jueves, 31 de agosto de 2017

Comunicado del KKE(m-l) por el 100 aniversario de la Revolución de Octubre

 Partido Comunista de Grecia (marxista-leninista)

This was the first of the two presentations in an open event for the 100 years of the October Revolution that took place in Athens in May of 2017. By P. Chountis member of the Central Committee of CPG(m-l).  
It took a few decades to realize the picturesque finding in the Communist Manifesto in 1848, that "A spectre is haunting Europe—the spectre of communism".
We could say that the massive presence of the working class in historical development starts in the 1830s and 1840s. The labour struggles of Lyon and the movement of Chartists are accompanied by the first socialist-communist approaches. The revolution in Paris in 1848 is the first dynamic presence of the proletariat and leads to the proletarian uprising in late June. The uprising is repressed and thousands are executed and displaced in labour camps in Algeria, but it affects a wave of uprisings across Europe. Marx describes the 1848 uprising in Paris as the "first major battle between the two classes in which the modern society is divided".
The next wave comes with the shocking events in Paris in 1870-71 that lead to the first proletarian-revolutionary power, the Commune that lasts from late March to late May. During these two months, the Commune replaces the regular army by the militia, gives away all rents since October 1870, allows the election of foreign nationals in the Commune, imposes a ceiling on Communist officials, votes for the division of Church and State, the abolition of state subsidies for religious purposes, the removal of religious symbols from schools, the destruction of the guillotine, the demolition of the chauvinistic and warmonger Column of Victory, the creation of collaborative cooperatives for the operation of factories, the abolition of night shift for baker workers, the closing of the pawnshops and more.
In late May the Commune is crushed by the army, in an agreement between the French bourgeoisie and the German invaders. A mass massacre follows. Engels says that "such a massacre has not happened since the civil wars that prepared the fall of the Roman Empire". And adds that in the uprising of 1848 "the bourgeoisie showed the terrible toughness that its vengeance can reach, if the proletariat dares to stand as a separate class with its own claims and interests". To conclude with the observation that "yet, 1848 was like a game compared to the rage of the bourgeoisie in 1871".

Τhe labour struggles are handed over to the US working class. Nine years after the rail strikes in 1877, on May 1st 1886, US unions go on strike demanding eight-hour working day. While thousands of workers do achieve the eight-hour working day, mass strikes are facing brutal police repression that leads to violent deaths, arrests and death sentences for four workers in a parody-trial.
In Russia, the working class increases and rapidly awakens. The first strikes of 1885 are followed by the strikes of 1896 in Petrograd and the huge strike and rally in 1902 in Rostov. Lenin states that "For the first time, the proletariat acts as a class in confrontation to all other classes and the Tsarist government". The economic crisis is sharpening, the situation for the working class and the poor peasants is miserable and the struggles reach a higher level. The great workers' peaceful demonstration in Petrograd, called "Bloody Sunday", on January 9th 1905, is bloodstained with a thousand dead and thousands injured. The creation of the Soviets follows, mass labour strikes and demonstrations, uprisings of poor farmers accompanied by expropriations. The uprising staggers in Moscow with a general political strike and barricades and is stifled by the army at the end of the year. Bourgeois historians raise the number of executed to 15,000, while several tens of thousands are injured and imprisoned. In the 1905 revolution, the Bolsheviks have a significant impact.
In consideration, Lenin states: "All classes are presented openly. All views on the program and the tactics are controlled by the action of the masses. The strike struggle is of unprecedented width and sharpness. The economic strike is transformed into political and the political strike into an uprising [...] Within the spontaneous development of the struggle raises the Soviet form of organization of the society [...] all these amazingly wealthy in content. Each month of this period equals, from the point of view of learning the bases of political science -by the masses, the leaders, the classes and the parties- to a year of ‘peaceful’ ‘constitutional’ development. Without the ‘general test’ of 1905, it would be impossible for the October 1917 Revolution to win".
