Today is the 12th death anniversary of legendary Comrade Harbhajan Singh Sohi.Comrade Harbhajan Sohi or HBS was one of the greatest comrades to have ever dipped his feet in the history of the Indian Communist Movement. No comrade was a greater protagonist of the mass line in the last 4 decades after the death of T.Nagi Reddy.He had mastery over Leninist polemics like an architect or surgeon. Few comrades in his day had as much skill in galvanising forces or knitting the scattered party .He faced every political crisis with the surgical skill of a military commander. No Comrade was better in his time in refuting deviations of left sectarianism and right opportunism.HBS in theory and practice after 1979,championed correct relationship of party with mass organisations like none else.
Today ressurecting HBS is all the more important with the rise of post-modernist tendencies within the Communist Movement worldwide and globalization and imperialism is sharpening sits tentacles to an unprecedented level. Within the non maoist camp the party is fragmented in bits and pieces in India today. In such a situation we grossly miss the prowess of Comrades like HBS to bind them together.Neo-fascism of the saffron variety has reached a crescendo and penetrating every sphere.HBS’s mastery in evaluating the enemy or strategy to combat fascist current is greatly missed as well. On top it China is going more fascistic day by day and displaying great nation chauvinism and expansionist policies.HBS was the first comrade in India to detect the trend of Chinese revisionism. He had the soundest political thesis on elections reject participation bad active boycott tactics, with both deviations still predominant in India today. No Comrade as soundly analysed the nature of Indian semi-feudalism after globalization or the International situation from a Leninist pesrpective.On Kashmir situation he had the soundest theoretical clarity in terms of assessing the proletarian nationality level. No Indian comrade defended Stalin with as much Leninist perspective in the Communist revolutionary camp or the ‘Gang of four’ in China. In his lifetime he expressed great admiration and optimism for the Shining path movement led by the Perevian Communist party under Chairman Gonzalo.
What I admire most about HBS was the manner he withstood all the counter revolutionary winds like a boulder weathering the most turbulent of storms or gales. With utmost unflinchness till his very last breath he illuminated the spark of Mao Tse Tung Thought and Revolution. His work methods were a model for every revolutionary cadre and was a master in bringing youth into the fold of the movement. Today in Punjab it is Comrade Sohi who planted the seeds for the most methodical and planned work of the mass organisations ,with cadres imbibing important lesson sin massline practice.Few Comrades confronted left adventurism in the history of the Communist movement as HBS in the early 1970’s when leading the Punjab Coordination Commitee,No Comrdae had a sounder asssment on the proletarian nationality struggle in Kashmir or formulated such a correct position from a Leninist perspective,
HBS was the pivot in guiding party forces in various junctures from the Punjab Communist Revolutionary Commitee ,to the Unity Centre of Communist Revolutionaries of India, Centre for Comunist Revolutionaries of India and finally the Communist Party Re-Organisation Centre of India (Marxist-Leninist)It was his sheer mastery of Marxism Leninism that enabled him to regroup fragmented parts of the party /Most boldly he adopted the correct stand on Punjabi nationality when sections of Communist revolutionaries were entrapped into the quagmire of Sikh seperatism or Khalistani politics.Sohi’s guidance during the Khalisatni movement acted as a pivot in challenging the fascist terror.As a Secretary of the CPRCI(ML) he played an instrumental part in galvanising party forces to crystallize path of peoples war or Mao Thought and maintain the democratic centralist cutting edge of the party. He was convinced that subjective forces did not exist for launching armed peoples war, but never openly attacked the erstwhile C.P.I.(ML.) Peoples War group or later the C.P.I.(Maoist).It was HBS who kintted the scattered parts or binded them to form both the CCRI(in 1988) and the CPRCI(ML) in 1994.Even if underground he inspired many a political youth to integrate with the party or movement.-,nurturing many a comrade. In his memorial meeting it was worth hearing the speech of Jaspal Jassi editor of Surkh Rekha, who gave vibrations of a flame shimmering in his heart. The strides in massline practice in Orissa and Punjab owe a lot to the leadership of Comrade HBS. and the qualitative development within the trade Union movement in West Bengal. In his own right he also inspired forces in Mumbai in Maharashtra –stressing on qualitative essence. He expressed great confidence in the youth establishing leadership in Punjab but inspite of a very strong tribal movement in Orissa expressed reservations over the readiness of the tribal youth. No Comrade more articulately summarised the true nature of Indian semi-feudalism or as accurately assessed the subjective forces nationally and Internationally. Tooth and nail Sohi defended Mao thought as an integral part of Leninism and not as a separate entity.
Possibly under his leadership the PCRC was an even tighter organist than the Nagi Reddy-DV Rao led APCCCR.
A major contribution of HBS was formulating the correct political line on tactics during elections which rejected that of ‘Active Boycott’ and ‘Parliamentary Participation.”He subscribed to tactics of ‘Active Political Campaign’ which till today is the correct political path.Today any genuine revolutionary consciousness has been instilled in the broad masses only through this line, with both tactics of ‘Boycott’ and ‘participation ‘ proving ineffective.
His writings on election sin 1973, On ‘Hold aloft the Invincible banner of Mao Tse Tung Thought in 1980 ‘on Defence of International line of International Communist Movement and Mao Tse Tung thought in 1982. On Kashmir problem in “A striking Expose of the Fragile Political Base and Tyrannical Face of the Indian State “in 1990 and on “Resolution on International line in 1996 ‘.stands amongst the soundest Marxist Leninist theoretical works.
