By Ard Kinera and the editorial group of Red Flag
“Chairman Mao emphasized that we must always be concerned about revisionism because it is the main danger facing the world revolution. So we also take into consideration the situation outside our ranks, since any rightist tendency in the Party, expressed in attitudes, ideas, approaches, and positions of a rightist nature, has to do with ideological processes, with the repercussions of the class struggle, and the campaigns of the reactionary State, with the actions of revisionism itself in our country, with the counterrevolutionary activities of imperialism, especially the contention between the two superpowers, and the sinister role of revisionism on a world scale.”Chairman Gonzalo, in the El Diario interview of 1988
This is the second part of a longer article. In dividing into two, we tried to focus the first part on issues of burning importance, and place most secondary issues in this second part. We also put some paragraphs here that deal with issues that has been addressed earlier by Ard Kinera or other Maoists.
All the references to the article as a whole is attached to both parts.
People’s war was not synthesized by Marx or Lenin
“Marx and Engels had long developed this theory on the necessity of armed revolution by the masses of toiling people led by the working class, further clarifying the need to smash the existing bourgeois state machinery and establish a dictatorship of the proletariat in order to pursue and complete the socialist revolution. (…)
So, yes, in this sense, there should be no debate about the universal applicability of people’s war in all countries ruled by the big bourgeoisie and its reactionary allies. Had Kinera kept his polemics within these bounds, about “people’s war” being the equivalent of “armed revolution,” then there would be essentially no debate on the question.”
This is certainly true. But the point is, people’s war was not developed, not synthesized by Marx or Lenin, but by Mao – and later made part of the definition of Maoism by Chairman Gonzalo. If people’s war did not mean people’s war, as understood by Mao and then Maoists, but simply was another word for something else, then yes, Belisario would be correct. Then, there would be no debate. And also, there might not even be Maoism.
Maoism was understood in the furnace of people’s war in Peru. Without people’s war, no Maoism – and no Maoism without people’s war.
Communist Party of Peru writes in ‘On Marxism-Leninism-Maoism’, part of their ‘Fundamental Documents’:
“The People’s War is the military theory of the international proletariat; in it are summarized, for the first time in a systematic and complete form, the theoretical and practical experience of the struggles, military actions, and wars waged by the proletariat, and the prolonged experience of the people’s armed struggle and especially of the incessant wars in China. It is with Chairman Mao that the proletariat attains its military theory; nevertheless, there is much confusion and misunderstanding on this issue.”
We understand perfectly clearly, why Belisario and Sison prefer to attack us instead of addressing the CPP and Gonzalo directly. But wouldn’t it be more honest it they did? Or if they answered the documents of the ‘El Maoista’, of the Maoist Parties and Organizations of Latin America, or the Communist Party of Brazil (Red Faction)? No, they prefer directing the articles against us – while the attack in reality is against the red line put forward by these great Parties and Organizations. It is transparent why they do so, and comrades should make a note of this. To be blunt, they do so because they think this is a good tactic. One more of their special so called tactics.
On the other hand, the contradiction is still made very clear. Belisario is promoting a right opportunist line.
On strategy and revolutionary situations
“However, Kinera glosses over two important corollaries to this fundamental principle of Marxism-Leninism. First, his arguments assume (even though not directly) that a revolutionary situation currently (or perennially) exists in all countries. Therefore all communist parties (CPs), if they are truly engaged in revolution, must adopt a corresponding military strategy and place armed struggle on their practical work agenda. And second, he insists that the Maoist strategy of protracted people’s war is applicable to industrial capitalist countries.”
To clear this “misunderstanding”; we simply adhere to Chairman Mao and Chairman Gonzalo. As Mao stated, the main tendency of our time is revolution. This is the era of proletarian revolution and the demise of imperialism. As stated in the ‘International Line’ of the Communist Party of Peru:
“In the current situation and in perspective we have entered the strategic offensive of the world revolution, within the “50 to 100 years” in which imperialism and world reaction shall be sunk and we shall enter the stage when the proletariat settles into power and establishes its dictatorship.”
