186. The November 8th Publishing House | v 2.0

Established in Canada in 2021, this site provides access to English-language pdfs of anti-revisionist literature and the name should sound familiar. The original “8 Nëntori” Publishing House, literally meaning “8 November” in Albanian, honours the founding of the Party of Labour of Albania on November 8th, 1941. It published Enver Hoxha’s Selected Works, his Reflections, his many theoretical works, his memoirs, historical notes, and more.

The new incarnation, while republishing material from the Hoxha’s canon, aims “to promote discussion among Marxist-Leninists, even reprinting controversial figures and literature. In this work, we should note that reprinting does not mean we endorse the content — nor does it necessarily represent our views — it only means that we acknowledge that there may be some value in studying it.” Amongst its existing list are titles from the usual suspects, Lenin, Stalin, Dimitrov, Zhdanov, Ramiz Alia , Nexhmije Hoxha,  and Wang Ming and Kim Il Sung. Being based near Ottawa (formerly at Toronto), there are some specifically Canadian communist literature reprinted.

Amongst its publications is a new collection Congress of Betrayal – The November 8th Publishing House (wordpress.com) partially of previous untranslated comments from Enver’s Diary and other more familiar material. This selection covers the decade 1955-1966, covering such events as the 20th Congress and the denunciation of Stalin, including his epochal 1960 Moscow Meeting speech, the Hungarian counter-revolution and its source, the “anti-party” plot of Molotov et al., to the break of diplomatic relations by the Soviets in 1961, and the removal of Khrushchev and the 23rd Brezhnev Congress in 1964-66.

seek truth to serve the people

What it illustrates is the argumentation forcibly and persistently offered in the through-going contradictions with the revisionist developments under Khrushchev. Far from being a pawn in the Sino-Soviet split, as if Albania was a side show in the anti-revisionist struggle, it highlights the contribution made sincerely and independently in that anti-revisionist struggle. Having read Albania Challenges Khrushchev Revisionism (New York 1976) or The Party of Labor of Albania in Battle with Modern Revisionism (Tirana 1972) you will know what to expect, and the speech delivered at the meeting of 81 Communist and Workers’ parties in Moscow (November 16, 1960) is included in the collection. That self-reverential sense that “we have done our sacred duty to Marxism-Leninism” still pervades the selection but then again, reality proved the life-and-death class struggle they were engaged in. The disruption of the international movement and eventual disintegration did see the attempted formation and reorganisation of anti-revisionist Marxist-Leninist forces. Something the Albanian party did pay close attention too.

Any evaluation of the struggle experienced by the Party of Labour of Albania led by Enver Hoxha should acknowledge it opened up the gates for the formation of the new Marxist-Leninist parties and the end of the old “fossilized and demobilized” Communist parties in the early stages of that struggle. The subsequent stance raises other questions which seems to have influenced some of the selected inclusions in the collection, before Hoxhaism was clearly delineated from Maoism,to reinforce the (contested) position that the PLA were the only forces to assess every deviationist move of the USSR correctly from the very beginning.

Congress of Betrayal | CONTENTS

KHRUSHCHEV ANNULS THE INFORMBUREAU DECISION (May 23, 1955)

WE ARE ALONE AGAINST TITO (May 25, 1955)

DITYRAMBS FROM TITO TO KHRUSHCHEV (February 18, 1956)

ON KHRUSHCHEV’S SECRET SPEECH (February 26, 1956)

THE AMERICAN IMPERIALISTS CAN NEVER CHANGE THEIR ESSENCE (March 8, 1956)

THE “ITALIAN WAY TOWARDS SOCIALISM” (March 18, 1956)

THE TRAITORS REHABILIATED UNDER THE PRETEXT OF THE “CULT OF THE INDIVIDUAL” (March 30, 1956)

A REVISIONIST PLOT AGAINST THE PARTY (April 16, 1956)

THE LESSONS WE SHOULD DRAW FROM THE PARTY CONFERENCE OF THE CITY OF TIRANA (April 21,1956)

THE 20th CONGRESS DID NOT PUT MATTERS RIGHT (May 26, 1956)

MOLOTOV HAS BEEN SACRIFICED FOR TITO (June 4, 1956)

KHRUSHCHEV SUGGESTS TO USE THE EXPERIENCE OF HITLER (June 23, 1956)

ANOTHER SLANDER LAID ON STALIN (July 2, 1956)

THE FOREIGN PRESS SALIVATES OVER THE MANOEVRE OF KHRUSHCHEV (July 3, 1956)

THE CHINESE ARE FOLLOWING THE ROAD OF THE SOVIETS (September 17, 1956)

IN NO WAY WILL WE MAKE CONCESSIONS ON PRINCIPLES (November 13, 1956)

TITO ATTACKS SOCIALISM, KHRUSHCHEV APPEASES (November 22, 1956)

TO KEEP OUR UNITY STRONG FOR IT IS VITAL (January 3, 1957)

WHAT ARE RAKOSI’S MISTAKES? (January 8, 1957)

THE THESES OF THE 20th CONGRESS HAVE CREATED A DANGEROUS SITUATION (February 13, 1957)

ON THE INTERNATIONAL SITUATION AND THE TASKS OF THE PARTY (February 13, 1957)

EPITHETS AGAINST OUR PARTY AND PEOPLE (April 11, 1957)

ECONOMIC COOPERATION WITH THE AMERICAN IMPERIALISTS (May 28, 1957)

AN “ANTI-PARTY GROUP”? (July 4, 1957)

THE YUGOSLAV AGENT PANAJOT PLAKU SENDS A LETTER TO KHRUSHCHEV (July 22, 1957)

KHRUSCHEV “DEFENDS” US BEAUTIFULLY (August 5, 1957)

ZHUKOV DOES NOT AGREE WITH KHRUSHCHEV (October 17, 1957)

ZHUKOV DISMISSED FROM ABROAD (October 25, 1957)

A DECLARATION THE ULTRA-REVISIONISTS OPPOSE (November 16, 1957)

TOGLIATTI’S “POLYCENTRISM” IN EMBRYO (November 19, 1957)

THE MORE THE SOVIETS CONCEED, THE MORE THE SITUATIONS WORSEN (January 9, 1958)

KHRUSHCHEV’S “COEXISTENCE” (March 12, 1958)

KHRUSHCHEV MEETS WITH ALL THE BOURGEOIS (March 24, 1958)

THE SOVIETS DO NOT UNDERSTAND THE BETRAYAL OF THE TITOITES (April 9, 1958)

COMECON CONSULTATION WORK STARTED (May 20, 1958)

MEETING OF THE POLITICAL CONSULTATIVE COUNCIL OF THE WARSAW PACT (May 24, 1958)

MODERN REVISIONISM MUST BE FOUGHT MERCILESSLY UNTIL ITS COMPLETE THEORETICAL AND POLITICAL DESTRUCTION (June 22, 1958)

LENIN’S BOOK ON THE STRUGGLE AGAINST REVISIONISM CAME OUT (July 4, 1958)

