporting the unpopular reactionaries of the different countries. They invade and forcibly occupy many colonies, semi-colonies and establish military bases. They threaten peace with atomic war. In this way, the imperialists have forced over 90 percent of the inhabitants of the world to stand up and struggle against them or prepare to do so. Today the imperialists still exist, they even hold the whip in Asia, Africa and Latin America. In the West, they even oppress the broad masses of their own countries. This situation needs to change. To end the aggression and oppression committed by imperialism, particularly U.S. imperialism, is the task of the peoples of the whole world. [To the Correspondents of Xinjua Agency]

In the same way, he defines a new period of history: "Soviet revisionism and North American imperialism, scheming amongst themselves, have perpetrated so many infamies and evils that the revolutionary people of the whole world will not let them have impunity. The peoples of all nations are rising up. We have entered into a new historic period of struggle against North American imperialism and Soviet revisionism." This era and its concrete conditions demand that we attach the pertinent importance to the contradictions between the imperialist countries:

Struggles among the respective imperialists should be seen as a major thing. That is how Lenin saw them and Stalin too, something they called the indirect reserve force of the revolution. In getting the revolutionary base areas going China enjoyed this advantageous circumstance. In the past we had contradictions among various factions of the landlord and comprador classes. Behind these domestic contradictions lay contradictions among the imperialists. It was because of these contradictions among the imperialists that only a part of the enemy rather than all of them would do battle with us directly in a particular time, so long as we utilized the contradictions properly. In addition, we usually had time to rest and reorganize.

Contradictions among the imperialists was one important reason why the October Revolution could be consolidated. Fourteen nations sent intervention forces at the time. But none alone sent much. Moreover, their purposes were not coordinated. They were engaged in intrigues. During the Korean war American purposes were not coordinated with those of their allies. The war was not fought on the largest scale. Not only could America not determine its own course, France and England were also not so eager.

Internationally the bourgeoisie are now extremely uneasy, afraid of any wind that might stir the grass. Their level of alertness is high, but they are in disarray. Since the Second World War, the economic crises in capitalist society are different from those of Marx's day. Generally speaking, they used to come every seven, eight or ten years. During the fourteen years between the end of the Second World War and 1959 there were three.

At present the international scene is far more tense than after the First World War, when capitalism still had a period of relative stability, and the revolution had failed everywhere except Russia. England and France were full of high spirits and the various national bourgeoisies were not all that afraid of the Soviet Union. Aside from the taking away of Germany's colonies the entire imperialist colonial system was still intact. After the Second World War three of the defeated imperialists collapsed. England and France were weakened and in decline. Socialist revolution had triumphed in over ten countries. The colonial system was breaking apart. The capitalist world would never again enjoy the relative stability it had after the First World War. [A Critique of Soviet Economics, pp. 125-6]

It is within this framework and its characteristics that Chairman Mao proposed his thesis that "three worlds delineate themselves," realized in this manner in 1974: "In my judgment, the U.S. and the Soviet Union constitute the first world; intermediate forces like Japan, Europe and Canada make up the second world, and we form part of the third world." "The third world comprises a huge population. All of Asia except Japan belongs to the third world; all of Africa and Latin America also belong to it." This thesis is absolutely opposed to the revisionist "three worlds theory" of Deng and his gang. The thesis that "three worlds delineate themselves" is tied to positions upheld by Chairman Mao in 1946, in his "Conversations with Anna Louise Strong": "The U.S. and the Soviet Union are separated by a wide zone in which there are many capitalist, colonial and semi-colonial countries in Europe, Asia and Africa. Until the North American reactionaries have subjugated these countries, there can be no talk about an attack on the Soviet Union." And in 1957, in "Talk at a Conference of Secretaries":

Third, the international situation. In the Middle East, there was that Suez Canal incident. A man called Nasser nationalized the canal, another called Eden sent in an invading army, and close on his heels came a third called Eisenhower who decided to drive the British out and have the place all to himself. The British bourgeoisie, past masters of machination and manoeuver, are a class which knows best when to compromise. But this time they bungled and let the Middle East fall into the hands of the Americans. What a colossal mistake! Can one kind many such mistakes in the history of the British bourgeoisie? How come this time they lost their heads and made such a mistake? Because the pressure exerted by the United States was too much and they lost control of themselves in their anxiety to regain the Middle East and block the United States. Did Britain direct the spearhead chiefly at Egypt? No. Britain's moves were against the United States, much as the moves of the United States were against Britain.

From this incident we can pinpoint the focus of struggle in the world today. The contradiction between the imperialist countries and the socialist countries is certainly most acute. But the imperialist countries are now contending with each other for the control of different areas in the name of opposing communism. What areas are they contending for? Areas in Asia and Africa inhabited by 1,000 million people. At present their contention converges on the Middle East, an area of great strategic significance, and particularly on Egypt's Suez Zone. In the Middle East, two kinds of contradictions and three kinds of forces are in conflict. The two kinds of contradiction are: first, those between different imperialist powers, that is, between the United States and Britain and between the United States and France and, second, those between the imperialist powers and the oppressed nations. The three kinds of forces are: one, the United States, the biggest imperialist power, two, Britain and France, second-rate imperialist powers, and three, the oppressed nations. Asia and Africa are today the main areas of imperialist contention. National independence movements have emerged in these regions. The methods the United States employs are now violent, now nonviolent is the game it is playing in the Middle East. [Talks at a Conference of Secretaries of Provincial, Municipal, and Autonomous Region Part Committees, SW V. 5, pp. 361-2]

Finally, on the fundamental question of class struggle, particularly in this "great era," let us see how we follow Maoism to outline the struggle for revolution serving socialism and communism, the great unavoidable goal of humanity:

Communism is at once a complete system of proletarian ideology and a new social system. It is different from any other ideology or social system, and is the most complete, progressive, revolutionary and rational system in human history. [On New Democracy, SW V. II, p. 360]


Socialism will end by replacing the capitalist system; this is an objective law, independent of the will of man. No matter how much the reactionaries try to stop the wheel of history, sooner or later the revolution will arrive, and without any doubt, it will triumph." [Speech at the Meeting of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR in Commemoration of the Great October Revolution.]

This is the necessary point of departure to which the necessity of the Communist Party should be added:

If there is to be revolution, there must be a revolutionary party. Without a revolutionary party, without a party built on the Marxist-Leninist revolutionary theory and in the Marxist- Leninist revolutionary style, it is impossible to lead the working class and the broad masses of the people to defeat imperialism and its running dogs. In the more than one hundred years since the birth of Marxism, it was only through the example of the Russian Bolsheviks in leading the October Revolution, in leading socialist construction and in defeating fascist aggression that revolutionary parties of a new type were formed and developed in the world. With the birth of revolutionary parties of this type, the face of the world revolution has changed. The change has been so great that transformations utterly inconceivable to people of the older generation have come into being amid fire and thunder. The Communist Party of China is a party built and developed on the model of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. With the birth of the Communist Party of China, the face of the Chinese revolution '' took on an altogether new aspect. Is this fact not clear enough? [Revolutionary Forces of the World Unite, Fight Against Imperialist Aggression!, SW V. IV, p. 284]

Today, such a Party cannot be only Marxist-Leninist but must be Marxist-Leninist-Maoist. A Party that should guide itself by: "The correctness or otherwise of the ideological and political line decides everything. When the Party's line is correct, we have everything. If we lack men, then we will have them; if we lack guns, we will find them; if we don't have power, we will conquer it. If the line is incorrect, we will lose what we have conquered." A Party that has to keep in mind that: "To overthrow political power it is always necessary, before anything else, to create public opinion and work on the ideological level. This is how revolutionary classes proceed as well as counterrevolutionary classes." Thus, upon leading the revolution: "When its existence is threatened, the exploiting class will always use violence. From the moment they foresee a revolution they make every effort to annihilate it through violence . . . The exploiting class does not use only violence to fight against the people's regime after the establishment of revolutionary power by a people. They also use violence to repress the revolutionary people from the moment in which they start to seize power." And: "All reactionaries aim to eliminate the revolution by mass killings and think that the more people they kill the weaker the revolution becomes. But despite this subjective view of the reactionaries, facts show that the more people the reactionaries kill, the greater is the force of the revolution and the closer the reactionaries are to their end. This is an ineluctable law." And principally that: "All the revolutionary struggles of the world have as their objective the taking and consolidation of power."and "All reactionary forces invariably unleash agonizing struggles as they approach their extinction." "The oppressed peoples and nations should not, in any way, entrust their liberation to the 'sensibility' of imperialism and its lackeys. They can only achieve their victory by strengthening their unity and persevering in the struggle." "Peoples of the world, have courage, dare to struggle, challenge difficulties and advance in waves, and in this way the entire world will belong to the people. Each and every one of the monsters will be liquidated."

A Party that:

Policy is the starting-point of all the practical actions of a revolutionary party and manifests itself in the process and the end-result of that party's actions. A revolutionary party is carrying out a policy whenever it takes any action. If it is not carrying out a correct policy, it is carrying out a wrong policy; if it is not carrying out a given policy consciously, it is doing so blindly. What we call experience is the process and the end-result of carrying out a policy. Only through the practice of the people, that is, through experience, can we verify whether a policy is correct or wrong and determine to what extent it is correct or wrong. But people's practice, especially the practice of a revolutionary party and the revolutionary masses, cannot but be related to one policy or another. Therefore, before any action is taken, we must explain the policy, which we have formulated in the light of the given circumstances, to Party members and to the masses. Otherwise, Party members and the masses will depart from the guidance of our policy, act blindly and will carry out a wrong policy. [On the Policy Concerning Industry and Commerce, V. IV, p. 204-5]

In that construction we submit to what Chairman Mao established: "The forms of revolutionary organizations should serve the necessities of the revolutionary struggle. When an organizational form no longer accords with the necessities of the struggle, it should be abolished"; and "organizational tasks should be subordinated to political tasks." And the great orientation: "The united front, the armed struggle and the construction of the Party constitute the three fundamental questions that confront our Party in the Chinese revolution. The correct understanding of these three questions and their interconnections is equivalent to correctly leading the entire Chinese revolution." And conceiving the Party as a contradiction, it must be developed in the midst of the two-line struggle in its heart, subjecting itself to: "Either the East wind prevails over the West, or the West wind prevails over the East; there is no room for conciliation in the question of the two lines."; along with "rectification campaigns" to develop the consolidation of the Party ideologically, politically and organizationally.

From another side, in dealing with the national question, start from: "The national struggle is, in the final analysis, a problem of class struggle." Keep in mind that: "The big countries and the rich countries despise the small countries and poor countries. And it is not without reason that they despise us, because we are backwards . . . The contempt of others towards us is, nevertheless, beneficial. It forces us to work and to advance." Seriously consider the question of national minorities:

The minority nationalities in our country number more the thirty million. Although they constitute only 6 per cent of the total population, they inhabit extensive regions which comprise 50 to 60 percent of China's total area. It is thus imperative to foster good relation between the Han people and the minority nationalities. The key to this question lies in overcoming Han chauvinism. At the same time, efforts should also be made to overcome local-nationality chauvinism wherever it exists among the minority nationalities. Both Han chauvinism and local-nationality chauvinism are harmful to the unity of the nationalities; they represent one kind of contradiction among the people which should be resolved. [On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People, SW, V. V, p. 406]

With respect to strategy and tactics:

We have developed a concept over a long period for the struggle against the enemy, namely, strategically we should despise all our enemies, but tactically we should take them all seriously. If we do not despise him with regard to the whole, we shall commit opportunist errors. Marx and Engels were but two individuals, and yet in those early days they already declared that capitalism would be overthrown throughout the world. But with regard to specific problems and specific enemies, if we do not take them seriously, we shall commit adventurist errors. In war, battles can only be fought one by one and the enemy forces can only be destroyed one part at a time. Factories can only be built one by one. Peasants can only plough the land plot by plot. The same is even true of eating a meal. Strategically, we take the eating of a meal lightly, we are sure we can manage it. But when it comes to the actual eating, it must be done mouthful by mouthful, you cannot swallow an entire banquet at one gulp. This is called the piecemeal solution and is known in military writings as destroying the enemy forces one by one. [All Reactionaries are Paper Tigers, SW, V. V, p 517-8]

Complement this with what Chairman Mao established in "On Our Policies": "In the relationship with the different classes in our country, apply the fundamental policy of developing the advanced forces, win over the intermediate ones and isolate the recalcitrant anti-Communist ones"; and: "In the struggle against recalcitrant anti-Communists, exploit their contradictions, win over the majority, combat a minority and crush our enemies one at a time. Struggle with reason, with the advantage and to overcome."

Within this perspective, intellectuals, women and youth should guide themselves by: "Without the participation of the revolutionary intellectuals, the victory of the revolution is impossible." "The intellectuals will achieve nothing unless they integrate themselves with the worker and peasant masses. In sum, the dividing line between the revolutionary intellectuals and the non-revolutionary or counterrevolutionary intellectuals consists in whether they are disposed to integrate themselves with the masses of workers and peasants and whether they do so in practice." On women: "Women represent half of the population. The economic circumstances of the working woman and the oppression she endures, like no one else, shows that women urgently needs revolution, and that she is a force that will determine the victory or defeat of the revolution." And following the Maoist principle that the emancipation of women is part of the emancipation of the proletariat, one must firmly uphold: "The day in which women throughout the country rise up will be the moment of victory of the revolution in China." "True equality between men and women can only be reached in the process of socialist transformation in society as a whole"; and: "Unite, take part in production and political activities to better the economic and political situation of women." On youth: "The world is yours, and also ours; but, in the final analysis, it is yours . . . the world belongs to you." "Youth is the most active and vital force in society. The youths are the most anxious to lear, and the least conservative in their thought." And: "How do we judge whether a youth is revolutionary? How to discern this? There is only one criteria: if he is disposed to stand, and stands in practice, with the great worker and peasant masses. He is revolutionary if he wants to do so and does it; otherwise he is non-revolutionary or counterrevolutionary. If he identifies today with the worker and peasant masses, he is revolutionary today; if tomorrow he stops doing so, or passes over to oppress the common people, he will be transformed into a non- revolutionary or counterrevolutionary."

