How Can Your Enemies Be Your Friends? RCP Vacillates on Theory of the “Three Worlds”

Marxist-Leninist Organizing Committee
Unite!, Vol. 4, No. 2, February 15, 1978.

Who are the friends and enemies of proletarian revolution and national liberation? The answer to this question has historically provided a line of demarcation between Marxist-Leninists and opportunists of all shades. Today, proponents of the theory of the “three worlds” blur the strategic alliance between the international proletariat and the national liberation movements of oppressed nations and peoples. In all of the second-rank imperialist countries, they aspire to have the proletariat ally with the bourgeoisie and with the U.S. bourgeoisie internationally. In this fashion, they liquidate the struggle of the proletariat to overthrow bourgeois state rule and establish socialism.

In the U.S. several revisionist organizations uphold the theory of the “three worlds”. Among them is the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP), which states “This three worlds analysis gives, in our view, a correct appraisal of the general role that countries, or groupings of countries, are .playing today on the world scale. As such it is one important part of the more general world wide united front line.” (Revolution, July, 1977, p.5). This organization presents an analysis of the friends to be united with and the enemies to be fought that is wrought with vacillation and revisionism.

The RCP exhibits its vacillation most clearly in analysis of the “second world”, the second-rank imperialist powers of Europe and Japan. Consistent with the revisionist theory of the “three worlds”, the RCP places the “second world” in the united front, “…to the extent that these Second World countries resist superpower contention for domination, they aid the world wide struggle…there is a trend of uniting to strengthen this resistance….” (Revolution, p.19 and 5) According to this analysis, the second-rank imperialist powers are part of the united front against imperialism.

The RCP tries to cover itself by saying “…the ruling classes of these (“second world”) countries are part of, though not the heart of, the target of the world-wide united front against imperialism …it is clear that these Second World imperialists must also be fought by the people of the world.” (Revolution, p.19)

How can the second-rank imperialist powers at the same time be friends to be united with and enemies to be fought against? The RCP supports the “second world” in one sentence and withdraws support in the next.

Such opportunism cannot give the proletariat the vanguard leadership it needs and desires on the question of the friends and enemies of proletarian revolution. Such leadership in the U.S. comes only from the MLOC, which does not stoop to prettify imperialists of any size.

In the struggle for the triumph of the revolution and socialism, it is necessary to take advantage of the contradictions between capitalist and imperialist states on the one hand, and the two superpowers on the other. But here we are talking about contradictions within the ranks of the enemies of the revolution and socialism because these capitalist and imperialist states are not the allies of the people in struggle against the superpowers. (UNITE!, Supplement, Dec. 1977, p.2)

The contradiction between imperialists is a secondary reserve of the proletariat, which we will use, while never forgetting that our “…main power lies in the alliance of the working class with the oppressed nations. Together this force will defeat the entire imperialist system through armed struggle.” (Revolution Will Surely Triumph!, p. 36.)

Published by Victor Vaughn

Anti-revisionist Marxist-Leninist, monarch of Latveria, owner, National Secretary of the American Party of Labor (APL) and operator of "The Espresso Stalinist" blog.

One thought on “How Can Your Enemies Be Your Friends? RCP Vacillates on Theory of the “Three Worlds”

  1. There was a period of time, a way too short period of time when MLOC was one of the leading forces within the US m-l-ist movement. This article and generally their newspaper “Unite!” and their theoretical journal, “Comm. Line” were definitely putting out some of the best stuff of anybody in the country then.
    This short period, 2-3 years if I remember correctly, goes from their formation to their call for (still another) party-formation with them as the main core. (Their “Isra-Principle” as the basis of that party-forming drive, was so formalistic and out of touch, that they managed to unite with less than 5 small groups! Even in this UNITE! article they mention only, exclusively, themselves as who to rally around. “Such leadership in the U.S. can only come from MLOC…” YIKES!) (Keep in mind, as, formerly, part of the Black Workers Congress, they always played a somewhat leading role, also, unfortunatley for an equally short period of time).
    Most of the reviews I’ve seen of those periods, when attempting to summarize what was THE main error, point to sectarianism. I agreed then, and still do, that sectarianism was a huge negative factor. But it was NOT the only, or, in my opinion, even the main factor. What was that main factor?

    THE MAIN FACTOR IN THE FAILURE TO BUILD A NEW U.S. M-L PARTY = Too weak a grap of the fundamentals of M-L-ism
    In my opinion, THE main factor that led to the failure to build a new U.S. M-List Party was the movement-wide failure to grasp the true essence of the science of M-L-ism. This fundamental weakness explains why so many many mistakes were made: whether in political line (mostly rightist, tailist mistakes NOT ultra-leftist getting-ahead-of-the-masses mistakes – as most claimed, later on) AND in organizational line: yes left-sectarianism (drawing 100 lines of demarcation! (much like Mao’s “Letting 100 Schools Of Thought”)).
    It was this inadequate grasp of M-L-ist fundamentals that led to the mostly rightist politics and the flip-flops and inconsistencies in line amongst the dozens of organizations and thousands of members AND the succumbing of their leaderships to big-headed arrogance (“we’re (almost) the only ones who’ve got it right”) which (with the memberships too weak to recognize and fight this) led to the sectarianism. (While never forgetting the very important role played by enemy attacks, both from without the orgs and from within them – agents).
    If it was correct for the great Lenin (and Staliin) to allow Trotsky, after 15 whole years of anti-Party manuevering, to come into the Bolshevik Party on the eve of the victory of the revolution; if it was correct for Stalin to allow Trotsky to remain in the Party for almost 2 full decades (and let me state unequivocably that both of these decisions WERE correct); how could we have been unable to unite when virtually all of us were sworn anti-Trotskyites and anti-Revisionists? Because, that, exactly that, should have been ENOUGH, enough as lines of demarcation. We should have united ON THAT BASIS PLUS, of course, ACCEPTANCE/DEFENSE OF M-L-ISTS BASICS. ALL OTHER DIFFERENCES should have been deferred, and battled out, later, WITHIN the Party AFTER it was formed; instead of being used as reasons to not even unite organizationally. We should have been able to unite within our Party most of the best of the members of the RU/RCP, OL, ATM, BWC, MLOC, WVO, etc. etc. and raised the great majority of that party’s membership to an ever-higher level of grasp (both theoretical and practical) of our science. But we didn’t know enough about what we were doing and we ending up making far too many mistakes including drawing far too many lines of demarcation.

    I’m not here addressing the objective factors. But, in, yes, addressing the subjective factros, that’s not all either. So far I’ve addressed internal (to the U.S.) subjective factors; but there are also always external subjective factors. Imagine if there had been a Comm. International. They would have played a huge role in aiding us: in learning the science; in avoiding the repeating of so many basic mistakes; against one-sidedness and arrogance, and, in uniting ourselves. There were perhaps 10,000 people who during a 20 year period considered themselves U.S. M-L-ists. Certainly a single M-L-ist Party could have resulted with at least a few hundreds united within it; and hundreds of others more loosely allied with it. (Contrast this with the fact that some 95%+ no longer even call themselves M-L-ist – what a horrible track record; what a shame; especially in the #1 Imperialist country – where any M-L-ist influence would get multiplied).
    So why wasn’t there a C.I. during that period? THE one major criticism I have of Enver Hoxha and the P.L.A. under his leadership, is that, while they did organize/attend numerous bi-party and multi-party conferences, he/they didn’t take the lead in re-building the absolutely necessary new C.I.; heck, he/they didn’t even call for one to be built.
    And this is far from being only a U.S.-related question. Where is THE Party in a 100 other countries? Why do so very few, if any, even exist? Certainly, while the party-building process in each country has and will have its own peculiarities; the science is the same and so, the overall general lessons must be the same: Internally: too weak a grasp of the basics of M-L-ism AND externally: no C.I. to lead/guide.

    N.B. I have some serious thoughts about “What Is To Be Done, 2012” OR “how to get from ‘here’ to ‘there’; but that would/should be a whole other post.
    Dear Mr. ExpressoSt., would you allow me to write it and publish it here at your site?

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