A WORLD TO WIN    #23   (1998)



Strategy and Tactics of Armed Struggle in Nepal

Strategy and Tactics of Armed Struggle in Nepal was adopted by the Third Plenum of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) [CPN(M)] in March 1995. This is a historic document representing a break with wrong lines dominating the Nepalese communist movement for decades. The understanding forged in this document laid the basis for the initiation of the People̓s War in Nepal in February 1996. This document is reprinted from The Worker, organ of the CPN(M), No. 3 — AWTW

Historical Background

When analyzing Nepal̓s history from a historical materialistic perspective, it can be easily inferred that the Nepalese people have been struggling against the complexities of natural forces and various man-made problems for their own survival and development. Modern Nepal was evolved through the struggle between and the intermingling of, on the one hand, simple, innocent people struggling to live peacefully on steep slopes with their natural economic system and tribal culture, and on the other hand, against the Hindus who had periodically intruded into this country from the south, especially about 1,000 years ago, with their superior technology of production and art of war, after they were defeated by the Muslims. In this historical process the rise of princes and chieftains and the continuing struggle between them has forced the people to be trained in violent struggle, which has been proved by history. The Nepalese people who had acquired military and fighting prowess in the course of their historical development were able to fight bravely against the Britishers in the south and the Chinese in the north, who were well equipped with modern knowledge, techniques and weapons, during the later period. In the battles fought for their own sovereignty, the children, old men, women and youths have demonstrated unprecedented sacrifices, bravery and cleverness on the basis of arms and equipment made in their own country. This frightened and terrorized even large imperialist armies and their commanders and established th Nepalese (Gorkhali) people as one of the greatest fighters in the world. Even today any independent Nepalese would feel proud when they remember the fighting prowess, bravery and sacrifice of the Nepalese people in the past history. It is a matter of no lesser pride that even Karl Marx, the proponent of communist ideology and the leader of the world proletariat, had also appreciated the sacrifice, bravery and skill shown by the Nepalese people in those wars.

                However, from the point of view of the leadership, even yesterday and today foreign imperialism and its running dog, the domestic reactionary ruling class, have conspiratorially turned the brave Nepalese into mercenary soldiers. For us it is necessary to pass this historical legacy to the people through the struggle and encourage them to take their fate in their own hands.

                 Here, even after the development of the centralized Nepalese state, the Nepalese people have been fighting and opposing in their own way the atrocities let loose by the ruling classes, especially the Ranas and the Shahas. Notable among these are many clashes within the different ruling classes and the rebellion of Lakhan Thapa against the Ranas. Against the background of the growing people̓s consciousness and rebellion worldwide around the period of the Second World War, the Nepalese people too began to fight violently against the oppression perpetrated by the ruling classes. In this process, the Communist Party was born in Nepal and Nepal entered into the stage of new democratic revolution against feudalism and imperialism. The people from different parts of the country rose to fight with arms against the Indian expansionist ruling classes, their stooge the Nepali Congress, and the feudal king, who had conspired to crush the people̓s movement through the Delhi Accord. In this connection the armed rebellion that took place in the Bhairahawa area is notable. Even after that the people continued to be involved in small or big struggles breaking the reactionary law and administration. Armed conflicts against the local feudal tyrants in different places started taking place.

                 Among this kind of armed rebellion against feudalism and expansionism, the armed rebellion that took place under the leadership of Bhim Datta Pant in the western part of Nepal is historically important — in the year 1952-53 alone, the way Bhim Datta Patta Pant formed hundreds of armed squads, the way he was able to annihilate corrupt government officials, the way he was able to capture grain from the government granaries and other essentials and distribute them among the poor and famine-stricken peasants, the way he was able to attack the feudal tyrants one after another, was not unimportant. The very fact that it was beyond the capacity of the Nepalese Government to quell this rebellion itself proves clearly how popular and powerful it was. Thousands of Indian troops were called inside to quell this rebellion and the leader was killed in a most gruesome and inhuman manner. It was from that period onwards that the present ruling class had shown its anti-national, capitulationist and fascist nature.

