Unitary Road Update

2020 began with reports from Maoist Road of a successful International preparatory meeting held in Italy in January before the lockdown.

Arguing for a method of unity-struggle-unity and against the spirit of faction and division, the PCm has striven through the Maoist Road sharing of information and campaigns and other avenues, for organizations “to arrive at the widest possible unity of the MLM movement”. [i]

There discussions were developed regarding the conditions, the need and possibility of holding a Conference grandly envisaged as a Unified International of Marxist Leninist Maoists of all countries.

The main organising sponsor the PCm Italy issued a message that spoke of

“The battle for the unity of the MLM communist movement, the struggle between the two lines within it, the definition of a common platform, the organized form with which to continue this work require, as we know, a prolonged work which demands preparatory meetings, new bilateral and multilateral meetings, as well as the exchange of documents, initiatives aimed at the masses, on the tortuous but luminous path of the realization of a Unified International Conference of the communist movement MLM that wins over the fragmentation, surpassing the effects of the collapse of the Rim and responds to the need to unify MLM on the basis of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, on the basis of a critical-self-critical assessment of the general experience of the RIM and other attempts to formation of an international organization.”

Previously the PCm had said “let’s work together for an International Conference of mlm parties and organisations in the world against revisionism, opportunism and pretty bourgeos leftism masked by ‘maoism’.” No names named this time.

Internet commentator, Harsh Thakor [ii] (coincidentally after interviewing exiled Philippine communist Jose Maria Sison) was not so circumspect arguing comrades must make a distinction between the positive practice of Communist Party of Peru (PCP) under Chairman Gonzalo and the most sectarian interpretation, naming Gonzaloists like RGA groups in America, some of which are now defunct , the German Committee Red Flag associated with Dem Volke Dienen website and those around Tjen Folket Media. He references Kenny Lake’s critical exploration of the debate around the universality of protracted people’s war (PPW) [iii], and the scathing criticism in Andy Belasario in PRISM blog, On the so-called University of Protracted People’s War and thethe dubious genius of a Gonzalo….his flip-flop from “Left” opportunism to Right opportunism, which has caused the people’s war to decline and nearly total defeat in Peru”. [iv]

Even before the enforced pause brought about by Covid 19, the conditions for convening the unified international conference have been absence with 2020 the year of alternative planning for separate developments on the unitary road in the Marxist-Leninist-Maoist tendencies.

Sison is involved in a big call for the new decade in what was set to be a year of competing “internationals”. Issued jointly at the end of December 2019, after months of discussions and exchanges between the International Coordination of Revolutionary Parties and Organizations (ICOR) and the International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS), two international anti-imperialist formations, the organisations entered the fray inviting others to join them in part of a new global alliance: The Anti-Imperialist Anti-Fascist United Front (AIAFUF), or simply United Front. [v]

What is envisaged is that the United Front shall be a movement of allied organizations without democratic centralism and a costly and expensive apparatus, so not a new Comintern-type arrangement. A challenging timetable was set with the promise that “The Front will be launched before the end of June 2020.”

The problems of establishing and agreeing a general orientation involved in uniting on a common platform was illustrated in an article ‘Maoism as in itself: against the idealism of the “mainly Maoist” current’ from the Canadian PRC-RCP – the Quebec Continuator group – that lays into the Communist Party of Brazil (Red Fraction), Struggle Sessions group, the Maoist Communist Party in France (despite its ambivalence), and domestically swipes at “intellectual revisionist Joshua Moufawad-Paul”. Factional fighting and name calling are milestones on the road to demarcation but can the direction of travel be to a unitary destination? The conclusion in the reassuringly-named ISKRA is hard to reject:

Currently, there is no, such a thing as an international Maoist movement per se. What exists are Maoist parties and organizations with more or less strong links between them, and in many cases without links at all. For a movement to exist, there must be unity, even if it is relative: common objectives, regular exchanges of experience, close collaboration and solid organizational links. If there is no unity at all, there is no movement. In history, the only time that an international Maoist movement actually existed was when the Internationalist Revolutionary Movement (RIM) was in place. Ironically, this experience, the partisans of the idealist tendency reject it under the pretext that the RIM defended a “disjointed and eclectic” conception of Maoism. The PCB (FR) declared last year that “in today’s world, unlike the founding or existence of the RIM, a revitalized international communist movement has flourished and developed”. This is a mind-blowing statement totally disconnected from the real world situation.” [vi]

Indeed dismissive of the whole engagement in the international project of communication, co-operation and co-ordination – they were never members of RIM – the Canadian group reflects a fundamentalist stance that

If we want Marxism to once again become a powerful weapon in the hands of the popular masses, we will have to put an end once and for all to literary leftism and petty-bourgeois pseudo-Maoism. That said, it is in the material world, and not in the world of ideas, that the idealist and postmodern currents will be swept away. It is through real practice, and not through an endless ideological struggle to reach the purest concepts, that the problem that these idealist currents represent will be resolved.