No comrade worldwide was a sounder theoretician on Mao Tse Tung thought and in the very core refuting the anti-Leninist position of RCP led by Bob Avakian ,2 worlds theory of Enver Hoxha , of the revisionist Chinese three worlds theory. He grasped the essence of the massline of T.Nagi Reddy more than any comrade .HBS refuted the anti-Leninist perspective of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement on the theoretical plane with mastery comparable to Chairman Mao.
When erstwhile USSR collapsed as well as East European regimes Sohi even from the underground played a dynamic role like a rearguard action of an army battalion to counter the myth that it was Socialism that was toppled..With the forthrightness of a soldier he banged every nail in the wall to prevent the counter revolutionary wind from infiltrating the revolutionary ranks.
With the intervention of globalisation in a sustained way Sohi never lost his nerves and all the more resolved to sharpen the cutting edge of the party and revolution. He travelled every corner of the country like a true revolutionary crusader, inspiring party ranks.
I wish Sohi was alive till today to give guidance on how to build an effective challenge or a sustained movement to confront the Saffron neo-fascism today. I would have loved to have read a document written by him on nature of fascism in India taking into account the complexities of the modern era.
I wish one day a biography is written on Comrade HBS and all his writings are compiled in a book in English .Hindi and regional languages. Today Surkh Leeh editor Pavel Kussa wrote a commemorative article on Comrade Sohi in The Tribune .Even if short it elaborated why he was atrue champion of revolution
At his homage meeting in June in Bathinda in 2009 a women activist stated “Now I have resolved much mor to work for the organisation of HBS.How we people keep ourselves enmeshed in petty things and issues.”A Student leader stated “Sohi’s death is a very big loss for the organisation.”A prominent well wisher got inspired after Sohi’s death and pledged to depute to party duty ,in spite of nobody contacting him. This is the extent to which HBS touched the very souls of the masses.
WEAKNESSES OF COMRADE HBS
Arguably where Sohi was flawed was his inability to completely adress aspect of agrarian revolution and delaying of people’s war, not able to completely channelize the party forces or give the party liveliness, unable to sufficiently project the political image of the party organisation and not give the party a complete All India character. Even if facing the most troubled times of globalisation in my view HBS should have built liason or an All India revolutionary platform of some kind with other revolutionary groups which facilitated more mass political work .I feel he could have been more original when rising upto the complexities of the movement in formulating a new party work style. After his death he left a culture behind which interpreted secret party as virtually never displaying party literature openly in public meetings openly. In the past erstwhile organisations like Peoples War Group regularly made public their statements, sold party magazines openly with its secretary Kondapali Seetharamiah even giving interviews to the press. Today the party the HBS led, the CPRCI(ML) does not have internet presence or a blog.
I also feel he did not sufficiently probe into reason for setback or reversal in the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution in China or setback in the Communist Movement as a whole. In my view he mechanically stood by 2 line struggle within a Leninist party being sufficient and never reflected the weaknesses of the masses not being able to sufficiently check the party .Possibly he was incorrect in splitting the party in 1979, taking the Punjab unit with him.
I regret that HBS did not take initiative to project the party on the internet or posting it’s party organ online. He also produced no work or document on the caste question, which is a burning issue of the day. It is also questionable why a substantial part of the revolutionary ranks departed from Sohi’s group in the early 1980’s.I really wish HBS could have penned lines in journals like Frontier in another name or have started a theoretical journal defending the backbone of Marxism Leninism Mao Thought.
I regret that annually a memorial meeting is not held by revolutionary ranks like for T.Nagi Reddy and DV.Rao.
TRIBUTES TO COMRDAE HBS IN MEMORIAL MEETING IN JUNE 2009 IN BATHINDA BY SAMGAM COMMITEE.ATTENDED BY 2500 PERSONS
Comrade Harbhajan Sohi(HBS),an outstanding leader of the Communist Revolutionary camp in India which emerged in the late 1960’s ,is no more. He died in mid-June 2009, as a result of a heart attack.
His loss was an immense loss to the Communist Revolutionary Movement is major. And yet the legacy he has left us, in his single contributions to developing the communist revolutionary line and understanding abides.
In the late 1960’s,the Naxalbari armed uprising and its aftermath precipitated the emergence of the communist revolutionary stream in the country. The need of the hour was to establish a basically correct mass revolutionary line and re-organise the communist party on this basis. At this crucial juncture, a large section of the communist revolutionary movement went under the sway of left adventurism.
Among the important forces throughout the country which demarcated from both left adventurism and right opportunism at this juncture was the Punjab Communist Revolutionary Committee,under the leadership of Comrade HBS.It opposed the lines of individual annihilation and took the correct stands on major controversies ,such as the role of mass organizations and economic/partial struggle, the initiation and development of armed struggle, the reorganization of the party, and the leadership of the working class.
As distinct from the left sectarian line, the PCRS, in those years advanced the line of bold mass resistance to repression. By reviving and guiding the revolutionary student and youth movement to lead the heroic Moga struggle,it demonstrated the correctness of this line in practice. Later, in the face of the ruling class “JP movement” of 1974,and during the fight against.S.N.Singh’s right opportunism,the PCRC unwaveringly upheld it’s proletarian orientation. The forces under the PCRC’influence organized a giant”Sangram”rally of various revolutionary democratic sections of the masses, in which they presented the “Path for Salvation of the Crisis –ridden nation”, containing the outline of the democratic revolutionary programme. Programme in a popular form.
While thus striving to establish mass revolutionary practice through militant struggles, the PCRC made serious efforts to locate those Communist revolutionary forces who were fighting for the Communist revolutionary mass line, most importantly the Andhra Pradesh Committee of Communist Revolutionaries.(APCCR)The PCRC was independently pursuing a revolutionary line similar to that of the APCCR,and in 1976 it united with the Unity Centre of Communist Revolutionaries of India(Marxist-Leninist)through a painstaking process.