KHRUSHCHEV SETS CONDITIONS FOR HIS ARRIVAL IN ALBANIA (May 19, 1959)

THE VISIT THROUGH OUR COUNTRY BEGAN (May 27, 1959)

KHRUSHCHEV CONTINUES HIS VISIT TO THE SOUTH (June 2, 1959)

FROM KHRUSHCHEV’S STAY IN ALBANIA (June 3, 1959)

SOME MATTERS FROM THE TALKS WITH KHRUSHCHEV WHICH AROUSE DOUBT (June 6, 1959)

POLICY OF SOFTNESS, COMPROMISES AND CONCESSIONS TOWARDS AMERICAN IMPERIALISM (March 25, 1960)

OUR SUSPICIONS ABOUT THE IMPROPER WORK OF THE SOVIET GEOLOGISTS ARE CONFIRMED (March 30, 1960)

OPPOSING VIEWS WITH THE SOVIET AMBASSADOR (May 16, 1960)

KHRUSHCHEV’S SECOND LETTER — WHAT IS HIDDEN BEHIND HIS ACTIONS (June 8, 1960)

A MEETING WHICH IS TURNING INTO A PLOT (June 21, 1960)

KHRUSHCHEV WILL NEVER DECEIVE THE PARTY OF LABOUR OF ALBANIA (June 22, 1960)

WE SHOULD NOT SUBMIT TO ANY PRESSURE (June 24, 1960)

OUR STRUGGLE AGAINST THE NEW, DISGUISED REVISIONISTS HAS BEGUN (July 27, 1960)

THEY SUMMON US TO MOSCOW TO FORCE US TO CAPITULATE (August 16, 960)

KHRUSHCHEV AND HIS COLLEAGUES INCREASE THE PRESSURE ON US (September 10, 1960)

RADIOGRAM TO COMRADE HYSNI KAPO IN MOSCOW (October 1, 1960)

WE ARE NOT FOR SERENADE NOCTURNE (October 7, 1960)

A DISHONOURABLE AND ANTI-MARXIST ACT BY KHRUSHCHEV (November 8, 1960)

SPEECH DELIVERED AT THE MEETING OF 81 COMMUNIST AND WORKERS’ PARTIES IN MOSCOW ON BEHALF OF THE CC OF THE PLA (November 16, 1960)

WE HAVE DONE OUR SACRED DUTY TO MARXISMLENINISM (November 16, 1960)

RADIOGRAM TO COMRADE HYSNI KAPO IN MOSCOW (November 30, 1960)

ON THE MEETING OF THE REPRESENTATIVES OF THE COMMUNIST AND WORKERS’ PARTIES WHICH WAS HELD IN MOSCOW IN NOVEMBER 1960 (December 19, 1960)

THE PRINCIPLED AND CONSISTENT STRUGGLE AGAINST IMPERIALISM AND REVISIONISM HAS BEEN AND REMAINS THE ROAD OF OUR PARTY (December 20, 1960)

SLANDERS AND PRESSURE DO NOT FRIGHTEN US —WE DO NOT FALL ON OUR KNEES (February 201961)

FLAGRANT TROTSKYITE VIOLATION OF EVERY NORM OF MARXISM AND EQUALITY (August 4, 1961

THE POLITICAL BUREAU APPROVES THE STATEMENT AGAINST THE MODERN REVISIONISTS’ ATTACKS (October 20, 1961)

TWENTY YEARS OF THE PARTY OF LABOUR OF ALBANIA (November 7, 1961)

THEY TRY TO INTIMIDATE US, WE TERRIFY THEM (November 25, 1961

THE SOVIET GOVERNMENT HAS BROKEN OFF DIPLOMATIC RELATIONS WITH US (December 3,1961)

PANORAMA OF THE YEAR 1961 (December 31, 1961).

WHY HAS GROMYKO GONE TO VISIT TITO? (April 17, 1962)

A NEW AGREEMENT WHICH WILL SERVE THE ARMING AND THE WARMONGERING PLOTS OF THE USA AND THE USSR (May 25, 1962)

THE KHRUSHCHEVITES ARE COWARDS, COMPROMISERS AND TRAITORS (October 23, 1962)

KENNEDY REVEALS KHRUSHCHEV’S COURSE OF BETRAYAL (June 12, 1963)

MODERN REVISIONISM IN THE SERVICE OF AMERICAN IMPERIALISM (June 14, 1963)

THE MODERN REVISIONISTS ON THE WAY TO DEGENERATING INTO SOCIAL-DEMOCRATS AND TO FUSING WITH SOCIAL-DEMOCRACY (April 7, 1964)

AN OPEN LETTER (October 5, 1964)

THE FALL OF THE TRAITOR NIKITA KHRUSHCHEV (October 17, 1964)

THE FALL OF KHRUSHCHEV DOES NOT PUT AN END TO KHRUSHCHEVITE REVISIONISM (November 1, 1964)

 THE CHINESE WANT TO IMPOSE THEIR OPINIONS ON US (November 3, 1964)

BREZHNEV IS TRYING TO FOOL THE CHINESE FIRST OF ALL (November 7, 1964)

TOGLIATTI’S “TESTAMENT,” THE CRISIS OF MODERN REVISIONISM AND THE STRUGGLE OF THE MARXIST-LENINISTS (November 13, 1964)

TWENTY YEARS OF SOCIALIST ALBANIA (November 28, 1964)

MODERN REVISIONISM — THE MAIN DANGER AND ENEMY IN THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNIST AND WORKERS’ MOVEMENT (October 6, 1965)

ON BREZHNEV’S REPORT TO THE 23rd CONGRESS OF THE CPSU (March 30, 1966)

THE OFFICIAL PROCLAMATION OF REVISIONISM …… The Khrushchevites, Tirana 1984, pp. 183-202, 2nd Eng.


Other sources of anti-revisionist material from Albania

Representative Anti-Revisionist Materials from Albania (marxists.org)

Banned or suppressed news in or about Albania (bannedthought.net)

Enver Hoxha Archive – English (250x.com)

Enver Hoxha Internet Archive – Marxists

https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/hoxha/works-index.htm

Enver Hoxha – Selected Works – Left side of the road

Hoxha Works – Marxist Leninist Books

https://marxistleninistbooks.blogspot.com/2022/06/hoxha-works.html


Enver Hoxha – Enver Hoxha’s Books in English

http://www.enverhoxha.info/english/books.php

Content Listing

Floating around the internet is a 4 volume English language compilation entitled “The Collected Writings of the Communist Party of Peru 1968-1999” comprising some 1116 pages. A few are in Spanish. It has been seen in pdf and epub file format. Production wise it has some obscure last lines on various articles where the spacing and setting is off but the entries seem to be of released material from the CPP. No formal identification to its production is evident.

This contents listing is a research aid to the material.

Ho Chi Minh

The MLM publishing house, Foreign Language Press has embarked on producing a new three volume edition of the Selected Works of Ho Chi Minh. The first volume was made available in 2021.

