Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Theory and Practice by Joma Sison



The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela rejects the unbelievable statement published today by the White House on 07/17/2017.

It is a document of a sort that has never been seen before, which, due to its poor level and awful quality, makes it difficult to intellectually understand the intentions of the assailant country.

Without a doubt, the government of the United States is used to humiliating other nations in its international relations and believes that it will receive as a response the subordination to which they are accustomed.

The trench that the government of the United States is digging in its relations with Venezuela makes it difficult to rationally predict its actions for the entire international community.

The government of the United States, unashamedly, shows its absolute bias towards the violent and extremist sectors of Venezuelan politics, which favor the use of terrorism to overthrow a popular and democratic government.

The moral ruin of the Venezuelan opposition has dragged President Trump to commit an open aggression against a Latin American country.

We know not who could have written, let alone authorized, a statement with such a conceptual and moral poverty.

The thin democratic veil of the Venezuelan opposition has fallen, and it reveals the brutal interventionist force of the U.S. government, which has been behind the violence suffered by the Venezuelan people in the last four months.

It is not the first time that we denounce and confront threats as ludicrous as those contained in this unbelievable document.

We call on the peoples of Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as on the free peoples of the world, to understand the magnitude of the brutal threat contained in this imperial statement and to defend the sovereignty, self-determination, and independence, fundamental principles of international law.

The original constituent power is contemplated in our Constitution and it only concerns the Venezuelan people. The National Constituent Assembly will be elected by the direct, universal, and secret ballot of all Venezuelans, under the authority of the National Electoral Council, as contemplated in our legal framework. It is an act of political sovereignty of the Republic, nothing and no one can stop it. The Constituent Assembly will go on!

Today, Venezuelan people are free and will respond united against the insolent threat posed by a xenophobic and racist empire. The anti-imperialist thought of the Liberator is more valid than ever.

“The United States seems destined by Providence to plague America with misery in the name of liberty” Simón  Bolivar

Monday, July 17, 2017

Rodong Sinmun: South Korean Authorities Should Opt for Repairing Relations with the North

Democracy and Class Struggle has long been expecting a "peace proposal" from South Korea following the election of President Moon Jae-in - but following Moon Jae-in's meeting with Donald Trump things appeared to turn for the worse - a new attempt by South Korea to float a new "peace" initiative has had this cautious response from the North Korean Newspaper Rodong Sinmun.

S. Korean Authorities Should Opt for Repairing Relations with North

The chief executive of south Korea made public his "conception of peace on the Korean peninsula" during his recent junket to Germany.

His "peace conception" seemed fortunate as he pledged to respect and implement the June 15 joint declaration and the October 4 declaration, unlike his predecessors' stance.

However, its overall contents are run through with an ill intention to escalate confrontation with the compatriots in the north and stifle them with the backing of outsiders.

They are all characterized by nonsensical sophism putting a brake on the efforts for achieving peace on the Korean peninsula and repairing the north-south relations.

As the present chief executive of south Korea uttered, proper beginning is important for everything.

In order to fundamentally improve, as desired by the fellow countrymen, the north-south relations complicated and twisted by festering distrust and antagonism, hostility and confrontation under the pro-U.S. conservative regime, and achieve peace and reunification on the Korean peninsula, it is important to make a good start.

It is necessary to do something badly needed and settle the fundamental issue above all at the starting point.

The intention of all Koreans and aspiration of candlelight demonstrators can never come true if the south Korean regime persists in reading the face of the U.S. displeasing the reconciliation and unity of the Korean nation and the pro-U.S. conservative forces desperately checking the improved north-south relations.

The south Korean authorities should not persistently depend on outsiders, going against the aspiration of all Koreans and the trend of the times, but opt for improving the north-south relations and achieving independent reunification by pooling efforts with the compatriots in the north.

Red Block at the Tollpuddle Festival of Socialism

The Red Block of Revolutionary Praxis and Democracy and Class Struggle were at the Tollpuddle Festival of Socialism - The Red Block was born out of the  No to NATO in Newport a few years ago and remerged in London in opposition to the visit of Indian President Modi and made it appearance at the Tollpuddle Festival of Socialism over the weekend.

Revolutionary Praxis organised a Forum : After the General Election Where Do we go from here ? at which the Corbynistas were invited to state their views Harry Powell and Nickglais challenged the idea of a Parliamentary Road to Socialism on the basis of the theory and practice of the Labour Party for the last 100 years.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

The Sacred War : Russian and Korean - Священная война 성스러운 전쟁

Democracy and Class Struggle says it will take the same determination in Korea to defeat US Imperialism as it took the Soviet Union to defeat Hitlerite Nazism and the Sacred War song unites their struggles.

NATO produce 8 minute film praising Baltic Nazi Waffen SS related Forest Brothers

Democracy and Class Struggle says this film should be a wake up call about the shameless direction of NATO and its revision of history. We agree with Dmitry Rogozin that NATO's insolence has reached its limit with this film.

Several Russian officials and politicians, including the foreign ministry spokesperson, criticized a documentary about the ‘Forest Brothers’ – pro-Nazi guerillas from the Baltic nations – recently released by NATO.

“I remember that 6 months ago the international community, including the leading mass media, was discussing whether Holocaust-themed dance shows should be allowed. I have a strong hope that these same people who claim that they care a lot about the tragic pages of history will also give their appraisal to this appalling stunt by NATO. I also hope that no one needs a reminder concerning mass executions performed by those who later started calling themselves Forest Brothers,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova wrote on her Facebook page.

The reaction came to the eight-minute reenactment film ‘Forest Brothers – Fight for the Baltics’ which was released by NATO. The film glorifies guerillas who fought against the Soviet regime in the Baltic countries, and depicts an ambush in which some Forest Brothers attacked and killed Soviet soldiers.

Zakharova called upon historians, reporters, and political scientists not to remain indifferent to this new attempt of distorting history. “Don’t remain indifferent, this is a perversion of history that NATO knowingly spreads in order to undermine the outcome of the Nuremberg Tribunal and it must be cut short!” she wrote. She also reminded her readers that many of the Forest Brothers were former Nazi collaborators and members of the Baltic Waffen SS, and that members of these guerilla groups killed thousands of civilians in their raids.

Russian deputy PM and former envoy to NATO Dmitry Rogozin was even harsher in his reaction to the film: “This reel with Forest Brothers killing our soldiers confirms the fact that when we face NATO we face the heirs to those of Hitler’s collaborators who survived the war,” he tweeted. The official noted that some time ago, when he worked as a plenipotentiary with NATO, such things would not have been allowed, but now “their insolence has reached the limit.”

Speaking to RT, Lower House MP Iosif Kobzon (United Russia) called the NATO film “vandalism and Russophobia,” adding that he was ready to propose the making of a film that would describe the story of the Forest Brothers movement in a more realistic light. He also recommended everyone watch the 1965 documentary ‘Triumph Over Violence’ by Soviet director Mikhail Romm, which describes in detail the atrocities committed by the Nazis and their allies and collaborators.

‘Forest Brothers’ is the unofficial name for guerilla units that offered armed resistance to the Soviet authorities in the three Baltic republics – Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia – from the late 1940s to the late 1950s. These guerilla groups killed at least 25,000 people in Lithuania alone, most of them civilians.

After the Baltic nations declared independence from the Soviet Union in early 1990, nationalist politicians in these countries began frequently using the images of Forest Brothers and Waffen SS veterans in their propaganda, depicting the Nazi collaborators as patriots who fought the Soviet regime. Russia has repeatedly denounced such moves as rewriting history and warned of the possible dire consequences of justifying Nazism.#


Boris Litvinov, Nueva Rusia. La solidaridad en la lucha por la autodeterminaciоn - Solidarity with Venezuela

Boris Litvinov, president of the Communist Party of Donetsk (RPD)

The story of the history of the eastern regions of Ukraine and the reasons for the rebellion against the aggression of the Kiev junta. The social, political and economic situation in the People's Republic of Donetsk (RPD) and the People's Republic of Lugansk (RPL) - New Russia (Novorossiya).


Abby Martin Meets the Venezuelan Opposition

DPRK Self Confident - Self Reliant - Army Dance Performance

Indonesia after Second World War by Jason B Smith

Union Hermanos Proletarios - Union of Proletarian Brothers ( Ernst Busch )

The UHP was an activist group in the Spanish province of Asturias that took part in the Asturian miners' strike of 1934. When the Spanish Civil War broke out, many UHP members fought on the Republican side. This song, written during the strike, was recorded by Ernst Busch in 1936 while in the Soviet Union

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Case 3000 Weapon Corruption Scandal threatens Netanyahu's Administration

The Trump Tragic Comedy - The Russian View : Assange: I urged Trump Jr to release emails on Russian lawyer via WikiLeaks

Another View from A Lawyer - everybody seems to need a Lawyer

Natalia Veselnitskaya, the lawyer who met with Donald Trump Junior last summer, allegedly to give him damning information about the Hillary Clinton Campaign and the DNC has come forward and said that Donald Trump Junior was absolutely desperate to get any kind of damning information on Hillary Clinton and the DNC.

Now according to the lawyer, she actually did not have any of this information. She had nothing to give Donald Trump Junior, but he basically begged her for it. He was desperate for it. In her own words, "He wanted it so badly." And when we talk about the issue of collusion it doesn't have to mean that he carried it out, that he followed through with it. It was that he attempted to.

Think of it almost as an undercover sting, right?

You know, you don't always have to commit the crime in order to get busted by the Feds.

Sometimes all you have to do is go along with it, be strung along long enough, admit that you want to do it and that's all it takes for a conviction.

And if this lawyer is telling the truth, and she did not have information for Donald Trump Junior, then that might be what we're looking at at this point.

However, what seems more likely is that she may not have had the information, but perhaps, again pure speculation, perhaps she directed him in the direction to get that particular information that he wanted.

But the bottom line is this: A day, a day after this story broke about Donald Trump Junior's meeting with this lawyer, he hired his own set of lawyers. 

That's how bad he understands this story will be for him. He doesn't call it fake news, he's not out there necessarily trying to say it didn't happen. In fact he's on Twitter saying, "Yeah, it happened, but it's not la la la."

He doesn't understand what he's trying to say and that's why he immediately, the next morning after the story broke, had to go out and hire lawyers.

Things are getting bad for the Trump Administration. Really bad. The evidence of collusion or at least attempted collusion attempted treason is becoming overwhelming at this point.

 Now we still have the private investigator, Bob Mueller out there doing his thing. Late last week he hired even more lawyers to start working on this case.

So something big is happening there as well.

Unfortunately we won't know that until they release their final report which hopefully will include some criminal charges against people in the Trump Administration.

But until then, until we get firm acknowledgement from those involved, everything is speculation and that is the part we have to keep in perspective here. We know Donald Trump met with the lawyer. She claims he wanted that Clinton information. He hasn't said whether or not that's why he met with her, so again, until a trial or until firm evidence emerges, that part is actually just speculation.

We can hope. We can hope that that is what he did and that is what we will find out from the investigation. But we have to be cautious going forward. We can't necessarily say that it did happen until we have all of the evidence and can say that without any shadow of a doubt.


The Great Donald Trump Junior Tragic Comedy Show with Stephen Colbert

Why did Putin pick "friends" like the Trumps and Marie Le Pen ? because he loves tragic comedies.


Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The next war between Israel & Hezbollah: When, how and why - academic tells you all you need to know

Who Is Venezuela's Leopoldo Lopez?