Several profound analyses already exist in Europe in the 1890s that talk about the end of Marxism. In 1910, new bourgeois but also so-called revolutionary "analyses" –by Norman Angell, Kautsky, Adler- are talking about the end of wars and the era of ultra-imperialism, that is, the cooperation of the imperialists. Perhaps these views are the reason that the Bolsheviks try and manage to pass in the decision of the conference of the International in Basel in 1912 that "it cannot be justified under any pretext that war is for the people's interest", and the call to "oppose the proletarian world of peace and solidarity of the peoples to the capitalist world of exploitation and mass murder".
But life does not obey to the "analysts". In 1914 the First World War begins.
The process of evolution of the class struggles is closely linked to the process of the formation of the working class at a political, ideological and organizational level. The Manifesto is written in the same year as the rebellion of 1848. Immediately after the Commune, Marx writes ”The Civil War in France”, a text that, along with the introduction by Engels, summarizes in a shocking way not only what had happened, but also the conclusions produced. From 1867 to 1894 the three volumes of the "Capital" are published and in 1902, Lenin’s "What Is to Be Done?” In the fire of the imperialist war, life itself leads to the sharpening of the Bolshevik confrontation against the opportunists, and "The Collapse of the Second International" and "Imperialism, The Highest Stage of Capitalism" are published. Only a few days before the October Revolution "The State and Revolution" is written. All these are not theories or abstract conversations of intellectuals, but specific answers to questions that life puts at the given time. They match the level of class struggle development.
A similar course is followed in the organizational level. The First International is formed in 1864, when the working class had already presented itself, but is bisected under the weight of the defeat of the Commune, which proves the Marxist view correct against the anarchist. The Second International is founded in 1889, under the pressure of Engels, but essentially due to the formation of communist organizations and parties and the need for international coordination. The Second International is a coexistence of revolutionary and reformist-opportunist currents and, in turn, it collapses in the First World War. The Third International is created in 1919, in the beginning of the struggle to stabilize the revolution.
The organizational changes in the political foundations in Russia also follow a similar course. In 1903 the Bolsheviks and Mensheviks are separated.
The outbreak of the First World War in 1914 finds the movement with serious problems. The vast majority of the Comintern leadership (90% according to Lenin) is transposed to the right, sides with the imperialist bourgeoisie and votes in favour of military spending. The Second International has collapsed.
Poverty, the pain of war and, above all, the Bolsheviks' correct line and determination -despite their relatively few powers- are building up revolutionary conditions. In February 1917 a bourgeois-democratic revolution overthrows the Tsar. The government that takes over continues the war and creates binary power conditions with the Soviets. Lenin sends a "line" telegram saying: "Full mistrust in the government and Kerensky, armament of the proletariat, immediate Duma elections in Petrograd, no approach to other parties".
In April, Lenin returns from his exile in Zurich and compiles "The April Theses": anti-war propaganda - peace plan - no parliamentary democracy – the entire state power to the Soviets - abolition of army, police, and bureaucracy – confiscation of landed estate (workers-peasants alliance) - immediate union of all banks into a single national bank - confrontation with the social-chauvinists and the "centrists".
In July, major demonstrations in Petrograd lead to generalized repression and persecution of Bolsheviks (Lenin resorts to Finland) and are accompanied by a government takeover by social revolutionary Kerensky. A congress follows to prepare for the armed uprising while the internal confrontation in the Bolshevik party is strengthened. In late August a coup attempted by General Kornilov is repulsed by the Bolsheviks. The correlations are changing in the Soviets in favour of the Bolsheviks who have huge support from workers, soldiers and peasants, as they show that they are the only ones on the part of the people who know what they want.
However, things are not so clear, even between them. Since early September Lenin dramatically presses for an immediate armed takeover of power. Even the Bolshevik party seems to be frightened in front of the historic task it undertakes. But Lenin and his staff are determined. They have learned the lessons from the Commune and know that if the opportunity of a confused and split enemy is lost, the bourgeoisie will slaughter the proletariat and peasantry without a second thought.
