On April 11, 1985, the revolutionary leader of socialist Albania passed away from a lingering heart condition at the age of 76. Enver Hoxha was born in 1908 to a petty-bourgeois family in Gjirokastër, then a part of the Ottoman Empire. Young Enver would distinguish himself as an exceptional student, an ability that carried him to study at the University of Montpellier in France. At this time he worked with anti-monarchist émigrés as well as with the Communist Party of France in Paris and would lose his job as a clerk in the Albanian embassy to Paris for this association. Hoxha returned to Albania to begin working as a French and morals teacher in Tirana and Korçe, until in 1939, fascist Italy invaded Albania, and Hoxha immediately set to work organizing with the communist cells in Korçe and around Albania. These cells would organize popular resistance to the Italian invaders and their puppet regime led by Shefqet Vërlaci in Tirana and elsewhere. The various cells would be unified into a single Communist Party (later renamed the Party of Labor of Albania) on November 8, 1941. The CPA issued a call to the Albanian peasantry to join the militant anti-fascist struggle and to hoard grain as well as livestock and refuse to pay taxes to the fascist puppet government. The Albanian proletariat and peasant masses waged an unremitting struggle against the reactionary forces, formalizing their cause in the National Liberation Movement, founded in Pezë in 1942.
The Albanian working masses struggled heroically for their liberation, fighting internal and external enemies for over three years until in 1944, Albania became the only country in Eastern Europe to have liberated itself from fascism without any direct support of the Allied powers. The People’s Republic of Albania was carefully established and began a program of nationalization, land redistribution, repairing the damaged infrastructure of the country, and securing reparations from the German and Italian fascists. Enver Hoxha served as the Prime Minister of the People’s Republic, elected to the office in 1946, and he secured the necessary reparations from the Axis countries and aligned the People’s Republic with the Soviet Union and the Socialist Bloc of Eastern Europe. The Party of Labor quickly became a mass party thanks to its incredibly successful literacy campaign, its defense of independent and free elections despite the interference of US and British imperialists, and the exposure of the treasonous national bourgeoisie of Albania.
Throughout the 1940s and 50s, the young and free Albania defended its borders from the aims of Italian, Greek, British, and Yugoslav imperialism. In this vein, the anti-revisionist (the defense of Marxism-Leninism against capitalist infiltration) struggle grew organically in socialist Albania as its sovereignty was directly threatened by the traitor, Josip Broz Tito, who purged the Yugoslav government of communists and began the process of opening up to the NATO imperialists and reintroducing capitalism into Yugoslavia. It was with great consternation that the revisionist coup in the Soviet Union in 1956 was received by the Party of Labor of Albania, as the new leader of the USSR, Nikita Khruschev, normalized relations with Tito, dissolved the Cominform and slandered the history of the USSR and the leadership of Joseph Stalin in his “Secret Speech” delivered at the 20th Congress of the CPSU(b).
In 1961, Hoxha, the Party of Labor, and the genuine communist parties of the world declared their opposition to the revisionist camp in a quite public speech at the International Congress of Communist and Workers Parties in Moscow. In the library of Marxist-Leninist theory, rhetoric, and analysis, there are few weapons more decisive and applicable in the present age of revisionist degeneration, collaboration and treason than this speech delivered by comrade Hoxha. This speech can be found in its entirety online, in the first Prism Key Press edition of Hoxha’s “Selected Works,” and on YouTube as well, under the title of Reject the Revisionist Theses of the XX Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and the Anti-Marxist Stand of Krushchev’s Group! Uphold Marxism-Leninism!
This defiant declaration in defense of the revolution against its betrayal and abandonment by the Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc countries led to a decisive split, where the CPSU(b) discontinued all aid to the People’s Republic of Albania, and directed certain threats against it via the Warsaw Pact. On the other hand Hoxha and the Party of Labor, joined at that time by Mao Zedong and the Communist Party of China, labored to build new revolutionary parties across the world. Those parties, with the aid and support principally of the PLA, developed mass organizations in the struggle against national fascism, the imperialism of the USA, and social imperialism of the USSR, and in many respects became mass parties themselves. Most of these parties exist to this day and are valiantly continuing the struggle against capitalism, imperialism, and collaboration with the above. They include but are not limited to the Communist Party of Spain (ML), the Marxist-Leninist Communist Party of Ecuador, the Revolutionary Communist Party of Brazil, and the Labor Party of Turkey, who all helped to form and now play leading roles in the International Conference of Marxist Leninist Parties and Organizations (ICMLPO) where the American Party of Labor is proud to stand as an Observing Member.
Despite the world-wide tumultuous revolutionary episodes of the late 1960s and 1970s, the prospects of these parties were damaged by the Sino-Albanian split in 1978. The reasons for this rupture between the People’s Socialist Republic of Albania and the PRC are beyond the scope of this article, but this division, among other historic factors, temporarily set back the world revolutionary movement once again. With these betrayals, with the most vicious fascist reaction against the Marxist-Leninist parties of the world and the grotesque social-imperialist designs and maneuvers of the USSR around the globe, the people of Albania led by Enver Hoxha did not relent, even though their own country was threatened by several Bay of Pigs-style invasions instigated by the NATO powers and Yugoslavia. However, revolutionaries are only flesh and blood and just as they make mistakes, they also are not long for this world. Enver Hoxha, who struggled with type 2 diabetes his whole life and which had exacerbated his heart condition, suffered a ventricular fibrillation on April 9 and passed away on April 11, 1985.
Seven years after his death, the People’s Socialist Republic of Albania would finally be overturned after decades of siege on all sides, infiltration by monarchist and liberal entities and individuals, and certain crucial mistakes made by the leadership of Ramiz Alia, who succeeded comrade Hoxha. However, the cause of socialism does not end with the death of individual men, does not end even when the imperialists drop their barrages, nor when the fascists sic their hounds, and the Marxist-Leninists of Albania reformed the PLA into the Communist Party of Albania and struggle to this day among the other heroic parties of the ICMLPO for the committed struggle against capitalism and all its manifestations. Indeed, there is a quote from Enver Hoxha that explains the resilience of Marxism-Leninism despite the trials, treason, and troubles:
No force, no torture, no intrigue, no deception can eradicate Marxism-Leninism from the minds and hearts of men.Enver Hoxha. “Eurocommunism is Anti-communism.”
¡Enver Hoxha Presente!
Enver Hoxha Tungjatjeta!
Long live Enver Hoxha, the Communist Party of Albania, and Marxism-Leninism!
Categories: Albania, History, International, Revolutionary History