敬愛する最高指導者金正恩元帥の臨席のもと 大陸間弾道ロケットのテスト発射の成功を祝う 宴会が盛大に行われました


При участии Ким Чен Ына состоялся банкет в честь запуска МБР


The Secret War Against Soviet Russia : The The Great Conspiracy by Sayers and Kahn


Democracy and Class Struggle are pleased that this book has been available on audio on this 100 Anniversary of the Russian Revolution - it has stood the test of time against a multitude of deliberately confused interpretations of the Russian Revolution usually based on Trotsky's lies  - it had multiple references and footnotes which we checked out many years ago including references to Russian Fascist Movement in 1930's which has been erased from history by the bourgeoisie.

Colonel Raymond Robins meets Lenin

You may destroy us in Russia. You may destroy the Russian revolution in Russia. You may overthrow me. It will make no difference. A hundred years ago the monarchies of Britain, Prussia, Austria, Russia, overthrew the government of revolutionary France. They restored a monarch, who was called a legitimate monarch, to power in Paris. But they could not stop, and they did not stop, the middle-class political revolution, the revolution of middle class democracy, which had been started at Paris by the men of the French Revolution of 1789. They could not save feudalism.

"Every system of feudal aristocratic social control in Europe was destined to be destroyed by the political democratic social control worked out by the French Revolution. Every system of political democratic social control in the world to-day is destined now to be destroyed by the economic producers' social control worked out by the Russian revolution.

"Colonel Robins, you do not believe it. I have to wait for events to convince you. You may see foreign bayonets parading across Russia. 

You may see the Soviets, and all the leaders of the Soviets, killed. 

You may see Russia dark again as it was dark before. 

But the lightning out of that darkness has destroyed political democracy everywhere. 

It has destroyed it not by physically striking it, but simply by one flash of revealment of the future."

Lenin's wife exposes Trotsky's false history

Finnish Bolshevik on Trotsky's lies about "German October"

Video refuting German October

Kostas Mavrakis on Permanent Revolution  or Uninterrupted Revolution by Stages ?

The Great Co-incidence ? 4.40 pm on the 9th June 2016 following Donald Trump Junior's meeting with Natalia Veselnitskaya Donald Trump Senior tweets for first time about Hillary's missing 33,000 E mails

United States politics under Trump can only be addressed as tragic comedy and political insight comes from comedians like Stephen Colbert.

Democracy and Class Struggle has opposed and opposes US interference in the Russian Electoral System and other electoral systems worldwide and hence  has little sympathy for the hypocritical whinning of US Political Elite.

However we regard Donald J Trump who is nothing but a mobster from Queens as a particular and unique danger and proto fascist.

The elevation of a President of the United States by a process of corruption is nothing new and Truman the architect of the cold war was elevated by such methods.

This Tragic comedy of Donald J Trump will have a bad ending not only for the people of the United States but also for Russia as we have stated many times.

Fundamentally the problem is not just an individual like Trump but what he represents - a moribund political system of United States Capitalism in the 21st Century - trying to manage and repress contradictions that can only be resolved by transitioning to a post capitalist - socialist system.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Grenfell Housing and Local Councils - Capitalism and Housing

Democracy and Class Struggle echo's Engels in his essay on the Housing Question who says that capitalism would never solve the Housing Question but just move it around  

"How The Bourgeoisie Solves The Housing Question"

Like many of capitalism's ills they are returning in bucketloads in 21st Century - reformism has never tackled the structural prioblems that reproduce the problem - because that means the end of capitalism.

William Morris in the 1890's could see that but we are engaged on the blind reformist merry go round again.

Housing is a right and not a commodity but a common good and we need a system that realises that rational thought.


North Korea another case of US and Western double standards Gregory Elich of Korea Policy Institute

Democracy and Class Struggle says there are some well informed people in the United States about North Korea but like back in the 1950's when anyone who knew about China was marginalised especially the "Old China Hands" we have the same on North Korea today where informed people like Bruce Cumin's or Gregory Erlich or Christine Ahn are all marginalised because they happen to be informed.

Lenin Young Communist League of the Russian Federation visits North Korea

Pyongyang, July 8 (KCNA) -- A delegation of the Lenin Young Communist League of the Russian Federation led by Vladimir Isakov, first secretary of the C.C., the league who is secretary of the C.C., Communist Party of the Russian Federation, visited Mangyongdae, the birthplace of President Kim Il Sung.

The members of the delegation visited the Mangyongdae Revolutionary Museum which houses historic data and relics showing the revolutionary activities of the President and his family members.

Being briefed on the revolutionary career of the President and patriotic life of his family members at the old home, they went round the historic relics.

The delegation also toured the Korean Revolution Museum, Youth Movement Museum, Mangyongdae Schoolchildren's Palace, Natural History Museum, Central Zoo and other places

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Politcal and Cultural Formation in the Work of Antonio Gramsci by Peter Mayo


This lecture provides some new information for us - especially the origin of the optimism of the will  and pessimism of the intelligence quote.

Also the Southern Question and the question of internal colonialism while being theorised in Italy has truely Global Implications with centre and perifhery

Hamburg :The Dystopian Nightware of Repression at G20 Summit as 100,000 Take to Streets

Noth Korea if Trump attacks us it would be the final ruin of the United States

Democracy and Class Struggle says the UN Resolution condemning North Korea seeks to be a cover for United States military attack on North Korea - it seems history is repeating its self with manipulaton of the United Nations once again to give cover for a new Korean War.

The fact that a spurious history of the First Korean War has passed unquestioned for last sixty years despite the existence of the South Korean Truth and Reconciliation Commission shredding a lot of the western media created myths about the war means the past is present.

Trump,Putin, Russiagate Collide at G20

Capitalism and Bolshevism in Indonesia Part 2 by Jason B Smith

Friday, July 7, 2017

Moon Jae-in words are not enough - if you want peace - no pre conditions - visit Pyongyang Now !

Democracy and Class Struggle says the window of opportunity to prevent a catastrophe on the Korean Peninsula is closing - unless courage is shown there will be a world of regrets - in 1994 catastrophe was averted by Jimmy Carter getting on a plane to Pyongyang  - Moon Jae-in return from Hamburg to Pyongyang NOW !

During a speech Thursday ahead of the Group of 20 summit in Germany, President Moon Jae-in also proposed the two Koreas resume reunions of families separated by war, stop hostile activities along their heavily fortified border and co-operate on the 2018 Winter Olympics to be held in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

But it's unclear that North Korea would accept any of Moon's overtures as South Korea is working with the United States and others to get the country punished for its ICBM launch Tuesday. 

It's not the first time Moon has talked about a summit with Kim, but repeating that idea two days after the North's most successful missile test to date clearly indicates he prefers dialogue to applying more pressure or sanctions on the North.

"The current situation where there is no contact between the relevant officials of the South and the North is highly dangerous," Moon said.

"I am ready to meet with Chairman Kim Jong Un of North Korea at any time at any place, if the conditions are met and if it will provide an opportunity to transform the tension and confrontation on the Korean Peninsula."

Venezuelan Opposition Leader Looks to War, Coup and Invasion

Thursday, July 6, 2017

大陸間弾道ロケット「ファソン-14」型のテスト発射を 断行することについての命令を下達


Ким Чен Ын отдал приказ о проведении запуска МБР типа "Хвасон-14

Exxonmobil Against Venezuela

The Battle of the US Empire for Venezuela is underway - whatever differences we may have with aspects of the Venezuelan Government we must not play US and Exxonmobil's game.

Solidarity with our brothers and sisters in Venezuela in their struggle against the US Empire

Black Athena Part 1

Democracy and Class Struggle has been studying Kurdish Leader Abdullah Ocalan and his Roots of Civilisation which continues and expands the arguments of  Martin Bernal and shows not only the legacy of Egypt and Africa but also of Sumeria and Phoenicia and the Middle East to Greek Culture...

A timely revisit to a film first produced in 1991, exploring the debate around Prof. Martin Bernal's book “Black Athena” on the African origins of Greek culture.

Leading classicists and Egyptologists discuss Bernal's indictment that 19th century scholars systematically denied the connections between Greece and the non-European cultures of the Eastern Mediterranean.

The culture of ancient Greece had its origins in Africa and the East and that the West should recognize what it owes to Black and Eastern cultures.

Hiroshima before the dropping of the Atomic Bomb - A Reminder from the Past of normality turned into horror

Democracy and Class Struggle says with battlefield nuclear weapons lowering the threshold of nuclear weapon use nuclear horror is back on the agenda in 21st Century and normality can quickly end.

The presence of battlefield nuclear weapons in South Korea under United States control does nor augur well for the future - now that a US President Trump believes why have these weapons if you do not use them and has already dropped the largest non nuclear mother of all bombs in Afghanistan.

We are very near to midnight on the nuclear clock - wake up !

Wilfred Burchett one of the first Western Reporters in Hiroshima has lessons for today not only about Hiroshima but also about the Korean War - the Korean War has been a never ending War and it is time that a peace treaty is concluded in 2017.


Trump Embraced by Far-Right Anti Migrant Gov't in Poland

You do not fight the Tiger at the Front door by letting the wolf in at the back door :The Vietnamese and American navies have begun their eighth annual Naval Engagement Activity

Democracy and Class Struggle says you do not fight the Tiger at the front door buy letting the wolf in at the back door. The wolf Tillerson has already eyed the Oil for Exxon Mobil in the South China Sea. There will be no resolution of the problems in the South China Sea with involvement of the United States who has a deep interest in conflict from the South China Sea through to Taiwan to Korea Peninsular and Japan in an arc of containment of China to justify its "indispensible presence".

The Vietnamese and American navies have begun their eighth annual Naval Engagement Activity (NEA) in the coastal Khanh Hoa Province, days after a US vessel sailed past a disputed island in the South China Sea.

The NEA officially began on Wednesday when the USS Coronado and USNS Salvor ships docked at Cam Ranh International Port. Over the course of five days, crews from the two countries will practice diving, salvage, ship handling, medical evacuations, and the Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea (CUES).

Ashore, skill exchanges will be held focusing on shipboard damage control, shipboard medicine, and law. According to an official press release, there will also be “formal office calls, band concerts, community relations events, and team sports.”

“The United States values our comprehensive partnership with Vietnam and we look forward to deepening our relationship and people-to-people ties through engagements like NEA,” Rear Admiral Don Gabrielson said in a statement. “By working and interacting together regularly we foster meaningful relationships and trust between our nations that contribute to the peace and prosperity of the region.”

Held annually since 2010, this is the first time the event is being held in Khanh Hoa Province. Previous NEA exercises took place in Da Nang, 300 miles to the north.

U.S. NavyChina dispatches military vessels & fighter jets to warn off US warship sailing near disputed island

As well as the USS Coronado and USNS Salvor, US personnel from Task Force 73, Destroyer Squadron 7, and the 7th Fleet Band will also be present.

“These naval activities underscore the deepening and diverse relationship between the United States and Vietnam. Our security cooperation was an important discussion point during the recent meeting between President Trump and Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc,” said US Ambassador to Vietnam Ted Osius.

2017 marks the 22nd anniversary of the normalization of ties between the United States and Vietnam. The former Cold War enemies have grown closer since rapprochement began in the 1990s with greater military and economic co-operation, as well as mutual concern about China’s role in the South China Sea.

On Sunday, the US Navy provoked Beijing’s ire when a guided-missile destroyer sailed past Triton, an island in the South China Sea claimed by China, Vietnam, and Taiwan. The warship sailed within 12 nautical miles of the island, a US Defense Department official told Reuters.

