From En Marcha
Central Organ of the Marxist-Leninist Communist Party of Ecuador
August 13-20, 1998

Declaration of the Second International Seminar: "Problems of the Revolution in Latin America"

The Parties and Organizations taking part in the Second International Seminar "Problems of the Revolution in Latin America," in a fraternal and enthusiastic atmosphere, held a broad and exhaustive discussion of the proposed agenda: "Imperialism: its nature and present manifestations," and "The Communist Manifesto, its ideas, lessons and repercussion on the struggle of the proletariat and the peoples" and, on this basis we have put forth to Latin America and the world the following criteria:

On Imperialism

1. We are living in the era of imperialism and proletarian revolutions. The expressions of globalization, neo-liberalism, the re-colonization of the world, in no way mean a new stage in the development of society; on the contrary, they reaffirm the fundamental elements by which Lenin characterized this phase as decadent and the final one in capitalist development. Imperialism has not changed its rapacious and aggressive nature; it persists in and increases the export of capital, the predominance of finance and monopoly capital, the super-exploitation of the labor power of the proletariat and the looting of the wealth of our countries, the contention over markets and spheres of influence, the unequal development of the capitalist countries, etc.

2. Globalization demands a new international division of labor, a new division of the world and of markets, it tries to confront the crisis of capitalism with the imposition of a series of measures which would consolidate a single international market, in which there is full freedom for the investment and export of monopoly capital, seeking to eliminate national barriers, and attacking the sovereignty and independence of nations and peoples, affirming the domination of the large monopolies. The national economies are, now, more dependent than ever, science and technology are used by the great powers and serve to accentuate their domination over other countries.

Together with this process, the mechanisms of political domination are being strengthened. These are the imperialist, particularly the U.S., embassies, the international organs, the WTO [World Trade Organization], the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the great powers such as the United States, Japan, England, Germany, France, Italy, Canada and Russia, who openly command the policies which are applied docilely by the ruling classes of our countries.

3. Globalization, as the expression of imperialism, has not eliminated inter-imperialist contention; on the contrary, it has deepened it; the struggle for world hegemony, the contention over markets and spheres of influence, continues; new regional and local conflicts are taking place. The threat of war still exists; it is more and more clear that finance capital is concentrated in imperialist blocs which collude with one another against the peoples and contend with each other for their own interests.

Neo-liberalism and its politics of privatizations, the so-called modernization of the State, restructuring and the reconversion of the productive apparatus, the flexibilization of labor, form part of this process, they have been applied at different levels and seek to resolve the capitalist crisis to the benefit of finance capital, its allies and its local lackeys.

4. The crises of imperialism are more and more frequent and deeper; they have a structural character and they manifest themselves in financial or stock-market crises; in production, they reverberate immediately on all the economies. They can not be resolved as long as their cause is not eliminated, that is, the increasingly social character of production and the private appropriation of wealth.

Imperialism has not resolved the problems of humanity. The majority of the world's population does not benefit from the wealth that they themselves create; nor from the results of the very rapid development of the productive forces, the scientific and technical revolution has served to accumulate a greater quantity of wealth in the imperialist countries, the difference between developed and dependent capitalist countries has deepened.

Today there are more exploited people. The peoples of Asia, Africa and Latin America are plunged into misery; even in the developed capitalist countries, important segments of the population are deprived of social benefits, at the same time as unemployment increases.

6. Confronted with this situation, the response of the peoples is also showing a new momentum. For us, the ebb in the social struggle, in the actions of the masses, in the revolutionary struggle, has been overcome; we are beginning to see a development of the struggle of the masses, a new upsurge of popular struggle, the blows of the crisis of capitalism are opposed by the mobilization of millions of workers, peasants, youths, women and other popular sectors. In different parts of the world, various governments have been overthrown by popular uprisings, this situation of the peoples has its own dimension, its own characteristics in each country. The facts permit us to foresee a new revolutionary wave.

On the relevance of the Communist Manifesto today

In taking up the theme: "The Communist Manifesto and its Relevance for the Struggle of the Workers and Peoples of Latin America," the parties and organizations taking part in the Second International Seminar affirm that the essential aspects of the doctrine expounded in the Communist Manifesto have renewed importance for the present; they are the foundation of our revolutionary theory and it is our obligation to study, examine, integrate and apply it in the new historic conditions of capitalist development and in the concrete and changing reality of each of our countries.

