Originally published in The Leninist No.85 (cover) December 23 1989. Available on our archive here
The Fourth Conference of the Leninists of the CPGB has taken place.
The conference was held at a particularly difficult time for both communists and the working class internationally. Our class enemies are full of smug self satisfaction. With the rise of Gorbachevism there is a 1914 type general crisis of bureaucratic socialism and the ‘official’ world communist movement is heading towards the liquidationist abyss. At the same time, though, far from the West’s self declared victory in the Cold War ending capitalism’s antagonistic contradictions, they are growing ever more pronounced. Capitalism offers no peace and plenty but mass unemployment, starvation and threat of nuclear holocaust. Capitalism is a decadent system which long ago outlived its usefulness. Communism represents the future of humanity.
In these challenging but difficult times there is a burning need for a strong, united Communist Party. However, the Euro CPGB leaders have completely embraced open class collaborationism and have wrecked the party.
Only a party steeled in Marxist-Leninist ideology and organised on the basis of iron discipline deserves to be called a Communist Party. The Euro opportunism which dominates the ‘official’ CPGB completely prevented the struggle for these ends being conducted within the ‘normal’ channels.
Since the late 1960s the unity of the CPGB broke down due to the effects of cancerous opportunism. While bureaucratic centralism ruled, the CPGB became a collection of right opportunist and centrist groups, each having its own internal discipline and operating hidden from view. However they were united in one thing – their opportunism.
That was why in November 1981 we began an open ideological struggle against all forms of opportunism with the publication of The Leninist. The Leninist exposed the existence of the factional groupings operating in the party, exposed their political shallowness, exposed their opportunism and strove to unite all genuine communists in Britain around the politics and principles of Marxism-Leninism.
The success of that struggle, the necessity of saving our Party, now demands that we reclaim the name of the Communist Party of Great Britain. The CPGB cannot be abandoned to be liquidated in the hands of the Euros. That is why we, the Leninist forces of the CPGB have been fighting and why we have now taken the decision to form a distinct, revolutionary, wing of the CPGB – the CPGB (The Leninist). This is not a factional move. It signifies a qualitative development in the struggle between Marxism-Leninism and opportunism. No force which wants revolution in Britain can remain indifferent to this struggle.
Those who call themselves the Executive Committee of the CPGB today do so illegitimately. There is no revolutionary unity of will inside the ‘official’ CPGB today, it has been destroyed by opportunism. The fact that the bourgeois establishment praises Marxism Today, ‘the theoretical and discussion journal of the CPGB’, will not save them. Their organisation is falling apart at the seams.
The New Communist Party and Communist Party of Britain splits call themselves ‘communist parties’ but they are neither communist nor parties. They are opportunist groupings, just like the Euro CPGB.
A genuine Communist Party is a class party. It consists of the most class conscious, most dedicated and self sacrificing section of the working class. It is the general staff of the working class, its vanguard. All the opportunist groupings lack any sense of revolutionary dedication or sacrifice. This is the inescapable product of their reformist political perspective. Any organisation that believes that socialism in Britain can be achieved peacefully, via the Labour Party, by definition feels no imperative to build a Marxist-Leninist party. This is not the case with Leninists.
Convened in order to qualitatively take forward the struggle against opportunism, the Fourth Conference met under the slogan: ‘Reforge the CPGB’. the conference charged the National Committee of the CPGB (The Leninist) with the task of preparing a draft programme to be presented for discussion in Party organisations and in our working class, and subsequently presented as a proposal to the congress of the reforged CPGB.
Participants showed by their militancy, seriousness and readiness to give their all to the cause of communism that this aim will be achieved.
Long Live Leninism!
National Committee of the Communist Party of Great Britain (The Leninist)
December 17, 1989