(Comrade Asit Bhattacharyya, veteran Polit Bureau member, SUCI(C), delivered an inspiring and educative speech in Assamese in Guwahati on 26 April last on the occasion of observance of the 74th Party Foundation Day. The original speech in Assamese and its Bengali translation were published in instalments in Ganamukti and Ganadabi, our Assamese and Bengali organs respectively. It has been felt necessary to publish its English translation in Proletarian Era in instalments. The first instalment is given in this issue. Responsibility of translation error and inadequacy of expression, if any, lies with the Editorial Board of Proletarian Era.)
This 24 April commemorated 74th Foundation Day of our beloved, the Socialist Unity Centre of India (Communist). Every year, we observe this day with due solemnity. Accordingly, in Assam also, the Day is being observed purposively and in a befitting manner. You all know that Comrade Shibdas Ghosh, an outstanding Marxist leader and thinker of the era was the founder of SUCI(C). As a worthy continuer of great Marx-Engels-Lenin-Stalin-Mao Zedong, Comrade Shibdas Ghosh Thought an all-embracing struggle grasped the essence of their teachings and accordingly founded, reared and steered the SUCI(C) as the genuine communist party on the soil. While observing the Party Foundation Day, we recapitulate his invaluable teachings and guidelines, seek to analyse prevailing national and international situations based on his thoughts and decide our course of action to accelerate the process of accomplishing anti-capitalist socialist revolution. When we turn to the national and international scenario including Assam, we find them grim in every respect. But our task is to find the correct way to free the society from this grimness based on Comrade Shibdas Ghosh Thought which is the beacon. To comprehend the obtaining situation in its entirety, we need to focus on many issues. In a single meeting, touching upon all the aspects is not possible. Still, I shall try to discuss whatever possible in this meeting.
International situation surcharged with war tension
You are aware that when we are holding this meeting a war is going on between Russia and Ukraine. Ukraine once belonged to the Russian Tsarist Empire. After the historic proletarian revolution in1917, like many other neighbouring countries, Ukraine had voluntarily joined the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), the first socialist state in the world. From then onwards, Ukraine was one of the most important of all the republics which constituted Soviet Union. After sad dismantling of Soviet socialism following counter-revolution in 1991, Ukraine became a separate capitalist country. On the other hand, Russia, the biggest republic of erstwhile Soviet Union, not only turned into a capitalist country but a powerful imperialist country within a very short time. It is imperialist Russia led by Putin which has launched a war of aggression on Ukraine to expand its sphere of influence. The ongoing war which has already taken a heavy toll of life and property is showing no sign of subsiding. Ukraine, it is pertinent to mention, is being helped, militarily and morally, by the US-led NATO bloc to counter Russian aggression from the same imperialist interest. Thus, it is virtually a war between two imperialist camps. So many innocent citizens including women and children have lost their lives in this imperialism-sponsored war. Russia and Ukraine, in reality, two camps among imperialist powers are at war. Because of this war, the common people round the world who are bearing the entire brunt of global capitalist crisis are further slayed and pushed towards destitution.
Rich becoming richer and the poor poorer in dying capitalism
A cursory glance would reveal that inequality between a handful of super-rich and the oppressed millions is widening with every passing day. A few monopolist tycoons and multinationals as well as their lackeys who thrive on their mercy and crumbs who hardly constitute 5% of the total population are amassing fabulous wealth while 95% of exploited people are languishing in abject poverty and misery. These toiling millions are deprived of food, clothing and shelter as well as any means to eke out a bare living. Such is the plight of the common people the world over, save and except in North Korea and Cuba where socialism in the main is in existence. These monopolists instal their political servants to governmental power by a slew of manipulations in the election. Once saddled in power, these bourgeois parties riding on the brutal strength of police, bureaucracy and military have been bringing down one after another attack on the workers, peasants, students, youth, women and other sections of the toiling masses. This is the horrific spectacle of the imperialist-capitalist countries. In the same way, people of our country too, are being assailed by astronomical price rise, soaring unemployment, close-down of industries, huge job loss and so forth. The ruling capitalism is mounting attacks on people using both legal and illegal means. Known to be the richest among all capitalist-imperialist countries in the world, the USA too is deeply entrenched in acute economic crisis. Unemployment problem has been accentuating fast. The oppressed US citizens are in helpless situation. After the historic May-day struggle, there were practically no effective movement in America. Only, a few years back, we saw the ‘Occupy Wall Street’ movement. There was a time when both skilled and unskilled workers from different countries had migrated to America and secured jobs there. Today, the same richest country is unable to provide work to its people. Great Britain too had once established its empire over two-third of the world our country included. British domination in India lasted for over 200 years. Now, toiling American people are finding it difficult to survive. Because of acute shortage of jobs and rapid fall in income, the standard of life for the majority of people is going down. In every country, the rich-poor ratio is 5 : 95. Those who have to sell their labour power to somehow earn a livelihood, have no security of life. They are plunged in abject poverty. The seven powerful imperialist countries like US, UK, France, Germany, Japan—known as G-7— are all enmeshed in deep economic crisis. Unable to bear with the growing problems in life, people of these countries too are coming out on the streets to seek redress, holding meetings and rallies. Even look at the plight of Russia today! The reactionary and revisionist forces who grabbed power after great Stalin’s demise, rolled out the process of counter-revolution by directing a slanderous campaign against Stalin. They knew that if socialism has to be destroyed, Stalin who was an authority of Leninism and architect of socialist reconstruction had to be maligned. The Khrushchevite revisionists misguided the people by showering false promise of ushering in a higher socialist economy by anyhow increasing production. Due to the absence of required level of political understanding, people of Russia failed to detect the machination of the counter revolutionary forces. This was how reactionary thoughts were firmed up on Soviet soil.
