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Reject imperialist propaganda in Ukraine

By | 03/22/2022

We must dispel US propaganda about Ukraine and what it insists as a “Russian invasion.” The US imperialists dominate the “narrative” about the emerging war to demonize Russia and obscure its role in intervention and provocation of war in Ukraine. The US line is being parroted by large news agencies and media outlets, as well the Philippine mass media. There is a lack of critical analysis and understanding of historical and current information about US interference and inter-imperialist conflicts over the current imperialist division in Europe.

To repudiate the deceptive propaganda of the imperialists and fully understand the situation in Ukraine, we must consider and study the following information.

  1. Donbass is a region in the eastern part of Ukraine, bordering Russia’s west. It is an industrial area that developed during the period of socialism under the Soviet Union (USSR). Even before the USSR was formed in 1922, Donbass has been dominated by Russian people (in terms of language, culture and history). The Russian population in Donbass expanded in the 1930s when Russian workers were deployed to help in industrialization.

  2. Ukraine, a former member of the Soviet Union, together with Russia and Belarus (Belarus is a country north of Ukraine) formed the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). When the USSR was dismantled in 1991 after years of capitalist restoration since 1953, these countries forged in Minsk (a city in Belarus) an agreement that they will build a special military area which would not be part of the US-led NATO.

  3. In 2014, the US mounted a coup in Ukraine and installed a puppet regime through the so-called Maidan Revolution. When it assumed power, the Kyiv government (supported by Obama) mounted a relentless bombardment of the Donbass region targeting the civilian population. More than 14,000 were killed in what is considered a genocide or pogrom against the Russian people in Donbass. This is one of the biggest crimes of the Obama government in collusion with the Ukrainian government.

  4. The people of Donbass took up arms and fought the attacks of Kyiv since 2014. From this war emerged the People’s Republic of Donetsk and the People’s Republic of Lugansk (both key areas in Donbass). In negotiations in Minsk in 2014 and 2015, Ukraine was obliged to recognize Donbass as an autonomous area. The agreement also provided for the withdrawal of all foreign troops in Donbass, including forces of the Ukrainian and Russian army.

  5. Far-right neo-Nazi groups are strong in Ukraine; the current president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, is an anti-Russian Nazi. He declared last year that he will “free” Donbass and called on all Russians to “go home to Russia.” Since last year, Kyiv has laid siege on Donbass with several brigades surrounding the region.

  6. On December 16, 2021, the United Nations approved a resolution calling for “combatting glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism.”.Only two countries voted against the resolution: the US and Ukraine.

  7. The US has long sought for the inclusion of Ukraine into NATO because this will help the US strengthen its missile network along Russia’s border. It has missiles positioned in Slovenia and Romania; as well as in Alaska’s border in Russia; it has military bases in Poland; and has positioned war matériel in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. In 2019, the US withdrew from the agreement with Russia concerning intermediate-range nuclear missiles that prohibited both sides from deploying such missiles in each others’ borders.

  8. Since the end of January, Kyiv has been massing up troops to encircle Donbass. Based on some reports, the Ukrainian army has put into position 13 brigades, with some forces occupying some areas in Donetsk. There is information that US military advisers and private military contractors such as the Blackwater (Academi) are stationed in Ukrainian army camps. On February 21, it was reported that Ukrainian forces fired 1,500 artillery shells against Donetsk and Lugansk destroying important civilian infrastructure such as power plants. The US has been claiming that Russian plans to carry out “false flag” operations to obscure the fact that its military advisers have long deployed in Ukraine and are coordinating these attacks to provoke a “Russian invasion.”

  9. This week alone, after around seven years, Russia recognized the People’s Republic of Lugansk and the People’s Republic of Donetsk, an act that these independent republics have long sought for. This raised Donetsk and Lugansk from its former status as forming an autonomous region in Ukraine, to becoming separate republics. By recognizing these two independent states, Russia declared outrightly that it has no intention of occupying these states. On February 22, these two states formally sought Russian military assistance to counter what they described as “the Ukrainian regime’s military aggression into their territory.” As a result of relentless cannon fire by Ukrainian forces, more than 40,000 civilians were forced to evacuate to Russia. In response, Russia sent “peacekeeping” troops into the region.

  10. Russia has ordered a “special military operation” in Ukraine. This is amid escalating armed conflicts between the Donetsk army and Ukrainian soldiers in Donbass. In mounting attacks against Ukrainian military facilities, Russia declared that it has no objective of invading or occupying Ukraine. According to Russian president Vladimir Putin: “It is not part of our plan to occupy any Ukrainian territory. We will not impose anything by force.” Russia’s “special military operations” of mounting attacks against military facilities in Ukraine are described as a response to the relentless attacks of the US-puppet Kyiv regime against the Donbass region and its independent republics.

  11. The attacks against Donbass are part of the US provocations to make Russia “invade” Ukraine. The objective of the US is to ignite a conflict and war in order to boost the sales of its arms and justify increased military aid to Ukraine. The US is drumbeating a Russian “invasion” in order to isolate it from international public opinion, and thus pressure Germany and other US allies in Europe to cut trade relations with Russia, especially the purchase of oil. The US has long opposed the operations of the Nord Stream 2, a new pipeline that can double the delivery of natural gas from Russia to Germany and the rest of Europe.

  12. There is a heightening call from different parts of the world to stop the attacks from all sides, to conduct negotiations and forge agreements for the peaceful resolution of the conflicts. At the center of discussions would be the previous agreements in Minsk (2015) between Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France, in order to forge a new agreement to ensure the peaceful coexistence of countries in the region, as well as the demand of Russia for a specific prohibition against Ukraine’s inclusion into the NATO and an end to Ukraine’s genocidal war in the Donbass.

Conclusions

The current conflict in Ukraine is a manifestation of heightening inter-imperialist conflicts. In particular, war provocations and drumbeating by the US and its NATO allies aim to change the current imperialist division, especially in terms of trade and investment, particularly in Europe; as well as divisions in imperialists spheres of influence and hegemony. On the other hand, Russia’s defense of Donbass and attacks against Ukraine’s military facilities seek to preserve and strengthen the current division that favors its interests.

There is danger that the flames of war in Ukraine and Europe will spread and bring about gross sufferings to the workers and people in the region. The people suffering the worst are those in Donetsk and Lugansk in the face of the relentless Ukrainian attacks. Thus, it is just for the people of Donetsk and Lugansk to uphold their right to national self-determination and win the broadest international support for its aspiration. The people of Ukraine will also suffer as a result of the depletion of resources by the fascist state in waging war against the Donbass region and forcing its people and soldiers into an unjust war of genocide, aggression and territorial occupation.

The conflicts among the imperialist countries generate favorable conditions for the revolutionary proletariat in various countries to expose the rotten capitalist system and the worsening exploitation against workers and other oppressed classes. Communist parties must strengthen their class initiative and strength, to fight the fascist forces and the imperialist war, and advance the revolutionary struggles in their countries.

On heightened US provocations against Russia in Ukraine and effects on oil prices

By | 03/22/2022

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) condemns the US imperialists for heightening provocations and warmongering against Russia in Ukraine. The CPP condemns the Biden regime for issuing sanctions and mobilizing troops in Eastern Europe as part of war preparations against Russia.

Heightened US provocations follows the recognition of Russia of the People’s Republic of Donetsk and the People’s Republic of Lugansk in the predominantly Russian region of Donbass, in the eastern part of Ukraine. This was Russia’s response to the artillery strikes in Donbass by the US-supported fascist forces of Kyiv over the past few days.

Russia’s recognition of the independent people’s republics are well within its rights. Such recognition has long been sought after by the autonomous governments in the Donbass region. The people’s republics have been fighting for their right to self-determination since 2014 when the US-installed Kyiv government mounted relentless attacks and acts of aggression against people in the region.

It is also within the rights of Russia and the independent republics to have Russia deploy peacekeeping troops as an act of defense to help the Russian people in the region against military attacks by the US and Kyiv governments, as it did in 2014 when the Russian-majority people of Crimea voted to separate itself from Ukraine to rejoin the Russian federation.

The Biden government is distorting historical facts and current realities by insisting that the presence of Russia in the Donbass region constitutes an “invasion” in the desperate attempt to justify the increased military intervention in Ukraine including the possibility of US forces deployment. Biden has ordered his state secretary to cancel negotiations with Russia despite rhetoric of remaining open to talks.

The US continues to provoke Russia by pushing for the inclusion of Ukraine in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) which would allow the US and allied imperialist powers to position its missiles and other war matériel in the border right next to Russia. The objective of the US is expand the market for its military weapons and boost military production. The plan to have Ukraine join the NATO tramples on the red line set by the Minsk Agreement which constrains NATO’s eastward expansion into the former Warsaw Pact countries.

The US drive to expand its military power in Ukraine is part of its aim to put pressure on Germany and other European countries cancel its contracts for the operation of the Nord Stream 2. The strategic aim of the US is to grab Russia’s oil market in Europe for itself. Russia’s Nord Stream 2, completed last year but which has yet to commence operation, has the potential of doubling the volume of natural gas which the country supplies to Europe.

The Biden government’s increasingly aggressive actions and war mobilization serves the interests of American big oil. US fracking interests have long wanted to expand its overseas markets since oversupply of US shale oil has pushed down prices and resulted in losses. Since the Trump regime, they have been pushing to forge contracts with Germany and other European countries to buy US shale oil and cut contracts for Russia to supply much cheaper natural gas.

The US governments push against Russian oil is causing artificial disruptions in oil supply and are being taken advantaged of by profit-hungry monopoly capitalist oil companies to raise prices through speculation and hoarding. Oil companies are raking in large volumes of profits as the price of crude oil is set to surpass $100 per barrel.

In the Philippines, the Filipino people are suffering from the debilitating effect of non-stop increases in oil prices over the past two month, which are indirect effects of US war provocations in Europe. Rising prices of oil products are pushing high the costs of transportation, food, and other commodities and rapidly eroding the purchasing power of workers and toiling people.

The Filipino people must protest the incessant oil price increases and demand oil companies to immediately rollback prices. At the same time, they must join the international peace-loving community and anti-imperialist forces in denouncing US provocations and warmongering and demand that the US stop its drive to push for the eastward expansion of NATO towards the borders of Russia.

Stop US provocations and warmongering in Ukraine

By | 03/22/2022

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) denounces the US imperialists for provocations and relentless warmongering in Ukraine in the hope of sparking an armed conflict and proxy war with Russia. The US government, in collusion with American big media and the military industrial complex, has been whipping up the threat of an “imminent invasion” by Russia in Ukraine to justify heightened military spending to raise the sales of military weapons. It is also rapidly arming its puppet regime in Ukraine to carry out aggressive action against the independent people’s republics in the Donbass region.

Since last year, the US has been provoking Russia by pushing for the inclusion of Ukraine into the US-led North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and by taking measures to oppose the commercial operations of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

The US puppet regime in Ukraine has been pushing for the country’s inclusion into the NATO, a move which Russia considers a “red line” as it would allow the US and its military allies to position troops, tanks, missiles and other military matériel right next to its border. The NATO currently has 30 member states which bind themselves to the principle than an attack against one is an attack against all and the commitment to defend one another. Russia fears that the inclusion of Ukraine into the NATO, which is being compared to Mexico joining a Chinese- or Russian-led alliance, will reinforce the US network of military bases in its state of Alaska, in Poland, Romania and other countries close to the Russian border.

To further provoke Russia, the US has been opposing the operations of the Nord Stream 2, a natural gas pipeline that is capable of transporting twice the amount that is currently being supplied by Russia to Germany, France, Italy and the rest of western Europe. The construction of the pipeline that goes through the Baltic Sea was completed last year. It has yet to start operation because of US opposition and demand for Europe to buy US shale oil and thus favor American fracking interests. The US has been arm-twisting Germany to turn back on its contracts with Russia.

In the face of US provocations, Russia positioned tanks and an estimated 100,000 troops in its western borders with Ukraine, as well as in the southern borders of Belarus, a country north of Ukraine, where Russia maintains a military base. Russia described these as part of routine training and exercises and declared no intention of aggression against Ukraine. These, however, are clearly part of Russia’s political and diplomatic tactics to oppose moves for Ukraine’s inclusion into the NATO and seal its agreements for the operation of the Nord Stream 2. Russia is pushing for renewed negotiations to reaffirm previous agreements surrounding the Donbass region, explicit prohibition of the eastward expansion of NATO to Ukraine and other countries, and a ban on US and NATO intermediate-range missile in countries within striking distance of Russia.

The Biden government has responded to the Russian political and military moves with outright bellicosity. For weeks now, the US has been beating the drums of war to justify plans of increasing military aid and stepping up weapons sales to Ukraine under the guise of opposing the “imminent invasion” of Ukraine by Russia’s forces, a claim that US officials have failed to provide evidence for. Western media has helped whip up Washington propaganda by calling for “decisive action.”

The US congress aims to triple military aid to Ukraine this year to $1.2 billion including more than $500 million worth of foreign military financing to sell excess weapons, $200 million worth of drawdown authorization for the US president to transfer war matériel in US stockpiles to non-US militaries, and other measures. The US has already allowed its NATO allies Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to send US-made weapons to Ukraine. The US, furthermore, has offered a $1 billion sovereign loan guarantee and support from the International Monetary Fund to secure its puppet regime in Ukraine.

By flooding Ukraine with weapons, the US aims to stoke the war of its puppet Ukrainian government against the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Luhansk People’s Republic in the Donbass region (west of Ukraine), and press for the re-annexation of Crimea, in the hope that this will further provoke Russia. Such aggressive action violates the Minsk II Agreement which gives the Donbass region a special status in Ukraine.

Clearly, the biggest beneficiary of US provocations and warmongering in Ukraine is the military industrial complex and the Pentagon (Department of Defense) which was allotted a record $768 billion budget for 2022. After withdrawing from Afghanistan, the US imperialists are bent on inciting another long-drawn armed conflict onto which it can pour its surplus arms and induce production of more weapons. While the US is constantly pushing to raise the temperature of tensions against China, prospects of an open war in the Asia-Pacific is still not imminent.

The US is pushing its NATO allies to support its heightened military response and threats of economic sanctions against Russia. Some US allies, however, are not ready to ride along with US policy. Germany, which relies largely on Russian natural gas to fuel its economy and provide heating to homes, is not ready to bow to US demands for NATO countries to deploy troops and weapons to Ukraine. Even France has rejected the US line of an “imminent invasion” by Russia. Even the Ukrainian government is wary of US warmongering which has resulted in economic instability and capital flight.

Ukraine was a former socialist country under the Soviet Union. Although it suffered under the errors of overly rapid socialist collectivization of agriculture, its people enjoyed the fruits of industrialization and social progress that guaranteed high standards of living. Ukraine was reduced to an appendage of imperial Russia as a supplier of grains during the period of capitalist restoration under modern revisionism from the late 1950s onwards. All-out neoliberal reforms which dismantled the structures of public service (including free education and health service) pushing down the people’s standards of living have been carried out since the breakup of the USSR in 1991 and, especially since the installation of a US puppet regime after the 2014 “revolution.”

The people of Ukraine are being made to suffer from interimperialist conflict between the US and its NATO allies, and Russia. The progressive and revolutionary forces in Ukraine and across the world must arouse, organize and mobilize the people to demand an end to US warmongering and provocation in Ukraine and demand the imperialist powers to negotiate and reach a peaceful settlement of their conflicts.

US provocations and Russian bullying in Ukraine is a portent of even worse forms of armed conflict amid rising contradictions between imperialist powers.

The global capitalist crisis is pushing imperialist countries to redivide the world to expand their own spheres of investment and influence. While the imperialists are raising walls to protect their own national economies, they are more aggressively pushing for neoliberal reforms in the semicolonial and semifeudal countries and less developed capitalist countries to allow them to expand their plunder and intensify the exploitation and oppression of workers and other toiling people. This is creating ever more favorable conditions for the proletariat to carry out revolutionary struggles for national liberation and socialism.

US & NATO mastermind and engineer armed conflict between Russophobe Ukranian regime and Russia

By | 03/21/2022

It is a matter of history that the Soviet modern revisionists from Khruschov to Gorbachov and Yeltsin had the illusion that, if the Soviet Union took the road of capitalist restoration, bourgeois populism and bourgeois pacifism, the Cold War and the threat of a nuclear war would end, Russia would go back to the European homeland, join the Council of Europe and enjoy the “dividends” of peace like the US and its NATO partners.

Thus, Russia, Belarus and Ukraine as the founders of the Soviet Union decided to co-sign the original Minsk Agreement in 1991 in order to dissolve the Soviet Union and form the ephemeral Commonwealth of Independent States in exchange for the assurances of the US, NATO and the Organization of Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) that the human rights and democratic rights of the former Soviet republics, their peoples, various nationalities, institutions, parties, organizations and individuals would be respected and that NATO would not recruit from the former Warsaw Pact members and expand to the borders of Russia.