China sent military vessels and warplanes to “warn off” the USS Stethem, and a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman called the operation “provocative,” adding that such actions “violate China’s sovereignty and threaten China’s security


G20 Welcome to Hell ; Demonstration Hamburg - Solidarity from Democracy and Class Struggle

Democracy and Class Struggle Salutes Protestors at G20 Hamburg and may Trump speed to Hell

Modi's Israel Trip Continues India's Rightward Drift by Vijay Prashad

Trump Talks Tough Instead of Talking to North Korea by Tim Shorrock

Democracy and Class Struggle says Tim Shorrock still has faith in Moon Jae-in the South Korean President - Democracy and Class Struggle have seen nothing concrete from Moon Jae-in and our hope for a new peace initiative from him has not been realised  

The current weakness of Moon Jae-in is contributing to possible pre emptive attack by United States on North Korea - the Trump /Moon meeting saw none of the backbone that he was advised to show by the South Korean Times.

Our view is that he is that Moon Jae-in is currently contributing to the deeping of the crisis and not its solution by his fawning and triangulating before Trump who will treat him as just another South Korean running dog.

Like Tim Shorrock we would like to see Moon Jae-in bite back and open a new initiative but we do not hold our breath in these dangerous times.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

بلاغ اكاديمية العلوم الدفاعية لجمهورية كوريا الديمقراطية الشعبية

Christine Ahn, the founder and international coordinator of Women Cross DMZ, a global movement of women mobilizing for peace in Korea.

Christine Ahn a real and rational voice of the Women Across the DMZ on Korea 

Despite 200 Israeli Nukes Aimed At Iran, US To Fund Israel Defense To Tune Of $700M

The newest draft of next year’s National Defense Authorization Act will give Israel hundreds of millions of dollars to develop missile defense systems against the non-existent nuclear threat of Iran while Israel points over 200 nukes at the Islamic Republic. Israel currently stands as the largest recipient of U.S. military and economic aid, receiving nearly $10 million daily.

Some have argued that Israel’s huge missile defense system is overkill, given the type of rockets that have targeted Israel in the past. For example, rockets launched by Hamas – which are mostly homemade and by no means military-grade – have caused minimal casualties compared to the repeated bombings of Gaza conducted by the Israeli Defense Forces over the years.

U.S. funding for the Israeli missile defense program is nothing new. In 2016, the U.S. spent $487.5 million on the program, which increased to more than $600 million in 2017. The millions of dollars the NDAA draft allocates to Israeli missile defense represents only a fraction of the military aid Israel receives annually from U.S. taxpayers. The amount of aid is so massive that current figures place the amount of U.S. military aid given to Israel on a daily basis at $9.8 million. It has been the largest recipient of U.S. economic and military aid since 1976.

This already enormous amount of military aid received a huge boost in 2016, when the Obama administration pledged $38 billion to the Israeli military over the next ten years. It was – and still is – the largest military assistance deal the U.S. has ever made with another nation. Allegedly, Israel agreed not to ask Congress for additional funds outside of the deal. However, the latest 2018 NDAA draft shows this apparent concession on Israel’s part was not meant to last, likely due to the Trump administration’s close ties to Israel.

In addition, Israel has long maintained that the development of state-of-the-art missile systems is essential in defending itself against Iran, citing concerns about Iran obtaining a nuclear weapon despite the 2015 Iran nuclear accord. However, U.S. and Israeli intelligence agencies are well aware that Iran has never had a nuclear weapons development program and that all of the nation’s nuclear activity has been used for civilian purposes.

Israel, by contrast, is widely known to have several hundred nuclear warheads in its arsenal, many of which are presumed to be exceedingly powerful and possess sophisticated delivery capabilities. According to leaked emails from former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, Israel has hundreds of nuclear weapons pointed at Iran. In addition, despite being the only nuclear power in the Middle East, Israel is the only country in the region that has refused to sign the nuclear weapon non-proliferation treaty.


Dakota Access Pipeline May be Shutting Down

Iran: Hundreds of artists mock Trump in Tehran cartoon competition

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Inter-continental ballistic rocket Hwasong-14 final gateway to self reliant defense in English and French

July 4th marks the final gateway to defense self reliance of DPRK

Moscow and Beijing have agreed that North Korea should freeze its nuclear and missile programs, while the US and South Korea should abstain from holding war games in the region

Democracy and Class Struggle the Moscow and Beijing proposal is not new and has been on the table from North Korea for sometime but hardly got a mention in the Western Media echo chamber.

The wording of the statement reflects the fact that North Korea has genuine concerns not least are the US and South Korean covert operations against North Korea upto and including assassination.

This statement makes it more difficult for a military assault on North Korea by the United States and it our view that both Russia and China would render assistance to North Korea if such hostilities commenced despite so called expert opinion to the contrary.

We still do not rule out such US hostilities because Moon Jae-in the new President of South Korea has proved to lack the backbone and will to call a spade a spade and stand up to Trump as he was advised to do by the Korean Times and he has emboldened the White House bloodlust

Moscow and Beijing have agreed that North Korea should freeze its nuclear and missile programs, while the US and South Korea should abstain from holding war games in the region, Russian President Vladimir Putin said.

“We’ve agreed to promote our joint initiative, based on Russian step-by-step Korean settlement plan and Chinese ideas to simultaneously freeze North Korean nuclear and missile activities, and US and South Korean joint military drills,” Putin said at a press conference after meeting with China’s leader, Xi Jinping, in Moscow.

Moscow and Beijing stressed the importance of taking North Korea’s concerns over its safety into consideration, calling them “justified.”

“The two sides stress that justified North Korean concerns should be respected,” a joint statement by Russia’s and China’s foreign ministers reads. “Other countries should make certain moves to resume the negotiations, creating a peaceful disposition and mutual trust.”

“A possibility of the use of military measures to solve the problems of the Korean Peninsula must be ruled out,” the joint statement stressed.

While condemning Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile tests as violating UN Security Council resolutions, Moscow and Beijing urged the United States to immediately halt its deployment of THAAD anti-missile systems to South Korea.

Source: RT

Capitalism and Bolshevism in Indonesia by Jason B Smith


Venezuelan Opposition violence will not intimidate the people by Jesus Rojas

The constitutional lawyer Hermann Escarrá stressed that the citizens support the call to  the  National  Constituent Assembly because  it has  understood  its function with greater clarity.  "I have toured several of the States and the enthusiasm is impressive, growing stronger.

The presidential  departure of the  convocation of the National   Constituent   Assembly   for   peace   and   for   a   different   superior dialogue   has   now   been   understood   more   clearly;   And   the   people   arebacking that, giving it a lot of legitimacy,"  he said in an interview on the Sunday show, José Vicente Hoy, broadcast by Televen.  

In   his   opinion,   the   Constituent   Power   was   activated   to   go   to   a   superior dialogue, after the opposition rejected in different opportunities the approach to a political dialogue with the Executive. 

"What would be that superior dialogue? 

A situation   where   the   dialogues   are   not   chosen   by   the   government   or   the Democratic   roundtable   Unity   (MUD),   but   directly   by   the   people.  

That   is,   a constituent process, "he said. The professor said that he has received information that some "intermediate leaders"   of   the   opposition   registered   in   the   Constituent   Assembly,   whose election of candidates will be made this July 30.

 "In such a way that we are going to have an opposition presence but with different faces, without a doubt, and that is good, it is plausible," he said.

Escarrá   believes   that   in   the   opposition   there   are   several   sectors:   an eschatological one, which wants to get rid of the president Nicolás Maduro at any cost; another that  tends   to be  radical,   and one, which in  his opinion is majority, is sensible, serious and has the disposition, desire and longing "that we understand each other from differences."

The constitutionalist lawyer maintains the importance of some sectors adverse to the government  joining  the  Constituent assembly to work   for the national good.  

"We do not have to go to hand-to-hand combat between brothers, families; we have to call for peace," he added.

He pointed out  that the constituent process is being convened, not only in Venezuela,  when   there  are  serious  political   situations.  

He   said   that   in   the country   has   had   throughout   its   history   16   constituent   processes, 12 constitutional reforms and two amendments. 

He rejected the threats of a sector so that the people do not go to vote on July 30 and stressed that, according to what he perceives, citizens will not be intimidated and will go to the polls for peace and dialogue

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Korea: Trumps Dangerous Trump Game

Democracy and Class Struggle says the Western Media echo chamber repeat daily that North Korea does not want negotiations while at the same time ignoring the North Korean proposals for a freeze on annual US/ South Korean Military nuclear and conventional military war games on North Korea in exchange for a temporary North Korean Nuclear Freeze.

North Korea wants recognition that it is a nuclear power by South Korea and United States.

The United States does not want to recognise this and wants to continue with its monopoly of nuclear weapons approximately 1000 of which are based in South Korea.

The reality is that North Korea is a nuclear power  and any de- nuclearisation talks on the Korean Peninsular will have to start with the removal of the US Nuclear Weapons from the Korean Theatre.

Arirang Korean Folk Song - The Beauty of Korea will outlast the Beast of Trump says Democracy and Class Struggle

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Chinese national oil corporation CNPC has ceased fuel sales to North Korea : Time for Chinese People to express support for DPRK



Reject the Revisionist Theses of the 20th Congress (1960) Enver Hoxha

The Democracy and Class Struggle Editor Nickglais discussed this 1960 Moscow meeting of 81 Parties at which Enver Hoxha spoke with Annie Powell from the Rhondda who was present as a representative of the CPGB at the 1960 meeting of 81 Communist Parties at her home in 1964.

It was this meeting that made us aware that Annie Powell was a staunch supporter of Khrushchevite revisionism largely because Khrushchev liked Annie's singing of the Welsh National Anthem not for any profound political reason - Khrushchev was a classic manipulator of people.

We established contact with Arthur Evans and the new anti revisionist movement as a result of this meeting and  started on our long march against revisionism which we battle to this day.

Publishing this speech of Enver Hoxha brought back those memories.

This speech of Enver Hoxha has passed into history and its anti revisionist perspectives were correct and have been validated over time

Enver Hoxha
First Secretary of the Central Committee of the Party of Labor of Albania

Reject the Revisionist Theses
of the XX Congress of the
Communist Party of the Soviet Union
and theAnti-Marxist Stand of Krushchev's Group!
Uphold Marxism-Leninism!

Speech Delivered by Enver Hoxha as Head of the Delegation of the Party of Labor of Albania Before the Meeting of 81 Communist and Workers Parties, Moscow, 16 November, 1960

First Delivered: In Moscow, 16 November, 1960, at the Meeting of 81 Communist and Workers' Parties.

First Published: In The Party of Labor of Albania in Battle with Modern Revisionism, "Naim Frasheri" Publishing House, Tirana, Albania, 1972


In his speech delivered at the Conference of the 81 communist and workers' parties in Moscow in November 1960, Comrade Enver Hoxha made an all-round analysis of the main problems that were concerning the international communist movement and firmly upheld Marxism-Leninism. This speech is one of the most important phases of the principled fight which the Party of Labor of Albania has waged to expose modern revisionism and consolidate the unity of the international communist and workers' movement.

The battle the Party of Labor of Albania has waged against the revisionist views of the Khrushchevite Soviet leadership began immediately after the XX Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Although this battle was not waged directly and openly at the beginning, the Party of Labor of Albania had made known all its reservations and objections to the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. The Party of Labor of Albania tried in every way to avoid publicising its differences with the Communist Party of the Soviet Union lest that would put weapons into the hands of the enemies of communism. On the other hand, it was not yet cognizant of Khrushchev's real intentions, therefore it tried to settle the differences through talks and consultations in a comradely spirit. While maintaining a principled stand, it strove and hoped to make the Soviet leaders realize their mistakes and take the right path.

The real treacherous features of the Soviet revisionists became more and more evident to the Party of Labor of Albania. The more their treachery was revealed, the harsher and more irreconcilable became the battle the Party of Labor of Albania waged against Khrushchevite revisionism in order to expose and crush it completely.