For their part, Communists, the members of the Communist Party, always subject themselves to these wise words: "Everything Communists do begins with the highest interests of the great masses of the people . . . we are convinced of the complete just of our cause . . . we will not be detained by any personal sacrifice and are disposed to give our lives for this cause at any moment." And furthermore: "We muse be especially vigilant against careerist and conspirators like Khrushchev and prevent such scoundrels from usurping, at whatever level, the leadership of the Party and State."

But not only Communists, but all revolutionaries and all the people should always keep in mind that: "Except for deserts, wherever there are groups of people, these will inevitably be made up of a left, center and right. This will continue to be true even ten thousand years from now." "When a typhoon strikes, the wavering elements who cannot withstand it begin to vacillate. That's a law. I would like to call your attention to it. Some people, having vacillated a few times, gain experience and stop wavering. But there is a type of person who will go on wavering forever. They are like some crops, rice for example, which sway at a whiff of wind because of their slender stalks. Sorghum and maize with their stouter stalks do better. Only big trees stand upright and rock-firm. Typhoons occur every year. So do ideological and political typhoons at home and abroad. This is a natural phenomenon in society. A political party is a kind of society, a political kind of society. The primary category in political society consists of political parties and political groups. A political party is a class organization." "When they find themselves at a disadvantage, the representatives of the exploiting classes resort to offensive tactics as a means of defense, with the goal of preserving their existence today and facilitating their future growth. They invent things from nothing and make up rumors in the face of the people, or seize on the appearances of something to launch attacks on their essence, or they sing the praises of some and attack others, or they inflate some problem 'to open a breach' in order to put us in a difficult position. In sum, they constantly study what tactics to confront us with and 'explore the terrain' to reach their goal. Sometimes, 'they play dead' to reach their goal. They have many years of experience in the class struggle and know how to take advantage of different forms of struggle, both legal as well as illegal. We, as militant revolutionaries, must know their tricks and study their tactics with the goal of defeating them. We must not, for any reason, conduct ourselves like naive scholars who approach the complex class struggle in a simplistic way." And: "As far as we are concerned, I think it is bad if a person, party, army or center of learning is not attacked by the enemy, because that indicates that we have sunk in the same swamp as them. It is good if the enemy attacks us, because that proves we have delimited boundaries with him. It is even better if the enemy attacks us in fury and paints black and devoid of all virtue, because that not only proves we have delimited boundaries, but that we have achieved noteworthy successes in our work."

And confident that: "A great disorder under heaven leads to a great order under heaven," we must always guide ourselves with these shining words of Chairman Mao Tse-tung: "The world is advancing and the future is bright; no one can change this general tendency of history . . .In a word, the future is bright, but the road is ardous."

"Every time a people from a small country rises in struggle, they dare to take up arms and take the destiny of their country in their own hands, they will unfailingly defeat the aggression of a big country. This is the a law of history."

"The present Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution is completely necessary and very timely to consolidate the dictatorship of the proletariat, prevent the restoration of capitalism and to build socialism."

"The danger of a new world war persists; the people of the world must be prepared. Nevertheless, the principal tendency in today's world is revolution." "The displacement of the old by the new is a universal law, eternal and unavoidable."


Socialism and the dictatorship of the proletariat is a fundamental issue of Marxism- Leninism-Maoism; even more so today when we see the convergent counterrevolutionary revisionist offensive of Gorbachev and Teng and the new imperialist assault deny socialism and its great conquests with Lenin, Stalin and Chairman Mao, centrally and principally the dictatorship of the proletariat. For that reason, today more than ever, the proletariat, the people and Communists, principally, must uphold even more the theory of Marxism on socialism and the dictatorship of the proletariat, defending the great victories of the international proletariat in those fields and continue unavoidably along the same path, because it is the only path for the emancipation of humanity, to reach the true kingdom of liberty--Communism. The great founder, Marx, in the Manifesto, taught us that: "The Communist revolution is the most radical rupture with traditional property relations; it is not the least bit strange, then, that in its course it will radically break with traditional ideas." In his 1852 letter to Weydemeyer: "Now as for myself, I do not claim to have discovered either the existence of classes in modern society or struggle between them. Long before me, bourgeois historians had described the historical development of this struggle between the classes, as had bourgeois economists their economic anatomy. My own contribution was:

  • 1) to show that the existence of classes is merely bound up with certain historical phases in the development of production;
  • 2) that the class struggle necessarily leads to the dictatorship of the proletariat;
  • 3) that the dictatorship itself constitutes no more than a transition to the abolition of all classes and to a classless society. [MECW, Vol. 39, pp. 62-63]

And on socialism, its limitations and the continued existence of bourgeois rights:

What we have to deal with here is a communist society, not as it has developed on its own foundations, but, on the contrary, just as it emerges from capitalist society; which is thus in every respect, economically, morally, and intellectually, still stamped with the birthmarks of the old society from whose womb it emerges. Accordingly, the individual producer receives back from society after the deductions have been made exactly what he gives to it. What he has given to it is his individual quantum of labor. For example, the social working day consists of the sum of the individual hours of work; the individual labor time of the individual producer is the part of the social working day contributed by him, his share in it. He receives a certificate from society that he has furnished such-and-such an amount of labor (after deducting his labor for the common funds). With this certificate, he draws from the social stock of means of consumption as much as the same amount of labor cost. The same amount of labor which he has given to society in one form, he receives back in another.

Here, obviously, the same principle prevails as that which regulates the exchange of commodities, as far as this is exchange of equal values. Content and form are changed, because under the altered circumstances no one can give anything except his labor, and because, on the other hand, nothing can pass to the ownership of individuals, except individual means of consumption. But as far as the distribution of the latter among the individual producers is concerned, the same principle prevails as in the exchange of commodity equivalents: a given amount of labor in one form is exchanged for an equal amount of labor in another form.

Hence, equal right here is still in principle bourgeois right, although principle and practice are no longer at loggerheads, while the exchange of equivalents in commodity exchange exists only on the average and not in the individual case.

In spite of this advance, this equal right is still constantly stigmatized by a bourgeois limitation. The right of the producers is proportional to the labor they supply; the equality consists in the fact that measurement is made with an equal standard, labor.

But one man is superior to another physically, or mentally, and supplies more labor in the same time, or can labor for a longer time. Labor, to serve as a measure, must be defined by its duration or intensity, otherwise it ceases to be a standard of measurement. This equal right is an unequal right for unequal labor. It recognizes no class differences, because everyone is only a worker like everyone else; but it tacitly recognizes unequal individual endowment, and thus productive capacity, as a natural privilege. It is, therefore, a right of inequality, in its content, like every right. Right, by its very nature, can consist only in the application of an equal standard; but unequal individuals (and they would not be different individuals if they were not unequal) are measurable only by an equal standard insofar as they are brought under an equal point of view, are taken from one definite side only for instance, in the present case, are regarded only as workers and nothing more is seen in them, everything else being ignored. Further, one worker is married, another is not; one has more children than another, and so on and so forth. Thus, with an equal performance of labor, and hence an equal in the social consumption fund, one will in fact receive more than another, one will be richer than another, and so on. To avoid all these defects, right, instead of being equal, would have to be unequal.

But these defects are inevitable in the first phase of communist society as it is when it has just emerged after prolonged birth pangs from capitalist society. Right can never be higher than the economic structure of society and its cultural development conditioned thereby.

Similarly on COMMUNISM:

In a higher phase of communist society, after the enslaving subordination of the individual to the division of labor, and therewith also the antithesis between mental and physical labor, has vanished; after labor has become not only a means of life but life's prime want; after the productive forces have also increased with the all-around development of the individual, and all the springs of cooperative wealth flow more abundantly only then can the narrow horizon of bourgeois right be crossed in its entirety and society inscribe on its banners: From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!

Regarding the proletarian dictatorship, the unerasable conclusion reached in the same Critique of the Gotha Program:

Between capitalist and communist society there lies the period of the revolutionary transformation of the one into the other. Corresponding to this is also a political transition period in which the state can be nothing but the revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat.


In destroying the existing conditions of oppression by transferring all the means of labor to the productive laborer, and thereby compelling every able-bodied individual to work for a living, the only base for class rule and oppression would be removed. But before such a change could be done, a proletarian dictatorship would become necessary, and the first condition of that was a proletarian army. The working classes would have to conquer the right to emancipate themselves on the battlefield. The task of the International was to organize and combine the forces of labor for the coming struggle.

Lenin masterfully analyzed the fundamental question of socialism and the dictatorship of the proletariat, developing Marxism along the way. He principally deepened the idea of socialism as a "transitional period" and the exercise of the proletarian dictatorship. In his great work "State and Revolution" on socialism as the first phase of Communism, he wrote:

It is this communist society, which has just emerged into the light of day out of the womb of capitalism and which is in every respect stamped with the birthmarks of the old society, that Marx terms the "first," or lower, phase of communist society.

The means of production are no longer the private property of individuals. The means of production belong to the whole of society. Every member of society, performing a certain part of the socially-necessary work, receives a certificate from society to the effect that he has done a certain amount of work. And with this certificate he receives from the public store of consumer goods a corresponding quantity of products. After a deduction is made of the amount of labor which goes to the public fund, every worker, therefore, receives from society as much as he has given to it.

"Equality" apparently reigns supreme.

But when Lassalle, having in view such a social order (usually called socialism, but termed by Marx the first phase of communism), says that this is "equitable distribution," that this is "the equal right of all to an equal product of labor," Lassalle is mistaken and Marx exposes the mistake.

"Hence, the equal right," says Marx, in this case still certainly conforms to "bourgeois law," which, like all law, implies inequality. All law is an application of an equal measure to different people who in fact are not alike, are not equal to one another. That is why the "equal right" is violation of equality and an injustice. In fact, everyone, having performed as much social labor as another, receives an equal share of the social product (after the above-mentioned deductions).

But people are not alike: one is strong, another is weak; one is married, another is not; one has more children, another has less, and so on. And the conclusion Marx draws is: "... With an equal performance of labor, and hence an equal share in the social consumption fund, one will in fact receive more than another, one will be richer than another, and so on. To avoid all these defects, the right instead of being equal would have to be unequal."

The first phase of Communism, therefore, cannot yet provide justice and equality; differences, and unjust differences, in wealth will still persist, but the exploitation of man by man will have become impossible because it will be impossible to seize the means of production -- the factories, machines, land, etc. -- and make them private property. In smashing Lassalle's petty-bourgeois, vague phrases about "equality" and "justice" in general, Marx shows the course of development of communist society, which is compelled to abolish at first only the "injustice" of the means of production seized by individuals, and which is unable at once to eliminate the other injustice, which consists in the distribution of consumer goods "according to the amount of labor performed" (and not according to needs).

The vulgar economists, including the bourgeois professors and "our" Tugan, constantly reproach the socialists with forgetting the inequality of people and with "dreaming" of eliminating this inequality. Such a reproach, as we see, only proves the extreme ignorance of the bourgeois ideologists.

Marx not only most scrupulously takes account of the inevitable inequality of men, but he also takes into account the fact that the mere conversion of the means of production into the common property of the whole society (commonly called "socialism") does not remove the defects of distribution and the inequality of "bourgeois laws" which continues to prevail so long as products are divided "according to the amount of labor performed." Continuing, Marx says:

"But these defects are inevitable in the first phase of Communist society as it is when it has just emerged, after prolonged birth pangs, from capitalist society. Law can never be higher than the economic structure of society and its cultural development conditioned thereby."

And so, in the first phase of Communist society (usually called socialism) "bourgeois law" is not abolished in its entirety, but only in part, only in proportion to the economic revolution so far attained, i.e., only in respect of the means of production. "Bourgeois law" recognizes them as the private property of individuals. Socialism converts them into common property. To that extent -- and to that extent alone -- "bourgeois law" disappears.

However, it persists as far as its other part is concerned; it persists in the capacity of regulator (determining factor) in the distribution of products and the allotment of labor among the members of society. The socialist principle, "He who does not work shall not eat," is already realized; the other socialist principle, "An equal amount of products for an equal amount of labor," is also already realized. But this is not yet communism, and it does not yet abolish "bourgeois law," which gives unequal individuals, in return for unequal (really unequal) amounts of labor, equal amounts of products.

This is a "defect," says Marx, but it is unavoidable in the first phase of Communism; for if we are not to indulge in utopianism, we must not think that having overthrown capitalism people will at once learn to work for society without any rules of law. Besides, the abolition of capitalism does not immediately create the economic prerequisites for such a change.

In the same work, on social and state control:

Until the "higher" phase of communism arrives, the socialists demand the strictest control by society and by the state over the measure of labor and the measure of consumption; but this control must start with the expropriation of the capitalists, with the establishment of workers' control over the capitalists, and must be exercised not by a state of bureaucrats, but by a state of armed workers.

The selfish defense of capitalism by the bourgeois ideologists (and their hangers-on, like the Tseretelis, Chernovs, and Co.) consists in that they substitute arguing and talk about the distant future for the vital and burning question of present-day politics, namely, the expropriation of the capitalists, the conversion of all citizens into workers and other employees of one huge "syndicate"--the whole state--and the complete subordination of the entire work of this syndicate to a genuinely democratic state, the state of the Soviets of Workers' and Soldiers' Deputies.

Thus his great conclusion on the "bourgeois state, without the bourgeoisie":

In its first phase, or first stage, communism cannot as yet be fully mature economically and entirely free from traditions or vestiges of capitalism. Hence the interesting phenomenon that communism in its first phase retains "the narrow horizon of bourgeois law." Of course, bourgeois law in regard to the distribution of consumer goods inevitably presupposes the existence of the bourgeois state, for law is nothing without an apparatus capable of enforcing the observance of the rules of law.

It follows that under communism there remains for a time not only bourgeois law, but even the bourgeois state, without the bourgeoisie!