                 During this period peasants in league with the Communist Party started fighting against feudal exploitation in different districts of the country. Amongst them the peasant rebellion developed in Bara, Parsa and especially in Rautahat which was of special importance. Thousands of peasants defied the law and administration to destroy the bond papers of the local feudal tyrants, to break their granaries, to start a cultural movement to snub the pride of the feudals, thus spearheading the violent struggles. The peasants nearly captured local political power, leading to panic flights by local feudal landlords. However, it is a matter of sad concern that the then leadership of the Communist Party — instead of analyzing the peasant class war and armed rebellions that were taking place in different parts of Nepal and without exploring the potentiality of waging a guerrilla war — condemned them as extremist, and went to surrender before the king. It tried to limit itself into legal, peaceful struggle and to work within the parliamentary system. This was a historical betrayal in the direction of revisonism that would have a long-term impact in the Nepalese communist movement.

                 Even after that the people̓s rebellion went ahead. Peasant rebellions of different kinds continued. In this period, the peasants̓ long struggle against the feudals in Khaniyavas of Dhading and that of Dang are worth mentioning. Illegal struggles of a small and big nature continued against the signing of the Gandak Treaty by the so-called elected Nepali Congress Government in the year 1959 and against the bootlickers of the Indian expansionists. Violent struggles in different places against the Royal coup of 1960 and against the partyless Panchayat system were also seen. In this period, the leftist youth and student movement continued despite the imprisonment, repression and terror unleashed on them.

                 The armed struggle of 1972-73 in Jhapa, in line with the protracted people̓s war waged in rebellion against the right revisionism prevalent in the communist movement, is the most noteworthy struggle. That rebellion certainly represents the revolutionary trend and spirit. Those who have been martyred in the process of consciously establishing a new democratic republic are immortal martyrs. Although there were deep shortcomings in the leadership in terms of petit-bourgeois mechanistic and “leftist” adventurist tendencies, it was however an important far-reaching rebellion against the autocratic feudal rule of the king and against the rightist reformist tendencies that had become deeply entrenched in the Nepalese communist movement. In the armed struggle to pursue the new democratic revolution the martyrs of the Jhapa rebellion will remain in the forefront.

                 Around this time, the intense struggles against the feudals and exploiters in the Eastern Terai consisting of Sarlahi, Mahottari, Siraha, Dhanusha and Sindhuli have established a new record in the history of the peasant movement. In this process, too, hundreds of thousands of farmers under the leadership of the Party were involved in the class struggle resulting in a kind of power vacuum in the villages. It can be clearly seen that there was a possibility of initiating the process of guerrilla war from the foundation of the peasants̓ struggle of that period. However, because of the reformist line and the petit-bourgeois pretensions of the Party, the peasants became helpless under the onslaught of the reactionary military operation. During that time many brave sons of the Nepalese revolutionary movement got martyred.

                 Amidst this, in Chitawan, the peasants̓ struggle, including the Jugedi struggle, took place. Even in that rebellion many peasant youths got martyred. The historic students̓ movement of 1979 took the form of the people̓s movement throughout the country. In this process the development of the countrywide violent peasant struggle took place. This brought in the waves of the big peasant struggle in the Eastern Terai districts, mentioned above, and others including in Chitawan, Dang and Bardiya. Different sections of the people including peasants got involved in the countrywide struggle against the Panchayat and the monarchy by defying the reactionary law and administration. The king was forced to concede an alternative choice against the so-called choiceless Panchayat because of the strength of the violent struggle for people̓s power, although behind it there was an inherent conspiracy plotted by the king and the monarchical forces. Even after that the trend of people̓s struggle forged ahead by becoming stronger day after day for the sake of nationalism, democracy and the livelihood of the people.

                 The historical people̓s movement of 1990 became the central expression of all these movements. Here, along with the countless violent conflicts all over Nepal including in the capital city, the movement began to forge ahead to end the monarchical system. In this historic struggle, hundreds of brave sons and daughters of Nepal had to lose their lives. However the domestic and foreign reactionaries, including the right reformists in order to get limited reforms, went ahead to compromise with the king against the (high) level and spirit of the movement and succeeded in their conspiracy to derail the movement. It is clear that the end of thepartyless Panchayat and the establishment of the multi-party system under the leadership of the king is also the result of the people̓s violent struggle.