However at this juncture, just before this merger, the International Commmunist Movement suffered a tremendous blow with the death of Comrade Mao inSeptember 1976 and then seizure of power by the capitalist roader clique in China .This reversal generated great confusion among even genuine Communist REvolutionarie,of which the great majority were temporarily swayed by the deceptive tactics of the Deng-Hua clique. Just before this, the UCCRI(M.L.)suffered the major loss of Comrade T.Nagi Reddy in JULY 1976.
These challenging times brought out the true ideological strength of Comrade HBS.When the revisionist international line of China ‘s Deng Hua clique emerged in a full fledged –form with the People’s Daily article”Chairman Mao’s differentiation of the Three Worlds is a major Contribution to Marxism Leninsm”,.Comrade HBS took a stand against this line, and undertook a fresh systematic study of the strategy and tactics of the International Proletariat. document he prepared first draws on the lessons of the International communist movement in order to reiterate the principles guiding its strategy and tactics and on that basis refutes the ‘Three World Theory”of the People’s Daily.
In this period he also made a special contribution in the article “On Mao Tse Tung Thought’wherein he dealt with the distinctive contributions of Mao Tse Tung Thought with the development of Marxism-Leninism.In another document(About Internal Developments in China)he exposed the revisionist line being followed by the capitalist roader clique at the time. At the same time he did not spare the other Left Opportunist trends(Enver Hoxha and the R.C.P-U.S.A)that came to the fore under the guise of opposing the Three world Theory and the Deng clique.
Comrade HBS and the Communist revolutionary movement in Punjab faced grave tests for the following years. On the one had, splits in the UC.C.R.IM.L) were followed by a steep decline in the Communist revolutionary and revolutionary democratic mass movement in Punjab. On the other hand the rise of twin monsters of communal fascism and state repression plunged Punjab into a dark night of terror. In this light the now relatively smaller force of the U.C.C.R.I.M.L.)under Comrade HBS’s leadership adopted correct approach to the question of nationalities in India the question of the Punjabi nationality, the phenomenan of Khalistani Communal fascism, and State terrorism. It maintained the sharp edge of struggle against all reactionary form s of terror, and boldly advanced the line of mass –resistance struggle. The combined ideological-political and practical defence of the correct understanding became a rallying point for correctly-oriented Communist revolutionary forces and the revolutionary democratic mass movement in Punjab
Comrade HBS always emphasized that the various Communist revolutionary forces which are today divided into various streams, are components of the party to be re-organised. Thus, even as he stressed the need for struggle against the wrong trends in the camp in order to establish the correct line, he equally stressed the importance of upholding and projecting the unity of the whole communist revolutionary movement against the enemy class.
Equally, in polemical contention, or in post-split situations, he never stooped to personal attacks or trivialization. He used to quote Stalin’s remark that in political matters it is the reverse of military matters: we attack the enemy not at his weakest, but at it’s strongest point.
Comrade HBS played a key role in the formation of the Centre of Communist Revolutionaries of India(C.C.R.I.),a n ALL-India communist revolutionary organization. As part of the Centre of CCRI, Comrdae HBS helped to politically consolidate the existing forces within the organization around the correct trend,and played a major role in the broader unification of Communist Revolutionary forces in the form of the Communist Party Re-Organisation Centre of India-Marxist Leninist)After the Inaugural conference of the C.P.R.C.I(M.L.) in 1995,the newly elected central Committee elected Comrade HBS sa it’s secretary .He remained at this post for 14 years…In the analysis of national and International developments ,he strove strenuously to apply the dialectical materialist method: to examine the material basis of a phenomenan,it’s contradictory aspects, and it’s motion, i.e. the development of these contradictions.
Comrade HBS’S strength was the central importance he gave to Marxist –Leninist ideology.In the analysis of problems of the movement, he struggled constantly to locate the theoretical tasks that needed to be completed and the principal task to be undertaken in order to make a breakthrough in the revolutionary movement. It was on this basis of this theoretical approach that he was able to combat all major deviations that emerged during his revolutionary career.
While reorganization of the Communist Party has remained the principal task before us since the 1970’s,in the recent past Comrade HBS gave special emphasis to the building of the party organization with the perspective of re-organisation of the party as the main task in the present phase of the revolutionary movement of India.
His death is not only a grievous loss to our party organization, but a loss to the entire communist revolutionary camp and the Communist party to be re-organised. Let us pay our homage to HBS by seriously applying ourselves to the study of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tse Tung Thought and to the practice of the Indian Revolution as part of world revolution.
Message from re-organising Committee,Communist League of India.
The ideological guidance provided by him to his organization on various occasions, beginning from the 1970’s upto the 1st decade of the century, will remain inscribed on the historical pages of the Communist revolutionary movement of Punjab-whether this guidance related to the question of diversion from mass revolutionary movement, or to the question of the defence of Marxism-Leninism and conducting the movement under it’s guidance. Immediately after recognizing the ideological deviation of the Communist Party of China after the death of Comrdae Mao,co.Sohi not only raised the banner of defence of the ideology but also kept aloft the banner of the ideology against the deviation, false steps and wrong trends that were revealed from time to time among the communist revolutionary group s of India.
The literary and ideological writings of Sohi were able to inspire the element of consciousness and deep thought in hundreds of Communist in and outside Punjab and his way of illuminating the path of teams guiding communist revolutionary caravans and mass struggles will remain inscribed forever on the historical pages of communist revolutionary movement of Punjab..
