Tirana, the 10th of March, 1997.
Dear comrade Ludo Martens,
I have been informed of the closed-session international seminar that has been held in Brussels for some years, as part of the unification of the world communist movement, with the participation of a large number of communist parties from all over the world representing different tendencies. I have received with pleasure the invitation of the Workers' Party of Belgium and its respected president, comrade Ludo Martens, asking me to participate in this year's seminar whose important theme will be: "The road of the October Revolution, the road for the workers' liberation". Not being sure to be able to participate, i would like to contribute a few simple preliminary remarks that I hope will be well understood by all the comrades and friends.
I would like to mention as I start this letter that the commemoration of the Great October Revolution, most particularly during the year of its 80th anniversary, deserves to be celebrated all over the world by all communists and progressives.
Marxism was born 150 years ago as the result of the social and economic conditions, the development of the sciences of nature and theoretical research. Before the appearance of Marxism, the proletariat's movements, such as the Chartist movement in England and the uprisings in France (Lyon) and Germany, were spontaneous and without clear political objectives.
Marx and Engels were the first to understand the necessity of giving scientific arguments to sustain the proletariat's struggle against the bourgeoisie and its organization in an independent, revolutionary political party.
Marx and Engels founded scientific communism. Their brilliant ideas were formulated in the Manifesto of the Communist Party. Lenin and Stalin continued and further enriched the monumental works of Marx and Engels. This led in Russia, 70 years after the birth of Marxism,to the salvo's of the Aurora and the October Revolution, the first proletarian revolution. This revolution initiated the final downfall of capitalism. The ideas and the red flags of the October Revolution have become a leading light that has shown the way for the exploited and oppressed masses of the world, leading towards the socialist world system. The great revolution opened wide horizons but the counter-revolution has also led to serious setbacks. The Khrushchevian counter-revolution, under colours of revisionism, has brought socialism to destruction in the land of the Soviets. This counter-revolution was not only carried out against one person or a group of people, but against Marxism-Leninism, against the October Revolution, against the revolutions of the peoples who are striving for freedom, democracy and socialism.
Restoration of capitalism in the Soviet Union and the Soviet Union's destruction, as well as the overthrow of socialism in the East European countries are great tragedies, that are rooted more particularly in revisionism. This is why when one talks today about the October Revolution one cannot keep silent about the revisionist treason that led to the destruction and the disappearance of the socialist camp. To achieve this goal, world capitalism has worked energetically. But if communism has lost a battle, it has not lost the war.
I agree with the platform that was made public at the Brussels Seminars for the defense of Marxism-Leninism and the struggle against revisionism and opportunism.
I was not present during these seminaries and I do not have sufficient knowledge of how the communists of different parties and countries have treated this question.
I believe that the way this question is approached is of fundamental importance. We communists know well that communism has been attacked while claiming adherence to it. Nobody should forget nor deny that Khrushchev himself paid lip service to Marxism-Leninism, all the while attacking it in actual practice, because he was fundamentally an anti-Marxist and an anti-Leninist.
But if we communists want to defend ourselves in these matters, we must organise a debate on this problem, in which the communists openly and honestly expose their views, with the major aim of proceeding toward the unification of the international communist movement, which is so necessary.
The slogan of the Manifesto of the Communist Party was: "Proletarians of all countries, unite!". This slogan must be delivered to all of humanity, surging from the consciousness of the proletarian communists: "Communists of all countries, unite!"
In my opinion only the communists, united the world over in the big party of the
proletariat, will be the locomotive to lead the train of humanity to people's democracy, socialism and communism. I do not think that this unity will come about easily nor from one day to the other. This unity must be obtained on a healthy basis, bereft of all opportunism, liberalism and dogmatism.
it has been a tradition that in the Brussels seminar parties supporting the line of Mao Zedong and others supporting the line of Enver Hoxha take part. Other participating parties get their inspiration from the Cuban revolution and Che Guevara, while still others identify themselves as independent. It is but natural that different parties have different opinions on the different communist leaders and revolutionaries, but it is necessary, after debate conducted in a scientific manner, to arrive at conclusions and to surmount prejudices and sentiments. Before glorifying or denigrating communist leaders, they should be read and their writings confronted with the historical truth.