                 Even after the establishment of the multi-party system, many people are still in the process of the struggle for nationality, democracy and the livelihood of the people. In this period we have also clearly seen in the course of the general legal movements under our leadership that people are willing to extend them full help and support with great enthusiasm when there are direct attacks against the reactionary state and there are violent clashes. Within a short period of the establishment of the multi-party system hundreds of Nepalese have lost their lives for the sake of liberation and their rights, in which an important leader of our Party from Dhanusha and other cadres throughout the country have also fallen.

                 The conscious peasant class struggle developed in the western hilly districts, particularly in Rolpa and Rukum, representing a high level of anti-feudal and anti-imperialist revolutionary struggle. Despite severe reactionary repression and terror, the movement not only remains sustained but also is going ahead as a resistance movement with a qualitative leap. That struggle has given birth to some new factors in the Nepalese communist movement which have inspired us to be more serious about the business of armed struggle.

                 From the above historical review it can be concluded that:

1. The reactionary propaganda that the Nepalese people are peace-loving and that they don̓t like violence is absolutely false. It is an incontrovertible fact that the Nepalese people have been waging violent struggle for their rights since historical times.

2. Until today whatever general reforms have been achieved by the Nepalese people, behind them was the force of the violent and illegal struggle of the people.

3. The Nepalese people are very conscious and sensitive about the question of nationalism and that they feel proud to lay down their lives while fighting rather than submit to the pressures of the foreigners.

4. From the year 1951 onwards until today, mainly the Nepalese peasants, and other sections of the people, have been joining in countless numbers of violent and armed conflicts against the reactionary state, and the anti-establishment feeling among the Nepalese people is very strong.

5. The Nepalese people are the great warriors of the world who are known for their ability to bear the severe material and bodily hardships while fighting.

6. The domestic and foreign reactionaries including the revisionist element have been time and again ditching and conspiring against the fighting tendency of the Nepalese people. Today the greatest responsibility has fallen upon the revolutionaries to initiate armed struggle methodically and consciously against feudalism and imperialism and to complete the new democratic revolution by representing that great historical legacy.

The Nepalese Communist Movement and the Question of Armed Struggle

   In the development of class struggle in Nepalese society the establishment of the Communist Party in the year 1949 represents an important historic achievement for the proletarian class of Nepal. Even though the Party was not able to grasp the essence and importance of armed struggle, it was able to take a clear political stand to fight for new democratic revolution against feudalism and imperialism. Thus with all its qualities of childhood (immaturity), it waged propaganda and agitation from the communist point of view on the question of nationality, democracy and people̓s livelihood and it attempted to arouse the masses mainly in the rural areas against feudalism. Because of this process within a short period people from different parts of the country became attracted towards communist politics and the peasants̓ struggle started spreading in different places. Amongst them the peasants̓ movement in the Terai has special importance. Because of the development of the peasants̓ struggle the question of the correct political line in concrete terms arose in the Party. But the then Party leadership not only completely failed to lead the struggle in a revolutionary direction but also in the year 1955 it decided to limit itself to peaceful propaganda activities for socialism under the feudal monarchy. From this point onwards the Nepalese communist movement got openly dominated by the right revisionist line. After this for a long time the Party was completely submerged into peaceful, parliamentary and reformist activities.

                 Even when in the year 1960 the king imposed autocratic rule in the country by banning all the political parties, the leadership of the Party, which had been submerged into reformism, limited itself to various types of parliamentary slogans resembling those of other reactionary parties instead of advancing revolutionary political slogans and forms of struggle. At this very juncture the great debate between China and Russia and the development of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution under the leadership of Comrade Mao initiated a debate in its own way about the necessity of armed struggle and the importance of fighting against revisionism. One section of the Party nakedly followed Russian revisionism and it began to get exposed thoroughly amongst the people. The larger part of the old generation of Party leadership supported Comrade Mao and China and the path of new democratic revolution against the Russian revisionism. Pushpa Lal in his document in the Gorakhpur conference even wrote, “It is impossible to establish this kind of system without waging protracted armed revolution.” (Moolbato, p.66)

                 However, even then, the leadership of the old generation of that period were not able to evolve even from a tactical point of view the concrete political line of revolution and failed completely to determine the revolutionary forms of struggle to achieve them. In this regard the leadership of the Fourth Congress demonstrated extreme haziness about the basic path of the revolution by bringing in even more illusive and clearly reformist political slogans and by talking of “armed peasant rebellion”. In essence in terms of political line, this section talked of some revolution; however in practice it assumed a reformistcharacter and moved along in a pseudo-reformist direction.