So soon after the original Minsk Agreement, the US and NATO started war in Europe by destroying Yugoslavia, turning so many former Warsaw Pact member-states into NATO members, setting up missile and anti-missile bases to threaten Russia with nuclear obliteration in a matter of minutes from Eastern Europe, expanding the NATO to the borders of Russia and instigating violent incursions into Russian territory and emboldening so-called color revolutions to facilitate the spread of arms sales and capital from the US and Western Europe.

The US and NATO masterminded, engineered and openly funded from the US embassy in Kyiv the Maidan protests in 2013 and the bloody coup d’etat against the pro-Russian government in 2014 in order to bring to power the Russian-hating Bandera-type fascists (the National Socialists of Ukraine), the political descendants of Nazis, and a new breed of Zionist fascists, all servile to the US and West European monopoly capitalism and the NATO. Thus was institutionalized a Russophobic and neo-fascist regime in Ukraine in 2014.

Why the delay in the US and NATO in making trouble in Ukraine, from 1991 to 2013-14? Modern Ukraine was created by the Bolsheviks soon after the October Revolution and became one of three republics (together with Russia and Belarus) that founded the Soviet Union or the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics in 1922. More than 22 per cent of the total Ukrainian population in 2014 was of Russian nationality, who have comprised the majority in the Donbass region since pre-Soviet times and were either a majority or significant minority in major cities because Russian engineers and industrial workers had migrated to Ukraine to help in its industrialization in the time of the Soviet Union.

Upon coming to power in 2014, the Russophobic, chauvinist and fascist rulers in Kyiv engaged in acts of discrimination (including prohibition of the Russian language in Russian communities) and violent attacks against Ukrainian citizens of Russian nationality, including military offensives against the Donbass region and vigilante attacks in a number of major cities. Since 2014, the Ukrainian fascists have been able to kill so many Russians and destroy their homes and workplaces and cause the reduction of the overall Russian population in Ukraine from more than 22 to 17 per cent (or by more than three million) by forcing them to seek refuge in Russia and other countries as refugees.

The predominant Russian people of the Donbass region have suffered the main brunt of fascist attacks. In unilateral acts of aggression, the Kyiv chauvinists and fascists have killed more than 14,000 people (mostly civilians) in the last eight years. Out of these, more than 7.5 thousand cases have been filed against the Kyiv authorities in the European Court of Human Rights. Homes, factories, schools, hospitals and other social infrastructure have been destroyed by artillery fire and bombs. And yet the US and EU imperialists deny and obscure these facts as they harp on the line that Russia is the aggressor to Ukraine.

Under the direction of the US and NATO, the purpose of the fascist attacks on the Russians in the Donbass region and other parts of Ukraine is not only to unleash anti-Russian chauvinism but to denigrate and insult Russia as impotent against the relentless NATO expansion. But the Russian people in the Donbass region have courageously resisted and established the People’s Republics of Donetsk and Lugansk in accordance with the principle of national self-determination, despite US and fascist slander against them as “terrorists” and “fascists”.

As a consequence of the violent attacks of the Kyiv fascists on Russian citizens of Ukraine, the overwhelming Russian population in the Crimean Peninsula decided in a referendum to take it back from Ukraine to Russia. This peninsula was a gift of Krushchov to Ukraine in 1954 in order to let it have an outlet to the Black Sea. After all, the Soviet Union was still existent. Russia’s lawful recovery of the Crimean Peninsula became the reason for the US and its G-7 partners to remove Russia from the G-8 and impose sanctions on Russia.

Because of the heroic resistance of the people’s republics of Donetsk and Lugansk and because of the limited but highly potential support of Russia, the Ukrainian fascists and their US and NATO sponsors agreed to the Minsk II agreement of 2015 (Package of Measures for the Settlement of the Conflict) which recognized the autonomy of said people’s republics, provided for ceasefire and prohibited the Kyiv fascists from bringing heavy artillery and other weapons at a certain distance from the Donbass region.

But under the instigation of the US and NATO, the Kyiv fascists have constantly violated the ceasefire under Minsk II agreement and attacked the Donbass region, using weapons supplied by the US and NATO. In recent months and weeks before the current special military operation to destroy military facilities in Ukraine, the Kyiv fascists shelled daily the civilian communities of Donbass and used attack drones, heavy equipment, missiles, artillery and multiple launch rocket systems. The killing of civilians, the blockade, the abuse of people, including children, women and the elderly have not stopped.

Despite constant and repeated reminders of Russia to the US and NATO through the NATO-Russia Council and the OSCE, the US and NATO have aggressively accessed Ukraine to the NATO in practical terms and in brazen violation of the original Minsk Agreement and other related agreements. The US and NATO have integrated in the its command and control system the armed forces of Ukraine and have actually used Ukrainian airfields and other military bases close to the borders of Russia and Belarus to engage in military training and exercises and install equipment for surveilling and threatening the two neighbors of Ukraine deep within their own territories.

The US and NATO have obstinately designated Russia as their enemy despite Putin’s repeated offers of a new agreement to limit the strengthening of security by a state or international organization at the expense of the security of others. As late as December 2021, the Russian Federation handed over to its supposed Western partners a draft agreement between itself and the US on security guarantees as well as a draft agreement on security measures with NATO member states. But the US and NATO were already obsessed with a blitzkrieg to attack the Donbass region and provoke Russia. Since then or even earlier, Russian and the people’s republics have been forewarned of the aggressive plan of the US and NATO.

In the current time of the Biden presidency, the US and the UK have been the most aggressive in providing weapons and military training to the armed forces of the Kyiv regime, issuing provocative statements against Russia and accusing it of invading the Ukraine long before the current special military operation declared by Russia. In fact, the Russian military forces stayed within their own territory before the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation and Putin took the long overdue step of recognizing the independence and sovereignty of the People’s Republics of Donetsk and Lugansk on February 21, 2022 and ratifying the Treaties of Friendship and Mutual Assistance with said republics on the ground that the Ukrainian fascists and US and NATO sponsors have themselves wantonly violated and nullified the Minsk agreements.

Even as the US and all its NATO partners take a common posture of opposing Russia and supporting the fascist-ruled Ukraine, the US has its very own interests that only its British valet can best understand and agree with. It has been making the war provocations against Russia in Ukraine in order to assert and reinvigorate its hegemony over NATO and Europe, promote its own economic, political and military interests, favor its own oil and fracking interests, stop the Nord Stream 2 and prevent Germany and other West European countries from accessing gas from Russia and advance the geopolitical and hegemonic interests of the US in its inter-imperialist contradictions with Russia and China.

Many people are apprehensive that a direct inter-imperialist war can arise between Russia and the US-NATO combine as a result of hostilities between Russia and Ukraine, especially because the former has advantages over the latter in a war short of using nuclear weapons. But there are certain factors that are at work to determine calculated and measured steps by all sides. Among these factors are the contradictory interests of the US and the European Union in economic and political relations with Russia as well as with China and the still valid fear of mutually assured destruction in a nuclear war.

Short of a nuclear war, Russia has a clear advantage over the US and even NATO in fighting the Ukrainian fascists and supporting the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics and the people of Russian nationality within Ukraine in terms of conventional war, economic tit-for-tat and diplomacy. In the rivalry of two imperialist powers, Russia has been relatively more sober and calculating while the US has been more frantic, provocative and aggressive in matters pertaining to Russia and Ukraine.

Following its recognition of the sovereignty and independence of the People’s Republics of Donetsk and Lugansk and complying with the Treaties of Friendship and Mutual Assistance, Russia has declared a special military operation against the Ukrainian fascists, coalesced with the military forces of the aforesaid people’s republics and is now demonstrating the foolhardiness of the US-NATO and its Ukrainian fascist puppets in unleashing Russophobic attacks since 2014, drumming up war provocations and threatening to widen the scale of war to the borders and territory of Russia.

After all its arrogance and braggadocio that it can be at the head of NATO and fight Russia in Ukraine and thereabouts, the US has been totally exposed as impotent in the face of the coalition of the Russia and the people’s republics of Donetsk and Lugansk. It has responded by merely calling on all its NATO allies to be ready for attacking Russia on all borders. At the same time, the US, NATO and the Group of 7 are expected to impose further sanctions on Russia and further exacerbate inter-imperialist contradictions. But Russia like China has already prepared counter-sanctions which can have adverse effects on the US and the European Union.

I am most concerned that since 2014 the US and NATO have brought about in Ukraine a regime that is extremely oligarchic, chauvinist and fascist, oppressive and exploitative of the people of Ukraine, including those of Ukrainian, Russian and mixed Ukrainian-Russian nationalities. And yet this fact has been deliberately obscured by the US and NATO propaganda and overlooked by those who do not study and know the particularities of the Ukraine issue.

The people of Russian nationality within Ukraine have suffered the main brunt of fascist oppression and deserve the solidarity and support from all the peoples of the world and from all other possible forces supportive of their just cause. For supporting the Ukrainian people of Russian and other nationalities against the Ukrainian fascists, Russia proves itself in a better position than its US imperialist rival which has been prodding Ukraine to join the NATO in violation of the original Minsk agreement and supplying it with weapons and pushing it to make war provocations against Russia.

As a result of Russia’s special military operation in coalition with the people’s republics in the Donbass region, the offensive military capabilities of the Ukrainian fascists have been greatly degraded but these Russophobes are attacking Russian residential areas in Ukraine and misrepresenting the civilian victims in the press as Russian military troops. In the meantime, the US, NATO and the Group of 7 are reacting with vociferous statements and imposing further sanctions on Russia and further exacerbating inter-imperialist contradictions.

Nevertheless, it will take some more time and further developments before there can be an all-out war between US-NATO and Russia or the Russia-China tandem. Let us not forget that the US and its NATO allies have their own contradictions. For instance, it is not a small matter that the European Union gets 40 per cent of its energy supply from Russia. Germany and its ruling politicians will be taken to account by the German people for agreeing with the US to shut down the Nord Stream 2. The peoples in the other NATO member-countries in Western Europe will also complain that they are made to give up a cheaper source of energy than what the US wants to provide. This energy issue is only one of several major issues that put the EU in a disadvantageous position by the bellicosity and aggressiveness of the US.

The US will continue its strategic decline before it can plunge the world into an all-out war that can end the existence of humankind. It also remains to be seen how the European Union and people will assert their independence and attend to their own needs as the main protagonists in the new Cold War launched by US imperialism will adversely affect their respective interests in a world capitalist system that is already saturated by an excessive number of imperialist powers and whose multiple crises are rapidly worsening and driving the proletariat and people of the world to rise up in resistance.

Ang Bayan interview with CPP Information Officer Marco L. Valbuena on the CPP’s stand on the armed conflict in Ukraine

By | 03/21/2022

Some activists, friends and readers have raised the critical concern that the CPP did not clearly or roundly condemn Russia’s “invasion of Ukraine” in the two statements released before the “special military operation” of February 24 and the background article published on that day. There is the view that Russia, as an imperialist country, is as culpable as the US and its NATO allies for the escalation of the armed conflict in Ukraine. Or that Russia’s attacks against Ukraine serve only the interests of Russia’s oligarchs and should therefore be opposed by the working class in Russia and Ukraine and peoples across the world.

1. First of all, does the CPP consider Russia as imperialist?

Yes, Russia is an imperialist power, albeit much smaller than the US, Japan, China, Germany, France and other imperialist countries. As an imperialist country, Russia imposes its military, political and economic dominance on smaller countries particularly around its borders in Central Asia and Eastern Europe, most of which belonged to the Soviet Union (USSR) until it was dissolved in 1991.

Since the leadership of the Soviet Union was taken over by modern revisionists in 1953 who subsequently carried out capitalist restoration, capital and resources became more and more concentrated in the hands of state monopoly capitalists in Russia, the biggest state in the Soviet Union, at the expense of the smaller member states and areas of the Russian countryside, many of which were reduced to sources of cheap labor or raw materials (grain and minerals). They became dependent on Russian investments and imported commodities from Russia.

Russia perpetuates its hegemonic power through military power, and by the fact that it maintains one of the world’s biggest nuclear arsenals, which it inherited from the Soviet Union. In terms of military strength, Russia is second or third in the world, ranked behind the US, and around equivalent to the overall strength of China. It has almost the same amount of nuclear weapons as the US and is ahead in many fields of military technological research including the development of hypersonic weapons.

Military overspending combined with large-scale bureaucratic corruption and plunder by oligarchs and criminal groups, however, has depleted Russia’s economic resources. Despite being the largest country in the world in terms of land and has vast economic resources, it is not as big as the US or China in economic terms (it is ranked only 11th in the world in terms of GDP as estimated by the IMF in 2021, only 7% of the size of the US economy, and 9.7% of China) and depends largely on exporting oil and natural gas. The workers and people of Russia suffer from economic stagnation, widespread misery, worsening forms of exploitation and oppression, chronic unemployment, low wages and deteriorating socioeconomic conditions.

2. Does the CPP consider the armed conflict in Ukraine a result of inter-imperialist armed conflict?

The current armed conflict in Ukraine is within the context of rising inter-imperialist contradictions and armed conflict. It is a manifestation of the push of the US and its allied imperialist powers to redivide the world and take away from Russia its spheres of influence, investment and trade; and the counter-push of Russia to preserve the current order and recover its lost spheres.

Russia’s sphere of influence has been systematically and violently eroded by the US-led NATO alliance since the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, starting with the US-NATO-initiated war and destruction of Yugoslavia, and expansion of NATO in former Warsaw Pact countries in central Europe (Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, Lithuania, Poland) and eastern Europe, right up to the borders of Russia. This is in flagrant violation of the Minsk Agreement of 1991 which dissolved the USSR and which involved assurances of the US, NATO and OSCE that the Warsaw Pact members would not be converted to NATO members. Even those who celebrated the 1991 Minsk Agreement as a landmark achievement for ending the Cold War and the threat of nuclear war are appalled at how it has been systematically violated by the US and NATO.

Since 1991, the US and NATO have established military facilities and missile and anti-missile bases in Poland, the Czech Republic and Romania, in addition to those in Alaska bordering Russia. In 2019, the US trashed the intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) agreement with Russia further paving the way for expansion of the US and NATO’s missile system.

3. What are the specific circumstances that gave rise to the current armed conflict in Ukraine?

While it is important to understand the armed conflict in Ukraine as within the context of rising inter-imperialist conflict, we must proceed to grasp its particular characteristics, the main aspects of the conflict and the principal aspect of the armed conflict.

We must understand that Ukraine is the last frontier in the US imperialist drive to surround Russia with its intermediate-range ballistic missiles. The US has spent at least $4 billion in military assistance to Ukraine since 1991, with over $2.5 billion since the 2014 coup. The country has also received more than $1 billion in military aid from the NATO Trust Fund. In addition, the United Kingdom has forged agreements with Kyiv, in which the UK would spend 1.5 billion pounds for upgrading Ukraine’s naval capabilities and arming its warships with British missiles, and building naval military bases on the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov bordering Ukraine, Crimea and Russia.

Having eroded Russia’s sphere of influence in central and eastern Europe since 1991, US imperialism and its NATO allies proceeded to push its drive to establish their military dominance in Ukraine and complete its network of missile bases surrounding Russia. In 2014, the US instigated a coup in Ukraine and installed a neo-Nazi regime. It did so by funding and arming far-right groups under the so-called Azov Battalion that was formed in 2014 from such groups as the Patriot of Ukraine and Social National Assembly. These groups trace their roots to the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) of Stepan Bandera, and the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, that were both allied with Nazi Germany.

Widespread protests by people in south and eastern Ukraine, as well as in Crimea, against the US-sponsored coup was violently suppressed by the neo-Nazi Ukrainian regime combined with the forces of the Azov Battalion. It proceeded to mount attacks against the predominantly Russian population in Crimea and the Donbass region marked by gross violations of human rights, war crimes, mass looting, unlawful detention and torture. The United Nations Commission on Human Rights estimates around 14,000 people were killed in massacres and artillery shelling.

The Russophobic attacks against the Donbass region instigated the people to mount an armed resistance and seek the support of Russia. By April 2014, the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Lugansk People’s Republic were declared to have been established, further strengthened by a referendum on May 11, 2014. In 2014 and 2015 negotiations between Ukraine, Russia, Germany and France in Minsk, the Donbass region was recognized as an autonomous area under Ukraine, all foreign troops were withdrawn, and a “line of contact” was established on which either side will not enter or cross.

