February 4, 1964
[SOURCE: by the Editorial Departments of Renmin Ribao (People’s Daily) and Hongqi (Red Flag), Foreign Languages Press, Peking, 1964]
NEVER before has the unity of the international communist movement been so gravely threatened as it is today when we are witnessing a deluge of modern revisionist ideology. Both internationally and inside individual Parties, fierce struggles are going on between Marxism-Leninism and revisionism. The international communist movement is confronted with an unprecedentedly serious danger of a split.
It is the urgent task of the Communists, the proletariat and the revolutionary people of the world to defend the unity of the socialist camp and of the international communist movement.
The Communist Party of China has made consistent and unremitting efforts to defend and strengthen the unity of the socialist camp and the international communist movement in accordance with Marxism-Leninism and the revolutionary principles of the 1957 Declaration and the 1960 Statement. It has been and remains the unswerving position of the Chinese Communist Party to uphold principle, uphold unity, eliminate differences and strengthen the struggle against our common enemy.
Ever since they embarked on the path of revisionism, the leaders of the CPSU have tirelessly professed their devotion to the unity of the international communist movement. Of late, they have been particularly active in crying for “unity”. This calls to mind what Engels said ninety years ago. “One must not allow oneself to be misled by the cry for ‘unity’. Those who have this word most often on their lips are the ones who sow the most dissension....” “... the biggest sectarians and the biggest brawlers and rogues at times shout loudest for unity.” (“Engels to A. Bebel, June 20, 1873”, Selected Correspondence of Marx and Engels, Foreign Languages Publishing House, Moscow, p. 345.)
While presenting themselves as champions of unity, the leaders of the CPSU are trying to pin the label of splittism on the Chinese Communist Party. In its Open Letter the Central Committee of the CPSU says:
The Chinese leaders are undermining the unity not only of the socialist camp but of the entire world communist movement, trampling on the principles of proletarian internationalism and grossly violating accepted standards of relations between fraternal parties.
And the subsequent articles published in the Soviet press have been condemning the Chinese Communists as “sectarians” and “splitters”.
But what are the facts? Who is undermining the unity of the socialist camp? Who is undermining the unity of the international communist movement? Who is trampling on the principles of proletarian internationalism? And who is grossly violating the accepted standards of relations between fraternal Parties? In other words, who are the real, out-and-out splitters?
Only when these questions are properly answered can we find the way to defend and strengthen the unity of the socialist camp and the international communist movement and overcome the danger of a split.
In order to gain a clear understanding of the nature of splittism in the present international communist movement and to struggle against it in the correct way, let us look back on the history of the international communist movement over the past century or so.
The struggle between Marxism-Leninism and opportunism and between the forces defending unity and those creating splits runs through the history of the development of the communist movement. This is the case both in individual countries and on the international plane. In this prolonged struggle, Marx, Engels and Lenin expounded the true essence of proletarian unity on a theoretical level and, by their deeds, set brilliant examples in combating opportunism, revisionism and splittism.
In 1847 Marx and Engels founded the earliest international working-class organization — the Communist League. In the Communist Manifesto, which they wrote as the programme of the League, Marx and Engels advanced the militant call, “Workers of All Countries, Unite!” and gave a systematic and profound exposition of scientific communism, thus laying the ideological basis for the unity of the international proletariat.
Throughout their lives Marx and Engels worked unremittingly for this principled unity of the international proletariat.
In 1864 they established the First International, the International Working Men’s Association, to unite the workers’ movements of all countries. Throughout the period of the First International they waged principled struggles against the Bakuninists, Proudhonists, Blanquists, Lassalleans, etc., the fiercest struggle being that against the Bakuninist splitters.
The Bakuninists attacked Marx’s theory from the very beginning. They charged Marx with wanting to make his “particular programme and personal doctrine dominant in the International”. In fact, however, it was they who tried to impose the dogmas of their sect on the International and to replace the programme of the International with Bakunin’s opportunist programme. They resorted to one intrigue after another, lined up a “majority” by hook or by crook and engaged in sectarian and divisive activities.
To defend the genuine unity of the international proletariat, Marx and Engels took an uncompromising and principled stand against the open challenge of the Bakuninist splitters to the First International. In 1872 the Bakuninists who persisted in their splitting activities were expelled from the International at its Hague Congress, in which Marx personally participated.
Engels said that if the Marxists had adopted an unprincipled and conciliatory attitude towards the divisive activities of the Bakuninists at the Hague, it would have had grave consequences for the international working-class movement. He stated, “Then the International would indeed have gone to pieces — gone to pieces through ‘unity’!”. (“Engels to A. Bebel, June 20, 1873”, Selected Correspondence of Marx and Engels, FLPH, Moscow, p. 346.)
Led by Marx and Engels, the First International fought against opportunism and splittism and laid the basis for the supremacy of Marxism in the international working-class movement.
With the announcement of the end of the First International in 1876 there began the successive establishment of mass socialist workers’ parties in many countries. Marx and Engels followed the establishment and development of these parties with close attention in the hope that they would be established and developed on the basis of scientific communism.
Marx and Engels devoted particular attention and concern to the German Social-Democratic Party which then occupied an important position in the working-class movement in Europe. On many occasions, they sharply criticized the German Party for its rotten spirit of compromise with opportunism in the pursuit of “unity”.
In 1875 they criticized the German Social-Democratic Party for its union with the Lassalleans at the expense of principle and for the resultant Gotha Programme. Marx pointed out that this union was “bought too dearly” and that the Gotha Programme was “a thoroughly objectionable programme that demoralizes the Party”. (“Marx to W. Bracke, May 5, 1875”, Selected Correspondence of Marx and Engels, FLPH, Moscow, pp. 360, 361.) Engels pointed out that it was a “bending of the knee to Lassalleanism on the part of the whole German socialist proletariat”, adding, “I am convinced that a union on this basis will not last a year.” (“Engels to A. Bebel, March 18-28. 1875”, Selected Correspondence of Marx and Engels, FLPH, Moscow, p. 358.)
In criticizing the Gotha Programme. Marx put forward the well-known principle that for Marxists “there would be no haggling about principles’” (“Marx to W. Bracke, May 5. 1875”, Selected Correspondence of Marx and Engels, FLPH, Moscow, p. 361.)
Later Marx and Engels again sharply criticized the leaders of the German Party for tolerating the activities of the opportunists inside the Party. Marx said that these opportunists tried “to replace its materialistic basis... by modern mythology with its goddesses of Justice, Liberty, Equality and Fraternity” (“Marx to F. A. Sorge, October 19, 1877”. Selected Correspondence of Marx and Engels, FLPH, Moscow, p. 376) and that this was a “vulgarization of Party and theory”. (‘Marx to F. A. Sorge, September 19, 1879’. Selected Correspondence of Marx and Engels, FLPH. Moscow, p. 396.) In their “Circular Letter” to the leaders of the German Party, Marx and Engels wrote:
For almost forty years we have stressed the class struggle as the immediate driving power of history, and in particular the class struggle between bourgeoisie and proletariat as the great lever of the modern social revolution; it is, therefore, impossible for us to co-operate with people who wish to expunge this class struggle from the movement. (“Marx and Engels to A. Bebel, W. Liebknecht, W. Bracke and Others (‘Circular Letter’), September 17-18, 1879”. Selected Correspondence, FLPH, Moscow. p. 395.)
Founded under Engels’ influence in 1889, the Second International existed in a period when capitalism was developing “peacefully”. While Marxism became widespread and the Communist Manifesto became the common programme of tens of millions of workers everywhere during this period, the socialist parties in many countries blindly worshipped bourgeois legality instead of utilizing it and became legalists, thus opening the floodgates for opportunism.
Hence, throughout the period of the Second International., the international working-class movement was divided into two main groups, the revolutionary Marxists and the pseudo-Marxian opportunists.
Engels waged irreconcilable struggles against the opportunists. He refuted with particular sharpness their fallacies on the peaceful evolution of capitalism into socialism. He said of those opportunists who posed as Marxists that Marx “would repeat to these gentlemen what Heine had said of his imitators: I sowed dragons but I reaped fleas”. (“Engels’ Letter to Paul Lafargue, October 27, 1890”, quoted in Marx and Engels on Literature and Art, French ed., Edition Sociales, Paris, 1954, p. 258.)
After the death of Engels in 1895, these fleas came out for the open and systematic revision of Marxism and gradually took over the leadership of the Second International.
As the outstanding revolutionary in the international working-class movement after Engels, the great Lenin shouldered the heavy responsibility of defending Marxism and opposing the revisionism of the Second International.
When the revisionists of the Second International howled that Marxism was “incomplete” and “outmoded”, Lenin solemnly declared. “We take our stand entirely on the Marxist theoretical position”, because revolutionary theory “unites all socialists”. (“Our Programme”, Collected Works, FLPH, Moscow, 1960, Vol. 4. pp. 210, 211.)
Above all, Lenin fought to create a Marxist party in Russia. In order to build a party of the new type, differing fundamentally from the opportunist parties of the Second International, he waged uncompromising struggles against the various anti-Marxist factions inside the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party.
Like other parties of the Second International, the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party had a revolutionary as well as an opportunist group. The Bolsheviks led by Lenin constituted the former and the Mensheviks the latter.
The Bolsheviks led by Lenin conducted prolonged theoretical and political struggles against the Mensheviks in order to safeguard the unity of the proletarian party and the purity of its ranks, and finally in 1912 expelled the Mensheviks for their persistence in opportunism and splitting activities.
All the opportunist factions abused Lenin in the most vicious language. They tried by every means to label him a splitter. Lining up with all the anti-Leninist factions and raising the banner of “non-factionalism”, Trotsky wantonly attacked the Bolshevik Party and Lenin, whom he called a “usurper” and “splitter”. Lenin replied that Trotsky, who paraded as “non-factional”, was “a representative of the ‘worst remnants of factionalism”’ (“Disruption of Unity Under Cover of Outcries for Unity”, Lenin, Selected Works, FLPH, Moscow, 1950 Vol. 1. Part 2, p. 251) and “the worst of splitters’” (“The Collapse of the ‘August’ Bloc”, Collected Works, 4th Russian ed., Moscow, Vol. 20, p. 142.)