Finally, on October 10th, the decision to immediately prepare for an armed uprising is taken. Kamenev and Zinoviev draft an open letter of disagreement! With his last dramatic address in the Central Committee, Lenin on October 24th invites the party to seize power. On the night of October 25th (November 7th) the assault on the Winter Palace and the arrest of the Provisional Government take place.
The historic announcement of the Soviet Revolutionary-Military Committee of the Petersburg Soviets of Workers and Military Members, dated October 25th - 10 am, states that "state power has been taken over by the Commission, which is the head of the proletariat and Petrograd guard" and that "the cause for which the people were struggling is assured... Long live the revolution of the workers, the soldiers and the peasants!"
Kornilov and Kerensky escape. Until December, power passes into the hands of the Soviets. The building of the proletarian socialist state begins.
Russia's hard peace treaty with Germany followed, the renaming of the party to Russian Communist Party (Bolsheviks) and the quest of reactionaries with imperialist military attack by 14 countries to crush the revolution. Kornilov’s statement that the revolution must be crashed "even if we have to burn half the country and kill 3/4 of all Russians", justifies the Bolsheviks' determination to seize power.
In 1918 and 1919 a rebellion takes place in Austria and revolutions in Germany and Hungary, which are squashed. In Germany, the Social Democrats undertake the violent repression of the revolution, and Noske declares "Someone must play the role of a bloodhound"! The leaders of the Spartacists (who, despite seeing the revolution premature, strongly support it) Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht are murdered.
While the Bolsheviks' hope for a chain of victorious proletarian revolutions is disproved in a number of countries, the long war (imperialist and civil for a total of eight years) creates huge disasters in production and fatigue in the people. Those problems lead to the NEP, which, for Lenin, constitutes a necessary retreat towards capitalist measures to save the revolution.
We will continue with a simple reference to the following years. In 1921 the Kronstadt rebellion is repressed and in 1924 Lenin dies and is succeeded by Stalin. In the years 1924-1927 the struggle inside the party is intensified and alliances turn to confrontations without principles by Trotsky, Kamenev, Zinoviev and Bukharin.
In 1927 Trotsky and Zinoviev are expelled. The “direction to eradicate the capitalist elements from the peoples’ economy” is decided.
Between 1928 and 1932 Stalin has prevailed in the party. Politics shift towards collectivization, striking kulaks and NEPmen and essential abandonment of the NEP. There is mass sabotage in production by the kulaks, indecisiveness by the middle-class peasants and the political decision to support the proletariat and the poor peasants. The pressure for fast industrialization increases (“cover the one hundred year gap from the developed capitalist countries within ten years”). In those four years enormous results but also unpleasant side effects are produced. Persecutions of those opposed are not negligible and also include parts of the people. The significant role of the apparatus in those persecutions is criticized by Stalin.

Between 1933 and 1935 economic development grows and a democratic opening takes place. Opposition members are included in the Committee for the new Constitution. Bukharin, well-known by his “get rich!” slogan, his support to continue NEP and his opposition against collectivization, is the key rapporteur on the abolition of class struggle as a moving force in soviet society. This thesis is not rejected by Stalin, who triumphs in the 17th Party Congress. In 1934, Stalin's close associate Kirov is assassinated, but that doesn't slow down the democratic opening.
In the next two years the conspiracies by a number of leading officials lead to trials, purges and executions. In contrast to the 1928-1932 period, the persecutions of 1936-1938 concern party and state elite officials. The opposition is already politically defeated and all these events happen publicly, with the masses watching from a distance. There is a general demand to stop the endless discussions and disputes which decrease the effectiveness of the soviet worker’s state. However, the leading part is not with the class struggle but with the apparatus and that meant to affect future developments.
Meanwhile, the war is near. The Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact gives time to the Soviets to prepare. It is an important tactical movement which actually clarifies the opposing sides in the coming war and annihilates the pro-Nazi tendencies of the big imperialist states.
