Friday, February 16, 2018

Nepal: Primitive to Modern Communism by Jason W Smith plus Kiran on Prachanda's Revisionism

Democracy and Class Struggle publish this lecture by Jason Smith as a backgrounder to Nepalese Communism - it does not analyse Bhattarai's and Prachanda's revisionism therefore we find it necessary to add an extract from Kiran on the October Revolution and a link to an article by Basanta to clear any confusion about Prachanda's politics. 


After the death of Mao, many communist parties and organisations of the world pushed revolution and tasks of the communist movement ahead in keeping with the given situation.

The Revolutionary Internationalist Movement (RIM) was constituted in this course.

The process of People‘s war in the countries including Peru, Philippines, India and Nepal continued advancing. These events created a new hope and encouragement.

However, the revolution and the communist movement suffered another setback.

The people‘s war in Peru reached almost to extinction.

A part of leadership, Prachanda and Baburam, severely betrayed revolution in Nepal. 

Bob Avakian from the USA followed the path of deviation other than MarxismLeninism-Maoism. 

The RIM reached almost to a defunct condition.

At present, the international communist movement is mainly divided into two streams. They are: right revisionist stream and the revolutionary stream.

The right revisionists, following the path of class collaborationism, parliamentarianism and cabinetism as opposed to class struggle, dictatorship of the proletariat and the theory of violence and becoming agents of imperialism, have joined the reactionary rank and state power.

Their utterance of Marxism and Communism is merely to hold an advertisement and a hoarding board to deceive the people. Contrary to this, the revolutionary stream in the world is also advancing facing many complexities.

The process of people‘s war and new democratic revolution is advancing in many countries including Philippines and India.After the dissolution of socialism and restoration of capitalism in the countries including Russia, the apologists of imperialism and reactionaries have been forcefully creating noise that Communism is dead and the bourgeois democracy has been without alternative.

However, the fact is not that, the globalised imperialism has been entangled in serious crisis, the liberalism to which they claimed to be without alternative has completely failed and the proponents of liberalism have now started favouring protectionism.

The imperialism is getting destroyed in itself. The synthesis reached by Marx that though the Paris Commune has been destroyed, its principles are eternal and they will appear time and again till the oppressed classes are liberated is a scientific truth.

Though the socialist countries have suffered counter-revolution, the principles of October Revolution, like the principles of Paris Commune, will remain immortal and they will appear time and again until the world proletariat and the broad masses of the people are liberated. The birth of the Communism is inevitable.

Lesson from history and our task

In studying October Revolution and Leninism, on the one hand, we must learn from history, and on the other, we must pay attention to our task. In regard to this, the important questions we need to seriously keep in mind are as follows:

First: Dialectics of revolution :The revolution advances dialectically ahead, not in a straight but in a zigzag line, amid rise and fall. According to Lenin, one of the laws of revolution is that the defeated exploiter class firmly resists for long keeping all of its things at risk. After one‘s state power has been destroyed and the heaven of plunder has been snatched, he furiously, emotionally and passionately engages in restoring the lost power. Lenin says,

The transition from capitalism to communism takes an entire historical epoch. Until this epoch is over, the exploiters inevitably cherish the hope of restoration, and this hope turns into attempts at restoration.?14 From this assertion by Lenin a conclusion can be drawn that the possibility of counter-revolution always exists and a historical era is required for the final victory of proletarian revolution.

Second: Petty-bourgeois attitude: Petty-bourgeois attitude always vacillates. The petty-bourgeoisie swing towards revolution when it approaches victory and swing towards counter-revolution when it is defeated. Lenin says, "In the train of the capitalist exploiters follow the wide sections of the petty bourgeoisie, with regard to whom decades of historical experience of all countries testify that they vacillate and hesitate, one day marching behind the proletariat and the next day taking fright at the difficulties of the revolution; that they become panic-stricken at the first defeat or semidefeat of the workers, grow nervous, run about aimlessly, snivel,nd rush from one camp into the other -?just like our Mensheviks and Socialist- Revolutionaries."15These assertions by Lenin apply well in the context of today‘s world and Nepal as well.