Lenin put it clearly: ‘Unity — a great cause and a great slogan! But the workers’ cause requires the unity of the Marxists and not the unity of the Marxists with the opponents and distorters of Marxism.” (“Unity”, Collected Works, 4th Russian ed., Moscow, Vol. 20, p. 211.)
Lenin’s struggle against the Mensheviks was of great international significance, for Menshevism was a Russian form and variant of the revisionism of the Second International and was supported by the revisionist leaders of the Second International.
While combating the Mensheviks, Lenin also waged a series of struggles against the revisionism of the Second International.
Before World War I, Lenin criticized the revisionists of the Second International on the theoretical and political plane and fought them face to face at the Stuttgart and Copenhagen Congresses.
When World War I broke out, the leaders of the Second International openly betrayed the proletariat. Serving the imperialists’ interests, they urged the proletarians of different countries to slaughter each other and thus brought about a most serious split in the international proletariat. As Rosa Luxemburg said, the revisionists turned the previous proud slogan of “Workers of all countries, unite!” into the command on the battlefield, “Workers of all countries, slay one another!” (“Either — Or”, Selected Speeches and Writings of Rosa Luxemburg, German ed., Dietz Verlag, Berlin, 1951, Vol. 2, p. 534.)
The Social-Democratic Party of Germany, Marx’s native land, was then the most powerful and influential party in the Second International. It was the first to side with the imperialists of its own country, and thus became the arch-criminal splitting the international working-class movement.
At this critical juncture, Lenin stepped forward to fight resolutely in defence of the unity of the international proletariat.
In his article ‘The Tasks of Revolutionary Social-Democracy in the European War” circulated in August 1914, Lenin proclaimed the collapse of the Second International and sternly condemned most of its leaders, and in particular those of the German Social-Democratic Party, for their overt betrayal of socialism.
In view of the fact that the revisionists of the Second International had turned their secret alliance with the bourgeoisie into an open alliance and that they had made the split in the international working-class movement irrevocable, Lenin stated,
It is impossible to carry out the tasks of Socialism at the present time, it is impossible to achieve real international unity of the workers, without a determined rupture with opportunism and explaining to the masses the inevitability of its bankruptcy. (“The War and Russian Social-Democracy”, Selected Works, FLPH, Moscow, Vol. 1, Part 2, p. 403.)
For this reason, Lenin staunchly supported the Marxists in breaking with the opportunists in many European countries and boldly called for the establishment of a third International to replace the bankrupt Second International so as to rebuild the revolutionary unity of the international proletariat. The Third International was founded in March 1919. It inherited the positive achievements of the Second International and discarded its opportunist, social chauvinist, bourgeois and petty-bourgeois rubbish. Thus it enabled the revolutionary cause of the international proletariat to grow both in breadth and depth.
Lenin’s theory and practice carried Marxism to a new stage in its development — the stage of Leninism. On the basis of Marxism-Leninism, the unity of the international proletariat and the international communist movement was further strengthened and expanded.
What does the history of the development of the international communist movement demonstrate ?
First, it demonstrates that like everything else, the international working-class movement tends to divide itself in two. The class struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie is inevitably reflected in the communist ranks. It is inevitable that opportunism of one kind or another should arise in the course of the development of the communist movement, that opportunists should engage in anti-Marxist-Leninist splitting activities and that Marxist-Leninists should wage struggles against opportunism and splittism. It is precisely through this struggle of opposites that Marxism-Leninism and the international working-class movement have developed. And it is also through this struggle that the international working-class movement has strengthened and consolidated its unity on the basis of Marxism-Leninism.
The movement of the proletariat necessarily passes through different stages of development; at every stage part of the people get stuck and do not join in the further advance; and this alone explains why it is that actually the “solidarity of the proletariat” is everywhere being realized in different party groupings, which carry on life-and-death feuds with one another.... (“Engels to A. Bebel, June 20, 1873”. Selected Correspondence of Marx and Engels, FLPH, Moscow, p 347.)
This is exactly what happened. The Communist League, the First International and the Second International, all of which were originally unified, divided in two in the course of their development and became two conflicting parts. Each time the international struggle against opportunism and splittism carried the international working-class movement forward to a new stage and enabled it to forge a firmer and broader unity on a new basis. The victory of the October Revolution and the founding of the Third International were the greatest achievements in the struggle against the Second International’s revisionism and splittism. Unity, struggle or even splits, and a new unity on a new basis — such is the dialectics of the development of the international working-class movement.
Secondly, the history of the international communist movement demonstrates that in every period the struggle between the defenders of unity and the creators of splits is in essence one between Marxism-Leninism and opportunism-revisionism, between the upholders of Marxism and the traitors to Marxism.
Both internationally and in individual countries, genuine proletarian unity is possible only on the basis of Marxism-Leninism.
Both internationally and in individual countries, wherever opportunism and revisionism are rampant, a split becomes inevitable in the proletarian ranks. Every split in the communist movement is invariably caused by the opportunist-revisionist opposition to and betrayal of Marxism-Leninism.
What is splittism?
It means a split with Marxism-Leninism. Anyone who opposes and betrays Marxism-Leninism and undermines the basis of proletarian unity is a splitter.
It means a split with the revolutionary proletarian party. Anyone who persists in a revisionist line and turns a revolutionary proletarian party into a reformist bourgeois party is a splitter.
It means a split with the revolutionary proletariat and the broad masses of the working people. Anyone who follows a programme and line running counter to the revolutionary will and fundamental interests of the proletariat and the working people is a splitter.
Lenin said, “Where the majority of the class-conscious workers have rallied around precise and definite decisions there is unity of opinion and action,” while opportunism “is, in fact, schism, in that it most unblushingly thwarts the will of the majority of the workers.” (“Disruption of Unity Under Cover of Outcries for Unity”, Selected Works FLPH, Moscow, Vol. 1, Part 2, pp. 255 and 258.)
By disrupting proletarian unity, splittism serves the bourgeoisie and meets its needs. It is the consistent policy of the bourgeoisie to create splits within the ranks of the proletariat. Its most sinister method of doing so is to buy over or cultivate agents within the proletarian ranks. And agents of the bourgeoisie are exactly what the opportunists and revisionists are. So far from seeking to unite the proletariat in the fight against the bourgeoisie, they want the proletariat to co-operate with it. This was what the revisionists of the Second International, such as Bernstein and Kautsky, did. At a time when the imperialists were most afraid that the proletariat of all countries would unite to turn the imperialist war into civil wars, they came forward to create a split in the international working-class movement and advocate co-operation between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie.
The splitters in the communist ranks are those who, to meet the needs of the bourgeoisie, split with Marxism-Leninism, with the revolutionary proletarian party and with the revolutionary proletariat and the broad masses of the labouring people; and they remain splitters even when for a time they are in the majority or hold the leading posts.
In the days of the Second International, the revisionists represented by Bernstein and Kautsky were in the majority, and the Marxists represented by Lenin were in the minority. Yet obviously it was Bernstein, Kautsky and other opportunists who were the splitters, and not revolutionaries like Lenin.
In 1904 the Mensheviks were the splitters although they held leading positions which they had usurped in the central organs of the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party. Lenin pointed out at the time, “The leading centres (the Central Organ, the Central Committee, and the Council) have broken with the Party,” and “the centres have put themselves outside the Party. There is no middle ground; one is either with the centres or with the Party.” (“A Letter to the Zurich Group of Bolsheviks”, Collected Works, FLPH, Moscow, 1962, Vol. 8. pp. 63 and 64.)
In brief, opportunism and revisionism are the political and ideological roots of splittism. And splittism is the organizational manifestation of opportunism and revisionism. It can also be said that opportunism and revisionism are splittism as well as sectarianism. The revisionists are the greatest and vilest splitters and sectarians in the communist movement.
Thirdly, the history of the international communist movement demonstrates that proletarian unity has been consolidated and has developed through struggle against opportunism, revisionism and splittism. The struggle for unity is inseparably connected with the struggle for principle.
The unity the proletariat requires is class unity, revolutionary unity, unity against the common enemy and for or the great goal of communism. The unity of the international proletariat has its theoretical and political basis in Marxism-Leninism. Only when it has theoretical and political unity can the international proletariat have organizational cohesion and unity of action.
The genuine revolutionary unity of the proletariat can be attained only by upholding principle and upholding Marxism-Leninism. Unity bought by forsaking principles and by wallowing in the mire with opportunists ceases to be proletarian unity; instead, as Lenin said, it “means in practice unity of the proletariat with the national bourgeoisie and a split in the international proletariat, unity of lackeys and a split among the revolutionists”. (“The Honest Voice of a French Socialist”, Collected Works, International Publishers, New York. 1930, Vol. 18, p. 329.)
He also pointed out that “as the bourgeoisie will not die until it is overthrown”, so the opportunist current bribed and supported by the bourgeoisie “will not die if it is not ‘killed’, i.e., overthrown, deprived of every influence among the Socialist proletariat”. Hence, it is necessary to wage “a merciless struggle against the current of opportunism”. (Ibid.)
Faced with the challenge of the opportunist-revisionists who are openly splitting the international communist movement, the Marxist-Leninists must make no compromise in matters of principle, but must resolutely combat this splittism. This is an invaluable behest of Marx, Engels and Lenin, as well as the only correct way to safeguard the unity of the international communist movement.
The events of recent years show that the leaders of the CPSU headed by Khrushchov have become the chief representatives of modern revisionism as well as the greatest splitters in the international communist movement.
Between the 20th and 22nd Congresses of the CPSU, the leaders of the CPSU developed a rounded system of revisionism. They put forward a revisionist line which contravenes the proletarian revolution and the dictatorship of the proletariat, a line which consists of “peaceful coexistence”, “peaceful competition”, “peaceful transition”, “a state of the whole people” and “a party of the entire people”. They have tried to impose this revisionist line on all fraternal Parties as a substitute for the common line of the international communist movement which was laid down at the meetings of fraternal Parties in 1957 and 1960. And they have attacked anyone who perseveres in the Marxist-Leninist line and resists their revisionist line.