In 1941 the Nazis invade the Soviet Union. After the initial retreat of the Red Army, the counteroffensive begins in the end of 1942 and ends on April 30th 1945, when the Red Army enters Berlin. Germany’s surrender is completed on May 8th and on May 9th the victory march takes place in the Red Square.
Between 1945 and 1953 the destroyed Soviet Union, which suffered 30 million dead, is rapidly reconstructed. New socialist countries emerge from the war and the Cold War begins. The status of the USSR, the Red Army and Stalin (who becomes the red flag for the imperialists and the bourgeoisie) is increased as never before. The workers' movement rises throughout the world. The Chinese revolution is victorious.
However, an important side-effect is the increase of the status of the intelligentsia which gradually realizes its own interests. In the beginning of 1950 Stalin writes the booklet “Economic Problems of Socialism in the USSR”, in which the new issues that have arisen become obvious. Maybe Stalin did not see the whole picture and essentially Yaroshenko is criticized for “overpraising the part of the productive forces, while highly underestimating the part of the relations of production”.
However, as it turned out, things are already underway. After Stalin’s death, this path is formalized with the political victory of the new bourgeoisie in the 20th Party Congress. What followed is well-known. Coups in the international communist movement, peaceful coexistence with imperialism, upgrade of the formation of new bourgeoisie, subordination of the communist parties to the local bourgeoisie.
The revolution was defeated and the baton was taken over by China, with the attempt to answer positively to the negative sides of the first attempt for socialism, especially through the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.
Let’s now come to some questions and give our own answers.
Coup d'état or “rape of history”?
First of all let's talk about the reactionary propaganda. The exploitation and oppression apologists howl that the October Revolution was nothing more than a coup d'état from the conspirator Lenin and his comrades. Others describe it as half a revolution - half a coup d'état. So, on one side there is the state, with its apparatus and its army. On the other side there are the damned of Russia, the proletariat, the poor peasants and the soldiers who come from these classes. They who had the apparatus in their hands, they who served the parasitic interests of a handful of oppressors, the only ones who had the opportunity and interest to pull a coup d'état through, are blaming the oppressed, those who had nothing more than their own organizations for a coup d'état! What a reversal of reality and blatant insult to common sense! The insult becomes bigger considering that the real coup d'état was the one organized by Kornilov and repulsed by the Bolsheviks. The enormous support that the Bolsheviks had by the soldiers essentially blocked it. The organizers of the coup were the ones that, immediately after the victory of the revolution, upgraded the coup to an invasion, with the support of 14 countries! They and their class scream about coup d'état!
Some say that the Bolsheviks took advantage of the deregulation and dissipation of the state apparatus. Of course they did and they did well! But how did this deregulation occur after all? Weren't the Bolsheviks the ones that even before the war had begun to deconstruct the allegedly “fair” side, the ones who demanded immediate end of the war, the ones who propagandized the slogan for peace and jobs, the ones who tried to organize every aspect of the struggle under the fiercest terrorism? Weren’t the Russian proletariat and the poor peasants in Russia the ones that carried on and upgraded their struggle for thirty years with strikes and uprisings and thousands of dead from the fierce Tsarist pólice?
To the leaders of the capitalist – imperialist world, the damned do not have the right to even consider to claim the world. When they consider it they are “dangerous” and “adventurers”, when they realize it they are “coup makers”, “killers”, “barbarians”, “antidemocrats”…
There is a more... delicate “criticism”. Some say that the October Revolution might not have been a coup, but it surely was an untimely and historically premature move, a “rape” of history. The upper limit of the revolution should be, according to them, “the bourgeois-democratic revolution of February which would lead Russia from underdevelopment to the path of capitalist growth”.
That was then the opinion of the Mensheviks but affected leading members of the Bolsheviks as well. Both the general feeling that the revolution will first take place in developed countries and the fear in front of the huge duties opening ahead played their role in this theorization of the “hold-back”. Maybe this was an early appearance of the theory of the productive forces.