It is not likely they will be engaged in the debates and manoeuvres or overblown rhetoric on the road to establishing a durable structure for international relations with like-minded comrades. The advice from the Maoist era was clear: “the CPC, to its credit, refused a hegemonic role…and constantly drummed into overseas Maoists the need to think independently about their own conditions” [vii]


 

[i] https://maoistroad.blogspot.com/ January 2020

[ii] On the Theory of International Proletariat Military tactics of Mao and Chairman Gonzalo    http://ottoswarroom.blogspot.com/2020/02/on-theory-of-international-proletariat.html February 12, 2020

[iii] https://kites-journal.org/2019/12/11/on-infantile-internet-disorders-and-real-questions-of-revolutionary-strategy-a-response-to-the-debate-over-the-universality-of-protracted-peoples-war/

[iv] https://www.prismm.net/2019/09/02/universality-ppw/

[v] https://ilps.info/en/2019/12/30/call-for-building-the-international-anti-imperialist-and-antifascist-united-front/

[vi]   ISKRA   https://www.iskra-pcr-rcp.ca/2020/01/26/le-maoisme-tel-quen-lui-meme-contre-lidealisme-du-courant-principalement-maoiste/ January 26, 2020  

 [vii] Biel, Robert (2015) Eurocentrism and the Communist Movement. Montreal: Kersplebedeb p162.

 

The Gonzaloists are gathering

19jun_13Emergence of co-ordinated internet sites posting statements and news, reflective of a push to consolidate a MLM “Gonzaloist” trend, has seen momentum towards a United International Conference, which would make possible to reconstruct an international organization based on Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, after the collapse of the RIM. The unity based on the defence and application of maoism as the third and superior stage of the ideology of the revolutionary proletariat and its universal character (with an emphasis on people’s war) for the different revolutionary processes in the world. This would be something very different from the proposition of an anti-imperialist international front which is advocated by organizations such as ILPS and ICOR sponsored by the MLPD, and in opposition to new revisionism, such as avakianism, prachandaism and the Right Opportunist Line in Peru.

A leading element, in this largely Latin American based trend, the Communist Party of Brazil (Red Faction) has been critical of what its described as the “rightist line that works for the split of the ICM” and “revisionist line that intends to undermine the People´s Wars” coming out from the International League of Peoples’ Struggle led by veteran communist Jose Maria Sison. Warning that so called “peace agreements” “demonstrated how an efficient liquidating road of revolutionary movements by the imperialists and their revisionist lackeys, with the example in the case of Nepal”.

The criticism brought a strong rebuke from Dan Borjal, Political Consultant of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines, for “the remarkable ignorance of Dem Volke Dienen about concrete Philippine conditions and about the Philippine revolutionary movement, and its audacity in exhibiting its idealist, ahistorical and un-Marxist way of thinking.”

More recently there was a flurry of condemnation, carried on the website Dem Volke Dienen – Serve the People, of the aggression that the Committee Red Flag suffered during the 2018 May 1st demonstration in Berlin from elements of the Jugendwiderstand [“Youth Resistance”] .Rather than explain it off as a ‘turf battle’, CRF supporters raised suggestions that it was stirred up by prompting from Utrecht.

The May 2016 meeting of marxist-leninist-maoist Parties and Organizations of Latin America set out the contours of the trend in three joint declarations, for debate and as contributions for the development of the two lines struggle in the International Communist Movement to draw the demarcation line: “Thesis on the international situation and the tasks of the International Communist Movement”, “Celebrate the 50 years of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution with People’s War until Communism” and “Resolution of Class Solidarity with the Communist Party of India (maoist) and the People’s War”.

“In these documents we advanced on the questions of utmost importance for the Proletarian World Revolution, such as the understanding of Maoism as the new, third and superior stage of the development of Marxism, the defense of the necessity of the concentric construction of the three fundamental instruments of revolution, of the militarization of the Communist Parties, the understanding of great leadership and guiding thought of each party and the revolution it struggles and leads – among other contributions of universal validity of Gonzalo Thought.”

Beside individual organisations’ websites and publications, the news site https://www.newepoch.media/ seems the main blog channel for international solidarity in the emergent trend.

Not all MLM “Gonzaloists” are on board for a United International Conference e.g. the grouping around the online magazine Communism or Red Sun magazine of the Peru People’s Movement.

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This year’s campaign on the bicentenary of Karl Marx’s birthday illustrates the activities and political positions taken by the organisations involved:

Communist Party of Brazil (Red Faction)
Peoples Movement Peru (Reorganisation Committee)
Communist Party of Ecuador – Red Sun
Red Faction of the Communist Party of Chile
Maoist Organization for the Reconstitution of the Communist Party of Colombia
Revolutionary Nucleus for the reconstitution of the Communist Party of Mexico
Committee Red Flag – Germany
Committees for the Foundation of the (Maoist) Communist Party – Austria

<200th anniversary celebration>