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 People of Indonesia, Unite and Fight to Overthrow the Fascist Regime



[Including a Self-Criticism by the Indonesian Communist Party, 1966]

[This is the complete version of the English-language pamphlet published by the Foreign Languages Press in Peking (now Beijing) in 1968. A number of explanatory footnotes have been added, which are taken from an abridged edition of the pamphlet which was published by the Revolutionary Communist Party, U.S.A. in its magazine Revolution (Winter/Spring 1987 issue).]

Contents

    "People of Indonesia, Unite and Fight to Overthrow the Fascist Regime", Editorial from Hongqi (Red Flag), published by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, No. 11, 1967.

        [Citations for Hongqi article]


    "Statement by the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Indonesian Comunist Party" (Excerpts), August 17, 1966.

    "Self-Criticism by the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Indonesian Communist Party" (Excerpts), September 1966.

    [Explanatory Notes]



People of Indonesia, Unite and Fight to Overthrow the Fascist Regime
- Editorial of Hongqi (Red Flag), No.11, 1967 -

      After staging the counter-revolutionary 1965 coup d'etat, the Suharto-Nasution Right-wing military clique, faithful lackey of U.S. imperialism and anti-communist ally of Soviet revisionism, established a fascist dictatorship of unprecedented ruthlessness in Indonesia.

      For the past year or more, it has followed an out-and-out traitorous, dictatorial, anti-communist, anti-China and anti-popular counter-revolutionary policy.

      It has imposed a white terror in Indonesia on an unprecedented scale, slaughtered several hundred thousand Communists and revolutionary people and thrown into prison another several hundred thousand fine sons and daughters of the Indonesian people. All Indonesia has been turned into one vast hell. By engaging in bloody suppression, it attempts in vain to wipe out the Indonesian Communist Party and stamp out the Indonesian revolution.

      This clique cherishes an inveterate hatred for socialist China, which resolutely supports the revolutionary struggle of the Indonesian people. It has repeatedly carried out serious provocations against the Chinese people, whipped up anti-China, anti-Chinese campaigns and practised inhuman racist persecution against overseas Chinese. It has vainly tried to sabotage the traditional friendship between the Chinese people and the overseas Chinese in Indonesia on the one hand and the Indonesian people on the other, and to prevent the Chinese people from supporting the Indonesian people's revolution.

      In the final analysis, the many kinds of persecution against the Indonesian Communist Party and the Indonesian people by the Suharto-Nasution Right-wing military clique will only serve to hasten the arrival of the upsurge in the Indonesian revolution and speed its own doom. The heroic Indonesian Communists and people can neither be cowed, suppressed, nor wiped out. The determination of the Indonesian people to make revolution is unshakable, so is the Chinese people's determination to support their revolution. No reactionary force on earth can obstruct this.

      At present, the Indonesian Communists and revolutionary people are regrouping their forces for a new battle. The August 17, 1966 Statement of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Indonesian Communist Party and the Self-Criticism it endorsed in September, which were published by the magazine Indonesian Tribune not long ago, are a call to the Indonesian Communists and the Indonesian working class, peasants, revolutionary intellectuals and all anti-imperialist, anti-feudal revolutionary forces to unite and engage in a new struggle.

      The two documents of the Political Bureau of the Indonesian Communist Party are a telling blow at U.S. imperialism and its flunkeys, the Suharto-Nasution fascist military dictatorial regime, and the revisionist leading clique of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, and a tremendous encouragement to the revolutionary people of Indonesia.

      In these two documents, the Political Bureau of the Indonesian Communist Party sums up the experience and lessons of the Party in leading the Indonesian people's revolutionary struggle, criticizes the Right opportunist errors committed by the leadership of the Party in the past, points out the road for the Indonesian revolution, and lays down the principles for future struggle.

      The documents point out that Indonesia is a semi-colonial and semi-feudal country. The Suharto-Nasution military fascist dictatorship is a regime of the most reactionary classes in Indonesia: the comprador bourgeoisie, the bureaucrat-capitalists and the landlords. It is the primary task of the revolution in its present stage to overthrow this counter-revolutionary regime and the reactionary rule of imperialism and feudalism in Indonesia, to establish the people's democratic dictatorship and build a completely independent, democratic, new Indonesia.

      The documents emphatically point out:

          To achieve its complete victory, the Indonesian revolution must also follow the road of the Chinese revolution. This means that the Indonesian revolution must inevitably adopt this main form of struggle, namely, the people's armed struggle against the armed counter-revolution which, in essence, is the armed agrarian revolution of the peasants under the leadership of the proletariat.

      The Political Bureau criticizes the revisionist line of the 20th Congress of the C.P.S.U., and points out that this counter-revolutionary line has caused serious damage to the Indonesian Communist Party and brought tremendous losses to the Indonesian people's revolutionary movement. Modern revisionism, with the leadership of the C.P.S.U. as its centre, is the greatest danger to the international communist movement and to the Indonesian Communist Party as well. The bloody lesson of the loss of hundreds of thousands of lives in Indonesia shows once again that the revisionist road of "peaceful transition" advocated by the leadership of the C.P.S.U. is the road to burying the revolution, the road to exterminating the Party and the people.

      The documents hold that the leadership of the Party in the past deviated from the Marxist-Leninist theory on the state and one-sidedly stressed the possibilities of the so-called peaceful road and parliamentary road. It claimed that Indonesian bourgeois state power had two aspects, the "pro-people aspect" and the "anti-people aspect"; it hoped to bring about a fundamental change in state power by peaceful means through developing the "pro-people aspect". This is a sheer illusion of "peaceful transition".

      The documents criticize and repudiate the theory of "combining the three forms of struggle", namely, guerrilla warfare in the countryside, the workers' movement in the cities, and work among the enemy's armed forces. They point out that, concerning the "three forms of struggle", the leadership of the Party in the past, instead of leading them along the road of revolution, led them separately along the "peaceful road" and thereby virtually gave up the armed struggle. The documents emphasize that the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists must resolutely abandon this erroneous theory, hold high the banner of the people's armed revolution, establish revolutionary base areas in accordance with the experience of the Chinese revolution, and turn the backward villages into strong, consolidated military, political, and cultural bastions of the revolution.

      The Political Bureau regards as an important task of the Party the establishment of a broad anti-imperialist and anti-feudal united front led by the working class and based on the worker-peasant alliance. To carry this out, the Party must have a correct programme, correct principles and tactics and, what is particularly important, must grasp that form of armed struggle in which it integrates with the peasants and wins their support.

      The documents criticize the slogan of "national co-operation with the 'Nasakom' as the core" and hold that such a statement obscures the class content of the united front. In its effort to establish a united front with the national bourgeoisie, the Party leadership in the past abrogated the independent role of the proletariat and turned it into an appendage of the national bourgeoisie. It put the three components of Marxism on a par with the "three components of Sukarno's teachings" and in an unprincipled way recognized Sukarno as "the great leader of the revolution". The Party's erroneous attitude towards Sukarno was a major manifestation of its loss of independence within the united front.

      They point out that an arduous task lies ahead in the building up of the Indonesian Communist Party. It must be built into a Marxist-Leninist Party free from all forms of opportunism, one that resolutely opposes legalism, subjectivism and modern revisionism.

      The documents say that on the question of Party building the main mistakes in the past have been "liberalism and legalism". They criticize the Party for its tendency to blindly seek numerical strength in recruitment, and point out that the mass character of the Party is expressed first of all not in a vast membership but in close ties with the masses, in its political line defending the interests of the masses and in the overall application of the mass line.

      In order to build a Marxist-Leninist revolutionary Party, the Political Bureau of the Indonesian Communist Party calls upon the whole Party to improve its education in Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tse-tung's thought, to sum up the historical experience of the Party and carry out a rectification campaign.

      The documents point out:

          The experience of the struggle waged by the Party in the past has shown how indispensable it is for the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists, who are resolved to defend Marxism-Leninism and to combat modern revisionism, to study not only the teachings of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin, but also to devote special attention to studying the Thought of Mao Tse-tung who has succeeded in brilliantly inheriting, defending and developing Marxism-Leninism to its peak in the present era.

      After summing up the historical experience of the Indonesian revolution, the Statement and the Self-Criticism of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Indonesian Communist Party come to this important conclusion:

          To win victory for the people's democratic revolution the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists must hold aloft the Three Banners of the Party, namely:

          The first banner, the building of a Marxist-Leninist Party which is free from subjectivism, opportunism and modern revisionism.

          The second banner, the armed people's struggle which in essence is the armed struggle of the peasants in an anti-feudal agrarian revolution under the leadership of the working class.

          The third banner, the revolutionary united front based on the worker-peasant alliance under the leadership of the working class.

      The conclusion drawn by the Political Bureau of the Indonesian Communist Party concerning the "Three Banners" conforms with Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tse-tung's thought, and will play an important guiding role in the Indonesian revolution.

      The road pioneered by Comrade Mao Tse-tung for the Chinese revolution is the road by which "political power grows out of the barrel of a gun", (1) the road of relying on the peasants, establishing rural revolutionary bases, encircling the cities from the rural areas and finally capturing the cities.

