By Jose Maria Sison
Founding Chairman, Communist Party of the Philippines
3 January 1996
This speech of Prof. Jose Maria Sison ought to have been included in For Democracy and Socialism Against Imperialist Globalization, Volume II of his selected writings from 1991 to 2009. But it was inadvertently not included because it had been obscurely filed.
Comrades and friends,
I wish you a happy and successful new year. It is fine that, as we enter the new year, we have the launching of the German edition of Mao Zedong Thought Lives. This is a meaningful occasion to be together as proletarian revolutionaries and as fighters for the socialist cause.
Let me congratulate Comrade Stefan Engel as chairman of the MLPD and the International Conference of Marxist-Leninist Parties and Organizations, the entire MLPD, the editors and translators, and the entire leadership and staff of Verlag Neuer Weg for the publication of the German edition.
I am deeply pleased and honored to be at this occasion to make some remarks and co-sign copies of the book in my capacity as co-chairman of the International Seminar on Mao Zedong Thought in 1993 and as one of the general editors of all editions arising from that seminar.
It is of crucial importance to propagate the study and application of Mao Zedong Thought. From the great treasury and arsenal of Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought is an indispensable and powerful weapon not only against imperialism and all reaction but also against modern revisionism. It draws the line between genuine and phoney communists.
Mao Zedong Thought is the product of the application of Marxism-Leninism on the concrete conditons of China and concrete practice of the Chinese revolution. At the same time, it is the further development of Marxism-Leninism in a comprehensive and profound way, culminating in the thoroughgoing critique of modern revisionism and in the theory and practice of continuing revolution under proletarian dictatorship.
In his own time, Mao was victorious and proved the correctness of his theory and practice of continuing revolution under proletarian dictatorship by relying on the masses and by striving to combat revisionism, prevent the restoration of capitalism and consolidate socialism. Had he not successfully fought for socialism against revisionism, he and his line would have been defeated any time between 1956 and 1976.
The restoration of capitalism in socialist countries and the disintegration of revisionist regimes have proven beyond doubt the correctness of Mao Zedong Thought. In China itself, the betrayal of Mao Zedong Thought has led to the Dengist restoration of capitalism and has thereby further proven the correctness of Mao’s proletarian revolutionary line in socialist construction and revolution. Mao predicted that capitalism would be restored in China, as in the Soviet bloc countries, if the revisionists had taken power.
The correctness of Mao Zedong Thought is proven not only by its success in Mao’s own time and by the restoration of capitalism as a result of revisionist betrayal. It is also proven by the fact that the Chinese workers and peasants continue to invoke the revolutionary legacy of Mao in resisting the revisionist rulers, who themselves cannot obliterate Mao but who even try to use the name of Mao against Mao.
As the contradiction is sharpening between the pseudocommunist exponents of economic liberalization and the blatantly anticommunist exponents of political liberalization, the genuine communists and the masses have grown increasingly active in upholding Mao Zedong Thought and condemning the complete negation of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution and the restoration of capitalism by the Dengist counterrevolution.
There are reports from China that in the face of the havoc wrought by the imperialists and by the domestic bureaucrat and private bourgeoisie, the workers and peasants are demanding that revolution against imperialism and the new bourgeoisie be waged anew under the banner of Mao Zedong Thought. The demand has arisen amidst continuing widespread social unrest, which includes events like the urban uprisings in 1989, the peasant uprisings in 1993, the workers strikes since 1994 and persistent spontaneous killings of oppressive officials.
For more than two decades already, the revisionist bureaucrat capitalists have suppressed proletarian class struggle and the revolutionary mass movement and have tried to ban any public discussion of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. But lately, the demand for reaffirming the cultural revolution is on the upsurge. Thus, the ruling revisionist authorities allowed the Beijing University’s Research Centre for Contemporary China to hold a meeting on November 30 on the cultural revolution. Participants criticized Deng’s complete negation of this revolution. The meeting included top officials of the Central Party Research Centre and the Central Policy Research Centre.
However, the revisionists and bureaucrat capitalists merely wish to coopt and derail the discussion of the cultural revolution. They continue to decry the two-line struggle within the Communist Party of China in Mao’s time as unwarranted class struggle and to whip up the perverse notion that the mass movement is justifiable only if it were to promote bourgeois democracy.
Under the dictates of imperialism and the rule of the new bourgeoisie masquerading as socialist, China’s economy has become grossly lopsided, with its comprehensive industrial base already undermined, and is now in the throes of a crisis of overproduction in the low-wage manufacture of consumer goods for export to the imperialist countries. Cocksure about having made China dependent on the imperialist countries, the United States is brashly pressuring the Chinese revisionist rulers to further liberalize trade and investments and privatize or close down the state enterprises.
The escalating exploitation and oppression drives the broad masses of the people to rebel. The genuine adherents of Mao Zedong Thought have the opportunity to lead them and take advantage of the growing contradiction between the revisionists who wish to retain the signboards of socialism and the communist party on one hand and the flagrant anticommunists who are in a hurry to throw these away on the other hand.
I urge you to get your copy of the German edition of Mao Zedong Thought Lives and read it as part of a continuing study of Mao Zedong Thought and of the past, present and future of China. The legacy of Mao is still alive in the hearts and minds of the Chinese proletariat and people. And whatever happens in China will continue to have an important bearing on the course of the world proletarian revolution and the broad anti-imperialist movement.
We are faced today with the ever worsening new world disorder as a result of the rampage of imperialism, especially in the third world and former Soviet bloc countries. The destructiveness of imperialism is accelerated by the rapid concentration of capital. It is propelled by the use of high technology for profit and the most speculative forms of finance capital. In view of the current social retrogression of the capitalist world in the continuing era of imperialism and proletarian revolution, the teachings of Mao Zedong on the new-democratic and socialist stages of the Chinese revolution are still significant and relevant to the revolutionary forces and people of the world.
As surely as imperialism is wreaking havoc on the lives of the world proletariat and people, we are certain of the resurgence of the anti-imperialist and socialist movement. Our revolutionary optimism is based on the scientific analysis of the worsening conditions of the people under capitalism and on the indefatigable efforts of genuine proletarian revolutionaries to learn lessons from the historical experience of the proletariat and to rebuild the international communist movement and the revolutionary mass movement.
The great significance of Mao Zedong Thought is that it provides us with the comprehensive and profound basis for answering the jibe of the imperialists and their petty-bourgeois camp followers that socialism is hopeless. It gives us the foresight that when once more we shall have socialist societies the proletarian revolutionaries will know better than ever before how to uphold, defend, consolidate and further develop socialism until imperialism is defeated on a global scale and communism can be realized.
The International Conference of Marxist-Leninist Parties and Organizations has performed a great service to the cause of socialism and proletarian internationalism by upholding, defending and promoting Marxism-Leninism and Mao Zedong Thought, by sponsoring the International Seminar on Mao Zedong Thought and by publishing the results of the seminar, especially the General Declaration on Mao Zedong Thought and the various editions of selected papers.