Every act in this era, for the communist, is conducted for the people’s war. Our position is not that there is a permanent revolutionary situation in each and every country. But it is our position that the revolution in all countries take form of people’s war, and is part of the Proletarian World Revolution. The military theory of the proletariat is not a strategy for a revolutionary situation, it is a theory that is integral part of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism. It is simply the sole and only military theory of the Proletariat, on which all revolutionary strategy must be based.
Communists must indeed place armed struggle on their agenda, both in theory and practice. It cannot wait for the revolutionary situation to appear. First it must be defined, then prepared, then initiated and then developed – in each and every country.
Chairman Mao and the people’s war
Contrary to the obscure and subjectivist distortions of Belisario, there is no coincidence in the term ‘Maoism’. Chairman Mao was the great leader who developed the guiding thought of the Chinese revolution, and through it he developed Marxism in its three realms; philosophy, economy and socialism. And he developed the theory of people’s war. These are objective facts that are also acknowledged by bourgeois military theorists, like Thomas Marks, as Kinera wrote in an earlier article.
They do not propose that Maos works as only relevant to insurgency in semi-colonial and semi-feudal countries. Instead, their position mirrors, from the bourgeois side, the position of Maoists, that hold people’s war to be universal, or “unavoidable” when the question of revolution is raised. In this question, it is of no relevance if this was fully grasped by Mao himself in 1938. Firstly, because Mao lived on for almost 40 more years, and in these four decades, he led the victory in the people’s war of China, the socialist construction and the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. He led the charge against modern revisionism in the form of Khrushchev, and was recognised as the leader of the International Communist Movement. And Mao Zedong Thought inspired countless Parties and Organizations all over the world, and more than a few revolutionary wars.
How these four decades formed or inspired Mao’s thoughts is yet to be studied by us. It is obvious that the first letters to the revisionist leadership of the Soviet Union in the great polemic, differs quite a bit from the last ones. Also the letters on Togliatti and Thorez shows what great lengths the Chinese leadership went to in the struggle to maintain unity, while fighting right opportunism in the movement. There is development, and this development culminated in the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, and an all out war on revisionism and capitalist roaders. We do not have the full picture of the development in the military thought of Mao, from 1938 till the peak of Cultural Revolution thirty years later. But it must have been some leaps in his understanding. Any how, Maoism as synthesized by the CPP and Chairman Gonzalo, includes the military theory of Mao as an integral part and as being universal. What the bourgeois yankee Thomas Marks understand, Belisario does not, people’s war is the theory of insurgency, it is the military theory of proletarian world revolution and its two currents; the national liberation movement and the proletarian movement.
As the Communist Party of Peru writes in ‘On Marxism-Leninism-Maoism’:
“A key and decisive question is the understanding of the universal validity of people’s war and its subsequent application taking into account the different types of revolution and the specific conditions of each revolution. To clarify this key issue it is important to consider that no insurrection like that of Petrograd, the anti-fascist resistance, or the European guerrilla movements in the Second World War have been repeated, as well as considering the armed struggles that are presently being waged in Europe. In the final analysis, the October Revolution was not only an insurrection but a revolutionary war that lasted for several years. Consequently, in the imperialist countries the revolution can only be conceived as a revolutionary war which today is simply people’s war.”
As the reader might notice, the Party does not refer to a quotation of Mao to argue the universality of people’s war, but it argues reality. It sums up the experience of the national liberation movement and the proletarian revolution in the light of Mao’s theory. It points out the fact that there has been no – lacking a better word – “Petrograd style” of revolution since the Russian revolution, and – importantly – they understand also this revolution as people’s war, lasting several years. They refer to the armed struggles of Europe, like the Irish armed struggle still being waged, as something to be considered in understanding the universal validity of people’s war. We do not want to fall into some kind of empirio criticism, like Belisario later does, but still remembering the words of Mao in his article On Practice:
“Marxists hold that man’s social practice alone is the criterion of the truth of his knowledge of the external world.”
Belisario goes on explaining Sison and denouncing people’s war in imperialist countries:
“Sison’s point is that in the highly urbanized and other highly developed areas of capitalist countries, under current conditions when there is no full-scale war and revolutionary crisis, a people’s army that launches tactical offensives with no sizeable mass base (at least equivalent to rural guerrilla bases in countries such as China and Vietnam) will be hard-pressed to counter-maneuver, employ guerrilla tactics, retain initiative, and hit back at the enemy’s weak points, and much less be able to consolidate and expand their bases.”