      Summing up the experience of the Chinese revolution, Comrade Mao Tse-tung says:

          We have had much valuable experience. A well-disciplined Party armed with the theory of Marxism-Leninism, using the method of self-criticism and linked with the masses of the people; an army under the leadership of such a Party; a united front of all revolutionary classes and all revolutionary groups under the leadership of such a Party-these are the three main weapons with which we have defeated the enemy. They distinguish us from our predecessors. Relying on them, we have won basic victory. (2)

      In the course of leading the Chinese people's struggle to seize political power, the Chinese Communist Party has had great victories in the revolution as well as serious defeats. The Party's defeats and victories, its retreats and advances, its shrinking and growth, its development and consolidation, are all closely linked with whether or not the Party's political line correctly handles the questions of armed struggle and the united front. Armed struggle and the united front are the two basic weapons for conquering the enemy. The united front is a united front for carrying out armed struggle. The Party organization is the heroic fighter wielding these two weapons. Such is how these three are interrelated.

      Comrade Mao Tse-tung says: "Having a correct grasp of these three questions [the united front, armed struggle and Party building - Tr.] and their interrelations is tantamount to giving correct leadership to the whole Chinese revolution." (3)

      At present, the white terror in all its severity continues to reign over Indonesia. The Indonesian Communist Party is faced with an extremely difficult and complex task. The Party's struggle is undergoing a major change: a switch from the cities to the countryside, from peaceful struggle to armed struggle, from legal to illegal, from open to secret. For a Party, whose main work over a long period of time was open and legal activity in the cities, this change is not easy indeed. It is bound to meet many difficulties. But the objective realities of the revolutionary struggle compel people to make the change and compel them to learn armed struggle, and there is no alternative for them but to master it. In fact, as long as they are resolute and surmount all difficulties, there is no doubt that they can do so.

      Comrade Mao Tse-tung says:

          A revolutionary war is a mass undertaking; it is often not a matter of first learning and then doing, but of doing and then learning, for doing is itself learning. There is a gap between the ordinary civilian and the soldier, but it is no Great Wall, and it can be quickly closed, and the way to close it is to take part in revolution, in war. (4)

      We are convinced that the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists, guided by the invincible Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tse-tung's thought, will surmount obstacle after obstacle, effect this historic change and lead the Indonesian people on to the long march for winning victory in the revolution.

      The Chinese Communist Party and the Chinese people constantly have the fight of the Indonesian Communist Party and the Indonesian people in mind. Our hearts are closely linked with the hearts of our class brothers in Indonesia. We stand unflinchingly on the side of the Indonesian Communist Party, on the side of the Indonesian revolutionary people, and firmly support the Indonesian Communist Party in leading the Indonesian people's struggle to overthrow the Suharto-Nasution fascist regime and establish a completely independent and democratic new Indonesia.

      Comrade Mao Tse-tung says,

          The unbridled violence of all the forces of darkness, whether domestic or foreign, has brought disaster to our nation; but this very violence indicates that while the forces of darkness still have some strength left, they are already in their death throes, and that the people are gradually approaching victory. (5)

      As the documents of the Political Bureau of the Indonesian Communist Party well express, the present military dictatorship of the Right-wing generals and the U.S. imperialists, who support this reactionary regime, are all paper tigers. In appearance they are terrifying, but in reality they are weak.

      Dark clouds cannot long obscure the sun whose resplendent light will surely shine over the whole of Indonesia. Final victory will certainly belong to the Communist Party of Indonesia and to the Indonesian people.

      (Bold-face emphases and quotation marks are in the original.)

References in the Hongqi Editorial

1) Mao Tse-tung, "Problems of War and Strategy", Selected Works, Vol. II, Foreign Languages Press, Peking, 1965, p. 224.

2) Mao Tse-tung, "On the People's Democratic Dictatorship", Selected Works, FLP, 1961, Vol. IV, p. 422.

3) Mao Tse-tung, "Introducing The Communist", Selected Works, FLP, 1965, Vol. 11, p. 288.

4) Mao Tse-tung, "Problems of Strategy in China's Revolutionary War", Selected Works, FLP, 1965, Vol. 1, p. 190.

5) Mao Tse-tung, "On New Democracy", Selected Works, FLP, 1965, Vol. 11, pp. 377-78.


Statement by the Political Bureau of the Central
Committee of the Indonesian Communist Party
(Excerpts)
August 17, 1966

      A statement issued by the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Indonesia (P.K.I.) on August 17, 1966, appeared in the first issue of Indonesian Tribune published in November 1966. It was entitled "Take the Road of Revolution to Realize the Tasks Which Should Have Been Accomplished by the 1945 August Revolution".

      The statement points out that the Indonesian people observe the 21st anniversary of the outbreak of the 1945 August Revolution in a situation when the counter-revolutionaries headed by the Right-wing army generals Suharto and Nasution rule over the country. During this period of almost one year, modern Indonesian history has never witnessed such a rampant counter-revolutionary terror, whose barbarism is comparable only to that of Hitlerite Nazism, as has been unleashed by the forces headed by the reactionary generals in the army. Nevertheless, no matter how vicious and barbarous the counter-revolutionaries have run amok, they will never succeed in suppressing the revolutionary elan of the working class, the peasantry and other driving forces of the revolution.

      Step by step, the revolutionaries and the democrats are reorganizing themselves and waging a resistance struggle against the military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals Suharto and Nasution. All of this has been accomplished under the most difficult and grave conditions, under the threat of incessant terror. How unbreakable is the revolutionary spirit of the Indonesian people!

      The P.K.I., which by virtue of historical necessity occupies the position as vanguard of the working class and all revolutionary forces in Indonesia, not only is rebuilding its organization from the serious damage it has suffered, but due to the practising of criticism and self-criticism within the leadership and within the whole Party, it is returning to the correct road, the road of revolution which is illuminated by Marxism-Leninism.

Why Has the August Revolution of 1945 Failed to Achieve Its Objective Goal?

      Based on objective conditions, Indonesia at the time of the outbreak of the revolution was a colonial and semi-feudal country, and therefore the 1945 August Revolution (1) has the character of a bourgeois-democratic revolution having the double tasks, to drive away imperialism from Indonesia, in order to liberate the whole nation, and to realize democratic reforms, that is to say, to liquidate entirely the remnants of feudalism, in order to liberate the peasants from the feudal oppression of foreign and native landlords.

      The statement indicates that the 1945 August Revolution is part of the world proletarian socialist revolution. It was a new-type bourgeois-democratic revolution. The complete victory of a new-type bourgeois-democratic revolution will provide the conditions for socialist revolution. Consequently, the perspective of the 1945 August Revolution is socialism and communism.

      The driving forces of the 1945 August Revolution are the working class or the proletariat, the peasantry and the petty bourgeoisie outside the peasantry. The anti-imperialist character of the 1945 August Revolution, which manifested itself very clearly at the start of the revolution, has made it possible for the mobilization of the very broad strata of the Indonesian population. Apart from the national bourgeoisie which, to a certain degree, adopted an anti-imperialist and anti-feudal stand, other patriotic elements, including even patriotic landlords, had taken part in or contributed to the war of independence against the Dutch imperialists.

      The statement says that the experience of the 1945 August Revolution has shown that the P.K.I. as the vanguard of the Indonesian working class did not succeed as yet in taking up its place as the leader of the struggle for emancipation of the Indonesian people. The P.K.I. entered the 1945 August Revolution without adequate preparations. Its serious shortcoming in theory and its lack of understanding of the concrete conditions of Indonesian society had resulted in its inability to formulate the nature of the revolution, its tasks, its programme, tactics and slogans, as well as the correct principles and forms of organization. The high reputation the P.K.I. enjoyed in the eyes of the Indonesian people had been earned through its heroism in fighting imperialism during the time of Dutch colonial domination and of the fascist Japanese occupation. Nevertheless, this high reputation of the P.K.I. had failed to establish the P.K.I. leadership in the August Revolution of 1945.

      This theoretical shortcoming and inability to make a concrete analysis of the concrete situation of the world and of Indonesia had resulted in that the P.K.I. was unable to make use of this highly favourable opportunity given by the August Revolution of 1945 to overcome its shortcomings. The P.K.I. did not consistently lead the armed struggle against Dutch imperialism, did not develop guerrilla warfare that was integrated with the democratic movement of the peasants, thus winning their full support, as the only way to defeat the war of aggression launched by the Dutch imperialists. On the contrary, the P.K.I. even approved of and itself followed the policy of reactionary compromises of Sjahrir's Right-wing socialists. The P.K.I. did not establish the alliance of the working class and the peasantry by leading the anti-feudal struggle in the countryside, and did not establish, on the basis of such a worker-peasant alliance, a united front with all other democratic forces. The P.K.I. did not consolidate its strength, on the contrary, it even relegated to the background its own role. These are the reasons why the August Revolution of 1945 did not proceed as it should, did not achieve the decisive victory, and finally failed in reaching its objective goal.

