Marxist-Leninist Communist Party of Venezuela: The Ideological Struggle and the Reality of Venezuela

From the latest issue of Unity and Struggle, the journal of the ICMLPO

Modern society, that is the capitalist society in its imperialist stage, is developing in ways that confirm that, in general, the Marxist-Leninist method of analysis and interpretations have been correct both in theory and in practice. Historically in general and not only in particular cases, the revolutionary ideas have reached all strata of society.

On the one hand, even those who attack or reject Marxism have to read and analyze our classics. This reaches the point that, during the crises, Capital has become the most widely read book, and no faculty of economics or school of economic, political and social thought can avoid analyzing, distorting or trying to refute the postulates of Marxism.

On the other hand, the working class and its vanguard adopt the Marxist postulates as their own and spread them among the masses.  Marxism is a science and an ideology, because on the one hand it explains rationally the various phenomena with theories and concrete practice, and studies reality by presenting an accumulation of verifiable historical facts that support it. But furthermore, when it is grasped by the masses, it becomes a powerful tool of struggle for the proletariat, giving it a battering ram that develops its class instinct, advances towards the conquest of the future, arms it with the certainty that it actions are correct, with correct answers to many of its questions.

Indeed the Marxist method, due to its solid foundations, in spite of what some people say, does allow one to define the course of society and to identify the possible scenarios, with conclusions confirmed by facts. Social processes are, of course, lengthy, they are not always immediate, and must often be measured in decades, nor is their evolution perfectly linear.

It is to be noted that the transition from one mode of production to another, in the evolution to capitalism, first occurred in totally unknown ways, without a clear idea of where society was going. It was only inspired by vague dreams of a paradise or ideas of some reformer of the world, caudillo or martyr. The contributions of Marxism changed this by giving a clear and complete way to evaluate the way society evolves, to visualize the transition from one mode of production to another, and even to identify its fundamental laws and the people required to carry out such important transformations.

The struggle for the building of the new society is no longer seen as being based only on the spontaneous impulses of the oppressed, nor is it explained through metaphysics or mysticism, but on theoretical bases, on adequate forms of organization and struggle, on successful experiences, capable of guiding the peoples through the various necessary stages until mankind will arrive at a society without classes. There will certainly be advances and setbacks in the historical process. It will be necessary to discover and apply the laws of social movement in concrete actions that will support, in theory and in practice, the necessary revolutionary tasks.

In the current stage of the revolutionary struggle, the proletariat needs to regain strength and break the siege to which it has been subjected after the betrayal of revisionism. This constitutes a requirement in order to prepare the offensive.  It is therefore very important to develop the struggle against imperialism, and also against left and right deviations, to achieve unity in criteria, to correct the weaknesses and to consolidate a common tactic by applying the principles of criticism and self-criticism. This requires the rejection of what Raúl calls “ideological laziness”[1]. For this task, comrade Marco has left us an invaluable legacy that we must take advantage of, not only with his various contributions over time, but especially with his last two works, “Ráfagas y retazos de la historia del PCE (ML) y el FRAP” [“Pieces and Fragments of the History of the PCE (ML) and the FRAP”], of 2018[2] and “El ayer ayuda a situar el hoy” [“Yesterday Helps to Understand Today”, of 2019. These works present a vision of the experiences of the Marxist-Leninists, especially the latter on the development of the ICMLPO to what it has become today. They give us bases to make an important evaluation, and, why not?, to make an assessment to sketch out how to improve our work.

With his works, Raúl fulfilled a very important task that was noted with insistence. For this reason, aware of his role, he dedicated his last years, his great skills, experience and discipline to leave us very appropriate observations that can help us greatly to optimize the actions of every party and especially of the ICMLPO.

These contributions, as well as other lived, read and heard experiences allow us to understand the need to try to learn and improve our practice, to assimilate the essence of Marxism-Leninism and the experiences of the revolutionary movement in general. In many instances, the movement has debated some of the issues that concern us today, evidently in other circumstances and conditions.

While waging this necessary and permanent ideological struggle, we must go forward with some premises that can support the immediate action and make all the processes more agile. Based on a French revolutionary, Lenin said that we need among other things “boldness, boldness and more boldness”

The well-known fact of the sharpening of contradictions is an undeniable fact from all points of view. We must therefore hasten the pace of our march, improve organizationally both internally with the broad popular masses. Guided by the principles of the Communist International and of our classics, we believe it is important to support the forces that are fighting against imperialism, for national liberation, confirming the theses on the national and the colonial questions, as well as Dimitrov’s orientations on the United Front policy.