Third: The whim of becoming a so-called new: There seems a whim of becoming new in the world and Nepalese communist movement. The utterances like the propositions of Marx, Lenin and Mao have lagged behind, one must not stick to the old and the theory should be creatively developed seem to have been presented in an attractive way. The old path, conservatism and dogmatism are opposed but that new and creativity have ultimately gone to serve the reaction.

If we talk of Nepal, the erstwhile CPN UML and the present Prachanda and Baburam, in their whim to become new, have degenerated into reaction.

We must firmly oppose the old path, conservatism and dogmatism to make revolution; however that opposition must not be from the empiricist, right revisionist and reactionary perspective but from Marxist one.

Great Lenin had vehemently opposed dogmatism and empiricism in the course of developing theory and the angle of his opposition was Marxist.

Fourth: Democratic republic and cabinetism: Till the whole twentieth century and the initial period of the twenty first century, the spectre of democratic republic and cabinetism caused to frighten the ICM. And it is frightening now in Nepal very much.

The communists had accepted democratic republic during a period of struggle against feudalism, nevertheless after capitalism changed into imperialism and reaction they opposed it.

Lenin put forward a slogan of the Soviet Republic against democratic republic.

The democratic republic is the main form of old democratic revolution and the bourgeois parliamentarian system. After the First World War and the Russian October Revolution, the era of democratic republic= and bourgeois parliamentarian republic ended, and the era of proletarian socialist revolution begun.

The democratic revolution that is accomplished in the underdeveloped countries became a part of socialist revolution. Let it be remembered, Mao has explicitly clarified it in his article headed On new democracy.?

Nevertheless, what is strange is that those who want others to call them communist shamelessly say that the establishment of democratic republic is the beginning of new chapter of new era.

What more theoretical and political degeneration can be other than this?

So far as the question of cabinetism is concerned, it has dangerously appeared in Nepal before us. Lenin says, The petty-bourgeois democrats, those sham socialists who replaced the class struggle by dreams of class harmony, even pictured the socialist transformation in a dreamy fashion—not as the overthrow of the rule of the exploiting class, but as the peaceful submission of the minority to the majority which has become aware of its aims.

This petty-bourgeois utopia, which is inseparable from the idea of the state being above classes, led in practice to the betrayal of the interests of the working classes, as was shown,for example, by the history of the French revolutions of 1848 and 1871, and by the experience of socialist? participation in bourgeois Cabinets in Britain, France, Italy and other countries at the turn of the century.16

After the February revolution in Russia, the social democrats and Mensheviks had joined the reactionary bourgeois cabinet and Lenin had termed them agent, pawn and puppet of the bourgeoisie.

Yes, same type of new puppets is emerging now in Nepal in the name of communists.

Fifth: Preparation of revolution: The revolutions that were carried out in 1905, 1917 February and October in Russia were the consequences of planned theoretical, political, organisational and military preparation made by Lenin. In this context, Lenin had carried out ruthless ideological struggle against spontaneity, legal Marxism, economism, liquidationism, Menshevikism and cabinetism and on the other, he had deeply studied and synthesised the questions including degeneration of capitalism into imperialism, imperialism and war and the relation between imperialism and opportunism.

We must learn well on the preparation of revolution from Lenin and we must very much responsibly carry on the task of revolution that goes ahead from new democracy to socialism and communism.

Sixth:The question of organising communist international: The establishment of the  communist international is an urgent necessity for the world proletarian revolution to advance. Lenin had played important role on this question after Marx and Engels.

He had carried out preparation of the Third International around the First World War by waging ideological struggle against right revisionism present in the Second International and organised the Third International right after the October socialist revolution. At the time of the Second World War the Third International was dissolved and later Cominform was organised. It did not work after the demise of Stalin. Mao did not have opportunity to organise new international.

Various efforts have been done to organise communist international after Mao.

Now the ICM is divided in various streams. At present, learning from Lenin and waging ideological struggle against right opportunism present in the ICM, a concrete initiative to organise the communist international is necessary to take up.


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