The Main Problem of Every Revolution Is The Problem of State Power

      The statement declares that it is an absolute condition for every revolutionary, and even more so for every Communist, to grasp the truth that "the main problem of every revolution is the problem of state power".

      The oppressed classes, in liberating themselves from exploitation and oppression, have no other way but to make a revolution, that is to say, overthrowing by force the oppressor classes from state power, or seizing state power by force. Because, the state is an instrument created by the ruling classes to oppress the ruled classes.

      But, for a genuine people's revolution in the present modern era, it is not enough just to wrest the power from the hands of the oppressor classes, and to make use of the power that has been wrested. Marx has taught us that the destruction of the old military-bureaucratic state machine is "the prerequisite for every genuine people's revolution" (Lenin, State and Revolution). A genuine people's revolution will achieve decisive victory only after it has accomplished this prerequisite, while at the same time it sets up a completely new state apparatus whose task is to suppress by force and mercilessly the resistance put up by the overthrown oppressor classes.

      What should the August Revolution of 1945 have done with regard to the state power?

      As a prerequisite, the August Revolution of 1945 should have smashed the colonial state machine along with all of its apparatuses that had been established to maintain colonial domination of Indonesia, and not merely transferred the power to the Republic of Indonesia. The August Revolution of 1945 should have established a completely new state, a state jointly ruled by all the anti-imperialist and anti-feudal classes under the leadership of the working class. This is what is to be called a people's democratic state.

      The statement points out that due to the absence of the working class' leadership, the Republic of Indonesia was inevitably a state ruled by the bourgeoisie, despite the participation of the proletariat. A state with such a class character can never become an instrument of the 1945 August Revolution. Without the dictatorship of people's democracy, the August Revolution of 1945 did not have an instrument to defeat its enemies, and consequently was unable to accomplish its tasks, namely the complete liquidation of imperialist domination and the remnants of feudalism.

      The Communists' voluntary withdrawal of a cabinet led by themselves in 1948 had opened up the broadest opportunity for the reactionary bourgeoisie led by Muhamad Hatta to make the state power fall into its hands. This reactionary bourgeoisie then betrayed the August Revolution by unleashing white terror, the Madiun affair,(2) as a prelude to the restoration of the Dutch imperialist interests through the conclusion of the despicable agreement of the round-table conference, which turned Indonesia into a semi-colonial and semi-feudal country.

      The statement says that the resurgence of the revolutionary struggle of the Indonesian people in continuing the fight against the oppression by imperialism and the remnants of feudalism after the round-table conference, had gained certain political victories of partial and reform nature, which had led to the lessening of the anti-democratic character of the bourgeois power.

      It was a great mistake to assume that the existence of such a government signified a fundamental change in the class character of the state power. It was equally incorrect to assume that the above-mentioned facts marked the birth and the development of an aspect representing the interests of the people, or of a pro-people aspect, within the state power. Such an error, that was formulated in the "theory of two aspects in state power", led to the conclusion that according to the before-mentioned facts, within the state power of the Republic of Indonesia there existed two aspects, the "anti-people aspect" consisting of comprador, bureaucrat capitalist and landlord classes on the one hand, and the "pro-people aspect" composed mainly of the national bourgeoisie and the proletariat on the other hand.

      According to this "two-aspect theory", a miracle could happen in Indonesia, namely that the state could cease to be an instrument of the ruling oppressor classes to subjugate other classes, but it could be made an instrument shared by both the oppressor classes and the oppressed classes. And the fundamental change in state power, that is to say, the birth of a people's power, could be peacefully accomplished by developing the "pro-people aspect" and gradually liquidating the "anti-people aspect".

      The statement points out that hoping for a fundamental change in state power, to usher the people into the position of power, through the victory of the "pro-people aspect" over the "anti-people aspect" in line with the "theory of two aspects in state power", was but a pure illusion. The people will be able to gain power only through an armed revolution under the leadership of the working class to overthrow the power of the comprador bourgeoisie, the bureaucrat capitalists and the landlords which represent the interests of imperialism and the remnants of feudalism.

      The "theory of two aspects in state power" has in practice deprived the proletariat of its independence in the united front with the national bourgeoisie, dissolved the interests of the proletariat in that of the national bourgeoisie, and placed the proletariat in a position as a tail-end of the national bourgeoisie.

      To return the proletariat to its position of leadership in the liberation struggle of the Indonesian people, it is absolutely necessary to rectify the mistake of the "theory of two aspects in state power", and to do away with the erroneous view with regard to Marxist-Leninist teaching on state and revolution.

The Road To a Completely Independent and Democratic New Indonesia

      The statement says that after the August Revolution of 1945, Indonesia has not become a completely independent country, but is still a semi-colonial and semi-feudal country. The power is not in the hands of the people, but in the hands of the upper stratum of the bourgeois and landlord classes. Only a handful of Indonesians from among the ruling classes have enjoyed the fruits of independence, while the people, especially the workers and the peasants who paid the greatest sacrifices during the 1945 August Revolution, still live under the exploitation and oppression by imperialism and the remnants of feudalism, and therefore are still far away from independence and liberation.

      The rule of the military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals Suharto and Nasution and their accomplices, a rule of the bureaucrat-capitalist, the comprador and landlord classes, far from reducing the exploitation of the Indonesian people by imperialism and the remnants of feudalism, will only intensify this exploitation further.

      As facts have proven, in order to establish their dictatorship over the Indonesian people, the Right-wing army generals Suharto and Nasution and their accomplices are completely relying on the "aid" from the imperialist countries headed by the United States. In Indonesia, under the rule of the military dictatorship of Right-wing army generals Suharto and Nasution and their accomplices, and with the help of international imperialism headed by the United States, neo-colonialism is now being built up.

      The statement indicates that the main contradiction in the present Indonesian society is still the same with what existed at the outbreak of the August Revolution of 1945, that is to say, imperialism and the remnants of feudalism are involved in a contradiction with the masses of the people who desire full independence and democracy.

      Thus the target of the revolution remains the same: imperialism and the remnants of feudalism. Classes which are the enemies of the revolution, in the main, are also the same: imperialism, the compradors, the bureaucrat capitalists and the landlords. The driving forces of the revolution, too, are still the same: the working class, the peasantry and the petty bourgeoisie.

      The statement says that after the imperialists no longer directly hold political power in Indonesia, their political interests are represented by the comprador bourgeoisie, the bureaucrat capitalists and the landlords who are holding the state power in their hands.

      Therefore, only by overthrowing the power of the domestic reactionary classes can the overthrow of imperialism and the remnants of feudalism be concretely realized. This is the primary task of the present stage of the Indonesian revolution.

      The statement points out that today, the Indonesian people are faced by the military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals Suharto and Nasution and their accomplices, which is the manifestation of power of the most reactionary classes in our country.

      The absence of democracy for the people, and the suppression by force of arms of every revolutionary and democratic movement, inevitably compel the whole people to take up arms in order to defend their rights. The armed struggle of the people against the armed counter-revolution is unavoidable and constitutes the chief form of struggle of the coming revolution. Only by taking the road of armed struggle, the Indonesian people will succeed in overthrowing the power of the armed counter-revolutionaries, as a precondition to realize their aspiration for which they have fought for scores of years: independence and freedom.

      The statement maintains that the armed struggle to defeat armed counter-revolution, as a revolution, must not be waged, in the form of military adventurism, in the form of a putsch, which is detached from the awakening of the popular masses.

      The statement emphasizes that since the present stage of the Indonesian revolution is essentially an agrarian revolution by the peasantry, the armed struggle of the Indonesian people, too, essentially will be the armed struggle of the peasants to liberate themselves from the oppression by the remnants of feudalism. The armed struggle against the armed counter-revolution can never be lasting and in the end will surely be defeated, unless it is essentially an armed struggle of the peasants in realizing the agrarian revolution. And the armed struggle of the peasants to realize the agrarian revolution will only succeed in achieving a complete victory, and in really liberating the peasantry from the oppression by the remnants of feudalism, only when it is waged under the leadership of the proletariat, and when it is not limited to just overthrowing the power of the landlords in the countryside, but is aimed at smashing the entire power of the internal counter-revolutionaries who are now represented by the military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals Suharto and Nasution and their accomplices.

Conclusions

      The statement says that by studying once more the basic problems of the August Revolution of 1945, we can draw some conclusions which are of the greatest importance for the Indonesian proletariat and its vanguard, the P.K.I., in facing their future task.