At the June 1960 Bucharest meeting the Party of Labor of Albania came out in the open in defense of Marxist-Leninist principles and cried "Halt!" to the Khrushchevite revisionists who attempted to hatch up a dangerous plot against the Communist Party of China and against the entire international communist movement.

After the Bucharest meeting the Soviet revisionist leaders launched a savage attack against the Party of Labor of Albania in order to force it into line with them and their deeds. Under these conditions, the Party of Labor of Albania became more thoroughly convinced that its principled stand on all the basic issues of the international communist movement should be maintained with the utmost courage and determination. It did this at the 1960 November Conference in Moscow.

In his speech at the Conference, Comrade Enver Hoxha, openly, frankly and with Marxist-Leninist courage, submitted the principled views of the Party of Labor of Albania on the main issues of the international communist movement about which differences had arisen and sharply criticized N. Khrushchev's revisionist group, both for its erroneous anti-Marxist views and actions as well as for its brutal interference in the internal affairs of the Party of Labor of Albania and the savage attacks it had launched against it.

The Party of Labor of Albania launched this absolutely principled criticism against the Soviet leaders in order to safeguard the unity of the international communist movement and the socialist camp, because unity cannot be preserved without exposing faults and alien manifestations, without condemning them forthrightly and without correcting them on Marxist-Leninist lines.

At the Moscow meeting, the Khrushchevites did their utmost to refute the criticism against their revisionist views and divisive acts. Their attempt was in vain.

Following the determined and principled stand of the Party of Labor of Albania on all the problems that were preoccupying the international communist movement, and after the speech of the Chinese delegation, the representatives of all the participating parties at the meeting were obliged to express their attitude one way or the other. Faced with this situation, the revisionists tried to draw the attention of the participants at the meeting away from principled issues and to turn the meeting into a platform of vicious attacks against the Party of Labor of Albania and the Communist Party of China. But this attempt also met with failure. The principled, internationalist stand of the Party of Labor of Albania in defense of Marxism-Leninism and the unity of the international communist movement was seconded by the Communist Party of China and by the delegations of a number of other parties. The Khrushchevite revisionists were obliged to back down.

Comrade Enver Hoxha's speech was a major contribution to the successful outcome of the Moscow Conference. Thanks to the determined battle waged by the Communist Party of China, by the Party of Labor of Albania and by some other parties, the Moscow Conference approved the Declaration. Included in the Declaration were certain incorrect conclusions and erroneous theses. On these assessments and theses, the Party of Labor of Albania entertained quite contrary views which it had also expressed openly at the Conference. The delegation of the Party of Labor of Albania signed the Declaration considering its content correct in general. While making concessions on partial matters for the sake of unity, the Party of Labor of Albania made no concessions whatsoever on the main issues which were connected with the basic principles of Marxism-Leninism.

The Party of Labor of Albania was of the opinion that unity in the international communist movement could be established if every party carried out the Declaration in good faith, and that the differences could be settled only by observing the norms governing the relations between Marxist-Leninist parties without making public these differences to the enemies of socialism. This is why the Party of Labor of Albania refrained from publishing Comrade Enver Hoxha's speech at the Moscow Conference at that time, but persisted in carrying out the Declaration which was approved there.

Comrade Enver Hoxha's speech at the Moscow Conference clearly shows that from that time onward, the Party of Labor of Albania would wage an open battle against bourgeois and revisionist ideology. Nevertheless, this battle had not yet assumed that breadth and depth which it assumed later as a logical consequence of the embitterment of the struggle between Marxism-Leninism and modern revisionism and of the degeneration of the Soviet revisionist leaders into a gang of renegades from and traitors to socialism. The whole document bears the seal of the time and circumstances under which it came to being. It is published without modification.

Institute of Marxist-Leninist Studies of the Central Committee of the Party of Labor of Albania

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

North-Korea-sentences-Park-Geun-hye-to-death-demands-her-extradition for attempted murder

Democracy and Class Struggle says assassination as a policy persued by South Korea and United States against the DPRK leadership is not only dangerous but politically self defeating.

To expect the DPRK to ignore such a policy directed against it and imagine it would not have consequences is insane.

In the Visit of President Moon Jae-in of South Korea to the United States this week and his meeting with President Donald Trump President Moon Jae-in should publically declare that assassination against DPRK leadership should no longer a policy pursued by the United States and South Korea .

In the words of the Korea Times Moon Jae-in needs to develop a backbone and call a spade a spade.

Пак Кын Хе Смертный приговор

Hands off Lenin! : ‘Patnaik Conjuncture’ and the travesty of Leninism by Bipon Balara

 “The task of a bourgeois professor is not to lay bare the entire mechanism, or to expose all the machinations of the bank monopolists, but rather to present them in favourable light"

                                                                                                                                             - Lenin1

Good Bye Lenin! So bids one of the pre-eminent theorists of Indian parliamentary left, Prof. Prabhat Patnaik. He has come up with the thesis that the ‘Leninist conjuncture’ has been superseded. Based on this thesis, he goes on to elaborate the right way for the Indian left. This right way involves two things: unequivocal de-linking from globalisation and the embrace of democracy and alliances with ‘progressive-democratic’ forces. Patnaik contends that ambivalence towards globalisation and democracy is at the root of left’s irrelevance in many parts of the world today and that2

In countries where communists have shed their ambivalence both towards opposing globalisation and towards defending democracy, they have remained a formidable force; and India is one such country.

Patnaik’s thesis is based on the assertion that the basic premise of Leninist conjuncture was the imminence of revolution and as revolutionary upheavals are not imminent in India, it has been superseded. Hence, the left has to follow his right way. Patnaik’s thesis on the demise of the Leninist conjuncture and his elaboration of the right tactical line for the Indian left serves as archetypal examples of reformist thought and opportunistic praxis. His article, which was published just days after the left – congress alliance in West Bengal came a cropper in the state legislative elections, has to be put in its proper political context. Patnaik’s painful theorising has to be seen as offering ideological prop-up to the social democratic, reformist line of Indian parliamentary left. So it is important that different strands of this thesis and the suggestions that flow from it be analysed and exposed from a proletarian revolutionary stand point. That is what this essay attempts to do.

Imminence of revolution vs Actuality of revolution

Patnaik’s whole argument about the supersession of the Leninist conjuncture stands on the premise that it is based on imminence of revolution. Patnaik argues that post-WWII capitalism “… made three major concessions to ward off the communist threat: decolonisation, the institution of democracy based on universal adult suffrage, and state intervention in ‘demand management’ to maintain high levels of employment…” This meant that “… the world had started moving away from what one can call the ‘Leninist conjuncture’. The moment of dazzling success of communism was also ironically the start of its decline”. Then Patnaik proceeds to analyse the simple reason for this decline:

The oft-repeated question why did communism collapse so suddenly, has, I believe, a simple answer: because the premise upon which it was founded no longer held, the premise of an imminent world revolution. As this imminence receded, communism had to reinvent and restructure itself, to come to terms with a post-Leninist conjuncture, in order to remain viable. This was difficult enough; it was made more difficult by a common but undesirable tendency among revolutionaries to place moral purity above practical politics and deny the non-imminence of revolution.

Two things need to be carefully analysed here. One, is imminence of revolution the basic premise of Leninist conjuncture? Two, was the post-WWII collapse of communist movements due to the supersession of the Leninist conjuncture and the ‘undesirable tendency among revolutionaries’ not to come to terms with it?

Georg Lukacs, in his celebrated essay on Lenin, locates his unique place in the pantheon of proletarian revolutionaries thus3:

Historical materialism is the theory of the proletarian revolution. … The stature of a proletarian thinker, of a representative of historical materialism, can therefore be measured by the depth and breadth of his grasp of this and the problems arising from it; by the extent to which he is able accurately to detect beneath the appearances of bourgeois society those tendencies towards proletarian revolution which work themselves in and through it to their effective being and distinct consciousness. By these criteria Lenin is the greatest thinker to have been produced by the revolutionary working class movement since Marx.

For a bourgeois thinker or an academic pen-pusher, it is important to present the material basis of the bourgeois society as eternal even when he is being critical of things which he regards as collateral excesses of capitalist system. The historically contingent nature of capitalist mode of production and bourgeois relations of production never become a factor in his analyses. Hence he remains impervious to the destabilising tendencies inside capitalism which, with every passing day, continue to prepare the objective ground for its destruction. So it is natural that proletarian revolution does not even find a place in the horizon of this thoughts. With a vulgar Marxist, things are even worse

… to a vulgar Marxist, the foundations of bourgeois society are so unshakeable that, even when they are most visibly shaking, he only hopes and prays for a return to ‘normality’, sees its crises as temporary episodes, and regards a struggle even at such times as an irrational and irresponsible rebellion against the ever invincible capitalist system.4

Patnaik reveals his academic, vulgar Marxist, reformist orientation very clearly when he asserts that imminence of revolution is the basis of Leninist conjuncture. What this means for Patnaik is that until a revolution becomes imminent, the proletarian party need not act in a revolutionary manner. It becomes a theoretical framework which can be used to justify all reformist, opportunist compromises and to advance a social democratic tactical line as the ‘Marxist’ one.

It becomes a weapon to smuggle in a theory of stages into the proletarian movement which preaches thus: until the revolution becomes imminent, the ‘left’ may shed its revolutionary orientation, become more flexible, place practical politics above ‘moral purity’, and may unite with bourgeois and petty bourgeois parties “…in struggles, on platforms and even in government”; once revolution becomes imminent the movement may switch over to the revolutionary ‘mode’.

The stages theory preached by Patnaik is an infallible strategy to make sure that a revolution never becomes imminent; it also ensures that the pristine silence pervading the CESP corridors is not broken and that the academicians sitting inside can continue their exercises in sophisticated reformism. Here Patnaik conveniently forgets that the revolutionary orientation of the proletarian movement is one of the factors contributing to the maturing of a revolutionary situation. As Lenin contented5: “… our propaganda and the propaganda of all social-democrats6 is one of the factors determining whether there will be a revolution or not.” Thus it emerges that waiting for the imminence of revolution cannot be the basis of genuine revolutionary praxis.

To grasp the real premise of the Leninist conjuncture, we have to follow Lukacs closely who asserts that actuality of revolution, and not its imminence, forms the real core of Lenin’s thought

The actuality of revolution: this is the core of Lenin’s thought and his decisive link with Marx. … This means that the actuality of proletarian revolution is no longer only a world historical horizon arching above the self-liberating working class, but that revolution is already on its agenda.

What does actuality of revolution mean? Isn’t it the same as imminence? Doesn’t the phrase ‘revolution is already on its agenda’ above mean that the revolution is imminent? No, the Marxist-Leninist actuality of revolution and Patnaik’s imminence of revolution are very different premises. But before we go into that, let us examine the dictionary meanings of these expressions. Merriam-Webster gives the meaning of imminent as “happening very soon”, “ready to take place” and “hanging threateningly over one's head” and that of actuality as “the quality or state of being actual or real” and “something that is actual or real”. Imminence of revolution means that revolution is about to take place and its actuality means that revolution has ceased to become a utopian illusion, that the germs of revolution can be clearly discerned in the interstices of the present society7. Lukacs makes clear that the theory of historical materialism is itself a product of this actuality of revolution

For historical materialism as the conceptual expression of the proletariat’s struggle for liberation could only be conceived and formulated theoretically when revolution was already on the historical agenda as a practical reality; when, in the misery of the proletariat, in Marx’s words, was to be seen not only the misery itself but also the revolutionary element ‘which will bring down the old order’.

As Engels has stressed in Anti-Duhring, Fourier, Saint-Simon or Owen could not have gone beyond utopian socialism because of the insufficient growth of capitalism during their times. Marx could frame the revolutionary theory of historical materialism because mature industrial capitalism in England already flaunted its contradictions to the judicious eye8. The Leninist conjuncture is based on nothing else but the Marxist conjuncture of the actuality of revolution; what Lenin did was that he “re-established the purity of Marxist theory on this issue9”.