In “The Path Which Led Me to Leninism” Ho Chi Minh describes the excitement of reading Lenin’s writings on colonialism (although the recollection comes from 1960, he is referring to his experiences in 1920).  Ho’s early writings attacks “the hydra of western capitalism” for “stretching its horrible tentacles towards all corners of the globe.” He accuses the French of hypocritically talking about a “civilizing mission” while bringing “misery, ruin, and death” to their colonies. He criticizes the French Socialist Party for silence in the face of these policies and applauds the Communist International for taking up the colonial question. As he explains, “Uncle Ho” embraced Leninism because it offered a “path to liberation” for the Vietnamese people. But there is more than nationalistic motive when Ho describes Leninism as “the radiant sun illuminating our path to final victory, to socialism and communism”.

Ho Chi Minh, real name Nguyen Tat Thanh (1890-1969), Vietnamese Communist leader and the principal force behind the Vietnamese struggle against French colonial rule. He came to symbolise Vietnam’s struggle for independence. His personal qualities of simplicity, integrity, and determination were widely admired, not only within Vietnam but elsewhere as well. In the struggle to complete the liberation of Vietnam, Ho died before the withdrawal of US forces, and defeat of the Saigon regime it had bankrolled and militarily underpinned.  He died on September 2 at the age of seventy-nine.

The revolutionary internationalism and national liberation that motivated the commitment that this outstanding communist displayed throughout his life was evident in the commemorative issue of Vietnam magazine that marked his funeral in 1969.

Literature List: UK Anti-Revisionist Material

The pdf shared is not a catalogue of British-related material drawn from the online archive provided by the Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line.

It contains other material produced around, and within the anti-revisionist Marxist-Leninist movement, and a listing or related material that provides background reference information to that movement without being an exhaustive bibliographical guide (or for bibliophiles, a checklist).

 However, even given those limitation it provides a signpost to the literature produced, and a springboard for any research on the origins and developments within Britain’s anti-revisionist movement from the 1960 to the new century.

Literature List

Ian Greig (1924-1995)

Died aged 70 at Chichester, West Sussex on October 12, 1995.

Long gone, Gerald Ian Greig has faded in the consciousness of many but he played his part in maintaining an obsessive rabid anti-communism that poisoned political life in Britain. A sympathetic obituary noted, “Greig was identified by those unsympathetic to his views as a fully paid up member of the ”reds under the bed” school of thought.”  His professional life ending as Deputy Director of the Foreign Affairs Research Institute, a right-wing “think tank” policy group that focused on the communist threat, and his written output would only substantiate that characterisation.

Born in West London, October 26, 1924, he travelled the route of public school, army, and political journalism familiar in many upper middle class life stories. [i]

In 1942, upon leaving the incubator of Chandos House at Stowe independent school in Buckingham, Greig was commissioned at the age of 18 in a cavalry regiment seeing service in Holland after the D-Day landings. He remained in the Army after the war and time spent in Palestine was said to have stimulated “his lifelong fascination with terrorism and its methods.”

 After a spell as a Conservative constituency, he went into journalism. His informal political contacts were on the right of Britain’s political right. Much of his written output under the name ‘Ian Greig’ had sources  drawn from a reading of public documents and statements published by communists, what is described as “official reports of western Governments” (including the briefing reports of the  small circulation newsletters) and “the statements of defectors who actually took part in the events described”.

In 1961 he was a founding organiser of the Monday Club, a hard right pressure group, separate organisational from the Conservative Party but populated with its members, and others from the Far Right. The thirty-six year old Greig served as Membership Secretary until 1969.

The Monday Club was a reaction (and reactionary), dubious about the rapid decolonisation of Africa foreshadowed in Macmillan’s ”wind of change” speech to the South African Parliament, which illiberal Tories saw as the last straw. The club stated that Macmillan had “turned the Party Left” and attracted Conservatives who looked for leadership to the Marquis of Salisbury.

 They were in that racist colonialist way disparaging about the former colonies’ ability to rule themselves satisfactorily and worried about the opportunities this offered the communists to further their strategic aims.  Ian Greig’s Monday club opposed what it described as the “premature” independence of Kenya, and the breakup of the Central African Federation, which was the subject of its first major public meeting in September 1961. It was fundamentally opposed to decolonisation, and defended white minority rule in South Africa and Rhodesia. Or as the obit in the Glasgow Herald politely put it: The group published papers on South Africa and Rhodesia and remained well disposed to the Smith regime after it declared UDI in 1965.

The soft-pedalling of Greig’s opinions continued with a reference that:

Certainly he shared the views of those like retired General Sir Frank Kitson that more should be done to prepare the armed forces to cope with terrorism.

In fact Ian Greig was a former Senior Executive of the Institute for the Study of Conflict,[ii]  a right-wing propaganda group established by Brian Crozier in 1970. It ran until 1989 and produced a series of reports on terrorism, guerrilla war, union activism and other topics. Institute offered professional and authoritative-sounding analyses, both for the general public and for more specialised audiences of academics, policy makers, police officials, and military commanders. It provided respectability to right-wing and repressive policies, primarily through its dissemination of academic presented studies.[iii] It also developed connections with other right-wing organisations and offered training on ‘subversives’ to police and the military.

 His life was spent around the networks of power, lobbying, public relations and the communications activities that operate as keyboard warriors in the shadows, away from accountability the various “think tanks” of AIMS and Common Cause and others were outlets for his work. Greig’s prolific published themes reflected the anxieties of a section of the western political class as seen in an incomplete bibliography of books and briefings compiled from Foreign Affairs Publishing – postal address one-time above the shops at Arrow house, 27-31 Whitehall, SW1A 2BY. These were reviewed in foreign affairs journals, bought by the university’s libraries (see Trinity College Library Dublin) and included on undergraduate reading lists even today, and of course, digitalised.

The first to gain attention was The Assault on The West published in 1968 / 14 editions published between 1968 and 1974 in English and Chinese (Taipei: Youth Cultural Enterprise (1974))

Greig’s book The Assault on the West (1968) spelled out the dangers which he believed insufficiently alert western democracies faced from expansionist Communism aided by those engaged on internal subversion. It carried an approving preface by a close friend of Sir Alec Douglas-Home who shared his political views on the dangers of Communist expansion.

Sir Alec Douglas-Home (1903 -1995), served as Foreign Secretary then Prime Minister from October 1963 to October 1964. Narrowly defeated in the 1964 UK general election, Douglas-Home resigned the party leadership in July 1965. Noted for his forcefully expressed anti-communist beliefs, Home’s description of it as “a careful and detailed analysis of the multifarious ways in which they deal in subversion” reflects the cold war mentality that there was only one side as the problem. The focus on a grand narrative of expansion and subversion discounted western policies, the rhetoric of roll back and containment, and actions that created conditions for international mistrust and tension. The imperialist self-interest in his anti-communist crusading was subtly acknowledged:

The advertised aim of this “study of communist political warfare techniques [was] to present a general survey of the strategy and tactics employed by International Communism in its bid for world domination…..The main thrust of the communist offensive is now being centred upon attempts to gain control or influence over the developing countries of Asia, Africa and South America in which areas of the world the West’s vital sources of raw material lie.”