This may sound like a paradox or simply a dialectical conundrum of which Marxism is often accused by people who have not taken the slightest trouble to study its extraordinarily profound content.

But in fact, remnants of the old, surviving in the new, confront us in life at every step, both in nature and in society. And Marx did not arbitrarily insert a scrap of "bourgeois" law into communism, but indicated what is economically and politically inevitable in a society emerging out of the womb of capitalism.

Lenin, in "Economy and Politics in the Era of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat," covers the "transitional period" in part I, and the negation of it by revisionists and opportunists: Theoretically, there can be no doubt that between capitalism and communism there lies a definite transition period. It cannot but combine the features and properties of both these forms of social economy. This transition period cannot but be a period of struggle between moribund capitalism and nascent communism or, in other words, between capitalism which has been defeated but not destroyed and communism which has been born but which is still very feeble.

The necessity for a whole historical era distinguished by these features of a transition period should be obvious not only to Marxists, but to every educated person who is in any degree acquainted with the theory of development. Yet all the talk on the subject of the transition to socialism which we hear from present-day representatives petty-bourgeois democracy (and such, in spite of their spurious socialist label, are the representatives of the Second International, including such individuals as MacDonald, Jean Longuet, Kautsky, and Friedrich Adler) is marked by complete obliviousness to this obvious truth. Petty-bourgeois democrats are distinguished by an aversion to class struggle, by the hope of managing without a class struggle, by an endeavor to smooth over and reconcile, to take the edge off sharp corners. Such democrats therefore either avoid recognizing any necessity for a whole historical period of transition from capitalism to communism or regard it as their duty to concoct schemes for reconciling the two contending forces, instead of leading the struggle of one of these forces.

In Russia, the dictatorship of the proletariat must inevitably differ in certain specific features from that in the advanced countries, owing to the very great backwardness and petty-bourgeois character of our country. But the basic forces and the basic forms of social economy are the same in Russia as in any capitalist country, so that these specific features can relate only to what is not most important.

Just as in part IV he treats the transcendental point about the suppression of classes:
Socialism means the abolition of classes.

In order to abolish classes it is necessary, firstly, to overthrow the landlords and capitalists. This part of our task has been accomplished, but it is only a part, and moreover, not the most difficult part. In order to abolish classes it is necessary, secondly, to abolish the difference between workingman and peasant, to make them all workers. This cannot be done all at once.

In order to solve the second and most difficult part of the problem, the proletariat, after having defeated the bourgeoisie, must unswervingly conduct its policy towards the peasantry along the following fundamental lines: the proletariat must separate, demarcate the peasant toiler from the peasant owner, the peasant worker from the peasant huckster, the peasant who labors from the peasant who profiteers.

In this demarcation lies the whole essence of socialism. So that, in part V, he masterfully treats socialism, classes and the dictatorship of the proletariat: Socialism means the abolition of classes. The dictatorship of the proletariat has done all it could to abolish classes. But classes cannot be abolished all at once. And classes remain and will remain in the era of the dictatorship of the proletariat. The dictatorship will become unnecessary when classes disappear. Without the dictatorship of the proletariat they will not disappear.

Classes have remained, but in the era of the dictatorship of the proletariat every class has undergone a change, and the relations between the classes have also changed. The class struggle does not disappear under the dictatorship of the proletariat; it merely assumes different forms.

Under capitalism the proletariat was an oppressed class, a class bereft of all ownership in the means of production, the only class which stood directly and completely opposed to the bourgeoisie, and therefore the only one capable of being revolutionary to the very end. Having overthrown the bourgeoisie and won political power, the proletariat has become the ruling class; it holds the power of state, it has the disposal of the means of production that have already been socialized; it guides the wavering and intermediary elements and classes; it crushes the enhanced energy of resistance of the exploiters. All these are specific tasks of the class struggle, tasks which the proletariat for, merely did not set itself, and could not have set itself.

The class of exploiters, the landlords and capitalists, has not disappeared and cannot disappear all at once under the dictatorship of the proletariat. The exploiters have been smashed, but not destroyed. They still have an international base in the form of international capital, a branch of which they represent. They still retain a part of certain means of production, they still have money, they still have vast social connections. Just because they have been defeated, their energy of resistance has increased a hundred and thousandfold. The "art" of state, military, and economic administration gives them a superiority, and a very great superiority, so that their importance is incomparably greater than their numerical strength among the population would warrant. The class struggle waged by the overthrown exploiters against the victorious vanguard of the exploited, i.e., against the proletariat, has become incomparably more bitter. And it cannot be otherwise in the case of a revolution, if this concept is not replaced (as it is by all the heroes of the Second International) by reformist illusions.

Lastly, the peasantry, like the petty bourgeoisie in general, occupies a halfway, intermediary position even under the dictatorship of the proletariat: on the one hand, it represents a fairly large (and in backward Russia, a vast) mass of toilers, united by the common interest of the toilers to emancipate themselves from the landlord and the capitalist; on the other hand, it represents disunited small proprietors, property-owners, and traders. Such an economic position inevitably gives rise to vacillation between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie. And in view of the acute form which the struggle between these later has assumed, in view of the incredibly severe break up of all social relations, and in view of the great attachment precisely of the peasants and the petty bourgeoisie generally to the old, the routine, and the unchangeable, it is only natural that we should inevitably find them swinging from one side to the other, that we should find them wavering, changeable, uncertain, and so on.

The task of the proletariat in relation to this class or to these social elements is to guide it, to strive to establish its influence over it. The proletariat must lead the vacillating and unstable along with it.

If we compare all the basic forces or classes and their interrelations, as modified by the dictatorship of the proletariat, we shall realize how unutterably nonsensical and theoretically stupid is the common petty-bourgeois idea shared by all representatives of the Second International, that the transition to socialism is possible "by means of democracy" in general. The fundamental source of this error lies in the prejudice inherited from the bourgeoisie that "democracy" is something absolute and not concerned with classes. As a matter of fact, democracy itself passes into an entirely new phase under the dictatorship of the proletariat, while the class struggle rises to a higher level and dominates over each and every form.

General talk about freedom, equality, and democracy is in fact but a stereotyped repetition of concepts which are only a cast from the relations of commodity production. To attempt to solve the concrete problems of the dictatorship of the proletariat by means of such general talk is to accept the theories and principles of the bourgeoisie all along the line. From the point of view of the proletariat, the question can be put only in the following way: freedom from the oppression of which class? Equality of which class with which? democracy based on private property, or on a struggle for the abolition of private property? and so forth.

Long ago Engels in his Anti-Duhring explained that the concept equality is a cast from the relations of commodity production and becomes a prejudice if equality is not understood to mean the abolition of classes. This elementary truth regarding the distinction between the bourgeois-democratic and the socialist conception of equality is constantly being forgotten. But if it is not forgotten, it becomes obvious that by overthrowing the bourgeoisie the proletariat takes the most decisive step towards the abolition of classes, and that in order to complete the process the proletariat must continue its class struggle, making use of the apparatus of state power and employing various methods of combating, influencing, and bringing pressure to bear on the overthrown bourgeoisie and the vacillating petty bourgeoisie.

On the central point, the dictatorship of the proletariat, we must always seriously and profoundly bear in mind what Lenin established:

Those who recognize only the class struggle are not yet Marxists; they may be found to be still within the bounds of bourgeois thinking and bourgeois politics. To confine Marxism to the theory of the class struggle means curtailing Marxism, distorting it, reducing it to something acceptable to the bourgeoisie. Only he is a Marxist who extends the recognition of the class struggle to the recognition of the dictatorship of the proletariat. That is what constitutes the most profound distinction between the Marxist and the ordinary petty (as well as big) bourgeois. This is the touchstone on which the real understanding and recognition of Marxism should be tested. [State and Revolution]

On the other hand, it is not difficult to see that during every transition from capitalism to socialism, dictatorship is necessary for two main reasons, or along two main channels. Firstly, capitalism cannot be defeated and eradicated without the ruthless suppression of the resistance of the exploiters, who cannot at once be deprived of their wealth, of their advantages of organization and knowledge, and consequently for a fairly long period will inevitably try to overthrow the hated rule of the poor; secondly, every great revolution, and a socialist revolution in particular, even if there is no external war, is inconceivable without internal war, i.e., civil war, which is even more devastating than external war, and involves thousands and millions of cases of wavering and desertion from one side to another, implies a state of extreme indefiniteness, lack of equilibrium and chaos. And of course, all the elements of disintegration of the old society, which are inevitably very numerous and connected mainly with the petty bourgeoisie (because it is the petty bourgeoisie that every war and every crisis ruins and destroys first), are bound to "reveal themselves" during such a profound revolution. And these elements of disintegration cannot "reveal themselves" otherwise than in an increase of crime, hooliganism, corruption, profiteering and outrages of every kind. To put these down requires time and requires an iron hand.

There has not been a single great revolution in history in which the people did not instinctively realize this and did not show salutary firmness by shooting thieves on the spot. The misfortune of previous revolutions was that the revolutionary enthusiasm of the people, which sustained them in their state of tension and gave them the strength to suppress ruthlessly the elements of disintegration, did not last long. The social, i.e., the class, reason for this instability of the revolutionary enthusiasm of the people was the weakness of the proletariat, which alone is able (if it is sufficiently numerous, class-conscious and disciplined) to win over to its side the majority of the working and exploited people (the majority of the poor, to speak more simply and popularly) and retain power sufficiently long to suppress completely all the exploiters as well as all the elements of disintegration.

It was this historical experience of all revolutions, it was this world-historic economic and political lesson that Marx summed up when he gave his short, sharp, concise and expressive formula: dictatorship of the proletariat.

The dictatorship of the proletariat is a most determined and most ruthless war waged by the new class against a more powerful enemy, the bourgeoisie, whose resistance is increased tenfold by its overthrow (even if only in one country), and whose power lies not only in the strength of international capital, in the strength and durability of the international connections of the bourgeoisie, but also in the force of habit, in the strength of small production. For, unfortunately, small production is still very widespread in the world, and small production engenders capitalism and the bourgeoisie continuously, daily, hourly, spontaneously, and on a mass scale. For all these reasons the dictatorship of the proletariat is essential, and victory over the bourgeoisie is impossible without a long, stubborn and desperate war of life and death, a war demanding perseverance, discipline, firmness, indomitableness and unity of will. [Left-wing Communism, an Infantile Disorder]

We in Russia (in the third year since the overthrow of the bourgeoisie) are taking the first steps in the transition from capitalism to Socialism, or the lowest stage of Communism. Classes have remained, and will remain everywhere for years after the conquest of power by the proletariat. Perhaps in England, where there is no peasantry (but where there are small proprietors!), the period will be shorter. The abolition of classes not only means driving out the landlords and capitalists that we accomplished with comparative ease it also means abolishing the small commodity producers, and they cannot be driven out, or crushed; we must live in harmony with them; they can (and must) be remolded and reeducated only by very prolonged, slow, cautious organizational work. They encircle the proletariat on every side with a petty-bourgeois atmosphere, which permeates and corrupts the proletariat and causes constant relapses among the proletariat into petty-bourgeois spinelessness, disunity, individualism, and alternate moods of exaltation and dejection. The strictest centralization and discipline are required within the political party of the proletariat in order to counteract this, in order that the organizational role of the proletariat (and that is its principal role) may be exercised correctly, successfully, victoriously. The dictatorship of the proletariat is a persistent struggle sanguinary and bloodless, violent and peaceful, military and economic, educational and administrative against the forces and traditions of the old society. The force of habit of millions and tens of millions is a most terrible force. Without an iron party tempered in the struggle, without a party enjoying the confidence of all the honest elements in the given class, without a party capable of watching and influencing the mood of the masses, it is impossible to conduct such a struggle successfully. It is a thousand times easier to vanquish the centralized big bourgeoisie than to "vanquish" millions and millions of small proprietors, while they, by their ordinary, every day, imperceptible, elusive, demoralizing activity achieve the very results which the bourgeoisie need and which restore the bourgeoisie. Whoever weakens ever so little the iron discipline of the party of the proletariat (especially during the time of its dictatorship) actually aids the bourgeoisie against the proletariat. [Left-wing Communism, an Infantile Disorder]

Among the Soviet engineers, the Soviet school teachers and the privileged, i.e., the most highly skilled and best situated workers in the Soviet factories, we observe a constant revival of absolutely all the bad traits peculiar to bourgeois parliamentarism, and we shall gradually conquer this evil only by constant, tireless, pro longed and persistent struggle, proletarian organization and discipline. [Left-wing Communism, an Infantile Disorder]

The revolution we have begun and have been making for two years, and which we are firmly determined to carry through to the end (applause), is possible and feasible only provided we manage to transfer power to the new class, provided the bourgeoisie, the capitalist slave owners, the bourgeois intellectuals, the representatives of all the owners and property-holders are replaced by the new class in all spheres of government, in all state affairs, in the entire business of running the new life, from top to bottom. (Applause.) [Report at the Second Congress of All-Russian Trade Unions]

Chairman Mao Tse-tung, in his elevation of Marxism to a new, third and superior stage, has extraordinarily developed scientific socialism as the theory and practice of the revolution, principally with his unfading development of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. Thus, Chairman Mao with the proletarian cultural revolution, as a continuation of the revolution under the proletarian dictatorship, deepened and grandly developed the fundamental question of socialism and the dictatorship of the proletariat. He established the form to develop the revolution in the condition of a socialist society and under a state of proletarian dictatorship, in order to continue the inexorable march towards Communism.