The theses of the Manifesto were the guide for the triumphant and victorious revolutions of the international proletariat beginning with the October Revolution of 1917 and continuing in the struggles for social and national liberation. Its principles have been expressed in the struggle for the overthrow of colonialism and neo-colonialism, in the fight against imperialism, in the rise of the proletariat as an independent force, they have effect in the arts, culture, science and all manifestations of social life.

The aspects of principle are firm in the Manifesto, they have full relevance for understanding the development of human society, capitalist exploitation and oppression, the class struggle and the need for revolutions of national and social liberation led by the proletariat and its party, the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat and the construction of socialism and communism.

1. The Manifesto teaches us that the existence of social classes and the antagonistic struggle between them is the result of the concrete and historically determined modes of production. In the capitalist system, the contradiction between social production and private appropriation of wealth, by means of the exploitation of labor power converted into a commodity and the extraction of surplus-value, constitute the basis of capitalist accumulation and the antagonism between the fundamental classes: the bourgeoisie and the proletariat.

2. Marx and Engels teach us that since the beginning of the contradiction between the development of the productive forces and the relations of production, there has opened up an era of social revolution. In the words of the Manifesto: "The productive forces at the disposal of society no longer tend to further the development of the conditions of bourgeois property; on the contrary, they have become too powerful for these conditions, by which they are fettered." This scientific law of Marxism has been proven.

3. The social revolution implies the construction of a new society; this historic task corresponds to the leadership of the revolutionary proletariat, its relations to the most advanced forms of production create the conditions to take up this responsibility, the proletarians "have nothing of their own to secure and to fortify; their mission is to destroy all previous securities for, and insurances of, individual property."

4. The bourgeois State must be overthrown by the use of revolutionary violence of the masses, in order to construct over its ashes the socialist State, which can be nothing but the dictatorship of the proletariat, which means democracy for the broadest masses of the workers and dictatorship for the overthrown minority of exploiters.

The revolution demands the ideological and organizational independence of the proletariat and this can only be exercised by means of a political party which is the fundamental guarantee of the social revolution of the proletariat, on the road to the construction of socialism and communism.

6. Marxism, quite the contrary to what the bourgeois ideologists say, is not in crisis, nor is it a dead ideology. The various reactionary formulas for deception, such as the theory of the failure of Marxism, of the end of history, of the rationalization of the market, of chance as basis of social development, globalization and others, together or separately, are proven false by the actual reality that they seek to deny. There is a class struggle, the struggle of the colonial and dependent peoples, inter-imperialist contradictions, a minority which exploits the immense majority of humanity. This is expressed in a reactivation of the popular struggle around the world.

Therefore, it is false that communist thought does not help to interpret the latest developments of production, particularly concerning the scientific-technical revolution.

These advances have not changed the fact that we are living under the capitalist system and, although there have been important changes, these do not mean either the extinction of the proletariat or a new society, as the bourgeois ideologists claim.

7. Socialism has not failed. The experiences in its construction show how a superior society, a period of transition to communism, in which class struggle persists, in this first experience suffered a temporary defeat. This is a zigzag that the revolution is confronting.

8. In the course of these 150 years, the Communist Manifesto has been a guide for the struggle of the workers and peoples for the emancipation of labor and the nations.

Yesterday, inspired by the Manifesto, there arose the first workers' leaders and Marxist organizations in Latin America which carried forward transcendental struggles at the beginning of the century. The Seminar pays homage to these precursors of communism in the region, many of whom furthermore gave examples of the search for the concrete application of Marxism to our realities.

Today, the attitude that one adopts towards the Manifesto is a clear dividing line between revolutionaries and the reformist accommodators to the system.


In the Seminar there were put forward interesting matters related to the fundamental contradictions of this era, such as, in relation to national States, the lessons which arise from the defeats that have taken place in the construction of socialism and about the necessity or not of relying on a common program, among other things, which call upon us to deepen the refection and the debate in order to arrive at common positions in future meetings.