Work that followed reflected the angst of the age when resistance and liberation at home and abroad threatened the status quo, when linking arms and running down the Strand was an act of sedition.


Today’s Revolutionaries: a study of some prominent revolutionary movements and methods of sedition in Europe and the United States

14 editions published between 1970 and 1971 in 3 languages

Subversion: Propaganda, Agitation and the Spread of People’s War (1973)

5 editions published in 1973 

The Communist Challenge to Africa: an Analysis of Contemporary Soviet, Chinese and Cuban Policies (1977) Foreign Affairs Publishing now Richmond, Surrey based. 26 editions published in 1977 

Lord Chalfont’s endorsement in the book reflects part of the nexus of interlocking like=minded people and groups on the anti-communist landscape that sought to bolster and underpin the ideological authority that defended the West by attacking the East. He agrees that “many Western observers have come to the conclusion, reached some time ago by Chinese foreign policy experts, that the Soviet Union is engaged upon a programme of global expansion – that the Russians are, in effect, the new imperialists.” [A topic for a different posting]

According to the distorted and selective worldview  of people like Greig, the West’s rush to decolonize left an open door for the world’s new colonizing super-power – Russia. When Russia and, to a lesser extent China, moved through that door, the stage was set for the chaos and bloodshed that has become part and parcel of life on the continent. Written to make it plain that “foreign Communism is using the “liberation” of Africa as a stepping stone to its self-proclaimed goal of world domination.” South Africa, South West Africa and Rhodesia are clearly obstacles on the way to this goal – obstacles that Moscow would very much like removed – which was why, in the face of the national liberation armed struggle such racist white minority rule was defended by so many in Greig’s Monday Club and beyond.

Greig’s dire warning continued in numerous articles, through the Foreign Affairs Research Institute newsletter and in East-West Digest, of the threat to the West. Throughout 1977 churning out

  • East-West Digest: ‘Some recent developments affecting the defence of the Cape route’
  • Foreign Affairs Research Institute paper: ‘Moscow’s control over Mozambique and Angola’.
  • Foreign Affairs Research Institute paper: ‘Barbarism and communist intervention in the Horn of Africa’ by Ian Greig.
  • Foreign Affairs Research Institute paper and East-West Digest: ‘The need to safeguard NATO’s strategic raw materials from Africa’.
  • Foreign Affairs Research Institute paper: ‘The escalating Soviet and Cuban involvement in Africa’ by Ian Greig.

Africa: Soviet Action and Western Inaction (1978)

Iran and the lengthening Soviet shadow (1978)

The Ultra-Left Offensive Against Multinational Companies: Moscow’s Call for World Trade Union Unity (1979) 9 editions published between 1978 and 1980

The continuing crisis in Iran (1979) with James Philips

The security of Gulf oil (1980)

The need to respond to Soviet military pressure in the Third World (1980)

Soviet bloc activities in Africa (1980)

The emerging nature of the Soviet grand design (1980)

A new shadow falls on the Gulf (1981)

They mean what they say : a compilation of Soviet statements on ideology, foreign policy and the use of military force (1981) 7 editions published in 1981 

East Germany’s continuing offensive in the third world (1982)

The extent of Soviet support for African “liberation movements” revealed: report to the Committee on the Judiciary, U.S. Senate, 1982.

Soviet global power projection at the third world (1982)

The police under attack (1986) published by AIMs for Industry , an anti-trade union group , associated with Michael Ivens, in defence of free enterprise and freedom, publishers of the red scare material like  Reds under the Bed, Aims of Industry (January 1974)

Terrorism: a brief survey of the extent and nature of the threat from terrorist groups in Europe [and] in the Middle East (1987) published by Common Cause

The Second World War and Northern Ireland (1990)  published by Friends of the Union founded in 1986 by 16 Tory MPs and eight peers to maintain the Union of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The organisation was wound up in 2006

Greig’s career across the gamut of right-wing causes marks him out as yesteryear’s shadow warrior upholding the Unionist cause, he wrote several pamphlets on Northern Ireland, some dealing with the influence of ultra-left groups.


[i] ) Ian Greig (Obituary), Glasgow Herald 4 November 1995. 

[ii]) Its history and operations quite exposed, and studied eg Michaels, J. H. (2014). The Heyday of Britain’s Cold War Think Tank: Brian Crozier and the Institute for the Study of Conflict, 1970–79. In Transnational Anti-Communism and the Cold War (pp. 146-160). Palgrave Macmillan

iii)  Including Bertil Haggman’s 1975, Sweden’s Maoist “subversives”: a case study. Conflict studies, no. 58

News from FLP

An accelerated publishing programme saw the first webinar from Foreign Language Press now available on Youtube and includes the web launch of two new titles: J. Moufawad-Paul offers an exacting analysis of the different trends that emerged out of the victory, development, and ultimate defeat of the Chinese revolution, exploring maoism after Mao in his Critique of Maoist Reason. Also discussed in the presentation is number 19 in the Colourful Classic series , a reprint of the 1975 A New Outlook on Health with an introduction that contextualise the issues in healthcare policy in the ongoing global COVID-19 pan­demic , including the addition of some detailed footnotes. The footnotes provide more current sta­tistics and some updates about how healthcare and the US economy has changed in the past forty plus years.

A brief history of the development of the publishing endeavour is also provided by Chris Kistler in the internationally organized Zoom webinar.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aQjZ6kq3_0g

The next webinar is on Sunday, August 30, North America: 9:00PM EST/6:00PM PST featuring two titles in the New Roads series.

Like Ho Chi Minh! Like Che Guevara! focuses on the Ethiopian communist movement in the 1960s and 1970s. Ian Scott Horst’s – whose principle contribution made EROL’s national section on Ethiopia such a valuable online legacy to the struggle in the region – provides an historical treasure trove of first hand accounts and narratives from the actors themselves documenting the heady, complicated and ultimately tragic events of that revolution.

A collection of writing from the imprisoned K. Murali (Ajith) confronts and counters Brahmanism, an ideological linchpin of the Indian ruling class, is also featured

Other titles, including corrected reprints of the additional selected Works of Mao Zedong originally published in India  by Kranti Publications, are available from its webshop  http://flpress.storenvy.com/

https://foreignlanguages.press/

https://www.marxists.org/history/erol/ethiopia/index.htm

Foreign language Press ~ New Roads ~

The Marxist-Leninist-Maoist Publishing House , Foreign Languages Press established in 2016 have extended their publishing programme beyond « Colourful Classics » (see previous posting   here) and have four titles in their New Roads collection that publishes original works and essays that analyze the challenges and answer the questions posed by Marxist-Leninist-Maoists today, and shed light on lesser known aspects of the history of the communist and workers movement.


From Victory to defeat : China’s socialist road and capitalist development (Pao-Yu Ching)

Preface by J. Moufawad-Paul

How can a country that developed the most advanced socialist society in the history of the world change directions so quickly and so completely? In From Victory to Defeat Pao-Yu Ching dissects this question, providing economic analysis of what it means to actually “build socialism” with all of the necessary contradictions and obstacles that must be overcome.