Let us look at some points and situations that led to this transcendental conclusion. On the revolution, in Material on the Counterrevolutionary Hu Feng Clique, Chairman Mao wrote: "Except for the revolution that replaced primitive communal system by the slave system, that is, a system of non-exploitation by one of exploitation, all revolutions in the past ended in the replacement of one system of exploitation by another, and it was neither imperative nor possible to do a thorough job of suppressing counter-revolutionaries. Only our revolution, the revolution of the masses of the people led by the proletariat and the Communist Party, aims at the final elimination of all systems of exploitation and all classes." [SW, Vol. V., pp 181-2] And, on the "universal rule" of first taking power to transform society:

Similarly, from the standpoint of world history, the bourgeois revolutions and the establishment of the bourgeois nations came before, not after, the Industrial Revolution. The bourgeoisie first changed the superstructure and took possession of the machinery of state before carrying on propaganda to gather real strength. Only then did they push forward great changes in the production relations. When the production relations had been taken care of and they were on the right track they then opened the wary for the development of the productive forces. To be sure, the revolution in the production relations is brought on by a certain degree of development of the productive forces, but the major development of the productive forces always comes after changes in the production relations. Consider the history of the development of capitalism. First came simple coordination, which subsequently developed into workshop handicrafts. At this time capitalist production relations were already taking shape, but the workshops produced without machines. This type of capitalist production relations gave rise to the need for technological advance, creating the conditions for the use of machinery. In England the Industrial Revolution (late eighteenth-early nineteenth centuries) was carried through only after the bourgeois revolution, that is, after the seventeenth century. All in their respective ways, Germany, France, America, and Japan underwent change in superstructure and production relations before the vast development of capitalist industry.

It is a general rule that you cannot solve the problem of ownership and go on to expand development of the productive forces until you have first prepared public opinion for the seizure of political power. Although between the bourgeois revolution and the proletarian revolution there are certain differences (before the proletarian revolution socialist production relations did not exist, while capitalist production relations were already beginning to grow in feudal society) basically they are alike. [A Critique of Soviet Economics, pp. 66-67]

Similarly on the necessity to demolish the old superstructure in order to abolish the old relations of production:

All revolutionary history shows that the full development of new productive forces is not the prerequisite for the transformation of backward production relations. Our revolution began with Marxist-Leninist propaganda, which served to create new public opinion in favor of the revolution. Moreover, it was possible to destroy the old production relations only after we had overthrown a backward superstructure in the course of revolution. After the old production relations had been destroyed, new ones were created, and these cleared the way for the development of new social productive forces. With that behind us we were able to set in motion the technological revolution to develop social productive forces on a large scale. At the same time, we still had to continue transforming the production relations and ideology.

This textbook addresses itself only to material preconditions and seldom engages he question of the superstructure, i.e., the class nature of the state, philosophy, and science. In economics the main object of study is the production relations. All the same, political economy and the materialist historical outlook are close cousins. It is difficult to deal clearly with problems of the economic base and the production relations if the question of the superstructure is neglected. [A Critique of Soviet Economics, p. 51]

Regarding how the new China arose:

Our People's Republic was not built overnight, but developed step by step out of the revolutionary base areas. A number of democratic personages have also been tempered in the struggle in varying degrees, and they have gone through troubled times together with us. Some intellectuals were tempered in the struggles against I imperialism and reaction; since liberation many have gone through a process of ideological remolding aimed at enabling them to distinguish I clearly between ourselves and the enemy. In addition, the consolidation I of our state is due to the fact that our economic measures are basically sound, that the people's life is secure and steadily improving, that our policies towards the national bourgeoisie and other classes are correct, and so on. [On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People, SW V. V, p. 396-7]

Regarding the dictatorship and its functions:
Our state is a people's democratic dictatorship led by the working class and based on the worker-peasant alliance. What is this dictatorship for? Its first function is internal, namely, to suppress the reactionary classes and elements and those exploiters who resist the socialist revolution, to suppress those who try to wreck our socialist construction, or in other words, to resolve the contradictions between ourselves and the internal enemy. For instance, to arrest, try and sentence certain counter-revolutionaries, and to deprive landlords and bureaucrat-capitalists of their right to vote and their freedom of speech for a certain period of time all this comes within the scope of our dictatorship. To maintain public order and safeguard the interests of the people, it is necessary to exercise dictatorship as well over thieves, swindlers, murderers, arsonists, criminal gangs and other scoundrels who seriously disrupt public order. The second function of this dictatorship is to protect our country from subversion and possible aggression by external enemies. In such contingencies, it is the task of this dictatorship to resolve the contradiction between ourselves and the external enemy. The aim of this dictatorship is to protect all our people so that they can devote themselves to peaceful labor and make China a socialist country with modern industry, modern agriculture, and modern science and culture. Who is to exercise this dictatorship? Naturally, the working class and the entire people under its leadership. Dictatorship does not apply within the ranks of the people. The people cannot exercise dictatorship over themselves, nor must one section of the people oppress another. Lawbreakers among the people will be punished according to law, but this is different in principle from the exercise of dictatorship to suppress enemies of the people. What applies among the people is democratic centralism. [On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People, SW V. V, p 387]

Regarding Liberty and Democracy:

As a matter of fact, freedom and democracy do not exist in the abstract, only in the concrete. In a society rent by class struggle, if there is freedom for the exploiting classes to exploit the working people, there is no freedom for the working people not to be exploited, and if there is democracy for the bourgeoisie, there is no democracy for the proletariat and other working people. The legal existence of the Communist Party is tolerated in some capitalist countries, but only to the extent that it does not endanger the fundamental interests of the bourgeoisie, it is not tolerated beyond that. Those who demand freedom and democracy in the abstract regard democracy as an end and not a means. Democracy sometimes seems to be an end, but it is in fact only a means. Marxism teaches us that democracy is part of the superstructure and belongs to the category of politics. That is to say, in the last analysis, it serves the economic base. The same is true of freedom. Both democracy and freedom are relative, not absolute, and they come into being and develop in specific historical conditions. Within the ranks of the people, democracy is correlative with centralism, and freedom with discipline. They are the two opposites of a single entity, contradictory as well as united, and we should not onesidedly emphasize one to the denial of the other. Within the ranks of the people, we cannot do without freedom, nor can we do without discipline, we cannot do without democracy, nor can we do without centralism. This unity of democracy and centralism, of freedom and discipline, constitutes our democratic centralism. Under this system, the people enjoy extensive democracy and freedom, but at the same time they have to keep within the bounds of socialist discipline. All this is well understood by the broad masses of the people. [On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People, SW V. V, p. 389]

Later, in March of 1949, Chairman Mao said: "To win countrywide victory is only the first step on a long march of then thousand li. Even if this step is worthy of pride, it is comparatively tiny; what will be more worthy of pride is yet to come. After several decades, the victory of the Chinese people's democratic revolution, viewed in retrospect, will seem like only a brief prologue to a long drama. A drama begins with a prologue, but the prologue is not the climax. The Chinese revolution is great, but the road after the revolution will be longer, the work greater and more arduous." [SW, Vol. IV. , pg 374] Similarly, in On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People, [SW, Vol. V] his great work of February 1957, he specified: "But our socialist system has only just been set up; it is not yet fully established or fully consolidated." [pg. 394] And: "New things always have to experience difficulties and setbacks as they grow. It is sheer fantasy to imagine that the cause of socialism is all plain sailing or easy success, with no difficulties or setbacks, or without the exertion of tremendous efforts." [pg. 400] In this same text he reaffirms the class struggle within socialism, and principally outlines that it is not definitively resolved who will vanquish whom. That is, whether socialism or capitalism will triumph politically, speaking of the class struggle currently in development, because historically socialism will necessarily impose itself and will inevitably triumph:

In China, although socialist transformation has in the main been completed as regards the system of ownership, and although the large-scale, turbulent class struggles of the masses characteristic of times of revolution have in the main come to an end, there are still remnants of the overthrown landlord and comprador classes, there is still a bourgeoisie, and the remolding of the petty bourgeoisie has only just started. Class struggle is by no means over. The class struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, the class struggle between the various political forces, and the class struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie in the ideological field will still be protracted and tortuous and at times even very sharp. The proletariat seeks to transform the world according to its own world outlook, and so does the bourgeoisie. In this respect, the question of which will win out, socialism or capitalism, is not really settled yet. [On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People, SW V. V, p. 409]

In his Speech at the Chinese Communist Party's National Conference on Propaganda Work in March 1957, Chairman Mao deals with the great transformations generated by socialism, its gradual consolidation, the need for a long historical period to consolidate itself and the security of building a socialist state:

We are living in a period of great social change. Chinese society has been in the midst of great changes for a long time. The War of Resistance Against Japan was one period of great change and the War of Liberation another. But the present changes are much more profound in character than the earlier ones. We are now building socialism. Hundreds of millions of people are taking part in the movement for socialist transformation. Class relations are changing throughout the country. The petty bourgeoisie in agriculture and handicrafts and the bourgeoisie in industry and commerce have both experienced changes. The social and economic system has been changed; individual economy has been transformed into collective economy, and capitalist private ownership is being transformed into socialist public ownership. Changes of such magnitude are of course reflected in people's minds. Man's social being determines his consciousness. These great changes in our social system are reflected differently among people of different classes, strata and social groups. The masses eagerly support them, for life itself has confirmed that socialism is the only way out for China. Overthrowing the old social system and establishing a new one, the system of socialism, means a great struggle, a great change in the social system and in men's relations with each other. It should be said that the situation is basically sound. But the new social system has only just been established and requires time for its consolidation. It must not be assumed that the new system can be completely consolidated the moment it is established; that is impossible. It has to be consolidated step by step. To achieve its ultimate consolidation, it is necessary not only to bring about the socialist industrialization of the country and persevere in the socialist revolution on the economic front, but also to carry on constant and arduous socialist revolutionary struggles and socialist education on the political and ideological fronts. Moreover, various complementary international conditions are required. In China the struggle to consolidate the socialist system, the struggle to decide whether socialism or capitalism will prevail, will take a long historical period. But we should all realize that the new system of socialism will unquestionably be consolidated. We can assuredly build a socialist state with modern industry, modern agriculture, and modern science and culture. [Speech at the Chinese Communist Party's National Conference on Propaganda Work, SW, V. V, p 422-3]

Another substantial problem in the fundamental issue being analyzed, socialism and the dictatorship of the proletariat, is the construction and development of socialism. On this question, Maoism's point of departure is: "What will happen if our country does not establish a socialist economy? It will become a revisionist country, in fact a bourgeois state, and the dictatorship of the proletariat will transform itself into a bourgeois dictatorship; even more, into a reactionary and fascist dictatorship. This is a problem that merits our highest vigilance and I hope that comrades will seriously reflect upon it." "Regarding the construction of a powerful socialist economy, China will require not just 50 years, but 100 years or even longer. In their country (England), the development of capitalism took many centuries. It goes back to the XVI Century, which forms part of the Middle Ages. From the XVII Century to today is more than 360 years. In our country, the construction of a powerful socialist economy, according to my estimate, will require more than a century." "The productive forces of capitalism have needed more than three centuries of development to reach where they are today. Compared to capitalism, socialism has many advantages. The economic development of our country will be much faster than the capitalist countries. Nevertheless, China has a huge population, its base is weak and its economy is backward." "If it took three centuries and many decades to build a powerful capitalist economy, what is bad about building a powerful socialist economy in a period of some 50 to 100 years?" He tells us to think about: "Regarding socialist construction, we are still acting blindly. For us, a socialist economy is in many respects and unknown realm of necessity." From another side, he established:

With respect to Socialism and Communism, what is meant by constructing socialism? We raise two points:

  • 1. The concentrated manifestation of constructing socialism is making socialist, all- embracing public ownership a reality.
  • 2. Constructing socialism means turning commune collective ownership into public ownership.

Some comrades disapprove of drawing the line between these two types of ownership system, as if the communes were completely publicly owned. In reality there are two systems. One type is public ownership, as in the Anshan Iron and Steel Works, the other is commune-large collective ownership. If we do not raise this, what is the use of socialist construction? Stalin drew the line when he spoke of three conditions. These three basic conditions make sense and may be summarized as follows: increase social output; raise collective ownership to public ownership; go from exchange of commodities to exchange of products, from exchange value to use value.

On these two abovementioned points we Chinese are:

  • 1. expanding and striving to increase output, concurrently promoting industry and agriculture with preference given to developing heavy industry; and
  • 2. raising small collective ownership to public ownership, and then further to all-embracing public ownership.

Those who would not draw these distinctions [among types of ownership] would seem to hold the view that we have already arrived at public ownership. This is wrong. Stalin was speaking of culture when he proposed the three conditions, the physical development and education of the whole people. For this he proposed four conditions:

  • (a) six hours' work per day;
  • (b) combining technical education with work;
  • (c) improving residential conditions;
  • (d) raising wages. Raising wages and lowering prices are particularly helpful here, but the political conditions are missing.

All these conditions are basically to increase production. Once output is plentiful it will be easier to solve the problem of raising collective to public ownership. To increase production we need "More! Faster! Better! More economically!" And for this we need politics-in- command, the four concurrent promotions, the rectification campaigns, the smashing of the ideology of bourgeois right. Add to this the people's communes and it becomes all the easier to achieve "More! Faster! Better! More economically!"

What are the implications of all-embracing public ownership? There are two:

  • 1) the society's means of production are owned by the whole people; and
  • 2) the society's output is owned by the whole people.