      1. The August Revolution of 1945, as a new-type bourgeois-democratic revolution whose mission is to completely liquidate the domination of imperialism and the remnants of feudalism, would have achieved victory only if it was led by the proletariat. In order to establish its leadership in the new-type bourgeois-democratic revolution the proletariat should, above all, form an alliance with the peasantry, and on the basis of this worker-peasant alliance that is led by the working class, establish a revolutionary united front with all other revolutionary classes and groups. The proletariat can fulfil its mission as the leader of the revolutionary united front only when it has correct programme and tactics which are acceptable to its allies to be the guidance for the revolution, only when it has a strong organization, and only when it gives an example in the realization of national tasks. As for the correct programme, it is of the utmost importance to have a revolutionary agrarian programme to forge the alliance of the working class and the peasantry. As for the correct tactics, it is of the utmost importance to master the chief form of struggle, namely the armed struggle which relies on the support of the peasantry. All of this can be realized only when the proletariat has its own political party, the P.K.I., which is entirely guided by the revolutionary Marxist-Leninist theory, and free from all kinds of opportunism.

      2. The pre-condition for the complete realization of the task of the 1945 August Revolution instead of merely seizing the state power from foreign imperialism, and transferring it to the Republic of Indonesia, should be the smashing of the whole machinery of the colonial regime and establishment of a completely new state, namely the dictatorship of people's democracy, the joint power of all anti-imperialist and anti-feudal classes under the leadership of the working class. The dictatorship of people's democracy, as an instrument of the new-type bourgeois-democratic revolution, should suppress by force of arms and mercilessly all the enemies of the revolution, and ensure for the people the broadest democratic rights.

      3. The emancipation of the Indonesian people from exploitation and oppression by imperialism and the remnants of feudalism can be attained only through the road of revolution which will surely take place once again, a revolution that has the same character as the 1945 August Revolution, that is to say a new-type bourgeois-democratic revolution. The primary task of the coming revolution is the destruction of the power of the internal counter-revolutionaries who are now represented by the military dictatorship of the Right-wing generals Suharto and Nasution, and their accomplices, through an armed struggle. The armed struggle to defeat the armed counter-revolution will be victorious only when it is essentially an armed struggle of the peasantry to realize the agrarian revolution. And the armed struggle of the peasantry to realize the agrarian revolution will be victorious only when it is waged under the leadership of the proletariat and is aimed at smashing the power of all internal counter-revolutionary forces.

      4. The tasks faced by the Party for leading the people's democratic revolution to victory are:

      First: To continue to rebuild the P.K.I. along the Marxist-Leninist line, to be a Party which is free from all kinds of opportunism and is consistent in fighting against subjectivism and modern revisionism, while at the same time to continue to arouse, organize and mobilize the masses, especially the workers and the peasants.

      Second: To be ready to lead a protracted armed struggle which is integrated with the agrarian revolution of the peasants in the countryside.

      Third: To form a united front of all the forces that are against the military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals Suharto and Nasution, a united front that is based on the alliance of the working class and the peasantry under the leadership of the proletariat. These are the Three Banners of the Party for the people's democratic revolution.

      The statement says that the international proletariat, and all the people who are fighting against imperialism, are the ally of the coming Indonesian revolution. U.S. imperialism, the ringleader of the world counter-revolution, despite the help rendered by the Khrushchovite modern revisionists, is facing an ignominious and inevitable defeat in Vietnam.

      At the end, the statement says that let us, with the firmest determination and by wholeheartedly dedicating our strength and ability, meet the call of the coming task, to overthrow the rule of the military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals Suharto and Nasution, the leaders of the internal counter-revolutionaries, in order to pave the way towards the new Indonesia which is free from the domination of imperialism and the remnants of feudalism.

      (Bold-face emphases and quotation marks are in the original.)


Self-Criticism by the Political Bureau of the Central
Committee of the Indonesian Communist Party
(Excerpts)
September 1966

      Indonesian Tribune published in its January issue (No. 3) the self-criticism adopted by the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Indonesian Communist Party (P.K.I.) in September 1966. The self-criticism is entitled "Build the P.K.I. Along the Marxist-Leninist Line to Lead the People's Democratic Revolution in Indonesia".

      The self-criticism says that the disaster which has caused such serious losses to the P.K.I. and the revolutionary movement of the Indonesian people after the outbreak and the defeat of the September 30th Movement(3) has lifted up the curtain which for a long period has hidden the grave weaknesses of the P.K.I.

      The Political Bureau is aware that it has the greatest responsibility with regard to the grave weaknesses and mistakes of the Party during the period under review. Therefore, the Political Bureau is giving serious attention to and highly appreciates all criticisms from cadres and members of the Party given in a Marxist-Leninist spirit, as well as honest criticism from Party sympathizers that have been expressed in different ways. The Political Bureau is resolved to make self-criticism in a Marxist-Leninist way, putting into practice the teaching of Lenin and the example of Comrade Musso in unfolding Marxist-Leninist criticism and self-criticism.

      The self-criticism says that under the situation where the most vicious and cruel white terror is being unleashed by the military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals Nasution and Suharto, it is not easy to make as complete criticism and self-criticism as possible. To meet the urgent necessity, it is necessary to point out the main issues in the ideological, political and organizational fields, in order to facilitate the study of the weaknesses and mistakes of the Party during the current rectification movement.

      With all modesty and sincerity the Political Bureau presents this self-criticism. The Political Bureau expects all members to take an active part in the discussions of the weaknesses and mistakes of the Party leadership, critically analyse them, and do their utmost to improve this self-criticism of the Political Bureau by drawing lessons from their respective experiences, collectively or individually. The Political Bureau expects all members to take firm hold of the principle: "unity - criticism - unity" and "learning from past mistakes to avoid future ones, and curing the sickness to save the patient, in order to achieve the twofold objective of clarity in ideology and unity among comrades".(4) The Political Bureau is convinced that, by holding firmly to this correct principle, every Party member will take part in the movement to study and surmount these weaknesses and mistakes with the determination to rebuild the P.K.I. along the Marxist-Leninist line, to strengthen communist unity and solidarity, to raise the ideological, political and organizational vigilance, and to heighten the fighting spirit in order to win victory.

The Main Weaknesses in the Ideological Field

      The serious weaknesses and mistakes of the Party in the period after 1951, the self-criticism says, certainly had as their source the weaknesses in ideological field, too, especially among the Party leadership. Instead of integrating revolutionary theories with the concrete practice of the Indonesian revolution, the Party leadership adopted the road which was divorced from the guidance of the most advanced theories. This experience shows that the P.K.I. had not succeeded as yet in establishing a core of leadership that was composed of proletarian elements, which really had the most correct understanding of Marxism-Leninism, systematic and not fragmentary, practical and not abstract understanding.

      During the period after 1951, subjectivism continued to grow, gradually became greater and greater and gave rise to Right opportunism that merged with the influence of modern revisionism in the international communist movement. This was the black line of Right opportunism which became the main feature of the mistakes committed by the P.K.I. in this period. The rise and the development of these weaknesses and errors were caused by the following factors:

      First, the tradition of criticism and self-criticism in a Marxist-Leninist way was not developed in the Party, especially among the Party leadership.

      The rectification and study movements which from time to time were organized in the Party were not carried out seriously and persistently, their results were not summed up in a good manner, and they were not followed by the appropriate measures in the organizational field. Study movements were aimed more at the rank and file, and never at unfolding criticism and self-criticisms among the leadership. Criticism from below far from being carefully listened to, was even suppressed.

      Second, the penetration of the bourgeois ideology along two channels, through contacts with the national bourgeoisie when the Party established a united front with them, and through the bourgeoisification of Party cadres, especially the leadership, after the Party obtained certain positions in governmental and semi-governmental institutions. The increasing number of Party cadres who occupied certain positions in governmental and semi-governmental institutions in the centre and in the regions, created "the rank of bourgeoisified workers" and this constituted "the real channels for reformism". (5) Such a situation did not exist before the August Revolution of 1945.

      Third, modern revisionism began to penetrate into our Party when the Fourth Plenary Session of the Central Committee of the Fifth Congress uncritically approved a report which supported the lines of the 20th Congress of the C.P.S.U., and adopted the line of "achieving socialism peacefully through parliamentary means" as the line of the P.K.I. This "peaceful road", one of the characteristics of modern revisionism, was further reaffirmed in the Sixth National Congress of the P.K.I. which approved the following passage in the Party Constitution: "There is a possibility that a people's democratic system as a transitional stage to socialism in Indonesia can be achieved by peaceful means, in parliamentary way. The P.K.I. persistently strives to transform this possibility into a reality." This revisionist line was further emphasized in the Seventh National Congress of the P.K.I. and was never corrected, not even when our Party was already aware that since the 20th Congress of the C.P.S.U., the leadership of the C.P.S.U. had been following the road of modern revisionism.

      The self-criticism stresses that the experience of the P.K.I. provides the lesson that by criticizing the modern revisionism of the C.P.S.U. leadership alone, it does not mean that the P.K.I. itself will automatically be free from errors of Right opportunism, the same as what the modern revisionists are doing. The experience of the P.K.I. provides the lesson that modern revisionism, the greatest danger in the international communist movement, is also the greatest danger for the P.K.I. For the P.K.I., modern revisionism is not "a latent but not an acute danger", but a concrete danger that has brought great damage to the Party and serious losses for the revolutionary movement of the Indonesian people. Therefore, we must not in any way underestimate the danger of modern revisionism and must wage a resolute and ruthless struggle against it. The firm stand against modern revisionism in all fields can be effectively maintained only when our Party abandons the line of of "preserving friendship with the modern revisionists".