Imminence of revolution assumes a fully matured revolutionary situation, actuality of revolution signifies an economic, political and social situation which is pregnant with reality of revolution, a situation in which the contours of revolutionary potential, even though imperceptible to the bourgeois or reformist eye, is nevertheless clear to the discerning look of materialist dialectics. Imminence of revolution is a static concept, signifying the impending revolution without any reference to the historical processes that lead to the constitution of such a situation or to the development of the revolutionary agency which will consummate the revolution; actuality of revolution is a dynamic concept which resides in the flux of history, in the process of history, signifying the slow but steady maturing of the contradictions of capitalism and the growth of the historical agency of working class and its consciousness as the subjective element of this actuality.

Patnaik hopes to find, as if by magic, a revolution which is imminent and to suddenly flip a switch which will impart revolutionary agency to a movement drenched in opportunist compromises and welfare illusions of its pre-imminent phase. Lenin discerns, under the calm exteriors of bourgeois society, the churning of an objective historical process preparing the ground for its own destruction and understands the need to develop the subjective agency which is conscious of this actuality and which is steeled enough through revolutionary political struggles to consummate this actuality. And most importantly, actuality of revolution connects the everyday political work of the revolutionary workers’ party to its ultimate goal, the proletarian revolution, something that Patnaik’s specious theory of imminence could never hope to do.

… it was through this actuality that both [Marx and Lenin] gained a sure touchstone for evaluating all questions of the day. The actuality of the revolution provides the key-note of the whole epoch. Individual actions can only be considered revolutionary or counter revolutionary when related to the central issue of revolution, which is only to be discovered by an accurate analysis of the socio-historic whole. The actuality of revolution therefore implies study of each individual daily problem in concrete association with socio-historic whole, as moments in the liberation of the proletariat.10

The actuality of revolution, as a guiding principle, affects the dialectical union of the process and goal, of the day-to-day work of the working class movement and the final goal of proletarian revolution, whereas, imminence fragments the totality of revolutionary struggle into pre- and post-imminent situations with no continuity between them, at the border of which the movement is supposed to switch over from reformist to revolutionary mood at the snap of a finger. Actuality asserts the totality of the revolutionary struggle whereas imminence fragments it and lends it impotent. Imminence presents every political question in the pre-imminent phase as a question only of reform whereas actuality “means that every question of the day – precisely as a question of the day – at the same time became a fundamental problem of the revolution.” This dialectical union of the ‘question of the day’ and the ‘fundamental problem of revolution’ shines through as the biggest achievement of Lenin’s thought and politics. All of Lenin’s political thought is a study in the dialectical union between the immediate political questions and the ultimate revolutionary struggle.

Neil Harding has extensively documented11 the ‘remarkable coherence and consistency’ in Lenin’s political strategy. This consistency owes its existence to two factors: one, Lenin always based his political strategy on detailed class analysis of existing economic relations and two, each one of Lenin’s strategies was informed by the actuality of the final aim, that of proletarian revolution. For Lenin, the primary duties of the vanguard of the working class were to exactly gauge, based on class analysis of the objective socio-economic reality, the potentialities of each political situation and to orient the proletarian struggle towards consummation of the most radical potentiality, in direct opposition to the bourgeois and petty bourgeois12 efforts not to take the situation to its radical limits.

The radical potentiality of concrete situations will only be revealed in relation to the final aim of the movement. In other words, it is the actuality of revolution which informs the theoretical analysis and practical strategy of the vanguard. As Harding remarks13

The task of the social democratic vanguard was always to have the next stage of development in view. It was, as Lenin once put it, ‘to see the future in the present’. Theory, far from being retrospective, was, for Lenin, valuable only because it was predictive. The claim to authority of the social democrats (and later communists) was derived from their prescient awareness of the broad outlines of the next phase of the historical progression – they claimed to know what was coming into being.

So, it is obvious that Lenin saw the struggle for the liberation of the proletariat to be a continuous process and that seeing the ‘future in the present’ to be nothing else other than to be informed and guided by the actuality of revolution. Leninism urges us to analyse and realise the full potential of the concrete present in relation to the actuality of the future revolution. This also shows us that Leninist thought and practice is not a switch which is to be flipped on only once the revolution is imminent, as Patnaik would have us believe, but is a constant presence which stresses the continuity of proletarian strategy and the need to view each political situation in a revolutionary manner. Probably, Lenin had people like Patnaik in mind when he wrote that14

It is not difficult to be a revolutionary when revolution has already broken out and is in spate, when all people are joining the revolution just because they are carried away, because it is the vogue, and sometimes even from careerist motives. After its victory, the proletariat has to make most strenuous efforts, even the most painful, so as to “liberate” itself from such pseudo-revolutionaries.It is far more difficult— and far more precious— to be a revolutionary when the conditions for direct, open, really mass and really revolutionary struggle do not yet exist, to be able to champion the interests of the revolution (by propaganda, agitation and organisation) in non-revolutionary bodies, and quite often in downright reactionary bodies, in a non-revolutionary situation, among the masses who are incapable of immediately appreciating the need for revolutionary methods of action. To be able to seek, find and correctly determine the specific path or the particular turn of events that will lead the masses to the real, decisive and final revolutionary struggle.
Instead of exhorting the left to be vibrant and radical, Prof. Patnaik is urging the Indian left in the opposite direction, to stop being revolutionary until revolution is imminent, to be flexible and to hide behind the back of opportunist alliances and to barge in once the revolution is served on a platter. Lenin correctly identifies such people as ‘pseudo-revolutionaries’ with ‘careerist motives’ from which the proletariat has to ‘liberate itself’. If Lenin was alive today, our ‘Professors’ would have branded him a puritan fool!

In the above quoted passage, Lenin provides an exact and succinct description of the revolutionary duty of communists in a non-revolutionary situation: “… to be able to champion the interests of the revolution (by propaganda, agitation and organisation) in non-revolutionary bodies … To be able to seek, find and correctly determine the specific path or the particular turn of events that will lead the masses to the real, decisive and final revolutionary struggle”. We have already seen that reformist social democrats like Patnaik envisage a totally different path. When the former tries to “determine the specific path or the particular turn of events that will lead the masses to the real, decisive and final revolutionary struggle” and to orient the specific strategy of the moment based on this, the latter, having lost any and all appreciation for the actuality of the ‘final revolutionary struggle’ because of their petty bourgeois class orientation, gropes in the dark, sees only the present, vacillates, weighs different options in compromise and at last arrives at the easiest regressive option meant at diffusing the present crisis as quickly and uneventfully as possible. Many examples for these two diagonally opposite approaches can be cited from the Russian experience itself, but let me restrict myself to one, that too very briefly.

During Russia’s 1905 revolution, both Lenin’s Bolsheviks and the Mensheviks were convinced that the scope of this revolution was bourgeois-democratic in nature15. But they drew vastly different conclusions from this premise. The Mensheviks concluded that as it was a bourgeois-democratic revolution, the class that will lead this revolution had to be the bourgeoisie; the proletariat had to play second fiddle, in alliance with the bourgeoisie and has to be careful not to do anything ‘reckless’ which will make the bourgeois ‘recoil’ and retreat from the revolution against the monarchy. In other words, the Mensheviks argued that the revolution had to remain strictly within the coordinates of bourgeois aspirations and should go only as long as the bourgeoisie take it; they were for hiding carefully behind the bourgeois backs who were given the leading role.

Lenin violently disagreed16. He correctly argued that in countries which already had a fully formed proletariat, the bourgeoisie will never be interested in fully realising all the progressive potential of democratic revolution. Instead of decisive and complete decimation of the monarchy and feudal super structure, the bourgeoisie would want many of the ‘remnants of the past’ to be carefully preserved so that they act as an impediment to the growth of proletarian class consciousness and can be used as a bulwark in the class struggle against the proletariat.

Based on this class assessment of the ‘inconsistency’ and ‘treachery’ of the bourgeoisie, Lenin concluded that consummation of the most “complete, determined, and consistent democratic revolution” in Russia was the duty of the proletariat! Hence, what was needed was not an alliance with the bourgeoisie but that the proletariat take up the leading role in the revolution and force the hands of the bourgeois class which is “self-seeking and cowardly in its support of the revolution” to consummate the democratic revolution in the most complete and radical manner.

What is the root cause of this difference of strategies between Lenin and the Mensheviks? Mensheviks approached the democratic revolution in an ahistorical manner, in an empirical vein, as a problem of democratic revolution alone. They had long since forgotten the dialectical link between the present struggle and the final aim. But Lenin, a dialectician to the core keenly aware of the actuality of proletarian revolution, was able to understand that the way in which the democratic revolution was consummated would have a direct bearing on the balance of the class struggle between proletariat and bourgeoisie after that and on the prospects of proletarian revolution, i.e., he saw ‘the future in the present’.

The bourgeois would only be interested in the consummation of democratic revolution in a form that was least beneficial to the proletariat, in a partial, inconsistent form affected through compromises with the monarchy and feudal forces. But the proletariat is interested in a form of democratic revolution which will sweep away all the decayed remnants of the feudal past, ensure the “broadest, freest and the most rapid development of capitalism” that will set the stage for a rapid and unhindered maturing of class contradictions and proletarian class consciousness.

Hence the famous expression from Lenin that “there are bourgeois revolutions and bourgeois revolutions”. So it clearly emerges that the difference between the opportunists and Lenin was based on his appreciation of the actuality of the proletarian revolution, which allowed him to see the present democratic revolution as a stage in the whole continuous process of class struggle. What Lenin is advocating here is the dialectical unity of the present strategy and the final aim; to make sure that the bourgeois revolution is consummated in a form which is most beneficial to the struggle for the ultimate liberation of the proletariat. This makes it absolutely clear that actuality of revolution is the cornerstone of Leninist conjuncture and that Patnaik’s imminence is its vulgarisation and a reformist excuse.

So, has the Leninist conjuncture been superseded? We are living through the most severe and drawn out capitalist crisis since WWII. Major capitalist economies are stuck in a mire with no immediate prospect of revival in sight, the so called emerging economies are being pulled into it. With the Chinese economy which, according to World Bank data, made the largest contribution to global economic growth over the past decade experiencing major problems, the contradictions of global capitalism are beginning to be laid bare more than ever. The unipolar supremacy of the US is eroding, the European bloc is imploding from within and inequality levels are touching pre-1930 standards. On the subjective front, spontaneous movements are cropping up in all parts of the globe, may it be the occupy movement, the unrest in Greece or struggles in even developed parts of Europe.

Statistics show that there has been a manyfold increase in the number of strikes in China which is experiencing a surge in workers’ militancy. Rank and file workers’ struggles are on the rise in India too with some of them, like the textile workers agitation in Bangalore, bringing the whole state apparatus to its knees in hours. Many of these struggles are not explicitly anti-capitalist in nature, many of them are not even proper working class movements, most often they are spontaneous outpourings of pent up anger. But what cannot be denied is that such movements arise because the acute contradictions of capitalism has made its effect felt on the toiling class which is beginning to question the sustainability of such a system more than ever.

Furthermore, liberal parliamentary democracy has been thoroughly exposed as nothing but a bourgeois façade. The very foundations of the bourgeois edifice is visibly shaking. In such a condition, for a class conscious proletarian revolutionary, the actuality of revolution shines through with exceptional clarity. There has been no other age in the post-war history in which the Marxist-Leninist conjuncture based on the actuality of revolution has been more pertinent. The Leninist conjuncture, far from being superseded as Patnaik’s reformist theory would have it, is THE living, throbbing, motoring force of history right now which the toiling class has to imbibe.