He was one of the contingent of guidance –giving soldiers of the Indian Revolution Every moment of his life was dedicated to the Communist Revolutionary movement and he was bent on realizing the dream of revolution in India under the leadership of the working class.
Movements build the persons and in return persons give impetus to the movements. Comrade Sohi was not merely a person, he was the name of a movement. His individual identification was completely united with the movement.
Today, when world capitalism is advancing towards its grave, indications of emergence of widespread workers movements are apparent, and the world is entering a new phase of turmoil, in such a situation a departure of a supporter of the working class movement is a loss which to a considerable extent cannot be filled.Sohi’s loss is not only a loss for the C.P.R.C.I.(M.L.),but a big los for the entire communist revolutionary movement that cannot be filled.
He remained concerned for the unity of the communist revolutionary movement throughout his life and the only appropriate homage to him would be for all of us to persist the goal of building up a single Communist revolutionary party.
Message from Punjab State Committee(C.P.I-Maoist)
The state committee understands that Comrdae Sohi lived and died as a Communist Revolutionary. He always kept aloft the banner of Marxism-Leninsm-Mao Tse Tung Thought (now Maoism)
He characterized India not as an independent country, but as a semi-colonial and semi-feudal country. He projected the new democratic revolution, new democratic politics and its general direction against the revisionist trend of socialist revolution and revolution of nationalities. He upheld the building of a new democratic state of the united front of the for classes based on worker-peasant alliance under the leadership of the working class.
He relied on workers,peasants,youth,students and employees for fulfilling this objective.
The State Committee of the Punjab C.P.I.(Maoist) pays a red salute to Com.Sohi and shares the grief of the party organization-the C.P.R.C.I.(M.L.),the revolutionary communist and democratic forces, and his family, particularly his wife Mohinder Kaur.
We call upon the participant of the homage paying function to transform their grief into anger and to focus their anger and hatred to build a new democratic federal state We call for the raising of the tempo of united struggles,(particularly in Lalgarh) of the uprooted peasantry etc.,against globalization and liberalization etc.
Message from Central Organising Core-Revolutionary Communist League of India
Com.Sohi was the first person in India who recognized the revisionist character of the Deng clique,which usurped state power in China after the death of Mao.
Our movement has always struggled on the questions of left terrorism and the mass line.CoM.Sohi has played an important role in giving practical shape to the mass line.As a result, a clear line of demarcation emerged between the mass line and left terrorism, which was an example to the revolutionary movement in our country. There is deep influence of left terrorism in the revolutionary movement of our country which has caused serious damage to the communist movement of our country.Com.Sohi’s efforts in this direction provide us valuable guidance to overcome this trend. Even till today his teachings combating left adventurism and the building of mass organization s are of relevance.
“He showed the path of confronting counter revolutionary repression, relying on the masses”-Mukhtiar Poohla,editor Lal Parcham(red flag)
Harbhajan wil be known as the builder of Indian revolution”-Surjeet Lee
‘He drew a clear –cut conclusion in the light of ideology and drew a clear cut line of demarcation from revisionism.”
“He was on of those top leaders who most emphatically defended the spirit of Mao Tse Tung and Naxalbari.Not every leader has Com.Sohi’s capacity to swim with firm conviction against the tide of any wrong trend and to rebuild the scattered organization bit by bit.-Jaspal Jassi,editor Surkh Rekha
He had the quality of addressing any crisis with deep self confidence. In personal relations he always conducted himself on equal footing. Our personal relationship was that of equality. I got strength from his views,I wish that his caravan may flourish.—Mohinder Kaur(wife of Com.Sohi)
Above are the messages presented at the homage paying function for Comrade HBS on June 26th 2009.2500 people participated and the function began with the garlanding of the photograph of Com.Sohi.
In his document “To Play or not play the Parliamentary Game’.HBS most dialectically dissected all the relative aspects on deploying participation in parliamentary election as a tactic.He narrated examples of how electoral tactics paved the way for the emergence of fascism in nations like Chile and Indonesia or even Sri Lanka.He elaborated how toady the revolutionary party was fragmented which was an obstacle to utilising the parliament. He reflected how in Latin America the revolutionary movements received a 360 degree reversal l when they combined the tactic sod armed movements with electoral participation.HBS narrated how the Communist party in India had no unified existence.
‘TO PLAY OR NOT PLAY THE PARLIAMENTARY GAME
“At a time when the reactionary ruling classes in a bourgeois democratic country are on the path of suppressing and dissipating the democratic processes, and when the importance of struggle for bourgeois democratic instituting increases ,it is appropriate for Communists to join the election campaign along with democratically minded people..and expose the anti-democratic character of the ruling class. But this role becomes possible and meaningful only when bourgeois democracy has a social base . In underdeveloped countries of Asia, Latin America and Africa bourgeois democracy has no social base, and there is no possibility of Stern bourgeois type democracy emerging.
“Using the parliamentary game and elections for buying time is a tricky issue. For drawing a demarcating line between buying time and coming prey to opportunism and then keeping a continuous vigil regarding the demarcation is a very strenuous job. A revolutionary organisation has to traverse very difficult terrain before ultimately achieving success in the hazardous game. Under unfavourable conditions, when the decisive force in the field happen s to be the enemy, and not the Communist Revolutionaries, when the linkage of the revolutionaries with the people is not effective and strong enough, the priority of the Communist Revolutionaries is to preserve their existence and gather forces. In such a situation the revolutionary organisation has to change its external appearance, its work style as well as its slogans, in order to change the unfavourable situation into a favourable situation through cautious and diligent endeavour.”