Forty years ago, for example, the leader of the Workers' Party of Albania, Enver Hoxha, unmasked Khrushchev's treason. At that moment, many parties did not believe in the truth of what Enver Hoxha said or did not have the courage to admit he was right and they remained under Khrushchev's tutelage. But a few parties understood the treason and followed Enver Hoxha's political line. What did Enver Hoxha then predict? He predicted, for example, that the Soviet Union was going to be dismantled. Several communist leaders then thought that this prediction was the fantasy of a sick mind. But what is the historical truth? We now know that history has validated the thesis of the dismantling of the socialist camp. I believe that this is the way one must take stock of the lives and works of the communist and revolutionary leaders. I have cited the example above not because I want to analyze in this letter the life and work of comrade Enver Hoxha, nor to deny the democratic and revolutionary work of other leaders, but only to say that now has come the time when analysis, debates, opinions must be developed on the basis of facts, facts that have now been confirmed by history.
If I am not mistaken, there exist in India four Marxist-Leninist parties, with four different tendencies. One is inspired by Enver Hoxha, the other by Mao Zedong, another by the ex-USSR and the fourth by the political line of the Cuban revolution.
Marxist-Leninist science is one and only one. It is most certainly a science that continually enriches itself. If one wishes to judge wisely those who have enriched or are enriching this science this should be done by considering all things in the unerring mirror of Marxism-Leninism. The ancient Roman expression "Let us give to Cesar what belongs to Cesar" should make us understand that we must give each leader the place he deserves. What was good in Rosa Luxemburg we cannot pretend that it vas wrong, and the same for Che Guevara.
The sculptor who sculpted the monument of the communist and revolutionary leaders of each country and continent, reminds us of the fact that we are all mortal, only Marxism-Leninism is immortal. Marxism-Leninism is our compass and we will not be misled when we use this compass to orientate ourselves. It is bright as the sun's light and pure as bread. George Dimitrov, Ernst Thaelmann, Klement Gottwald and others were devoted communist fighters, they have revolutionary biographies and when these biographies are studied and evaluated, they will guide us on the road of true Marxism-Leninism.
Chairman Mao Zedong was a great revolutionary leader for the liberation of China, the legendary chief of the army, the founder of the People's Republic of China. Chairman Mao Zedong did a great deal for the Chinese people and he was also a friend of the Albanian people. Enver Hoxha nevertheless expressed principled ideological contradictions at different moments regarding Chairman Mao Zedong.
This is quite normal in the life and work of communist leaders. It is how things have happened during the whole history of Marxism. Whether the ideological debates between communist leaders were right or wrong, only history will judge, based on Marxism-Leninism. An objective, scientific judgment, made without passion, also leads to ideological unity. Humanity is confronted with great problems that only the united fist of the working class and the people can wipe off the face of the earth.
I personally feel that it is very positive that internationalism has its place in the Brussels Seminar. Proletarian internationalism combines and unites the specific national interests of each country with the international ones.
We now have a century-long experience and history of proletarian internationalism. The flag-bearer of this internationalism was the homeland of Lenin. I feel that small Albania, under the leadership of Enver Hoxha, has done its duty as far as proletarian internationalism is concerned.
Whether this work has been perfect or not, like the David of Michelangelo, may be debated upon, but it is doubtless that it has done everything, with all its strength, to accomplish this great task. I do not intend to analyze the way in which small Albania did its international proletarian duty, in the interest of the international communist movement, because it is a vast theme, but I wish to express openly and sincerely, fraternally, that the international communist movement has not, so far, done its duty towards small Albania, when it was attacked and destroyed by traitors inside the country and by the international bourgeoisie. This is a shame for the communist movement in Europe and all over the world.
We were upheld by the oppressed peoples and the genuine communists all over the world. For this heroic stance we have been heavily punished, like no other country in the world. When the Albanian citadel finally fell, it would have been admirable and honorable for the Russian communists to have demonstrated on the Kremlin Square in a spirit of solidarity with Albania and the Albanian people, small but heroic, on whom many tragedies have fallen. But the Russian communists did not do so. It is a shame for the Russian communists. They have erred because of their great-nation chauvinism, while a small people was being crushed by barbarism.
I know and respect comrade Nina Andreeva and her comrades, but this does not mean that I must not express my doubts concerning the general attitude of the Russian communists towards Albania. Besides them there are also people, occupying high positions, of a so-called Union of the Communist Parties of Russia who concerning Albania speak with the language of those who know nothing about Albania, or who know but prefer to speak in Khrushchev's language. We, Albanians, know Marxism-Leninism better than the Russians, not because we are more intelligent than them but because we have read Lenin and we have learned Lenin's simplicity. I still have the hope that the Russian communists also will learn from Lenin's simplicity. All must learn from Lenin's simplicity. All must learn from Lenin's internationalism. If not we would be communists in name only.