The leaders of the CPSU have themselves undermined the basis of the unity of the international communist movement and created the present grave danger of a split by betraying Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism and pushing their revisionist and divisive line.
Far from working to consolidate and expand the socialist camp, the leaders of the CPSU have endeavoured to split and disintegrate it. They have thus made a mess of the splendid socialist camp.
They have violated the principles guiding relations among fraternal countries as laid down in the Declaration and the Statement, pursued a policy of great-power chauvinism and national egoism towards fraternal socialist countries and thus disrupted the unity of the socialist camp.
They have arbitrarily infringed the sovereignty of fraternal countries, interfered in their internal affairs, carried on subversive activities and striven in every way to control fraternal countries.
In the name of the “international division of labour”, the leaders of the CPSU oppose the adoption by fraternal countries of the policy of building socialism by their own efforts and developing their economies on an independent basis, and attempt to turn them into economic appendages. They have tried to force those fraternal countries which are comparatively backward economically to abandon industrialization and become their sources of raw materials and markets for surplus products.
The leaders of the CPSU are quite unscrupulous in their pursuit of the policy of great-power chauvinism. They have constantly brought political, economic and even military pressure to bear on fraternal countries.
The leaders of the CPSU have openly called for the overthrow of the Party and government leaders of Albania, brashly severed all economic and diplomatic relations with her and tyrannically deprived her of her legitimate rights as a member of the Warsaw Treaty Organization and the Council of Economic Mutual Assistance.
The leaders of the CPSU have violated the Sino-Soviet Treaty of Friendship, Alliance and Mutual Assistance, made a unilateral decision to withdraw 1,390 Soviet experts working in China, to tear up 343 contracts and supplementary contracts on the employment of experts and to cancel 257 projects of scientific and technical co-operation, and pursued a restrictive and discriminatory trade policy against China. They have provoked incidents on the Sino-Soviet border and carried on large-scale subversive activities in Sinkiang. On more than one occasion, Khrushchov went so far as to tell leading comrades of the Central Committee of the CPC that certain anti-Party elements in the Chinese Communist Party were his “good friends”. He has praised Chinese anti-Party elements for attacking the Chinese Party’s general line for socialist construction, the big leap forward and the people’s communes, describing their action as a “manly act”.
Such measures which gravely worsen state relations are rare even between capitalist countries. But again and again the leaders of the CPSU have adopted shocking and extreme measures of this kind against fraternal socialist countries. Yet they go on prating about being “faithful to proletarian internationalism”. We would like to ask, is there a shred of internationalism in all these deeds of yours?
The great-power chauvinism and splittism of the leaders of the CPSU are equally glaring in their conduct vis-a-vis fraternal Parties.
Since the 20th Congress of the CPSU its leaders have tried, on the pretext of “combating the personality cult”, to change the leadership of other fraternal Parties to conform to their will. Right up to the present they have insisted on “combating the personality cult” as a precondition for the restoration of unity and as a “principle” which is “obligatory on every Communist Party”.
Contrary to the principles guiding relations among fraternal Parties laid down in the Declaration and the Statement, the leaders of the CPSU ignore the independent and equal status of fraternal Parties, insist on establishing a kind of feudal patriarchal domination over the international communist movement and turn the relations between brother Parties into those between a patriarchal father and his sons. Khrushchov has more than once described a fraternal Party as a “silly boy” and called himself its “mother”. With his feudal psychology of self-exaltation, he has absolutely no sense of shame.
The leaders of the CPSU have completely ignored the principle of achieving unanimity through consultation among fraternal Parties and habitually make dictatorial decisions and order others about. They have recklessly torn up joint agreements with fraternal Parties, taken arbitrary decisions on important matters of common concern to fraternal Parties and forced faits accomplis on them.
The leaders of the CPSU have violated the principle that differences among fraternal Parties should be settled through inter-Party consultation; they first used their own Party congress and then the congresses of other fraternal Parties as rostrums for large-scale public attacks against those fraternal Parties which firmly uphold Marxism-Leninism.
The leaders of the CPSU regard fraternal Parties as pawns on their diplomatic chessboard. Khrushchov plays fast and loose, he blows hot and cold, he talks one way one day and another the next, and yet he insists on the fraternal Parties dancing to his every tune without knowing whence or whither.
The leaders of the CPSU have stirred up trouble and created splits in many Communist Parties by encouraging the followers of their revisionist line in these Parties to attack the leadership, or usurp leading positions, persecute Marxist-Leninists and even expel them from the Party. It is this divisive policy of the leaders of the CPSU that has given rise to organizational splits in the fraternal Parties of many capitalist countries.
The leaders of the CPSU have turned the magazine Problems of Peace and Socialism, originally the common journal of fraternal Parties, into an instrument for spreading revisionism, sectarianism and splittism and for making unscrupulous attacks on Marxist-Leninist fraternal Parties in violation of the agreement reached at the meeting at which the magazine was founded.
In addition, they are imposing the revisionist line on the international democratic organizations, changing the correct line pursued by these organizations and trying to create splits in them.
The leaders of the CPSU have completely reversed enemies and comrades. They have directed the edge of struggle, which should be against U.S. imperialism and its lackeys, against the Marxist-Leninist fraternal Parties and countries.
The leaders of the CPSU are bent on seeking Soviet-U.S. co-operation for the domination of the world, they regard U.S. imperialism, the most ferocious enemy of the people of the world, as their most reliable friend, and they treat the fraternal Parties and countries adhering to Marxism-Leninism as their enemy. They collude with U.S. imperialism, the reactionaries of various countries, the renegade Tito clique and the Right-wing social democrats in a partnership against the socialist fraternal countries, the fraternal Parties, the Marxist-Leninists and the revolutionary people of all countries.
When they snatch at a straw from Eisenhower or Kennedy or others like them, or think that things are going smoothly for them, the leaders of the CPSU are beside themselves with joy, hit out wildly at the fraternal Parties and countries adhering to Marxism-Leninism, and endeavour to sacrifice fraternal Parties and countries on the altar of their political dealings with U.S. imperialism.
When their wrong policies come to grief and they find themselves in difficulties, the leaders of the CPSU become angrier and more red-faced than ever, again hit out wildly at the fraternal Parties and countries adhering to Marxism-Leninism, and try to make others their scapegoats.
These facts show that the leaders of the CPSU have taken the road of complete betrayal of proletarian internationalism, in contravention of the interests of the Soviet people, the socialist camp and the international communist movement and those of all revolutionary people.
These facts clearly demonstrate that the leaders of the CPSU counterpose their revisionism to Marxism-Leninism, their great-power chauvinism and national egoism to proletarian internationalism and their sectarianism and splittism to the international unity of the proletariat. Thus, like all the opportunists and revisionists of the past, the leaders of the CPSU have turned into creators of splits in many fraternal Parties, the socialist camp and the entire international communist movement.
The revisionism and splittism of the leaders of the CPSU constitute a greater danger than those of any other opportunists and splitters, whether past or present. As everyone knows, this revisionism is occurring in the CPSU, the Party which was created by Lenin and which has enjoyed the highest prestige among all Communist Parties; it is occurring in the great Soviet Union, the first socialist country. For many years, Marxist-Leninists and revolutionary people the world over have held the CPSU in high esteem and regarded the Soviet Union as the base of world revolution and the model of struggle. And the leaders of the CPSU have taken advantage of all this — of the prestige of the Party created by Lenin and of the first socialist country — to cover up the essence of their revisionism and splittism and deceive those who are still unaware of the truth. At the same time, these past masters in double-dealing are shouting “unity, unity”, while actually engaged in splitting. To a certain extent, their tricks do temporarily confuse people. Traditional confidence in the CPSU and ignorance of the facts have prevented quite a few people from recognizing the revisionism and splittism of the leaders of the CPSU sooner.
Because the leaders of the CPSU exercise state power in a large socialist country which exerts world-wide influence, their revisionist and divisive line has done far greater harm to the international communist movement and the proletarian cause of world revolution than that of any of the opportunists and splitters of the past.
It can be said that the leaders of the CPSU are the greatest of all revisionists as well as the greatest of all sectarians and splitters known to history.
It is already clear that the revisionism and splittism of the leaders of the CPSU have greatly assisted the spread of the revisionist torrent internationally and rendered enormous service to imperialism and the reactionaries of all countries.
The revisionism and splittism of the leaders of the CPSU are the product both of the lush growth of the bourgeois elements inside the Soviet Union, and of imperialist policy, and particularly of the U.S. imperialist policies of nuclear blackmail and “peaceful evolution”. In turn, their revisionist and divisive theories and policies cater not only to the widespread capitalist forces at home but also to imperialism, and serve to paralyse the revolutionary will and to obstruct the revolutionary struggle of the people of the world.
Indeed, the leaders of the CPSU have already won warm praise and applause from imperialism and its lackeys.
The U.S. imperialists praise Khrushchov especially for his splitting activities in the international communist movement. They say, “It seems clear that Khrushchev is sufficiently in earnest in his desire for a detente with the West that he is willing to risk a split in the Communist movement to achieve it.” “Nikita Khrushchev has destroyed, irrevocably, the unified bloc of Stalin’s day. That is perhaps Khrushchev’s greatest service — not to Communism, but to the Western world.” “We ought to be grateful for his mishandling of his relationship with the Chinese.... We should be grateful for his introducing disarray into international Communism by a lot of quite bumptious and sudden initiatives.”
They firmly believe that Khrushchov is “the best Soviet Prime Minister the west can expect to treat with and... it must try for the time being to avoid any action that might further weaken his position”. They say, “The Administration is now convinced that the U.S. should offer Khrushchev maximum support in his dispute with Red China.”