4. What is the status of the 2014 and 2015 ceasefire agreements around the Donbass region?

The attacks against the people of the Donbass region did not cease after the Minsk 2014 and 2015 agreements with repeated violations by Ukraine which has fortified its forces along the so-line of contact area. This year alone, monitoring organizations have recorded 8,000 violations of the agreement, largely from the Ukrainian side.

US weapons, military advisers and private contractors have been deployed around the Donbass area to arm, train and instigate Ukrainian military forces in mounting attacks against the people of Donetsk and Lugansk. The immediate objective of the US is to provoke Russia in order to justify its heightened military intervention and military financing in Ukraine, push for Ukraine’s inclusion into the NATO, and compel Germany and other allies in Europe to cancel trade agreements with Russia, specifically against the operations of the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline.

Russia and the predominantly Russian people of Donbass have been making repeated calls for negotiations to revisit the 2014 and 2015 Minsk agreements in order to ensure their implementation by making its provisions more explicit. Russia’s show of force since December in its western border area was a direct call for negotiations to revisit the Minsk agreements and forge new agreements to ensure security of the Donbass regions, and to push for clear prohibitions against Ukraine’s inclusion into the NATO.

Provoked by the US, Ukraine ignored calls for negotiations. Instead, it intensified attacks against Donetsk and Lugansk on February 21 firing 1,500 artillery rounds within 24 hours hitting civilian infrastructure, including power plants, water systems and school buildings.

These brazen acts prompted the DPR and LPR to declare secession from Ukraine as the only recourse to put an end to their oppression. These also heightened calls for Russia to recognize the DPR and LPR and independent nation states both from within the Donbass region, from Belarus and inside Russia. Russia formally recognized the DPR and LPR on February 22 and immediately deployed “peacekeeping” troops to fortify defenses of the Donbass region against Ukrainian attacks, then subsequently mounted a “special military operation.”

The declared objective of the “special military operations” mounted by Russia in Ukraine concerns primarily the struggle of the people of the Donbass region which has now taken the form of their defense of their right to national self-determination.

5. The CPP has condemned the US for provoking war in Ukraine? Are not both the US and Russian imperialists, in fact, equally to blame for the current armed conflict in Ukraine?

Indeed, the CPP has previously issued statements denouncing US war provocations and warmongering in Ukraine, specifically its frenzied attacks against the Donbass region to provoke Russia. It has also denounced the NATO expansion to the borders of Russia, as well as US-NATO intrusions and trouble making in Chechnya and Georgia, the so-called color revolutions. The aggressive acts of the US and NATO against Russia have been long-running and continuing.

The CPP considers the current armed conflict principally as a direct result of the heightened attacks of the Ukrainian armed forces, under the instigation by the US and planned with US military advisers, against the people in the Donbass region.

Russia’s military actions in Ukraine are not unprovoked. The CPP considers Russia’s action, tactically, as a counter-reaction to the incessant US-supported military provocations and attacks against Donbass. The escalation of the armed conflict could have been avoided had Ukraine heeded calls for it to stop the attacks against Donbass and engage in new negotiations. The CPP, however, is aware that Russia’s support for the Donbass region is motivated by its strategic imperialist interests of securing and expanding its hegemonic interests.

If we are to blame and condemn the US and Russia with equal weight for the escalation of the armed conflict in the region, we would have undermined the justness of the struggle for national self-determination of the people of Donetsk and Lugansk, the valiant armed resistance of the people of Donbass and their effort to take advantage of the inter-imperialist conflict by winning the support of Russia. It will also make the people of Donbass culpable for asking Russia to help repel Ukrainian aggression.

As a matter of fact, it is reasonable to criticize Russia and Putin for being so late in extending sufficient support to the peoples of Donetsk and Lugansk. For eight years, it allowed the Russophobic fascists to slaughter 14,000 Ukraine-born Russians, the destruction of their factories, homes, schools, hospitals and public utilities and the forced migration of millions of Russians, thus reducing the Russian population share in Ukraine from 22% in 2014 to 17% in 2022.

The people of Donetsk and Lugansk must stand firmly for their right to national self-determination and adopt a foreign policy that is consistent with their national interests. While winning the support of Russia, the people’s republics of Donetsk and Lugansk must also stand firmly against Russian hegemonism and demand equal treatment as independent nation states. But only the US-NATO imperialists and Trotskyites would demand right now for the people of Donetsk and Lugansk to fight Russia’s “invasion” which is helping them to fight the Kyiv fascist puppets of the US and NATO.

6. Does this mean the CPP considers Russia’s “special military operation” against Ukraine justified because of its declared aims of ending the attacks against the people of the Donbass region?

From the point of view of the national revolutionary war of the people of Donetsk and Lugansk, Russian military support is justified and necessary. Prior to Russia’s direct support, they were practically being butchered by Ukraine’s US-supported military forces which have shown outright disregard for all previous international agreements.

The CPP, however, is also keenly aware that Russia is an imperialist power that is driven by its hegemonic aims and drive to defend and expand its spheres of influence and control. While Russia declares its “special military operation” as congruent with the objective of the Donbass people to put an end to Ukraine’s attacks, it is motivated primarily by its imperialist objective of defending its sphere of influence and strategic aim of reinstalling a client-state in Ukraine.

If Russia will stick to its declarations of hitting only military targets and not occupying territory, its actions can be considered defensive and retaliatory which are generally acceptable under international rules of war. It will be Russia’s own lookout if it has not learned any lesson from both the Soviet social-imperialist aggression and occupation in Afghanistan in the 1980s and from the US wars of aggression and occupation since the end of World War II which have been frustrated by people’s resistance but which have caused the death 25 to 30 million as well self-defeating costs for the US that have accelerated its strategic decline.

There are information that Russian military forces are pushing beyond the Donbass region, and occupying Ukrainian territory reportedly prompted by the massacre of Russians in the Kharkiv region by the forces of the Akov Battalion.

The CPP joins in appeals to the Ukrainian people to demand a stop to the Russophobic fascist attacks and to demand their government to respect and protect the Ukrainians of Russian nationality in the various cities of Ukraine in and beyond the Donbass region.

At the same time, the CPP supports their fight to defend their country’s sovereignty and in the demand for Russia to suspend its military offensives, withdraw its forces as soon as possible, and pave the way for dialogue and peaceful resolution of the conflict.

7. Russia’s attacks against Ukraine are now on its fifth day. There are news of civilian casualties and residential apartments damaged by rocket fire. People in Kyiv and other areas are evacuating in droves. On the other hand, Russia insists that civilians are not being targeted and claims to have eliminated 975 Ukrainian military facilities, and shooting down jets, helicopters and drones. In light of these developments, what is the CPP’s call?

In times of intense armed conflict, the fog of war thickens, and actual facts on the ground become hard to determine in real time. Both sides are expected to heighten their propaganda offensive to support their military objectives. Even the widely-circulated photograph of an apartment in Kyiv damaged by missile fire is unverified and disputed: Ukraine claims it was hit by a Russian missile, while there are information that it was damaged by a Ukrainian missile or anti-missile rocket that misfired.

Faced with Russia’s blitzkrieg attacks, Kyiv publicly lamented that it was “left alone” to fight and declared openness to dialogue to discuss Ukraine’s “neutrality” and other issues. This was followed by Russia’s order to suspend military operations on February 25.

However, the US imperialists and its allies intensified its intervention with the US decision to extend $600 million military aid to Ukraine. The US also succeeded in pushing Germany to send tanks and other weapons contrary to its own policy of not sending weapons to conflict areas. This has apparently emboldened the Zelensky government to return to its previous bellicose position and abandon the planned negotiations. Russia’s response was to resume its attacks.

The CPP welcomes fresh news that lines of dialogue remain open and that Ukraine has proposed to meet with Russian officials in the Belarussian city of Gomel, and that Russia has declared it will be sending its delegation. The talks are set to start today. Russia, however, said it will not suspend again its military attacks during the upcoming dialogue.

The CPP urges Russia to suspend its military offensives against Ukraine in order to increase the chances of success of the talks and the Kyiv authorities to stop their offensive against the people of the Donbass region as well as the attacks on Russians by its Russophobic territorial units and neo-Nazi vigilante groups like the Azov Battalion against Russian apartments and communities.

Most importantly, the CPP calls on the US and its allies in the NATO to put an end to intervening and provoking Ukraine to escalate the war, and let the dialogue between the two countries proceed and seek to resolve the conflict through peaceful negotiations to discuss the issues being raised by both sides.

The CPP calls on the workers and people of Ukraine to demand an end to the genocidal war against the people in the Donbass region, resist Russian aggression, oppose US and NATO intervention and fight for their country’s neutrality in the face of rising conflicts among the hegemonic powers.

The CPP calls on the workers and people of Russia to strengthen support for the struggle for national self-determination of the people of the Donbass region and demand the Putin government to immediately suspend its military offensives against Ukraine, extend solidarity with the democratic people of Ukraine and advance their own struggles against the Russian oligarchs and ruling classes.

Briefly about the motives, justifications, goals and consequences of the special military operation (SMO) of Russia in Ukraine

By | 03/17/2022

The question of the motives for the operation should not really be asked of Russia, because Russia was not that who chose here. The operation was forced by the following circumstances:

  • Ukraine’s ongoing attacks on the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and the Luhansk People’s Republic (LNR), where, by the way, almost a million citizens of the Russian Federation live;
  • NATO’s continued expansion to the east;
  • President Zelensky’s statement on the possibility of withdrawing from the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (Budapest Memorandum).
  • The real manager of this conflict was undoubtedly another country, namely the United States. On the one hand, it is well known that the Ukrainian government is subordinate to the United States. On the other hand, the United States is the only obvious beneficiary of the conflict, since it has made no secret of its desire to disrupt the opening of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. As you can see, it all ties up: this conflict is organized from beginning to end by US imperialism, its NATO satellites and the puppet nationalist Ukrainian regime. Russia’s military response was entirely forced is still defensive.

    Many base their criticism of the SMO on an analysis of Putin’s speech of February 21 as anti-communist. Let me explain. Undoubtedly, Putin is an anti-communist – like any other bourgeois politician. But there is a difference between the anti-communism of the regime in Moscow and the regime in Kyiv. The latter intentionally and systematically puts anti-communism at the core of their national identity. The difference here is the same as between petty disorderly conduct and gangsterism.

    In addition, this Putin’s speech doesn’t contain any extraordinary anti-communism. Yes, he calls V. I. Lenin, with a hint of condemnation, the “creator and architect” of Soviet Ukraine, but he directly stipulates: “I am not trying to put the blame on anyone. The situation in the country at that time, both before and after the Civil War, was extremely complicated; it was critical”. It is strange when an anti-communist conservative (who has a rather narrow outlook) understands the historical dialectics better than the Marxist-Leninists who undertake to expose him.

    Then Putin said provocatively: “You want decommunization? Very well, this suits us just fine. But why stop halfway? We are ready to show what real decommunizations would mean for Ukraine.” It looks like a outright confession of anti-communism. However, for everyone who is familiar with the issue, it is obvious that Putin didn’t talk about his (really existing) anti-communism here, but only taunted Ukrainian nationalists (literally before that, he speaks with obvious disapproval about their demolition of Lenin’s monuments). You can, of course, take him at his word, but this is an infantile level of analysis.

    The goals of the SMO are also openly and clearly declared: “to protect civilians in Donbass, to ensure Kiev’s recognition of the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics as well as Russia’s sovereignty over Crimea, to demilitarise and denazify Ukraine, and to secure its neutral and nuclear-free status.”

    Now tell me which of these goals is unjust or reactionary?

    Of course, if the Ukraine stubbornly refuses to comply with these just demands, it will be completely crushed, and then the Russian bourgeoisie will not fail to add unjust and predatory claims beyond that. This is what the fascist and militaristic Kyiv regime is now leading its country to. His persistence in waging an unjust war is a real national betrayal! All progressive forces should demand that the Zelensky regime immediately agree to fair conditions and establish peace.

    What will be the consequences of the success of the SMO? Of course, there is no question of an immediate advance towards socialism or the establishment of some kind of “people’s” regimes. Those naive people who pompously expose the imperialism of Russia and the capitalism of the DPR and LPR are forcing an open door. It’s about something completely different. Of course, the Russian capitalists are driven by the desire for profit, but now their interests have temporarily coincided with the immediate interests of the proletariat and the people. First, national oppression will be significantly reduced in the region. Secondly, the fascist neo-Banderist (Stepan Bandera was a Ukrainian Nazi leader, glorified by the modern Ukrainian regime) regime will fall. Third, NATO expansion will be halted and partly pushed back. All these changes will be favorable for security and peace in the region, as well as for the development of the socialist movement.

    The last thing that needs to be said here is about the Russian alleged “peace movement”. Here you need to understand, firstly, that this movement isn’t genuine popular, it is under the domination of liberals, who give it an anti-communist and pro-NATO nature. The communists lose face by participating in it. Secondly, its demand to stop the SMO actually now means the capitulation of Russia, the surrender of the Donbass to neo-Banderists butchering, preparations for the imminent surrender of Crimea and the unstoppable expansion of NATO. Under the slogans “for peace” there is in fact a movement for an imperialist war. And if we raise the question of turning the imperialist war into a civil one, then it “suddenly” turns out that these hypocrites are “not ready” and suggest that the peoples of the world simply wait until they gain proper strength.

    But after all, when gangster attack you, you call the bourgeois police, and do not relax and wait for a socialist revolution, don’t you? Be adequate and apply Marxist dialectics, please!


    Read also the analysis of events in the Donbass from the Communist Party of the Philippines:

On Nationalism Among Nepalese Communists

By | 03/16/2022

On December 27, 2015, the Russian Maoist Party (RMP) sent a letter to International Coordination of Revolutionary Parties and Organizationa (ICOR) “To the ICOR Office on some questions of the end of 2015”, which reads in part:

“We entirely support this draft (resolution against the blockade of Nepal and Rojava) regarding Rojava. But we are rather well informed on Rojava thanks to frequent and diligent informing by the ICOR Office. On the contrary, we know almost nothing about current blockade of Nepal. On this question within the ICOR there was only single letter from the Nepal Communist Party (Mashal) (of October, 11th, or November, 10th, 2015 (it was not obvious, what date was meant: ‘Brief NCP/Mashal vom 11.10.15’)). It has been written by so negligent and chaotic English language that we could not understand it well and translate to Russian. We appealed to the ICOR Office via comrade Dorothea Jauernig for an explanation of a point (on December, 18th, 2015) but have not received any answer yet. Therefore our idea of this situation remains extremely rough. Something in the Mashal letter causes alarm concerning their position on issues of national equality and the right of the nations on self-determination. Therefore we (and, as we suppose, other member organisations of the ICOR) are not ready to make public statements on this problem.

We would like to clear following questions:

  • Does NCP (Mashal) support electoral discrimination of the Madeshi nation in Terai region? As we have understood, the new constitution gives them fewer constituencies, than it would be proportionally to the population. Does Mashal considers it as fair, correct and non-infringing against the Madeshi nation?

  • Does NCP (Mashal) support making difficulties for persons of the Indian origin in reception of Nepalese citizenship and any discrimination of Nepalese citizens of the Indian origin concerning appointment to the state office?

  • Does NCP (Mashal) oppose the rights of the Madeshi nation to self-determination in the form of federalisation and autonomy or secession? What is general Mashal stand on the right of the nations on self-determination?”

After that, in February 2016, the Nepalese party responded to us with a “note on the political situation in the Terai” signed by Mohan Bikram Singh. Unfortunately, the original text of this note has been lost, so here it is given in a reverse translation from Russian. If you’re worried that accuracy might be seriously affected by doing this, see Singh’s later article linked below, which has similar content.

So, a note on the political situation in the Terai:

“The situation with Terai, also called Madhesh, is very complicated. Terai is the southern part of Nepal, surrounded by India from the east, south and west. It takes a little expiation to understand the real situation with the Terai.

India has been adopting an expansionist policy towards Nepal for decades. First, Nepal is one of the richest countries in the world in terms of water resources. India wants to monopolize Nepal’s water resources. Secondly, they want to annex the Terai from Nepal. Finally, India wants to make Nepal into Sikkim, or a part of itself like Sikkim.

India used various methods to achieve these goals, of which the proposal to amend the constitution to provoke the Madesh people to organize the Terai movement and the blockade known today. Decades earlier, Madesh political organizations had been formed to work for India’s expansionist policies in Nepal. The Terai people are commonly referred to as the Madhesi, although they make up only less than a third of the total Terai population, the other two thirds being Tharu and people who immigrated from the northern highlands. However, a clear distinction should be made between Madesh and Madeshabadi. The Madeshi are part of the Terai people that have been oppressed and exploited for centuries. The Madeshabadi are a handful of people who mostly immigrated from India. Many of them are naturalized citizens of Nepal. Their main goal is to work for India’s expansionist goals in Nepal.