The characteristic of the people's commune is that it is the basic level at which industry, agriculture, the military, education, and commerce are to be integrated in our social structure. At the present time it is the basic-level administrative organization. The militia deals with foreign threats, especially from the imperialists. The commune is the best organizational form for carrying out the two transitions, from socialist (the present) to all- embracing public, and from all-embracing public to communist ownership. In future, when the transitions have been completed, the commune will be the basic mechanism of communist society. [A Critique of Soviet Economics, pp. 132-4]

On goods, value and planning: "If we sensibly develop commodity production, it is not held to be a beneficial objective, but in the interests of the peasantry, the worker-peasant alliance and the development of production." "After the rectification campaigns against the Rightists, work is not longer a commodity. People no longer work to get money but to serve the people. This is possible only if labor is no longer a commodity." "The law of value does not release a regulating power. This role is played by planning and the principle consists in putting politics in command. In Chinese society, the law of value does play a regulating role, that is to say a decisive role. What does play a decisive role in production is planning." [A Critique of Soviet Economics] And: "In the field of planning, if we refuse to make a balance and adopt a policy of laissez faire, if we act too prudently and exclude any audacity, we will end up destroying even development. These methods of work are both wrong. A plan is an ideology. Ideology is the reflection of a reality and it acts on reality . . . This clearly shows that things like plans, which make up part of the ideologies, have a big influence on the progress or absence of progress in the economy, as well as the rhythm of economic development." [A Critique of Soviet Economics]

Fighting the revisionist position on "material incentives": "Some say that socialism should lend greater attention to material incentives than capitalism. This thesis truly makes no sense!" "To consider the distribution of the means of consumption as a decisive motive force is the revise the Marxist point of view . . . " Also: "Immediately afterward the text raises this point: 'To begin with, we must utilize material incentives.' This makes it seem as if the masses' creative activity has to be inspired by material interest. At every opportunity the text discusses individual material interest as if it were an attractive means for luring people into pleasant prospects. This is a reflection of the spiritual state of a good number of economic workers and leading personnel and of the failure to emphasize political-ideological work. Under such circumstances there is no alternative to relying on material incentives. 'From each according to his ability, to each according to his labor.' The first half of the slogan means that the very greatest effort must be expended in production. Why separate the two halves of the slogan and always speak onesidedly of material incentive? This kind of propaganda for material interest will make capitalism unbeatable!" [A Critique of Soviet Economics, pg. 79] Furthermore: "Even if the importance of material incentive is recognized, it is never the sole principle. There is always another principle, namely, spiritual inspiration from political ideology. And, while we are on the subject, material incentives cannot simply be discussed as individual interests. There is also the collective interest to which individual interest should be subordinated, long-term interests to which temporary interests should be subordinated, and the interests of the whole to which partial interests should be subordinated." [Ibid. pp 83-4]

Considering the vital importance that the development of socialism has for the peasantry, recall what Chairman Mao had already said in the period of the anti-Japanese resistence: "For thousands of years, an individual economy has ruled over the peasant masses, in which each family and home constituted a productive unit. This form of individual and dispersed production was the economic cement of the feudal regime, and trapped the peasants into eternal poverty. The only path to change this state of things is gradual collectivization." In 1953, upon establishing the socialist transformation of agriculture as part of the general line: "If we speak of agriculture, the only road for agriculture in our country is the socialist road." Similarly, in criticizing the granting of lands propounded in the Soviet "Textbook," he outlines the method of working with the peasantry:

On page 339 it says that the land taken from the rich peasants and given to the poor and middle peasants was land the government had expropriated and then parceled out. This looks at the matter as a grant by royal favor, forgetting that class struggles and mass mobilizations had been set in motion, a right deviationist point of view. Our approach was to rely on the poor peasants, to unite with the majority of middle peasants (lower middle peasants) and seize the land from the landlord class. While the party did play a leading role, it was against doing everything itself and thus substituting for the masses. Indeed, its concrete practice was to "pay call on the poor to learn of their grievances," to identify activist elements, to strike roots and pull things together, to consolidate nuclei, to promote the voicing of grievances, and to organize the class ranks all for the purpose of unfolding the class struggle. [A Critique of Soviet Economics, pp. 44-5]

On the worker-peasant alliance, the basis of the dictatorship of the proletariat, and its development linked to the socialist transformations in agriculture:

Our worker-peasant alliance has already passed through two stages. The first was based on the land revolution, the second on the cooperative movement. If cooperativization had not been set in motion the peasantry inevitably would have been polarized, and the worker- peasant alliance could not have been consolidated. In consequence, the policy of "unified government purchase and sale of private output" could not have been persevered in. The reason is that policy could be maintained and made to work thoroughly only on the basis of cooperativization. At the present time our worker-peasant alliance has to take the next step and establish itself on the basis of mechanization. For to have simply the cooperative and commune movements without mechanization would once again mean that the alliance could not be consolidated. We still have to develop the cooperatives into people's communes. We still have to develop basic ownership by the commune team into basic ownership by the commune and that further into state ownership. When state ownership and mechanization are integrated, we will be able to begin truly to consolidate the worker- peasant alliance, and the differences between workers and peasants will surely be eliminated step by step. [A Critique of Soviet Economics, pp. 46-7]

And on the transformation of intellectuals:

However, the text fails to deal with the transformation of intellectuals. Not only the bourgeois intellectuals but even those of worker or peasant origin need to engage in transformation because they have come under the manifold influence of the bourgeoisie. Liu Shao-tang, of artistic and literary circles, who, after becoming an author, became a major opponent of socialism, ex amplifies this. Intellectuals usually express their general outlook through their way of looking at knowledge. Is it privately owned or publicly owned? Some regard it as their own property, for sale when the price is right and not otherwise. Such are mere "experts" and not "reds" who say the party is an "outsider" and "cannot lead the insiders." Those involved in the cinema claim that the party cannot lead the cinema. Those involved in musicals or ballet claim that the party cannot offer leadership there. Those in atomic science say the same. In sum, what they are all saying is that the party cannot lead anywhere. Remolding of the intellectuals is an extremely important question for the entire period of socialist revolution and construction. Of course it would be wrong to minimize this question or to adopt a concessive attitude toward things bourgeois. [A Critique of Soviet Economics, p. 47]

Regarding the process of humanity, the great dialectical understanding of conceiving the passage from socialism to Communism and the development of this through revolution:

The transition to communism certainly is not a matter of one class overthrowing another. But that does not mean there will be no social revolution, because the superseding of one kind of production relations by another is a qualitative leap, i.e., a revolution. The two transformations of individual economy to collective, and collective economy to public in China are both revolutions in the production relations. So to go from socialism's "distribution according to labor" to communism's "distribution according to need" has to be called a revolution in the production relations. Of course, "distribution according to need" has to be brought about gradually. Perhaps when the principal material goods can be adequately supplied we can begin to carry out such distribution with those goods, extending the practice to other goods on the basis of further development of the productive forces.

Consider the development of our people's communes. When we changed from basic ownership by the team to basic ownership by the commune, was a section of the people likely to raise objections or not? This is a question well worth our study. A determinative condition for realizing this changeover was that the commune-owned economy's income was more than half of the whole commune's total income. To realize the basic commune- ownership system is generally of benefit to the members of the commune. Thus we estimate that there should be no objection on the part of the vast majority. But at the time of changeover the original team cadres could no longer be relatively reduced under the circumstances. Would they object to the changeover?

Although classes may be eliminated in a socialist society, in the course of its development there are bound to be certain problems with "vested interest groups" which have grown content with existing institutions and unwilling to change them. For example, if the rule of distribution according to labor is in effect they benefit from higher pay for more work, and when it came time to change over to "distribution according to need" they could very well be uncomfortable with the new situation. Building any new system always necessitates some destruction of old ones. Creation never comes without destruction. If destruction is necessary, it is bound to arouse some opposition. The human animal is queer indeed. No sooner do people gain some superiority than they assume airs . . . it would be dangerous to ignore this. [A Critique of Soviet Economics, pp. 62-63]

And: Under socialism there may be no war but there is still struggle, struggle among sections of the people; there may be no revolution of one class overthrowing another, but there is still revolution. The transition from socialism to communism is revolutionary. The transition from one stage of communism to another is also. Then there is technological revolution and cultural revolution. Communism will surely have to pass through many stages and many revolutions. [A Critique of Soviet Economics, p. 71]

It was in these conditions and on these bases that Chairman Mao Tse-tung prepared and led the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, in whose founding document he established:

Now then, do classes exist in socialist countries? Does class struggle exist? We can now affirm that classes do exist in socialist countries and that class struggle undoubtedly exists. Lenin said: After the victory of the revolution, because of the existence of the bourgeoisie internationally, because of the existence of bourgeois remnants internally, because the petit bourgeoisie exists and continually generates a bourgeoisie, therefore the classes which have been overthrown within the country will continue to exist for a long time to come and may even attempt restoration. The bourgeois revolutions in Europe in such countries as England and France had many ups and downs. After the overthrow of feudalism there were several restorations and reversals of fortune. This kind of reversal is also possible in socialist countries. An example of this is Yugoslavia which has changed its nature and become revisionist, changing from a workers' and peasants' country to a country ruled by reactionary nationalist elements. In our country we must come to grasp, understand and study this problem really thoroughly. We must acknowledge that classes will continue to exist for a long time. We must also acknowledge the existence of a struggle of class against class, and admit the possibility of the restoration of reactionary classes. We must raise our vigilance and properly educate our youth as well as the cadres, the masses and the middle and basic-level cadres. Old cadres must also study these problems and be educated. Otherwise a country like ours can still move towards its opposite. Even to move towards its opposite would not matter too much because there would still be the negation of the negation, and afterwards we might move towards our opposite yet again. If our children's generation go in for revisionism and move towards their opposite, so that although they still nominally have socialism it is in fact capitalism, then our grandsons will certainly rise up in revolt and overthrow their fathers, because the masses will not be satisfied. Therefore, from now on we must talk about this every year, every month, every day. We will talk about it at congresses, at Party delegate conferences, at plenums, at every meeting we hold, so that have a more enlightened Marxist-Leninist line on the problem. [Chairman Mao Talks to the People, pp. 189-190]

Invoking "Never forget classes and the class struggle" in May 1963: Class struggle, the struggle for production and scientific experiment are the three great revolutionary movements for building a mighty socialist country. These movements are a sure guarantee that communists will be free from bureaucracy and immune against revisionism and dogmatism, and will forever remain invincible. They are a reliable guarantee that the proletariat will be able to unite with the broad working masses and realize a democratic dictatorship. If, in the absence of these movements, the landlords, rich peasants, counter revolutionaries, bad elements and monsters of all kinds were allowed to crawl out, while our cadres were to shut their eyes to all this and in many cases fail even to differentiate between the enemy and ourselves but were to collaborate with the enemy and were corrupted, divided and demoralized by him, if our cadres were thus pulled out or the enemy were able to sneak in, and if many of our workers, peasants and intellectuals were left defenseless against both the soft and the hard tactics of the enemy, then it would not take long, perhaps only several years or a decade, or several decades at most, before a counterrevolutionary restoration on a national scale inevitably occurred, the Marxist- Leninist party would undoubtedly become a revisionist party or fascist party, and the whole of China would change its color.

Similarly in point 17 of the "Proposal Concerning the General Line of the International Communist Movement" of June 1963, a document drafted under the personal direction of Chairman Mao: 17) For a very long historical period after the proletariat takes power, class struggle continues as an objective law independent of man's will, differing only in form from what it was before the taking of power.

After the October Revolution, Lenin pointed out a number of times that:

  • a) The overthrown exploiters always try in a thousand and one ways to recover the "paradise" they have been deprived of.
  • b) New elements of capitalism are constantly and spontaneously generated in the petty- bourgeois atmosphere.
  • c) Political degenerates and new bourgeois elements may emerge in the ranks of the working class and among government functionaries as a result of bourgeois influence and the pervasive, corrupting atmosphere of the petty bourgeoisie.
  • d) The external conditions for the continuance of class struggle within a socialist country are encirclement by international capitalism, the imperialists' threat of armed intervention and their subversive activities to accomplish peaceful disintegration.

Life has confirmed these conclusions of Lenin's.

For decades or even longer periods after socialist industrialization and agricultural collectivization, it will be impossible to say that any socialist country will be free from those elements which Lenin repeatedly denounced, such as bourgeois hangers-on, parasites, speculators, swindlers, idlers, hooligans and embezzlers of state funds; or to say that a socialist country will no longer need to perform or be able to relinquish the task laid down by Lenin of conquering "this contagion, this plague, this ulcer that socialism has inherited from capitalism."

In a socialist country, it takes a very long historical period gradually to settle the question of who will win socialism or capitalism. The struggle between the road of socialism and the road of capitalism runs through this whole historical period. This struggle rises and falls in a wavelike manner, at times becoming very fierce, and the forms of the struggle are many and varied.

The 1957 Declaration rightly states that "the conquest of power by the working class is only the beginning of the revolution, not its conclusion."

To deny the existence of class struggle in the period of the dictatorship of the proletariat and the necessity of thoroughly completing the socialist revolution on the economic, political and ideological fronts is wrong, does not correspond to objective reality and violates Marxism-Leninism.

So much so that in 1964 he reiterated: "It will require a very extended period to resolve the struggle of who will triumph over whom: socialism or capitalism, on the political and ideological fronts. To achieve success a few decades are not enough, it will require a hundred or several hundred years. Regarding how long, it is better to prepare oneself for a long period and not a short one; regarding work, it is better to regard the task as difficult rather than easy. Thinking and acting in this way is more beneficial and less detrimental." And in 1965: "The principal target of the current movement are the people in power taking the capitalist road within the Party." "Among the people in power taking the capitalist road, some act openly while others act behind the scenes." Supporting them are "some people at a high level--in the communes, territories, districts, prefectures, and even at the provincial and central department level that are opposed to the construction of socialism."

The powerful development of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution began in 1966. In its initial milestone, the "Circular of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China" on May 1966, Chairman Mao wrote substantive paragraphs. Referring to the representatives of the bourgeoisie: "Numerous of the their representatives exist in the Central Committee of the Party and in the Party, government and other organizations, and at the central, provincial, municipal and autonomous region level." And:

"Can any equality be permitted on such basic questions as the struggle of the proletariat against the bourgeoisie, the dictatorship of the proletariat over the bourgeoisie, the dictatorship of the proletariat in the superstructure, including all the various spheres of culture, and the continued efforts of the proletariat to weed out those representatives of the bourgeoisie who have sneaked into the communist party and who wave 'red flags' to oppose the red flag? For decades the old-line Social Democrats, and for over ten years the modern revisionists, have never allowed the proletariat equality with the bourgeoisie. They completely deny that the several thousand years of human history is a history of class struggle. They completely deny the class struggle of the proletariat against the bourgeoisie, the proletarian revolution against the bourgeoisie, and the dictatorship of the proletariat over the bourgeoisie. On the contrary, they are faithful lackeys of the bourgeoisie and imperialism. Together with the bourgeoisie and imperialism, they cling to the bourgeois ideology of oppression and exploitation of the proletariat and to the capitalist system, and they oppose Marxist-Leninist ideology and the socialist system. They are a bunch of counter revolutionaries opposing the communist party and the people. Their struggle against us is one of life and death, and there is no question of equality. Therefore, our struggle against them, too, can be nothing but a life-and-death struggle, and our relation with them can in no way be one of equality. On the contrary, it is a relation of one class oppressing another, that is, the dictatorship of the proletariat over the bourgeoisie. There can be no other type of relation, such as a so-called relation of equality, or of peaceful coexistence between exploiting and exploited classes, or of kindness or magnanimity."