In spite of this, it remains true that revolution is not imminent. The spontaneous rank and file movements arising in every part of the globe does not still exhibit a consistent anti-capitalist orientation and are not conscious enough to see the liberation of the working class as the only practical solution of the existing contradictions. They are still ‘economic’ in nature and are, at best, advocating the fair redistribution of wealth rather than a change in the mode of production. This is because a class conscious proletarian vanguard which can uncover the social and political roots of these economic grievances to the toiling class and which can unify these spontaneous struggles into a broader and more purposeful social struggle does not exist17. This void was created, as Patnaik correctly remarks, due to the slow and gradual decay of working class parties worldwide in the post-war era. What was the main reason for this decay? It is here that Patnaik fires his second great salvo. He has already theorised that the Leninist conjuncture, based on imminence of revolution, has been superseded after the war.

This situation, opines Patnaik, called for communism to “reinvent and restructure itself, to come to terms with a post-Leninist conjuncture, in order to remain viable.” It failed to live up to this task, he suggests. “This was difficult enough; it was made more difficult by a common but undesirable tendency among revolutionaries to place moral purity above practical politics and deny the non-imminence of revolution.” Thus he asserts that it was the inability of the left to correctly gauge and appreciate the demise of Leninism that led to their downfall. This is a naked travesty of post-war history. It is not just that the decay of left was not caused by their inability to outlive Lenin, but that the exact opposite is true. The decay of the global left has its roots in its inability to gauge and preserve the topicality of the Marxist – Leninist conjuncture based on the actuality of revolution, in its abandonment of the revolutionary question, in its metamorphosis into social democracy and in its descend into the ranks of ‘welfarism’. Through what Charles Post has termed the ‘gradual process of social democratisation’, the left parties

…adapted the political strategy of social democracy – alliances with capitalist and middle class liberals in defence of the institutions of the democratic capitalist state, and seeking reforms through parliamentary activity and routine collective bargaining rather than mass, militant struggles

and drifted towards a political orientation “designed to administer the crisis and not to make profound transformations18”. They began to resemble closely the social democratic parties of the second international for which “…the daily non revolutionary routine became the be all and end all”. This ‘social democratisation’ had clear political economic reasons. The post-war capitalist boom which ushered in the so-called ‘golden age of capitalism’ bred illusions in much of the intelligentsia

…it became the orthodoxy on the right and much of the left to proclaim that the contradictions in the system perceived by Marx had been overcome. The key change, it was argued, was that governments had learned to intervene in the economy to counteract tendencies to crisis along the lines urged in 1930s by John Meynard Keynes.19

The left, faced with a booming capitalism and the claim that the contradictions had been dealt with, chose exactly the same option that Patnaik is advocating now; forget the actuality of revolution, abandon the Marxist – Leninist conjuncture, prostrate before the logic of capital and become reformist. So when crisis, which was supposedly consigned to the historical dust bin, came back crashing through the front door in the late 60s and early 70s, the reformist left was caught napping. Because by then, as Post remarks, “Decades of routine collective bargaining and parliamentary – electoral politics combined with a highly centralised and bureaucratic internal life had transformed the bulk of the rank and file of the communist parties into supporters of the forces of official reformism – the labour and party-parliamentary officialdom”.

It was the capitalist class which made quick and thorough use of the crisis to pull history further towards right because they were much more class conscious and prepared; the bourgeoisie had never seen ‘welfare state’ as nothing else but a temporary adjustment to wade through a difficult post-war situation. At the first opportunity, it phased out the welfare state and rolled in neo-liberalism, crushing any resistance that was offered. The left, devoid of all revolutionary content after all those years of peaceful, flexible, non-puritan, non-revolutionary politics, could conjure up nothing but a pitiable squeal to return back to the good old days of ‘state funding20’.

Patnaik’s conjuncture on the demise of Leninism and his assertion that the decay of the left was caused by its obstinacy to let go off Lenin immediately runs into trouble. It fails the very first practical test that it is put to by its author itself. This illusionary construct implodes on its very first contact with real history. Unable to make sense of facts with his reformist conjuncture, Patnaik presents them as riddles of history21.

During the ‘golden age’ years when one would have expected the appeal of communism to diminish, it did not, while in the era of globalisation when the misery of the working people are mounting everywhere and capitalism is attenuating democracy and the welfare state, communism, far from gaining ground, seems to be at loss.

I shall suggest a simple method to solve this riddle; take off those reformist glasses and prepare yourself to look the facts in the eye. Replace the word ‘communism’ above with ‘social democracy’ and the riddle solves itself! But with it, out goes the ‘Patnaik conjuncture’.It was bureaucratic social democracy that ‘retained’ its parliamentary support base during capitalist boom and it is the same social democracy which is finding it difficult now to stop it from eroding. The support was retained in the ‘golden age’ by caving in for popular notions about the infallibility of capitalism and by converting themselves into fixers of capitalism. The class essence of this support was thoroughly petty bourgeois. In the neo-liberal era of recurring crisis and mounting misery, it is obvious that a movement which based itself on the possibility of a humane and crisis free capitalism, and which internalised these welfare illusions in its day-to-day political practice, would find its support deserting it. When, as Patnaik correctly remarks, ‘capitalism attenuates the welfare state’, how can a Left which had rooted itself in the possibility of achieving a just society through welfare state stop from being irrelevant? Hence, this is no ‘conundrum’ as laid out by Patnaik, but is the logical result of Lefts’ reformist embrace.

A communist movement thrives on capitalist crisis22; crisis serves as the most effective lesson in historical materialism to the working class and impresses upon them the correctness and practicality of revolutionary Marxism. When a capitalist crisis erupts and workers’ lives take a turn from bad to worse, revolutionary communist movements alone, which had relentlessly preached to them the inherently contradictory nature of capitalism shall preserve the locus standi to direct the working class. Hence, at seemingly ‘golden’ times for capital, the proletarian vanguard does not drop its guard and switch over to non-revolutionary politics but keeps the actuality of revolution alive in workers’ consciousness, organises its troops and build strength in workers’ struggles.

Once the crisis flaunts capitalism’s contradictions, the workers, even those who had no sympathy to them, gradually grasp that the consistent revolutionary line of the vanguard was all along the correct one. The prospects of Lenin’s Bolsheviks provide a good example for this. With limited presence even in the bigger cities prior to the imperialist war, their popularity and reach exploded once the war went sour. Every passing day aggravated the crisis and showed to the working class the hollowness of the patriotic line of the bourgeoisie and the pacifist or centrist line of social democracy. The Bolshevik’s consistent revolutionary line even at the beginning of the war when the patriotic fervour was at its peek at last was vindicated, which began to swell their ranks.

This sudden reversal in the fortunes of the Bolsheviks still remain such an incomprehensible mystery to specialist bourgeois historians that they are forced to conjure up exotic theories to explain it23. The prospects of reformist movement takes the opposite course, their ranks swells in calm times, with workers deserting them once the crisis breaks. Clearly it is this course that the social democratic left of the post-war era has taken.

Imperialism, War and Revolution; Patnaik as the Indian Kautsky

We have seen that the very first contact with history obliterated the ‘Patnaik conjuncture’ and its explanation for left’s post-war decay. Now, we have to wade through Patnaik’s next theoretical contribution in his article, that of warless imperialism.

Patnaik goes on to enlighten us about the reasons for his assertion that revolution is not imminent. He sees the present age as one characterised by “… a muting of inter-imperialist rivalries” mainly due to the “… emergence of globalised or international finance capital which saw all partitioning of the world as standing in the way of its freedom to move globally.” He emphatically concludes that24

The era of struggles for repartitioning the world among rival nation-based monopoly combines was over since such combines no longer held centre stage. In short, the Leninist conjuncture had been superseded; wars of course continued, but they did not express inter-imperialist rivalry, not even by proxy.

The gist of Patnaik’s logic is very clear: imminence of revolution was the basis of Leninist conjuncture and inter-imperialist war was the reason for this imminence. Now that finance capital has obliterated imperialist rivalries and with it the chance of imperialist wars, revolution cannot be imminent. Hence Leninist conjuncture stands superseded. Nice! This argument is a shocking travesty of the spirit of Marxism-Leninism and a naked vulgarisation of Marx’s ideas of revolutionary change. But first we have to dwell upon some historical parallels which will make the class basis of Patnaik’s argument clear. In 1915, Karl Kautsky had put forward his theory of ‘ultra-imperialism’ order to justify his ‘centrist’ line of not opposing the imperialist WWI in a revolutionary way and of maintaining a laughable false neutrality in the face of war. Lenin characterised it thus25

‘From the purely economic point of view’, writes Kautsky, ‘it is not impossible that capitalism will yet go through a new phase, that of the extension of the policy of cartels to foreign policy, the phase of ultra-imperialism’, i.e. of a super imperialism, of a union of the imperialisms of the world and not struggles among them, a phase when wars shall cease under capitalism, a phase of ‘the joint exploitation of the world by internationally united finance capital’.

Thus, what Patnaik is really asserting is that we are living in the age of Kautsky’s ‘ultra-imperialism’.

In the year 2000, when Leftword Books brought out an edition of Lenin’s Imperialism, they got a theorist of international repute from among the left intelligentsia to write its introduction. This introduction spiritedly attacked the notion that inter-imperialist rivalries have died down and that Kautsky’s prediction has proved to be correct rather than Lenin’s. In it, we read the following

The fact that globalisation of finance capital has brought about a degree of unity among the imperialist countries, at least in their dealings with the Third World, may create the impression that the world has moved to the Kautskyan vision of ‘ultra-imperialism’ rather than remaining submerged in ‘inter-imperialist rivalries’ as Lenin had prognosticated, that real developments have vindicated Kautsky rather than Lenin. To believe this, however, would constitute a serious misreading … of contemporary reality.

Patnaik’s assertion that inter-imperialist rivalries have been muted and imperialist wars have ceased, constitute such a ‘serious misreading’. The irony is that the ‘reputed theorist’ who wrote this introduction and attacked all varieties of Kaustkyan ultra-imperialism in 2000 was none other than Prof. Prabhat Patnaik26. Surely, some drastic qualitative change in the character of capitalist imperialism has happened in the last 15 years that prompted our Professor to do an intellectual somersault. Now he embraces the theory of warless super-imperialism brought about by finance capital that he had completely rejected and attacked in 2000. We shall go through his arguments in 2000 against his own position now and try to guess what prompted him to change his stand in such a dramatic manner.

Patnaik, in his 2000 Introduction, summed up Lenin’s approach to the theory of conflict-less imperialism thus

‘Ultra-imperialism’ thus was repugnant to Lenin because it conjured up a vision of global peace under capitalism … The line of his [Lenin’s] attack was as follows: uneven development under capitalism necessarily implies that any agreement among the imperialist powers for the joint exploitation of the world, which is based on their prevailing relative strengths, gets undermined over time: a redrawing of the agreement is achieved through the use of force. Conflicts and struggles between the imperialist powers, even if interrupted by periods of truce, are a perennial feature. Peaceful periods are mere interludes of temporary truce; permanent peace under capitalism is impossible.

Back then, Patnaik was in complete agreement with the Leninist attack on the ‘reactionary ultra-imperialist fable’ and proclaimed that war was ‘an inevitable outcome of imperialism’. He was very sure that the current phase of imperialist unity in the face of globalised finance capital was only a transient phenomenon. He wrote

The current unity among the imperialist powers too may prove to be only transient. What is more, even if the unity lasts, i.e., even if inter imperialist conflicts remain muted, this still does not mean that wars would have been avoided, since other kinds of wars would break out to disrupt the ‘joint exploitation of the world by internationally united finance capital’. One obvious example would be wars between united imperialism and countries unwilling to toe its line.