Addressing seven commonly asked questions, Pao-Yu Ching gives accessible explanations to the complicated issues China faced in its socialist transition and the material basis for its capitalist reversal.


Silage Choppers and Snake Spirits : the lives and struggles of two Americans in modern China (Dao-Yuan Chou)

Forward by Juliet de Lima-Sison

Silage Choppers and Snake Spirits follows the journey of two Americans who left the United States to experience first-hand the events of the Chinese revolution. Sid Engst came from a poor farming family in upstate New York and found himself on the run from Chiang Kai-shek’s generals in the barren hills of northern China. Joan Hinton went from working on the Manhattan Project in Los Alamos to wearing disguises and ducking the Nationalist government in the Chinese communist underground. The two married and stayed in China to raise a family and help build a new society.

This biography follows their experiences working alongside ordinary Chinese people, from the Inner Mongolian steppe to a state commune in Beijing. Their lives and struggles offer an unusual insight into the events that make up modern Chinese history from Liberation to the Cultural Revolution.


Which East Is Red? The maoist presence in the Soviet Union and Soviet bloc Europe 1956-1980 (Andrew Smith)

This short essay tell the little known story of antirevisionists and Maoists in post-Stalin Eastern Europe. Interrogating the myth of a monolithic Marxism in Eastern Europe, overwhelmingly supportive of Khrushchev, Andrew Smith answers the question he posits: To what extent was Eastern Europe red?


Mao Zedong’s “On Contradiction” – Study Companion (Redspark Collective) contradictions-207x300

On Contradiction is Mao Zedong’s seminal text on dialectical materialism. Perhaps his most well-known work, it’s been read and studied by millions all over the world and is required reading for all those who seek to objectively analyze the world and struggle to solve the contradictions in it. The Redspark Collective prepared this study companion to assist readers by providing historical and modern day context and examples.

Redspark maintains a news site that focus on organisations engaged in people’s war

Also distributed from their webstore are some titles from the French language publishers Soleil Rouge.

Foreign-Language-Press-LogoSMALL-300x300

Why Bother?

This “open letter” is both belated and contrived to commemorate an anniversary that may have no significance outside what Phil Ochs sang as “a small circle of friends”.That anniversary is that a decade has passed this month since work began on EROL – the Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line.

Sparked by a conversation on that gloriously sunny day at the London Radical Book Fair the question was raised “Why the effort on EROL”; after all, as you rightly commented revisionism isn’t going anywhere. The point has been made since the mid-1960s that the identifier of “anti-revisionism” is a politically passé term since Maoism has now superseded the need for using such a term as a prefix. Underlying the question was the thought that, given the ongoing struggles and need to rebuild a movement, was this really a furrow worthy ploughing? It is an argument that deserved greater reflection than given in that moment.

The trajectory of modern revisionism hit a brick wall: although even with the collapse of the Soviet Union, there are still on the English left, aging remnants along the British Road arguing the same failed politics, while Trotskyism thrashes in its last stages unable to shake off its legacy as the failed competitor in a struggle nearly a century old. The only advanced this century has been the stalled revolutionary struggles in the Global South largely led by Maoist forces who drew their initial inspiration from the anti-revisionist struggle associated with the Albanian and Chinese communist parties. It is that history that EROL addresses but not from the perspective of bourgeois scholarship or sectarian belief that one red thread persisted throughout its history.

What have we spent nearly ten years building is an archive of revolutionary endeavour. Cynics claim that ‘history belongs to the victors! Don’t belief a word of it! History belongs to those who keep records and tell their story.

The function of making the record accessible has provided an access point to a political trend and argumentation and built a foundational backstory that illustrates the legacy and past attempts to tackle the strategic and tactical challenges facing a revolutionary movement.

EROL focus is on document publication – a low priority in conventional academic and commercial publishing. Initially encouraged by a non-sectarian American Trotskyist (thank you David), the bulk of the administrative duties and political tone of EROL since started up in 2009 has been borne by an equally industrious and non-sectarian veteran of the American New Communist Movement as the Maoists were known (thank you Paul).

By the early 2000s, very little of the anti-revisionist record was easily available in English. The entire experience was in danger of languishing in the margins, being largely forgotten. For the most part, the documents in question had been published in in books or periodicals at the time of the birth and demise of the anti-revisionist movement.

Today there is no equivalent resource seen in the incredible wealth and diversity of items posted by EROL. No pay walls or subscriptions here – a true product of unpaid voluntary labour for the greater good, it allows access and has more holdings than even a National Library collection of record. The digital medium makes somethings possible that would be very difficult in the physical world such as the international co-operation and co-ordination for such political depositories such as the Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line that allows access to material that is scattered, rare and uncatalogued.

The internet provided a medium for the development of an accessible collection that initially was constructed from the personal resources of the EROL team, and subsequently built from contributions and further research facilitated by the growth of relevant websites.

This site is purposeful, in the words of a committed Canadian blogger:

“it is important to examine the strengths and limitations of revolutionary organizations that were once significant so as to avoid repeating past errors.  Often we tend to repeat the past’s mistakes, even when we think we are forging a new path, and there is sometimes little to know historical memory over an experience that can and should teach us something about how to organize as communists now.”

[JMP, Learning From Documents of Past Struggle (continued) May 31, 2013 ]

The transnational experience of the anti-revisionist movement offers the possibility of assessing the experienced gained in the historical process of development, growth and implosion of the emergent Marxist-Leninist movement. EROL goes some way to make this available and whether that experience of ML groups and parties in the advanced capitalist countries is utilised in future party-building, it is clear that changes comes from within.Fracturing of the CRCU the pioneering ML organisation in Britain, as charted in this research note, signposts some of the internal factors that contributed to its diminutive existence.

As best we can, we try to pass on and, where necessary, rediscover this laboured past and make it available for a new generation to weigh and assess. EROL’s publishing work aimed to do this for a small but significant fragment of our revolutionary heritage.

IN providing primary material, EROL reduces a dependency on partisan historical interpreters   and provides a basis for assessment of rival explanations based on direct access to source materials. EROL goes someway to illustrate the inherent complexity of political action, the validity of argument and interpretation and the contributions and failures of the movement. Even without an editorial narrative it illustrates that political struggle involves far more than following a single line or leader. Navigating the ideas and actions presented by the various actors in the drama of the anti-revisionist movement enriches an understanding of the struggles of the age.

The contributions made in the early phase of the anti-revisionist period to forging and forcing democratic, social, economic’ and cultural progress has never been adequately recognised or appreciated. The shortcomings were explained by the paucity of material. That is no longer the case. The rarity of surviving copies, limited distribution, the costs of acquisition, the preservation of the records of that anti-revisionist Marxist-Leninist trend are all barriers that EROL dismantles.