"Chairman Mao often says that there is no construction without destruction. Destruction means criticism and repudiation; it means revolution. It involves reasoning things out, which is construction. Put destruction first, and in the process you have construction."

"As a matter of fact, those party people in authority taking the capitalist road who support the bourgeois scholar-tyrants, and those bourgeois representatives who have sneaked into the party and protect the bourgeois scholar-tyrants, are indeed big party tyrants who have usurped the name of the party, have no contact with the masses, have no learning at all, and rely solely on 'acting arbitrarily and trying to overwhelm people with their power."

"But on the other hand, they give free rein to all the various ghosts and monsters who for many years have abounded in our press, radio, magazines, books, textbooks, platforms, works of literature, cinema, drama, ballads and stories, the fine arts, music, the dance, etc., and in doing so they never advocate proletarian leadership or stress any need for approval."

"Hold high the great banner of the proletarian Cultural Revolution, thoroughly expose the reactionary bourgeois stand of those so-called 'academic authorities' who oppose the party and socialism, thoroughly criticize and repudiate the reactionary bourgeois ideas in the sphere of academic work, education, formalism, literature and art, and publishing, and seize the leadership in these cultural spheres. To achieve this, it is necessary at the same time to criticize and repudiate those representatives of the bourgeoisie who have sneaked into the party, the government, the army, and all spheres of culture, to hear them out or transfer some of them to other positions. Above all, we must not entrust these people with the work of leading the Cultural Revolution. In fact many of them have done and are still doing such work, and this is extremely dangerous."

"Those representatives of the bourgeoisie who have sneaked into the party, the government, the army, and various cultural circles are a bunch of counterrevolutionary revisionists. Once conditions are ripe, they will seize political power and turn the dictatorship of the proletariat into a dictatorship of the bourgeoisie. Some of them we have already seen through, others we have not. Some are still trusted by us and are being trained as our successors, persons like Khrushchev, for example, who are still nestling beside us. Party committees at all levels must pay full attention to this matter."

From the Central Committee's (CC) Circular of May 16, 1966.

Elsewhere, Chairman Mao has established that: "The present great cultural revolution is only the first, and in the future there will doubtless be others. In the revolution, the problem of who will defeat whom will only be resolved in a long historical period. If things are not resolved adequately, there will be the possibility of capitalist restoration at any moment. All the members of the Communist Party and the people of the entire country should not think that everything will be resolved after one or two great cultural revolutions, or even three or four. We must always be very alert and never drop our vigilance."

And defining the objectives and political essence of this great revolution, transcendental milestone in the world proletarian revolution:

"The present Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution is completely necessary and very timely to consolidate the dictatorship of the proletariat, prevent the restoration of capitalism and to build socialism."

"The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution is, in essence, a great political revolution begun, under the conditions of socialism, by the proletariat against the bourgeoisie and all other exploiting classes; it is the continuation of the protracted struggle between the Communist Party of China and the broad popular revolutionary masses under its leadership, on the one hand, and the reactionaries of the Kuomintang, on the other; it is the continuation of the class struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie."

And highlighting its economic role: "The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution is a powerful motive force for the development of the social forces of production in our country." And in the ideological sphere the basic problem is to be guided by the principal of "combat the concept of privacy, and criticize and repudiate revisionism"; because, "the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution is a great revolution that reaches the very soul of the people and is destined to resolve the problem of their world view." Insisting on this point, in 1967 the Chairman, before the Albanian military delegation said: "Now I would like to ask you a question: What would you say is the goal of the Great Cultural Revolution? (Someone answered on the spot: It is to struggle against power holders within the party who take the capitalist road.) To struggle against power holders who take the capitalist road is the main task, but it is by no means the goal. The goal is to solve the problem of world outlook; it is the question of eradicating the roots of revisionism.

The Central Committee has emphasized time and again that the masses must educate themselves and liberate themselves. This is because world outlook cannot be imposed on them. In order to transform ideology, it is necessary for the external causes to function through inner causes, though the latter are principal. If the world outlook is not transformed, how can the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution be called a victory? If the world outlook is not transformed, then although there are 2,000 power holders taking the capitalist road in this Great Cultural Revolution, there may be 4,000 next time." The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution in which: "it is right to rebel against the reactionaries"; "the working class should lead everything" and "The proletariat should exercise an all-round dictatorship over the bourgeoisie in the superstructure, including in cultural areas." A revolution whose complexity and difficult conditions where masterfully expressed as follows: "In the past, we fought in the South and the North; it was relatively easy to make such wars, because the enemy was obvious. This Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution is much more difficult than that type of war." "The problem is that those who have committed ideological errors are confused with those who contradictions with us are the same ones that exist between ourselves and the enemy, and it is difficult for a while to differentiate between them."

A great revolution, in which the revolutionary Shanghai storm in January 1967 unfurled the call by Chairman Mao: "Proletarian revolutionaries, unite to snatch power from the handful of leaders who are following the capitalist road within the Party!"; and his important instruction: "The People's Liberation Army should support the broad masses of the left." The revolutionary committees were formed to exercise the unified leadership of the revolution, a form of power concretized by: "The fundamental experience of the revolutionary committee resides on three points: first, it has representatives of the revolutionary cadres; second, it has representatives of the armed forces; and third, it has representatives of the revolutionary masses. Thus, triple revolutionary integration is formed. The revolutionary committee should exercise a unified leadership, end the excessive superposition by the administrative structure, have 'fewer but better troops and a simpler administration' and organize a revolutionized leading group that maintains contact with the masses."

A great revolution which developed itself following the principal of "grasp revolution and promote production, work and the preparations for war," within the strategic conception "make preparations to face war, make preparations against natural catastrophes and do everything for the good of the people."

The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, as a continuation of the revolution under the dictatorship of the proletariat, thus marks the path of the world proletarian revolution in its heroic and unstoppable march towards Communism. In the most gigantic revolutionary epic of humanity it conquered imperishable victories for the international proletariat. Nevertheless, in 1968, with a profound understanding of history and proletarian internationalism, Chairman Mao taught us:

We have won a great victory. But the defeated class will continue to struggle. Its members are still about and it still exists. Therefore we cannot speak of the final victory, not for decades. We must not lose our vigilance. From the Leninist point of view, the final victory in one socialist country not only requires the efforts of the proletariat and the broad popular masses at home, but also depends on the victory of the world revolution and the abolition of the system of exploitation of man by man on this earth so that all mankind will be emancipated. Consequently, it is wrong to talk about the final victory of the revolution in our country light-heartedly; it runs counter to Leninism and does not conform to facts. [(4/15/69) Directives on GPCR, SW, Vol. IX, p. 428]

In April 1969, Chairman Mao said:

"It seems essential that the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution should still be carried out. Our foundation has not been consolidated. According to my own observation I would say that, not in all factories, nor in an overwhelming majority of factories, but in quite a large majority of cases the leadership is not in the hands of true Marxists, nor yet in the hands of the masses of the workers. In the past the leadership in the factories was not devoid of good men there were good men. Among the Party committee secretaries, assistant secretaries and committee members there were good men. There were good men among the branch secretaries. But they followed the old line of Liu Shao-chi. They were all for material incentives, they put profits in command and did not promote proletarian politics. Instead they operated a system of bonuses, etc." "But in the factories there are indeed bad people" .... "I have brought up this instance to illustrate that the revolution has not been completed." [Talk at the First Plenum of the Ninth CC of the Chinese CP, SW Vol. IX, pp 398-399]

Aiming against bourgeois right: "Lenin talked about a bourgeois state without capitalists, build to protect bourgeois right. We ourselves have built up a state like that, in which things are not very different from the old society. There is greater hierarchy and a system of eight wage categories rules, and distribution is according to work and the exchange of equal values."

Combating the revisionism of the anti-Cultural Revolution wind of Teng and his henchmen, Chairman Mao proposed:

"After the democratic revolution, the workers, the poor peasants and lower middle peasants have not been delayed and want to make the revolution. In contrast, some portion of the Party militants have proven reluctant to move forward, and some have retreated and have put themselves against the revolution. Why? Because they, like the high officials they have become, seek to protect the interests of the high officials." "It happens that the socialist revolution falls on their own heads, thus during the collectivization of agriculture there were already those in the Party who opposed it, and when bourgeois right was criticized, their feelings are of rejection. We are making the socialist revolution, nevertheless it is not understood where the bourgeoisie is. It is right inside the Communist Party, and it is the followers of the capitalist road inside the Party. The followers of the capitalist road are still following their road." "Overturning correct verdicts goes against the will of the people." "Without struggle it is impossible to advance." "We are 800 million, can we sidestep the struggle?!" "What does it mean to take the three instructions as key? Stability and unity do not imply abandoning the class struggle. The class struggle is like the key line in a net and the rest is just the mesh." "This person does not engage in the class struggle; he has never mentioned this key point. He persists with his 'black cat or white cat', without making any distinction between imperialism and Marxism."

And synthesizing the class struggle in China and the Communist Party of China (CPC):

"We have been singing The Internationale for 50 years. Nevertheless, on 10 occasions people have appeared in our Party who intended to create splits. The way I see it, this will occur 10, 20 or 30 times more. You don't believe it? Even if you don't, I believe it anyway. Will struggles cease when we reach Communism? I don't believe it. Even in Communism, there will be struggles, only they will be struggles between the new and the obsolete, between what is correct and what is incorrect. From today until tens of thousands of years from now, wrong ideas will be worthless and will not be able to sustain itself."

"In China, since the emperor was overthrown in 1911, no reactionary has be capable of staying in power for long. The longest rule by reaction (Chiang Kai-shek) only lasted 20 years, but he also fell when the people rose up in rebellion. Chiang Kai-shek rose to power by taking advantage of the confidence bestowed on him by Sun Yat-sen and the Juangpu Academy he was in charge of, and by uniting great band of reactionaries around him. Once he turned against the Communist Party, practically all the landlords and bourgeoisie supported him. Furthermore, the Communist Party lacked experience at that time. In that way, Chiang Kai-shek was able to temporarily impose himself with great jubilation. Despite this, during these 20 years he was never able to unite the country.

During this time there was the war between the Kuomintang and the Communist Party, the wars between the Kuomintang and various warlords, the war between China and Japan, and finally, the civil war on a grand scale, for four years, that cast Chiang Kai-shek out to a group of islands. If the Right is able to carry out an anti-Communist coup in China, I am convinced it will know no peace, and very probably its domination will be short-lived, since this will be intolerable by any of the revolutionaries who represent the interests of the people, who make up more than 90% of the population." "In conclusion: the future is bright, but the road has twists and turns, phrases which have become time-honored."

In 1975, Renmin Ribao and Hongqi published the following note to the publication of Marx, Engels and Lenin on the Dictatorship of the Proletariat: Our great leader Chairman Mao recently gave an important instruction on the question of theory.

Chairman Mao pointed out: "Why did Lenin speak of exercising dictatorship over the bourgeoisie? This question must be thoroughly understood. Lack of clarity on this question will lead to revisionism. This should be made known to the whole nation."

... Referring to the socialist system, Chairman Mao pointed out: "China is a socialist country. Before liberation she was much the same as capitalism. Even now she practices an eight- grade wage system, distribution to each according to his work and exchange by means of money, which are scarcely different from those in the old society. What is different is that the system of ownership has changed." Chairman Mao also pointed out: Our country currently practices a system of exchange, and the wage system is unequal, with eight grades, etc. So far as the bourgeois rights are concerned, "these can only be restricted under the dictatorship of the proletariat." Thus it would be quite easy for people like Lin Piao to push the capitalist system if they should come to power. Therefore, we should read more of the works by Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin and by Chairman Mao.

Furthermore, Chairman Mao also pointed out: "Lenin said: 'Small production engenders capitalism and the bourgeoisie continuously, daily, hourly, spontaneously, and on a mass scale.' This also occurs among a section of the workers and a section of the Party members. Both within the ranks of the proletariat and among personnel of state organs, there are those who follow the bourgeois style of life."

These instructions of Chairman Mao profoundly elucidate the Marxist theory of the dictatorship of the proletariat and highlights the great importance the study of the theory of the dictatorship of the proletariat in the current situation. This should merit the close attention of all the Party comrades and the entire people. [People's Daily, February 9, 1975]


Finally, another fundamental question in Marxism-Leninism-Maoism is the struggle against revisionism. This is a necessary, constant and implacable struggle in defense of the ideology of the proletariat, and it is indispensable for the development of the revolution, the conquest of power and to persist in the emancipation of humanity by way of the dictatorship of the proletariat and the leadership of Communist Parties. In the time of Marx and Engels, in September 1879, they unmasked the bourgeois and reformist essence of the program upheld in the so-called "Retrospective look at the socialist movement," an article written by E. Bernstein, among others, the latest pontificator of the old revisionism:

I shall not inquire whether and to what extent this is historically true. The specific charge against Schweitzer is that Schweitzer trivialized Lassalleanism, here regarded as a bourgeois democratic-philanthropic movement, into a one-sided struggle of the industrial workers to promote their own interests trivialized it by emphasizing its character as a class struggle of industrial workers against the bourgeoisie. He is further charged with having 'repudiated bourgeois democracy'. But has bourgeois democracy any business to be in the Social-Democratic Party at all? If it consists of 'honest men', it surely cannot wish to join, and if it nevertheless wishes to join, this can only be for the purpose of stirring up trouble.