We hold this statement to be falsified by the Irish Republican Army, waging such a guerilla war for many decades against a British imperialism not under conditions of full-scale war and revolutionary crisis. The statement is simply proven wrong by “man’s social practice”. Further on, as we have referred to before, there is experience of armed struggle in most imperialist countries, both during war and fascism, and not.
Further on, many semi-feudal and semi-colonial countries are today highly urbanized. The communications of such countries are highly developed today compared to rural China in 1938. Still, the people’s war continues in the Philippines, India, Turkey and Peru. In Nepal, the people’s war raged for ten years and engulfed 80% of the country, from 1996 to 2006. This in small country situated between two hostile giants (China and India). Even though the people’s war was betrayed by the leadership who entered parliamentary cretinism and succumbed to bureaucratic capitalism, it proved the universality of people’s war again. We mention here five countries distinctly different from China of 1938.
From specific to universal, from particular to general
Further, we must point out, that what is a specific characteristic of one revolution, might later become acknowledged as universally applicable. One such example we find when Stalin writes about the strategy and tactics of the October revolution. Here, he points out two specific characteristics, the first being:
“Thus, the undivided leadership of one party, the Communist Party, as the principal factor in the preparation for October — such is the characteristic feature of the October Revolution, such is the first specific feature of the tactics of the Bolsheviks in the period of preparation for October.”
Would not this become an integral and universally applicable part of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism? We claim it is, and that this is understood and acknowledged by every maoist. In this text of Stalin, we see how he with greatness elaborate on this specific characteristic of the Russian revolution, different from the experience of the Paris Commune, but this “characteristic feature” was then replicated in China and in all other people’s wars later on. What was applied as specific has been proven universal. This is an example of the Marxist spiral of knowledge. From the practice to theory to new enriched practice to new enriched theory. What Stalin present as a specific characteristic in this text from 1923, he includes in his writing of the synthesis of Marxism-Leninism, the second and higher stage of Marxism, in the eternal article ‘Concerning Questions of Leninism’ written in 1926:
“Lenin uses the word dictatorship of the Party not in the strict sense of the word (“power based on the use of force”), but in the figurative sense, in the sense of its undivided leadership.”
Stalin does not here talk about Leninism as specific for Russia, but define it like this in ‘The Foundations of Leninism’:
“Leninism is Marxism of the era of imperialism and the proletarian revolution. To be more exact, Leninism is the theory and tactics of the proletarian revolution in general, the theory and tactics of the dictatorship of the proletariat in particular.”
Make note of how unapologetically Stalin not only says theory, but also tactics. Stalin cannot be a great Communist in Belisarios view, since such only “carefully applied theory to grapple with the specific characteristics of their own countries and solve concrete problems of their own revolutions” and “did not set out to “synthesize” a “universally applicable” theory on how to wage armed revolution”.
Stalin writes in ‘The Foundation of Leninism”:
“Some say that Leninism is the application of Marxism to the conditions that are peculiar to the situation in Russia. This definition contains a particle of truth, but not the whole truth by any means. Lenin, indeed, applied Marxism to Russian conditions, and applied it in a masterly way. But if Leninism were only the application of Marxism to the conditions that are peculiar to Russia it would be a purely national and only a national, a purely Russian and only a Russian, phenomenon. We know, however, that Leninism is not merely a Russian, but an international phenomenon rooted in the whole of international development. That is why I think this definition suffers from one-sidedness.”
The development of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism follows the principles of the cycle of knowledge as described by Mao in ‘On contradiction’:
“These are the two processes of cognition: one, from the particular to the general, and the other, from the general to the particular. Thus cognition always moves in cycles and (so long as scientific method is strictly adhered to) each cycle advances human knowledge a step higher and so makes it more and more profound.“
The concrete application is the particular and the summing up of experience, systematizing it and making a synthesis is to find what is general, what is universal, and thus to advance human knowledge.
“Leninism is Marxism of the era of imperialism and the proletarian revolution. To be more exact, Leninism is the theory and tactics of the proletarian revolution in general, the theory and tactics of the dictatorship of the proletariat in particular.”