      It is a fact that the P.K.I., while criticizing the modern revisionism of the C.P.S.U. leadership, also made revisionist mistakes itself, because it had revised Marxist-Leninist teachings on class struggle, state and revolution. Furthermore, the P.K.I. leadership not only did not wage a struggle in the theoretical field against other "revolutionary" political thoughts which could mislead the proletariat, as Lenin has taught us to do, but had voluntarily given concessions in the theoretical field. The P.K.I. leadership maintained that there was an identity between the three components of Marxism: materialist philosophy, political economy and scientific socialism, and the so-called "three components of Sukarno's teachings". They wanted to make Marxism, which is the ideology of the working class, the property of the whole nation which includes the exploiting classes hostile to the working class.

The Main Errors in the Political Field

      The self-criticism says that the mistakes of Right opportunism in the political field which are now under discussion include three problems: (1) the road to people's democracy in Indonesia, (2) the question of state power, and (3) the implementation of the policy of the national united front.

      One of the fundamental differences and problems of disputes between Marxism-Leninism and modern revisionism lies precisely in the problem of choosing the road to socialism. Marxism-Leninism teaches that socialism can only be achieved through the road of proletarian revolution and that in the case of colonial or semi-colonial and semi-feudal countries like Indonesia, socialism can only be achieved by first completing the stage of the people's democratic revolution. On the contrary, revisionism dreams of achieving socialism through the "peaceful road".

      During the initial years of this period since 1951, our Party had achieved certain results in the political struggle as well as in the building of the Party. One important achievement of this period was the formulation of the main problems of the Indonesian revolution. It was formulated that the present stage of the Indonesian revolution was a new-type bourgeois democratic revolution, whose tasks were to liquidate imperialism and the vestiges of feudalism and to establish a people's democratic system as a transitional stage to socialism. The driving forces of the revolution were the working class, the peasantry and the petty bourgeoisie: the leading force of the revolution was the working class and the principal mass strength of the revolution was the peasantry. It was also formulated that the national bourgeoisie was a wavering force of the revolution who might side with the revolution to certain limits and at certain periods but who, at other times, might betray the revolution. The Party furthermore formulated that the working class in order to fulfil its obligation as the leader of the revolution, must forge a revolutionary united front with other revolutionary classes and groups based on worker-peasant alliance and under the leadership of the working class.

      However, there was a very important shortcoming which in later days developed into Right opportunism or revisionism, namely, that the Party had not yet come to the clearest unity of minds on the principal means and the main form of struggle of the Indonesian revolution.

      The Chinese revolution, the self-criticism says, has provided the lesson concerning the main form of struggle of the revolution in colonial or semi-colonial and semi-feudal countries, namely, the people's armed struggle against the armed counter-revolution. In line with the essence of the revolution as an agrarian revolution, then the essence of the people's armed struggle is the armed struggle of the peasants in an agrarian revolution under the leadership of the working class. The practice of the Chinese revolution is first and foremost the application of Marxism-Leninism to the concrete conditions of China. At the same time, it has laid down the general law for the revolutions of the peoples in colonial or semi-colonial and semi-feudal countries.

      To achieve its complete victory, it stresses, the Indonesian revolution must also follow the road of the Chinese revolution. This means that the Indonesian revolution must inevitably adopt this main form of struggle, namely, the people's armed struggle against the armed counter-revolution which, in essence, is the armed agrarian revolution of the peasants under the leadership of the proletariat.

      All forms of legal and parliamentary work should serve the principal means and the main form of struggle, and must not in any way impede the process of the ripening of armed struggle.

      The experience during the last fifteen years has taught us that starting from not explicitly denying the "peaceful road" and not firmly holding to the general law of revolution in colonial or semi-colonial and semi-feudal countries, the P.K.I. gradually got bogged down in parliamentary and other forms of legal struggle. The Party leadership even considered this to be the main form of struggle to achieve the strategic aim of the Indonesian revolution. The legality of the Party was not considered as one method of struggle at a given time and under certain conditions, but was rather regarded as a principle, while other forms of struggle should serve this principle. Even when counter-revolution not only has trampled underfoot the legality of the Party, but has violated the basic human rights of the Communists as well, the Party leadership still tried to defend this "legality" with all their might.

      The "peaceful road" was firmly established in the Party when the Fourth Plenary Session of the Central Committee of the Fifth Congress in 1956 adopted a document which approved the modern revisionist line of the 20th Congress of the C.P.S.U. In such a situation, when the revisionist line was already firmly established in the Party, it was impossible to have a correct Marxist-Leninist line of strategy and tactics. The formulation of the main lines of strategy and tactics of the Party started from a vacillation between the "peaceful road" and the "road of armed revolution", in the process of which the "peaceful road" finally became dominant.

      Under such conditions, the General Line of the P.K.I. was formulated by the Sixth National Congress (1959). It reads, "To continue the forging of the national united front, and to continue the building of the Party, so as to accomplish the demands of the August Revolution of 1945." Based on the General Line of the Party, the slogan "Raise the Three Banners of the Party" was decided. These were: (1) the banner of the national united front, (2) the banner of the building of the Party, and (3) the banner of the 1945 August Revolution. The General Line was meant as the road to people's democracy in Indonesia.

      The Party leadership tried to explain that the Three Banners of the Party were the three main weapons to win the people's democratic revolution which, as Comrade Mao Tsetung has said, were "a well-disciplined Party armed with the theory of Marxism-Leninism, using the method of self-criticism and linked with the masses of the people; an army under the leadership of such a Party; a united front of all revolutionary classes and all revolutionary groups under the leadership of such a Party".(6)

      Thus the second main weapon means that there must be a people's armed struggle against armed counterrevolution under the leadership of the Party. The Party leadership tried to replace this with the slogan "Raise the banner of the 1945 August Revolution".

      In order to prove that the road followed was not the opportunist "peaceful road", the Party leadership always spoke of the two possibilities, the possibility of a "peaceful road" and the possibility of a non-peaceful road. They held that the better the Party prepared itself to face the possibility of a non-peaceful road, the greater would be the possibility of a "peaceful road". By doing so the Party leadership cultivated in the minds of Party members, the working class and the masses of the working people the hope for a peaceful road which in reality did not exist.

      In practice, the Party leadership did not prepare the whole ranks of the Party, the working class and the masses of the people to face the possibility of a non-peaceful road. The most striking proof of it was the grave tragedy which happened after the outbreak and the failure of the September 30th Movement. Within a very short space of time, the counter-revolution succeeded in massacring and arresting hundreds of thousands of Communists and non-communist revolutionaries who found themselves in a passive position, paralysing the organization of the P.K.I. and the revolutionary mass organizations. Such a situation surely would never happen if the Party leadership did not deviate from the revolutionary road.

      The Party leadership declared, says the self-criticism, that "our Party must not copy the theory of armed struggle abroad, but must carry out the Method of Combining the Three Forms of Struggle: guerrilla warfare in the countryside (especially by farm labourers and poor peasants) revolutionary actions by the workers (especially transport workers) in cities, and intensive work among the enemy's armed forces". The Party leadership criticized some comrades who, in studying the experience of the armed struggle of the Chinese people, were considered seeing only its similarities with the conditions in Indonesia. On the contrary, the Party leadership put forward several allegedly different conditions that must be taken into account, until they arrived at the conclusion that the method typical to the Indonesian revolution was the "Method of Combining the Three Forms of Struggle".

      To fulfil its heavy but great and noble historical mission, to lead the people's revolution against imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat-capitalism, the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists must firmly reject the revisionist "peaceful road", reject the "theory of the Method of Combining the Three Forms of Struggle", and hold aloft the banner of armed people's revolution. Following the example of the glorious Chinese revolution, the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists must establish revolutionary base areas; they must "turn the backward villages into advanced, consolidated base areas, into great military, political, economic and cultural bastions of the revolution".

      While working for the realization of this most principal question we must also carry out other forms of struggle; armed struggle will never advance without being coordinated with other forms of struggle.
* * * * *

      The line of Right opportunism followed by the Party leadership was also reflected in their attitude with regard to the state, in particular to the state of the Republic of Indonesia, the self-criticism says.

      Based on this Marxist-Leninist teaching on state, the task of the P.K.I., after the August Revolution of 1945 failed, should have been the education of the Indonesian working class and the rest of the working people, so as to make them understand as clearly as possible the class nature of the state of the Republic of Indonesia as a bourgeois dictatorship. The P.K.I. should have aroused the consciousness of the working class and the working people that their struggle for liberation would inevitably lead to the necessity of "superseding the bourgeois state" by the people's state under the leadership of the working class, through a "violent revolution". But the P.K.I. leadership took the opportunist line that gave rise to the illusion among the people about bourgeois democracy.

      The self-criticism says that the climax of the deviation from Marxist-Leninist teaching on state committed by the Party leadership was the formulation of the "theory of the two aspects in the state power of the Republic of Indonesia".