The current controversy between Nepal and India arose after the constitution of Nepal was adopted by the Constituent Assembly on September 16, 2015. After this constitution was formally issued, a seven-point amendment proposal was put forward by India. India denies making such a proposal. But this is a well-known reality, detailed by the Indian magazine India Today. Madhesh organizations organized a movement to force the government to accept these amendments. India used the blockade against Nepal to force the government to accept these amendments. What are the main of these amendments?

The current constitution of Nepal is not entirely consistent with India’s expansionist goals. Therefore, it wants to make some fundamental amendments. Following the instructions of India, the Madeshabadi emphasize in relation to it that the two Pradesh (provinces) in the general system should be formed in the Terai, completely separate from the land of the highlands. They also demand that these Pradesh have the right to self-determination. Obviously, the goal behind the demand for two separate provinces is to annex the Terai from Nepal through the right to self-determination. They also require that all naturalized citizens have the right to be elected or nominated to the highest offices of President, Prime Minister, Speaker of Parliament, Commander-in-Chief, Chief Minister of Pradesh, etc., which is prohibited by the current constitution. It is worth mentioning here that Sonia Gandhi herself was not allowed to become the Prime Minister of India, although her party won a majority in Parliament.

Their well-known demand is that all constituencies should be determined only on the basis of population. According to the current constitution, both geography and population must be taken into account when determining districts. They also demand that the Terai have majoritarian parliamentary constituencies. Although Terai has about 51% of the country’s population, it includes only 17% of the entire country’s area. One way or another, in this way they want to get a majority in parliament, which will allow them to decide to transfer all the water resources of Nepal to Indian control, annex the Terai, annex Nepal to a second Sikkimal, etc. The proposal put forward by India is guided by these expansionist goals.

The constitution as a whole is not popular, so we have many fundamental differences with it. But it does not discriminate against the Terai in the sense that India or the Madeshabadi put this question. It discriminates against them because it does not fully contribute to Indian aspirations. We are against the formation of Pradesh in the Terai, completely separate from the highlands. Shaping the Pradesh constitution in this way will serve India’s plans to annex the Terai from Nepal and thus the long term will be against the national interests, sovereignty and integrity of Nepal.

We will be happy to answer your questions if you have any.”

On June 2, 2016, RMP sent the  letter to ICOR “On the Political Situation of Tarai (for NCP (Mashal) and M.B.Singh)”:

  1. “We would like to see proofs that India rose any ultimatums against the constitution of Nepal. The single reference to the India Today is totally insufficient. Could we see a specific article (a link to article) on this issue? Also, we would like to see the exact text of these amendments.

  2. It is unclear does NCP (Mashal) recognize the right of Madeshi to self-determination. We would like to see direct and unambiguous answer for this question.

  3. Described by M.B. Singh demarcation between Madeshi and Madeshabadi is not clear at all. What is the ethnic, linguistic and class character of these groups? Why the ‘main objective (of Madeshbadis) is to work to fulfill the expansionist objectives of India in Nepal’? What determines their stands?

  4. If pro-Indian Madeshabadi is really only a ‘handful of persons’, a handful of immigrants, why you need any constitutional restrictions for people Madeshi? Who is the majority in the two pradeshes, which formation Madeshabadi seek of – Madeshabadi or Madeshi? Why Madeshabadi’s right to be elected or nominated to the highest posts is a such threat to Nepal, when the election or nomination is made in a democratic way? Could the majority of Nepal voters or MPs indeed ‘to work to fulfill the expansionist objectives of India in Nepal’? How proportional system could lead to Madeshabadi’s victory? Whether they dispose the support of the majority of the Nepal population or of Terai population?

  5. A situation when some citizens are deprived of the right to be elected to the state posts and have a smaller share of parliamentary seats than their share in the population surely is discrimination. If ‘51% of the population of the country’ have less than half of the seats in parliament then it is obvious discrimination. We can not accept the unsubstantiated allegation that it isn’t such thing. Not square kilometers but only the living are the source of sovereignty. We also can not accept the reference to the case of Sonia Gandhi in India, since we never considered India a model democracy. Why Nepal should follow India’s example?

We will be glad if you find really compelling and complete explanation.”

After that, the readiness expressed by Singh to answer questions disappeared somewhere. In the end, we were informed through ICOR (July 12, 2016):

«They told us that they have been busy with many current political tasks and unfortunately they need some more time for an answer, because it requires details and cannot be a simple one».

Six months later, Singh published an article “The Current Political Situation in Nepal in the Context of the Constitutional Amendment Bill”. He revealed what he wrote in the note, but did not answer essentially the questions we asked.

Singh’s position is clear: he does not trust the majority of the Madhesi people and the population of the Terai region, but he cannot say this directly. Therefore, he breathes thunder and lightning at the Madhesi political groups, combining this with support for discriminatory measures against the entire Madhesi people. This is obvious chauvinism.

In 2019–2020, another conflict flared up, highlighting the nationalism of the Masal party. First, it pushed through a resolution “on encroachment in Nepal by India”, which was uncritically supported by the majority of ICOR. Then its position was further stated in the statement “On Kalapani, Lipulekha and Limpiyadhura”.

Let’s consider the history of the issue. In 1791, Nepal invaded and captured the Indian kingdom of Kumaon, of which the Kalapani territory is a part. A quarter of a century later, it was taken by the British. This means that there can be no talk of any “original rights” of Nepal to these lands. There is no settled population in these places, but Byansi cattle graze here in the summer, descending to cities such as Dharchula in India for the winter. This means that it is also impossible to talk about the self-determination of the people of this land.

The real reason for Nepal’s claim to Kalapani is obvious. Now Nepal has the Tinkar Pass. If it also would receive the Lipulekh and Limpyadhura passes, he could monopolize the Indo-Tibetan communication in this area. These passes have always been used by the Biansi to trade with Tibet. Now, with the growth of trade and tourist flow, the associated profits have risen. The desire o  Nepal to collect bribes from passing traders and tourists is understandable. It is not clear what grounds the communists have to fight for the redistribution of territorial rent and the establishment of a monopoly of means of communication. Such claims are purely nationalist.

Solidarity with the struggle of the Colombian people

By | 07/24/2021

On July 4th, 2021), the communists of Moscow – the Moscow Maoists, their comrades from UCP, “Workers’ compass”, and “The Communists of Russia” – as well as independent journalists – went to the Embassy of Colombia on Burdenko Street to express solidarity with the struggle of the Colombian people against the neoliberal “reforms” of President Ivan Duque.

Mass protests in Colombia have been going on for more than two months. In April of this year, President Duque decided to implement a tax reform, the essence of which was to raise taxes. It appeared as if the “reform” was done for a good purpose: to increase funding for the “Ingreso Solidario” social program. About 3 million Colombians receive payments under this program, and Duque wanted to expand it by another 1.7 million. The problem is that the financing of this program for the poor comes from the poor themselves: from excise taxes (taxes on consumer goods). Plus, this program covers only about one fifth of the total number of people in need of social benefits.

In addition to the tax reform, Duque also proposed a reform of the health care system, which is basically privatization. The Colombian government had been criticized for its inept fight against the pandemic, as a result of which the country ranked third in the number of deaths from coronavirus in Latin America. The Colombian economy fell by 6.8% in 2020, which is the worst performance in the last 50 years of its history, while unemployment rose to 14% of the working-age population.

As a result, on April 28, Colombian trade unions, led by the Central Council of Workers (CUT), formed a National Strike Committee, and mass protests began throughout the country.

The confrontation between the authorities, the police, the ESMAD (police special forces) on the one hand and ordinary Colombians on the other, claimed the lives of 77 people, with another 124 injured, 2808 detained. 304 people “disappeared”, and 106 women were raped. 74 people lost their eyes. President Duque withdrew the tax reform bill on May 2; however, he did not abandon the plans to carry it out in the future, so the protests continued. On June 15, the National Strike Committee decided to temporarily suspend the mass protests (in fact, they did not stop) until July 20, when the parliament session resumes to present its demands in the form of a petition.

The requirements formulated by the committee are as follows: to ensure the protection of the health of citizens and medical personnel during the pandemic; to carry out mass and timely vaccination of the population; to provide social benefits to 7.5 million people; to protect domestic producers in agriculture and industry; to ensure employment of the population; to ensure food independence of the country; to solve the problem of peasant debts; to increase wages and pensions; to ensure the availability of education; to pass laws that protect women; to abandon the policies of privatization.

The Moscow picket in support of the just demands by the Colombians was generally calm. Comrades lined up in a picket line in front of the embassy, which is located on a quiet street near the “Park of Culture” metro station. Comrades provided interviews and talked peacefully with the bypassing citizens. A cyclist said that a movie based on Bulgakov’s “The Master and Margarita” was being filmed further down the street. Soon, by some curious coincidence, one law enforcement officer appeared, and after that their number began to rapidly increase. Concentrating around comrade Sidorenkova, who was holding a poster, they apparently grew bolder and went on the offensive, demanding from her to leave. When asked: “On what grounds”? “Why a single picket should not be held”? – a police officer in the rank of captain refused to explain anything, and then said that the comrades had organized a “rally”, so they would all be taken away for “violation of sanitary standards”.

The policeman also tried to break the camera of the journalist who was filming his actions, but then he retreated. Upon that, the comrades finished holding the picket line.

The title of Ernest Hemingway’s book “For Whom the Bell Tolls” is taken from a quote from the English poet John Donne. Its meaning is that there is no separately standing person, as we are all part of humankind. Therefore, the American from his book went to the war in the distant Spain to stop fascism. The attack on the rights of workers and working people in any country also affects all of us, no matter we are. If such an attack works for the authorities in Colombia – it will also work for the authorities in Russia. And if it turns out that another wave of crazy “reforms” in Colombia is stopped – all of us will succeed. The problems around the world are mostly similar in their nature. Therefore, it is important to show solidarity with popular struggles in other countries. Together we will win! Hasta la victoria siempre!

Patriotism or National Betrayal? —On the Reactionary Film Inside Story of the Ching Court

By | 03/02/2021

“At no time since it was shown all over the country has the film ‘Inside Story of the Ching Court’ — described as patriotic though in fact a film of national betrayal — yet been criticized and repudiated.”

— Chairman Mao Tse-tung: “Letter on the Question of Studies on ‘The Dream of the Red Chamber’”

When that new day dawned over the east of the world in October 1949, the China that had been weighed down by calamities rose to its feet like a giant.

Guided by Mao Tse-tung’s thought, the Chinese people, after countless bitter struggles, finally threw off the three big mountains of imperialism, feudalism, and bureaucrat-capitalism and liberated the whole country.

The storm of the great people’s revolution was washing away the filth from the land of China. But the reactionary ruling classes, unreconciled to their doom, continued to mount frenzied, large-scale counterattacks in every field. The class struggle was very acute. On the cultural and ideological fronts it was especially complicated, and the reactionary films, plays, operas, songs, books, and journals that flooded the world of culture were important propaganda weapons in the big counterattacks carried out by the reactionary ruling classes against the revolutionary people. One of the most prominent examples was the reactionary film Inside Story of the Ching Court, which in 1950 was still being widely shown in Peking, Shanghai, and other cities.

What should be the attitude of the victorious Chinese people in face of these large-scale counterattacks by reactionary culture? Should they carry out a proletarian cultural revolution, or compromise, or surrender to the reactionary culture rampant in society? Every revolutionary comrade faced a new choice and test.

Around this reactionary film, the proletarian revolutionaries headed by Chairman Mao waged a serious struggle against a handful of Party people in authority taking the capitalist road. It was the first important struggle on the cultural and ideological fronts in liberated China.

Chairman Mao sternly pointed out: “The Inside Story of the Ching Court is a film of national betrayal and should be criticized and repudiated.” He also said: “Somebody called it patriotic; I consider it national betrayal, national betrayal through and through.” But the counterrevolutionary revisionists Lu Ting-yi and Chou Yang and a certain Hu, a standing vice director of the Propaganda Department of the Party’s Central Committee at that time, and others, as well as the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who was supporting them from behind, stubbornly clung to their bourgeois reactionary stand and openly opposed Chairman Mao’s directive. They asserted that this reactionary film was “patriotic” and refused to criticize and repudiate it.

Comrade Chiang Ching, then a member of a committee for guiding the work of the cinema under the Ministry of Culture, upheld the proletarian revolutionary line of Chairman Mao and at a number of meetings proposed that the film Inside Story of the Ching Court should be firmly criticized and repudiated. However, Lu Ting-yi, Chou Yang, Hu, and others vigorously opposed this proposal and did their best to advertise the “patriotic progressiveness” of this reactionary film. When Comrade Chiang Ching wanted to act according to Chairman Mao’s directive, they threw at her the reactionary talk of their boss behind the scenes, the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, and said: “Comrade so-and-so holds that it is a patriotic film.” Firmly upholding the truth, Comrade Chiang Ching stood her ground and in no uncertain terms refuting their reactionary and ludicrous statements insisted that the film should be criticized and repudiated. They had to give way, but perfunctorily appointed an historian of reactionary views to write a short fake criticism which was really aimed at shielding the film. They considered even such an article “too sharp,” and held up publication, thus smothering a major struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie on the cultural and ideological fronts.

In 1951, Chairman Mao personally led the struggle on the cultural and ideological fronts to criticize the reactionary film The Life of Wu Hsun. 1 In 1954, he initiated another major nationwide struggle, namely, the criticism of Yu Ping-po’s Studies on “The Dream of the Red Chamber” 2 and the reactionary ideas of Hu Shih. On October 16 of the same year, Chairman Mao wrote a letter to the comrades in the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Party and other comrades concerned, sternly criticizing certain “important people” in the Party who suppressed attacks by newborn forces against the bourgeoisie and were its willing captives. In his letter, Chairman Mao again raised the question of the reactionary film Inside Story of the Ching Court. Referring to the article written by two young men criticizing Studies on “The Dream of the Red Chamber,” Chairman Mao pointed out:

This is the first serious attack in thirty years and more on the erroneous views of the so-called authoritative writer in the field of the studies of’ The Dream of the Red Chamber. The authors are two Youth League members. First they wrote to the Wen I Pao [Literary Gazette], to ask whether it was all right to criticize Yu Ping-po, but they received no reply. Ignored by the Wen I Pao, they wrote to teachers at their alma mater—Shantung University—and got their support. Their article refuting A Short Study of “The Dream of the Red Chamber” was carried in the university journal Wenshizhe /Literature, History and Philosophy/. Then the problem came back again to Peking. Some people wanted this article to be reprinted in the Renmin Ribao, to arouse discussion and criticism. This was not done because certain people opposed it, giving various reasons (mainly that it was “an article written by unimportant people” and “the Party paper is not a platform for free debates”). As a compromise, the article was allowed to be reprinted in the Wen I Pao. Later, the “Literary Legacy” page of the Kuang Ming Jih Pao carried an article by the two young men refuting Yu Ping-po’s book, Studies on “The Dream of the Red Chamber.” It seems likely that the struggle is about to start against the bourgeois idealism of the school of Hu Shih which has been poisoning young people in the field of classical literature for the last thirty years and more. This struggle has been sparked by two “unimportant people,” while the “important people,” usually taking no notice of it or even obstructing it, advocate a united front on idealism with bourgeois writers and make themselves willing captives of the bourgeoisie. It was almost the same when the films Inside Story of the Ching Court and The Life of Wu Hsun were shown. At no time since it was shown all over the country has the film Inside Story of the Ching Court— described as patriotic though in fact a film of national betrayal—yet been criticized and repudiated. The Life of Wu Hsun has been criticized, but the lessons have not yet been drawn; now comes the bizarre situation when Yu Ping-po’s idealism is tolerated and vigorous critical essays by some “unimportant people” are obstructed. This warrants our attention.

Yet class struggle is independent of man’s will. Even after Chairman Mao put the question forward so sharply, the handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists headed by Lu Ting-yi and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who supported them from behind, still continued to cling to the bourgeois reactionary stand and stubbornly opposed Chairman Mao’s instructions. Twelve years have elapsed since 1954, but the Inside Story of the Ching Court, which is a reactionary, out-and-out traitorous film, remains uncriticized.

The unprecedented Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution has once again brought this question up.

Debts have to be paid sooner or later. In the present movement of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, this reactionary and completely traitorous film, which has remained uncriticized since the liberation, must be subjected to thorough criticism and repudiation by the revolutionary masses. The handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists who opposed Chairman Mao’s directive and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who supported them from behind, must also be thoroughly criticized and repudiated by the revolutionary masses during this movement. Accounts must be settled with them in full for their crimes of flagrantly opposing Chairman Mao’s proletarian revolutionary line and of recklessly opposing the Party and Mao Tse-tung’s thought. The revolutionary masses must overthrow this handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists, remove the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road from his position, and make him stand aside.