Debacle of Soviet socialism
In 1991, through counter revolution capitalism was restored in Russia. In Soviet socialism, food, clothing, shelter, free health and education were guaranteed. Unemployment and poverty were eradicated. Prices were progressively dipping. Within two decades, Soviet Union surpassed US in production volume. This is no exaggeration but recorded in history. No one can deny this fact. But just within 30-32 years of dismantling of Soviet socialism, all the former constituents of USSR are in shambles. Due to severe crisis food, clothing, shelter and other necessities of life are eluding the people there. In contrast, as indicated above, under socialism, people did not have to worry about these things and the objective condition was almost ripe for free distribution of food. Soviet Union had become the ideal before the working people of different countries who also wanted to conduct a similar struggle to establish socialism in their country. In the process, one third of the world embraced socialism. Imperialist agents and their associates, the modern revisionists, hatched conspiracy to destroy the Soviet Union. It was possible for them to do so taking advantage of the fact that commensurate with stupendous material progress, the task of elevating the level of ideological consciousness of the members of the ruling Bolshevik party, let alone the common masses, was neglected. So, the ploy woven by the counter-revolutionaries remained unnoticed.
Suffering Russian people are craving for bringing back socialism
It is also to be noted that just as in different countries people have been vocal against Russian attack on Ukraine, a large section of people in Russia have also stood up against this imperialist war. They are organising meetings and taking out rallies to register their protest. They are denouncing war monger Putin. Once, the arch revisionists and counter-revolutionaries like Brezhnev, Gorbachev and Yeltsin had befooled them by denigrating Stalin. Now, the same Russian people are bringing out rallies holding portraits of Lenin and Stalin and demanding return of socialism. See how people from their own experience can realise the truth. Falsity can prevail temporarily, it cannot prevail for long. Though North Korea and Cuba are still having a socialist system and maintaining a firm anti-imperialist stand, it is not clear how far the struggle to raise the ideological standard is being conducted there.
Fall of ideological standard caused dismantling of cherished socialism
Comrade Shibdas Ghosh, the great leader of the proletariat, had time and again reminded us that if a relentless powerful ideological struggle is not conducted in the socialist countries to uplift the ideological-political standard and the level of consciousness of the people, then the counter-revolutionary intrigues by the defeated capitalist class would be successful in weakening and ultimately destroying socialism. Since this warning of Comrade Shibdas Ghosh went unheeded, counter-revolution succeeded in toppling socialism, though temporarily, in almost all the socialist countries the Soviet Union and China. Although, the imperialists-capitalists have got the whole world within their grip now, they are passing sleepless nights as crisis is growing and so is growing people’s protest. Accumulated grievances of oppressed people are erupting like volcanoes. The entire world is witnessing surge of people’s movement in gushes.
Imperialist-capitalists are shattering moral backbone of people
Another phenomenon is glaringly visible. Haunted by the fear-complex of anti-capitalist revolution, the ruling capitalist class in all countries is trying to break the moral backbone of the people particularly the youths through incessant propagation of obscenity, sex-perversion and rotten thoughts. As a result, there is a spurt in crimes, corrupt activities and immoral conducts. From the first to the last page of newspapers, you would find horrifying news of brutal murder, rape, gang-rape and violence coupled with coverages of limitless corruption of the ministers, bureaucrats and other power-holders. The familial structure is breaking down with children often killing their parents for property, brother cheating brother, father selling daughter for money, husband killing wife and vice-versa because of domestic quarrel and out of suspicion of adultery, etc. All such things have become commonplace. But the moot question is why the society is teeming in all such aberrations and maladies? What is the root of all evils?
Elaboration of the causes of downfall of socialism
Based on the teachings of Comrade Shibdas Ghosh, we have analysed the reasons behind dismantling of the Soviet Union. Enlightened by the teachings of the great Marx and Engels, great Lenin and Stalin had founded a new unique country, the Soviet Union, which comprised Russia and many other independent countries who willingly joined it. Its spectacular advancement in economic, political and socio-cultural fields had overwhelmed the people of the entire world. The debacle of Soviet socialism is indeed painful and regrettable.
Great Lenin was in the helm of the nation for nearly six years after the socialist revolution of 1917. After his untimely demise, socialist reconstruction went on under the leadership of Comrade Stalin. We can recall how at an early age, we could perceive from afar, the spectacular material advancement taking place in socialist Russia! We were highly inspired by the remarkable progress of Soviet socialism and longed that such would be our country also in the days to come. The impact of glorious achievements of Soviet Union under the stewardship of great Stalin was on all over the world. Everywhere, people’s attraction towards socialism was growing. What I want to emphasize here is that, other things apart, so long as socialist Soviet Union was in existence, neither USA nor it’s associates could dare engineer any local wars, let alone world war.
US imperialists then also considered themselves as a superpower. But the nascent Soviet Union went ahead of them in many respects and that too in a very short period. Soviet Union worked as a bulwark against imperialist war machination and an apostle of world peace. But after sad fall of Soviet Union and the socialist bloc, the US imperialists were unbridled in their war-mongering and perpetrated wars on Iraq, Syria, Iran and Afghanistan killing thousands of people and turning many into refugees.
Thus, world peace was again disrupted. Absence of Soviet Union has been the main reason for that. Earlier, Soviet Union had time and again warned that if the imperialists launch any unjust war on anyone, it was capable of resisting it. Such effective and decisive was the role of Soviet Union as is attested by history. But the question that has rightly arisen in the minds of the people that despite all-out economic and material development of Soviet Union under the leadership of Stalin which overwhelmed the entire people of the world, how could the reactionary counter-revolution take place superseding all such achievements? Why, in spite of people enjoying fulfilment of all basic needs of life, the counter-revolutionaries could raise their ugly heads? (To be contd.)