One gets the notion, Belisario and Sison are amongst those who believe the process of developing the Marxist theory of universal laws and of tactics and strategy of the proletarian revolution in general, was finished sometime around this writings of Stalin. Belisario admits that:
“The basic principles of armed revolution by the proletariat and other allied classes were further elaborated by Lenin in his many works.”
But he does not grant Mao the same status. In other words, the principles of armed revolution has not been developed further since Lenin, or at least since Stalin synthesized these. If Belisario even recognise Stalin’s synthesis of Leninism. If so, Belisarios article on “the so called universality of people’s war” should be the perfect occasion to at least mention the universal contributions of Mao in the area of revolutionary war. But when given the opportunity, Belisario uses it only to make Mao “one of many”, in the company of three Vietnamese leaders and José Maria Sison. Sison himself, in the texts of ‘Philippine Society and Revolution’ (1970), says:
“The fundamental strategic line of fighting for national democracy as the first stage in the longer-term struggle for socialism had still to be firmly grasped by the Philippine Left, almost fifteen years after the 1949 victory of the Chinese Revolution led by Mao had overwhelmingly reaffirmed the universal validity of Lenin’s revolutionary strategy for semicolonial, semifeudal societies.”
“The Philippine Revolution is today illumined by the great universal truth of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tsetung Thought.”
This is the words of Belisarios promoter Sison nearly 50 years ago. How does this compare to the writings of Belisario and Sison today? And, our point here is not to focus on the content, but the method.
On the other hand, today Sison salutes the bolivarian government in Venezuela, upholding Chavez and Maduro. So it seems people’s war and new democracy is not universal in the semi-colonial and semi-feudal countries either in his opinion. Not any more.
What revolutionary parties in the imperialist countries apply electoralism today?
Belisario writes, after some juvenile slander:
“In short, Kinera disdains the work in reactionary trade unions and bourgeois parliaments that Lenin (in “Left-Wing” Communism and other works) had so patiently explained as important part of revolutionary tasks during a non-revolutionary period.”
Again, Belisario does not argue facts, when he argue. As he simply refer to Mao, he now simply refer to Lenin. Why is this thesis of Lenin in 1920, true in 2019? The point made of Chairman Mao and Chairman Gonzalo is that our era is not the same as in 1920, they claim this is the era of sweeping away of imperialism. And Gonzalo states it is the strategic offensive of the proletarian world revolution. In this era, we have eight decades more experience since Lenin wrote his book against the infantile disorder of “Left-Communism”. Just as we have six decades more experience since Mao’s main work on protracted war. Have we not learned anything from this experience worth summing up?
On the one hand, Belisario claim all the classics wrote almost purely for their own particular and specific situations. On the other hand, he treats what they wrote – but only arbitrarily – as some dogma never to be questioned. What a gymnastics performance! Yes, we disdain the practice of the “proletarian revolutionaries” of Belisarios, “patiently accumulating strength”, because we know too well what this coded words really mean. But Belisario does not mention these patient revolutionaries. Who are they? Which parties and organizations in the imperialist countries does he have in mind?
We know which “revolutionaries” are engulfed in elections and trade unions run by the social democrats. We do not believe for a second that they are really paving way for proletarian revolution. They willingly give their names, pictures and addresses to the class enemy. They do not study military theory. Ask them Belisario, what tactics and strategies they have for revolution, and they will only present tactics of gathering votes. And most of them does not even succeed very well in this.
Let it be clear that our disdain is not for the heroic fighters and cadre of the Communist Party of the Philippines, even though we disagree with the line of Sison and the line of participation in elections. We have nothing but the utmost respect for their sacrifice and wish their struggle to succeed. We also respect all comrades that disagree or have questions in these matters. We are not to arrogant to see where we come from, what errors we have made ourselves, and our shortcomings. But we have no respect for the parliamentary cretinism of the legalist left of the imperialist countries. This is a comfortable choice in our countries. It is the path of least resistance, but it does not lead to revolution. The decades have spoken, their practice is known. They are being integrated into the reactionary state, or they are withering away of old age.
