Red May Day 1997 Thunder Around the World!
Statement by the Committee
of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement
May First — the traditional day when the international
proletariat thunders its political manifesto
against the imperialist and reactionary classes all over
the world and reaffirms its unshaking determination to violently
overthrow the oppressive rule of these bloodsuckers
everywhere on earth and build a new society, free of exploitation
and oppression. On this day revolutionary proletarians join in streets,
neighbourhoods, factories and base areas of revolutionary armed
struggle to once again reaffirm their world historic mission and
call upon all oppressed to join in this liberating life-and-death
struggle. On this day, the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement
(RIM) calls upon all revolutionary communists around the world to
carry forward a red May Day which powerfully and unambiguously conveys
this message — in contrast to all the reformist views, which
in one form or another counsel the proletariat and oppressed to
make peace with class exploitation.
Across five continents, our class and the rest of the labouring
classes produce all the food and wealth on the earth. But while
enormous resources are accumulated in the hands of the exploiting
classes, poverty and hunger grow among the producers. The increasing
number of electronic gadgets cannot hide the fact that never in
the history of the earth has there been greater inequality. The
imperialist ruling classes of a handful of rich capitalist countries
dominate whole nations and peoples in Asia, Africa and Latin America
and, together with local big capitalists and landlords, seek to
suck ever more blood-soaked profits out of the labouring people.
And while some sections of the middle classes in developing countries
may enjoy fleeting prosperity, others from among these same classes
are cast unceremoniously to the bottom of society. Even in the citadels
of imperialism itself, millions lack basic necessities and millions
more see their standard of living driven downward. In the former
East bloc countries, the same old ruling elite (like Yeltsin) dropped
their previous hollow profession of “communism” (actually
revisionism). They have changed uniforms, while retaining their
capitalist soul, and become “market-oriented democrats”.
They have accumulated mind-boggling wealth, while tens of millions
have been thrown out of factories and off the land.
Tremendous technological advances have been built upon the labour
of the proletariat and the accumulated knowledge of mankind. But
in the hands of the imperialists, these advances are transformed
into private “intellectual property” and used as one
more link in their system of modern-day slavery. The capitalists
turn every technological advance into a man-eating horror, kicking
people out of work and onto the streets, sucking further wealth
out of the oppressed nations and increasing the gap between the
backward and rich countries.
This is not all. The Cold War between the Western imperialists
and their East bloc counterparts is over, but the aftershocks of
their beast-like rivalry for world domination are still taking victims
from amongst the masses. While the crumbling of their Cold War set-up
is still a cause of instability and suffering for the masses of
many countries in Africa and Eastern Europe, newly intensifying
contention among the Western imperialist powers is adding salt to
the wounds. Imperialism is indirectly and often directly responsible
for the killings and horrendous human suffering in Rwanda, Afghanistan,
Bosnia and elsewhere. Then the imperialists use these situations
as justification to send their reactionary armies and use reactionary
violence to establish order and so-called human rights (the most
important right for them is their “right” to exploit
the masses). The imperialists̓ actions are not aimed at saving
the Kurds from Saddam Hussein or the Bosnian Muslims from Serb fascist
rapists and killers or the Tutsis from Hutu warlords. Their only
concern is to keep their shaky empires together. They use their
guns to dominate and exploit the oppressed peoples. Every big-time
reactionary in the oppressed countries has been their faithful servant
for decades, including the now tottering Mobutu of Zaire. Every
killer party from Africa to Afghanistan is financed, armed and politically
advised by the US, European (France, Germany, Belgium, etc.) or
Russian imperialists individually or together. Political forces
who beg the imperialists to provide a solution to the many crises
in the world are either deliberately hiding the truth or fooling
The world situation today and the repeated outbreaks of crisis
cry out for a clear revolutionary vision that is boldly and persistently
implemented. Oppression is giving rise to many forms of resistance
and protest by the masses around the world. The majority of them
desperately need change. Leading these masses away from illusory
roads and obsolete ideologies and onto the liberating path of proletarian
revolution is the tremendous challenge facing revolutionary Maoists
throughout the world.
History has shown that only a proletarian revolution can bring
the masses the power to control their human and other resources
in the service of building a new world free of all oppression. This
was powerfully shown by our class in waging revolution and building
socialism in the USSR (1917-1956) and China (1949-1976). The fact
that capitalism was restored in those countries cannot wipe out
this profound truth and historical reality. These historic experiences
have shown that the proletariat and the masses, having established
their power by revolutionary means, can make giant strides in eliminating
the relations of oppression and exploitation established over thousands
of years and the reactionary and stultifying ideas which correspond
to those relations. Today the proletariat does not hold state power
in any country. But these tremendous historical achievements are
exactly the ground we must build on to carry to victory new proletarian
revolutions in various parts of the world, and to build new socialist
societies on even higher levels. There is no other way to liberation.
This truth must be brought home to more and more proletarian masses.
History has also shown the bankruptcy of other views claiming
to change the world: religious obscurantism, nationalism, reformism
and imperialist “democracy”. We have seen how the Islamic
forces in Iran immediately after the fall of the Shah turned against
the masses and drowned their revolution in blood. We see now how
the Islamic forces in Afghanistan have allied withUS imperialism
and other reactionary powers to enslave the masses there. We have
seen in the past few years how the introduction of Western market
reforms in the former East bloc countries has only intensified the
suffering of the masses and how the much-heralded electoral democracy
has not empowered them a bit. We have seen how the imperialist-sponsored
reforms in South Africa have been nothing but the “changing
of the guard” of the oppressive system, while the black masses,
the great majority, are yet to be liberated. We see before our eyes
how the imperialist “peace process” in the Middle East
is being built on the basis of betraying the Palestinian masses
and their national aspirations. Nor can ex-rebels turned Western
(or market) oriented “democrats” take us to liberation.