But, since history has already decided, it is difficult to find any elements of seriousness in those that insist on this approach. The October Revolution was not one of those historical facts that happened after plots and assassinations in-between the upper cliques. It came from beneath, it was an authentic outcome of the movement of the masses. As such, it cannot be returned to its makers, the masses, because some petit-bourgeoisie minds do not like it or because it doesn't comply with their “high-class” specifications.

As for the underdevelopment of Russia we have two aspects to highlight:
First, at the time when the entire developed capitalist world was shaken by the economic crisis of 1929 -which found its way out in World War 2 ten years later- socialist Russia walked the opposite way to realize an impressive growth, in spite of the encirclement and isolation.
Second, we would like to point out that all those who consider the seize of political power by the proletariat and the poor peasants in Russia of 1917 premature, were in the exact same way fanatically against any revolutionary perspective in the rotten imperialistic capitals throughout the twentieth century.
Lenin prophetically said in 1902: “The fulfilment of the duty to knock down the most powerful stronghold of the European and Asian reaction would make the Russian proletariat the vanguard of the international revolutionary proletariat. We have the right to believe that we will have this honorary title, if we manage to inspire the same limitless determination and strength of will. Or, to use again the words of Lenin in 1917 “to help the undecided you must not be undecided yourself”.
The believers of the “coup” theory and the believers of the “rape of history” theory share the same hatred against the peoples and the working class, agree that capitalism is the only way, complete each other in the perception that history is made from the bourgeoisie and their relations and not by the masses and class struggle.
Achievements of October Revolution and the USSR:
Let's see what this coup, this ...seduction of history achieved:
- Withdrew Russia from the imperialist WW1.
- Confiscated the big feudal power and delivered it to the serfs.
- Expropriated the big industries and made them public property.
- Established 8 and 7 hours of working day and was about to make it 6 and 5.
- Established free healthcare and free education, filled the schools and the universities.
- Banned child labor.
- Established women’s rights, not only institutionally but in practice.
- Guaranteed a complete welfare system for the helpless.
- Put the masses in charge in multiple levels. From the Soviets which decided after assemblies and disputes to the workers’ initiatives even on the production norms (such as the Stakhanovite movement).
- Created terror to the bourgeoisie all over the world and forced them to apply elements of social welfare and rights.
- Productive forces increased sky-high in a delayed country.
- Opened the ideological front with all the reactionary views and metaphysical superstitions.
- Pointed out people’s right in self-determination and fought against chauvinism and nationalism.
- Clarified in practice just and unjust wars.
- Won WW2 essentially alone.
- Crashed fascism and Nazism.
- Above all: Upgraded the uprisings of the oppressed throughout history in a revolution that took power and kept it. As Stalin said 10 years from October: “The old 'theory' that the oppressed cannot do without the oppressors..., the theory that assumed the characteristics of superstition, is today one of the most serious obstacles in the way of revolutionizing the proletariat of the capitalist countries. One of the greatest results of the October Revolution is the fact that managed a mortal blow at this fake 'theory'”.
All these happened in conditions of encirclement, wars, isolation and sabotage. The heroism that the Soviet peoples showed, with the proletariat in the front line and the poor farmers as allies, was based on the fact that they were defending their own society and they knew it. Because the relations of production had been revolutionized and the working class had the necessary level of awareness.
When today the dominant capitalism, free from “inconveniences” from the working class and the peoples, free from the rival awe heads to the working day of 10 or 15 hours, the destroyed USSR was discussing a working day of 6 hours and 5 hours for heavy occupations. What else is there to say?
Let's move to some notes or maybe conclusions that consist the elements of our view and rather our character:
First note: There is no such process as copying history. History isn't repeated the same way but in another turn of the spiral. The Bolsheviks made constant adjustments based on the changing circumstances. Our comrade Vassilis Gemistos used to say that: “Lenin didn't know in January the... April Theses”. In April Lenin said “The slogan 'Down with the Provisional Government' isn't right today because without the constant (meaning conscious and organized) peoples’ majority by the side of the revolutionary proletariat, such a slogan is either an empty phrase or objectively leads to efforts of adventurist characteristics” (Decision of Central Committee of RSDLP(b), April 22th 1917). But in October not only he supported the slogan “Down with the government” but actually led the party to its implementation.