“Sison’s remark about not seeing “any Maoist party proclaiming and actually starting” PPW in imperialist countries was obviously to show that truly serious Maoist formations in these countries see such course of immediate action as not viable for now. Kinera’s response to this is dishonest and disingenuous: he basically challenges Sison to publicly reveal “any Maoist party not adhering to the strategy of People’s War and being of such quantity and quality” (note that he dropped the word “protracted”). This is a cunning trap.“
It is no trap, it is simply asking for some direct and honest talk. What Parties and Organizations does Belisario and Sison support in the imperialist countries? Preferable “Maoist”, not adhering to the universality of People’s War, of some quantity and quality, and doing patient parliamentary and trade union work? If there is such a party, it should be easy for Belisario to remember or promote it. Where is it?
On tactical unity and bolshevik bank robbers
“He simply condemns it as “the totally dominating strategy” of practically all Left forces in Europe, including those that “adhere to Mao Zedong Thought” (but not Gonzaloites). This shows that Kinera is a hopeless infantile sectarian who cannot even derive good points of tactical unity with other revolutionaries and progressives who do not kowtow to Gonzalo Thought.”
Belisarios point, if there is one, is lost to us. We do not define anyone as “gonzaloite”. It is simply a derogatory term. Why should we seek “tactical unity” with those who find us infantile and speaks of “your dear Gonzalo” and similar ways to mock Chairman Gonzalo? By all means, mock us all you want. But the slander against Gonzalo speaks volumes to what kind of dark agenda Belisario is pushing. We have no problem uniting in alliances and fronts with most people we have some disagreements with. But in the two line-struggle, when we struggle over revolutionary theory, we do not make “tactical unity” with right opportunism. We don’t blur facts for tactical purposes. We are not debating the basis of unity for a single street protest, but the general line of the international communist movement.
“Kinera thus dishonestly conjures an illusion of a continuous PPW in a capitalist country. He conveniently forgets about the years of reaction (1907-1910) when the revolution was in full retreat, and the years of revival (1910-1914) when the Bolsheviks pursued tactics combining illegal work (but not yet armed struggle!) with the “obligatory utilisation” of many legal channels including winning seats in the reactionary parliament.”
In 1907 and the years after, bolshevik armed groups did many actions in Kaukasus, amongst them robberies and attacks on reactionaries. Is this not armed struggle? Was it only in Kaukasus such actions took place? Lenin and Stalin was linked to one of the largest heists in contemporary Europe. Not armed struggle? The bolsheviks waged both legal and illegal struggle, also armed struggle, in 1904 and 1905, also in the period of reaction and war, and from 1917 to 1921 it was insurrections, civil war and national liberation war. Is it dishonest to view this as protracted people’s war? To view it as protracted, and not a quick insurrection after prolonged accumulation of forces? We do not see the dishonesty on our part.
On the industrial and non-industrial proletariat
“Kinera claims that “[those] employed in public or private services … outnumber the industrial proletarians in most imperialist countries.” He must be reminded that the modern industrial proletariat includes such service workers, insofar as their class situation is most analogous to industrial workers.”
This Belisario writes to defend Sisons words in the matter. This is not a central issue in our text, but if they want to not create confusion, they could simply say proletariat, and not ‘industrial proletariat’.
In his own class analysis of the Philippines, Sison writes:
“The proletariat refers principally to the industrial workers and secondarily to other wage-earners.” and “The industrial workers are in land, water and rail transport; mines and quarries; logging areas and lumber yards; sugar, coconut and abaca-stripping mills; public utility plants; food processing; beverage plants and breweries; tannery and shoe manufacturing; textile factories; printing presses; merchandising firms; chemical and drug factories; soap and cosmetic factories; oil refineries; flour mills; cement plants; pulp and paper manufacturing; scrap metal and steel processing plants; and several other enterprises and industrial lines.”
Thus, in the Philippines Sison makes a distinction in the proletariat, between industrial proletariat and “other wage-earners”. But in the imperialist countries, the whole of the proletariat is industrial? And we are the confused ones?
Again, this is not a principal question of this debate, but Belisario should really learn to pick his battles. Of course service workers are proletarians, and part of the modern proletariat which was born in the industrial revolution. But to us it does not make sense to define all proletarians as industrial workers.