The Trotskyites, who have long been politically bankrupt, are among those applauding the leaders of the CPSU. The former actively support the latter on such fundamental issues as the attitude one should take towards Stalin, towards U.S. imperialism and towards the Yugoslav revisionists. They say, “The situation created by the Twentieth Congress of the CPSU and still more by the Twenty-second Congress is eminently favourable for the revival of our movement in the workers states themselves.” “We have prepared for this for more than 25 years. Now we must move in, and move energetically.” “In relation to the Khrushchev tendency, we will give a critical support to its struggle for destalinisation against the more conservative tendencies....”
Just consider! All the enemies of revolution support the leaders of the CPSU with alacrity. The reason is that they have found a common language with the leaders of the CPSU in their approach to Marxism-Leninism and world revolution, and that the revisionist and divisive line of the leaders of the CPSU meets the counter-revolutionary needs of U.S. imperialism.
As Lenin said, the bourgeoisie understands that “the active people in the working class movement who adhere to the opportunist trend are better defenders of the bourgeoisie, than the bourgeoisie itself ”. (“The International Situation and the Fundamental Tasks of the Communist International”, Selected Works, New York, Vol. 10, p. 196.) The imperialist lords and masters are gleefully letting the leaders of the CPSU clear the way for the destruction of the proletarian cause of world revolution.
Having brought on the serious danger of a split in the international communist movement, the leaders of the CPSU are trying to shift the blame, vilifying the Chinese Communist Party and other Marxist-Leninist parties as guilty of “splittism” and “sectarianism” and fabricating a host of charges against them.
Here we deem it necessary to take up some of their chief slanders and to refute them one by one.
The leaders of the CPSU accuse all who resist and criticize their revisionism and splittism of being anti-Soviet. This is a terrifying charge. To oppose the first socialist country in the world and the Party founded by the great Lenin — what insolence!
But we advise the leaders of the CPSU not to indulge in histrionics. The anti-Soviet charge can never apply to us.
We also advise the leaders of the CPSU not to become self-intoxicated. The anti-Soviet charge can never silence Marxist-Leninists.
Together with all other Communists and revolutionary people the world over, we Chinese Communists have always cherished sincere respect and love for the great Soviet people, the Soviet state and the Soviet Communist Party. For it was the people of the Soviet Union who, under the leadership of Lenin’s Party, lit the triumphant torch of the October Revolution, opened up the new era of world proletarian revolution and marched in the van along the road to communism in the years that followed. It was the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and the Soviet state which, under the leadership of Lenin and Stalin, pursued a Marxist-Leninist domestic and foreign policy, scored unprecedented achievements in socialist construction, made the greatest contribution to victory in the war against fascism and gave internationalist support to the revolutionary struggles of the proletariat and working people of all other countries.
Not long before his death, Stalin said:
... representatives of the fraternal parties, in their admiration for the daring and success of our Party, conferred upon it the title of the “Shock Brigade” of the world revolutionary and labour movement. By this, they were expressing the hope that the successes of the “Shock Brigade” would help to ease the position of the peoples languishing under the yoke of capitalism. I think that our Party has justified these hopes.... (Speech at the Nineteenth Congress of the Party, FLPH, Moscow, 1952, p. 9.)
He was right in saying that the Soviet Party built by Lenin had justified the hopes of all Communists. The Soviet Party was worthy of the admiration and support it won from all the fraternal Parties, including the Chinese Communist Party.
But, beginning with the 20th Congress, the leaders of the CPSU headed by Khrushchov have been launching violent attacks on Stalin and taking the road of revisionism.
Is it possible to say that they have justified the hopes of all Communists? No, it is not. In its Proposal Concerning the General Line of the International Communist Movement, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China points out that it is the common demand of the people in the countries of the socialist camp and of the international proletariat and working people that all Communist Parties in the socialist camp should:
1. adhere to the Marxist-Leninist line and pursue correct Marxist-Leninist domestic and foreign policies;
2. consolidate the dictatorship of the proletariat and the worker-peasant alliance led by the proletariat and carry the socialist revolution forward to the end on the economic, political and ideological fronts;
3. promote the initiative and creativeness of the broad masses, carry out socialist construction in a planned way, develop production, improve the people’s livelihood and strengthen national defence;
4. strengthen the unity of the socialist camp on the basis of Marxism-Leninism, and support other socialist countries on the basis of proletarian internationalism;
5. oppose the imperialist policies of. aggression and war, and defend world peace;
6. oppose the anti-Communist, anti-popular and counter-revolutionary policies of the reactionaries of all countries; and
7. help the revolutionary struggles of the oppressed classes and nations of the world.
It adds that all Communist Parties in the socialist camp “owe it to their own people and to the international proletariat and working people to fulfil these demands”.
But instead, the leaders of the CPSU have abandoned these demands, disappointed the hopes of the fraternal Parties and pursued a revisionist and divisive line. This violates the interests not only of the international proletariat and working people but also of the CPSU, the Soviet state and the Soviet people themselves.
It is none other than the leaders of the CPSU headed by Khrushchov who are anti-Soviet.
The leaders of the CPSU have completely negated Stalin and painted the first dictatorship of the proletariat and socialist system as dark and dreadful. What is this if not anti-Soviet?
The leaders of the CPSU have proclaimed the abolition of the dictatorship of the proletariat, altered the proletarian character of the CPSU and opened the floodgates for capitalist forces in the Soviet Union. What is this if not anti-Soviet?
The leaders of the CPSU seek U.S.-Soviet co-operation and tirelessly fawn upon U.S. imperialism, and have thus disgraced the great Soviet Union. What is this if not anti-Soviet?
The leaders of the CPSU pursue the policy of great-power chauvinism and treat fraternal socialist countries as dependencies and have thus damaged the prestige of the Soviet state. What is this if not anti-Soviet?
The leaders of the CPSU obstruct and oppose the revolutionary struggles of other peoples and act as apologists for imperialism and neo-colonialism, and have thus tarnished the glorious internationalist tradition of Lenin’s Party. What is this if not anti-Soviet?
In short, the actions of the leaders of the CPSU have brought deep shame upon the great Soviet Union and the CPSU and seriously damaged the fundamental interests of the Soviet people. They are anti-Soviet actions through and through.
Naturally, in these circumstances, the Chinese Communist Party and other Marxist-Leninist parties and Marxist-Leninists are bound to subject the revisionist and divisive line of the leaders of the CPSU to serious criticism for the purpose of defending the purity of Marxism-Leninism and the unity of the international communist movement and upholding the principle of proletarian internationalism. We oppose only the revisionist and divisive errors of the leaders of the CPSU. And we do so for the sake of defending the CPSU founded by Lenin and safeguarding the fundamental interests of the Soviet Union, the first socialist country, and of the Soviet people. How can this be described as anti-Soviet?
Whether one defends or opposes the Soviet Union depends on whether or not one truly defends the line of Marxism-Leninism and the principle of proletarian internationalism and whether or not one truly defends the fundamental interests of the Soviet Party, the Soviet state and the Soviet people. To subject the leaders of the CPSU to serious criticism for their revisionism and splittism is to defend the Soviet Union. On the other hand, to pursue a revisionist and divisive line, as the leaders of the CPSU are doing, is actually to oppose the Soviet Union; and to copy this wrong line or submit to it is not genuinely to defend the Soviet Union but to help the leaders of the CPSU damage the fundamental interests of the Soviet people.
Here we may recall Lenin’s attitude to the leaders of the German Social-Democratic Party in the early years of the 20th century. The German Social-Democratic Party was then the biggest and most influential party in the Second International. But as soon as Lenin discovered opportunism among its leaders, he made it clear to the Russian Social-Democrats that they should not take “the least creditable features of German Social-Democracy as a model worthy of imitation”. (“The International Socialist Congress in Stuttgart”, Selected Works, New York, Vol. 4, p. 315.) He further stated:
We must criticise the mistakes of the German leaders fearlessly and openly if we wish to be true to the spirit of Marx and help the Russian socialists to be equal to the present-day tasks of the workers’ movement. (“Preface to the Pamphlet by Voinov (A. V. Lunacharsky) on the Attitude of the Party Towards the Trade Unions”, Collected Works, FLPH, Moscow, 1962, Vol. 13, p. 165.)
In the spirit of Lenin’s behest, we would advise the leaders of the CPSU: If you do not correct your revisionist errors, we will continue to criticize you “fearlessly and openly” in the interests of the CPSU, the Soviet state and the Soviet people, and in the interests of the socialist camp and the international communist movement and for the sake of their unity.
The leaders of the CPSU ascribe our criticisms and our opposition to their revisionist and divisive line to a desire to “seize the leadership”.
First, we would like to ask the leaders of the CPSU: You say we want to seize the leadership. From whom? Who now holds the leadership? In the international communist movement, is there such a thing as a leadership which lords it over all fraternal Parties? And is this leadership in your hands?
Apparently, the leaders of the CPSU consider themselves the natural leaders who can lord it over all fraternal Parties. According to their logic, their programme, resolutions and statements are all infallible laws. Every remark and every word of Khrushchov’s are imperial edicts, however wrong or absurd they may be. All fraternal Parties must submissively hear and obey and are absolutely forbidden to criticize or oppose them. This is outright tyranny. It is the ideology of feudal autocrats, pure and simple.
However, we must tell the leaders of the CPSU that the international communist movement is not some feudal clique. Whether large or small, whether new or old, and whether in or out of power, all fraternal Parties are independent and equal. No meeting of fraternal Parties and no agreement unanimously adopted by them has ever stipulated that there are superior and subordinate Parties, one Party which leads and other Parties which are led, a Party which is a father and Parties which are sons, or that the leaders of the CPSU are the supreme rulers over other fraternal Parties.
The history of the international proletarian revolutionary movement shows that, owing to the uneven development of revolution, at a particular historical stage the proletariat and its party in one country or another marched in the van of the movement.
Marx and Engels pointed out that the trade union movement in Britain and the political struggle of the French working class were successively in the van of the international proletarian movement. After the defeat of the Paris Commune, Engels said that “the German workers have for the moment been placed in the vanguard of the proletarian struggle”. He went on to say:
How long events will allow them to occupy this post of honour cannot be foretold.... the main point, however, is to safeguard the true international spirit, which allows no patriotic chauvinism to arise, and which joyfully welcomes each new advance of the proletarian movement, no matter from which nation it comes. (“Prefatory Note to The Peasant War in Germany”, Selected Works of Marx and Engels, FLPH. Moscow, Vol. 1, pp. 653-54.)