“The question of utilising the defensive tactic of participating in parliamentary institutions for the sake of buying time as an effective tactic, is not an immediate concern., it nevertheless deserves a passing reference The question concerns the stage at which a revolutionary party has established red power. in a considerable portion of the country through the ongoing peoples war ,under it’s leadership, and the enemy may not be in a position to destroy it. However, it may not be either easy or immediately possible for us to wipe out the enemy. Under special circumstances, basing on people’s armed struggle talking of the strength of people of liberated areas, and taking other and democratic and patriotic sections along, adopting the tactics of temporararily joining the coalition government for the sake of consolidating revolutionary strength and further accentuating the crisis and disunity among the enemy, cannot be absolutely ruled out. However this is a double edged sword. The enemy may also utilise it successfuly.It may too adopt the tactic of temporarily aligning with the revolutionaries in forming a coalition govt. In order to erode the independent armed forces. of the revolutionaries, regroup reactionary forces ,and after negotiating a difficult stretch, annul the common agreement at some opportune movement, and launch a fatal attack on the revolutionary forces. Basing on it’s independent armed force and revolutionary vigilance, the revolutionary leadership can foil this and come out stronger. The liberation struggle in Laos and Vietnam is a testimony to this.”
“At any rate, here we are considering the preliminary period ,in which organisations are yet to organise the peoples war, When we glance across the political situation in the country, what comes inti view is the subjective aspect of the Indian revolution is very weak. The Communist movement is passing through a political-organisational crisis.. It is not only that the Communist party is scattered and fragmented under the impact of ideological strain, but that the forces of the Communist revolutionary camp ,owing allegiance to the communist revolutionaries ideology ,are scattered and become in ineffective. The situation cannot be compared with the Communist party at rudimentary stage.”
“Election Boycott is a call to masses for specific activity.The slogan should be given “1.When the Revolutionary movement is on an ascendancy.
Political slogans are evoking a powerful response from the masses
Parliamentaray sytem has been renderd ineffective or irrelevant.
The alternative form of struggle for the expression and implementation of people’s will is available,
In our understanding such condition sdo not exist in Punjab today. Today conditions do not exists fort tactics of Boycott or participating in elections.
IMPORTANT WRITINGS OF COMRADE HBS
A document of great importance was ‘The Significance of Combating International Opportunism of th Teng-Hua brand.” Written in October 1980.With great mastery of dialectical materialism he analysed how China was shaping into a capitalist society which today has proved absolutely correct. In the deepest depth HBS exposed the hypocrisy of Chin being a Socialist Society..Most dialectically with perfect application of Marxist-Leninst ideology he has exposed the revisionist essence of the Dengist regime,summarising the twists and turns.
‘SIGNIFICANCE OF COMBATING INTERNATIONAL OPPORTUNISM OF THE TENG –HUA BRAND’
‘Socialist China has changed colour. A counter revolutionary revisionist gang has seized leadership of the CPC and state power from the hands of the proletarian revolutionaries by puling off a military coup. For a time being the proletarian revolutionary line and forces associated with Moa Tse Tung have suffered defeat. The renegade Teng-Hua leading clique of CPC which now rules China has clamped a bourgeois dictatorship over the broad masses of the Chinese people. The revisionist rulers of China are now set upon a course of systematically demolishing all the achievements of Socialist Revolution of China and restoring capitalism there in the name of accomplishing ‘The Four Modernisations.”
‘The counter revolutionary course adopted by them in running the domestic affairs of China has found expression in their line and conduct at international level. Having discarded the path of Socialist development ,of self –reliance ,they hanker after finance capital, sophisticated technology and expertise of imperialist countries in order to rush along the bankrupt path of capitalist development. To propitiate the lords of international monopoly capital for this purpose, they have made their political, economic and ideological offerings.
Politically they strive to paint the ugly face of Western Imperialism, and its leader US Imperialist superpower, in agreeable colours to save it, and its various lackey reactionary regimes, from the wrath of the workers and oppressed peoples of the world. Also they lend the political and military weight of China in favour of Western Imperialism and its lackey reactionary forces worldwide to supplement the prowess of US Imperialist superpower in its harp contention with the rival superpower, for world domination.
Economically, they are giving a shot in the arm of crisis ridden international monopoly capitalism by laying bare to its rapacious tentacles the labour power, natural resources and vast market in China.
Ideologically, they serve world imperialist system the way none of it’s instruments ther than opportunism can serve. And that is by caricaturing Marxism-Leninism-Moa thought and sowing confusion and dissension in the International Communist Movement-the reliable ideological and organisational weapons of International proletariat,-so as to corrupt the revolutionary consciousness of the revolutionary proletariat and enfeeble its revolutionary blow directed against the decadent world imperialist system They try to displace proletarian internationalism with bourgeois national chauvinism which they practice themselves and encouraging others to do so. They promote economism in order to derail the global struggle for revolutionary transformation. They try to displace the Leninist conception of proletarian revolutionary tactics with bourgeois pragmatism free of all constraints of principle, so as to justify all acts of class collaboration in the name of ‘tactics,.’
Thus Socialist China, a great fortress of world proletarian revolution. Today stands transformed into a citadel of neo-revisionism. A Centre hostile to world revolution.
This grave development has serious international repercussions. Remaining true to proletarian internationalist outlook, we, in India, cannot afford to adopt an attitude of unconcern or casualness towards this development. It has a profound bearing on the development of our organisation and revolutionary mass movement.