The reactionary film Inside Story of the Ching Court is a film with a so-called historical theme. It deals with the Reform Movement of 1898 and the struggle of the Yi Ho Tuan [Boxer] movement in the last years of the Ching Dynasty. It openly takes the stand of imperialism, feudalism, and the reactionary bourgeoisie, freely distorts historical facts, and prettifies imperialism, feudalism, and bourgeois reformism. While eulogizing the royalists, it slanders the revolutionary mass movement and the heroic struggle of the people against imperialism and feudalism and advocates national capitulation and class capitulation.

This reactionary film was made by the Yunghua Film Company, a reactionary film studio whose first film was The Soul of a Nation. This conjured up the phantom soul of Wen Tien-hsiang to revive the soul of the dying Chiang Kai-shek regime. The Inside Story of the Ching Court was its second production. The scenario writer Yao Ke is a reactionary scribbler who holds stubbornly to the counterrevolutionary stand. He once edited the reactionary monthly Tien Hsia, opposed the Chinese revolution, and actively served British-American imperialism and the comprador-bourgeoisie. Later he went over to the Kuomintang reactionaries and wrote a series of vulgar, reactionary plays. He was a small running dog of the reactionary ruling classes. On the eve of China’s liberation, he escaped to Hongkong. There is nothing strange in a reactionary anti-communist, antipopular, literary man writing such a reactionary scenario as Inside Story of the Ching Court. But it is indeed strange that the director and certain vice directors of the Propaganda Department of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party who donned the cloak of “Communists” and “proletarian revolutionaries,” and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who supported them from behind, should show such favour to this extremely reactionary, thoroughly traitorous film, extol it as “patriotic,” and actively serve as spokesmen for imperialism, feudalism, and the reactionary bourgeoisie. Doesn’t this call for deep thought?

On the question of the attitude to be adopted toward this reactionary, thoroughly traitorous film, what are the major differences in principle between the proletarian revolutionaries headed by Chairman Mao on the one hand and the handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who supported them from behind, on the other hand? To sum up briefly, there are three differences: namely, what should be one’s attitude toward imperialist aggression; toward the Yi Ho Tuan revolutionary mass movement; and toward bourgeois reformism?

What should be one’s attitude toward imperialist aggression?

The contradiction between imperialism and the Chinese people is a principal contradiction in modern Chinese society. Imperialism is the first and most ferocious enemy of the Chinese people. What attitude should one take toward imperialist aggression is a question of first importance for the revolution.

The reactionary film Inside Story of the Ching Court, praised as “patriotic” by a handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who supported them from behind, is, on the question of imperialist aggression, a perfect reflection of an utterly shameful and servile attitude of fear and worship of imperialism and pro-imperialism [sic].

It reveals a mortal fear of the imperialist aggression committed by the so-called “eight-power allied expedition” organized by Britain, the United States, Germany, Russia, Japan, France, Italy, and Austria. It assiduously spreads fear of imperialism, crying that “since the Sino-Japanese War of 1894, China has suffered financial losses, her armed forces are poorly equipped and weak, . . . and she is far inferior to the enemy in strength,” that “it must not start hostilities with any foreign country.” Hsu Ching-cheng, a high-ranking mandarin, is so scared of imperialism that he wails aloud.

Chairman Mao teaches us that, before the wild beasts of imperialism, revolutionary people must not show the slightest timidity. But in the eyes of the scenarist and those who praised the film, there is no alternative but to surrender helplessly to imperialist aggression—all this is naked national capitulation, the philosophy of traitors.

Moreover, the film painstakingly advocates worship of imperialism and pro-imperialism; it goes all out to spread illusions about imperialism and openly peddles the theory of national betrayal. Through the mouth of the emperor’s concubine Chen Fei, 3 an agent of imperialism in the film, the scenarist openly welcomes the imperialist aggression against China. Chen Fei puts it bluntly: “The foreign powers will certainly not blame Your Majesty”; “I am sure that the foreign powers will not harm Your Majesty, but on the contrary will help Your Majesty restore the throne and regenerate the imperial regime.” Sun Chia-nai, a high-ranking mandarin, also asserts: “The envoys of both the Eastern and Western Powers are sympathetic toward Your Majesty.” A comparison of this with the counterrevolutionary propaganda of the imperialists who committed aggression against China at the time, shows clearly that the film advocates just what the imperialists advocated. To deceive its people, tsarist Russia, for example, alleged that it was “not fighting against China,” “but merely putting down a riot, suppressing rebels, and helping China’s legitimate government to restore order.” In The War in China, his first article on China written as early as 1900, Lenin mercilessly refuted such counterrevolutionary arguments put forward by the aggressors.

What in fact is that “patriotism” in Inside Story of the Ching Court so extolled by the handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who supported them from behind? The “patriotism” they praised turns out to be the so-called “patriotism” of the Emperor Kuang Hsu and his ilk who did not hesitate to rely on imperialism to restore and consolidate their rule over the people, as is described in the film. After the Chinese people had overthrown the reactionary rule of imperialism and feudalism, they still continued to urge the people to learn the “patriotism” of becoming traitors in order to restore and consolidate the exploiting classes’ rule over the people. Such is their vicious intention!

Chairman Mao teaches us: “The specific content of patriotism is determined by historical conditions. There is the ‘patriotism’ of the Japanese aggressors and of Hitler, and there is our patriotism. Communists must resolutely oppose the ‘patriotism’ of the Japanese aggressors and of Hitler.” 4 Likewise, we must resolutely oppose the so-called “patriotism” (namely, an out-and-out theory of national betrayal) advocated by a handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road.

The traitorous argument about welcoming imperialism to help China “regenerate the imperial regime” advocated by the film is of the same stock as the gangster logic of U.S. imperialism. Singing the same tune as those imperialists did when they carried out aggression against China, ex-U.S. Secretary of State Acheson in his 1949 White Paper talked at length about U.S. “concern” for China and described aggression as “friendship.” In “Cast Away Illusions, Prepare for Struggle,” “‘Friendship’ or Aggression?” and other articles, Chairman Mao had already sternly rebutted such counterrevolutionary gangster logic. He pointed out that it is “the logic of the U.S. mandarins” to describe aggression as “friendship.” Yet a handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who supported them from behind, yielded to imperialist pressure and were mortally afraid of imperialism. They vainly hoped to arrange a compromise with imperialism, and get “understanding” and “help” from it. They were deeply dissatisfied with Chairman Mao’s great call “cast away illusions, prepare for struggle.” That they energetically boosted this reactionary, out-and-out traitorous film Inside Story of the Ching Court was in fact in open opposition to Chairman Mao’s criticism and repudiation of Acheson’s White Paper. This was an unbridled attack on Mao Tse-tung’s thought.

Obviously, the reason why this reactionary film company and reactionary scribbler made such a film on the eve of China’s liberation, a film that advocates imperialist “help” in “regenerating the imperial regime,” was that they wanted to use their film to arouse public opinion for their own reactionary purposes and openly advocate reliance on U.S. imperialism to suppress the revolutionary movement of the Chinese people, a stratagem they proposed to the Kuomintang reactionaries who were on their last legs. The film entirely takes the stand of imperialism and the Kuomintang reactionaries. It represents an attempt to help prop up the toppling reactionary regime to meet the needs of U.S. imperialist aggression against China and to serve U.S. imperialism and its lackeys. The handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists who paid lip-service to “opposing imperialism,” and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who supported them from behind, eulogized such a reactionary, out-and-out traitorous film and called it “patriotic.” Doesn’t this expose their true features as sham anti-imperialists and genuine capitulationists? What country do they love? What they love is a country belonging to the imperialists, a country belonging to the landlords and the bourgeoisie, but not our great motherland under the dictatorship of the proletariat. The “patriotism” they eulogize is nothing but a theory of national betrayal which all the revolutionary people of our country want to trample underfoot.

One thing in particular needs to be pointed out. It is by no means accidental that the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road should have praised a reactionary, out-and-out traitorous film as “patriotic.” As early as the first days of the victory of the War of Resistance Against Japan, he was frightened when faced with aggression by U.S. imperialism and its lackeys. Despairing of the future of the Chinese revolution, he actively promoted within the Party a line of national capitulation and class capitulation in what he described as a “new stage of peace and democracy.” Chairman Mao called on us to cast away illusions, to give the enemy tit for tat and fight for every inch of land, whereas this person energetically spread illusions about peace with U.S. imperialism and its lackeys and impudently wrote articles in newspapers in which he expressed gratitude for U.S. imperialist “help” to China and begged for “peace” from U.S. imperialism in an attempt to benumb the fighting will of the people. He even deceived the people by saying that “the main form of struggle in the Chinese revolution has become peaceful and parliamentary. It is legal mass struggle and parliamentary struggle,” “there should be a change in the whole of the Party’s work,” and “all political issues should be settled peacefully.” Chairman Mao said that as our enemies were sharpening their swords, we must sharpen ours too. Yet this person wanted the people to hand over the weapons in their hands. Energetically advertising the theory of national betrayal, he took the enemy as his father and wanted to be a willing servant of U.S. imperialism. He said: “Since the U.S. is bound to find compradors in China, we, too, may act as its compradors, red compradors!” Compradors are compradors. They are running dogs of the imperialists. What’s this about “red compradors”? It is a pure lie. With such a mean and shameless slave mentality, long ago eager to be imperialist compradors, they found the reactionary, out-and-out traitorous film Inside Story of the Ching Court extremely well suited to their taste. This was because the theory advocated by Chen Fei, the imperialist agent in the film, that imperialism might help China “regenerate the imperial regime” exactly reflected their traitorous mentality of eagerly wanting to become compradors of imperialism!

“Hearts which have a common beat are linked.” This is a line of verse the Emperor Kuang Hsu reads out in the film while looking dejectedly at a lake. This is an apt description of the fact that the handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road shared the feelings of Kuang Hsu, his concubine, and their ilk. On the question of serving as imperialist agents, the handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who supported them from behind echoed the views of the landlords and the bourgeoisie of over 60 years ago. This is the ideological and class root of their praise for the “patriotism” of this reactionary, out-and-out traitorous film.

What should be one’s attitude toward the Yiho Tuan revolutionary mass movement?

Chairman Mao says: “In the final analysis, the innumerable truths of Marxism may be expressed in one sentence: ‘rebellion is justified.’” 5 What should be one’s attitude toward the revolutionary movement of all-out rebellion against imperialism and feudalism launched by the revolutionary masses of the Yi Ho Tuan? Should one support it or oppose it? Should one praise it or hate it? This is a touchstone distinguishing genuine revolutionaries from fake, revolutionaries from counterrevolutionaries.

The Yi Ho Tuan movement which shook our vast land was a great anti-imperialist, anti-feudal revolutionary mass movement in modern Chinese history. It was a great movement typifying the initiative of the Chinese people in history. At that time, the Yi Ho Tuan carried on revolutionary activities everywhere, in town and countryside, throughout most of the northern part of China. They set up more than 800 meeting places in the city of Peking itself, the political centre where the enemy exercised the tightest rule. Youths who had joined the Yi Ho Tuan drilled regularly every day under the palace walls behind Ching Shan.

At a crucial moment when our country was in process of being partitioned amongst the imperialists, the Yi Ho Tuan heroes stepped forth bravely, raised aloft the great revolutionary banner of patriotic struggle against imperialism, and carried on a heroic struggle against the imperialist robbers and their lackeys. They splashed the street corners with slogans of every description which gave expression to the firm resolve of the Chinese people to fight the imperialists:

Restore to us our land and rights! We’ll fight our way

Through seas of fire and over mountains of knives!

What does it matter if the Emperor has surrendered?

We’ll not rest till the last foreign invader is dead.

They held the imperialists in contempt; they strictly banned imported goods. The street bearing the name “Legation Street” they renamed “Block the Aliens Street” and the Yu Ho Bridge: “Stop the Aliens Bridge.” Demonstrating in the streets, the Yi Ho Tuan heroes often shouted the slogan “Kill the foreign devils!” in unison with the inhabitants, making the imperialists shudder. Some foreigners were so frightened that they put themselves into coffins and hired professional mourners to carry them out of the city.

In June 1900, Yi Ho Tuan revolutionary activities reached a climax. Day and night, in groups of 30, 40, or SO, the Yi Ho Tuan detachments from Peking’s outlying districts marched on the city. Scores arrived each day. The guards at the city gates stood at attention to salute them and shouted to the crowds to make way. Long columns of the revolutionary people in red turbans, red sashes, and shoes trimmed in red, armed with swords and spears, marched with great dignity in grand parades through the streets of Peking city. And the blacksmiths outside Chienmen worked through the night before their blazing furnaces making swords and spears for the Yi Ho Tuan.

Faced with the frenzied repression of the imperialist aggressor forces, the revolutionary masses of the Yi Ho Tuan pitted their primitive swords and spears heroically against the invaders armed with modern rifles and guns. They demonstrated the Chinese people’s militant, revolutionary spirit of fearlessness. In the famous battle at the railway town of Langfang to halt the enemy’s advance on Peking, the Yi Ho Tuan “blockaded in the train and heavily challenged with spears” an allied force of more than 1,500 men led by British Admiral Seymour. The enemy suffered casualties amounting to nearly 50 percent of his strength, and beat a panicky retreat to Tientsin. Later Seymour recalled his fright that had the “Boxers” been armed with western weapons, the allied force he led would have been annihilated. In the battle to defend Tientsin, the Yi Ho Tuan fought the aggressors’ army hand-to-hand. At the railway station, in one engagement alone they killed or wounded more than 500 men of an, opposing Russian aggressor force of 2,000. The imperialists were forced to admit that there had not been anything like the way the Chinese fought the western soldiers in the bitter battle at Tientsin which went on tenaciously for over a month. In the battle at Yangchun, the American imperialist aggressor army was mercilessly trounced by the Yi Ho Tuan fighters. From then on, the imperialist aggressor armies shuddered at the very bugle note of the Yi Ho Tuan. They wailed: “Those long brass trumpets that can make one’s blood curdle horribly. . . .”

Young people formed a most active and lively force during the Yi Ho Tuan movement. They performed immortal deeds in this great revolutionary movement. The Hung Teng Chao (Red Lanterns) that shook China and the world was an organization of young women from many places in northern China. They formed themselves into a well-disciplined force, did military exercises, and defended their homeland. They were dressed in red, wore red caps, carried red lanterns and red spears. They fought at the front and ferreted out spies in the rear. Playing an active part in the Yi Ho Tuan ranks and resolutely opposing imperialism and its lackeys, they displayed the heroic, anti-imperialist, anti-feudal revolutionary spirit of China’s young women.

“The Hung Teng Chao (Red Lanterns), and the Yi Ho Tuan are like real brothers and sisters. They are united as one, and as one they fight the foreign officials.” This ditty expressed the resolute determination of the Hung Teng Chao to fight the imperialists.

Tales of the heroic deeds of the Hung Teng Chao have circulated widely among the masses of the people ever since. One saying was: “Those Hung Teng girls stare death fearlessly in the face when they charge the enemy positions. Their only worry is that they may lag behind in the fighting.” Another comment was: “Since the reigns of Taokuang and Hsienfeng all the battles at sea and on the land in coastal China against the alien invaders ended in defeat” but “now these girls are giving the foreigners such a trouncing that their victories have struck terror into the hearts of those foreign countries, and stirred the spirits of the Chinese people.”

The heroic struggle of the Yi Ho Tuan is the glory and pride of the Chinese people and one of the foundation stones of the great victory of the Chinese people fifty years later. It gave the aggressors a taste of the iron fists of the Chinese people and smashed the imperialists’ pipe dream of “partitioning” China. Waldersee, commander of the invading imperialist army, reported to the German kaiser: “Your Majesty may entertain the idea of partitioning China, but let it not be forgotten . . . there is still immense vitality in them. The Chinese have not lost all their bellicosity, which may be seen in the recent ‘Boxer Movement.’ Whether Europe or America or Japan, he said, no country is intellectually or militarily equipped for the job of ruling over this one-quarter of mankind. It is therefore an ill-advised policy to try dismemberment.