At the beginning of the twentieth century, the Russian working class, standing at the forefront of the international proletarian movement, won victory in the proletarian revolution for the first time in history.
Lenin said in 1919:
Hegemony in the revolutionary proletarian International has passed for the time being — but not for long, it goes without saying — to the Russians, just as at various periods of the nineteenth century it was in the hands of the English, then of the French, then of the Germans. (“The Third International and Its Place in History”, Selected Works, FLPH, Moscow, Vol. 2 Part 2, p. 203.)
The “vanguard” referred to by Engels, or the “hegemony” referred to by Lenin, in no way means that any Party which is in the van of the international working-class movement can order other fraternal Parties about, or that other Parties must obey it. When the Social-Democratic Party of Germany was in the forefront of the movement, Engels said that “it has no right to speak in the name of the European proletariat and especially no right to say something false”. (“Engels to A. Bebel, March 18-28, 1875”, Selected Correspondence of Marx and Engels, FLPH, Moscow. p. 354.) When the Russian Bolshevik Party was in the van, Lenin said, “... while foreseeing every stage of development in other countries we must decree nothing from Moscow.” (“Report on the Party Program, Delivered at the Eighth Congress of the RCP (B)”, Selected Works, FLPH. Moscow. Vol. 2. Part 2, p. 159.)
Even the vanguard position referred to by Engels and Lenin does not remain unchanged for a long time but shifts according to changing conditions. This shift is decided not by the subjective wishes of any individual or party, but by the conditions shaped by history. If conditions change, other parties may come to the van of the movement. When a party which formerly held the position of vanguard takes the path of revisionism, it is bound to forfeit this position despite the fact that it has been the largest party and has exerted the greatest influence. The German Social-Democratic Party was a case in point.
At one period in the history of the international communist movement, the Communist International gave centralized leadership to the Communist Parties of the world. It played a great historic role in promoting the establishment and growth of Communist Parties in many countries. But when the Communist Parties matured and the situation of the international communist movement grew more complicated, centralized leadership on the part of the Communist International ceased to be either feasible or necessary. In 1943 the Presidium of the Executive Committee of the Communist International stated in a resolution proposing to dissolve the Comintern:
... to the extent that the internal as well as the international situation of individual countries became more complicated, the solution of the problems of the labour movement of each country through the medium of some international centre would meet with insuperable obstacles.
Events have shown that this resolution corresponded to reality and was correct.
In the present international communist movement, the question of who has the right to lead whom simply does not arise. Fraternal Parties should be independent and completely equal, and at the same time they should be united. On questions of common concern they should reach unanimity of views through consultation, and they should concert their actions in the struggle for the common goal. These principles guiding relations among fraternal Parties are clearly stipulated in the Declaration of 1957, and the Statement of 1960.
It is a flagrant violation of these principles, as laid down in the Declaration and the Statement, for the leaders of the CPSU to consider themselves the leaders of the international communist movement and to treat all fraternal Parties as their subordinates.
Because of their different historical backgrounds, the fraternal Parties naturally find themselves in different situations. Those Parties which have won victory in their revolutions differ from those which have not yet done so, and those which won victory earlier differ from those which did so later.
But these differences only mean that the victorious Parties, and in particular the Parties which won victory earlier, have to bear a greater internationalist responsibility in supporting other fraternal Parties, and they have absolutely no right to dominate other fraternal Parties.
The Communist Party of the Soviet Union was built by Lenin and Stalin. It was the first Party to win the victory of the proletarian revolution, realize the dictatorship of the proletariat and engage in socialist construction. It was only logical that the CPSU should carry forward the revolutionary tradition of Lenin and Stalin, shoulder greater responsibility in supporting other fraternal Parties and countries and stand in the van of the international communist movement.
Taking these historical circumstances into account, the Chinese Communist Party expressed the sincere hope that the Communist Party of the Soviet Union would shoulder this glorious historic mission. At the 1957 Moscow Meeting of the fraternal Parties, our delegation emphasized that the socialist camp should have the Soviet Union at its head. The reason was that, although they had committed some mistakes, the leaders of the CPSU did finally accept the Moscow Declaration which was unanimously adopted by the fraternal Parties. Our proposal that the socialist camp should have the Soviet Union at its head was written into the Declaration.
We hold that the existence of the position of head does not contradict the principle of equality among fraternal Parties. It does not mean that the CPSU has any right to control other Parties; what it means is that the CPSU carries greater responsibility and duties on its shoulders.
However, the leaders of the CPSU have not been satisfied with this position of “head”. Khrushchov complained of it on many occasions. He said, “What does ‘at the head’ give us materially? It gives us neither milk nor butter, neither potatoes nor vegetables nor flats. Perhaps it gives us something morally? Nothing at all!” Later he said, ‘What is the use of at the head’ for us? To hell with it!”
The leaders of the CPSU say they have no desire for the position of “head”, but in practice they demand the privilege of lording it over all fraternal Parties. They do not require themselves to stand in the van of the international communist movement in pursuing the Marxist-Leninist line and fulfilling their proletarian internationalist duty, but they do require all fraternal Parties to obey their baton and follow them along the path of revisionism and splittism.
By embarking on the path of revisionism and splittism, the leaders of the CPSU automatically forfeited the position of “head” in the international communist movement. If the word “head” is now to be applied to them. it can only mean that they are at the head of the revisionists and splitters.
The question confronting all Communists and the entire international communist movement today is not who is the leader over whom, but whether one should uphold Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism or submit to the revisionism and splittism of the leaders of the CPSU. In spreading the slander that we want to seize the leadership, the leaders of the CPSU are in fact insisting that all fraternal Parties, including our own, must bow to their revisionist and divisive leadership.
In their attacks on the Chinese Communist Party since 1960, the leaders of the CPSU have most frequently resorted to the charge that we “frustrate the will of the majority” and “violate international discipline”. Let us review our debate with them on this question.
At the Bucharest meeting in June 1960 the leaders of the CPSU made a surprise assault on the Chinese Communist Party by distributing their Letter of Information attacking it and tried to coerce it into submission by lining up a majority. Their attempt did not succeed. But after the meeting they advanced the argument that the minority must submit to the majority in relations among fraternal Parties, and demanded that the CPC should respect the “views and will unanimously expressed” at the Bucharest meeting on the pretext that the delegates of scores of Parties had opposed the views of the CPC.
This erroneous argument was refuted by the Central Committee of the CPC in its Letter of Reply, dated September 10, 1960, to the Letter of Information of the Central Committee of the CPSU. It pointed out:
... where the fundamental principles of Marxism-Leninism are concerned, the problem of exactly who is right and who is wrong cannot in every case be judged by who has the majority, After all, truth is truth. Error cannot be turned into truth because of a temporary majority, nor will truth be turned into error because of a temporary minority.
Yet in its letter of November 5, 1960, the Central Committee of the CPSU repeated the fallacy about the minority’s submitting to the majority in the international communist movement. Quoting a passage from Lenin’s article “The Duma ‘Seven’”, it accused the CPC, saying that “he who does not wish to respect the opinion of the majority of the fraternal Parties is in essence coming out against the unity and solidarity of the international communist movement”.
At the Moscow Meeting of the fraternal Parties in 1960, the delegation of the CPC once more refuted this fallacy of the leaders of the CPSU. It declared that it is totally wrong to apply the principle of the minority’s submitting to the majority to the relations among fraternal Parties in actual present-day conditions in which centralized leadership such as that of the Comintern neither exists nor is desirable. Within a Party the principle that the minority should submit to the majority and the lower Party organization to the higher one should be observed. But it cannot be applied to relations among fraternal Parties. In their mutual relations, each fraternal Party maintains its independence and at the same time unites with all the others. Here, the relationship in which the minority should submit to the majority does not exist, and still less so the relationship in which a lower Party organization should submit to a higher one. The only way to deal with problems of common concern to fraternal Parties is to hold discussions and reach unanimous agreement in accordance with the principle of consultation.
The delegation of the CPC pointed out that by advancing the principle that the minority should submit to the majority in its letter, the Central Committee of the CPSU had obviously repudiated the principle of reaching unanimity through consultation. Our delegation asked, “On what supra-Party constitution does the Central Committee of the CPSU base itself in advancing such an organizational principle? When and where did the Communist and Workers’ Parties of all countries ever adopt such a supra-Party constitution?’
The delegation of the CPC then proceeded to expose the ruse of the Central Committee of the CPSU in deliberately omitting the word “Russian” from its citation of a passage dealing with the situation within the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party from Lenin’s article “The Duma ‘Seven’ ”, in order to extend the principle of the minority’s submitting to the majority, which is valid within a Party, to the relations among fraternal Parties.
The delegation of the CPC further stated:
... even within a Party, where the principle of the minority’s submitting to the majority must be observed organizationally, it cannot be said that on questions of ideological understanding truth can always be told from error on the basis of which is the majority and which the minority opinion. It was in this very article, “The Duma ‘Seven’”, that Lenin severely denounced the despicable action of the seven liquidationists in the Party fraction in the Duma who took advantage of a majority of one to suppress the Marxists who were in the minority. Lenin pointed out that although the seven liquidationists constituted the majority, they could not possibly represent the united will, united resolutions, united tactics of the majority of the advanced and conscious Russian workers who were organized in a Marxist way, and that therefore all shouts about unity were sheer hypocrisy. “The non-Party seven want to eat up the six Marxists and demand that this be called ‘unity’.” (Collected Works, 4th Russian ed., Vol. 19, p. 407.) He continued that it was precisely these six Marxists in the Party fraction in the Duma who were acting in accordance with the will of the majority of the proletariat, and that unity could be preserved only if those seven delegates “renounce their policy of suppression”. (Ibid., p. 425.)