Most of what was included would probably not have been saved in archives or re-published elsewhere. There laid out in their own words, they can be read, studied, analysed and evaluated. Not least, by any means, in redressing the want of educational and study material, has been the contribution of EROL – an online archive accessible, saveable, useable for activist, the curious, enthusiastic scholars and reluctant students pursuing assignments, will find their sources wherever they may be.

There is a duality in such an archive, not to survey the past, but in our need to look forward and consider where we are going. For the 21st-century reader, this history can provokes reflection about the tactics and strategy of struggle, about the nature of working class advanced, about the shape of communism in a different national sections. The echoes of past politics are played out in the debates and discussions of today, and knowledge of those previously contested position can inform the debates of today. As EROL stalwart, Paul Saba noted in his insightful review of Max Elbaum’s history of the movement;

“Many in the NCM considered themselves too busy making history to spend much time studying history’s lessons. As a result, mistakes were made, wrong directions taken, that otherwise might have been avoided.”

[Lessons from One Left to the Next: Revolution in the Air Reissued. Viewpoint magazine July 19, 2018]

Perhaps there are too few reminiscence pieces and the extensive collection of original documents, internal and those once in the public domain draw upon what is available and there is a monolingual basis in its presentation. There are other sites in specific languages yet EROL has always had an internationalist intention, hence the different national sections.With 19 separate national sections providing information in English on, and primary documents from, anti-revisionist movements, organisations and parties, the Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line is the first web stop for any historical investigation of global Maoism. EROL maintains this history that had faded into obscurity. In providing the source material from the movement (as Canadian editor Malcolm pointed out) we do not want to force conclusions on people from that period but to provide documents so that those studying them can draw their own. EROL does accept original contributions on the history of the ML movement but it would be a different forum to undertake the task to explain mistake individuals clearly identified from that history, what lines were worth pursuing and how struggles exposed the weaknesses of the organisations involved.


 

 

 

Just Read…How the East Is Read

“Intruder in Mao’s Realm” is what Richard Kirby calls his account of living in China from 1975- 1977 when teaching English in provincial China. His account forty years after the event was not going to be that of a maoist loyalist [being a self-described soft Trotskyist], and he recalls incidents that do not reflect flattering on himself, nor his hosts, but it is a record of lived history. A well written memoir with stories that reflect some of the reality and anxieties of the time, it is an intruder’s eyewitness account that provides colour and texture at a time of transition for China. His frustration as a foreigner is clear although his sympathy on a personal level in always there.

It is in a well-established genre of writing, autobiographical, even self-indulgent, with description and travel behind the bamboo curtain, personal accounts of China of its day, limited and empirical judgements abound. He questioned the society he was in, and found, like elsewhere it couldn’t live up to the aspiration it publicised. For many westerners such scepticism resulted in disappointment for ardent sinophiles and Maoists alike.

A sideline concern

Kirby initiated a visited China through SACU – Society for Anglo-Chinese Understanding:

“Back in those early days, the prospective China traveller had to submit to a mild ideological screening. When my turn came, this was conducted by Betty, a no nonsense woman in her sixties, who with her coiled grey hair, and wire glasses evidently modelled herself on the serve female cadre beloved of Chinese propaganda posters.” [Earnshaw Books 2016: 12]

Alas Richard missed out there; as someone who worked with Betty for a few years, there were few as warm and welcoming, thoughtful and generous and politically concerned as Betty. She did work hard, and expected the same dedication from others, and in her Wiltshire home, she was as relaxed as she made her guests of which there were many.

There is a niche area of study tied up with study of China’s quest for soft power in the early twenty-first century that looks at foreign friends of Mao’s China that builds on the work of New Zealand academic Anne-Marie Brady [Making the Foreign Serve China: managing foreigners in the People’s Republic 2003] who produced, what many thought a hostile account, in Friend of China – The Myth of Rewi Alley [Routledge 2015]. Exploring the theme of the role of foreigners in China’s diplomatic relations and their sensitive place in China after 1949 – a sensitivity much commented on by Richard Kirby – Brady critically examines fellow New Zealander as a prolific propagandist on the new China, an outspoken ‘foreign friend’ of the Chinese regime. A follow up discussion on the techniques of hospitality and international image building can be found in the May 2014 RHS lecture ‘The Uses of Foreigners in Communist China’ by Dr Julia Lovell, author of Maoism: A Global History.

“Intruder in Mao’s Realm” joins the bookshelves with other accounts of a variety of experiences ranging from one month field visits to years or decades in China. Sidney Rittenberg’s The Man Who stayed Behind [Duke University Press 2001] told less than it could, as did Sidney Shapiro, An American in China: thirty years in the People’s Republic [New World Press Beijing 1979] and Living In China by 20 authors from abroad that included chapters by veterans of life in Mao’s China: Rewi Alley, David Crook, Elise Cholmeley, Sidney Shapiro. [New World Press Beijing 1979]. These authors were all friends of China.

reading mao in beijing.png

Figure 1 Mao’s American Friends

Among two “eyewitness accounts” from the committed left whose residency in Beijing overlap and provide contrasting frank accounts of their experiences are ex-CP, early anti-revisionist activist memoir:

Muriel Seltman, What’s Left? What’s Right? A Political Journey via North Korea and the Chinese Cultural Revolution – 2014 Matador; 2nd Revised ed.,

and a long-time resident communist working in China, David Crook’s Hampstead Heath to Tian An Men – The autobiography of David Crook published online http://www.davidcrook.net/simple/main.html . The Crooks published two standard sociological studies, Revolution in a Chinese Village, Ten Mile Inn (London: Routledge & Paul, 1959) and The First Years of Yangyi Commune (Routledge & K. Paul, 1966). The British sinologist Delia Davin wrote in David’s obituary that through that “classic study” and other writings and talks, the Crooks “provided a positive picture of China to the outside world at a time when cold war simplifications were the norm.”

Delia Davin “David Crook A communist who fought against Franco, spied for Stalin and wrote a classic book on change in China” The Guardian, Sunday 17 December 2000

There has been a long pedigree of foreigner’s visiting the little known Chinese communists, one of the best known Edgar Snow, author of the classic travelogue and history’s first journalistic draft, Red Star Over China published in 1937. Like others who became regular visitors behind the “bamboo curtain”, Snow and his wife Helen, went on to produce running commentaries on developments in China : Red China Today : the other side of the river Random House [1962] and China’s Long Revolution [1971] were both mass market paperbacks bring news to an international audience.

The Wall Has Two Sides: a portrait of China today [1962] by Felix Greene was the only US-based correspondent who visited China much in those years. He spent several months there in 1957, 1960 and 1964, travelling (unescorted) throughout the country.

Many friends of China and “political tourists” offered their observations and experiences during a sojourn in the People’s Republic to provide partial insight into the attitudes, ideals, and life styles of the Chinese people:

Israel Epstein, I Visited Yenan: an eyewitness account of the communist-led liberated areas in North West China. First published in 1945, it was reprinted by Beijing-based Foreign Language Press in 2003 as part of the China Society for People’s Friendship Studies series-

Stuart Gelder, The Chinese Communists [Victor Gollancz 1946] is an early example of the reporter drafting the historic record in the drive for national liberation following the defeat of Japan.