Opportunism may assume particular expression in a given country which demands a corresponding treatment at the hands of Marxist-Leninist situated there, its content and role are the same everywhere. On account of this, every local opportunist trend gets nourishment from International Opportunism. That is why; opportunism can effectively be combated only through concerted attack all along the front, locally as well as internationally. The practice of consistent struggle against local opportunist trends quips Marxist Leninist forces for discerning the concrete thrust of opportunism of any hue that comes to the fore at international level. On the other hand, the process of uncompromising struggle against the latter brings out the latent opportunist and vacillating tendencies within the ranks of the Marxist Leninists.
The tendency to avoid bold confrontation with international opportunism is a pointer to the sagging revolutionary will of Marxist Leninist forces who exhibit it, and it works towards undermining the very proletarian revolutionary character of the Concerned organisation. Because, an organisation that succumbs to the tendency would not only be turning back to the obligations of proletarian internationalism but also paving the ground for opportunism to flourish within its bosom, an ultimately, take it over. This is how the tendency itself happen sto be an opportunist tendency.
One of the factors responsible for assisting a well-meaning Marxist Leninist section or Organisation is falling prey to this opportunist trend is a wrong notion entertained by the leadership, concerning the method of struggle against opportunism. The leadership relies on a subjective assumption for justifying its course that it will be able to prevent the organisation being overwhelmed by International Opportunism, even without taking a clear cut stand against the latter, that is, without involving and ideologically arming its ranks up to the primary level.
An effective struggle against opportunism requires not only the involvement of the rank and file of the Organisation but, still more, of the revolutionary masses of the people led by it. This requirement cannot be fulfilled unless the Organisation comes out openly and boldly against opportunism and its chief protagonist in a particular period.
Following the footsteps of the predecessors, the opportunist leaders of many communist revolutionary groups of India are now waving, in the same way, the rusty weapon of fake proletarian internationalism and accusation of being anti-China to cause vacillation among the Marxist Leninist ranks in relation to Teng-Hua opportunism.
Like their opportunist predecessors, they also trumpet fake proletarian internationalism in order to cover up their retreat from real proletarian internationalism. Real proletarian internationalism prompts us to denounce and oppose Soviet invasion and occupation of Afghanistan as well as Vietnamese invasion and occupation of Kampuchean peoples, while the fake proletarian internationalism prompts the revisionist bosses of C.P.I and CPM to hail the Soviet and Vietnamese agressors and denounce the just struggles of the Afghan and Kampuchean peoples as ‘bandit activities ‘of the reactionary forces aided and abetted by Western Imperialism and China.
Again real proletarian internationalism would prompt us to hail the anti-fascist and anti imperialist struggles of the Iranian people, and denounce the despotic lackey regime of the Shah, and its patron US Imperialism as well as the renegade Hua Kuofeng who rushed to Iran to boost up the sagging morale and image of Shah’s regime in the thick of the massacre of insurgent Iranian patriots. On the contrary fake proletarian internationalism of the Opportunist leadership of many Communist Revolutionary groups of India would prompt them to hail Hua’s trip to Iran as further demonstration of China’s unflinching support to third world regimes in distress, and opposition to the sinister moves of the more dangerous superpower to displace the declining superpower by means of fomenting disturbances in the later spheres of influence. And they would secretly wish the subsiding of Iranian turbulences lest Soviet social Imperialism should fish in the waters of the Persian Gulf.
Similarly real proletarian Internationalism would prompt us to denounce Sadat’s brazen betrayal of the cause of Arab people’s ,especially the Palestinian people struggling against the aggressor Zionist state of Israel and his shameful grovelling before the arch-Zionist Menachem Begin .On the other hand, the fake proletarian internationalism of these opportunist leaders would prompt them to hail Sadat’s camp David peace initiative as marking the ascendance of forces of independence and peace in Egypt and a welcome setback to the hegemonic plans of Soviet Social Imperialism in the Middle East.
Similar instances can be available in abundance, at home and abroad, which would invariably show the opportunists of various hues ranged along with one or the other superpower and its reactionary lackeys, against the Marxist-Leninists, proletarian and national revolutionary masses. And everywhere they will be found camouflaging their desertion to the enemy with the flag of proletarian internationalism.
Hence the Marxist Leninists of India, must treat all talk of proletarian Internationalism, unaccompanied by a staunch struggle against international opportunism as sheer humbug.
At this juncture, the international Opportunism headed by the renegade Teng-Hua leading clique of the C.P.C. has come to the fore as the principal target of the ideological offensive of International Marxist Leninist Movement. Those parties and groups, who do not distinguish from Teng Hua opportunism, lose their claim to be treated as Marxist Leninist Organisations. Neverthless,a distinction should be made between ardent supporters of the Deng-Hua clique like the renegade SN Singh clique of the C.P.I.(M.L.) and certain other Marxist Leninist forces who are still vacciliating Efforts should be made to bring the latter into the fold through ideological struggle. At the same time, mere denunciation of Teng-Hua opportunism should not be deemed enough for considering a party or Group to be Marxist Leninst.
Organisations exist within the revolutionary camp that denounce Teng-Hua opportunism, but camouflage the essence of their left sectarian or adventurist character. The most predominant examples are the ‘Massline’ group which later became the Central Re-Organisation Commiteee,and the Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) .The Massline group supported Charu Mazumdar’s line of ‘Annihilation of the class Enemy”at the very core while the Comunist part of Canada ascribed to supporting Enver Hoxha and rejecting Mao thought.
We should distinguish in the manner we treat such trends. The one that openly wages a war against the revolutionary practice and theory of Mao Tse Tung should be openly defeated and refuted, while the other should be subjected to a patient ideological criticism with a view to bring back healthy sections into the fold.
