By Dimitrios Kivotidis
COMMUNIST and workers’ parties from all over Europe, including the New Communist Party of Britain, met in Brussels last October to set up a new liaison committee specifically aimed at co-ordinating workers’ opposition to the European Union. On the 1st October 2013 in a meeting room of the EU Parliament in Brussels the founding meeting was held of the “Initiative” of communist and workers’ parties in order to study and elaborate European issues and to coordinate their activity.
The Communist position towards the European Union starts with the elementary Marxist thesis that there is one fundamental division within society. One can either be with the working class or with the capitalist class. And there is only one position in relation to this non-negotiable either/or which entails struggle towards an indivisible, classless society. It is the communist position that answers this dilemma without hesitation: with the working class.
The necessary road to an indivisible society, without division into classes, without division into exploiters and exploited, goes through the leadership of the working class and the organisation around its vanguard party, through the dictatorship of the proletariat and socialist construction. The role of the communist party differs in each concrete socio-historical period, but is always necessary and leads the way for the movement.
The party is one, but it is also multiple. The communist parties form concrete universalities functioning under the principle of proletarian internationalism. The party leads the struggle of the conscious working class but it also turns to the other communist parties and creates lines of communication and coordination of activity. This practice is an authentic communist practice which acquires special importance in the context of the imperialist construction of the European Union.
The crucial role of the initiative of the Communist and Workers’ Parties of Europe is to show to the working peoples of Europe the way out of the European Union through working class government;
The “Initiative” coordinates the action of the communist parties that regard the EU as the choice of European capitalism which, it says: “Promotes measures in favour of the monopolies, the concentration and centralisation of capital; it is strengthening its characteristics as an imperialist economic, political and military bloc opposed to the interests of the working class, the popular strata; it intensifies armaments, authoritarianism, state repression and the limitation of sovereign rights.”
The member parties of the Initiative are united in the vision of a society without exploitation, without poverty, without social injustice, without imperialistic wars. The 30 communist and workers’ parties of Europe are struggling towards this strategic goal, towards a different Europe, not only in form but in substance as well. They are struggling for the dissolution of the imperialist construction that is the European Union; for the overthrow of the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie and the establishment of working class governments in the European states; for the socialist construction; for an indivisible society, a communist society.
But why is the Initiative of Communist Parties a necessity in our current predicament? One can begin to answer that question by looking at the reactionary nature of the European Union under capitalism. But this is not a new observation. As Lenin wrote in On the Slogan for a United States of Europe almost a century ago:
“From the standpoint of the economic conditions of imperialism — ie the export of capital arid the division of the world by the ‘advanced’ and ‘civilised’ colonial powers — a United States of Europe, under capitalism, is either impossible or reactionary…
“A United States of Europe under capitalism is tantamount to an agreement on the partition of colonies. Under capitalism, however, no other basis and no other principle of division are possible except force… A United States of Europe is possible as an agreement between the European capitalists ... but to what end? Only for the purpose of jointly suppressing socialism in Europe.”
The current socio-economic conditions are barely different than the period when Lenin wrote these words. One cannot overlook the fact that the European Union is an inter-state, imperialist union of the monopolies. In the words of the Greek comrade Giorgos Marinos: “The EU has a specific economic base; it is supported by the cooperation and merging of the strength of the major business monopoly groups. Despite the contradictions that manifest themselves in its ranks their basic criterion is their own interests, and the control of the markets, and, consequently, they are against the peoples and their rights.”
As a result, the reactionary nature of the EU is manifested in a relentless manner during the current capitalist crisis. The devastating effects of the capitalist crisis are felt all over the globe and – especially in the context of the imperialist EU —the communist movement is obliged to acquire a unified revolutionary strategy so as to overthrow the outdated capitalist system, which is becoming continually more reactionary and dangerous. This obligation is intrinsically linked to the struggle against opportunism and Euro-communism.
As is well known, the bogus ideology of Euro-communism, along with the counter-revolution in the Soviet Union and the other socialist countries of Europe, has in the last decades inflicted great harm on the communist movement. In their programmatic declarations Euro-communist and other opportunist currents refer to socialism in a perverted manner, since their political line negates the revolutionary path. The term “socialism” is deprived of its essence: without the working class power, the dictatorship of the proletariat, without the socialisation of the means of production and central planning.
It is in this manner that the so called European Left Party, “which is forming networks all over the world with EU funds, is trying to sabotage the communist movement; it is a vehicle that promotes the strategy of the EU within the labour movement, it is inextricably linked with social democracy and it must be dealt with in a strict ideological and political way. Its core consists of forces which celebrated the overthrow of socialism, forces which in the framework of anti-communism identify themselves with various bourgeois and other reactionary forces in the name of ‘anti-Stalinism’.”
Its reactionary character is evident by its ideological position towards the current capitalist crisis. Euro-communist parties approach the capitalist crisis as a “crisis of neo-liberalism” or a “financial crisis”. These approaches are limited to incriminating a form of capitalism’s management, exonerating the social-democratic, neo-Keynesian management, the capitalist system itself. These are opportunist positions that disorient the labour and people’s movement.
It is the historical task of the Communist Party in this predicament to struggle towards the regroupment of the labour movement. The working class and its vanguard party have to be in the front of the formation of the People’s Alliance. The People’s Alliance expresses the interests of the working class, the semi-proletarians, the self-employed and the poor farmers, the young people and the women of the poor popular strata in the struggle against the monopolies and capitalist ownership, against the assimilation of the country into the imperialist unions.
The People’s Alliance is a social alliance and struggles in terms of the movement, following a line of rupture and overthrow. It adopts the socialisation of the concentrated means of production, the central planning, and the workers’ social control. The formation of the People’s Alliance under the leadership of the working class is a necessity because the struggle for the disengagement from the EU is linked with the struggle against the power of the monopolies and the struggle of the working class and its allies, for working class- people’s power.
For all the above reasons, the existence of the Communist Party, the existence of a party that applies in its practice the principles of Marxism-Leninism is necessitated. It is necessitated primarily by the main contradiction on which capitalist society is based. The existence of the Party is necessitated by the class struggle, by the historical task of the proletariat that depends on the concrete socio-historical condition.
What is more, this necessity is universal, since the class struggle has its own laws which are founded on the fundamental and universal contradiction between capital and labour. For this reason the Communist Party in each country has the obligation to study the specific situation, the development of capitalism, the course of the sectors and the branches of economy, the changes in the superstructure, the class and social structure in order to chart a revolutionary strategy.
The Initiative of the Communist and Workers’ Parties of Europe is necessary in order to enhance the struggle against the imperialist EU and, simultaneously, through the struggle of workers, to promote the only alternative solution: of a Europe of peace, progress, and socialism.
Europe’s working classes and the other exploited strata of the continent need a powerful Communist Party; they need a Party founded on and guiding its actions according to the principles of Marxism-Leninism; a Party to be in the vanguard of the organisation of the struggle of the working class, to provide guidance and inspiration with the vision for the new socialist society. A Party that treats socialism not as a goal for the distant future, but as an issue of the daily activity as its timeliness is highlighted by the torments of the peoples.
As Lenin said:
The abolition of classes is impossible without a dictatorship of the oppressed class, of the proletariat. A free union of nations in socialism is impossible without a more or less prolonged and stubborn struggle of the socialist republics against the backward states.
The European peoples will only be liberated from the bonds of capitalist exploitation and the imperialist unions when the working classes together with their allies carry out the socialist revolution and move forwards to construct socialism-communism.