Real Marxists have always enthusiastically praised revolutionary mass movements of such a tremendous scale. In his great works, Chairman Mao highly appraises the Yi Ho Tuan movement and extols its heroic deeds again and again. He regards the Yi Ho Tuan movement as an important stage in the development of China’s bourgeois democratic revolution. Chairman Mao has pointed out: The Yi Ho Tuan war was a just war against the oppressors. Like other revolutionary wars of the Chinese people in the last hundred years, it “testifies to the Chinese people’s indomitable spirit infighting imperialism and its lackeys.” 6 It shows that “we Chinese have the spirit to fight the enemy to the last drop of our blood, the determination to recover our lost territory by our own efforts, and the ability to stand on our own feet in the family of nations.” 7 “Thanks to the Chinese people’s unrelenting and heroic struggle during the last hundred years, imperialism has not been able to subjugate China, nor will it ever be able to do so.” 8

But the reactionary and thoroughly traitorous film Inside Story of the Ching Court, praised by a handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road supporting them from behind, expresses a deep-rooted class hatred for the anti-imperialist revolutionary mass movement of the Yi Ho Tuan, and does its best to defame and slander it. The film portrays the revolutionary action of the Yi Ho Tuan against imperialism as a sort of barbarous turmoil. It tries its utmost to smear the Yi Ho Tuan, maliciously attacking it as “mad,” “mobs” who “committed murder and arson,” and as “ignorant people” who engaged in “witchcraft.”

These malicious slanders uttered against the Yi Ho Tuan by the film and those who praised it are completely in tune with the views of the imperialists. At that time Dean Acheson, a chieftain of U.S. imperialism, cursed the Yi Ho Tuan movement in his White Paper as “the anti-foreign disturbances in China” and “the Boxer Rebellion.” The hired intellectuals of U.S. imperialism in China were also unbridled in their attacks against the Yi Ho Tuan movement as an “offspring of ignorant superstition and hysterics of the mob,” as a “perpetrator of senseless acts,” and as “Boxers” who committed murder and arson.

Was it the Yi Ho Tuan organized by the Chinese people that went to the imperialist countries in Europe and America and to Japan to stage rebellion and “commit murder and arson”? Or was it the imperialist countries that came to invade China, this land of ours, to oppress and exploit the Chinese people and so aroused the masses of the Chinese people to resist imperialism and its lackeys and corrupt officials in China? This is a major question of right and wrong which must be debated and cleared up.

The real bandits who massacred people and committed arson were none other than the imperialists and their lackeys. According to the admissions of Alfred von Waldersee, head of the invading imperialist troops, these troops, after occupying Peking, burnt, massacred, plundered, raped, destroyed cultural treasures, and committed all manner of crimes. Following their occupation of Peking, the imperialist troops were granted special permission to loot openly for three days. This was followed by robbery on an individual basis. They plundered everywhere, from the imperial court and mansions of the princes to the homes of ordinary people. “The windows facing the lakeside were widely opened; court officials were alarmed to see a line of camels coming.” The historical relics stored in the Summer Palace, a treasure house of the feudal emperors, were carried away by the aggressors to Tientsin by camels, and this took many a month. Many relics preserved for centuries in China, including the Yung Lo Encyclopedia, were burnt or stolen by the imperialists. Waldersee also confessed that there were many cases of rape, brutality, willful murder, and senseless arson in the course of plunder. As for the massacre and suppression of the Yi Ho Tuan by the imperialists’ lackeys, it was even more brutal and callous.

With deep indignation, Lenin condemned the crimes of massacre and arson committed by the imperialist aggressors. He wrote:

The European governments (the Russian Government among the very first) have already started to partition China. . . . They began to rob China as ghouls rob corpses, and when the seeming corpse attempted to resist, they flung themselves upon it like savage beasts, burning down whole villages, shooting, bayoneting and drowning in the Amur River [Heilungkiang River] unarmed inhabitants, their wives, and their children. And all these Christian exploits are accompanied by howls against the Chinese barbarians who dared to raise their hands against the civilized Europeans. 9

But the film and those who praised it have turned things upside down and assisted the evil doers, portraying the imperialist aggressors who committed murder, arson, robbery, and rape as envoys of civilization while slandering as “barbarous rioters” the heroic and indomitable Yi Ho Tuan who resolutely resisted imperialist aggression. This is the genuine philosophy of quislings and traitors.

The patriotic, anti-imperialist struggle of the Yi Ho Tuan was closely linked with the anti-feudal struggle. The battle cries of the Yi Ho Tuan were: “Kill the foreigners and wipe out corrupt officials.” A ditty of the time runs as follows: “Slay the foreigners and kill the beastly mandarins; great hopes will shine before the common people when the foreigners and mandarins are gone.” “First kill the foreign devils and then beat up the corrupt officials.” Such were their simple and forthright anti-imperialist and anti-feudal revolutionary slogans. They deeply hated the feudal ruling class. In 1900 when the Yi Ho Tuan controlled Peking, most of the offices of the mandarins of the Ching Dynasty in the capital and the mansions of princes, dukes, and aristocrats were watched over by members of the Yi Ho Tuan. The Yi Ho Tuan on many occasions caught officials who were notorious for their crimes, especially those subservient to imperialism, and forced them to kowtow and repent at the altar set up by the Yi Ho Tuan. Those who had committed the most heinous crimes were put to death.

Yet the film slanders the Yi Ho Tuan as a tool of the feudal rulers. The film portrayed Chao Shu-chiao, a high-ranking mandarin of the Ching Dynasty, as one who had said: “The Empress Tzu Hsi [the Empress Dowager] is begged to issue an order to organize the Yi Ho Tuan into an imperial army.” The empress gladly accepted this suggestion. In this way the Yi Ho Tuan was made out to be partisans of the Empress Tzu Hsi. This is an utterly vicious slander.

For a short period, the rulers of the Ching Dynasty adopted the policy of deceiving and softening up the Yi Ho Tuan. For a time, this policy had some effect and some members of the Yi Ho Tuan were misled into an erroneous understanding of the rulers of the Ching Dynasty. Some detachments of the Yi Ho Tuan put forward the slogan “Support the Ching Dynasty and wipe out the foreigners.” This reflects, on the one hand, the complicated nature of the class contradictions at that time and, on the other hand, the fact that people’s understanding of imperialism and its lackeys at that time remained at the stage of perceptual knowledge.

Chairman Mao has taught us that man’s knowledge develops from the lower to the higher stage and from perceptual knowledge to rational knowledge. “Similarly with the Chinese people’s knowledge of imperialism. The first stage was one of superficial, perceptual knowledge, as shown in the indiscriminate anti-foreign struggles of the movement of the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, the Yi Ho Tuan movement, and so on. It was only in the second stage that the Chinese people reached the stage of rational knowledge, saw the internal and external contradictions of imperialism, and saw the essential truth that imperialism had allied itself with China’s comprador and feudal classes to oppress and exploit the great masses of the Chinese people. This knowledge began about the time of the May 4th Movement of 1919.” 10 Therefore it is absolutely impermissible to slander the Yi Ho Tuan movement as a tool of the feudal rulers only because it failed to see clearly the nature of imperialism and feudalism. As stated above, along with their anti-imperialist activities, the Yi Ho Tuan never for a moment ceased their activities against the Ching Dynasty. Even after the appearance of the slogan “Support the Ching Dynasty and wipe out the foreigners,” Chu Hung-teng [Red Lantern Chu], leader of the Yi Ho Tuan, worked out a plan for an attack on Peking and persevered in the anti-feudal struggle.

It was solely to meet the needs of imperialism and the feudal landlord class that the reactionary film the Inside Story of the Ching Court so unscrupulously slandered and attacked the anti-imperialist, anti-feudal struggle of the Yi Ho Tuan movement. Their slanders and attacks against the revolutionary masses of the Yi Ho Tuan movement reflect the bitter hatred of the class enemy for the peasants—the main force of the Chinese revolution—and the bitter hatred of the class enemy for the new democratic revolutionary movement led by our Party. The handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who was supporting them from behind were singing the same tune as imperialism and feudalism when they applauded this reactionary, thoroughly traitorous film which opposes the Chinese revolution and insults the revolutionary masses. When they did this they were simply serving as mouthpieces for the counterrevolutionary propaganda of imperialism and feudalism. This has completely exposed their counterrevolutionary class stand which is that of the landlords and bourgeoisie.

The fact that the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road so bitterly hates the revolutionary mass movements in history helps us to understand better why, in the current Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, he put forward, in collaboration with another top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, a bourgeois reactionary line in a vain attempt to extinguish the revolutionary flames set alight by Chairman Mao himself, why he confused right and wrong and turned things upside down, organized converging attacks against revolutionaries, suppressed the masses and carried out a white terror, and why he tried in a hundred and one ways to boost the arrogance of the bourgeoisie and crush the spirit of the proletariat.

What should be one’s attitude toward bourgeois reformism?

One’s attitude toward bourgeois reformism is, in reality, a question of one’s attitude toward the socialist road and the capitalist road.

With regard to this fundamental question which concerns the future of the Chinese revolution, differences of principle have long existed between the proletarian revolutionaries headed by Chairman Mao and the Party people in authority taking the capitalist road. These differences of principle became even more acute after China was liberated. The question of what attitude should one take toward the reactionary film the Inside Story of the Ching Court was a point at which these differences came to a head. This was the first fight at close quarters in the struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie and between the socialist road and the capitalist road on the cultural and ideological fronts. In this fight, in their evaluations of the film, the proletarian revolutionaries headed by Chairman Mao, on the one hand, and the handful of Party people in authority taking the capitalist road, on the other, gave completely different answers to the question of which direction should China take.

A handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, who was supporting them from behind, did their best to boost this reactionary film which opposes revolution and sings the praises of reformism. They aimed to get help from the dead souls of bourgeois reformism and using the latter’s names, robes, and slogans to spread capitalism in China.

The Reform Movement of 1898 which the film glorifies was a reformist movement of the Chinese bourgeoisie. This movement was launched by certain members of the feudal ruling class and a number of bourgeois reformers who were starting to break away from the feudal ruling class. They launched this movement under the threat of a revolutionary storm and the disaster of national subjugation and in the interests of the landlords and the bourgeoisie. This was an attempt to lead China onto the road of capitalism through reformist modernization and constitutional reform from above.

Under the historical conditions of the time, the 1898 Reform Movement was, to some extent, a blow against the ideological domination of the feudal ruling class and it played a certain enlightening role in the process of ideological emancipation. We have always taken note of this point. However, such recognition means making a critical assessment of historical personages and incidents from the viewpoint of historical materialism. It does not in any way mean an unprincipled glorifying of the 1898 Reform Movement and its representative participants. The representative persons of the 1898 Reform Movement were themselves rulers who exploited and oppressed the working people. Their reformist goal did not and could never serve the interests of the people’s revolution; they aimed at consolidating their rule and exploiting the people even more effectively.

What they wanted to change was not the essence but only some minor aspects of the old order. The illusion they cherished was simply the gradual transformation by devious means of the landlord economy into a semi-landlord and semi-capitalist economy (actually a semi-feudal and semi-colonial economy). This was an attempt to head off the people’s revolutionary movement and suppress the revolution in unapparent ways. Even at that time, therefore, reformism could never be the way out for the Chinese people.

At the end of the nineteenth century, there already existed two roads of social reform in China: one was the bourgeois reformist road which meant the attempt to get to capitalism by means of constitutional reform and modernization from above. In the historical conditions of China at that time, this could not be other than a false, impassable, and reactionary road because China lacked the historical conditions for reformist modernization such as existed in western Europe and Japan. China was then being gradually reduced to a semi-feudal and semi-colonial state under imperialist aggression. Yet Kang Yu-wei and Liang Chi-chao, leaders of the Chinese bourgeois reformists, placed their hopes for constitutional reform and modernization precisely on imperialism. They cherished the illusion that they could go over completely to the side of imperialism and rely on its strength to realize their aims of constitutional reform and modernization. The result of that could only be to bring a wolf into the house and accelerate the process of reducing China to a semi-colonial, semi-feudal state, in which the development of capitalism in China would be absolutely out of the question. The other road of social reform was for the broad masses to rise up and make revolution by armed struggle. Both the Taiping Revolution and the Yi Ho Tuan movement took this road. These revolutions did not achieve final victory because they lacked proletarian leadership. However, they dealt heavy blows at imperialism and feudalism and promoted China’s historical advance.

“I raise my sword to laugh at the sky.” A most tragic and moving episode of the 1898 Reform Movement was the death of Tan Szu-tung, a courageous and enlightening thinker. His death announced the premature end of this movement and the bankruptcy of the bourgeois reformist road. Half a century later, however, the reactionary film Inside Story of the Ching Court again advocated bourgeois reformism, which had long ago gone bankrupt. This film does its utmost to spread the nonsensical idea that “if China is to become rich and strong, there must be constitutional reform and modernization!” Through the mouth of the Emperor Kuang Hsu, the film gives high praise to constitutional reform and modernization, extravagantly lauding reformism in such words as “Meiji reforms,” “the imperial decree on constitutional reform,” and “if China continues to reform in this way, in less than 30 years it will become the richest and most powerful state in the world!” This is a crazy call for a bourgeois republic, for western bourgeois civilization and for the bourgeois reformist road, which will never be tolerated by the revolutionary people!

The film lauds to the skies the representative persons of bourgeois reformism, the Emperor Kuang Hsu in particular. It says that the emperor “wearied his brain and suffered much vexation. . . in the interests of the state and the people,” and pictures him as saying “as long as Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-tung Eng. ed., Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1966, p. 118.the affairs of state are going well. . . personal health is of little account.”

Especially vicious is the way that the film, while singing the praises of emperors, kings, ministers, and generals and prettifying bourgeois reformism, tries by every means to smear the working people and vilify the masses as a “mob.” Toward the end of the film, the scenarist, through distorted and slanderous images of peasants and village women, extravagantly glorifies the Emperor Kuang Hsu, praising him as a “good emperor,” “helping us, the people,” and saying that “we all think of His Majesty!” The villagers “offer” eggs and other refreshments to the Emperor Kuang Hsu. On his departure, the film shows “the people kneeling along the roadside to see him off.” The film gives currency to the slander that “the masses are most obedient and most easily satisfied.” Are the masses of people really such easygoing, obedient, base, and ugly mobs? It is absolutely impermissible to smear the working people! Chairman Mao teaches us: “The people, and the people alone, are the motive force in the making of world history.” 11 That the handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, who supports them from behind, have done so much to sing the praises of this reactionary film which glorifies emperors and kings, ministers and generals, smears the working people, and preaches bourgeois reformism only serves to expose their true colours of all-out opposition to Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tse-tung’s thought.

The Chinese people won revolutionary victory through protracted armed struggle under the leadership of Chairman Mao, and on the eve of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, Chairman Mao himself summed up the revolutionary struggles of the past 100 years, criticizing and repudiating the bourgeois reformist road and proclaiming that “western bourgeois civilization, bourgeois democracy, and the plan for a bourgeois republic have all gone bankrupt in the eyes of the Chinese people.” What angers people especially is the fact that after all this the handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road should have described this reactionary, out-and-out traitorous film, which sings the praises of bourgeois reformism and advocates the capitalist road, as a “patriotic” film and put it on show in a big way in every part of China without criticism and repudiation. If this can be tolerated, what cannot be tolerated?

In his article, “On the People’s Democratic Dictatorship,” Chairman Mao states: “From the time of China’s defeat in the Opium War of 1840, Chinese progressives went through untold hardships in their quest for truth from the Western countries.” Chinese who then sought progress maintained that “only modernization could save China, only learning from foreign countries could modernize China.” “The Japanese had been successful in learning from the West, and the Chinese also wished to learn from the Japanese.” But, “imperialist aggression shattered the fond dreams of the Chinese about learning from the West. It was very odd—why were the teachers always committing aggression against their pupil? The Chinese learned a good deal from the West, but they could not make it work and were never able to realize their ideals.” “The salvoes of the October Revolution brought us Marxism-Leninism.” “Under the leadership of the Communist Party of China, the Chinese people, after driving out Japanese imperialism, waged the People’s War of Liberation for three years and have basically won victory.” “Bourgeois democracy has given way to people’s democracy under the leadership of the working class and the bourgeois republic to the people’s republic. This has made it possible to achieve socialism and communism through the people’s republic, to abolish classes, and enter a world of Great Harmony. Kang Yu-wei wrote Ta Tung Shu, or the Book of Great Harmony, but he did not and could not find the way to achieve Great Harmony. There are bourgeois republics in foreign lands, but China cannot have a bourgeois republic because she is a country suffering under imperialist oppression. The only way is through a people’s republic led by the working class.” 12

A handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road disregarded the historical facts as well as the warnings given by Chairman Mao. They continued to use the reactionary and out-and-out traitorous film, Inside Story of the Ching Court, to prettify western bourgeois civilization, prettify bourgeois democracy, prettify the bourgeois republic, and advocate bourgeois reformism and the capitalist road. This amounts to flagrantly opposing Mao Tse-tung’s thought and vainly attempting a restoration of capitalism in China. They put all their efforts into extolling the reactionary film, Inside Story of the Ching Court, precisely because this film, which opposes revolution and eulogizes reform, serves to beat the gongs and clear the way for them to stage a capitalist restoration. What they did was in effect to use people of former times to sing the praises of capitalism and the road of bourgeois reformism, to use this film to mislead the masses and prettify bourgeois reformism, their ultimate purpose being to overthrow the people’s regime, undermine our dictatorship of the proletariat, and place the fruits of the victory of the revolution in the hands of the bourgeoisie.