It is important, in this struggle, to unmask the Trotskyist ideas that isolate the proletariat, that separate it from the masses and thus from the struggles of a bourgeois-democratic, national-revolutionary and national liberation character in the dependent countries. The Trotskyist theories prevent the working class from becoming the vanguard and leader of the whole society, including other non-proletarian strata of society, and make it a self-contained sect. On the other hand, the theory of the three worlds, among other anti-Marxist pearls of wisdom, states the need to subordinate oneself to one imperialist faction in order to confront another; this is another deviation that we must confront.

Some of these ideas lead to the isolation and contribute to the defeat of the revolutionary popular movement. According to them, no agreement is possible, and the only solution is the tactic of entryism, a Trotskyist deviation that leads to boycotting and destroying the possibilities of building a People’s Front. The opportunist line of the Maoist theory of the three worlds, in the first place, takes as a basis the maneuvers and gambles with an imperialist force, and in second place, the force of the proletariat itself. For consistent Marxists, the proletariat must always be the central actor of the revolutionary action. This opportunist policy also attacks the unity of the proletariat and the Popular Front by opening the doors of the party to the bourgeoisie.

These situations are developing while all the contradictions are accelerating, linked to the general crisis of capitalism, to the new cyclic crisis and the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. These are great challenges, which are even greater for the revolutionaries and especially for us Marxist-Leninists. We must fight both in practice and in theory, first, against the imperialists, by exposing them as the common enemy of all mankind, against the social democrats, who play a wavering role and end up siding with capital, and against the fascists, who are trying to raise their heads in the midst of despair. We must also denounce revisionism and the Trotskyist tendencies that confuse and shackle the proletarian movement. We must denounce revisionism and reformism, partners of all the others tendencies. At the same time, we must integrate ourselves in the mighty popular torrent, which, at the beginning, is not led by us, but we must win the masses to support our positions. This is the way to continue advancing by gaining experience, organization and numbers.

The only way to carry out such a complex task is by applying the appropriate tactics, and the classics tell us that this is done by giving concrete answers to the concrete conditions. Stalin defines it very clearly: “Tactics are the determination of the line of conduct of the proletariat in the comparatively short period of the flow or ebb of the movement, of the rise or decline of the revolution, the fight to carry out this line by means of replacing old forms of struggle and organization by new ones, old slogans by new ones, by combining these forms, etc. “[3]

Elements of the Current Situation in Venezuela

Faced with the elements that characterize the current situation, our party considers it necessary to adjust our tactics and optimize the use of resources to overcome the strong impact produced by the junction of elements that are external to the population and the militant forces, and thus to prepare to meet the challenges of the immediate future.

In Venezuela, the people are clearly advancing in their process of resistance and struggle against imperialist aggression. This process has had a deep impact the ways of life, ideas and the form of grasping the struggle. It has reached the point of provoking debates in the organizations, many of which have disappeared or changed their position. It also had consequences within the revolutionary movement at the international level, with debates on the correct Marxist-Leninist tactics to adopt, and especially on the policy of critical support with demands to the Bolivarian process that we are applying. Other organizations, especially of the revisionist type, oppose it, and even, in the midst of their confusion, resort to armed attacks against the government while it is blockaded, threatened and attacked by the imperialist bloc of the United States-European Union and its lackeys.

It is thus unavoidable to address the ideological problem, such as to clarify the national and international tactics that must be applied in the present situation. This task is central and determining in the current political struggle.

Stalin should again be quoted on this question. When asked if it is possible to convert the dependent countries and colonies from being a reserve of the imperialist bourgeoisie into being a reserve of the revolutionary proletariat, into its ally, Stalin tells us: “Leninism replies to this question in the affirmative, i.e., it recognizes the existence of revolutionary capacities in the national liberation movement of the oppressed countries, and the possibility of using these for overthrowing the common enemy, for overthrowing imperialism.[4]

Concerning these situations and especially the armed confrontations that have occurred in recent days on the border with Colombia, the Political Bureau of our party has issued a statement on the situation in the region of Apure state: we maintain the assessment that we made for several years on the possible scenarios of political developments in Venezuela.