Thus, in the view of these gentlemen the Social-Democratic Party ought not to be a one-sided workers' party but a many-sided party of 'all men imbued with a true love of mankind'. This it is to prove, above all, by divesting itself of crude proletarian passions and applying itself, under the direction of educated philanthropic bourgeois, 'to the formation of good taste' and 'the acquisition of good manners' (p. 85). After which the 'seedy appearance' of some of the leaders would give way to a respectable 'bourgeois appearance'. (As though the outwardly seedy appearance of those referred to here were not the least that could be held against them!) After which, too, there will be an influx of supporters from the ranks of the educated and propertied classes. These, however, must first be won over if the ... agitation engaged in is to have perceptible results . . . '. German socialism has laid 'too much stress on winning over the masses, thus omitting to prosecute vigorous' (!) 'propaganda amongst the so-called upper strata of society'. For 'the party still lacks men who are fit to represent it in the Reichstag'. It is, however, 'desirable and necessary to entrust the mandates to men who have had the time and the opportunity to become thoroughly conversant with the relevant material. Only rarely and in exceptional cases do . . . the simple working man and small master craftsman have sufficient leisure for the purpose'.

Therefore, elect bourgeois! In short, the working class is incapable of emancipating itself by its own efforts. In order to do so it must place itself under the direction of 'educated and propertied' bourgeois who alone have 'the time and the opportunity' to become conversant with what is good for the workers. And, secondly, the bourgeois are not to be combated not on your life but won over by vigorous propaganda.

If, however, you wish to win over the upper strata of society, or at least their well-intentioned elements, you mustn't frighten them not on your life. And here the Zurich trio believe they have made a reassuring discovery:

'Now, at the very time it is oppressed by the Anti-Socialist Law, the party is showing that it does not wish to pursue the path of forcible, bloody revolution, but rather is determined . . . to tread the path of legality, i.e., of reform.'

If, therefore, the 5-600,000 Social-Democratic voters, 1/10 to 1/8 of the total electorate and dispersed, what is more, over the length and breadth of the country have sense enough not to beat their heads against a wall and attempt a 'bloody revolution' with the odds at one to ten, this is supposed to prove that they will, for all time, continue to deny themselves all chance of exploiting some violent upheaval abroad, a sudden wave of revolutionary fervor engendered thereby, or even a people's victory won in a clash arising therefrom! Should Berlin ever be so uneducated as to stage another 18 March*, it would behoove the Social-Democrats not to take part in the fighting as 'louts besotted with barricades' (p. 88) but rather to 'tread the path of legality', to placate, to clear away the barricades and, if necessary, march with the glorious army against the one-sided, crude, uneducated masses. Or if the gentlemen insist that's not what they meant, then what did they mean?

But there's better in store. 'Hence, the more calm, sober and considered it' (the Party) 'shows itself to be in its criticism of existing circumstances and its proposals to change the same, the less likelihood is there of a repetition of the present successful move' (introduction of the Anti-Socialist Law) 'by means of which conscious reaction has scared the bourgeoisie out of their wits by holding up the red specter' (p. 88).

In order to relieve the bourgeoisie of the last trace of anxiety, it is to be shown clearly and convincingly that the red specter really is just a specter and doesn't exist. But what is the secret of the red specter, if not the bourgeoisie's fear of the inevitable life-and-death struggle between itself and the proletariat, fear of the unavoidable outcome of the modern class struggle? Just abolish the class struggle, and the bourgeoisie and 'all independent persons' will 'not hesitate to go hand in hand with the proletarians'! In which case the ones to be hoodwinked would be those selfsame proletarians.

Let the party, therefore, prove, by its humble and subdued demeanor, that it has renounced once and for all the 'improprieties and excesses' which gave rise to the Anti-Socialist Law. If it voluntarily undertakes to remain wholly within the bounds of the Anti-Socialist Law, Bismarck and the bourgeoisie will, no doubt, oblige by rescinding what would then be a redundant law!

'Let no one misunderstand us'; we don't want 'to relinquish our party and our programmed but in our opinion we shall have enough to do for years to come is we concentrate our whole strength, our entire energies, on the attainment of certain immediate objectives which must in any case be won before there can be any thought of realizing more ambitious aspirations.'

Then, too, the bourgeois, petty-bourgeois and workers, who 'are now scared off . . . by ambitious demands', will join us en masse. The program is not to be relinquished, but merely postponed for some unspecified period. They accept it not for themselves in their own lifetime but posthumously, as an heirloom for their children and their children's children. Meanwhile they devote their 'whole strength and energies' to all sorts of trifles, tinkering away at the capitalist social order so that at least something should appear to be done without at the same time alarming the bourgeoisie.

There you have the program of the three censors of Zurich. As regards clarity, it leaves nothing to be desired. Least of all so far as we're concerned, since we are still only too familiar with all these catchphrases of 1848. There are the voices of the representatives of the petty bourgeoisie, terrified lest the proletariat, impelled by its revolutionary situation, should 'go too far'. Instead of resolute political opposition general conciliation; instead of a struggle against government and bourgeoisie an attempt to win them over and talk them round; instead of defiant resistance to maltreatment from above humble subjection and the admission that the punishment was deserved. Every historically necessary conflict is reinterpreted as a misunderstanding and every discussion wound up with the assurance: we are, of course, all agreed on the main issue. The men who in 1848 entered the arena as bourgeois democrats might now just as well call themselves Social-Democrats. To the former, the democratic republic was as unattainably remote as the overthrow of the capitalist order is to the latter, and therefore utterly irrelevant to present political practice; one can conciliate, compromise, philanthropies to one's heart's content. The same thing applies to the class struggle between proletariat and bourgeoisie. On paper it is recognized because there is no denying it any longer, but in practice it is glossed over, suppressed, emasculated. The Social Democratic Party should not be a workers' party, it should not bring upon itself the hatred of the bourgeoisie or, for that matter, of anyone else; above all, it should prosecute vigorous propaganda amongst the bourgeoisie; instead of laying stress on ambitious goals which are calculated to frighten off the bourgeoisie, and unattainable anyway in our own generation, it should rather devote all its strength and energies to those petty-bourgeois stopgap reforms which provide new props for the old social order and which might, perhaps, transform the ultimate catastrophe into a gradual, piecemeal and, as far as possible, peaceable process of dissolution. These are the same people who keep up an appearance of ceaseless activity, yet not only do nothing themselves but also try to ensure that nothing at all is done save chin-wagging; the same people whose fear of any kind of action in 1848 and '49 held back the movement at every step and finally brought about its downfall; the same people who never see reaction and then are utterly dumbfounded to find themselves at last in a blind alley in which neither resistance nor flight is possible; the same people who want to confine history within their narrow philistine horizons, and over whose heads history invariably proceeds to the order of the day.

As for their socialist import, this has already been adequately criticized in the Manifesto, Chapter: 'German, or "True" Socialism**'. Wherever the class struggle is thrust aside as a distasteful, 'crude' manifestation, the only basis still left to socialism will be a 'true love of mankind' and empty phrases about 'justice'. ... As for ourselves, there is, considering all our antecedents, only one course open to us. For almost 40 years we have emphasized that the class struggle is the immediate motive force of history and, in particular, that the class struggle between bourgeoisie and proletariat is the great lever of modern social revolution; hence we cannot possibly cooperage with men who seek to eliminate that class struggle from the movement. At the founding of the International we expressly formulated the battle cry: The emancipation of the working class must be achieved by the working class itself. Hence we cannot cooperate with men who say openly that the workers are too uneducated to emancipate themselves, and must first be emancipated from above by philanthropic members of the upper and lower middle classes.

* This refers to the revolutionary struggle on the barricades that took place in Berlin on the 18th and 19th of March 1848 ** See The Communist Manifesto, Chapter III, point C.

Lenin developed an extraordinary struggle against the old revisionism whose bankruptcy produced the First World War. He said: "Revisionism, or the 'revising' of Marxism, is today one of the principal manifestations, if the principal one, of the influence of the bourgeoisie on the proletariat and of bourgeois corruption of the proletarians." Indicating this in 1899 and 1902, respectively:

International Social-Democracy is at present in a state of ideological wavering. Hitherto the doctrines of Marx and Engels were considered to be the firm foundation of revolutionary theory, but voices are now being raised everywhere to proclaim these doctrines inadequate and obsolete. Whoever declares himself to be a Social-Democrat and intends to publish a Social-Democratic organ must define precisely his attitude to a question that is preoccupying the attention of the German Social-Democrats and not of them alone.

We take our stand entirely on the Marxist theoretical position: Marxism was the first to transform socialism from a utopia into a science, to lay a firm foundation for this science, and to indicate the path that must be followed in further developing and elaborating it in all its parts. It disclosed the nature of modern capitalist economy by explaining how the hire of the laborer, the purchase of labor-power, conceals the enslavement of millions of propertyless people by a handful of capitalists, the owners of the land, factories, mines, and so forth. It showed that all modern capitalist development displays the tendency of large-scale production to eliminate petty production and creates conditions that make a socialist system of society possible and necessary. It taught us how to discern, beneath the pall of rooted customs, political intrigues, abstruse laws, and intricate doctrines the class struggle, the struggle between the propertied classes in all their variety and the propertyless mass, the proletariat, which is at the head of all the propertyless. It made clear the real task of a revolutionary socialist party: not to draw up plans for refashioning society, not to preach to the capitalists and their hangers-on about improving the lot of the workers, not to hatch conspiracies, but lo organize the class struggle of the proletariat and to lead this struggle, the ultimate aim of which is the conquest of political power by Me proletariat and the organization of a socialist society. [ Our Program, LCW. , V. 4, pp. 210-211]

Social-Democracy must change from a party of social revolution into a democratic party of social reforms. Bernstein has surrounded this political demand with a whole battery of well-attuned "new" arguments and reasoning. Denied was the possibility of putting socialism on a scientific basis and of demonstrating its necessity and inevitability from the point of view of the materialist conception of history. Denied was the fact of growing impoverishment, the process of proletarization, and the intensification of capitalist contradictions; the very concept, "ultimate aim," was declared to be unsound, and the idea of the dictatorship of the proletariat was completely rejected. Denied was the antithesis in principle between liberalism and socialism. Denied was the theory of the class struggle, on the alleged grounds that it could not be applied to a strictly democratic society governed according to the will of the majority, etc.

Emphasizing its crawling characteristics: "When we speak of fighting opportunism, we must never forget a characteristic feature of present-day opportunism in very sphere, namely, its vagueness, amorphousness, elusiveness. An opportunist, by his very nature, will always evade taking a clear and decisive stand, he will always seek a middle course, he will always wriggle like a snake between two mutually exclusive points of view and try to "agree" with both and reduce is differences of opinion to petty amendments, doubts, innocent and pious suggestions, and so on and so forth." [ One Step Forward, Two Steps Back, LCW, Vol. 7, p. 402]

Similarly, in combating the negation of the class struggle and unmasking the class collaboration of revisionism:

In the sphere of politics, revisionism did really try to revise the foundation of Marxism, namely, the doctrine of the class struggle. Political freedom, democracy and universal suffrage remove the ground for the class struggle we were told and render untrue the old proposition of the Communist Manifesto that the working men have no country. For, they said, since the "will of the majority" prevails in a democracy, one must neither regard the state as an organ of class rule, nor reject alliances with the progressive, social-reform bourgeoisie against the reactionaries.

It cannot be disputed that these arguments of the revisionists amounted to a fairly well-balanced system of views, namely, the old and well-known liberal-bourgeois views. The liberals have always said that bourgeois parliamentarism destroys classes and class divisions, since the right to vote and the right to participate in the government of the country are shared by all citizens without distinction. The whole history of Europe in the second half of the nineteenth century, and the whole history of the Russian revolution in the early twentieth, clearly show how absurd such views are. Economic distinctions are not mitigated but aggravated and intensified under the freedom of "democratic" capitalism. Parliamentarism does not eliminate, but lays bare the innate character even of the most democratic bourgeois republics as organs of class oppression. By helping to enlighten and to organize immeasurably wider masses of the population than those which previously took an active part in political events, parliamentarism does not make for the elimination of crises and political revolutions, but for the maximum intensification of civil war during such revolutions. The events in Paris in the spring or 1871 and the events in Russia in the winter of 1905 showed as clearly as could be how inevitably this intensification comes about. The French bourgeoisie without a moment's hesitation made a deal with the enemy of the whole nation, with the foreign army which had ruined its country, in order to crush the proletarian movement. Whoever does not understand the inevitable inner dialectics of parliamentarism and bourgeois democracy which leads to an even sharper decision of the argument by mass violence than formerly will never be able on the basis of this parliamentarism to conduct propaganda and agitation consistent in principle, really preparing the working-class masses for victorious participation in such "arguments." The experience of alliances, agreements and blocs with the social-reform liberals in the West and with the liberal reformists (Cadets) in the Russian revolution, has convincingly shown that these agreements only blunt the consciousness of the masses, that they do not enhance but weaken the actual significance of their struggle, by linking fighters with elements who are least capable of fighting and most vacillating and treacherous. [Marxism and Revisionism]

And unmasking their treason to socialism and their defense of bourgeois democracy:

History teaches us that no oppressed class ever did, or could, achieve power without going through a period of dictatorship, i.e., the conquest of political power and forcible suppression of the resistance always offered by the exploiters a resistance that is most desperate, most furious, and that stops at nothing. The bourgeoisie, whose domination is now defended by the socialists who denounce "dictatorship in general" and extol "democracy in general," won power in the advanced countries through a series of insurrections, civil wars, and the forcible suppression of kings, feudal lords, slave owners and their attempts at restoration. In books, pamphlets, congress resolutions and propaganda speeches socialists everywhere have thousands and millions of times explained to the people the class nature of these bourgeois revolutions and this bourgeois dictatorship. That is why the present defense of bourgeois democracy under cover of talk about "democracy in general" and the present howls and shouts against proletarian dictatorship under cover of shouts about "dictatorship in general" are an outright betrayal of socialism. They are, in fact, desertion to the bourgeoisie, denial of the proletariat's right to its own, proletarian, revolution, and defense of bourgeois reformism at the very historical juncture when bourgeois reformism throughout the world has collapsed and the war has created a revolutionary situation.