The delegation of the CPC continued that Lenin’s words show:
... that even within a Party group the majority is not always correct, that on the contrary sometimes the majority have to “renounce the policy of suppression” if unity is to be preserved, and this is particularly the case where relations among fraternal Parties are concerned. The comrades of the Central Committee of the CPSU rashly quoted a passage from Lenin without having fully grasped its meaning. Moreover, they purposely deleted an important word. Even so, they failed in their aim!
We have quoted at length from a speech of the delegation of the CPC at the 1960 Moscow Meeting in order to show that the absurd charge of the leaders of the CPSU that we “frustrate the will of the majority” was completely refuted by us some time ago. It is precisely because the Chinese Communist Party and other fraternal Marxist-Leninist parties persistently opposed this fallacy that the principle of achieving unanimity through consultation among the fraternal Parties was written into the Statement of 1960.
Yet even now the leaders of the CPSU keep on clamouring that “the minority should submit to the majority”. This can only mean that they wish to deny the independent and equal status of all fraternal Parties and to abolish the principle of achieving unanimity through consultation. They are trying to force some fraternal Parties to submit to their will on the pretext of a “majority”, and to use the sham preponderance thus obtained to attack fraternal Marxist-Leninist parties. Their very actions are sectarian and divisive and violate the Declaration and the Statement.
Today, if one speaks of an international discipline binding on all Communist Parties, it can only mean observance of the principles guiding relations among fraternal Parties as laid down in the Declaration and the Statement. We have cited a great many facts to prove that these principles have been violated by the leaders of the CPSU themselves.
If the CPSU leaders insist on marking off the “majority” from the “minority”, then we would like to tell them quite frankly that we do not recognize their majority. The majority you bank on is a false one. The genuine majority is not on your side. Is it true that the members of fraternal Parties which uphold Marxism-Leninism are a minority in the international communist movement? You and your followers are profoundly alienated from the masses, so how can the great mass of Party members and people who disapprove of your wrong line be counted as part of your majority?
The fundamental question is: Who stands with the broad masses of the people? Who represents their basic interests? And who reflects their revolutionary will?
In 1916 Lenin said of the situation in the German Social-Democratic Party:
Liebknecht and Rühle are only 2 against 108. But these two represent millions of people, the exploited masses, the vast majority of the population, the future of mankind, the revolution which is growing and maturing with each day. The 108 represent only the grovelling spirit of a small handful of bourgeois lackeys among the proletariat. (Lenin, “An Open Letter to Boris Souvarine”, Collected Works, 4th Russian ed., Vol. 23, pp. 190-91.)
Today, more than ninety per cent of the world’s population desire revolution, including those who are not yet but will eventually become politically conscious. The real majority are the revolutionary Marxist-Leninist parties and Marxist-Leninists who represent the fundamental interests of the people, and not the handful of revisionists who have betrayed these interests.
In its Open Letter, the leadership of the CPSU makes the slanderous charge that “the CPC leadership organizes and supports various anti-party groups of defectors, which oppose the Communist Parties of the United States, Brazil, Italy, Belgium, Australia and India”.
What are the facts?
The fact is, the splits that have occurred in certain Communist Parties in recent years have largely been due to the forcible application by the leaders of the CPSU of their revisionist and divisive line.
The leaders of certain Communist Parties have led the revolutionary movement of their own countries astray and brought serious losses to the revolutionary cause either because they accepted the revisionist line imposed on them by the leaders of the CPSU or because their own revisionist line was encouraged by the leaders of the CPSU. By following the leaders of the CPSU and banging the drum for them in the struggle between the two lines in the international communist movement, they adversely affect the unity of the movement. Inevitably this arouses widespread dissatisfaction inside their own Parties and resistance and opposition from the Marxist-Leninists in them.
Aping the leaders of the CPSU, their followers practice a divisive policy inside their own Parties. Violating the principle of democratic centralism, they forbid normal inner-Party discussion of differences concerning the Party line and of major problems confronting the international communist movement. Moreover, they illegitimately ostracize, attack and even expel Communists who adhere to principle. As a result the struggle between the two lines within the Parties inevitably takes on a particularly acute form.
In essence, the struggle within these Communist Parties turns on whether to follow the Marxist-Leninist line or the revisionist line, and whether to make the Communist Party a genuine vanguard of the proletariat and a genuine revolutionary proletarian party or to convert it into a servant of the bourgeoisie and a variant of the Social-Democratic Party.
In the Open Letter, the leaders of the CPSU present a distorted picture of the struggles within the Communist Parties of the United States of America, Brazil, Italy, Belgium, Australia and India. They vilify in the most malicious language those Marxist-Leninists who have been attacked and ostracized by the revisionist groups in their own Parties.
Is it possible for the leaders of the CPSU to conceal or alter the truth about the struggles within these Communist Parties by calling white black and black white? No. They certainly cannot!
Take for example the inner-Party struggle in the Belgian Communist Party.
Differences have existed inside the Belgian Communist Party for a long time. The struggle within the Party has become increasingly acute as the original leading group has sunk deeper and deeper into the quagmire of revisionism and abandoned Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism.
During the counter-revolutionary rebellion in Hungary, the revisionist group in the Belgian Communist Party went so far as to issue a statement condemning the Soviet Union for helping the Hungarian working people to put down the rebellion.
This revisionist group opposed the Congolese people’s armed resistance to the bloody repression of the Belgian colonialists and supported the U.S. imperialists’ utilization of the United Nations to interfere in and suppress the movement for national independence in the Congo. It shamelessly prided itself on being the first to appeal to the United Nations, “desiring the rapid and integral application of the U.N. decisions”.
It praised the Tito clique’s revisionist programme, saying that it “contains ideas which enrich Marxism-Leninism”.
It denigrated the 1960 Statement, saying that its contents were all mixed up and that “in every twenty lines there is a phrase contradicting the general line of the Statement”.
During the great strike of the Belgian workers towards the end of 1960 and at the beginning of 1961, this revisionist group undermined the workers will to fight by denouncing their resistance to suppression by the police and gendarmes as ‘rash and irresponsible actions”.
In the face of these betrayals of the interests of the Belgian working class and the international proletariat, it is only natural that Belgian Marxist-Leninists headed by Comrade Jacques Grippa earnestly struggled against this revisionist group. They have exposed and repudiated the errors of the revisionist group inside the Party and have firmly resisted and opposed its revisionist line.
Thus it is clear that the struggle inside the Belgian Communist Party is a struggle between the Marxist-Leninist and the revisionist line.
How has the revisionist group in the Belgian Communist Party handled this inner-Party struggle? They have pursued a sectarian and divisive policy and used illegitimate means to attack and ostracize those Communists who have persevered in a principled Marxist-Leninist stand. At the 14th Congress of the Belgian Communist Party they refused to allow Jacques Grippa and other comrades to speak and, disregarding the widespread opposition of the membership, illegitimately declared them expelled from the Party.
It is in these circumstances that Belgian Marxist-Leninists headed by Comrade Jacques Grippa, upholding the revolutionary line, have firmly combated the revisionist and divisive line pursued by the original leading group and fought to rebuild the Belgian Communist Party. Are not their actions absolutely correct and above reproach?
In openly supporting the revisionist group in the Belgian Party and encouraging it to attack and ostracize Belgian Marxist-Leninists, the leaders of the CPSU have simply exposed themselves as creators of splits in fraternal Parties.
As for the Indian Communist Party, its situation is even graver.
On the basis of a wealth of facts, we pointed out in “A Mirror for Revisionists”, published by the Editorial Department of the People’s Daily on March 9, 1963, that the renegade clique headed by Dange had betrayed Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism, betrayed the revolutionary cause of the Indian proletariat and people and embarked on the road of national chauvinism and class capitulationism. This clique has usurped the leadership of the Indian Communist Party and, conforming to the will of the big Indian capitalists and landlords, has been transforming the Party into a lackey of the Nehru government which represents their interests.
What has happened to the Indian Communist Party since then?
Now everybody can see that the Dange clique is still travelling on the road of betrayal. It is still advocating class collaboration and the realization of socialism in India through the Nehru government. It actively supported the Nehru government’s huge budget providing for arms expansion and war preparation, and its measures for fleecing the people. In August 1963 it sabotaged the great strike of one million people in Bombay against the Nehru government’s ruthless taxation policy. It tried to obstruct the holding of a mass rally in Calcutta demanding the release of the imprisoned Communists, in which one hundred thousand people participated. It is continuing its frenzied anti-China activities and supporting the Nehru government’s expansionist policy. It is following the Nehru government’s policy of hiring itself out to U.S. imperialism.
As their renegade features are revealed, Dange and company meet increasing opposition and resistance from the broad rank and file of the Indian Communist Party. More and more Indian Communists have come to see clearly that Dange and company are the bane of the Indian Communist Party and the Indian nation. They are now struggling to rehabilitate the Party’s glorious and militant revolutionary tradition. They are the genuine representatives and the hope of the Indian proletariat and the Indian people.
The leaders of the CPSU clamour about the Chinese Communist Party’s support of “defectors” and “renegades”, but it is they themselves who support such out-and-out defectors and renegades as Dange and company.
The leaders of the CPSU denounce Communists in many countries who dare to combat revisionism and splittism as “defectors”, “renegades” and “anti-party elements”. But what have these Communists done? Nothing except to adhere to Marxism-Leninism and insist on a revolutionary party and a revolutionary line. Do the leaders of the CPSU really think that their abuse can cow these Marxist-Leninists, make them abandon their struggle for the correct and against the wrong line, and prevent them from carrying it through to the end? This wishful thinking can never be transformed into reality.
Everywhere and at all times, true revolutionaries, true proletarian revolutionary fighters, true Marxist-Leninists (militant materialists), are dauntless people; they are not afraid of the abuse of the reactionaries and revisionists. For they know it is not such seemingly formidable giants as the reactionaries and revisionists, but “nobodies” like themselves who represent the future. All great men were once nobodies. Provided that they possess the truth and enjoy the support of the masses, those who are seemingly insignificant at first are sure to be victorious in the end. This was true of Lenin and of the Third International. On the other hand, the celebrities and the big battalions inevitably dwindle, decline and putrefy when they lose possession of the truth and therefore lose the support of the masses. This was the case with Bernstein, Kautsky and the Second International. Everything tends to change into its opposite in particular conditions.