The serious struggle that developed around the reactionary film, Inside Story of the Ching Court, is by no means merely a question of one film, but a struggle between the two classes, the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, a struggle between Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tse-tung’s thought on the one hand, and bourgeois reformist and revisionist ideas on the other, a struggle between an attempt at capitalist restoration and the efforts of the proletariat opposed to capitalist restoration. In the final analysis, it is a struggle to determine who will win, capitalism or socialism.

Under the leadership of their great leader Chairman Mao, the Chinese people fought hard, bloody battles, advanced wave upon wave, and finally carried the struggle against imperialism and feudalism to victory. With the whole country liberated, where should liberated China go? To whom should the fruits of victory belong? Which class was entitled to pick the peaches that had grown, watered by the blood and lives of thousands upon thousands of revolutionary martyrs? Such major questions were the focus of the struggle waged between various classes in Chinese society not only at that time; they remain so even today.

The bourgeoisie wanted to snatch the fruits of victory from out of the hands of the people. They wanted to pick the peaches. They wanted China, just liberated, to take the capitalist road. The top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road was the one to pick the peaches on behalf of the bourgeoisie.

Since liberation, the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road has gone on dreaming night and day of capitalist restoration, obstinately clinging to his bourgeois world outlook, zealously yearning for bourgeois reformism, and trying his utmost to stop the Chinese revolution halfway, thus giving a big boost to capitalism.

Chairman Mao has said that the founding of the People’s Republic of China on October 1, 1949, marked the basic completion of the stage of new democratic revolution and the beginning of the stage of socialist revolution. The top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, however, harped on a contrary tune, painstakingly preached “consolidation of the new democratic order,” and campaigned for the development of capitalism in China.

Before and after the showing throughout the country of the reactionary film, Inside Story of the Ching Court, he campaigned everywhere, making many sinister speeches, issuing many sinister directives, energetically praising the so-called “progress” and “glory” of the capitalist system, and spreading the absurd idea that “exploitation is no crime,” “to rebel is not justified.” Marx said: “Capital comes [into the world] dripping from head to foot, from every pore, with blood and dirt.” 13 But, the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road had this to say: “In China, there is not too much capitalism, but too little”; “It is necessary to develop capitalist exploitation for such exploitation is progressive”; “Instead of being an evil, capitalist exploitation today is a contribution.” He loudly stated that “the working people do not oppose exploitation, but welcome it”; and that “the more the capitalists, the more the exploitation, the more satisfaction we will have.” He even shamelessly told a number of capitalists that “the agony of the workers is unemployment. What they fear is that no one will exploit them. Therefore, they feel it better to be exploited than not.” “The workers want you to exploit them. If you do not exploit them, they will be miserable.” “The capitalists are also serving the people.” “If you are able to exploit more, you will be benefiting both the state and the people.” “The more you exploit, the greater will be your merit and glory.” “Exploitation by the capitalists has its merits in history and such merits are immortal.” He energetically spread the idea that “exploitation is legal,” saying: “It is legal to make [a] profit, however great it may be. “It is also legal to indulge in beautiful clothes, rouge and powder and wining and dining.” Talking like a clown, he addressed capitalists: “Messrs. capitalists! I beg you to exploit me! If you exploit me, I shall be able to feed myself and my wife and children will be able to live. If you do not exploit me, that will be terrible.”

When the workers did not accept his stinking reactionary theories, he slandered them as “lacking political understanding and having a low level of political consciousness.” Speaking like an accomplice of the capitalists, he maliciously threatened the workers: “If the workers are unruly, it is legal (for the capitalists) to struggle against (them).”

At the same time, he also vigorously advocated the development of capitalist economy in the rural areas, clamouring for “long-term protection of the rich-peasant economy,” advancing the “four freedoms” (freedom of usury, of hiring labour, land sale, and private enterprise). He advocated vigorous efforts to foster the type of peasant “who owns three horses, a plough, and a cart” so as to develop the rich-peasant economy. He talked such nonsense as: “At present, exploitation saves people and it is dogmatic to forbid exploitation. Now there must be exploitation and it should be welcomed. If the refugees from south of the Great Wall who go to northeast China are exploited by the rich peasants there, these refugees will be very grateful for such exploitation.” “Hiring hands is not exploitation; it increases the wealth of society.” He also proposed that there should be “no limitation” on hiring hands to till the land. “It is legal to hire hands to till the land; this benefits the masses too.” He claimed that “those who exploit can also be socialists” and that “there is nothing to be afraid of, should there be 10,000 rich-peasant Party members in northeast China.” He tried to get the capitalist economy to swiftly flood the rural areas.

In singing the praises of the man-eating capitalist system of exploitation, not even the hired scholars of the bourgeoisie and the motley crew of apologists for old and modern revisionism could catch up with this top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road.

Each plant yields its own particular fruit; each class speaks in its own terms. The top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road thinks and loves capitalism and talks capitalism too. The cannibal philosophy that he peddles serves entirely to develop capitalism and safeguard the bloody system of exploitation of man by man. His voice is the voice of vampires and parasites. This thoroughly exposes his filthy, ugly bourgeois soul.

In trying to justify himself, the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road said that his case was one of “a veteran revolutionary meeting new problems.”

What a “veteran revolutionary meeting new problems”!

Could there be a “veteran revolutionary” so frantically carrying out activities to restore capitalism?

Could there be a “veteran revolutionary” who would so wildly oppose our great leader Chairman Mao and the great thought of Mao Tse-tung?

If he really is a “veteran revolutionary,” then let him explain:

Why is it that, on the eve of the outbreak of the War of Resistance Against Japan, you preached so vigorously the philosophy of survival, a capitulationist philosophy, a traitor’s philosophy, and directed some people to make confessions and surrender to the Kuomintang and betray the Communist Party, openly publish “anti-communist statements” and vow “firmly to oppose communism”?

Why is it that, after the victory of the War of Resistance, you advanced the capitulationist line of “a new stage of peace and democracy”?

Why is it that, after liberation, you did your utmost to oppose the socialist transformation of capitalist industry and commerce, oppose agricultural cooperation, and slash the number of agricultural cooperatives?

Why is it that, after the completion of the transformation of capitalist industry and commerce, agriculture and handicrafts, you painstakingly propagated the dying out of class struggle and actively advocated class collaboration and the liquidation of class struggle?

Why is it that, during the three difficult years, you echoed the ghosts and monsters at home and abroad in viciously attacking the three red banners [the Party’s general line for building socialism, the great leap forward, and the people’s communes], while advocating the revisionist line of “the extension of plots for private use and of free markets, the increase of small enterprises with sole responsibility for their own profits or losses, the fixing of output quotas based on the household,” and “the liquidation of struggle in our relations with imperialism, the reactionaries, and modern revisionism, and reduction of assistance and support to the revolutionary struggle of other peoples”?

Why is it that you republished in 1962 that poisonous weed, that deceitful book on self-cultivation of Communists which does not advocate revolution, class struggle, the seizure of political power, and the dictatorship of the proletariat, which opposes Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tse-tung’s thought, preaches a decadent bourgeois world outlook and the reactionary philosophy of bourgeois idealism?

Why is it that in the socialist education movement you put forward and pushed through the opportunist line which was “Left” in form but Right in essence to sabotage the socialist education movement?

Why is it that in the course of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution you have colluded with another top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road in putting forward and carrying out the bourgeois reactionary line?

There is only one answer: You are not at all a “veteran revolutionary”! You are a sham revolutionary, a counterrevolutionary. You are a Khrushchev lying right beside us!

During the past seventeen years, a handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists, with the support of the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, has launched a frenzied, all-round attack on the proletariat, spreading a great deal of poison in the fields of politics, economy, culture, and education.

In this Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, we must follow Chairman Mao’s teachings, organize a mighty cultural army of the proletarian revolution, thoroughly smash the frenzied attacks by this handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, dig out the main root of revisionism in our country, overthrow careerists and conspirators like Khrushchev, prevent such bad elements from usurping the leadership of the Party and the state, and guard against the restoration of capitalism, so as to guarantee that our country will never change its colour!

“With power and to spare we must pursue the tottering foe.” This Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution initiated and led by our great leader Chairman Mao himself is aimed precisely at mobilizing the hundreds of millions of people to pursue relentlessly the handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists and the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who supports them from behind, to recapture all the citadels they usurped and ensure that Mao Tse-tung’s thought occupy all positions. It is precisely as Comrade Lin Piao said in speaking about this Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution: “It is a big campaign; it is a general attack on the ideas of the bourgeoisie and all other exploiting classes.” We must respond to the great call of Chairman Mao to hold high the revolutionary banner of criticism and repudiation, plunge bravely into the struggle, thoroughly criticize, repudiate, and eliminate in all fields the noxious influences of the bourgeois reactionary line represented by the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, we must vigorously destroy the old ideas of the exploiting classes and establish the complete ascendancy of Mao Tse-tung’s thought.

The road of struggle is tortuous and its development is uneven. There is resistance along the road of advance. We must overcome all difficulties, break down all resistance and carry the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution through to the end; we must not give up halfway.

Unfurl the red banner of the great and invincible thought of Mao Tse-tung all over China; may it shine for ever in splendour!

Long live the victory of the movement of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution led personally by our respected and beloved leader Chairman Mao!

Notes:

  1. The Life of Wu Hsun was a most pernicious counterrevolutionary film which fervently praised the landlord class and its lackeys, frenziedly advocated the most shameless slavishness and capitulationism, and maliciously slandered the peasants’ revolutionary struggles. Wu Hsun (1838-1896) was a landlord’s toady whom the film turned into a “great man” willing to sacrifice himself to provide poor peasant children with a chance to study.—Tr.
  2. Studies on “The Dream of the Red Chamber” is a book which evaluated this classical novel from the bourgeois idealist point of view and used bourgeois methods of textual research.— Tr.
  3. Chen Fei (1876-1900), concubine of Emperor Kuang Hsu.
  4. “The Role of the Chinese Communist Party in the National War,” Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung, Eng. ed., Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1965, Vol. II, p. 196.
  5. Mao Tse-tung, Speech at the Meeting of People From Various Walks of Life in Yenan Celebrating Stalin’s 60th Birthday Anniversary.
  6. “The Chinese Revolution and the Chinese Communist Party,” Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung, Eng. ed., Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1965, Vol. II, p. 314.
  7. “On Tactics Against Japanese Imperialism,” Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung, Eng. ed., Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1965, Vol. I, p. 170.
  8. “The Chinese Revolution and the Chinese Communist Party,” Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung, Eng. ed., Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1965, Vol. II, p. 314.
  9. V. I. Lenin, Collected Works, Moscow: Foreign Languages Publishing House, 1960, Vol. IV, p. 374.
  10. “On Practice,” Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung. Eng. ed., Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1965, Vol. I, p. 301.
  11. “On the People’s Democratic Dictatorship,”, Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung, Eng. ed., Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1961, Vol. IV, pp. 412-44.
  12. K. Marx, Capital, Eng. ed., Moscow: Foreign Languages Publishing House, 1954, Vol. I, p. 760.

Let ‘Em Send Me to the Bughouse Again!

By | 02/01/2021

I wanna live back in the USSR,
I vote for the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.
And let the buggers send me to the bughouse again –
There they give you downers—and free of charge, that’s the best of all!

— Russian shitkicker radical commie underground poetry.

It’s a quiet night here, by Shchukinskaya metro station. If you look out the window, you can see the twin towers of the swanky Aliye Parusa apartment complex, painted a really eerie shade of turquoise, looming in the distance. In fact, they look so uncannily like a downsized copy of the Twin Towers of 9/11 fame that one wonders why the Chechen guerrillas don’t hijack some kukuruznik (a pathetic-looking little plane used for spraying fertilizer and pesticides on fields) somewhere in the wilds of Ichkeria and reenact here in Moscow the valorous deed of their co-religionists in NYC. Would look very hip and postmodern—plus, with any luck, the wreck and ruin caused by such an explosion would stop just short of the borders of the neighborhood I live in, taking away the worthless lives of the rich scum who can afford an apartment in Aliye Parusa and leaving righteous cheapo revolutionaries like myself—and the proletarians and oppressed masses living in my filthy ghettolike neighborhood—unscathed and rejoicing.

I’m quite comfy here, by the computer. A cup of hot coffee is steaming before me, I have just popped three tranquilizers to allay the nasty combined effects of my ongoing depression and the hell of a hangover I’m having and Gerry Mulligan’s sax is harmoniously blending with Art Farmer’s trumpet on My Funny Valentine in my headphones. I’m getting older and tamer, hence the preference for jazz. No more avantgarde Belarus punk bands with lyrics like “I’m walking sober, like a Hitler monument” or Kazakhstani Moslem ones with entire songs composed of the phrase “I love pork! I dig pork!! Eating pork gives me a motherfucking kick!!!” for me. Or pseudo-proletarian anthems like the one quoted above. Jazz, sobriety, conjugal fidelity and my old ragged and worn snot-green sweater to keep out the cold.

The guy spotted by the militia on Ustyinsky Bridge in Moscow on Tuesday night, February 4, must have felt very differently from me, in my present idyllic circumstances. Shivering from the bitter cold in his threadbare coat. Fidgety, nervous and on the verge of hysteria. And, as likely as not, intoxicated with counterfeit vodka or some nauseating chemically-synthesized alcoholic drink from a plastic bottle. Concealed under the threadbare coat of the 22-year-old chemistry student Igor Fedorovich (nicknamed “the Sapper”)—who made the headlines in the Russian media that week and riveted the nation’s attention to the political group he belonged to, the Vanguard of Red Youth (AKM)—was no less an object than a homemade time bomb. His alleged target was the Moscow City Public Transportation Administration (Mosgortrans) building on Raushskaya Quay, which he allegedly intended to bomb in a protest against the recent raise in gas prices and the corresponding raise in public transportation fares. The FSB and militia are reported to have been aware all along of the bombing plot brewing in AKM milieus, allegedly keeping surveillance of the group’s activities for several weeks, so a cop ambush was waiting for the Sapper by the bridge. He installed his bomb and set the timer ticking. When the cops emerged from hiding and demanded that he defuse the device, he said it was impossible to stop the timer once it had been launched and then asked to send for his mother. She was duly brought to the scene and, after a short talk with her, Igor gingerly carried the ticking bomb to the quay’s parapet, where it exploded, causing no other harm than a few damaged stones. Igor Fedorovich, under psychiatric care and recently discharged after a course of treatment in a mental hospital, is also supposed to be implicated in some other bombing activities, particularly the September 11, 2002, explosion of the plastic toilet down which Putin’s Hitlerjugend, the Idushchiye Vmeste (one possible translation could be “Coming Together”), used to symbolically flush the books of avant-garde writers.

That’s the official story, culled from various news agencies. How much of it is true, I don’t know and I don’t care to know. Throwing bombs or hurling jet planes at symbols of authority sucks as a method of overthrowing the Shitstem, only making it nastier and more virulent—but, then again, there is the righteous wrath of the oppressed and the downtrodden and the plain damn losers and no Marxist wiseacres like me or my friends can do shit to hold it back. Working out your existential neuroses (I’ve heard of a lady terrorist who was initially drawn into the Struggle by—I’m not kidding—her ignorance of the joys of masturbation) by posing as the new Charlie-Manson-cum-Red-Brigades is pathetic—but it’s surely better and worthier of a human being than the mindless routine of a pseudo-Westernized cog in the wheel of the Society of the Spectacle, who earns just as little below the salary of a garbageman in LA as to be able to look down upon 99.999 per cent of his compatriots and whose only joys in life are waking up Saturday mornings with a condom on his cock and a strange body in his bed plus his masochistic hatred of the Chechen Terrorists. And, for all I know, there might have been no bomb, no terrorist plot, no nothing. Our charming powers that be are more than capable of framing whomever they like for whatever they’ve got a mind to. You, gentle reader, may one day find yourself accused of being an operative of the CIA or, say, the security services of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. The girl that you pick up at the Hungry Duck or wherever you filthy foreigners flush with ill-gotten bucks seduce our  naïve and trusting girls, leaving no chance to us cheapo Russians, and that you wake up together with the next morning with a condom on your cock, may, if she is a physics or engineering major, be accused of industrial espionage for Western intelligence agencies. And if she reads Chomsky or Marx, she may be framed for a bombing case like the one described above. It’s all a fucking lottery. But more of that later.