                 In this regard after the Naxalbari armed peasant struggle began under the leadership of Comrade Charu Mazumdar in India after rebelling against the reformist CPI-M, its clear influence was seen among the revolutionary youths of Jhapa in the eastern part of Nepal. Similarly even here some enthusiastic and revolutionary youths of the eastern region went ahead with armed actions declaring armed struggle under the protracted people̓s war strategy by rebelling against the revisionism that had taken deep root in the Party. Despite serious shortcomings due to petit-bourgeois mechanistic thought and “left” adventurism, the armed action was a historic rebellion which created flutters amongst the revisionists in the Nepalese communist movement and the feudal state structure of the king. At least the question of armed struggle became a topic of great debate in the Communist movement. The Jhapa struggle played an important role in intensifying inner struggle between the revolutionaries and the newly emerging opportunists within the pseudo-reformist groups following a reformist line. The debate on whether to accept the line of armed struggle or not started taking place in their own ways within the Fourth Congress, Pushpa Lal, Manmohan, Rohit and the rest of the groups.

                 Most of the reformist leaders of these groups provided illusions for a large section of the revolutionary left forces by accepting the necessity of armed struggle in abstract terms and for the future, but they kept on mounting antagonistic attacks against the present spark of revolution kindled by the armed actions. On this question, the Fourth Congress group headed by Mohan Bikram was in the forefront of those attacking it viciously. The revisionist essence of Mohan Bikram — known for mounting a destructive attack on the leftist revolutionaries of the Jhapa struggle and giving preference to make Man Mohan Adhikari, the pro-king renegade, as the Chairman of the Central Nucleus — is unchanged and well reflected even today in his analysis of the UML as a friendly force, even when it has degenerated into reaction and in his antagonism in practice towards our Party.

                 Because of intense repression by the reactionary forces, vicious attacks by the known pseudo-reformists and mainly due to the leadership̓s petit-bourgeois, mechanistic and “left” adventurist thoughts, the Jhapa rebellion could not develop into a people̓s war. As a result of the infiltration of incompatible forces from different groups, together with the slow degeneration of the leadership of the Jhapa rebellion into right revisionism, today they have even gone to the extent of sitting in the reactionary ministry of the king. However, the process of building a revolutionary trend by rectifying past mistakes is still on. Some leaders of that period are even today raising the banner of rebellion against reformism and reaction despite long jail sentences, torture and enticement.

                 Because of the contemporary national and international situation and the influence of the Jhapa struggle, the debate and inner struggle within the Fourth Congress increased in regards to the question of political slogans and the line of armed struggle. Despite theoretical and political unclarity relating to armed struggle, the immortal martyr Comrade Azad also played a role in this debate. Ultimately, after a long and complex struggle the genuine revolutionary forces within the Party managed to save it from the representatives of pseudo-reformism, Mohan Bikram and Nirmal Lama, by advancing revolutionary slogans for political power and the inevitability of protracted people̓s war for achieving it. Today it has become successful in forging the revolutionary alternative in the country by assimilating all the past revolutionary activities (including the Jhapa struggle) of the Nepalese communist movement. The Unity Congress of the Party has developed a clear outlook on this issue. In this hour of history we must admit in unequivocal terms that we have yet to materialize in practice what we have correctly formulated in theory regarding the general political slogans and the path to be followed. The reason behind this is, besides the complxities of the situation and the inner struggle, the Party is yet to be cured of the petit-bourgeois disease of revolution in words but opportunism in practice. It is necessary to make a concrete plan of going ahead with the task of armed struggle by doing this kind of self-criticism.