Belisario tend to start shouting when he is arguing a weak point. He writes:
“Apparently, Kinera automatically excludes from the industrial proletariat those sizeable working masses employed in major service firms in transport and storage, communications and media, health, and so on. There is no such class as “service proletariat” mechanically separate from the modern industrial proletariat, as if they are boxed off from the intense class struggles and the aspirations for socialism.”
Apparently, Belisario is a charlatan. We argue no such point against the service proletariat being part of the proletariat, that is the modern working class. We have never claimed there to be a class distinction between different proletarians. The proletariat is one class. But, as Sison did when analysing the classes of the Philippines, and Mao in his analysis of the classes in China, we acknowledge there to be different strata and sectors of the proletariat. We do not in any way think this sectors to be boxed of from each other. The stratification is more important than the sectorisation, that is, the division between upper, middle and lower strata is more important in our view, than the different areas of industries and work of the proletarians. But for the sake of clarity, it makes little sense to claim hospitals and shopping malls to be ‘industry’. To be clear – there is only one class, but we would hold that insisting on calling our class the industrial proletariat, and not simply the proletariat, could be quite confusing. We again hold, that the most important point to emphasize is that the imperialist countries are imperialist, not that they are industrialized.
The workers’ militia of Sison and Trotsky
“But here Kinera turns ballistic again. He argues about “strict gun laws in Europe” (which of course was not Sison’s point). He also wrongly associates Sison’s ideas with the creation of Russian workers’ militia (which emerged in the extremely revolutionary situation of 1917 and certainly was not just Trotsky’s idea but incorporated into the Bolshevik program). The Red Guards were a creation of the Bolsheviks and the masses, not Kinera’s idol Trotsky.”
When people reads emotions into the texts of others, it is often a case of “what the heart is full of, spills out of the mouth”. The text of Belisario is full of “Kinera goes ballistic” and such claims. It spices up the text of Belisario, but the one coming off as “ballistic” is himself. How he ends up in making Trotsky an idol of ours, he does not try to explain. But when we firstly referred to Trotsky, we referred to something concrete, namely the ‘Transitional Program’ of his “International”. Here the trotskyites wrote:
“A new upsurge of the mass movement should serve not only to increase the number of these units but also to unite them according to neighborhoods, cities, regions. It is necessary to give organized expression to the valid hatred of the workers toward scabs and bands of gangsters and fascists. It is necessary to advance the slogan of a workers’ militia as the one Serious guarantee for the inviolability of workers’ organizations, meetings and press.”
This was not proposed for Russia during the revolution as Belisario is talking about, but as a part of the proposed general line of the international workers movement and program of the Trotsky conspiracy. We were reminded of this, when we read Sisons first article, where he wrote:
“It is therefore possible to organize proletarians with firearms as sporting gun clubs, as community self-defense organizations and as voluntary security for public events and structures. But of course it is unwise to make displays of armed groups of people and at the same time provocatively declare themselves in opposition to the capitalist state, its army and police.”
What Trotsky recommended in 1938, is qualitatively just the same as Sison puts forward. Even the examples mentioned is quite similar. The nature of the ‘Transitional program’ was one of centrism and reformism. It merges two stages into one transitional stage, and merges two types of program, the long term and the short term, into one. It is an error typical of trotskyism.
Our position is that this line does not apply for most imperialist countries today. For the most part, armed militias should not be built in the open, even disguised as legal organizations who do not “provoke” the capitalist state, army and police. There might be local or national specific characteristics that makes this the correct path, but we would recommend the principles of clandestine work to apply in these matters. In general, revolutionaries should learn how to handle guns, but the question of organizing the masses militarily and arming them, is not mainly a question of forming militias or ‘sporting gun clubs’ and ‘self-defence organizations’. If such a movement truly is led by the communists, to do so in the open or semi-openly is in itself a provocation. We hold that communists should absolutely be open with our intent, with or program, strategy and goals, but our organization must be clandestine and secret. This is sometimes inverted by right opportunists, who hide their intent but present their organization for the enemy with no real measures of secrecy.
