One Step Forward, Two Steps Back
Georgi Dimitrov (June 18, 1882 – July 2, 1949), the leader of Communist International, had held a meeting with Soviet Leader Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin (December 18, 1878 – March 5, 1953) to build one universal unity against Fascism in 1934. Stalin used to consider the Social Democrats as ‘Social Fascists’… hence, it would not be possible to defeat Fascism without defeating the Social Democrats. Dimitrov as mentioned to the Soviet Strongman that although Social Democracy had given birth to Fascism, the Social Democratic forces and even some Bourgeois Liberal parties were tortured by the Fascists. According to the Bulgarian Politician, these parties, too, could play an important role in triggering the fall of Fascism! He further informed Stalin that a United Front was necessary for Anti-Fascist Unity. Stalin had, at that time, accepted Dimitrov’s arguments!
Unfortunately, the Left Parties in India have seemingly failed to comprehend this Reality. People, across India, have an expectation that the Communist Parties would form an alliance with other Democratic Forces to build a proper United Force against the ruling Right-Wing Government. However, the recently held election in the Eastern Indian Province of Bihar tells a different story. The Socialist Unity Centre of India (Communist) or SUCI(C) fought the election alone. It has actually aided the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP, the ruling party in India) in a way; as the Minority Votes have been divided. One should remember that Fascism wants to strengthen its position by bending the Parliamentary System to its advantages! Therefore, it is necessary to recognise the importance of Electoral Politics as a part of the Anti-Fascist Movement. In India, the Left-oriented Parties have seldom stressed on Unity, but have, seemingly, followed the path of Opportunism. The Communist Party of India (Marxist) or the CPI(M) plans to form alliances with all the parties, including the Indian National Congress (INC), at the National Level to counter the increasing influence of BJP. However, it still considers Trinamool Congress (a Regional Political Party) as its main opponent in Eastern Province of West Bengal (where the CPI(M)-led Left Front had run a Government for 34 years)! Surprisingly, the SUCI(C) was an ally of the Trinamool Congress in West Bengal in the past.
In order to counter Fascism, the Left-oriented Parties should keep a couple of things in mind… Most importantly, what is needed is not just an Electoral Unity, but also the Unity of Combined Ideologies. Unity needs to be built only after identifying the issues, taking into consideration the multidimensional social conditions. Secondly, it should also be realised that Marxism is an ongoing and constantly evolving socio-economic worldview. The facts behind each and every sphere of this worldview are realities. At the same time, one needs to identify the emerging realities, as well! Many changes can be initiated, keeping the socio-economic structure intact. For the Marxists, the basic problem of the Capitalist System remains the same. However, Capitalism has changed a lot in its structure, function and its initial manifestation in the last 200 years. Leaders, like Vladimir Lenin, had developed and enriched Marxism by understanding these changes. He had identified a particularly aggressive form of Capitalism in the Age of Imperialism…
The character of Imperialism has also changed in the last five decades. Fascism, as well, has changed its character! Lenin had warned against the rise of Fascism. Unfortunately, the Italian Communists might not have understood it at that time. As the Parties of the Second International had experienced Revisionism, Racism with a growing Anti-Revolutionary attitude in them; the Social Democrats gave birth to Fascism. That is seemingly why Stalin had no other option, but to oppose the Social Democrats!
Leader of the Third International Nikolai Bukharin (October 9, 1888 – March 15, 1938) called the Social Democrats ‘Social Fascists’ in 1927. No one could underestimate the effectiveness of this view in certain contexts. However, it is also inappropriate to blame one for this. That is why Marxism is an ever-changing worldview! Except Lenin, almost all the Marxists have lacked the sense of this continuity. Others, like Stalin, corrected their mistakes.
In India, the Left parties are basically divided into two types… some of them are not interested in joining hands with Right-Wing or Bourgeois Liberal Parties, while others believe that a long-lasting Anti-Fascist Alliance cannot be formed with the Social Democratic forces. The largest Communist party in India, the CPI(M), is more interested in making electoral compromises than waging a long-term war against Fascism. Their main aim, possibly, is to form the Government in West Bengal, again. Hence, they, naturally, would consider the Trinamool Congress, and not the BJP, as their principle adversary! The CPI(M) is ready to make a Pre-poll Alliance with other Right-Wing forces, including the Indian National Congress, in order to overthrow the Trinamool Congress-led Government in West Bengal. It is to be noted that the CPI(M) had joined hands with the Jana Sangh to create troubles for the Dictatorial Government of former Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in the early 1980’s. Perhaps, this compromise was a necessity in the context of that period of time. In current situation, it may also be necessary for the CPI(M) to make an alliance with the Indian National Congress. Even if one accepts this logic, then also identifying the Trinamool Congress as the main enemy is not a wise decision. The SUCI(C) claims that its main objective is not performing well in elections, but to trigger movements against Fascism. It seems that the SUCI(C) has forgotten Lenin’s teaching. Once, Lenin had mentioned that it would be important to fight elections until a Revolutionary Situation was created! Dimitrov was of the opinion that the Fascism’s Rise to Power is not a common phenomenon. It should not be compared with the formation of a Government by a Bourgeois Party. Instead, it should be considered as a form of maintaining dominance by the Bourgeois Class… or establishing a Terrorist Dictatorship! According to Dimitrov, ignoring this difference means committing suicide.
Therefore, the Indian Communists should understand the fact that they would have to make alliance with all sorts of political organisations, including the Right-Wing parties, Centrist parties, the Minority Groups, etc., in an attempt to defeat the Fascist forces. It is also necessary for the parties, inclined to the Left, to unite on the basis of common programmes. On the basis of that, all the democratic forces – like the Indian National Congress, Trinamool Congress, RJD, SP, BSP – can come together and be represented by a single platform. Otherwise, the fall of Fascism is next to impossible!
Indians are confused and annoyed by the Leftists’ Academic Discourse. However, the Leftists, possibly, do not understand this fact. Perhaps, they do not want to understand this. That is why there are so many Left parties in India. Is it possible to bring forth a proper Revolution in this manner?
You may also like to read: Degeneration
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