Robert Payne, Journey to Red China [Heinemann 1947] was a visit to the liberated region of north China providing an account of people he met there, recording the things they said and hope.

The classic account of newly liberated China was in the prophetic adventure recounted in Jack Belden’s China Shakes the World first published in 1949 [Penguin 1973 ] Reprinted by Foreign Language Press in 2004, James Bertram, Return to China [Heinemann 1957] provided an impression of post-liberation China on the cusp of the Great Leap Forward.

In the early seventies among English-language offerings were,

Daily Life in Revolutionary China [1972] by an Italian Communist Maria Antonietta Macciocchi .

Jack Chen, A Year in Upper Felicity: life in a Chinese Village during the Cultural Revolution, set in North Honan province. [Harrap 1973]

Arthur Glaston & Jean Savage, Daily Life in People’s China based on Marco Polo Bridge People’s commune near Beijing. [Thomas Y. Cromwell Company 1973]

William Hinton, was another American friend of China – a card carrying farmer and Maoist so to say – whose studies around Chinese agricultural developments recorded the changing fortune of Mao’s China and after through, amongst others, Fanshen: a documentary of Revolution in a Chinese Village, based on events in 1948 ; the sequel Shenfan: The Continuing Revolution in a Chinese Village and Iron Oxen: a documentary of revolution in Chinese farming [1970] ,the Hundred Day War: the cultural revolution at Tsinghua University [Monthly review Press 1972] and The Privatization of China: The Great Reversal [Earthscan 1992].

The Swedish writer Jan Myrdal provided a parallel account through Report From a Chinese Village [1963] set in Lin Ling in northern province of Shensi, and a follow up visit in China: the revolution continued [1970] and China Notebook 1975-78 [Liberator Press Chicago 1979]

Of course, other accounts followed as China “Open-up” in the eighties onwards

Other reads here

and here  and here and Reading about the ‘Naxalites’

To keep our red flag flying in Peru

 

 

READINGS

 

MLM Line Struggle concerning the struggle in the International Communist Movement on the role of Chairman Gonzalo

 

#3

Documentary material on radical themes & occurrences

 

INTRODUCTION

The inspirational struggle unleashed in Peru last century still reverberates, and for all its complexities, it generates debate and confrontations that shape contemporary revolutionary politics. The Communist Party of Peru were commonly referred to as the Shining Path. That struggle did not begin with its armed phase in 1980, nor 1970 when independent of the Communist Party of Peru — Bandera Roja (red flag), itself formed in 1964, from a split in the revisionist Peruvian Communist Party. Its origins and period of preparation contain valuable experiences to draw upon, however these postings singularly focus on exploring the contentious evaluation of the role of the imprisoned Chairman Gonzalo. Using participants’ contributions, it illustrates the issues and positions that set the polemical texture as they sought “to keep our red flag flying in Peru.”

In a sense, the international communist movement had had a Peruvian shadow, having to address questions it raised. The 21st century legacy of the armed struggle initiated in the remote countryside of Peru in 1980 was that it raised major questions for revolutionaries throughout the world.

  • It raised the ideological threshold for what constituted Mao’s contribution
  • It suggested a Peruvian template for preparation and laying the foundations for a higher stage of struggle
  • It renew consideration of what constituted the strategic line of protracted people’s war
  • It provided a contentious model of a militarised party organisation
  • It evaluated the idea of leadership with the concept of Guiding Thought
  • It tangentially inspired a minor Third wordlist/Lin Biaoist revival
  • In its disintegration it provides assessment and evaluation to correct the practice of ongoing struggles

To keep our red flag flying in Peru: Word & Web (Part one) 

preidente gonzalo

Access to the writings from the revolution launched in 1980 for an English language audience was limited until two avenues allowed for a wider distribution of translated material. Prior to these developments, small groups of sympathisers and internationalists had to seek out information about the struggle in Peru from specialist outlets and marginal groups, with the development of alternatives lines of communication information was democratised in the access and availability to an interested audience. These were the magazine A World To Win which published statements  issued by the Communist Party of Peru and the emergence of an internet presence in 1996.

  •  SPREADING THE WORD

It was relatively late into the struggle that translated printed material became available to a wider audience outside that of the academics and Spanish-speaking activists.

Luis Arce Borja – from El Diario Internacional published in 1989 [reprinting in 1994] the Spanish language volume, Guerra Populae en el Peru, El Pensamiento Gonzalo that collected the most important works of the CPP however some important text like the 1988 El Diario’s Interview of Chairman Gonzalo was missing from the selection, however it was circulated in pamphlet form. It was published by Committee to Support Revolution in Peru, Berkeley (1991). An earlier 156-paged English translation was produced (1989) by Red Banner Editorial House by the People’s Movement Peru of France but had a limited distribution. Likewise with the compilation CPP and Mao Tsetung published in December 1987 – the 95 paged booklet printed in the house-style using red ink.

The London-based Committee Sol Peru had Adolofo Olaechea translate a lecture given by Chairman Gonzalo and published in 1991 the pamphlet, “On the Rectification Campaign based on the study of the document ‘No to Elections! Yes to people’s War!”.

The American solidarity group, the Committee to Support the Revolution in Peru, published English translations of Develop Guerrilla Warfare issued nearly two years after the initiation of the armed struggle in May 1980, and Don’t Vote! issued in 1985 prior to the Peruvian elections. It was not until 2016, that the Utrecht-based Foreign Language Press publishing house produced the first volume of the Collected Works of the Communist Party of Peru covering the years 1968-1987. Three subsequent English-language volumes were planned. The associated website Redspark has the online access at http://library.redspark.nu/Communist_Party_of_Peru.

Promoted as the foremost MLM theoretician, Dr. Abimael Guzman Reynoso, was better known (before his arrest) by his nom de guerre President Gonzalo, chairman of the Central Committee of the CPP. Here Gonzalo Though was described as “the creative application of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism in Peru, and is, so far, the greatest attempt to develop the fourth stage of Marxism.”

While Redspark notes that “All writings of Communist Party of Peru between 1968 to 1992 are attributed to Chairman Gonzalo” since his arrest there have been internet statements and English-language pamphlets attributed to the Communist Party of Peru. Those produced by Ediciones Bandera Roja, and Français textes de langague are available from Les Éditions Soleil Rouge at http://www.bibliomarxiste.net/documents/perou/.

With “The Andes Roar” in its first issue in 1985, the RIM associated magazine, A World to Win, carried news, statements and commentary on the PCP up until its last edition in 2006. In print, this source was, as explored in part three, not so much as supplementary, but  more contentious in relationship with small circulation newsletters of the various solidarity organisations – New Flag in the USA, the London-based Committee Sol Peru, Borca’s Brussels relaunch of El Diario International (EDI), the Spanish and English language editions of MPP’s Sol Rojo / Red Sun. Especially when much of this solidarity material migrated to find expression on sympathetic websites. A World to Win , the bulletin of the IEC and Peru Action and News were produced by the same stable of activists and publication ended when the patronage of the RCP, USA was eventually withdrawn.

