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Friday, October 29, 2010

Different societies take different approaches to revolution

A few weeks ago the Communist (Maoist) Party of Afghanistan, posted a critical article about the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA, called “Our position on the Revolutionary Communist Party's new line in its Manifesto and Constitution.”

Among the complaints it was;

“In text of the RCP's new constitution––and also in its Manifesto that constantly refers to "Bob Avakian's new synthesis"––there is no mention of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism. Nor is there is any mention of Lenin and Mao in the constitution itself. Furthermore, Marx and Engels are referred to only once, while Avakian's name appears continuously. Lenin and Mao are mentioned only in the appendix.”

One can hardly blame them for this statement as it makes the RCP look as if they are putting Bob Avakian as the newest form of Maoism. It looks as if he is the next great thinker next to Mao. The RCP suffers from the “cult of personality” and they end up acting like a Jehovah’s Witness trying to spread the news about Avakian.

But a lot of this brings up the differences between a developed country and one that is poor and underdeveloped. That can be seen in this part of their statements;
“In the RCP's new constitution, a final general insurrection that would lead to the overthrow of the ruling imperialist power and the establishment of the new revolutionary proletarian power is not explicitly expressed as a general armed insurrection. The title chosen for this subject in the RCP's new constitution is unclear and ambiguous: " To seize power, the revolutionary people must meet and defeat the enemy." The text following this title vaguely discusses the "… for the revolutionary struggle to succeed, it will need to meet and defeat that violent repressive force of the old exploitative and oppressive order. " without specifically and concretely examining the need for the initiation and continuation of general armed insurrection. Moreover, while the United Front under the leadership of the proletariat is separately mentioned as a strategy for the initiation and continuation of revolution, there is no discussion of the other weapon of revolution from the three weapons of revolution––that of the revolutionary armed forces. In the same section the RCP writes: "... the ruling class and the reactionary armed forces (and other reactionaries) it is able to marshal, on the one side, and the revolutionary movement of millions, and tens of millions, on the other—will face off. Society will then become more or less "compressed" around one or the other of the contending "poles." The concept of the armed insurrection and the role of the revolutionary armed forces under the leadership of revolutionary proletarian party are also unclear.”

The idea of an armed insurrection cannot be openly stated by the RCP because they operate legally and try to spread their message with a legal party, legal demonstrations, legal news papers and legal web sites. In many countries there is no ground given to dissent at all. Communist Parties can be banned. Its leaders and its members can be jailed. In many underdeveloped countries, it is winner takes all. The leader leads and those who don’t follow are arrested, tortured or killed.

While there have been revolutions in less developed countries, France is the only industrialized country to come close to toppling a modern imperialist-capitalist government, in 1968. Part of the problem back then was the Soviet inspired Communist Party of France opposed the revolt. A revolt is taking place in France today. There have also been revolts in Greece and heavy political actions in Italy. If such a revolution takes place in a developed country in the short run, it will probably be in one of those countries rather than the US.

Certainly we don’t believe the phony US democracy is going to allow such dissent a Maoist Party. The government is actually a theocracy and US leaders know it. The Afghan Maoists operate underground and it makes sense for them to propose armed insurrection.

I’ve often quoted Herbert Marcuse, but he writes mainly for the industrialized countries with a large middle class. Much of what they have is missing in many underdeveloped countries, such as ownership of cars, clean water, electricity, education, and access to health care. If there is no history of political pluralism and the standard of living is low, the approach a party takes to winning over the people is going to be different. Marcuse may be irrelevant to such a society.

There are many Marxist that have focused on less developed countries. Abimael Guzmán came up with his own ideas on Peru. He took ideas from José Carlos Mariátegui. Prachanda has his own ideas about revolution in Nepal. Each country is different and will take ideas from different sources.

We all share a common ideology, Marxist-Leninist-Maoist. However, we will Taylor it to our various conditions so that we can succeed.

-សតិវ អតុ

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