On the other hand, analyzing the labor aristocracy as the social basis of revisionism in the Second Congress of the Communist International: One of the chief causes hampering the revolutionary working-class movement in the developed capitalist countries is the fact that because of their colonial possessions and the super-profits gained by finance capital, etc., the capitalists of these countries have been able to create a relatively larger and more stable labor aristocracy, a section which comprises a small minority of the working class. This minority enjoys better terms of employment and is most imbued with a narrow-minded craft spirit and with petty-bourgeois and imperialist prejudices. It forms the real social pillar of the Second International, of the reformists and the "Centrists"; at present it might even be called the social mainstay of the bourgeoisie. [Theses on Comintern Fundamental Tasks, LWC, Vol. 31, p. 193]

Here we must ask: how is the persistence of such trends in Europe to be explained? Why is this opportunism stronger in Western Europe than in our country? It is because the culture of the advanced countries has been, and still is, the result of their being able to live at the expense of a thousand million oppressed people. It is because the capitalists of these countries obtain a great deal more in this way than they could obtain as profits by plundering the workers in their own countries.

Before the war, it was calculated that the three richest countries Britain, France and Germany got between eight and ten thousand million francs a year from the export of capital alone, apart from other sources.

It goes without saying that, out of this tidy sum, at least five hundred millions can be spent as a sop to the labor leaders and the labor aristocracy, i.e., on all sorts of bribes. The whole thing boils down to nothing but bribery. It is done in a thousand different ways: by increasing cultural facilities in the largest centers, by creating educational institutions, and by providing cooperative, trade union and parliamentary leaders with thousands of cushy jobs. This is done wherever present-day civilized capitalist relations exist. It is these thousands of millions in super profits that form the economic basis of opportunism in the working-class movement.

And regarding revisionism as a product of the bourgeois world view and their influence over the proletariat:

Wherein lies its (revisionism's) inevitability in capitalist society? Why is it more profound than the differences of national peculiarities and of degrees of capitalist development? Because in every capitalist country, side by side with tile proletariat, there are always broad strata of the petty bourgeoisie, small proprietors. Capitalism arose and is constantly arising out of small production. A number of new "middle strata" are inevitably brought into existence again and again by capitalism (appendages to the factory, work at home, small workshops scattered all over the country to meet the requirements of big industries, such as the bicycle and automobile industries, etc.). These new small producers are just as inevitably being cast again into the ranks of the proletariat. It is quite natural that the petty-bourgeois world-outlook should again and again crop up in the ranks of the broad workers' parties.


Thus, the demand for a decisive turn from revolutionary Social-Democracy to bourgeois social-reformism was accompanied by a no less decisive turn towards bourgeois criticism of all the fundamental ideas of Marxism. In view of the fact that this criticism of Marxism has long been directed from the political platform, from university chairs, in numerous pamphlets and in a series of learned treatises, in view of the fact that the entire younger generation of the educated classes has been systematically reared for decades on this criticism, it is not surprising that the "new critical" trend in Social-Democracy should spring up, all complete, like Minerva from the head of Jove. The content of this new trend did not have to grow and take shape, it was transferred bodily from bourgeois to socialist literature.

Lenin qualified the revisionists as "better defenders of the bourgeoisie than the bourgeoisie themselves." In the aforementioned Second Congress he said: "I am not going to expound on the concrete manner in which we should do this; I cover this in my theses, which have already been published. My task consists of indicating the profound economic roots of this phenomenon. It is a protracted disease, and the cure is even more prolonged than the optimists hoped it would be. Opportunism is our main enemy. The opportunism in the highest ranks of the workers' movement is not proletarian socialism, but bourgeois socialism. Practice has shown that the people active in the workers' movement who cling to the opportunist tendency are better defenders of the bourgeoisie than the bourgeoisie themselves. Without their leadership of the workers the bourgeoisie could not remain in power. This is not only proven by the Kerensky regime in Russia, it is also well proven by the democratic republic in Germany, headed by the social-democratic government, it is proven by the attitude of Albert Thomas towards his bourgeois government. It is proven by the analogous experience in England and the United States. That is where our principal enemy is, and we must defeat this enemy. We must abandon this congress with the firm determination to carry this struggle in all our parties through to the end. That is our principal task." And on "The Only Marxist Line":

(Engels draws a distinction between the "bourgeois labor party" of the old trade unions the privileged minority and the "lowest mass," the real majority, and appeals to the latter, who are not infected by "bourgeois respectability." This is the essence of Marxist tactics) Neither we nor anyone else can calculate precisely what portion of the proletariat is following and will follow the social-chauvinists and opportunists. This will be revealed only by the struggle, it will be definitely decided only by the socialist revolution. But we know for certain that the "defenders of the fatherland" in the imperialist war represent only a minority. And it is therefore our duty, if we wish to remain socialists, to go down lower and deeper, to the real masses; this is the whole meaning and the whole purport of the struggle against opportunism. By exposing the fact that the opportunists and social-chauvinists are in reality betraying and selling the interests of the masses, that they are defending the temporary privileges of a minority of the workers, that they are the vehicles of bourgeois ideas and influences, that they are really allies and agents of the bourgeoisie, we teach the masses to appreciate their true political interests, to fight for socialism and for the revolution through all the long and painful vicissitudes of imperialist wars and imperialist armistices.

The only Marxist line in the world labor movement is to explain to the masses the inevitability and necessity of breaking with opportunism, to educate them for revolution by waging a relentless struggle against opportunism, to utilize the experiences of the war to expose, not conceal, the utter vileness of national-liberal labor politics. [Imperialism and the Split in Socialism]

In the same way, he called for the defense of Marxism and its development despite the screams of the revisionists: And we now ask: Has anything new been introduced into this theory by its loud-voiced "renovators" who are raising so much noise in our day and have grouped themselves around the German socialist Bernstein? Absolutely nothing. Not by a single step have they advanced the science which Marx and Engels enjoined us to develop; they have not taught the proletariat any new methods of struggle; they have only retreated, borrowing fragments of backward theories and preaching to the proletariat, not tho theory of struggle, but the theory of concession concession to the most vicious enemies of the proletariat, the governments and bourgeois parties who never tire of seeking new means of baiting the socialists. Plekhanov, one of the founders and leaders of Russian Social-Democracy, was entirely right in ruthlessly criticizing Bernstein's latest "critiqued'; the views of Bernstein have now been rejected by the representatives of the German workers as well (at the Hannover Congress).

We anticipate a flood of accusations for these words; the shouts will rise that we want to convert the socialist party into an order of "true believers" that persecutes"heretics" for deviations from "dogma," for every independent opinion, and so forth. We know about all these fashionable and trenchant phrases. Only there is not a grain of truth or sense in them. There can be no strong socialist party without a revolutionary theory which unites all socialists, from which they draw all their convictions, and which they apply in their methods of struggle and means of action. To defend such a theory, which to the best of your knowledge you consider to be true, against unfounded attacks and attempts to corrupt it is not to imply that you are an enemy of all criticism. We do not regard Marx's theory as something completed and inviolable; on the contrary, we are convinced that it has only laid the foundation stone of the science which socialists must develop in all directions if they wish to keep pace with life. We think that an independent elaboration of Marx's theory is especially essential for socialists; for this theory provides only general guiding principles, which, in particular, are applied in England differently than in France, in France differently than in Germany, and in Germany differently than in Russia. [LCW., Our Program, V. 4, pp. 211-212]

And analyzing the sinking of the old revisionism, in his very important work The Collapse of the Second International of 1915, Lenin taught us:

To the class-conscious workers, socialism is a serious conviction, not a convenient screen to conceal petty-bourgeois conciliatory and nationalist-appositional striving. By the collapse of the International they understand the disgraceful treachery to their convictions which was displayed by most of the official Social-Democratic parties, treachery to the most solemn declarations in their speeches at the Stuttgart and Basle international congresses, and in the resolutions of these congresses, etc. Only those can fail to see this treachery who do not wish to do so or do not find it to their advantage to see it. If we would formulate the question in a scientific fashion, i.e., from the standpoint of class relations in modern society, we will have to state that most of the Social-Democratic parties, and at their head the German Party first and foremost the biggest and most influential party in the Second International have taken sides with their General Staffs, their governments, and their bourgeoisie, against the proletariat. This is an event of historic importance, one that calls for a most comprehensive analysis. It has long been conceded that, for all the horror and misery they entail, wars bring at least the following more or less important benefit they ruthlessly reveal, unmask and destroy much that is corrupt, outworn and dead in human institutions. [The Collapse of the Second International, LCW, V. 21, pp.207-8]

Opportunism means sacrificing the fundamental interests of the masses to the temporary interests of an insignificant minority of the workers or, in other words, an alliance between a section of the workers and the bourgeoisie. directed against the mass of the proletariat. The war has made such an alliance particularly conspicuous and inescapable. Opportunism was engendered in the course of decades by the special features in the period of the development of capitalism when the comparatively peaceful and cultured life of a stratum of privileged workingmen "bourgeoisified" them, eve them crumbs from the table of their national capitalists, and isolated them from the suffering, misery and revolutionary temper of the impoverished and ruined masses. [Ibid., pp. 242-243]

Social-chauvinism is an opportunism which has matured to such a degree, grown so strong and brazen during the long period of comparatively "peaceful" capitalism, so definite in its political ideology, and so closely associated with the bourgeoisie and the governments, that the existence of such a trend within the Social-Democratic workers' parties cannot be tolerated. [Ibid., p 249]

Opportunism to speak on a European scale was in its adolescent stage, as it were, before the war. With the outbreak of the war it grew to manhood and its "innocence'' end youth cannot be restored. An entire social stratum, consisting of parliamentarians, journalists, labor officials, privileged office personnel, and certain strata of the proletariat has sprung up and has become amalgamated with its own national bourgeoisie, which has proved fully capable of appreciating and "adapting" it. The course of history cannot be turned back or checked we can and must go fearlessly onward, from the preparatory legal working-class organizations, which are in the grip of opportunism, to revolutionary organizations that know how not to confine themselves to legality and are capable of safeguarding themselves against opportunist treachery, organizations of a proletariat that is beginning a "struggle for power," a struggle for the overthrow of the bourgeoisie. [ibid., p. 250]

And in Opportunism and the Collapse of the Second International of 1916:

The relatively "peaceful" character of the period between 1871 and 1914 served to foster opportunism first as a mood, then as a trend, until finally it formed a group or stratum among the labor bureaucracy and petty-bourgeois fellow-travelers. These elements were able to gain control of the labor movement only by paying lip-service to revolutionary aims and revolutionary tactics. They were able to win the confidence of the masses only by their protestations that all this "peaceful" work served to prepare the proletarian revolution. This contradiction was a boil which just had to burst, and burst it has. Here is the question: is it worth trying, as Kautsky and Co. are doing, to force the pus back into the body for the sake of "unity" (with the pus), or should the pus be removed as quickly and as thoroughly as possible, regardless of the pang of pain caused by the process, to help bring about the complete recovery of the body of the labor movement.

Chairman Mao Tsetung developed a great struggle against the modern revisionism of Khrushchev and his henchmen on a world level, aiming against the sinister restoration of capitalism in the Soviet Union, unmasking it totally and completely as he did in the "Polemic concerning the general line of the International Communist Movement," a document written under his personal leadership. Nevertheless, his most transcendental struggle against revisionism was unleashed in China itself by way of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. In his "Speech at the Second Plenary Session of the VIII Central Committee," in 1956, he said:

I would like to say a few words about the Twentieth Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. I think there are two "swords": one is Lenin and the other Stalin. The sword of Stalin has now been discarded by the Russians. Gomulka and some people in Hungary have picked it up to stab at the Soviet Union and oppose so-called Stalinism. The Communist Parties of many European countries are also criticizing the Soviet Union, and their leader is Togliatti. The imperialists also use this sword to slay people with. Dulles, for instance, has brandished it for some time. This sword has not been lent out, it has been thrown out. We Chinese have not thrown it away. First, we protect Stalin, and, second, we at the same time criticize his mistakes, and we have written the article "On the Historical Experience of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat." Unlike some people who have tried to defame and destroy Stalin, we are acting in accordance with objective reality.

As for the sword of Lenin, hasn't it too been discarded to a certain extent by some Soviet leaders? In my view, it has been discarded to a considerable extent. Is the October Revolution still I valid? Can it still serve as the example for all countries? Khrushchev's report at the Twentieth Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union says it is possible to seize state power by the parliamentary road, that is to say, it is no longer necessary for all countries to learn from the October Revolution. Once this gate is opened, by and large Leninism is thrown away.

The doctrine of Leninism has developed Marxism. In what respects has it done so? First, in world outlook, that is, in materialism and dialectics; and second, in revolutionary theory and tactics, particularly on the questions of class struggle, the dictatorship of the proletariat and the political party of the proletariat. And then there are Lenin's teachings on socialist construction. Beginning from the October Revolution of 1917, construction went on in the midst of revolution, and thus Lenin had seven years of practical experience in construction, something denied to Marx. It is precisely these fundamental principles of Marxism Leninism that we have been learning. [Speech at the Second Plenary Session of the Eight Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, SW V. V, pp. 341-2]

And insisting on the same and on those who vacillate in the face of storms, the abandonment of Marxism and the attack against advanced things, in his "Speech to a Conference of Secretaries" in 1957:

During the past year, several storms raged on the world scene. At the Twentieth Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union they went for Stalin in a big way. Subsequently the imperialists stirred up two storms against communism, and there were two stormy debates in the international communist movement. Amidst these storms, the impact and losses were quite big in the case of some Communist Parties in Europe and the Americas but smaller for the Communist Parties in the Orient. With the convocation of the Twentieth Congress of the