Self-Criticism by the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Indonesian Communist Party
Self-Criticism by the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Indonesian Communist Party
Self-Criticism by the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Indonesian Communist Party
Self-Criticism by the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Indonesian Communist Party
Source: Peking Review. No. 30, July 21, 1967
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". --Ed.
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 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". 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". 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"
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)". 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" 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, 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" 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.
Posted: 2009-02-21 03:32 |
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