The Nature, Target and Motivating Force of Armed Struggle in Nepal

                 According to the theoretical directives of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism and the general specificities of the Nepalese society our Party has formulated a political strategy of completing new democratic revolution with a people̓s democratic dictatorship under the leadership of the proletariat based on the unity of the workers and peasants against feudalism and imperialism. The long-term aim of the Party is to move towards socialist revolution after the successful completion of the new democratic revolution as an integral part of the world proletarian socialist revolution and to achieve communism by waging cultural revolutions based upon the theory of continuing the revolution under the dictatorship of the proletariat. It is clear that the nature and orientation of the Nepalese armed struggle will be directed by and committed to the aim of this political strategy. Accordingly the nature and orientation of the Nepalese armed struggle has been clearly specified by the National Unity Congress of the Party as, “The line of protracted people̓s war based upon the strategy of surrounding the city from the countryside”.

The Target of Armed Struggle

                 The aim of the armed struggle is to solve the basic contradictions between feudalism and the Nepalese people, imperialism (mainly Indian expansionism) and the Nepalese people, comprador and bureaucrat capitalism and the Nepalese people, and in the immediate term the contradiction between domestic reaction which is made up of a combination of feudal and comprador and bureaucratic capitalist classes backed by Indian expansionism and the Nepalese people. This way it is clear the target of the armed struggle will be confiscating the lands of feudals and landlords and distributing them amongst the landless and poor peasants on the basis of the land to the tiller theory and to attack them for this purpose; and in order to cut the roots of imperialist exploitation through projects such as industries, banks, etc., in the hands of comprador and bureaucratic capitalists and projects run by government and non-government organizations and to attack them for the same purpose.

                 This way it is clear that the target of armed struggle will be against feudals, landlords, comprador and bureaucratic capitalists.

Motivating Force

(A) The Proletariat: It is the fundamental motivating force of new democratic revolution. Although the numeric strength of proletarian workers in the modern industries and factories of Nepal is small, it is, however, increasing. Even though the number is small, this class, which is completely alienated from the modern production processes and productive forces, is the most revolutionary class of the society. For the success of new democratic revolution, this class has the historical responsibility of identifying and giving leadership to other allied classes.

(B) The farm workers, bonded labourers, landless peasants, porters and poor peasants, and in our case in the cities the cart pullers, rickshaw pullers, drivers of tempos, taxis, and the transport and hotel workers etc., are the most reliable, consisting of a big section of the population, and the main motivating force for the Nepalese new democratic revolution. (Here, by “poor peasants” is generally meant those peasants who cannot make their livelihood from their land alone.)

(C) Middle peasants: Those who live with difficulty even after working hard on their land throughout the year and who also take some land on a contract or on a share-cropping basis. In the hilly regions of Nepal these peasants outnumber other classes. For the new democratic revolution this class is an important motivating force.

(D) Rich peasants: Those who can have a good livelihood from their land; they are able to employ one or two labourers in their work despite their own participation in their farm work and are able to accumulate part of their income through exploitation. This class is a vacillating ally for the new democratic revolution.

(E) Petit-bourgeois class: In this class are included the teachers of schools and colleges, students, doctors, engineers, lawyers, junior office workers, petty traders of towns, retail traders, craftsmen, etc. Because of the nature and conditions of its production process this class remains vacillating. Despite this, this class can play an important auxiliary role for the new democratic revolution. Today the imperialists and the reactionary forces are focusing their attention to keep the intellectuals of this class away from the revolution.

(F) National bourgeoisie: In Nepal although it (i.e. the national bourgeoisie) doesn̓t have an independent role it is slowly taking form. These kinds of capitalists who are involved in small handicrafts and modern industries and trade are at one end dreaming of amassing the wealth by exploiting the workers, and at the other end they are being run over by the monopolist comprador and bureaucratic capitalists. Hence they nturally show a contradictory character towards the revolution. Used to changing its character according to the situation, this class will remain a vacillating ally of the revolution.

It is obvious that the Nepalese armed struggle should formulate its strategy and factors by taking into consideration the above general condition and character of the enemy and the motivating forces of the new democratic revolution.

The Problem of Strategy and Tactics of Armed Struggle in Nepal

                 In the present era of imperialism and proletarian revolution, the enemy class is practicing various forms of conspiratorial strategies to stop revolution in countries like ours. Amongst them we must focus our attention on the following because we can̓t arrive at a correct strategy without understanding the strategy of the enemy.

1. Because of its monopolistic hold over the communication over the whole world at this time, the enemy is launching a disinformation campaign with the deliberate propaganda of “terrorism”, “fall of socialism” and the “superiority and success” of capitalism and attempting to lower the morale of people through the strategy of psychological warfare.

2. It is unleashing a vicious cultural war through the flooding of vulgar culture and literature in order to distort the minds and souls of the people.

3. All the imperialist forces and the reactionary ruling classes of each country are campaigning strategically by spreading the network of well trained and technically equipped spies and attempting to infiltrate into the revolutionary Party in order to collect information, to create illusions inside the Party, to do destructive activities and to arrest or kill the genuine revolutionary leaders or activists of the Party.

4. They are inventing new forms of reforms and democracy in order to confuse the people politically.

5. Under the strategy of preventing revolution in a country like ours the network of Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) have been spread in order to engage some educated middle class people, to prevent them from falling below the midde class and to entrap the people in a petty reformist mirage.

6. They are encouraging unemployed youths to get scattered all over the world and to wander into India in the name of employment. The youths are being used as mercenary soldiers in foreign armies.

7. The imperialists are polluting the minds of the people through the propagation of religion and other means after entering into rural areas with attractive slogans.

8. If despite all these and other innumerable traps the revolutionary movement rises up then they start a campaign of heinous genocide through their powerful permanent army. In short, in the present era, the strategy of the enemy of the people is that of total war.

In such a situation the strategy of a revolutionary party that wants to go ahead with armed struggle to make a revolution should also be clearly based on total war. It is necessary for us to adopt the strategy and tactics of tit for tat against the imperialist and reactionary forces by uniting with the people in all spheres of national and international life. The ideological weapon of MLM which has proved successful in destroying the enemy is an invincible weapon of the proletarian class. In this light it is necessary to determine the strategy and tactics of the Nepalese armed struggle by focusing on the overall state of the enemies together with the basic specificities of Nepal and Nepalese society.

1. Nepal is a landlocked country which is surrounded on three sides by expansionist India and in the north by reformist China. Although it is small in terms of area, however except for 17% of the Terai plain lands, the rest of the country is geographically replete with remote hills and Himalayan mountains with different climates, ethnic groups, cultures and languages.

2. In Nepal for a long period, a centralized reactionary state equipped with a modern and powerful permanent army and bureaucracy has been in existence. This is especially centralized in the cities. The enemies of the Nepalese people are not only within the country but also present outside of it in the form of imperialists, especially the Indian expansionists.

3. The economic and political development of Nepal has been uneven. Nepal is predominantly rural and the exploited peasants who represent 90% of the total people are spread throughout the villages. The process of urbanization s on the rise; however we must say it is still small.

4. The Nepalese peasants and other sections of the masses have passed through a process of different forms of struggle both local and countrywide for a long time. There is a widespread attraction towards communism among the people. However, here the influence of reformism and right revisionism is also strong. In Nepal there has been virtually no direct experience of armed struggle under the leadership of the Communist Party.

5. The reactionary ruling class of the semi-feudal and semi-colonial Nepal, where the medieval monarchy system exists, is undergoing intense crisis and this crisis has started manifesting politically as well as in a serious manner.

6. A big section of the Nepalese people are spread in different countries for employment, mainly in India for the army and other kinds of work.