Communists are makers of revolution. If they refuse to make revolutions, they cease to be Marxist-Leninists and become revisionists and such-like. As Marxist-Leninists, Communists by their very nature should adhere to their revolutionary stand and oppose revisionism. Similarly, a Marxist-Leninist party should as a matter of course give firm support to revolutionaries and to Communists who oppose revisionism.
The Chinese Communist Party has never concealed its position. We support all revolutionary comrades who adhere to Marxism-Leninism. In the international communist movement, we have contacts with revisionists; why then can we not have contacts with Marxist-Leninists? The leaders of the CPSU describe our support for Marxist-Leninists in other countries as a divisive act. In our opinion, it is simply a proletarian internationalist obligation which it is our duty to discharge.
Fearing no difficulty or tyranny, upholding truth and daring to struggle, Marxist-Leninists in all countries have demonstrated the great revolutionary spirit of communist fighters. Among such heroic fighters are the Belgian Communists represented by Jacques Grippa and other comrades, the Brazilian Communists represented by Joâo Amazonas, Mauricio Grabois and other comrades, the Australian Communists represented by E. F. Hill and other comrades, the Ceylonese Communists represented by Premalal Kumarasiri, Nagalingam Sanmugathasan and other comrades, and the many Marxist-Leninists both inside and outside the Indian, Italian, French, U.S. and other Communist Parties. They have made important contributions to the common world proletarian cause by upholding the revolutionary theory of Marxism-Leninism, by working persistently to build revolutionary vanguard parties of the proletariat armed with Marxist-Leninist principles, and by persevering in the revolutionary line that conforms with the fundamental interests of the proletariat and other working people of their own countries. They deserve the respect, sympathy and support of all people fighting for the victory of communism throughout the world.
In short, whatever the country or place, where one finds oppression, there one finds resistance; where one finds revisionists, there one finds Marxist-Leninists fighting them, and where one finds expulsion of Marxist-Leninists from the Party and other divisive measures, there outstanding Marxist-Leninists and strong revolutionary Parties inevitably emerge. Changes contrary to the expectations of the modern revisionists are taking place. The revisionists are producing their own opposites and will eventually be buried by them. This is an inexorable law.
In the last analysis, the present great debate in the international communist movement centres on whether to adhere to Marxism-Leninism or to revisionism, whether to adhere to proletarian internationalism or to great-power chauvinism and whether to desire unity or a split. This dispute over fundamental principles began long ago, following the 20th Congress of the CPSU. It went on in private talks between fraternal Parties for a considerable time until it came into the open a little more than two years ago.
As everybody knows, the leaders of the CPSU first provoked and insisted on the open polemics in the international communist movement.
At their 22nd Congress in October 1961, they made public attacks on the Albanian Party of Labour. In his address at that Congress, Comrade Chou En-lai, the head of the Chinese Communist Party delegation, took exception to this action by the leaders of the CPSU, pointing out that it could not be regarded as representing a serious Marxist-Leninist attitude. What was the answer of the Soviet Party leaders? They declared that they were “absolutely correct” and were taking “the only correct and genuinely Marxist-Leninist position of principle” in starting the open polemics.
Then, in January 1962, the Viet Nam Workers Party suggested that “mutual attacks on the radio and in the press should be stopped by the Parties”. This suggestion was supported by the Chinese Communist Party, the Albanian Party of Labour and other fraternal Parties. But in effect the leaders of the CPSU refused to make a definite commitment to halt public polemics. Far from stopping their open attacks on the Albanian Party of Labour, they proceeded to engineer open attacks on the Chinese Communist Party too at the successive congresses of five fraternal Parties in Europe in late 1962 and early 1963, and so launched another round of open polemics on an even wider scale. This gave us no choice but to make public replies to the attackers.
Although we had not yet answered all the attacks by fraternal Parties, in its reply to the Central Committee of the CPSU in March 1963 the Central Committee of our Party stated that in order to create a favourable atmosphere for the scheduled talks between the Chinese and Soviet Parties we would temporarily suspend public replies in the press from March 9, without prejudice to our rights. But on the eve of the talks the leaders of the CPSU took the further step of openly attacking the Chinese Communist Party by name in their Party statements and resolutions.
On July 14, in the midst of the talks between the Chinese and Soviet Party delegations in Moscow, the Central Committee of the CPSU published its Open Letter to Party organizations and all Communists in the Soviet Union, in which it distorted the facts, confused right and wrong, and blatantly and demagogically attacked and abused the Chinese Communist Party and Comrade Mao Tse-tung. Thus, the leaders of the CPSU took yet a further step and provoked open polemics on a still larger scale.
From July 15, 1963 onward, the leaders of the CPSU slandered and attacked China as their Enemy No. 1, using all the media at their disposal, such as government statements, speeches by leaders, meetings and articles, and setting in motion all their propaganda machinery, from the central and local press to the radio and television stations. Between July 15 and October 31 their twenty-six central newspapers and journals alone published 1,119 articles by editorial boards, editorials, commentaries, signed articles, readers’ letters and cartoons, in which the Chinese Communist Party and its leaders, Mao Tse-tung, Liu Shao-chi, Chou En-lai and other comrades, were assailed by name. Incomplete figures based on the study of the 15 organs of the Union Republics showed that at least 728 similar anti-Chinese articles and items appeared in the Soviet local press in the same period.
We have published the most important anti-Chinese material including the Open Letter of the Central Committee of the CPSU, which we printed in full twice and broadcast to the whole world in more than a dozen foreign languages in order to acquaint those interested in this open debate with the views of the leaders of the CPSU. We have not printed every one of the Soviet articles attacking China simply because they are so numerous and in most cases repeat each other, and because our press has limited space. Our publishing houses have collected all these articles and will print them in book form.
The Soviet side has already put out nearly two thousand anti-Chinese articles and other items. In accordance with the principle of equality among all fraternal Parties, the Chinese side has the right to publish a commensurate number of replies.
As the Open Letter of the Central Committee of the CPSU touches upon many questions involving a series of fundamental theoretical issues in Marxism-Leninism as well as many major events of the past seven or eight years in the international communist movement, the Editorial Departments of our People’s Daily and Red Flag, after careful study, started the series of comments that began on September 6, 1963. Up to now, we have published only seven comments on this Open Letter, including the present one.
We have not yet concluded our comments. As for the vast number of anti-Chinese articles published by the central or local press of the Soviet Union, we have not even begun to reply to them.
In his answers to newspapermen on October 25, 1963, Khrushchov called for a cessation of the public debate. Subsequently, however, the Soviet press continued to publish articles attacking China.
Recently, the leaders of the CPSU again proposed a halt to the public debate which they said had “done enormous harm to the communist movement”. Yet in the past they said that public polemics were “in the interests of the whole world communist movement” and “the only correct and genuinely Marxist-Leninist position of principle”. We would like to ask the leaders of the CPSU: What sort of games are you playing, saying one thing at one time and another thing at another?
We would also like to ask the leaders of the CPSU: Is it in accord with the principle of equality among fraternal Parties for you to ask us to be silent after publishing less than ten articles in reply to your two thousand articles and other items attacking China, and when we have not yet even completed our reply to your Open Letter? Is it in accord with the principles of democratic discussion for you to become impatient and intolerant and to refuse to listen when we have said only a little while you have talked so much and for so long?
Again, we would like to ask the leaders of the CPSU: Was it not an outright threat and intimidation when you brazenly declared in the Soviet government statement of September 21, 1963 that if the Chinese continued the polemics, “they must clearly realize that the most resolute rebuff from the CPSU and the Soviet people awaits them on this road”? Do you really believe that other people are bound docilely to obey your orders and tremble at your roar? To be frank, ever since September 21 you have been eagerly waiting to see what “the most resolute rebuff” would be.
Comrades and friends! You are mistaken, completely mistaken.
Now that the public debate is on, it must proceed according to rule. If you think you have said enough, you should allow the other side ample chance to reply. If you think you still have a lot to say, please say it all. But when you do so, let the other side have his full say as well. In a word, there should be equal rights. Have not you, too, said that fraternal Parties are equal? Why then do you insist that you may start public polemics whenever you want to attack fraternal Parties and at the same time deprive the Parties so attacked of their right to make public replies whenever you choose to stop the polemics?
The leaders of the CPSU unscrupulously provoked, extended and insisted on the open polemics, but now they have begun to clamour for their cessation. What is behind all this?
Apparently, things have not developed according to the expectations of the launchers of these polemics. The public debate, which the leaders of the CPSU at first thought would be to their advantage, is developing in a way contrary to their wishes. Truth is not on the side of the leaders of the CPSU, and therefore in their attacks on others they can only depend on lies, slanders, distortion of the facts and confusion of right and wrong. When argument develops and it becomes necessary to produce facts and reason things out, they find the ground slipping from under their feet and take fright.
Lenin once said that for revisionists “there is nothing more disagreeable, undesirable unacceptable than the elucidation of the prevailing theoretical, programmatic, tactical and organizational differences”. (“Once More About the International Socialist Bureau and the Liquidators”, Collected Works, 4th Russian ed., Moscow, Vol. 20, p. 37.)
This is precisely the situation in which the leaders of the CPSU now find themselves.
The stand of the Chinese Communist Party on public polemics is known to all. From the very beginning, we have held that differences among fraternal Parties should be resolved through private consultations. The public polemics were neither provoked nor desired by us.
However, since the public debate is already on and since the leaders of the CPSU have said that to conduct it is to “act in Lenin’s manner”, it must be conducted on the basis of democratic discussion by adducing facts and by reasoning until everything is thrashed out.
More important still, since the leaders of the CPSU have openly betrayed Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism and torn up the Declaration and the Statement, they cannot expect us to refrain from defending Marxism-Leninism, proletarian internationalism and the revolutionary principles of the Declaration and the Statement. Since the debate concerns major issues of principle in the international communist movement, they must be thoroughly thrashed out. This, too, represents a serious Marxist-Leninist attitude.