You, Comrade Ludo Martens, have written to me saying that you want to propose the launching of a campaign of solidarity with the Communist Party of Albania. In the name of the Communist Party of Albania, I thank you and all comrades who show their spirit of solidarity with the Albanian communists, who are living critical moments.
I feel that independent of the different currents, it is the human duty of the 60 parties that will be present in Brussels and who are united in the anti-capitalist front to let their voices be heard in protest against the internal and external forces that have caused the Albanians to suffer a tragedy without precedent in the history of this century.
Small Albania was considered by the capitalist spheres in Europe and all over the world to be the bastion of socialism and the defense of communism, it is by uniting their forces that they have set Albania 100 years back, working to discredit socialism as an economic and social system.
I think that it would be interesting for each communist and democratic revolutionary party to organize in the future a special meeting concerning Albania. If this would be considered as possible, I would be ready and most pleased to expose the truth regarding socialism and capitalism in Albania. I think that many things deserve to be explained regarding Albania, because the communists and democratic revolutionaries do not know enough concerning this reality.
This year, a spontaneous popular revolution has erupted. I think that it is interesting to make this spontaneous revolution known to all the progressive forces. The Albanian people have opened the storehouses and weapons stockrooms, they have taken the cannons, the planes, the war ships, the tanks and they have carried out an armed uprising. The army, in the classical sense of the term, no longer exists. Millions of weapons are in the people's hands.
This revolution and the factors that provoked it cannot be explained in a few words. If the communist and democratic progressive parties that are coming to Brussels express interest for my proposition, I will be, as I already mentioned, most ready to give a conference on socialism, the restoration of capitalism and the spontaneous popular revolution that has erupted in Albania this year. Beforehand, one may say that even if all of Europe had Shakespeare's talent, it would still be difficult to explain the complete extent and scope of the Albanian tragedy during the ten last years of this century.
I also think that it would be an honor for the assembly that will be held in Brussels from the 2nd to the 4th of May to publish a resolution or a declaration of solidarity with the Albanian people and the Communist Party of Albania. A resolution signed by all the parties would be a humanitarian act for the people that have been and still are the friends of all the peoples of the world.
The communist parties have been outlawed by the fascists.
In concluding this short letter, I would like to stress that almost all today's communist and democratic progressive parties have to work under the conditions of capitalism.
Some of them have the great mission to struggle for the proletarian revolution and some others for the democratic revolution and for anti-imperialist liberation. The revolution's content must be examined taking into account the conditions of its development.
On this very wide road, there are specific tasks but also common ones. To realize these common tasks, contacts between parties, their common struggle against opportunism and revisionism, learning to know their different positions, the debates in a comradely spirit are certainly necessary.
In case different parties have ideological differences on one or the other question, this can gradually be worked out by restoring confidence in order to serve humanity's highest ideals, but without restoring opportunism. Revisionism and opportunism have only brought us suffering and tragedy, this is why the more we cast aside these sicknesses and the more we heal from them, the better it will be.
The contacts between parties, the discussions and the links between them must certainly be carried out on a basis of equality and sincerity. Each Party has its identity and its individuality, its practical and ideological independence, its internal problems.
If we achieve unity of understanding as concerns the international tasks of the working class, cooperation in common actions will result in the only international strength that consistently defends the revolution and world socialism.
Our objective was and still is to serve the revolution and socialism, the strengthening of the international communist Marxist-Leninist movement. With Marxism-Leninism and revolution as guidelines, we advance toward unity, while revisionism and counter-revolution lead to division and downfall. Each communist and convinced democrat has the task to add his contribution to the citadel of the revolutionary movement's unity. He who decides otherwise is condemned by history.
Both as a communist and as a citizen, I wish all those who are assembled this year in Brussels to debate upon the October Revolution good work and success, unity of thought for the good of the revolution and the peoples.
The era we are living in needs communists and democrats that are like torches that never burn out, not candles that melt fast. At the service of our noble ideals, let us allow these candles to melt while always remaining torches.
I salute you from a country that is still in revolution, a country that has suffered a catastrophe.
I express the conviction that this meeting will also condemn the Albanian catastrophe and those who are responsible for it. I finish this letter with the words Written by the Brazilian communist leader Joao Amazonas some years ago: "A great event has rocked the regime of the bourgeoisie on November 7, 1917...".
Long live the revolutionaries of the world!
Glory to Marxism-Leninism!
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