A contemporary feature arose as a distinctly international Gonzaloist trend is now coalescing based partly on a common position expressed in the joint statement , Defend the Life of Chairman Gonzalo ( Dec 31st, 2013) issued to mark the 21th anniversary of the speech, pronounced from a cage:

prof-ab“In all these years, we have never given up the defense of this speech and of Chairman Gonzalo, the support to the PCP, and even today, while the People’s War in Peru suffers a phase of flexure and the Party struggles to overcome it, we support the Peruvian comrades who in Peru and abroad carry on the ideology and practice and the line of the People’s War pointed out by Chairman Gonzalo, as established in the 1st Congress of the Party”

However this trend does not embrace all who express support in defence of Gonzalo as theoretician of Maoism, as is the position of Marxist Leninist Maoist Center of Belgium, and Communist Party of France (Marxist-Leninist-Maoist), co-publishers of the online journal, Communism.

And there has been the recent appearance of PPM (RC) in opposition to Red Sun magazine of the Peru People’s Movement.

Among the multitude of English language websites providing news of the struggle in Peru, the question of authorial authenticity for pronouncements attributed to the Communist Party of Peru was far from settled.

  • SURFING THE WEB

Following Guzman’s capture, supporters created the International Emergency Committee to Defend the Life of Dr. Abimael Guzman (IEC) to raise awareness of his condition as a political prisoner with good reason given the Peruvian state’s murder of Sendero Luminoso prisoners.

The emergence in April 1996 of a website associated with a US –based solidarity group, New Flag meant that official documents of the Communist Party of Peru became instantly accessible worldwide, and distributors and readers would not risk reprisals. It provided a means to combat the state’s psychological warfare. What was publicised on the site showed that Party documents confirm, for instance, that the spokespeople for the PCP believed that Guzman’s letters and videoed TV appearance in 1993 — when, in an extraordinary jail cell volte face, he appeared to admit defeat and call for peace talks — were an elaborate hoax.

An interested author observed of a visit to the (now defunct) website http://www.blythe.org/peru-pcp

“Portraits of Marx, Lenin and Mao emerged like faded ghosts on to my aged black-and-white screen. Five buttons offered routes to “Frequently Asked Questions” about the “People’s War”, as well as to the party’s documents in Spanish and English, to back issues of New Flag and information on “President Gonzalo” — the nom de guerre of Shining Path’s founder and leader, Abimael Guzman.”  [Simon Strong, Shining Path wages flame war. Financial Times, London: May 13 1996 p. 13]

This site emerged as an alternative source of information (and analysis) to the established Committee to Support the Revolution in Peru (CSRP) based in Berkeley, California, publishers of Peru Action & News and seen as a front for the RCP, USA headed by Robert Avakian.poster

While not an official site as such, Maura Conway’s study noted it had the aura of a “quasi-official nature…founded and maintained by supporters who appear to have no direct ties to the groups for whom they cheerlead.” [Maura Conway | Terrorist Web Sites: Their Contents, Functioning, and Effectiveness in Philip Seib (Ed.), Terrorism and the Media. New York: Palgrave (2005).]

Sympathizing Websites

As noted above, over the years, there have been a proliferation of Sendero related websites. There used to be just two. As internal disputes developed the dynamics of the Internet let many flowers bloom however some information and documents scanned were put on line by, say the « Maoist Document Project », on a website that does not exist anymore. There is an archive afterlife for some like the Maoist Internationalist Movement, based in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

The CSRP site contained a section for ‘Documents of the Communist Party of Peru,’ which included numerous reports and declarations of the Central Committee, and issues of its own publication Peru Action and News, earliest available issue dated from summer 1997. Each newsletter was six to ten pages in length and contained political commentary, statements of the Committee to Support the Revolution in Peru (CSRP), news, and other information.

The site also had a large section devoted to the activities of the International Emergency Committee to Defend the Life of Dr. Abimael Guzmán (IEC) which contained reports, conference proceedings, published advertisements, leaflets, and emergency bulletins, while elsewhere on the site the text of Dr. Guzmán’s 1992 ‘Speech from a Cage’ was reproduced along with accompanying photographs.

Elsewhere on the Net in the 1990s, solidarity activists engage in flame wars — verbal lacerations — that range from the farcical to the deadly. These occur mainly on high-volume Marxism discussion lists managed from the University of Virginia in the US.

“Harriet” , one of the main protagonists  signed her letters with his real name, Peruvian exile Adolfo Olaechea. According to Olaechea — who in absentia has been sentenced to life imprisonment in Peru — his country’s intelligence service participates, too. “They have used an account in Germany to send death threats in my name to try to create rifts.”

The high-velocity Net communication  fanned endless splits among PCP’s international supporters and still to be found on mail archive sites are the contributions and acrimonious exchange on Marxism-General list dating from the mid-1990s onwards.

In September 1992, the Peruvian government issued a list of 49 people (many labelled “terrorist criminals”) and 39 organizations network in the United States and Europe As reported Lyndon LaRouche. What it did not discuss in its accompanying commentary on alleged PCP militants, highlighting the overall importance of the Paris-based exiles, were the animosity between the various individuals and often competing organisations. A major analytical flaw was in the assertion that the PCP “actually leads the RIM” whereas the dominance of the RCP USA was shortly to be clearly demonstrated.

One group of supporters abroad the (PPM) Peru People’s Movement’s claim the status of the only generated organ for the party work abroad, with the authority to be able to centralize any kind of support, or materialize a support work for the People’s War in Peru. Its main focus initially being calls the defense of the life of Chairman Gonzalo and later the exhortations to “Impose Maoism” as expressed in Gonzalo Thought and the practice of the Peruvian revolution. PPM’s statements adhere to Gonzalo’s pre-arrest positions and acts as publicist for statements from the Central Committee of the PCP.

The claim to sole leadership was in a confused environment when activists thought “it is not known which one is the Communist Party of Peru, much less who their representatives are abroad”, there are so many “MPP’s”, there are so many “Support Committees”, there are so many “movements who claim to support the people’s war”.

Via its website and publication of the same name, Red Sun, http://www.redsun.org, the Peru People’s Movement criticises

“grouplets of renegades and degenerates that in some cases join together and others of them who want to reestablish their fiefs with merely personal interests… these individuals and grouplets created their different fiefs and called themselves defenders or representatives of the Revolution in Peru: “MPP USA, New Flag”, “MPP Germany”, “MPP Sweden”, “MPP France”, “MPP Switzerland”, the RCP’s “Committee to Support the Revolution in Peru”, etc. Even LAB [Luis Arce Borja] failed to make his own “MPP” and afterward he also wanted to replace the RIM with his” World-wide Mobilization Call.”                                    [Peru People’s Movement COMMUNIQUÉ August 2011]

Such division, PPM explained, “It is the plan of imperialism, the reaction and the new revisionism. And some infiltrators promote this, others want their fiefs like in the old days and others want to satisfy their low desires with trafficking.”

 

Part Two                      Part Three                  Part Four