It is amazing how much distance Prabhat Patnaik has covered in the last 15 years, from being an unequivocal supporter of the Leninist notion of ‘permanent strife’ under imperialism, to an ardent advocate of a ‘warless, peaceful’ imperialism with all rivalries obliterated by finance capital. All this, only to be able to proclaim the ‘demise of Lenin’ and to justify the ‘non-revolutionary’ politics of the reformist left. It is important to note here that, back then, Patnaik had highlighted two important points in support of the Leninist version of imperialism. 1) Any unity among imperialist powers can only be temporary, inter-imperialist conflicts, even if interrupted by lengthy periods of truce, cannot be avoided. 2) Because of ‘uneven development of capitalism’, which Lenin had stressed, imperialist wars may take the form of wars by a bloc of developed countries on other countries ‘unwilling to toe their line’. He now vehemently opposes both of these points.

Patnaik maintains now that finance capital has heralded in an era of ‘warless imperialism’ and that the current truce among imperialist powers is permanent. For him, the wars being fought now are not the expression of contradictions of imperialism and have got nothing to do with inter-imperialist rivalries, ‘not even by proxy’. Why such a dramatic change in opinion? Is it prompted by any equally dramatic qualitative change in the characteristics of finance capitalism and imperialism in the last 15 years? Obviously NO. If Prof. Patnaik can perceive such a change in the basis of imperialism which has made it ‘ultra’ and ‘rivalry free’ in 15 years, he should not hold it from his disciples! What can be clearly perceived is that finance capital’s pursuit of the whole world has intensified many fold in this time and this has led to increased imperialist manoeuvring.

This has led to the intensification of antagonisms between imperialist powers and between imperialist powers and others. After 2000, we have seen wars upon wars unleashed by imperialist powers in many parts of the world on the thinnest of pretexts. It is amazing to see Patnaik maintain that these wars have nothing to do with imperialism. His claim that imperialist rivalries have muted down and do not express themselves in wars ‘even by proxy’ is downright laughable in the face of prolonged conflicts in Syria with different imperialist blocs adopting different tactics, fighting for different results and supporting mutually opposed parties. At least on some occasions, the war in Syria has threatened to spill over into a war between some of the imperialist backers (as when the Russian Sukhoi jet was shot down by Turkey).

Patnaik’s newly found support of Kautskyan ‘ultra-imperialism’ conveniently forgets two things. One, that the wars that the united imperialism is currently waging against the third world is itself an expression of deep rooted contradictions of monopoly capitalism. Patnaik uses all the ingenuity of an academician to divorce such wars from imperialism by noting that they do not express inter-imperialist rivalries. Even if, for the sake of argument, we concede that finance capital has put an end to the urge to repartition the world, it is very clear that it has failed conclusively to put an end to contradictions that breed imperialist war. Wars continue to be waged, killing millions, decimating whole countries and converting them into heaps of rubble.

Blood of innocents drip from the profits that keep the capitalist ruling class stuttering along. These contradictions of monopoly capitalism which the imperialist powers look to surmount through imperialist wars can, in reality be ended only with the advent of the next higher stage of human history which is socialism. This calls for the organisation and struggle of the world working class in the spirit of the actuality of revolution; it is to escape this conclusion that Patnaik divorces these wars from imperialism27. Two, in keeping with his reformist orientation, Patnaik forgets the real spirit behind Lenin’s assertion that inter-imperialist conflicts are unavoidable in monopoly stage of capitalism. According to Lenin, what are the reasons that necessitate such conflicts? Can they be avoided forever by ‘inter-imperialist’ alliances, as Patnaik maintains? Lenin answers these questions in the context of early 20th century, thus28

Let us assume that all the imperialist countries conclude an alliance for the peaceful ‘division’ of these parts of Asia; this alliance would be an alliance of ‘internationally united finance capital’… We ask, is it ‘conceivable’, … that such alliances would be more than temporary, that they would eliminate friction, conflicts and struggle in every possible form? The question has only to be presented clearly for any other than a negative answer to be impossible. This is because the only conceivable basis under capitalism for the division of spheres of influence, interests, colonies etc., is the calculation of the strength of those participating, their general economic, financial, military strength etc. And the strength of these participants in the division does not change to an equal degree, for the even development of … countries is impossible under capitalism.

Any change in the relative strengths of the participating countries necessitates a re-division which is sure to lead to conflicts. This is the reason given by Lenin for the volatile nature of inter-imperialist truce. It is true that the hegemony of finance capital has made the direct administration of countries by imperialist powers unnecessary. But, each imperialist power is keen to make sure that the ruling class of the third world country act in strict accordance to the imperialist consensus and that they orient their policies and practices in a way that a) facilitates the imperialist plunder of its resources and b) favours this imperialist power in accordance to its relative strength vis-à-vis others. We have already seen that wars can arise if any country is unwilling to satisfy the first condition. Such wars will most probably be waged between ‘united’ imperialisms and that country.

Patnaik concedes that such wars are possible but refuses to see their connection to imperialism. But that is not all. The second point also can be the source of inter-imperialist rivalries and wars as we see that the relative strengths of imperialist powers are subject to change with even the superiority of US fast eroding. Any such realignment in the relative strengths of rival imperialisms can still have a direct impact which may lead to conflicts. They may start as domestic wars between proxy groups inside the country but can easily spill over to inter imperialist-conflicts, even if carried out in foreign territory. This is especially so in times of overall capitalist crisis wherein all the imperialist powers are reeling from its effect and are in the desperate lookout for a larger portion of the pie.

A routine argument advanced against the chance of wars is that current imperialism, characterised by the absence of direct administration of foreign territories by imperialist powers and dependent on the all-pervasive nature of finance capital, cannot lead to inter-imperialist conflicts as the players (large corporations) are not rooted in any country and have operations across the globe. So, individual states will not take up the struggles between these corporations and will only be interested in facilitating operational freedom and ‘right to exploitation’ for them across the globe. This will be made sure by the ‘united’ imperialist bloc. Such a view arises from a basic misreading of the situation. As Chris Harman remarks29

… the capitals today, far from not needing states, require them as much as –if not more than – ever before. … The internationalisation of firms’ operations, far from leading to less dependence on state support, increases it in one important respect. They need protection for their global interests. … There is no world state to undertake such tasks. And so the power of any national state to force others to respect the interests of capitals based within it has become more important, if not less. … All are dependent upon “their” states to persuade other states to let them get their way.

As far as capitalist ruling class is concerned, war is the most persuasive way to persuade. The roots of the globetrotting multinational giants are still firmly entrenched in a particular state and they retain extremely close relations with its political elite. A look at Hillary Clinton’s aggressive lobbying for Walmart’s entry into Indian retail market is a case in point30. Thus, to expect the international reach of finance capital to mute inter-imperialist rivalry is to miss the point. As Harman points out

The giant company does not end its link with the state, but rather multiplies the number of states – and national capitalist networks – to which it is linked. … The successor to state capitalism of the mid-20th century has not been some non-state capitalism but rather a system in which capitals rely on “their” state as much as ever, but try to spread beyond it to form links with capitals tied to other states. In the process, the system as a whole has become more chaotic.

This chaotic nature, very much in keeping with capitalism’s basic structure, does not rule out inter-imperialist rivalries but broadens and intensifies it.

With his fantasies on the ‘muting of imperialist rivalries’, Patnaik is only repeating Kautsky. As Lenin pointed out31

… ‘inter-imperialist’ or ‘ultra-imperialist’ alliances, no matter what form they may assume, whether of one imperialist coalition against another, or of a general alliance embracing all the imperialist powers, are inevitably nothing more than a ‘truce’ in periods between wars. Peaceful alliances prepare the ground for wars, and in their turn grow out of wars; the one conditions the other, producing alternate forms of peaceful and non-peaceful struggle on one and the same basis of imperialist realisations and relations within world economics and world politics. … over-wise Kautsky separates one link of a chain from another, separates the present peaceful alliance of all the powers … from the non-peaceful conflict of tomorrow. … Instead of showing the living connection between periods of imperialist peace and periods of imperialist war, Kautsky presents the workers with a lifeless abstraction in order to reconcile them to their lifeless leaders.

Patnaik proclaims that the era of imperialist rivalries are over and with it has ended the possibility of imperialist wars. He then alludes that social revolutions are impossible without imperialist wars and that they are non-imminent. As, according to him, the Leninist conjuncture is based on the premise of imminence of revolution, Patnaik concludes that Leninist conjuncture has been superseded. He advises the left to let go off Lenin and to chart an alternate path based on alliances and compromises. At the time of the biggest post war capitalist crisis, at a time when Indian working class is once again showing signs of regaining its vitality, he advocates strict non-revolutionary politics. All this to justify Indian social democracy’s opportunistic and regressive alliances with outright reactionary parties32. Patnaik is thus donning the role of an Indian Kautsky.

It is important to note that Patnaik reduces Lenin’s rich ideas on imperialism as the highest stage of capitalism to inter-imperialist rivalries alone. This is done so that the present apparent truce between imperialist powers can be made a pretext to argue that Leninist conjuncture is no more valid. But we have to appreciate that Lenin’s critical approach to imperialism is based broadly on three important points out of which the inevitability of wars is one. Patnaik make no effort to engage with the other two points because that will make the topicality of Lenin’s analysis clear to the readers. First, what was the primary aspect of Lenin’s critique of imperialism? Was it that it breeds war? No. Though it was very important, it was not the primary aspect that convinced Lenin that social revolution is the only way out of imperialist phase. According to Lenin33, “If it were necessary to give the briefest possible definition of imperialism we should have to say that imperialism is the monopoly stage of capitalism”, a stage in which capitalism has outgrown all its progressive potential and is in a state of decay. “Monopolies, oligarchy, the striving for domination and not freedom, the exploitation of an increasing number of small or weak nations by a handful of the richest or more powerful nations – all these have given birth to these distinctive characteristics of imperialism which compel us to define it as parasitic or decaying capitalism”, declared Lenin. These words can be used verbatim to define the age in which we live now. Lenin’s definition of imperialism as ‘moribund capitalism’ retain their exact literal meaning now. The progressive phase of capitalism was connected with the age of free competition which had made necessary social relations based on freedom and democracy.

But, in Neil Harding’s words34, Lenin saw that, “The extinction of free competition signifies the end of the essential progressive role of capitalism in history.” Freedom and democracy are under vicious attack in one region of the world after another because they are not compatible with the imperialist stage of capitalism35. Capitalism, in its imperialist stage, has exhausted all its progressive potential, it is a ‘zombie’ now and has nothing to offer to mankind. This is the real incentive behind the Leninist call that the era of social revolutions has arrived. This is why Lenin maintained that the practical alternative to imperialism cannot be an illusionary return to free competition or formal democracy, but an advance to socialism. It is this revolutionary conclusion that Patnaik tries to hide by not invoking this dimension of the Leninist critique of imperialism. Instead, he shamelessly vulgarises Lenin’s thought and asserts that as there are no imperialist wars now, we ought to go back to ‘strengthening democracy’!

But a revolutionary advance is not something which can be conjured up at will. The decay of capitalism in its imperialist phase is one thing, but if this is to be translated into a revolutionary advance, the question of maturity of objective conditions required for such a transition will have to be examined. This is where Lenin offers his second crucial insight on imperialism which Patnaik, evidently, never considers important to mention. Lenin clearly locates the place of imperialism in history36

We have seen that in its economic essence imperialism is monopoly capitalism. This in itself determines its place in history, for monopoly that grows out of the soil of free competition, and precisely out of free competition is the transition from capitalist system to a higher socio-economic order.