The essence of the matter is that the existing differences in the international communist movement are between Marxism-Leninism and revisionism and between proletarian internationalism and great-power chauvinism. These major differences of principle cannot be solved in a fundamental way by a cessation of the public debate. On the contrary, only through public debate, setting forth the facts and reasoning things out will it be possible to clarify matters, distinguish right from wrong and safeguard and strengthen the unity of the international communist movement on the basis of Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism.
Marxism-Leninism is a science, and science fears no debate. Anything which fears debate is no science. The present great debate in the international communist movement is impelling Communists, revolutionists and revolutionary people in ail countries to use their brains and ponder over problems concerning the revolution in their own countries and the world revolution in accordance with the fundamental theories of Marxism-Leninism. Through this great debate, people will be able to distinguish between right and wrong and between real and sham Marxism-Leninism. Through this great debate, all the revolutionary forces in the world will be mobilized, and all Marxist-Leninists will be tempered ideologically and politically and will be able to integrate Marxism-Leninism with concrete practice in their own countries in a more mature way. Thus, Marxism-Leninism will undoubtedly be further enriched, developed and raised to new heights.
The revisionism and great-power chauvinism of the leaders of the CPSU are an unprecedented menace to the unity of the socialist camp and the international communist movement. By taking a revisionist and great-power chauvinist position, the leaders of the CPSU are standing for a split. So long as they maintain such a position, they are in fact working for sham unity and a real split no matter how volubly they may talk of “unity” and abuse others as “splitters” and “sectarians”.
The Chinese Communist Party, other Marxist-Leninist parties and all Marxist-Leninists persevere in Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism. This position is the only correct one for defending and strengthening the genuine unity of the socialist camp and the international communist movement.
Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism constitute the basis of that unity. Only on this basis can the unity of fraternal Parties and countries be built. Such unity will be out of the question if one departs from this basis. To fight for Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism is to work for the unity of the international communist movement. Persevering in principle and upholding unity are inextricably bound together.
If the leaders of the CPSU genuinely want unity and are not just pretending, they should loyally abide by the fundamental theories of Marxism-Leninism and by the Marxist-Leninist teachings concerning classes and class struggle, the state and revolution, and especially proletarian revolution and the dictatorship of the proletariat. It is absolutely impermissible for them to substitute class collaboration or class capitulation for class struggle, and social reformism or social pacifism for proletarian revolution, or abolish the dictatorship of the proletariat no matter under what pretext.
If the leaders of the CPSU genuinely want unity and are not just pretending, they should strictly abide by the revolutionary principles of the 1957 Declaration and the 1960 Statement. It is absolutely impermissible for them to substitute their own Party programme for the common programme which was unanimously agreed upon by the fraternal Parties.
If the leaders of the CPSU genuinely want unity and are not just pretending, they should draw a sharp line of demarcation between enemies and comrades and should unite with all socialist countries, all fraternal Marxist-Leninist parties, the proletariat of the whole world, all oppressed people and nations and all peace-loving countries and people in order to oppose U.S. imperialism, the arch-enemy of the people of the world, and its lackeys. It is absolutely impermissible for them to treat enemies as friends and friends as enemies, and to ally themselves with the U.S. imperialists, the reactionaries of various countries and the renegade Tito clique against fraternal countries and Parties and all revolutionary people in the vain pursuit of world domination through U.S.-Soviet collaboration.
If the leaders of the CPSU genuinely want unity and are not just pretending, they should be faithful to proletarian internationalism and strictly abide by the principles guiding relations among fraternal countries and Parties, as laid down in the Declaration and the Statement. It is absolutely impermissible for them to replace these principles with policies of great-power chauvinism and national egoism. In other words, they should
observe the principle of solidarity and never line up a number of fraternal Parties to attack other fraternal Parties and engage in sectarian and divisive activities;
adhere to the principle of mutual support and mutual assistance and never try to control others in the name of assistance or, on the pretext of the “international division of labour”, impair the sovereignty and interests of fraternal countries and oppose their building socialism through self-reliance;
observe the principle of independence and equality and never place themselves above other fraternal Parties or impose their own Party’s programme, line and resolutions on others; never interfere in the internal affairs of fraternal Parties and carry out subversive activities under the pretext of “combating the personality cult”; and never treat fraternal Parties as their property and fraternal countries as their dependencies;
follow the principle of reaching unanimity through consultation and never force through their own Party’s wrong line in the name of the so-called majority or use the Congresses of their own Party or of other Parties and such forms as resolutions, statements and leaders’ speeches for public and explicit attacks on other fraternal Parties, and certainly never extend ideological differences to state relations.
In short, if the leaders of the CPSU genuinely desire the unity of the socialist camp and the international communist movement, they must make a clean break with their line of revisionism, great-power chauvinism and splittism. The unity of the socialist camp and the international communist movement can be safeguarded and strengthened only by remaining loyal to Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism and by opposing modern revisionism and modern dogmatism, great-power chauvinism and other forms of bourgeois nationalism, and sectarianism and splittism, and by doing so not merely in words but in deeds. This is the sole way to defend and strengthen unity.
Taken as a whole, the present world situation is most favourable. The international communist movement has already gained brilliant victories, bringing about a fundamental change in the international balance of class forces. At present the international communist movement is being assailed by an adverse current of revisionism and splittism; this phenomenon is not inconsistent with the law of historical development. Even though it creates temporary difficulties for the international communist movement and some fraternal Parties, it is a good thing that the revisionists have revealed their true features and that a struggle between Marxism-Leninism and revisionism has ensued.
Without any doubt, Marxism-Leninism will continue to demonstrate its youthful vitality and will sweep the whole world; the international communist movement will grow stronger and more united on the basis of Marxism-Leninism; and the cause of the international proletariat and the world people’s revolution will win still more brilliant victories. Modern revisionism will undoubtedly go bankrupt.
We would like to advise the leaders of the CPSU to think matters over calmly: what will your clinging to revisionism and splittism lead to? Once again, we would like to make a sincere appeal to the leaders of the CPSU: We hope you will be able to return to Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism, to the revolutionary principles of the 1957 Declaration and the 1960 Statement and to the principles guiding relations among fraternal Parties and countries as laid down in these documents, so that the differences will be eliminated and the unity of the international communist movement and the socialist camp and unity between China and the Soviet Union will be strengthened on these principled bases.
Despite our serious differences with the leaders of the CPSU, we have full confidence in the vast membership of the CPSU and in the Soviet people, who grew up under the guidance of Lenin and Stalin. As always, the Communists and the people of China will unswervingly safeguard the unity between China and the Soviet Union, and consolidate and develop the deep-rooted friendship between our two peoples.
Communists of the world, unite on the basis of Marxism-Leninism!
[1.] “For the Unity and Solidarity of the International Communist Movement”, article by the editorial board, Pravda, Dec. 6, 1963.
[2.] Cf. Khrushchov’s interview with Gardner Cowles, Editor of the U.S. magazine Look, Apr. 20, 1962, report by Khrushchov to the Session of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, Dec. 12, 1962.
[3.] “Openings for Diplomacy: Cracks in the Blocs”, The Nation, Feb. 9, 1963.
[4.] “Moscow and Peking: How Wide the Split?”, Newsweek, Mar. 26, 1962.
[5.] “With Test-Ban Treaty — Has Khrushchev Changed His Ways?”, U.S. News and World Report, Sept. 30, 1963.
[6.] “Communist Unity Seen in U.S. as Thing of the Past”, the London Times, Jan. 17, 1962.
[7.] “The Periscope”, Newsweek, July 1, 1963.
[8.] “The International Situation and Our Tasks”, resolution adopted by the Reunification Congress of the Trotskyites’ so-called Fourth International in June 1963, Fourth International, No. 17 October-December 1963, p. 47.
[9.] “The New Stage of the Russian Revolution and the Crisis of Stalinism”, resolution adopted by a meeting of the National Committee of the Trotskyite Socialist Workers’ Party of the U.S.A. Apr. 13-15, 1956, The 20th Congress (C.P.S.U.) and World Trotskyism, New Park Publications Ltd., London, 1957, p. 36.
[10.] “The Repercussions of the 22nd Congress of the CPSU”, resolution adopted by the International Secretariat of the Trotskyites’ so-called Fourth International, Dec. 5, 1961, Fourth International, No. 14, winter issue, 1961-1962, p. 25.
[11.] Khrushchov’s speech at the banquet given in honour of the delegations of the fraternal Parties of the socialist countries on Feb. 4, 1960.
[12.] Khrushchov’s speech at the meeting of the delegates of twelve fraternal Parties at Bucharest, June 24, 1960
[13.] Ernest Burnelle’s interview with a correspondent of l’Humanite on the Congolese question, Le Drapeau Rouge (organ of the Belgian Communist Party), July 26, 1960.
[14.] “The Belgian Communist Party and the Congress of the League of Communists of Yugosiavia”, Le Drapeau Rouge, Apr. 22, 1958.
[15.] Speech by Jean Blume at the Federal Congress of Brussels on Dec. 3. 1961. cited by Jacques Grippa in “For the Marxist-Leninist Unity of the Party and for the Marxist-Leninist Unity of the International Communist Movement”, Le Drapeau Rouge, Feb. 22, 1962.
[16.] Jean Blume. “For a Complete and Quick Victory: Two Communist Proposals”, Le Drapeau Rouge, Dec. 29, 1960.
[17.] Khrushchov’s concluding speech at the 22nd Congress of the CPSU, Oct. 27, 1961, Documents of the 22nd Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, FLPH, Moscow, p. 334.
[18.] “The Banner of Our Epoch”, article by the editorial board, Pravda, Feb. 21, 1962.
[19.] “Toward New Victories of Communism”, article by the editorial board, Kommunist, No. 16, 1961.
[20.] See p. 77, note 2.
[21.] “The Historic Congress of the Leninist Party”, Pravda editorial, Nov. 4, 1961.
Document List | Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung