Manifesto for Revolutionary Liberation: Chapter V. The Crisis of Leadership and the Construction of a Revolutionary World Party




The central task in the upcoming period consists in the need to overcome the dramatic crisis of leadership. The objective development of capitalism – its decay and crisis-ridden character – will certainly help the masses understand the bankruptcy of this system, and the necessity of overthrowing it. However, in order to help the masses in this process, the workers’ vanguard must apply a program of transitional demands which creates a bridge from the struggles of today and the present consciousness of the masses to the strategic task of socialist revolution. This is why revolutionaries have to combine relentless propaganda for such a program with exemplary mass work and the application of the united front tactic towards the mass organizations of the workers and the oppressed.


The programmatic and organizational collapse of the Trotskyist Fourth International in 1948-52 interrupted the revolutionary continuity which had previously extended from the days of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels’ leadership in the Communist League, through the Second International until 1914, Lenin’s revolutionary Communist International up to Trotsky’s Fourth International. Today, small forces like the RCIT are taking up the thread of revolutionary continuity in their struggle for the construction of the revolutionary world party. Such a world party will be the fifth time that the working class has established an International (hence we call it the Fifth International).


However, there are huge obstacles on the road to building the revolutionary world party. In addition to the imperialist powers and the bourgeois state, the working class faces numerous enemies, opponents and unreliable advocates, in its own ranks. The lack of revolutionary continuity for many decades has led to a situation in which the workers’ and popular mass organizations are dominated by reformist and populist bureaucratic leaderships. These reformist forces are the main obstacle to transforming the huge objective revolutionary potential of the present historic period into actual proletarian revolutions.


Wars, revolutions and counter-revolutions are the most decisive tests for any political organization. Such situations inevitably lead to the surfacing of their true political character behind any declared formal program, as well as their relationship to the struggle of the workers and oppressed. Recent years have demonstrated that the official leaderships of the trade unions and popular organizations, of the reformist and bourgeois and petty-bourgeois populist parties (e.g., the Castro-Chavistas, Kirchnerists and Rousseff’s and Lula’s PT in Latin America, SYRIZA in Greece and other social democrats in Europe, the Stalinist CPI(M) in India and the Maoists in Nepal) as well as of the various strands of Islamism (e.g., the Muslim Brotherhood, various rebel groups in Syria or the Houthis in Yemen) – have all failed to offer the workers and popular masses a road out of their capitalist misery and humiliation. In other words, their political inclination – irrespective of their official “radical” proclamations – is to remain or become part of the state apparatus of the ruling capitalist class. It is, therefore, hardly surprising that they often have been, or aspire to become, an ally of one or several imperialist Great Powers. Centrism, irrespective of its political zigzagging and its use of “Marxist” terminology, always tends to adapt to one or other faction of the reformist bureaucracy, and serves as their “left” auxiliary troops.


The workers’ vanguard and all socialists must break with all these variations of political cul-de-sacs. We must choose a different path. As long as the working class and the oppressed do not possess a revolutionary combat party – nationally as well as worldwide – they cannot succeed in their struggle for liberation. In order to succeed against its powerful enemies, the working class must have a party with a clear program – outlining the way from the present situation to the conquest of power. It needs a party which concretizes such a program in a series of strategies and tactics related to the changing conditions of the class struggle. And it must have a party which accompanies such a program with a combat organization of steeled cadres which act in a centralized, coordinated fashion as a single clenched fist for the proletarian class struggle.


Therefore, the most urgent task in the present period is the timely founding of revolutionary parties and a new World Party of Socialist Revolution.



About RCIT Britain

What the RCIT stands for Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT) The Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT)is a revolutionary combat organisation fighting for the liberation of the working class and all oppressed. It has national sections in a number of countries. The working class is composed of all those (and their families) who are forced to sell their labor power as wage earners to the capitalists. The RCIT stands on the theory and practice of the revolutionary workers’ movement associated with the names of Marx, Engels, Lenin, and Trotsky. Capitalism endangers our lives and the future of humanity. Unemployment, war, environmental disasters, hunger, and exploitation are all part of everyday life under capitalism as are the imperialistic oppression of nations, the national oppression of migrants, and the oppression of women, young people, and homosexuals. Therefore, we want to eliminate capitalism. The liberation of the working class and all oppressed is possible only in a classless society without exploitation and oppression. Such a society can only be established internationally. Therefore, the RCIT is fighting for a socialist revolution at home and around the world. This revolution must be carried out and lead by the working class, for only this class has the collective power to bring down the ruling class and build a socialist society. The revolution cannot proceed peacefully because a ruling class never has nor ever will voluntarily surrender its power. By necessity, therefore, the road to liberation includes armed rebellion and civil war against the capitalists. The RCIT is fighting for the establishment of workers’ and peasants’ republics, where the oppressed organize themselves in councils democratically elected in rank-and-file meetings in factories, neighbourhoods, and schools. These councils, in turn, elect and control the government and all other statue authorities, and always retain the right to recall them. Authentic socialism and communism have nothing to do with the so-called “socialism” that ruled in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, and which continues to do so in China and Cuba, for example. In these countries, the proletariat was and is dominated and oppressed by a privileged party bureaucracy. Under capitalism, the RCIT supports all efforts to improve the living conditions of the workers and oppressed, while simultaneously striving to overthrow this system based on economic exploitation of the masses. Towards these ends, we work from within the trade unions where we advocate class struggle, socialism, and workers’ democracy. But trade unions and social democracy are controlled by a bureaucracy perniciously connected with the state and capital via status, high-paying jobs, and other privileges. Thus, the trade union bureaucracy is far from the interests and living conditions of its members, based as it is on the top, privileged layers of the working class – a labor aristocracy which has no real interest in replacing capitalism. Therefore, the true struggle for the liberation of the working class, the toppling of capitalism and the establishment of socialism, must be based on the broad mass of the proletariat rather than their “representative” from the upper trade union strata. We also fight for the expropriation of the big land owners as well as for the nationalisation of the land and its distribution to the poor and landless peasants. Towards this goal we struggle for the independent organisation of the rural workers. We support national liberation movements against oppression. We also support the anti-imperialist struggles of oppressed peoples against the great powers. Within these movements we advocate a revolutionary leadership as an alternative to nationalist or reformist forces. While the RCIT strives for unity of action with other organizations, we are acutely aware that the policies of social democrats and pseudo-revolutionary groups are dangerous, and ultimately represent an obstacle to the emancipation of the working class, peasants, and the otherwise oppressed. In wars between imperialist states we take a revolutionary defeatist position: we do not support either side, but rather advocate the transformation of the war into a civil war against the ruling class in each of the warring states. In wars between imperialist powers (or their stooges) and a semi-colonial countries we stand for the defeat of the former and the victory of the oppressed countries. As communists, we maintain that the struggle against national oppression and all types of social oppression (women, youth, sexual minorities etc.) must be lead by the working class, because only the latter is capable of fomenting a revolutionarily change in society . Therefore, we consistently support working class-based revolutionary movements of the socially oppressed, while opposing the leadership of petty-bourgeois forces (feminism, nationalism, Islamism, etc.), who ultimately dance to the tune of the capitalists, and strive to replace them with revolutionary communist leadership. Only with a revolutionary party fighting as its leadership can the working class be victorious in its struggle for liberation. The establishment of such a party and the execution of a successful revolution, as it was demonstrated by the Bolsheviks in Russia under Lenin and Trotsky remain the models for revolutionary parties and revolutions in the 21st century. For new, revolutionary workers' parties in all countries! For a 5th Workers International to be founded on a revolutionary program! Join the RCIT! No future without socialism! No socialism without revolution! No revolution without a revolutionary party!
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