In this statement, we analyze the attack carried out by gangs of armed thugs against the command of the National Guard in Caracas, and the clashes between the Bolivarian Armed Forces of Venezuela (FANB) and groups that are presumed to belong to one of the factions into which the FARC-EP disintegrated. It is worth saying that these factions are engaged in confrontations and differences among themselves on many questions, especially on questions of arms.

It is clear that these armed confrontations, regardless of their causes and the reasons of their leaders, will be of great use for the campaign of aggression that the U.S.-E.U. imperialist bloc and its lackeys intends to carry out, especially to justify an action of greater violence.

We ask ourselves what are the class origin, the tactics and the objectives of the forces in conflict. This leads us to have serious doubts in relation to their action in the Apure area. It would be expected that the border would serve as a rearguard and as a respite for a force that is fighting on Colombian territory. It would thus be normal to avoid any confrontation in Venezuela, and even more, not to claim part of its territory, in a type of struggle of position, which includes blowing up buildings with explosives.

In our statement, we concluded that “We could make many conjectures, but the truth is that this is the first stage of an armed intervention, which is gaining strength due to recognition by the U.S. institutions that the blockade and sanctions against Venezuela, although they have directly affected the majority of the people, have not achieved the expected aim of removing President Maduro. They have, on the contrary, unified the people in developing the mechanisms of resistance and struggle, and the conscience of who is their enemy. This has led some U.S. senators and Luis Almagro (secretary general of the O.A.S.) to conclude that Guaidó requires direct help because “he cannot do it alone”. This would explain the current actions and lead one to suppose that we are on the verge of another violent intervention, to be developed with the combination of warlike and non-warlike actions.”[5]

After evaluating the information obtained from the region and the pronouncements of the parties, we propose the following assessment: “Faced with this situation of great danger and complexity, we call on the revolutionaries of the world, the democrats and the anti-imperialists to support the efforts of the people of Venezuela who are resisting and fighting against the imperialist aggression, by engaging in practices and contributions that will support an international policy based on the premises of Marxism-Leninism, on the decisions of the congresses of the Communist International, and on the correct policy of support for the processes of national liberation and anti-imperialism in dependent countries, calling for the rejection of any fratricidal war and to point the cannons against imperialism and the bourgeoisie, always in defense of the interests of the exploited and oppressed of both countries. “

Any military options would only activate the mechanisms of war, the preparations for which are underway, which gradually try to develop them until they result in a direct confrontation in broad areas of the national territory, if those who confront them cannot contain them.

Many theoreticians aim at explaining the particular characteristics of modern warfare and at describing its “new generation”. But wars have never started without preparations or actions of softening up, perhaps without the technology and means that exist today. But the resorting to threats, propaganda, infiltration, destruction of the enemy’s media and blockades are nothing new, are nothing to be surprised about. In the past, the present and the future these measures are part of the preparations for war action. It happened in the last wars of aggression in Syria, Libya and Iraq, and before, against Vietnam and Korea, against Revolutionary China and also against the USSR.

The war has not really arrived yet, but we are in the phase of preparations, of the actions of positioning of the contending forces, and of softening up by the national and international aggressor forces. Clearly the forces being attacked are also preparing. The border of Venezuela [with Colombia] has become a strategic site or perhaps a decoy.

The psychological, electronic, computer, economic warfare, each has its objective, but they do not constitute total war, but rather parts of it. Particularly today in Venezuela they are part of the preparations for the open war.

The military offensive that is being prepared by the U.S.-E.U. bloc aims to consolidate its control. However, in the case of Venezuela, the bloc has met a people who are willing to resist and fight, who have been doing so for years, and who have allies, such as the popular, revolutionary and anti-imperialist movement, as well as the true Marxist-Leninists of the world.

For the U.S. monopoly leadership, this can only end with the U.S.-E.U. imperialist bloc positioning itself as the sole dominant force in the whole of the Americas, after having displaced the China-Russia bloc and the various national tendencies from the spaces that they have conquered. The objective of the U.S. imperialist state is identical, regardless of which bourgeois tendency is in office, whether Trump or Biden, Republicans or Democrats. It is to regain absolute control of the region, based on the thesis of Manifest Destiny, the Monroe Doctrine and the use of brute force. This leads directly to a tendency towards fascistization in order to eliminate all resistance of the working class and the left, inside and outside their country, and even to crush other bourgeois factions that question its policies.

