A WORLD TO WIN    #26   (2000)

Appeal to the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) (People's War) and the Maoist Communist Centre

20 December 1999

By the Fourth Regional Conference of South Asian Parties and Organisations of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement

With a deep sense of anguish, comradely concern and responsibility, this Regional Conference of the South Asian Parties and Organisations of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement issues this appeal to the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) (People's War) and the Maoist Communist Centre.

Comrades, both of your parties have a heroic record of revolutionary armed struggle and self-sacrifice. The struggles led by you continue to inspire the revolutionaries, progressives and the broad masses not only in India but throughout the world. Hence, it is only natural that reports of armed clashes between the activists and supporters of both of your parties has shocked them and caused great concern.

True to their reactionary character, the ruling classes in India and elsewhere are rubbing their hands in glee over this. They are doing all they can to use these clashes to paint an ugly picture not only of your parties but of the whole communist project itself. The evil content of the propaganda of these ruthless butchers of humanity will no doubt be rejected by the masses. But, comrades, we must accept that these clashes do indeed raise serious questions in the minds of the revolutionary masses themselves. We must recognise that these clashes are raising serious questions that have deep ideological and political implications for the communist vision of a new world. These clashes are raising questions about our capacity to play the vanguard role in uniting the broad masses for the revolutionary struggle to establish a new-democratic society where the broad masses enjoy genuine democracy and dictatorship is exercised only over the reactionaries.

These clashes are causing heavy damage to our entire, common, communist revolutionary cause. They must stop at once.

We do not intend to enter into a discussion on the rights and wrongs of the causes leading to these clashes. No doubt, they must be summed up. But what is more important is to recognise that there is nothing right or justifiable in using force to resolve contradictions among the people. This is what Mao Tsetung has taught us. Contradictions among the people must be resolved only through persuasion, through political struggle. Never by force.

Comrades, you know how this Maoist principle was applied during the stormy days of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution (GPCR) in China. You know of the heroic communist standards set by the workers of Peking who relied only on their ideology and determination to stop the armed clashes between different factions of the Red Guards in Tsinhua University. Let us not forget that they persisted in this Maoist policy despite having to pay the heavy price of their own lives.

In the context of such clashes it is often argued, "We were not the first to attack and we are only defending ourselves against attacks." This argument must also be examined by applying the lessons of the GPCR. We know how the slogan "Attack with reason, defend with force" which came up in the midst of Red Guard clashes during the GPCR was criticised and withdrawn. Yes, it is true that those circumstances were different. But the lessons gained by our class through the GPCR and the principles of our ideology cannot be denied in the name of particularities or inflamed emotions.

The revolutionary prestige earned by your parties places an even greater responsibility on each of you to break away from a vicious cycle of clashes and counter-clashes. We fully appreciate the difficulties and pressures you face and know that implementing a correct policy in the face of the loss of comrades is no easy matter. We appeal to you to stand firm on the revolutionary principles of our ideology. We call on each of you to publicly declare your willingness even to sacrifice valuable lives in order to put an end to the clashes, by stopping them unconditionally and unilaterally, by refusing to retaliate. Such sacrifice will never be futile. It will be a glorious example of proletarian determination and sacrifice in the cause of the people. It will unleash a tremendous force of revolutionary public opinion which no one can ignore. It will give a powerful impetus in converting a bad thing into a good thing and thus proving once again the strength of our ideology.

When different revolutionary parties are active in the same region, wrong tendencies among the cadres and masses can give rise to strained relations and political differences can be turned into antagonisms. And there will always be opportunists or even bad elements who try to fish in troubled waters. Some exercise of mutual restraint and common sense is called for in such circumstances. This is even more necessary while extending areas of activities. But the only sound and lasting way to tackle such questions, including the question of extension, is that of broadening and deepening ideological, political struggle - among the masses, within the ranks of the party and, when necessary, against opposing political views.

The revolutionary masses, the true creators of history, can never be denied the right to know, examine and grapple with different ideas and arrive at their own conclusions. Besides, the strength of a revolutionary line must also rest on its capacity to retain its support in the face of challenges and even provocation. It can never be "protected" by any means other than ideological and political struggle. Indeed, one of the negative consequences of the clashes is that at a time when the communist movement in India requires more and deeper struggle over the major questions of political and ideological line, these clashes interfere with and obscure such necessary struggle.

Comrades, once again, in a spirit of communist solidarity and with high expectations of the strength of your revolutionary traditions, we appeal to each of you to stop these clashes, unconditionally and unilaterally, and to issue a public proclamation to this effect. This is the pressing need of the time. For our part, the South Asian Parties and Organisations of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement pledge our assistance in helping end these clashes.

Ceylon Communist Party (Maoist)
Communist Party of Bangladesh (Marxist-Leninist) [BSD (ML)]
Communist Party of India
(Marxist-Leninist) Naxalbari
[CPI (ML) Naxalbari]
Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist)
Proletarian Party of Purba Bangla [PBSP] [Bangladesh]
Revolutionary Communist Centre of India (Maoist) [RCCI (M)]
Revolutionary Communist Centre of India (Marxist-Leninist-Maoist) [RCCI (MLM)]