Again, Belisario does not quote our text, but claim we confuse Trotskys proposal with the Red Guards of the Russian revolution. The trotskyist ‘Transitional program’ we referred to, had nothing to do with the Russian revolution. But we uphold that the similarity with Sison’s paragraph is striking.
On Serve the People and the right opportunist line
“Kinera and his group Tjen Folkdet [sic] lack self-awareness and self-criticalness. Since 1998, which is more than twenty one years ago, they have not advanced from a pre-party formation and have not become a revolutionary party of the proletariat or a Communist Party to lead the proletariat and people in any kind of armed revolution. Their protracted talk about PPW has not yet proven to be any different from the illusion of the social democratic and other reformists about the protracted evolution of capitalism to socialism.“
Firstly, the text signed Kinera was not from a group. Kinera supports the Maoist movement of Norway, and thus the movement of Serve the People – Communist League (Tjen Folket), but the articles is no more statements from this group, than the texts of Sison or Belisario is statements of the Communist Party of the Philippines. The claim that Serve the People are not self-aware or self-critical is baseless. In a statement from 2018 ‘On the ongoing struggle against a rightist line in Serve the People’, the league wrote:
“The rightist line in the organisation has gradually appropriated the word “Maoism” , but it has never practiced Maoism. It has only in word, but not in action, dedicated itself in serving the people. On the contrary it has shown itself to be a manipulative opportunism and through and through revisionism. With this we declare that we have broken with this line and are in the process of correcting our own faults and developing our work in accordance with the interests of the proletariat and the proletariat’s own ideology: Maoism.”
When Serve the People was founded, it was as a Marxist-Leninist Mao Zedong Thought group. It did not from the beginning uphold the universality of people’s war. Maoism and people’s war was adopted in 2008 in the program of the league, but still it was not defined as in the synthesis of Maoism developed by the Communist Party of Peru and Chairman Gonzalo. In fact, most of the life span of Serve the People, the line of the leadership majority seem quite close the line of Belisario. Thus, the “criticism” from Belisario of Serve the People not advancing from pre-party formation is like lifting a stone and letting it go on his own feet. The main obstacle of further development of Serve the People, was exactly the line opposing Gonzalo thought and Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, principally Maoism.
Never have a Maoist from Norway claimed to be in the forefront of world revolution. It is true there is no protracted people’s war under Maoist leadership in Norway, or any other imperialist country. But again, where is the revolution due to protracted legal preparations? And what is the theory that has been applied by the most organizations for the longest time? Honesty in this area will make it very clear, that the adherence to people’s war as the sole path to liberation, is new in comparison.
The principal problem of the communist movement in the imperialist countries is the danger of right opportunism. Right opportunism in the form of reformism and social patriotism, and often disguised in the “imperialist exemptionalism” claiming the path to revolution must be bloody and violent in the third world, but one of protracted legalism in the imperialist countries, eventually and only in theory, ending in some kind of rapid revolution. In the question of the main contradiction in the line struggle, in the struggle between left and right, there is no question where to put Belisario and his promoters.
Armando Liwanag, Reaffirm Our Basic Principles and Carry the Revolution Forward
Central Committee of the Communist Party of Brazil (Red Faction), Combat Liquidationism and unite the International Communist Movement under Maoism and the People’s War
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Communist Party of Peru, Line of the Democratic Revolution
Communist Party of the Philippines, 1968 – Constitution of the Communist Party of the Philippines
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El Diario, Interview with Chairman Gonzalo
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El Maoista, Lenin and the Militarized Communist Party
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Mao, On Practice
Mao, On Protracted War
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People’s Daily and Red Flag, The Proletarian Revolution and Khrushchov’s Revisionism
People’s Daily, The Differences Between Comrade Togliatti and Us
Stalin, Concerning Questions of Leninism
Stalin, The Foundations of Leninism
Tjen Folket Media contributors, Reconstruct the Communist Party of Norway!
Tjen Folket Media contributor, When the Enemy Studies Mao
Tjen Folket Media, Ragnar V. Røed, Debate: Did Lenin and Stalin only write for Russia?
Tjen Folket Media, Ragnar V. Røed, Debate: A pull towards the right
Tjen Folket Media, Øystein Iversen, Debate: Answer to a Blog Post Against Gonzalo
Trotsky, The Transitional Program
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