In order to accomplish our present main ideological task of thoroughly exposing and vanquishing International Opportunism of Teng-Hua brand, upholding Mao Tse Tung as an integral part of Marxism-Leninsm,and deepening our grasp of the theory and practice of Proletarian Revolution in all stages of development, we must delve deep into the mode of manifestation of Chinese Revisionism under the condition sof the dictatorship of the proletariat,and the causes underlying its temporay triumph over the Marxist-Leninist forces and reared and trained by Moa Tse Tung, the great Marxist teacher of our time.
Below are excerpts of the document written by Comrade HBS on International line.in 1996.There have been few documents ever written by Comrades on International line with more dialectical materialist mastery or Leninist precision. Most comprehensively he analyses the phenomena of Inter imperialist contention and revolutionary struggles and the various obstacles confronting the International Communist Movement. In detail it elaborates how revisionism has to be confronted at the very root and the factors that are favourable and unfavourable for the red torch of revolution to simmer the globe. It brilliantly portrays the chink in the armour of imperialism. .Brilliant assessment of strength and weaknesses of subjective forces. It gives great positivity and encouragement to crystallisation of revolutionary movements.
RESOUTION ON INTERNATIONAL LINE OF THE CPRCI (ML
Specific circumstances in favour of communist revolutionaries
In the period ahead, two specific circumstances are working worldwide in favour of communist revolutionary forces.
Turbulence will intensify: First, the turbulence among world peoples suffering and struggling against the political economic onslaught f imperialism transferring the burden of its crisis on to the people primarily of the third world countries. The spontaneous popular rage and unsettlement in the third world has not yet achieved its full potential through being systematically directed against imperialism’s lackey regimes in these countries. As the phase of collusion among the major imperialist powers yields to the usual state of overt and intensified inter-imperialist contention, this turbulence gets greater scope to express itself, and the proletarian revolutionary forces scope to manoeuvre among enemy forces.
Moreover, as military contention and aggression by imperialist powers comemore and more into play, the turbulence increasingly tends to take an anti-imperialist form, turning into nationalist rallying under military aggression by imperialist powers.
This turbulence would yield its full anti-imperialist potential and acquire revolutionary democratic direction provided it comes under the leadership or general influence of the Communist Party. Proletarian revolutionary forces have to work to guide the people’s turbulent forces into a revolutionary democratic movement. They have to grasp the thrusting power of popular turbulence replete with opportunities as well as dangers; anticipate the phase of open inter-imperialist contention in this period of acute systemic crisis for imperialism; and politically consolidate people’s struggles into a concentrated planned movement by (i) bringing under their own influence those they can and (ii) projecting others in the public in the proper perspective. In doing so they should take steps to project both kinds across regions and revolutionary classes.
Crumbling of revisionist worldwide network: The second favourable circumstance for communist revolutionaries in the present situations the crumbling of the worldwide network of revisionism and revisionist parties, following the collapse of Soviet social imperialism, their mainstay. This circumstance removes that treacherous political alternative which pretends to communist heritage and contests with genuine communist forces in each country for the political affiliation of active elements and masses of toiling people.
The toiling people by their class nature need the revolutionary alternative. Instead, in the past four decades, they have been ideologically disarmed and rendered politically ineffective by local revisionist readerships acting as lackeys of social imperialism and State revisionism. The collapse of Soviet social imperialism and its renouncing of communism is thus a deadly blow to the support structure of world revisionism.
It is not a positive blow as was the ideological death blow dealt by the Great Debate in the 1960s. But it does make a major material and psychological impact in favour of Marxist Leninists: it forces the revisionist parties to expose their true class-collaborationist colours. Driven now to seek subsistence and favours from the local ruling classes and their imperialist masters, these parties have to drop their pretensions to revolution, class rule and scientific socialism. Bereft of their ideological propaganda baggage, they necessarily become social democratic parties and groups.
Of course, revisionism as an inimical ideological trend will continue coexist within the communist revolutionary camp; but denied external support-structure its challenge can henceforth be met more effectively within the communist revolutionary frame. (With the collapse of Soviet social imperialism, Western imperialist powers may have triumphantly rid themselves of an ideological-political threat from within the imperialist camp. But, in the process, they have released the potential association of billions of toiling masses for revolutionary action and made it necessary for healthy political elements misled into the revisionist camp to seek out revolutionary politics and the proletarian revolutionary forces organised around it.)
Imperialism unable to disentangle itself from crisis: resistance at home and abroad
No doubt imperialism remains as a State system worldwide. But it is at this juncture also hopelessly on the decline–not only in that as a system it is incapable of managing the productive forces its mode has unleashed, but in that it has run out of steam even for reform and revisionism. Every attempt imperialism makes to disentangle itself from its crisis, and to manage it sinter-imperialist contention in the interests of resolving that crisis, entangles it further still in the negative threads of that attempt.
This is so whether in relation to imperialism’s national economies wheret he State and finance capital are making deep cuts into the established economic claims and social security of the working people, or in relation to the third world economies where via their lackey regimes imperialists are imposing most monstrous terms of exploitation on the vast masses of people. Thus, in the imperialist countries, people have been hitting back with organised resistance, and in the oppressed countries growing popular turbulence is the rule, more organised or less so according to each country’s specific history and situation.
It is the revolutionary possibilities and power of the turbulence unleashed by the operation of this principal contradiction (between imperialism and the oppressed peoples), aided by growing unrest in imperialist countries manifesting the other fundamental contradiction (between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat in those countries) that the progressive proletarian forces need to grasp.
Communist revolutionaries have stood their ground
Both the general features and specific circumstances in the objective situation thus give communists ample scope for revolutionary activity and revolutionary optimism.