All of these false prophets can only lead the masses back to the
same misery. Even the few states which today are out of favour with
one or another imperialist power do not express the political interests
of the proletariat.
In contrast to all these reactionary and reformist views of “improving”
the world while leaving its basic class distinctions in place stand
the revolutions waged or being prepared by the proletariat and its
Marxist-Leninist-Maoist parties. People̓s wars are being carried
out in Peru led by the Communist Party of Peru and in Nepal led
by the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) — both participating
parties in RIM. Also, revolutionary armed struggles are being waged
by other Maoist forces, such as in the Philippines and in India.
Although the revolutionary struggle led by MLM parties and organizations
does not yet occupy the centre of the political scene internationally,
these struggles are the sharpest expressions of the interests of
our class. They are the early birds of future waves of class struggle.
In the face of vicious attacks by the reactionary US-backed Fujimori
regime, the People̓s War in Peru has carried on, and the Communist
Party of Peru has remained steadfast in the face of a right opportunist
line which raised its head inside the Party, proposing to surrender
the People̓s War. This is an inspiring example of the determination
of our class internationally. The launching of a People̓s War
in Nepal by initially unarmed masses is a powerful echo of the international
proletariat̓s view of how this world must and can be changed
arms-in-hand by class-conscious workers and peasants. In both Peru
and Nepal, the revolutionary road of the Maoists has been bitterly
opposed by phony communists (revisionists) who have helped the reactionaries
try to suppress the armed uprisings.
While the imperialists and reactionaries of the world crowed about
the “death of communism”, the parties and organizations
of RIM and other Maoist forces have led revolutionary struggles
and gained in strength. Our Movement has uncompromisingly spread
a revolutionary communist view of changing the world and has worked
to help form Maoist parties and organizations wherever they do not
yet exist and strengthen those already in existence. Because in
a world where the ruling structures in many countries are tottering
with instability and the masses cannot live like before, what is
most often lacking is a Marxist-Leninist-Maoist vanguard capable
of leading the struggle and sacrifices of the masses to victory.
The international proletariat needs to unite its ranks around
a clear revolutionary communist vision and programme and build an
international centre for pushing forward the process of the world
proletarian revolution. This is why RIM has been formed as a stepping-stone
towards forming a Communist International of a new type, based on
Marxism-Leninism-Maoism. This is how Marx and Engels̓ historic
call, “Workers of all countries, unite!” can and must
be realized at this time. Only this kind of a centre can bring to
bear the collective strength of our class worldwide to aid the revolutionary
process at key junctures and places, while pushing the overall process
of world proletarian revolution forward. Only this kind of centre
can galvanize the potential allies of the proletariat internationally
in order to shore up the revolutionary front against imperialism
in the world.
Let us express this view of the world even more rsoundingly and
uncompromisingly in different parts of the world, train the proletarian
masses with it, and lead them in revolution, so that the earth shall
indeed rise on new foundations.
Long Live Red May First!
Long Live People̓s War in Peru, Nepal and around the World!
Step up the Struggle for a New Communist International!
Build and Strengthen Marxist-Leninist-Maoist Parties United
in the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement!
Photo: May 1st 1997 — Germany. The banner reads: Burn Down
German Imperialism in the Flames of Revolution, Revolutionary Communists
Approximately 3000 people took part in the spirited and militant
Revolutionary May First demonstration in Oranienplatz in Berlin,
Germany, which celebrated the 10th anniversary of the 1987 rebellion
in Kreuzberg. The mainly Kurdish, Turkish and German participants
came from a variety of political groups and social movements, from
feminists, to autonomen, squatters, punks, anarchists, communists
as well as a large number of proletarian youth. Of particular significance
in 1997 was the participation of groups and individuals supporting
RIM in the international Maoist contingent, with people from several
nationalities travelling from Sweden, Denmark, Italy, Portugal,
England and Holland.
The ruling class tried in many ways to prevent a revolutionary
celebration of the rebellion of Turkish youth ten years ago. On
May 1st itself, helicopters swarmed overhead and thousands of police
invaded Kreuzberg like an occupying army, with riot equipment, water
cannons and special anti-barricade tanks. They set up I.D. controls
to try to intimidate people from coming.
In the weeks before, the German rulers had organized a major press
campaign of misinformation, slandering the demonstration as led
by only one “dogmatic” violence-prone group. They hoped
to prepare public opinion for the use of massive force and to further
confuse and divide the already complicated political scene in Berlin.
Questions over the participation of immigrants, upholding the “non-German”
Kreuzberg rebellion and the need to oppose the German ruling class
in a revolutionary way were being hotly debated in the political
movements, including some of those directly connected to parliamentary
In addition the ugly climate of racist immigrant bashing was stirred
up again leading up to May 1st, with Nazi terms like “rats
and scum” coming directly from the mouths of ruling parliamen-tarians.
They threw the “left-wing lumpen proletariat” (the Oranienplatz
revolutionaries) in the same category and vowed to stamp them out.