Second: The evaluation of history needs to be done carefully because it involves dangers.
One danger is the “ifs”. “If this had happened, if that hadn't happened etc”. However, history cannot be corrected. It is written in a way that is determined by a given accumulation of objective and subjective terms. Its evaluation is done in order to draw conclusions for the future and those conclusions will in turn be included in a new accumulation of objective and subjective terms.
Another danger is after a negative turn, after a defeat, to be confused on the weaknesses, the mistakes and the critical moments that defined the outcome:
- To say that “it was the fault of the National Liberation Front that the Greek movement was defeated” even though the NLF produced the Democratic Army of Greece and then decades of struggles.
- To say that “it was the politics of People's Fronts to blame for the victory of revisionism, even though it served the need of the antifascist struggle and inspired revolutions such as the Chinese and the Vietnamese.
- To say that “it was the coalition of workers and peasants to blame” for the later ending of the USSR, even though it was the critical factor for the victory and the stabilization of the revolution.
- To say that “it was the NEP or the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk to blame”, even though these were the moves that prevented the collapse of the revolution at its beginning.
- Some more hypocrites or others more blunt say that for everything “Stalin’s rise to power was to blame”, others that “the revolution was a mistake from the beginning, because Russia was not a developed capitalist country” and the pure, raw capitalist-imperialist system claims that “things went wrong since the French Revolution, when the barefoot appeared for the first time in the foreground of history”!
Third: There are no “clear” revolutions that “adjust” to ready-made decisions of central committees; history cannot be programmed.
Marx and Engels stubbornly insisted on their denial to specifically describe elements of the dictatorship of the proletariat, because they knew that the waters were uncharted and that titanic work would be needed, with unknown exact social-economic conditions. But also, what was the October Revolution? From the bourgeois revolution of February we reached the proletarian revolution of October, then the NEP and then the collectivization. Not a “clear” situation, indeed! But very revolutionary! The only “clear” revolutions are those not happening at all and the only “clear” revolutionaries are the ones that plan to stand against the revolution.
It is true that tactics, retreats and maneuvers, (like every ACTION in real life) may produce deviations, permanent misconceptions, stratums with special interests, new dangers and side-effects. The only way to answer them is the formation of the proletariat and its party, so that they are able to understand the difference between a conscious decision and a mandatory retreat and try as soon as possible to return to their original goals.
On the 2nd Conference of the Committees of Political Enlightenment in October of 1921, on the NEP issue Lenin stated “We believed that… we would be able to regulate production and distribution with a simple communist order… since the head-on attack didn’t work we will pass to the maneuver tactics to the method of siege and rabbit-hole”. What else does this mean except forced retreat? What else does this prove except full awareness of that retreat but, in parallel, persistence to the original purpose?
Fourth: The issue of political power has been and IS EVEN MORE TODAY THE ISSUE OF UTMOST IMPORTANCE due to the experience and maturity gained by the bourgeois states over the years.
The peoples are blazing revolutionary trails not because they choose to do so, but because the enemy doesn't leave them any other option. The contradiction between reform and revolution permeates the entire history of the class struggles. The "misfortune" of the reformists is that their role and existence presupposes a strong revolutionary movement. They fiercely attack it, and, by doing so, they are sawing off the branch they are sitting on. We would like to quote a few things that have been written in relation to this issue:
- State:
The Communist Manifesto - Marx, Engels (Preface): "One thing especially was proved by the Commune, that the working class cannot simply lay hold of the ready-made state machinery, and wield it for its own purposes".