      The "two-aspect theory" viewed the state and the state power in the following way:

          The state power of the Republic, viewed as contradiction, is a contradiction between two opposing aspects. This first aspect is the aspect which represents the interests of the people (manifested by the progressive stands and policies of President Sukarno that are supported by the P.K.I. and other groups of the people). The second aspect is the aspect that represents the enemies of the people (manifested by the stands and policies of the Right-wing forces and die-hards). The people's aspect has now become the main aspect and takes the leading role in the state power of the Republic.

      The "two-aspect theory" obviously is an opportunist or revisionist deviation, because it denies the Marxist-Leninist teaching that "the state is an organ of the rule of a definite class which cannot be reconciled with its antipode (the class opposite to it)". (7) It is unthinkable that the Republic of Indonesia can be jointly ruled by the people and the enemies of the people.

      The self-criticism says that the Party leadership who wallowed in the mire of opportunism claimed that the "people's aspect" had become the main aspect and taken the hegemony in the state power of the Republic. It was as if the Indonesian people were nearing the birth of a people's power. And since they considered that the forces of the national bourgeoisie in the state power really constituted the "people's aspect", the Party leadership had done everything to defend and develop this "people's aspect". The Party leadership had altogether merged themselves in the interests of the national bourgeoisie.

      By considering the national bourgeoisie the "people's aspect" in the state power of the Republic, and President Sukarno the leader of this aspect, the Party leadership erroneously recognized that the national bourgeoisie was able to lead the new-type democratic revolution. This is contrary to historical necessity and historical facts.

      The Party leadership declared that the "two-aspect theory" was completely different from the "theory of structural reform"(8) of the leadership of the revisionist Italian Communist Party. However, the fact is, theoretically or on the basis of practical realities, there is no difference between the two "theories". Both have for their starting point the "peaceful road" to socialism. Both dream of a gradual change in the internal balance of forces in the state power. Both reject the road of revolution and both are revisionist.

      The anti-revolutionary "two-aspect theory" glaringly exposed itself in the statement that "the struggle of the P.K.I. with regard to the state power is to promote the pro-people aspect so as to make it bigger and dominant, and the anti-people force can be driven out from the state power".

      The Party leadership even had a name for this anti-revolutionary road; they called it the road of "revolution from above and below". By "revolution from above" they meant that the P.K.I. "must encourage the state power to take revolutionary steps aimed at making the desired changes in the personnel and in the state organs". While by "revolution from below" they meant that the P.K.I. "must arouse, organize and mobilize the people to achieve the same changes". It is indeed an extraordinary phantasy! The Party leadership did not learn from the fact that the concept of President Sukarno on the formation of a co-operation cabinet (the old-type government of national coalition), eight years after its announcement, had not been realized as yet. There was even no sign that it would ever be realized, despite the insistent demands. Let alone a change in the state power!

      The self-criticism stresses that to clean itself from the mire of opportunism, our Party must discard this "theory of two-aspect in the state power" and re-establish the Marxist- Leninist teaching on state and revolution.
* * * * *

      The 5th National Congress of the Party in the main had solved theoretically the problem of the national united front. It formulated that the worker-peasant alliance was the basis of the national united front. With regard to the national bourgeoisie a lesson had been drawn on the basis of the experience during the August Revolution that this class had a wavering character. In a certain situation, the national bourgeoisie took part in the revolution and sided with the revolution, while in another situation they followed in the steps of the comprador-bourgeoisie to attack the driving forces of the revolution and betrayed the revolution (as shown by their activities during the Madiun Provocation and their approval of the Round Table Conference Agreement). Based on this wavering character of the national bourgeoisie, the Party formulated the stand that must be taken by the P.K.I., namely, to make continuous efforts to win the national bourgeoisie over to the side of revolution, while guarding against the possibility of its betraying the revolution. The P.K.I. must follow the policy of unity and struggle towards the national bourgeoisie, the self-criticism says.

      Nevertheless, since the ideological weakness of subjectivism in the Party, particularly among the Party leadership, had not yet been eradicated, the Party was dragged into more and more serious mistakes, to such an extent that the Party lost its independence in the united front with the national bourgeoisie. This mistake had led to the situation in which the Party and the proletariat were placed as the appendage of the national bourgeoisie.

      The self-criticism states that a manifestation of this loss of independence in the united front with the national bourgeoisie was the evaluation and the stand of the Party leadership towards Sukarno. The Party leadership did not adopt an independent attitude towards Sukarno. They had always avoided conflicts with Sukarno and, on the contrary, had greatly over-emphasized the similarities and the unity between the Party and Sukarno. The public saw that there was no policy of Sukarno that was not supported by the P.K.I. The Party leadership went so far as to accept without any struggle the recognition to Sukarno as "the great leader of the revolution" and the leader of the "people's aspect" in the state power of the Republic. In many articles and speeches, the Party leaders frequently said that the struggle of the P.K.I. was based not only on Marxism-Leninism, but also on "the teachings of Sukarno", that the P.K.I. made such a rapid progress because it realized Sukarno's idea of Nasakom unity,(9) etc. Even the concept of the people's democratic system in Indonesia was said to be in conformity with Sukarno's main ideas as expressed in his speech "The birth of Pantjasila"(10) on June 1,1945.

      The self-criticism repudiates the erroneous view that "to implement the Political Manifesto in a consistent manner is the same as implementing the programme of the P.K.I."

      The statement that consistently implementing the Political Manifesto meant implementing the programme of the P.K.I. could only be interpreted that it was not the programme of the P.K.I. that was accepted by the bourgeoisie, but that, on the contrary, it was the programme of the national bourgeoisie which was accepted by the P.K.I., and was made to replace the programme of the P.K.I., it points out.

      The self-criticism says that the abandonment of principle in the united front with the national bourgeoisie had developed even further in the so-called "General Line of the Indonesian Revolution" that was formulated as follows: "With the national united front having the workers and peasants as its pillars, the Nasakom as the core and the Pantjasila as its ideological basis, to complete the national democratic revolution in order to advance towards Indonesian Socialism." This so-called "General Line of the Indonesian Revolution" had not even the faintest smell of the revolution. Because, from the three preconditions to win the revolution, namely, a strong Marxist-Leninist Party, a people's armed struggle under the leadership of the Party, and a united front, only the united front was retained. Even then, it was not a revolutionary united front, because it was not led by the working class, nor was it based on the alliance of the working class and the peasantry under the leadership of the working class, but on the contrary it was based on the Nasakom.

      The Party leadership said that "the slogan for national co-operation with the Nasakom as the core will by no means obscure the class content of the national united front". This statement is incorrect. The class content of the Nasakom was the working class, the national bourgeoisie, and even elements of the compradors, the bureaucrat-capitalists and the landlords. Obviously, putting the Nasakom in the core not only meant obscuring the class content of the national united front, but radically changing the meaning of the revolutionary national united front into an alliance of the working class with all other classes in the country, including the reactionary classes, into class collaboration.

      This error must be corrected. The Party must throw to the dust-bin the erroneous "General Line of the Indonesian Revolution" and return to the correct conception of a revolutionary national united front based on the alliance of the workers and peasants under the leadership of the working class.

      The abandonment of principle in the united front with the national bourgeoisie was also the result of the Party's inability to make a correct and concrete analysis of the concrete situation, the self-criticism says.

      The self-criticism points out that ever since the failure of the August Revolution of 1945, except in West Irian, the imperialists did not hold direct political power in Indonesia. In Indonesia, political power was in the hands of compradors and landlords who represented the interests of imperialism and the vestiges of feudalism. Besides, there was no imperialist aggression in Indonesia taking place. Under such a situation, provided that the P.K.I. did not make political mistakes, the contradiction between the ruling reactionary classes and the people would develop and sharpen, constituting the main contradiction in Indonesia. The primary task of the Indonesian revolution is the overthrow of the rule of the reactionary classes within the country who also represent the interests of the imperialists, in particular the United States imperialists. Only by taking this road can the real liquidation of imperialism and the vestiges of feudalism be realized.

      By correcting the mistakes made by the Party in the united front with the national bourgeoisie it does not mean that now the Party need not unite with this class. On the basis of the worker-peasant alliance under the leadership of the working class, our Party must work to win the national bourgeois class over to the side of the revolution.

The Main Mistakes in the Organizational Field

      The self-criticism says that the erroneous political line which dominated the Party was inevitably followed by an equally erroneous organizational line. The longer and the more intensive the wrong political line ruled in the Party, the greater were the mistakes in the organizational field, and the greater the losses caused by them. Right opportunism which constituted the wrong political line of the Party in the period after 1951 had been followed by another Right deviation in the organizational field, namely, liberalism and legalism.

      The line of liberalism in the organizational field manifested itself in the tendency to make the P.K.I. a Party with as large a membership as possible, a Party with a loose organization, which was called a mass Party.