Another thing I’d like my readers to understand. For all the irony and grisly sexual detail, this article is about friends. They are comrades—erring comrades, alcohol-soaked comrades, no-brain comrades—but comrades anyway, fellow dissidents in the same boat with us, walking, like us, under the imminent danger of being impaled on the “vertical power structure” or trodden under the heel of the “dictatorship of the law.”

And now for the irony and the grisly sexual detail.

Communism Is Not Communism

Five years ago, a stocky youth with a wild look on his face and unwashed long blond hair lumbered into my obshchaga (hostel) room in my hometown of Obninsk, Kaluga Region. Hung over as hell, I was printing out a draft of my dissertation on my antediluvian dot-matrix printer that was going “Tsk-tsk-tsk-HRRR!” in an especially irritating brand of industrial psychedelic ambient trance music and, to cap it all, my cat Anaxagoras had just shitted on a freshly printed-out and especially important part of the dissertation. The guy turned out to be a young physics graduate called Denis (a.k.a. Den, Dennis and the Deng Who Is Not Xiaoping) who’d found out I was into Leftist politics and sort of wanted to join forces with me. Understandably, I was somewhat gruff in my replies at first, but soon we found out we agreed on every political issue under the sun. When Den touched upon an especially abstruse issue (I forget whether it was the dialectic of productive forces and production relations or the Althusserian theory of overdetermination) that I didn’t have a ready answer to, I said, using a familiar Russian metaphor: “You know, Den, this is a tough one. It can’t be solved without a half a liter [of vodka].” “Half a liter? Just half a liter? Oh, I’ll be back in a sec,” said the literal-minded Den, vanished and returned five minutes later with a bottle of Smirnov. This smoothed our political discussion a lot, so Den fetched another and then another.

Much later in the evening, at party with some friends, Dennis stopped dead in the middle of an argument, exclaimed: “Communism is not Communism!”, puked into my plate and passed out.

We’ve been good friends and inseparable political partners ever since.

For the last two years and a half we’ve been running an outfit called the Russian Maoist Party (RMP). Being composed of orientalists, physicists, mathematicians, economists and other true sons of the sod and representatives of the oppressed toiling masses, our chief function is to act as jackals of our Russian commie movement, preying on the anti-Semites, Brezhnevites, lovers and connoisseurs of the Jewish-Masonic conspiracy and plain damn nuts that infest that movement and, to tell the truth, compose the quasi-totality of it. Everybody hates our guts, but everybody reads us, including such backwoods and asshole-of-the-fucking-universe places as Yakutia, the Far East, Serbia and New York City.

We are a quiet, bookish, Web-oriented sect of Maoist dogmaticists. I, for one, almost never leave my Shchukino pad at all, making junior Party members run errands for me: fetch cigarettes, coffee, vodka, take my son from school and so on. So it is a wee bit hard to understand why the FSB wanted to frame us for two terrorist attacks in the course of half ayear, including the famous 2000 underground passage bombing in Pushkin Square—on the latter occasion arresting Den and me and taking us to headquarters handcuffed together, as if we were Mafia killers or something. Thanks to some of our foreign connections, we have also been written up by News of the World and (if I remember correctly) The Guardian, using the epithets “fanatic,” “madcap” and “known terrorists.” So here is a recipe for you if you want to acquire the kind of sexy reputation we have: sit on your butt, publish a sedate and academic Marxist-Leninist paper and post in Internet forums using such sexy and racy words as “the right of nations to self-determination” or “the dictatorship of the proletariat.” The rest is assured. Tells a lot, if you ask me, about the politico-cultural climate in today’s world in general and in our long-suffering Russia under the heel of the fascist motherfucker Putin dictatorship in particular. Has some bearing, too, on the immediate subject of my ramblings here, which is

The Vanguard of Red Youth (AKM)

Needless to say, the AKM is neither a vanguard (to be a vanguard you have at least to be headed somewhere, a virtue these guys most conspicuously lack) nor red (pink, light brown, mauve or burgundy might be more descriptive of the group’s political coloration), though it does indeed contain some youth. “Wackos,” “nutters,” “counterfeit-vodka-soaked degenerates, “hypersexual no-mind FSB dupes” and other endearing terms often used of them in the Left tusovka may be more accurate, but they are not terribly effective as an explanation—not much more helpful than the “Stalinist fanatics” and “implacable supercommunist intransigents” of the mainstream media. So let me try to explain.

Neither the AKM nor its parent organization, the Trudovaya Rossiya (“Labor Russia”), popularly known as the “Anpilov babushkas,” are really about Communism. Nor are they about fascism, anarchism, antiglobalism or Soviet patriotism, though each of these ideologies does play a part. What these two groups are really all about is a totally nonthinking and visceral reaction of bewildered people to a hostile environment. In the microbiological world, if you drip some acid into a test tube filled with a solution with amoebas and infusoria in it, the critters will naturally drift to the section least affected by the acid. In the animal kingdom, you have the familiar Russian aphorism: “Flip the horse on the nose, it will wag its tail.” In the Russian political world, you have the Trudovaya Rossiya and the AKM.

The hostile environment is, of course, what a pedestrian Marxist-Leninist like me would define as Russian capitalism, period. A fascist-influenced aesthete like the eXile’s own Dr. Limonov (may he breathe the air of freedom as soon as possible!) might say the colonialistic plutocratic Elders-of-Zion globalist occupation. And some Berezovsky-funded libertarian democratic Russophobe human rights junkie will call it the totalitarian Stalinist dictatorship of the murderous KGB colonel Putin. But they’re all different names for the same thing. And this environment is hostile to anything that lives and thinks. The TR and AKM are certainly alive (and kicking, in a convulsive sort of way)—but their top priority seems to be to avoid thinking and acting intelligently at all costs.

The nonthinking and visceral reaction of the “adult” (not to say superannuated) Trudovaya Rossiya is trash culture. Its fuehrer, the notorious Victor Anpilov, is no yahoo. Far from it. He’s got a degree in journalism from a really good Moscow school, speaks Spanish like Che Guevara and has served as a reporter for various Soviet media in several Latin American countries. But I defy anyone who has seen or heard him todetect the faintest traces of any of this. He acts the part of the paradigmatic Dumb Guy from the Sticks, the Ultimate Greaser, to perfection.

With Anpilov personally, this may be a matter of personal preferences. An old army buddy of his told me that, when in the ranks, the young Victor used to drink aftershave lotion—not out of any innate perversity or because of a lack of more conventional alcohol where they were stationed, but in order to, you see, improve the smell of his breath.

But it’s really in the format of his movement. Despite its name, “Labor Russia” doesn’t contain a lot of workers and has very feeble links with the labor movement. Whom it does contain is losers. Losers from all walks of life, no matter what social or personal circumstances have made them losers, gravitate naturally towards the TR and there embrace trash culture and start thinking and acting like yahoos. And I’m not just talking foul-smelling loud-mouthed short-tempered babushkas or Cossacks in faux-historical costumes here. An ultra-sophisticated scholar of dead Oriental languages, if he finds himself out of sync with his academic milieu and gravitates towards the Anpilovites, will, after a short stint with them, begin to proudly call himself a “lumpen,” painstakingly dress like one and spout all kinds of nonsense about “kikes” and the evils of oral sex. I’ve seen this happen.

The nonthinking and visceral reaction of the youthful and sprightly AKM is existentialism. In fact, that’s about the only feature the members of that movement have in common.

In Internet discussions following the bombing episode on the bridge, I’ve seen the AKM’s social base characterized both as “bespectacled geeks erroneously believing they will make more girls if they pretend to be Communists” and “pimply-faced vocational-school students from the working-class slums.” And, from personal experience, both statements are true—there are many guys and girls of both types in the group. There are also some wayward adolescents (practically children), a lot of glue-sniffin’, counterfeit-vodka-swillin’ punks, some more or less serious college students and young professionals plus a large proportion of nondescript girls who believe (quite correctly) that they will make more boys if they pretend to be Communists and … hang around a lot with a lot of boys. In fact, there was this girl one summer night, with whom I got drunk on Baltica No. 9 … but no, who the hell knows those weirdo AKMers, she may turn out to be able to read English after all. Well, ahem, yes … a common social base for the movement is hard to determine.

Ideologically… Well, there is in Moscow this Trotskyite madhouse called the Revolutionary Workers’ Party, famous for the size of the cockroaches infesting the pad of its leader and the coal-black hue of the once pink bed sheets they give visitors. They are also dedicated working-class activists and generally nice guys. So those Trotskyites decided to do this very Trotskyist thing called entryism, when you enter some totally alien organization and start subtly perverting its members to the Trotskyite orthodoxy. And they chose AKM, as AKM, despite all its vices, is, I believe, the largest Leftist youth organization in today’s Russia. And the Trots would come to every AKM meeting, have long talks with members and, sipping counterfeit vodka, they would start preaching their subtle and hidden message: “Workers’ democracy … permanent revolution … deformed workers’ state…” And the AKMers would nod and, sipping counterfeit vodka, comment: “Wow, man, that’s deep! Workers’ democracy! And a deformed workers’ state. Yep, that’s what it must have been: a deformed workers state! Gee, that’s cool!” The Trots, staggering from the effects of the counterfeit vodka, would go home very happy.

Then, one warm summer night, I came to the AKM lair and, though we Maoists disclaim the evil and revisionist Trotskyite practice of entryism, I just wanted to have a good talk with some members and, what the hell, try and convert some of them to Maoism. So, after the meeting was over, we installed ourselves comfortably on a bench, opened a bottle of counterfeit vodka and I began: “The revisionist Trotskyite theory of permanent revolution is a load of wank. On the other hand, Chairman Mao’s theory of continuous revolution is a glorious contribution… And this wasn’t no friggin’ deformed workers’ state: a social-imperialist state-capitalist superpower, that’s what it was. Now, concerning the Three Worlds Theory…” And they began nodding as wisely as a treeful of owls and commenting: “Wow, man, that’s deep! This … whaddayacallit … state-imperialist social-capitalist superpower! And the Three Worlds Theory! Gee, that’s cool!” The guy nodding especially wisely and agreeing with everything I was saying was a passing-by member of Dr. Limonov’s National-Bolshevik Party and, by his own admission, a nazi.

Organizationally… The acronym AKM is deciphered as the “Vanguard of Red Youth” (Avangard Krasnoi Molodyozhi), but it coincides with another Russian acronym: “Modified Kalashnikov Submachine Gun” (Avtomat Kalashnikova Modifitsirovanniy). The AKM’s rhetoric is full of such militaristic overtones: they’re all regimented into “platoons,” “companies” and the like, they have not chapter secretaries, but “platoon commanders”, etc. It doesn’t go beyond the rhetoric, though. A Ukrainian Leftist friend of mine once ran into my apartment steaming with rage. “I mean, just what do those FSB stooges, the AKM, think they are? Such an unashamed secret services provocation!” “Hey, man, hold on a sec,” I said, “What makes you think they are FSB?” “Why, their stickers in the metro, announcing the exact date of their meetings, giving the full address of the headquarters and all. It’s tantamount to saying ‘You are most welcome to come see us on Lubyanka!’” And though this ultra-cautious foreigner has yet to learn a lot about our local free-an-easy Leftist ways, in a sense he was right. Anyone is free to walk into their headquarters and take part in the debates. There is very little accountability. The movement must be infiltrated to its ears. And they couldn’t care less. They aren’t existentialists for nothing.

I don’t mean existentialist as in Jean-Paul Sartre. I mean existentialist as in “Do It!”, “Ona Move!”, “Too Drunk To Fuck” and so on. These are the real guiding principles of the movement and not any fancy frills written in their program like “the dictatorship of the proletariat” or even “Soviet patriotism.” If their elder comrades find consolation in being uncouth trashy greasers and in their Tolkienesque nostalgia for the Blessed Realm of the Soviet Union, then the AKMers get their kicks by being spontaneous and acting on the spur of the moment. Hence the high percentage of punks, hence the counterfeit vodka, hence the anonymous Baltica-No.-9-stained sexual relationships, hence the style of their political work. Take this guy Alexander Shalimov who was walking to (or from—I forget the details) the AKM headquarters after some rally in the fall of 2001 and spotted a Church of Scientology building on the way. “Fuck the bastards, this L. Ron Hubbard guy was a really mediocre sci-fi writer plus the Scientologists are a friggin’ zombie cult and all that…” These or similar thoughts must have raced though his head as he hurled a bottle of Molotov cocktail into the window. He was convicted of hooliganism and is now serving a two-year sentence. His trial was a farce, he is undoubtedly a political prisoner and we demand his immediate release, and, come to think of it, the Church of Scientology is a friggin’ zombie cult. But you get the picture. The AKM were also one of the most militant sections at the “Anticapitalism-2002” rally last fall. Nine members of the movement were arrested by OMON and two of them, including the recent bombing hero, Igor Fedorovich, were given a savage beating.

Russian punk icon Egor Letov was for a long time a close associate of the AKM and gave many concerts under the group’s auspices (however, I don’t believe he is or has ever been an actual member). It is easy to see why. Though Letov has a degree of sophistication that most AKM members can never hope to attain, the basic “Do It!“ ethos, the basic existentialism is the same. When Letov was a budding anti-Communist (what else do you expect? “I’ll always be against” is a programmatic line from one of his songs) punk singer in the late eighties, the evil Sovok authorities locked him up in a bughouse. This was in a cold windswept Siberian town. Opposite the mental hospital there was an apartment house under construction. And the only dream in Egor’s life at that period was to escape from the asylum. He didn’t hope so survive for long in the bitter frost in the thin hospital clothes—and the first militiaman would have stopped him. What he wanted was to run as quick as he could to the top of the house opposite and jump down from it, thus ending his misery. That’s a story any true-blue AKMer will have no difficulty in relating to.

The AKM has also nourished an interesting rock singer in its own bosom, somewhat in the Egor Letov vein, only more naïve. His name is Ivan Baranov and his stomach-twirling ultra-romantic anthems are about red stars and hammers and sickles flaming in the sky, the grass swept by the wind in the boundless steppes, about how the red sun of Revolution will rise for all of us… When drunk, I’m literally moved to tears.

Let’s Get Serious for a Moment

If I go on for much longer (and if the long-suffering eXile editors decide to publish my piece), I’m afraid I’ll exhaust the paper’s none-too-plentiful royalties fund with these endless thousands upon thousands of words. So let’s wind up with some conclusions and the aftermath of the events.

The whole story sucks. I mean, absolutely. It’s a shame and a sin that the largest Leftist youth group in the country should be so disoriented and fuzzy (as in “fuzzy from too much counterfeit vodka” and as in “fuzzy logic”). It’s a shame and a sin that a guy under psychiatric care should have been allowed to run round unsupervised within a self-proclaimed revolutionary organization and that he should even now be widely regarded by the AKMers as a hero. It’s a shame and a sin that the number of political prisoners in Russia should be rapidly growing each year, the absolute majority of them being Leftist political prisoners. It’s a shame and a sin that we’ve got such a proto-fascist police state here in Russia that the idea of the whole thing having been cooked up (or stage-managed) by the secret services comes most naturally to one’s mind. It’s a shame and a sin, the kind of evidence Igor Fedorovich the Sapper is now giving to his interrogators.

Whether it is his mental illness (as suggested by some observers) or the beatings he’s being subjected to in detention (as suggested by others), but the picture painted by the Sapper is truly grandiose. He speaks of a mammoth terrorist plot in which he was just “a pawn.” He says that ideologically the terrorist network is a “Trotskyite—Stalinist bloc” headed by Victor Anpilov and the above-mentioned Trotskyite leader, Sergei, the one with the cockroaches and the weird-colored bed linen. The latter, Fedorovich alleges, recruited him last summer “under threat of brutal physical punishment” and had allegedly promised him $1,000 for the Mosgortrans bombing. Hey, bleeding-heart human rights junkies and connoisseurs of the 1937 show trials, rings any bells?

These allegations have resulted in numerous searches and interrogations in Leftist milieus in Moscow. Sergei, who, bar the cockroaches and his Trot dogmaticism, is a serious, progressive and valuable comrade, had his apartment searched on Feb 11. Confiscated from him were prescription drugs, fertilizer for his window plants, papers and diskettes, not to mention the hard disk of his computer. He himself was detained as a suspect and taken for interrogation to the Moscow City CID.

“This whole affair smells of shit,” he told reporters afterwards.

You’re right, Comrade Sergei, it does. As does the entire framework of the Russian Federation. It stinks of shit and blood and filthy lucre and injustice and the sweat of workers treated as subhumans—all sorts of intolerable smells.

High time to deodorize the place.