Until now, the China-Russia bloc has shown that it is willing to defend its investments and the strategic positioning it has achieved in the Americas, but without giving themselves over fully to this purpose, by using a different method. The anti-Yankee tendencies of a popular and left character have kept alive the determination of the peoples to resist and fight, which constitutes a very important ingredient making it possible for the fundamental contradictions to give way to the revolutionary struggle, if the Marxist-Leninist leadership is capable of understanding the phenomenon in order to advance, by identifying the enemy at each stage, as well as the auxiliary and the reserve forces that they can mobilize.

In the medium or long term, we will go from the stage of the threats that are becoming more violent every day, to the direct confrontation. The actions of the government and of other actors may accelerate or delay it, but inevitably the interests of the imperialist monopoly groups will try to control the immense natural resources of the region to be able to overcome the current economic crisis that affects them. They will not calmly allow their opponent to make use of these resources without opposing them. This is why the U.S.-E.U. bloc has been trying to retake the control of some governments through legalized aggression, military or palace coups d’état, or paramilitary violence. But the bloc was met with greater or lesser opposition from the peoples, and with an “unusual and extraordinary” resistance from the people of Venezuela and the Bolivarian government. This has led them to threats, robberies and a blockade, in preparation of what is called “politics by other means”, that is, open warfare: War between powers, war of resistance of a people facing aggression, civil war , irregular warfare or low intensity war that is prolonged in time between skirmishes and attacks.

The U.S.-E.U. imperialist bloc needs its so-called “back yard” as a source of raw materials, of cheap labor and a market. Likewise, it requires national industries in its own territory, to be able to go on the offensive and try to recover the space of world domination, in which it is harassed, economically by China, militarily by Russia, and politically-ideological by the anti-U.S. tendencies in Latin America and in the Caribbean, which are both strong and diverse and have a long and heroic history of struggle.

In this framework, the class struggle is sometimes underhanded and other times open. In any case, the project of the popular masses, represented in the program of the proletariat, gives it a strategic revolutionary profile, encourages the majority to struggle against the program of the exploiters, mainly of the bourgeoisie that limits its rights and tends towards fascism. Hundreds of variants and discourses move between these extremes, with veils and nuances that raise the banners of democracy, social justice and equality, trying to hide the answer: Democracy, justice, equality, for whom? Freedom, equality and solidarity for the oppressors and in particular for the owners of capital, in exchange for slavery, marginalization and abandonment for the proletariat? This is an open debate in all our countries and that is why the common position and unity of action take effect and open up immense opportunities for development.

The Latin American region has faced aggression from the successive administrations of the U.S. in various ways and different periods. At this moment, it is expressed in the fight to regain control, mainly in the confrontation with Venezuela, which is at such a high level that it necessarily radiates towards other countries with pronouncements in favor or against, even by governments and the vanguard, in all continents, before which neutrality is impossible. On the contrary it is time to unify forces and confront the main danger recognized by the peoples of the region.

The expressions of struggle between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, between the imperialists and the resistance forces in a dependent country lead us to have similar positions with those who are willing to fight against the common enemy. At the same time, we maintain our position of denunciation and action against the main danger and its allies. We fight first against imperialism, the bourgeoisie and all the exploiters. We understand the priorities of each scenario within the framework of a plan that aims strategically to seize political power, and tactically to accumulate forces, through a policy of critical support accompanied by demands. We repeat what Stalin said: “support must be given to such national movements as tend to weaken, to overthrow imperialism, and not to strengthen and preserve it.”[6]

“Socialism is only built with the worker-peasant alliance in power and the people in arms”.

Political Bureau of the PCMLV

Venezuela, March of 2021.

[1] Raúl Marco: “El ayer ayuda a situar el hoy”, Aurora Publishers, 17,  2019, p. 11.

[2] Raúl Marco: Ráfagas y retazos de la historia del PCE (ML) y el FRAP”, Aurora Publishers, 2018.

[3] Stalin, J. “The Foundations of Leninism,” in Problems of Leninism, FLPH Peking, 1976, p. 82.

[4] Ibid., p. 70.

[5] Acero Revolucionario (Revolutionary Steel), Special Issue, March, 2021.

[6] Ibid., p. 71.

Categories: International

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