The revolutionaries and the peoples

Those who took part in the Second International Seminar "Problems of the Revolution in Latin America," leftists, revolutionaries, patriots, Marxist-Leninists, from this Continent, are without a doubt, a consistent political expression faced with imperialism and the ruling classes of our countries.

We are revolutionaries who are making efforts to increase our links with the popular masses, with the workers, peasants, teachers, youths, and women who are prepared to carry the struggle to victory. We are inspired by a clear perspective, the struggle for popular power, for the revolution and socialism.

We must make the debate about the problems of the revolution more profound and rigorous. We must continue studying and investigating the nature of Imperialism and its consequences for the life, organization and struggle of the working class and the peoples.

We must carry out an ideological and political offensive which destroys the myth of the invincibility of the imperialist powers, which affirms the capabilities of the peoples and their ability to achieve national and social liberation.

To deepen our political efforts on the road to developing a process of unity of the anti-imperialist forces; to advance in a program of anti-imperialist struggle which strives for the defense of the sovereignty of nations and the free determination of the peoples, a program which unifies our thinking and objectives, which guides the organization and the popular and national combat.

It is clear to us that the struggle against imperialism necessitates unmasking and combating its allies, the local ruling classes, the oligarchies which make it possible. We fully understand the need to draw lines of demarcation with the opportunists and the traitors, the apologists of imperialist domination, those who preach the impotence and uselessness of the struggle.

We fighters for liberty and national independence, the forces of the social revolution, must advance and strengthen the great anti-imperialist front of the workers and the peoples. This front, for now, will sum up the positions, the ideological and political combat, the strike struggle and the street mobilizations, the various expressions of the revolutionary armed struggle throughout the trenches which are being dug in all countries. It must strike the imperialist domination at its very heart, it must confront cultural aggression and national oppression, it must target exploitation. At each time and place the anti-imperialists and patriots express ourselves in combat; our organization and struggle at the same time as it carries out our objectives transforms them into an action of solidarity with all the workers, the fighters, the revolutionaries of the world. Everywhere and always we target imperialism, we struggle for the social emancipation of the workers.

For this purpose we put forward the following:

The mass struggle, its new momentum, requires from a revolutionary leadership that it form the conscious element, the Party. We must make use of every struggle to educate and organize the peoples for the perspective of power, of socialism; it is necessary for revolutionaries to place ourselves at the head of these struggles.

To unite the revolutionaries, the anti-imperialists, the patriots in the tasks of confronting imperialism, requires forms of organization and the perspective of working in an anti-imperialist program.

To call for actions of solidarity with the peoples in struggle, especially with Puerto Rico, Colombia and against the imperialist blockade of Cuba. To support and take as our own the convocation and participation in the Meeting of Trade Unionists which will take place in the Dominican Republic on November 7 and 8, 1998. To contribute to the strengthening of the mass organizations such as CEA, OCLAE and others.

To call for an anti-imperialist day in Latin America and the Caribbean for the respect of human rights, freedom for political prisoners and national sovereignty, in the last week of November; this implies organizing marches, meetings, conferences and other events.

7. To develop a vigorous ideological, political and organizational offensive which spreads the revolutionary theses, Marxism-Leninism and opposes the various current bourgeois theories. This implies defending and developing the ideas of Marx, Engels and other revolutionaries in the world and Latin America.

The objective of this campaign is to unite the revolutionary ideas with the great masses and their daily struggle.

8. The organizations taking part in this Second International Seminar ourselves call for the holding of the Third International Seminar in the city of Quito, in one year, in which we commit ourselves to participate and to work for the participation of other organizations.

Quito, July 31, 1998

Raymon Royer
Marxist-Leninist Organization of the Antilles

Jorge Rocha
Revolutionary Communist Party (Argentina)

Carlos López
Colombian Communist Party

Ricardo Suárez
Communist Party of Colombia (ML)

Alfredo Holguín
Communist Youth of Colombia

Gerardo Benavidez
Communist Party of Peru (Red Fatherland)

Manuel Salazar
Communist Party of Labor (Dominican Republic)

Blas Vargas
Communist Party of Labor (Dominican Republic)

Carlos Hermoso Conde
Red Flag Party of Venezuela

Ciro Guzmán Aldaz
Democratic Popular Movement (Ecuador)

Oswaldo Palacios
Marxist Leninist Communist Party of Ecuador

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