It is through the above specificities that the orientation and politics and tactics of the Nepalese armed struggle can be discerned. From the first specificity it can be seen that for waging war in Nepal it has neither a large area, or any possibility of using any sea; nor is there a widespread forest nor is there any possibility of direct help or support from any other neighbouring country. However, the geographical situation is most favourable for waging guerrilla war with a direct link with the people. And because of the struggle against the national oppression of the majority of the nationalities this will also provide a good mass base for the guerrilla war. The second specificity shows that there is no situation of a direct military clash between the enemy forces for political power, which the armed forces of the people could take advantage of to seize a definite area. This clearly proves that the Nepalese armed struggle cannot take the form of direct or positional warfare against the enemy at the beginning. It is necessary to expand the people̓s armed strength by attacking the enemy̓s weak spots piecemeal and by weakening it through attacks in guerrilla style in favourable areas for the people. When the first and second specificities are viewed together it is found possible to establish and survive independently in certain specific areas just as in China̓s Ching Kang-shan and to be able to expand from these onwards. The third specificity shows the possibility of starting guerrilla wars in different parts of the country and developing them by taking peasant revolution as the backbone by centralizing in the rural areas and by relying on and uniting with the peasants. The fourth specificity clearly shows that people̓s support will go on increasing if the right revisionists are thoroughly exposed and the tactics of armed struggle are pursued vigilantly. The fifth specificity indicates that the pace of development of the armed struggle to establish the people̓s alternative revolutionary power would be faster and inspires undertaking bold actions to achieve it. And the sixth specificity demonstrates the necessity of mobilizing the Nepalese people working in foreign countries — mainly those Nepalese working in India — by conducting political work among them and using the aea for the supplying of various necessities for the success of the armed struggle in Nepal.

                 The synthesis of all the specificities shows clearly that it is impossible for the armed struggle in Nepal to make a quick leap into an insurrection and defeat the enemy. However, it is fully possible to finally crush the enemy through systematic development of the Nepalese armed struggle. It can be derived clearly from this that the Nepalese armed struggle must necessarily adopt a protracted people̓s war strategy of surrounding the city from the countryside. It is also clear that that path can be trod only after paying attention to our own specificities of the country.

                 The fundamental principles of this path are: To grasp firmly the fact that the people̓s war is the war of the masses, that it can be developed only by relying on the masses and principally on the peasants and that the masses are the creators of history; to acknowledge the need and importance of the stages of strategic defence, stalemate and offence of the people̓s war and to make plans accordingly by accepting the strategic role of guerrilla war as it is the principal form of war in the initial stage of strategic defence; to grasp the importance of developing guerrilla warfare into positional warfare and of establishing base areas to capture central power; and above all, in the ideological directives of MLM to establish the leadership of the party over the army and not to permit at any cost to arise a situation where the gun would control the party. It is by practicing the main strategic principles of protracted people̓s war and by refraining from making mistakes that one can unfold the laws of the Nepalese people̓s war. It is important to note the truth that the laws of war can only be learnt by participating in war. The overall strategic and tactical aim of war is to preserve one̓s force and to destroy the enemy̓s force. That is why it is important to be clear right in the beginning about the policies needed to develop the Nepalese people̓s war by understanding the overall national and international situation and the specificities mentioned above.

                 In our situation — give priority to the rural work, but do not leave urban work; give priority to illegal struggle, but do not leave legal struggle too; give priority to specific strategic areas, but do not leave work related to the mass movement too; give priority to class struggle in the villages, but do not leave countrywide struggle too; give priority to guerrilla actions, but do not leave political exposure and propaganda too; give priority to propaganda work within the country but do not leave worldwide propaganda too; give priority to building the army organization, but do not leave building front organizations too; give priority to rely on one̓s own organization and force, but do not miss forging unity in action, to take support and help from the international arena; it is only by applying these policies carefully that the armed struggle can be initiated, preserved and developed. Neither by being one-sided, nor by giving equal emphasis to all work, can in the present context the people̓s war be initiated, preserved and developed. From this point of view the people̓s war will go ahead as a total war.

                 The successful development of the Nepalese people̓s war will be determined by decentralizing actions based on central policy, by launching actions at different isolated spots of the enemy and by applying a large force against small forces in order to get quick victory, by adopting hit-and-run tactics, by going ahead with guerrilla actions under the centralized plan from different parts of the country but also by giving special attention to specific strategic areas, and as Mao has said, by organizing and mobilizing as many people as possible and as fast as possible and as good as possible by placing the question of capturing political power at the centre.