      It says that the mass character of the Party is not determined above all by the large membership, but primarily by the close ties linking the Party and the masses, by the Party's political line which defends the interests of the masses, or in other words by the implementation of the Party's mass line. And the mass line of the Party can only be maintained when the prerequisites determining the Party's role as the advanced detachment are firmly upheld, when the Party members are made up of the best elements of the proletariat who are armed with Marxism-Leninism. Consequently, to build a Marxist-Leninist Party which has a mass character is impossible without giving primary importance to Marxist-Leninist education.

      The self-criticism points out that during the last few years, the P.K.I. had carried out a line of Party building which deviated from the principles of Marxism-Leninism in the organizational field.

      The self-criticism says that this liberal expansion of Party membership could not be separated from the political line of the "peaceful road". The large membership was intended to increase the influence of the Party in the united front with the national bourgeoisie. The idea was to effect the gradual change in the balance of forces that would make it possible to completely defeat the die-hard forces, with a Party that was growing bigger and bigger, in addition to the continued policy of unity with the national bourgeoisie.

      The stress was no longer laid on the education and the training of Marxist-Leninist cadres to prepare them for the revolution, for work among the peasants in order to establish revolutionary bases, but on the education of intellectuals to serve the needs of the work in the united front with the national bourgeoisie, and to supply cadres for the various positions in the state institutions that were obtained thanks to the co-operation with the national bourgeoisie. The slogan of "total integration with the peasants" had become empty talk. What was being done in practice was to draw cadres from the countryside to the cities, from the regions to the centre, instead of sending the best cadres to work in the rural areas.

      To raise the prestige of the P.K.I. in the eyes of the bourgeoisie, and to make it respected as the Party of intellectuals, the 4-Year Plan stipulated that all cadres of the higher ranks must obtain academic education, cadres of the middle ranks high school education, and cadres of the lower ranks lower middle school education. For this purpose the Party had set up a great number of academies, schools and courses. So deep-rooted was the intellectualism gripping the Party leadership that all Party leaders and prominent figures of the popular movements were obliged to write four theses in order to obtain the degree of "Marxist Scientists".

      The deeper the Party was plunged into the mire of opportunism and revisionism, the greater it lacked organizational vigilance and the more extensively legalism developed in the organization. The Party leadership had lost its class prejudice towards the falsehood of bourgeois democracy. All the activities of the Party indicated as if the "peaceful road" was an inevitable certainty. The Party leadership did not arouse the vigilance of the masses of Party members to the danger of the attacks by the reactionaries who were constantly on the look for the chance to strike. Due to this legalism in the organizational field, within a short span of time counter-revolution has succeeded in paralysing the P.K.I. organizationally.

      Liberalism in organization had destroyed the principle of internal democracy in the Party, destroyed collective leadership and had given rise to personal leadership and personal rule, to autonomism.

      In a situation when liberalism dominated the organizational line of the Party, it was impossible to realize the Party's style of work "to combine theory and practice, to keep close bonds with the masses and to conduct self-criticism". It was equally impossible to realize the method of leadership whose essence is the unity of the leadership and the masses; to realize it the leadership must give an example to the rank-and-file.

      The self-criticism points out that thus, in general the wrong political line which ruled in the Party was followed by the wrong line in the organizational field which violated the principles of a Marxist-Leninist Party, destroyed the organizational foundation of the Party, namely, democratic centralism, and trampled on the Party's style of work and method of leadership.

      The self-criticism emphatically points out that to build the P.K.I. as a Marxist-Leninist Party, we must thoroughly uproot liberalism in the organizational field and its ideological source. The P.K.I. must be rebuilt as a Lenin-type Party, a Party that will be capable of fulfilling its role as the advanced detachment and the highest form of class organization of the Indonesian proletariat, a Party with a historical mission of leading the masses of the Indonesian people to win victory in the anti-imperialist, anti-feudal and anti-bureaucrat-capitalist revolution, and to advance towards socialism. Such a Party must fulfil the following conditions: Ideologically, it is armed with the theory of Marxism-Leninism, and free from subjectivism, opportunism and modern revisionism; politically, it has a correct programme which includes a revolutionary agrarian programme, has a thorough understanding of the problems of the strategy and tactics of the Indonesian revolution, masters the main form of struggle, namely, the armed struggle of the peasants under the leadership of the proletariat, as well as other forms of struggle, is capable of establishing a revolutionary united front of all anti-imperialist and anti-feudal classes based on the worker-peasant alliance under the leadership of the working class; organizationally, it is strong and has a deep root among the masses of the people, consists of trustworthy, experienced and steeled Party members who are models in the implementation of the national tasks.

      Today, we are rebuilding our Party under the reign of counter-revolutionary white terror which is most cruel and ferocious. The legality of the Party and the basic human rights of the Communists have been wantonly violated. The Party, therefore, has to be organized and has to work in complete illegality. While working in complete illegality, the Party must be adept at utilizing to the full all possible opportunities to carry out legal activities according to circumstances, and to choose ways and means that are acceptable to the masses with the aim of mobilizing the masses for struggle and leading this struggle step by step to a higher stage.

      The self-criticism stresses that in rebuilding the P.K.I. along the Marxist-Leninist line, the greatest attention should be devoted to the building of Party organizations in the rural areas, to the establishment of revolutionary bases.

      The task to rebuild a Marxist-Leninist Party as has been stated above requires arduous and protracted work, and is full of danger, and consequently it must be carried out courageously, perseveringly, carefully, patiently and persistently.

The Way Out

      The self-criticism says that once we know the weaknesses and mistakes of the Party during the period after 1951 as have been explained above, obviously what we have to do is to realize the most urgent tasks faced by the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists at the present time, the first one being the rebuilding of the P.K.I. as a Marxist-Leninist Party which is free from subjectivism, opportunism and modern revisionism.

      To rebuild the P.K.I. as such a Marxist-Leninist Party, Party cadres of all levels and then all Party members must reach a unanimity of mind with regard to the mistakes made by the Party in the past, as well as concerning the new road that must be taken.

      In order to reach unanimity of mind, a rectification movement must be carried out in the whole Party. Through this rectification movement we will remould the erroneous ideas of the past into correct ideas. In order to advance along the new road, it is absolutely necessary to abandon the wrong road.

      Under the present situation, it will not be easy to come to unanimity of mind concerning all past mistakes down to the minutest details. But, what is absolutely necessary is unanimity of mind regarding the fundamental problems raised in this self-criticism.

      The self-criticism says that the opportunist and revisionist mistakes in the political and organizational fields made by our Party which have been subjected to this criticism were not merely the outcome of the social and historical conditions during the last decade, but could be traced farther back in the social and historical conditions since the founding of our Party. We must, therefore, get rid of the notion that everything will be all right once we have made the present criticism and self-criticism. So long as the ideology of subjectivism is not completely eradicated from the Party, or worse still, if it is still to be found among the Party leadership, then our Party will not be able to avoid other mistakes of Right or "Left" opportunism because, if such is the case, our Party will not be able to analyse the political situation correctly, and consquently will not be able to give correct directives on work. It is above all the task of the leadership and the central cadres, and then of the regional leadership and cadres at all levels to combat subjectivism persistently and wholeheartedly.

      Subjectivism can be effectively combated and liquidated when the ability of the whole Party to distinguish proletarian ideology from the ideology of the petty bourgeoisie is raised, and when criticism and self-criticism is encouraged. To raise the ability of the whole Party to distinguish proletarian ideology from the ideology of the petty bourgeoisie will be possible only by intensifying the education of Marxism-Leninism. The Party must educate its members to apply the Marxist-Leninist method in analysing the political situation and in evaluating the forces of the existing classes, so that subjective analysis and evaluation can be avoided. The Party must draw the attention of the members to the importance of investigation and study of social and economic conditions, in order to be able to define the tactics of struggle and the corresponding method of work. The Party must help the members to understand that without an investigation of the actual conditions they will get bogged down in phantasy.

      The self-criticism emphatically points out that the experience of the struggle waged by the Party in the past has shown how indispensable it is for the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists, who are resolved to defend Marxism-Leninism and to combat modern revisionism, to study not only the teachings of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin, but also to devote special attention to studying the Thought of Mao Tsetung who has succeeded in brilliantly inheriting, defending and developing Marxism-Leninism to its peak in the present era.

      The P.K.I. will be able to hold aloft the banner of Marxism-Leninism, only when it takes a resolute stand in the struggle against modern revisionism which today is centred around the leading group of the C.P.S.U. The fight against modern revisionism cannot be consistently carried out while, at the same time, preserving friendship with the modern revisionists. The P.K.I. must abandon the wrong attitude it held in the past with regard to the question of the relations with the modern revisionists. Loyalty to proletarian internationalism can only be manifested by a merciless stand in the struggle against modern revisionism, because modern revisionism has destroyed proletarian internationalism, and betrayed the struggle of the proletariat and the oppressed people all over the world.