The record of communist forces worldwide, too, in the period following the fall of Red China, offers ground for optimism. Communist revolutionaries have faced major challenges to their basic revolutionary line and organisation. They have struggled hard and not capitulated. And they have defended their organisation in the face of fierce repression and enemy attacks. The turbulence of world people and the exposure of the revisionist forces are in the present situation specific advantages for them.
However, after recognising all this, it is important to realise that the many important problems that the communist revolutionaries have been grappling with all through this period are persisting. In the final analysis, these are of an ideological-political nature–whether pertaining to the arena of the revolutionary movement, or of the party organisation, or of the application of theory to comprehend complexity of the present situation, or of proletarian revolutionary shaping themselves to meet the present challenges. And their concentrated expression lies in the inability of communist revolutionaries in most countries to consummate the process of Party reorganisation in their own country. It is this which has a crucial bearing in bridging the gap that exists today between the demands of the objective revolutionary situation and the state of the subjective forces. This is an unusual gap. And its acuteness is brought to the fore in a world situation that is developing fast and becoming more complex.
Certain specific tasks, vis-a-vis revisionism and within the camp, in the present situation
In fulfilling their tasks flowing from this overall situation, communist revolutionary forces worldwide need to steadfastly uphold their ideological-political heritage (as basically summed up by the Great Debate)which has been further validated by recent developments. They need to press on determinedly with the implementation of the revolutionary line for their respective countries. These will be the basic steps they can take towards fulfilling their responsibilities as leading contingents of the international proletariat. Their specific tasks in the present situation are as follows.
(i) With the collapse and political exposure of revisionist state system and international network, sections of the old parties and activists around them have been seeking the correct revolutionary understanding and organisational contact. It is important to recognise the significance of this phenomenon. Without loosening the ideological frame of the communist revolutionary line, but maintaining flexibility in handling, it is necessary to approach these forces with a view to carrying them in the correct direction. In this conscious process, communists will have to interact with these forces to sort out and win over the genuine cadres and activists, and demarcate from those who show no sign of fundamental rethinking on revolutionary lines.
(ii) Communists need to remember, however, that while the international revisionist network is being dismantled and internationally organised revisionisms a spent force, revisionism as an ideological trend remains a main danger to communism though its form is now different. The basic content of revisionism now appears mainly in the form of opening up settled questions and issues. These are posed as if to give self-critical answers. However, these questions are posed incorrectly, close to the way the imperialists are posing them to confuse and demoralise the world communist following. The fight with revisionism is thus no less tough within the camp. (One such debate concerns the collapse of the Soviet social-imperialist superpower, posed as a problem of socialism; whereas, it is an established fact in the communist revolutionary camp that this superpower was imperialist, that it was among the main enemies of world people, that it developed after the return of capitalism in the Soviet Union, and that its collapse pertains to the problems faced by imperialist powers and the crisis of imperialism in general and social-imperialism in particular.) Combating this new form of revisionism, through a systematic ideological- political exposure of what is in fact being done under cover of concern for communist rethinking on questions, is an important and continuing task.
(iii) Imperialism has always strained to demoralise the advanced sections in the world revolutionary movement. One way it does this is to falsely project “failures” of socialism, to project socialism as an inhuman and inefficient system. Now it is trying to project the advantage to the U.S. superpower due to the collapse of the other, Soviet, superpower as a victory of the capitalist system over the socialist, as if imperialism is now stronger. Whereas the fact is that social-imperialism’s collapse is a positive circumstance for the development of world revolution and a landmark in the progressive crisis of imperialism and its decline. Fighting such false pessimism steadfastly, with correct and truthful projections of world events, is a continuing task for communist forces worldwide. It is part of the fight against imperialism. It is necessary to properly handle such falsely grounded pessimism too when it enters as a wrong understanding within communist organisation.
(iv) Within the communist movement, there normally exists a tendency among some sections towards wrong thinking and wrong practice. If consolidated this exists as a deviation or a wrong line. Educating against wrong thinking and practice, and conducting relentless struggle against a deviation or wrung line while trying to win over the genuine cadre who can be rectified is the normal practice of communists. Today there is a severe and sustained attack against communists in the international arena. There is a concerted drive by the imperialist powers to marginalise communists in the public mind worldwide. In these circumstances, and especially in view of the concerns of the struggling masses, it is imperative that we take particular care to join forces against the enemy and to deal with other sections of the camp as fraternal forces (barring those sections from whom we wish to make a clear demarcation ideologically-politically, as belonging outside the communist camp). We should make the form of the public debate such that it goes before the masses as concretely posed issues and fraternal exchanges comprehensible as differences among basically like-minded forces who are committed to promote the interests of the broad mass of people and the glorious cause of revolutionaries.
(v) With communist organisations and parties of other countries, similarly, it is necessary when the enemy is attempting to isolate and fragment the world communist movement, to make special efforts to institute suitable forms f contact, communication, and exchanges internationally, so that a basis is laid for a process of proletarian international coming together ideologically and in political solidarity. It is necessary today, more than ever, to identify with struggles of the oppressed people worldwide, particularly struggles led by communists in other countries, to support them, and to project them in the course of revolutionary activity.
(vi) To do all this, communist revolutionaries have to apply themselves with singular zeal to consummate the process of Party reorganisation by developing the basis and creating the conditions for it.
Harsh Thakor is a freelance journalist who has travelled around India and written on blogs like ‘Democracy ad Class Struggle’, ‘Ottos War Room’ and ‘Frontier Weekly.’ Mainly written on politics of mass line in Communist Movement , Maoism, peasant struggles but also on blogs on Cricket and films. Email- firstname.lastname@example.org