In the last chapter of his ‘Imperialism’ titled ‘The place of imperialism in history’, Lenin unambiguously asserts that imperialism leads to the maturing of objective conditions for the transition to a higher stage of human history. As Harding remarks

Lenin’s fundamental premise was that capitalism had changed in nature. From being competitive, thrusting and progressive, it had become monopolistic, passive and degenerate. At the same time, however, finance capital had carried the socialisation of productive process to its ultimate extent and had erected, in the banks, cartels and trusts, mechanisms through which social control of production and distribution could easily be achieved. The obverse of the degenerate, parasitic side of imperialism was that it had finally established the objective basis for an advance to socialism in all the industrially developed nations.

This is the most crucial of Lenin’s insights on imperialism. This objective basis that Lenin pointed to have become ten times more elaborate and deep in our time of crass imperialism. Lenin offers a striking graphical description of the development of socialisation of production and its effect on the social relations of production

When a big enterprise assumes gigantic proportions, and, on the basis of an exact computation of mass data, organises according to plan the supply of primary raw materials to the extent of two-thirds, or three-fourths, of all that is necessary for tens of millions of people; when the raw materials are transported in a systematic and organised manner to the most suitable places of production, sometimes situated hundreds or thousands of miles from each other; when a single centre directs all the consecutive stages of processing the material right up to the manufacture of numerous varieties of finished articles; when these products are distributed according to a single plan among tens and hundreds of millions of consumers (the marketing of oil in America and Germany by the American oil trust)—then it becomes evident that we have socialisation of production,… that private economic and private property relations constitute a shell which no longer fits its contents, a shell which must inevitably decay if its removal is artificially delayed, a shell which may remain in a state of decay for a fairly long period (if, at the worst, the cure of the opportunist abscess is protracted), but which will inevitably be removed.

Remember that Lenin wrote this down 100 years ago, decades before the advent of computers. Now, the above said processes happen on an infinitely wider, quicker and more efficient scale. Thus monopolistic capitalism has clearly created all the necessary objective conditions for transition to a higher mode of production. But Patnaik’s reformist eye sees none of these. It perceives only one thing, the absence of imperialist wars. This is more than enough for him to ‘rule out revolution’ and to proclaim the demise of Leninism. Academic vision is a remarkable thing; with great dexterity, it selectively highlights that ONE thing which serves its purpose – that of eternal postponement of revolution.

As Harding remarks about Patnaik’s reformist European friends, “… these host of permanent postponers of revolution, shut their eyes to the evident facts and continue their endless vigil for the objective conditions to mature.”

Lenin admonished such petty bourgeois theorists

They picture socialism as some remote, unknown and dim future. But socialism is now gazing at us from all the windows of modern capitalism; socialism is outlined directly, practically, by every important measure that constitute a forward step on the basis of this modern capitalism.

So the crux of the Leninist argument on imperialism is this: Imperialism which is the moribund stage of capitalism, make social revolution a necessity. The ripening of objective conditions brought about by imperialism makes social revolution a possibility. Imperialist wars bred by contradictions in monopoly capitalism, makes social revolution inescapable. The difference between revolutionary Lenin and reformist Patnaik is very clear now. The ‘Patnaik conjuncture’ says that the left need act with a revolutionary orientation only once the revolution becomes inescapable.

 It further contends that for revolution to become imminent, imperialist war is a necessary pre-requisite. As we don’t have wars, no revolutionary imminence and hence no need for a revolutionary left. How simple and how ridiculous! Lenin, ‘the embodiment of revolutionary readiness’, instead views the above three stages in its totality. The first two ensure that revolution becomes a practical possibility, an actuality. Even in the absence of objective conditions which make it inescapable, Lenin urges the vanguard to steadily develop the class consciousness of the working class, to impress upon them the necessity and possibility of revolution. As Lenin incessantly repeated37, the revolutionary duty of the vanguard is to educate the toiling class on “… the need for, and the urgency and inevitability of, the revolution.”

When Patnaik ensures the working class that revolution is not on the agenda at all and ‘invents’ reasons to prove it, Lenin drums into them the inevitability of revolution; when Patnaik sings them lullabies, Lenin prevents them from dozing off by whipping them with hard truth. Lenin himself vividly captures this difference38: “… a revolutionary Marxist differs from the philistine and petty bourgeois by his ability to preach to the uneducated masses that the maturing revolution is necessary, to prove that it is inevitable, to explain its benefits to the people and to prepare the proletariat and all working and exploited people for it”, even when the revolution is not imminent and is only a possibility. It is clear that the Patnaik’s call to the left to remain non-revolutionary makes him, in Lenin’s words, a first rate petty bourgeois philistine.

Does Marxism – Leninism agree with the Patnaik conjuncture which makes inter-imperialist conflict a necessary pre-requisite for imminence of revolution? Not at all. Imperialist wars make revolution inescapable, but it is not, by any means, the only scenario which makes it inevitable. In Russia, imperialist war acted as the immediate cause of revolution, but it takes an academic to turn this around and claim that revolution cannot be triggered by anything but imperialist war. This is very clear, for example, in Lenin’s opinion about England hh39

We cannot tell—no one can tell in advance—how soon a real proletarian revolution will flare up there, and what immediate cause will most serve to rouse, kindle, and impel into the struggle the very wide masses, who are still dormant. … It is possible that the breach will be forced, the ice broken, by a parliamentary crisis, or by a crisis arising from colonial and imperialist contradictions, which are hopelessly entangled and are becoming increasingly painful and acute, or perhaps by some third cause, etc.

It is crystal clear that Lenin considers imperialist crisis to be one among many possible ‘triggers’ of revolution, but not as the only one. Patnaik bases the imminence of revolution on imperialist war because his petty bourgeois analysis assures him that imperialism has outgrown inter-imperialist conflicts. He picks that pre-requisite for revolution which, he thinks, will surely not be satisfied. It is a school boy trick aimed at eternal postponement of the revolutionary question.


‘Patnaik conjuncture’ identifies imperialist war as the necessary condition of imminence of revolution, Leninism recognises it as one of the many causes that can precipitate a revolutionary situation. Patnaik asserts that imminence of revolution, brought about by war, is the basis of Leninist conjuncture. The fact is that the basis of Leninist conjuncture is actuality of revolution. Patnaik urges the Indian left to embrace opportunist, non-revolutionary, alliance based politics when revolution is non-imminent. Lenin urges the vanguard to embody the dialectical union between day-to-day work and final revolutionary aim and thus to retain revolutionary orientation at all times.

Patnaik embraces the Kautskyst theory of ‘ultra-imperialism’ and makes it the basis for eternal postponement of revolution. Leninism reveals the contradictions and antagonisms of crass imperialism and makes them the basis of revolutionary struggles. Status quo is Patnaik’s mantra; in the midst of one of the deepest capitalist crisis, he wants the proletariat to hide behind parliamentary alliances. In an era of spontaneously exploding workers’ struggles, he wants the left to remain strictly non-revolutionary.

If Patnaik treads this reformist path any longer, history will confer to him the same first name that it gave Kautsky – renegade.


[1]: Lenin, Imperialism, the highest stage of capitalism, Collected Works, Vol. 22.
[2]:Prabhat Patnaik, Things that the left needs to do right, The Hindu, 24 May, 2016.
[3]:Georg Lukacs, Lenin – A study on the unity of his thought, Verso, 2009.
[5]:V I Lenin, Platform of reformists and platform of social-democrats, Complete Works of Lenin, Vol. 18.
[6]:It has, of course, to be kept in mind that Lenin uses the word ‘social-democrats’ in completely different senses prior to and after 1914. Before 1914, it loosely translates into ‘communists’ and after, it denotes the opportunists of second international.
[7]:“… neither Marx nor Lenin ever thought of the actuality of proletarian revolution and its aims as being readily realisable at any given moment”, says Lukacs.
[8]:Of course, as Engels also stressed, mature capitalism could not have, by itself produced the theory of proletarian revolution, it needed the insight of a genius to pick this up and formulate it.
[9]:Georg Lukacs, Lenin – A study on the unity of his thought, Verso, 2009.
[11]:Neil Harding, Lenin’s political thought, Vol. 1 & 2, Haymarket Books, Chicago, 1983.
[12]:History tells us that this petty bourgeois contingent always includes social democrats and reformists, like centrists and pacifists in Germany in 1914, Mensheviks in Russia in 1917 and parliamentary left in India now.
[13]:Neil Harding, Lenin’s political thought, Vol. 2, Haymarket Books, Chicago, 1983.
[14]:Lenin, Left-wing communism, An infantile disorder, Collected Works, Vol. 31.
[15]:“Only the most ignorant people can close their eyes to the bourgeois nature of the democratic revolution that is now taking place”, wrote Lenin.
[16]:Lenin’s stand is detailed in his 1905 pamphlet Two tactics of social democracy in the democratic revolution, Collected Works, Vol. 9. All the quotes in this para are from this pamphlet.
[17]:Where they exist, they do so in the form of relatively small groups which, in spite of their gargantuan effort, are unable to exert wide influence.
[18]:Charles Post, What is left of Leninism, Socialist Register 2013, The Merlin Press, London, 2012.
[19]:Chris Harman, Zombie capitalism, Haymarket Books, Chicago, 2009.
[20]:This is the only option that the JNU ‘left’ contingent has to offer against neo-liberalism too, they advocate the ‘return to state funding’ as a magic wand to solve all the problems, see the conclusions of Chadrasekhar and Ghosh, The market that failed.
[21]:Prabhat Patnaik, Things that the left needs to do right, The Hindu, 24 May, 2016.
[22]:Exemplified by a quote generally credited to Mao: “Everything under heaven is in utter chaos; the situation is excellent”.
[23]:Historians like Robert Service sees sheer luck at play here along with Lenin’s genius in real-politik.
[24]:Prabhat Patnaik, Things that the left needs to do right, The Hindu, 24 May, 2016.
[25]:Lenin, Imperialism, the highest stage of capitalism, Collected Works, Vol. 22.
[26]:Prabhat Patnaik, Introduction to ‘Imperialism, The highest stage of capitalism’, Left Word, New Delhi, 2000. [27]:The Indian social democracy, under the ideological stewardship of thinkers like Patnaik, maintains that the way out of imperialism is ‘economic nationalism’ and not socialism; i.e., de-linking from globalization and going back to the ‘welfare state’. I had talked about this petty bourgeois nostalgia for state funding in an earlier essay, ‘Planning commission – Right’s intention, left’s reaction and the way forward’, which is available here:
[28]:Lenin, Imperialism, the highest stage of capitalism, Collected Works, Vol. 22.
[29]:Chris Harman, Zombie capitalism, Haymarket Books, Chicago, 2009.
[30]:P. Sainath, Walmart’s (and Hillary’s) Indian invasion,, December 14, 2011.
[31]:Lenin, Imperialism, the highest stage of capitalism, Collected Works, Vol. 22.
[32]:In Tamilnadu, an alliance was assembled with Vijaykanth as its Chief Ministerial candidate!
[33]:Lenin, Imperialism, the highest stage of capitalism, Collected Works, Vol. 22
[34]:Neil Harding, Lenin’s political thought, Vol. 2, Haymarket Books, Chicago, 1983.
[35]:It is for this reason that Patnaik’s call, in his essay, to go back to ‘democracy’ becomes a fantasy. We shall see this in detail in another forthcoming essay.
[36]:Lenin, Imperialism, the highest stage of capitalism, Collected Works, Vol. 22.
[37]:Lenin, Platform of reformists and platform of social democrats, Collected Works, Vol. 18.
[38]:Lenin, Proletarian revolution and renegade Kautsky, Collected Works, Collected Works, Vol. 28.
[39]:Lenin, Left wing communism, An infantile disorder, Collected Works, Vol. 31.