The State and Revolution - Lenin (August 1917, in the fire of the rebellion): "This course of events compels the revolution ‘to concentrate all its forces of destruction’ against the state power, and to set itself the aim, not of improving the state machine, but of smashing and destroying it."
On the other hand:
Kautsky: "The proletarian victory over a hostile government can never, under no circumstances lead to the destruction of the state power; it can lead only to a certain shifting of the balance of forces within the state power. And the aim of our political struggle remains, as in the past, the conquest of state power by winning a majority in parliament and by raising parliament to the ranks of master of the government."
- "Radical" delusions of management, self-government, participation, and political power:
The 18th Brumaire - Marx (1852): "With this defeat the proletariat passes into the background of the revolutionary stage… In part it throws itself into doctrinaire experiments, exchange banks and workers’ associations, hence into a movement in which it renounces the revolutionizing of the old world by means of the latter’s own great, combined resources, and seeks, rather, to achieve its salvation behind society’s back, in private fashion, within its limited conditions of existence, and hence necessarily suffers shipwreck."
Critique of the Gotha Programme – Marx (1875): "[in his criticism of the Programme's point for establishment of producers' co-operative societies with state aid under democratic control, from which the socialist organization will arise - Ed.]: In place of the existing class struggle appears a newspaper scribbler's phrase: ‘the social question’, to the ‘solution’ of which one ‘paves the way’. Instead of arising from the revolutionary process of transformation of society, the ‘socialist organization of the total labor’ ‘arises’ from the ‘state aid’ that the state gives to the producers' co-operative societies…" And further on: "That a heap of somewhat muddled and purely democratic demands should figure in the programme, some of them being of a purely fashionable nature — for instance ‘legislation by the people’ such as exists in Switzerland and does more harm than good, if it can be said to do anything at all.".
Will the Bolsheviks Maintain Power? - Lenin (September 1917): "We put the revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat, as well as political power in general in the forefront... When we say: ‘workers' control’, always juxtaposing this slogan to the dictatorship of the proletariat, always putting it immediately after the latter, we thereby explain what kind of state we mean... The Kornilovite Cadets know perfectly well that the participation of the workers into state control offers the bourgeoisie the best way of fooling the workers, the most subtle way of politically bribing..."
We didn't cite the above passages merely to refer to the "Scriptures". But because we would like to demonstrate that, unfortunately, the fundamental issues, which are still preoccupying the movement today, as well as opportunistic insights that are being presented as modern conceptions, have in fact reappeared over and over again. They have troubled and have been answered not only by the great revolutionaries but by the class struggle itself. We consider the issue of political power, state, and revolution to be, let us say, one of the "closed" issues, which, in fact, apply today even more than they did when answered one or one and a half century ago.
Fifth: The issue of power either does arise or not. It cannot partly arise.
It only arises when it is ready to arise. For this, it is not enough for "the lower classes not to want, and the upper classes not to be able" but it is also required that these are "accompanied by a subjective change, namely, the ability of the revolutionary class to take revolutionary mass action, strong enough to break (or dislocate) the old government, which never, not even in a period of crisis, ‘falls’, if it is not toppled over." (The Collapse of the Second International - Lenin, June 1915).
Sixth: The issue of alliances is crucial.
It requires the class analysis of the society, observation of the class mobility tendencies and construction of tactics accordingly. It is apparent through the entire experience of the movement, as it has been recorded in its various documents.
  • In "The Civil War in France" (Marx, 1871) it is stated that: "The Commune was perfectly right in telling the peasants that its victory was their only hope’".
  • In "Critique of the Gotha Programme" (on the statement that "relative to which" (the working class) "all other classes are only one reactionary mass."), Marx notes wryly: "Has one proclaimed to the artisan, small manufacturers, etc., and peasants during the last elections: Relative to us, you, together with the bourgeoisie and feudal lords, form one reactionary mass?"
  • In "Letters on Tactics" (by Lenin, April 1917) "There is a petty bourgeoisie, it cannot be ignored… we should not leap over the petty bourgeoisie… (of which) the poorer is with the working class."