      In rebuilding the Party, the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists must devote their attention to the creation of the conditions to lead the armed agrarian revolution of the peasants that will become the main form of struggle to win victory for the people's democratic revolution in Indonesia. This means that the greatest attention should be paid to the rebuilding of Party organizations in the rural areas. The greatest attention must be paid to the solution of the problem of arousing, organizing and mobilizing the peasants in an anti-feudal agrarian revolution. The integration of the Party with the peasants, in particular with farm labourers and poor peasants, must be conscientiously carried out. Because, only through such an integration will the Party be able to lead the peasantry, and the peasantry, for their part, will be capable of becoming the invincible bulwark of the people's democratic revolution.

      As a result of the attacks of the third white terror, Party organizations in the rural areas in general have suffered greater damage. This fact has rendered it more difficult and arduous to work in the countryside. But this does not in any way change the inexorable law that the main force of the people's democratic revolution in Indonesia is the peasantry, and its base area is the countryside. With the most resolute determination that everything is for the masses of the people, the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists will certainly be able to overcome the gravest difficulties. By having the most whole-hearted faith in the masses and by relying on the masses, the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists will certainly be able to transform the backward Indonesian villages into great and consolidated military, political and cultural bastions of the revolution.

      The Indonesian peasants are the most interested in the people's democratic revolution. Because, only this revolution will liberate them from the life of backwardness and inequality as a result of feudal suppression. It is only this revolution that will give them what they have dreamt all their lives and which will give them life: land. That is why the peasants will surely take this road of revolution for land and liberation, no matter how arduous and full of twists and turns this road will be.

      Obviously, the second task of the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists at present is the creation of the necessary conditions for the armed agrarian revolution of the peasants under the leadership of the proletariat. Provided that the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists succeed in arousing, organizing and mobilizing the peasants to carry through an anti-feudal agrarian revolution, the leadership of the working class in the people's democratic revolution and the victory of this revolution are assured.

      However, the Party must continue the efforts to establish a revolutionary united front with other anti-imperialist and anti-feudal classes and groups. Based on the alliance of the working class and the peasantry under the leadership of the proletariat, the Party must work to win over the urban petty bourgeoisie and other democratic forces, and must also work to win over the national bourgeoisie as an additional ally in the people's democratic revolution. The present objective conditions offer the possibility for the establishment of a broad revolutionary united front.

      The military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals Nasution and Suharto is the manifestation of the rule by the most reactionary classes in the country, namely, the comprador-bourgeoisie, the bureaucrat-capitalists and the landlords. The internal reactionary classes under the leadership of the clique of Right-wing army generals exercise dictatorship over the Indonesian people, and act as watch-dogs guarding the interests of imperialism, in particular United States imperialism, in Indonesia. Consequently, the coming into power of the military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals will certainly serve to intensify the suppression and exploitation of the Indonesian people by imperialism and feudalism.

      The military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals represents the interests of only a very small minority who suppresses the overwhelming majority of the Indonesian people. That is why the military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals will certainly meet with resistance from the broad masses of the people.

      Thus, the third urgent task faced by the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists is to establish the revolutionary united front with all anti-imperialist and anti-feudal classes and groups based on the worker-peasant alliance under the leadership of the working class.

      Thus, it has become clear that to win victory for the people's democratic revolution, the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists must hold aloft the Three Banners of the Party, namely:

      The first banner, the building of a Marxist-Leninist Party which is free from subjectivism, opportunism and modern revisionism.

      The second banner, the armed people's struggle which in essence is the armed struggle of the peasants in an anti-feudal agrarian revolution under the leadership of the working class.

      The third banner, the revolutionary united front based on the worker-peasant alliance under the leadership of the working class.

      The tasks faced by the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists are very arduous. They have to work under the most savage and barbarous terror and persecution which have no parallel in history. However, the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists do not have the slightest doubt that, by correcting the mistakes made by the Party in the past, they are now marching along the correct road, the road of people's democratic revolution. No matter how protracted, tortuous and full of difficulties, this is the only road leading to a free and democratic New Indonesia, an Indonesia that will really belong to the Indonesian people. For this noble cause, we must have the courage to traverse the long road.

      The self-criticism points out that the Indonesian Marxist-Leninists and revolutionaries on the basis of their own experience in struggle, do not have the slightest doubt about the correctness of Comrade Mao Tse-tung's thesis that at "the imperialists and all reactionaries are paper tigers. In appearance they are terrifying, but in reality they are not so powerful. From a long-term point of view, it is not the reactionaries but the people who are really powerful". The military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals which is now in power is also a paper tiger. In appearance they are powerful and terrifying. But in reality they are not so powerful, because they are not supported but on the contrary are opposed by the people, because their ranks are beset by contradictions, and because they are quarrelling among themselves for a bigger share of their plunder and for greater power. The imperialists, in particular the United States imperialists who are the mainstay of the military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals, are also paper tigers. In appearance they are powerful and terrifying, but in reality they are weak and nearing their complete downfall. The weakness of imperialism, in particular United States imperialism, is vividly demonstrated by their inability to conquer the heroic Vietnamese people and to check the tide of the anti-imperialist struggle waged by the people all over the world, including the American people themselves, who are furiously dealing blows at the fortresses of imperialism.

      From a strategic point of view, the imperialists and all reactionaries are weak, and consequently we must despise them. By despising the enemies strategically we can build up the courage to fight them and the confidence to defeat them. At the same time we must take them all seriously, take into full account of their strength tactically, and refrain from taking adventurist steps against them.

      The self-criticism says that today, we are in an era when imperialism is undergoing its total collapse, and socialism is marching forward triumphantly all over the world. No force on earth can prevent the total downfall of imperialism and all other reactionaries, and no force can block the victory of Socialism throughout the world. The military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals, as the watch-dog guarding the interests of the imperialism in Indonesia, is also unable to avert its destruction. The vicious and savage massacre and torture against the hundreds of thousands of Communists and democrats which they are still continuing today, will not be able to prevent the people and the Communists from rising up in resistance. On the contrary, all the brutalities and cruelties will only serve to intensify the tit-for-tat resistance struggle of the people. The Communists will avenge the death of their hundreds of thousands of comrades with the resolve to serve still better the people, the revolution and the Party.

      The Indonesian Marxist-Leninists will spare neither efforts nor energy to fulfil the best wishes of the world Marxist-Leninists by resolutely defending Marxism-Leninism and struggling against modern revisionism, by working still better for the liberation of their people and country, and for the world proletarian revolution.

      The Indonesian Marxist-Leninists who are united in mind and determined to take the road of revolution, by putting their wholehearted faith in the people, by relying on the people, by working courageously, perseveringly, conscientiously, patiently, persistently and vigilantly, will surely be able to accomplish their historical mission, to lead the people's democratic revolution, to smash the military dictatorship of the Right-wing army generals and to set up a completely new power, the people's democratic dictatorship. With the people's democratic dictatorship, the joint power of anti-imperialist and anti-feudal classes and groups under the leadership of the working class, the Indonesian people will completely liquidate imperialism and the vestiges of feudalism, build a free and democratic new society, and advance toward Socialism where the suppression and exploitation of man by man no longer exists.

      Let us unite closely to take the road of revolution which is illuminated by the teaching of Marxism-Leninism, the road leading to the liberation of the Indonesian people and proletariat, the road leading to Socialism.

      (Bold-face emphases and quotation marks are in the original.)


Explanatory Notes

1) "The August Revolution of 1945": On August 17, 1945 Sukarno, Hatta, and others declared Indonesia a Republic and launched the Indonesian "revolution." This "revolution" in effect was the transformation of Indonesia, which was an outright colony of Holland before World War II, into a neocolony with the U.S. as the main imperialist overlord.

2) "The Madiun Affair": A "military revolt" which led to a campaign of brutal suppression against the PKI forces and sympathizers by the Indonesian government in September/October 1948.

3) On October 1, 1965, the September 30 Movement, a group of mid-level officers in the military, kidnapped a number of high-ranking generals of the Indonesian armed forces. The leader of the group said that their aim was to thwart a coup by rightist generals and bring them to account before Sukarno. According to some scholars, the September 30 Movement was infiltrated by agents-provocateurs associated with Suharto. The action by the movement was labeled a PKI "coup attempt," and it served as the immediate pretext for a takeover by a military clique headed by Suharto and Nasution and the massacre of hundreds of thousands.

4) Mao Tsetung, "Our Study and the Current Situation," Selected Works, Vol. III.

5) V.I. Lenin, Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism.

6) Mao Tsetung, "On the People's Democratic Dictatorship," Selected Works, Vol. IV.

7) V.I. Lenin, The State and Revolution.

8) "The theory of structural reform": This refers to the revisionist Italian Communist Party's "theory" of pursuing gradual reforms in the present bourgeois state structure through parliamentary means.

9) Nasakom is an acronym derived from Nasionalis, Agama, Komunis (Nationalism, Religion, Communism). Sukarno put this forward as representing the unity of what he said were the three major groupings in Indonesia: the nationalists, religious believers and the communists.

10) Pantjasila were the five "principles" proclaimed by Sukarno as the basis for the bourgeois state of Indonesia: belief in God, nationalism, humanism, social justice, and people's sovereignty.


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