Some Important Questions Regarding he Initiation of the Armed Struggle

                 How to transform a Party like ours which has been for a long period used to the reformist and parliamentary activities despite a clear political line, favourable material conditions, an appropriate and increasing mass base, into a Party for armed struggle? Is it possible to transform gradually through study, training, reformist struggle, and a small-scale resistance struggle? Or for that any leap, a rupture with the past, a decisive step or any big push is necessary? Will our Party be able to enter into armed struggle smoothly, without causing any damage to the fundamental class organizational structure? After the start of the guerrilla war what will be its consequence and the process of its development? Regarding this, what do Marxist dialectics, the experience of the International Communist Movement and our own experience show? Without being clear about these questions we can̓t start guerrilla war.

                 Marxism is a philosophy of struggle. The law of development according to Marxist dialectics is that each process of development in nature, society and human thought takes place through the struggle of opposites and its obvious result will take the form of a leap. Any thought that sees any kind of development process as an ordinary addition-subtraction scheme and as gradual evolution should be exposed as bourgeois evolutionism by the Marxists. It is clear that transformation from one process to another process does not take place gradually, but through leaps, through qualitative change, through revolution.

                 In this regard Lenin says development is the struggle of opposites; there are basically two outlooks regarding development, the development in the form of increase and decrease and the development as a unity of opposites. Mao has given the name of vulgar evolutionism to the thought that looks at development as increase and decrease or as repetition, and said instead that the inevitable result of the unity and struggle of opposites is a qualitative change — or leap. This he formulated as unity-struggle-transformation.

                 In regards to the theory of knowledge, Mao developed the theory of two leaps, i.e. from perceptual knowledge to rational knowledge, and from rational knowledge to revolutionary practice. Among these Mao has termed the phenomenon of leap from rational knowledge to revolutionary practice as “extremely important”. On this Mao says: “Only this leap — the first leap of acquiring knowledge, or the thoughts, theories, policies, plans and means crystallized as a reflection of the objective external world, verifies the right from the wrong. Not only this — the only intention of the proletariat to know the world is to change it”.

                 Thus Mao has emphasized on the need and importance of the leap in the process of transformation of thought into practice.

                 Leap, qualitative change and revolution is not gradual evolution but a state of rupture, or a state of transformation of the opposites into each other as Mao, while talking of revolution as not being polite, restrained, etc., had mentioned about qualitative change, its process, etc.

                 From this it is clear that the essence of Marxist dialectics on this issue is to transform thought into practice. The conscious side has to make a plan of not gradual evolution but that of a leap. After having formed an opinion about the character of the Nepalese revolution, ways of achieving it on the basis of understanding the material conditions of development of the class struggle in the Nepalese society and the international situation, it would not be revolutionary Marxism and will be mere vulgar evolutionism or petit-bourgeois reformism if we continue to repeat in practice the ways of gradual evolution or of reform. It is impossible to transform from one process to another in a gradual manner, for that it is necessary to have a qualitative leap. Hence it is only through the process of push, leap and qualitative change tha our Party, which has not taken to armed struggle even after developing thoughts about it, will be transformed into a Party capable of leading armed struggle. This matches with the past and the present experiences of the International Communist Movement.

                 Besides this we must also be clear that this leap will bring a big change in the structure of a Party like ours which has a predominance of representatives of the petit-bourgeois class and which has been used to a reformist work style. That is also not going to be smooth and easy; there will be a big change in the overall class structure of the Party because of the process of the coming and going of its members. This process will unfold amidst big losses and achievements. In this process, many mistakes, weaknesses and inadequacies of the Party will have to be paid for by blood.

                 After the guerrilla war has started, it will go ahead with the process of rise and fall, victory and defeat according to the law of war. But it is important to pay attention to the fact that once one has raised the banner of rebellion one should be determined to not lower it until the end, and if done without such a determination it will mean sinning against the people and it will be against the theory of MLM.

                 After having a Communist Party with an ideological weapon, political line and means of achieving it, the remaining problem is actually the problem of starting people̓s war. Lacking clarity on this question, it is not possible to get liberated from reformism. It has been verified by history that the people will judge positively all the historical deeds done for the sake of the people and when done with a profound belief in the principle of “the masses are the makers of history”.