  • In "The Trade Unions, The Present Situation, And Trotsky’s Mistakes" (1920): "Comrade Trotsky speaks of a ‘workers’ state’. For one thing, ours is not actually a workers’ state but a workers’ and peasants’ state. And a lot depends on that..."
  • In the general political line of the alliance of workers and peasants, which has literally established and preserved the revolution in its difficult moments.
There is also a sly, opportunistic way to bypass the issue of alliances, the issue of support that the proletariat might require and over which it certainly must establish leadership. It is to label everybody as "working class", from an industrial worker to an accountant and a university professor, "solving" both difficult problems, alliances and leadership with a scam, a magic trick. In our opinion this... generalized “proletaralization” is not a simple mistake, but serves much more devious purposes.
Seventh: From the early 19th century, when the working class first participated in class struggles, from the massacre of the proletariat in 1848 in Paris, to the defeat by the new bourgeois elements in the Soviet Union and China, until today, the same issue emerges over and over again: Is it possible for the working class to be autonomous (as a leading force of an alliance of other oppressed sections of the society) or it (together with its allies) is doomed to constitute a crutch for one or another bourgeois alternative. Obviously, we support the former. This issue is related to the degree of formation of the working class as a "class-for-itself". It has been proven that Lenin and the Bolsheviks were correct when they persisted in the fierce debate with all the opportunistic trends, most of all with the Mensheviks and the social democrats, but also with the leftist variations and the anarchists. And since we are discussing debates, we should remember that history is merciless; ALL these exotic names, the receivers of the merciless attacks of the great revolutionaries are completely unknown today; history hasn't written anything about them. Even the prominent Kautsky would have been entirely unbeknown had Lenin not reproached him with his habitual fury.
Eighth: No serious and ambitious effort can be made without the formation of the working class to the level of a party-organization.
Lenin fiercely fought against dissolutionism and liquidationism, defended the party operation under the most brutal conditions of illegality; he understood that the combination of theory - political analysis - line for the masses - class struggle - correction could be implemented by the working class only through its party. At the same time he was not getting confused by whatever conditions of legality existed in other European countries besides Russia, and did not give in to legalism.
The crucial and determinant factor regarding ALL the above is the formation of the working class as a "class-for-itself". This is the only way to proceed with ambitious tactics and short and long-term alliances (in consciousness of their ways and targets). Only this formation may lead to the leadership of the proletariat over all the oppressed sections of the society, since it will be able to declare: "Our victory is your hope!" These steps cannot be made by following a prescription drawn by the past experience, but only in the real field of class struggle, at the fronts that are shaped by real life, which today is defined by the barbarity of the capitalist-imperialist system. Where "one step of real movement is more important than a dozen programmes". Through resistance to the new wars that this system is waging and to the greater ones that it is preparing; through resistance to the shattering of the workers' and peoples' rights; through claiming the basic rights in life; through defiance of ALL variations of opportunism, submission, compromise, and integration into the system; through strengthening the confrontation with it. It is through these fields that the workers' and peoples' revolutionary communist movement and the new communist parties will be formed. These formations will be able to explain even more successfully the defeat of the previous revolutionary wave, through spreading out a new one. It will defend in the most effective and authentic way the glorious October Revolution!
We are going through a historical period in which the so called political realism focuses on the idea that "revolutionary politics don't hold up, have no appeal".
A period in which revolutionary politics and its outlook to the future is being continuously postponed and revolutionary voluntarism has been exorcised from thought and practice.
A phase of the movement in which the left pessimism, with its eyes fixed on the parliamentary percentages, produces disappointment.
It is now that the workers' communist strategy, as viable politics in today's battles, is needed and must be rebuilt. At the moment it dwells in ideological illegality, labeled as "sectarianism" or “leftism”…
It is to this effort to restore the revolutionary scope in today's reality that we want to contribute with our event today, but mostly with our political intervention, as it will provide feedback to our theory of the new period of the communist movement that we are already going through.


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