The Four Categories of Contradictions

The Four Categories of Contradictions

How should revolutionaries engage with the various contradictions operating in the world?

[From M-L-M Mayhem.]

Recently, a close comrade of mine was recounting a story where he told a younger activist that, although he supported Tamil self-determination he did not whole-heartedly support the LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) because their cultural-nationalist project resulted in the liquidation of numerous leftist Tamil groups (such as supporters of the Ceylon Communist Party (Maoist)).  Unfortunately, the younger activist misunderstood the critique, taking it to mean that my comrade was somehow anti-Tamil self-determination and was incapable of understanding what he was trying to argue.  Conversely, when many of us leftists argue that we support, for example, Hezbollah’s resistance to Israeli imperialism we are often misunderstood as supporting Hezbollah’s political project itself when this is often not the case.

Oft-times many of us still have difficulties thinking through these problems: we understand that imperialism is wrong but we also understand that certain groups also veiled as anti-imperialist possess a political dimension that we, as people against oppression, cannot rightly support.  I want to suggest that the trick of understanding how to understand these problems, however, lies in understanding the four major categories of contradictions that determine the structure of global capitalism.  And so, in my typically blaise manner, I have attempted to simplify and describe these categories.

1.  Contradictions between imperialisms

Although the imperialists want you to believe that every “democratic” country is united in a war against barbarous “terrorism” there is not that much unity.  The favourite corporations of each national market are still competing, especially in this rush to export as much capital into the recently reconquered peripheries.  Blair might have shaken hands with Bush back during the War of Terror glory days, but behind those smiles were neo-colonial considerations that made the handshake more an “enemy-of-my-enemy” kind of thing.  While the other imperialist countries currently have to kiss the ass of the most powerful imperialist country––and the latter is happy that it controls the IMF and WTO––it is not like they’re all BFFs who have sleep overs and text each other every day.

Both World Wars also demonstrated this contradiction category, the realignment of imperialist power happening in both post-war periods: the first much more clearly than the second, but it was the second that assured America’s ascendance as the primary global imperialist power.

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Second Wave Anti-Revisionism and the Native Liberation Struggle

Second Wave Anti-Revisionism and the Native Liberation Struggle

[This 1975 article by the Bolshevik Tendency/Bolshevik Union was republished by the Encyclopedia of anti-Revisionism here and by Rowland Keshena of Speed of Dreams here.  Keshena’s introduction to the article is also included below.]

This is from the magazine Canadian Revolution (No. 4, Novemeber / September 1975), which was part of the second wave of Canadian anti-revisionism, a period in the development and history of Canadian Marxism-Leninism analogous to the New Communist Movement in the United States. It was written by two unnamed members of the Bolshevik Tendency, which would soon after this piece’s publication go on to consolidate themselves as the Bolshevik Union.

The BT/BU began its life as part of the worldwide pro-Chinese movement in the 1960s and 70s, following the rise of revisionism in the Soviet Union under the leadership of Nikita Khrushchev. Following the death of Mao and the coming to power in China of Deng Xiaoping, the BT/BU would go on to side with the Party of Labour in Albania and its leader Enver Hoxha. However, after the Albanians recognized the Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist), whom the BT/BU saw as revisionist, to be their fraternal party, they broke with mainstream anti-revisionism.

This article comes from the period of their alignment with the Maoist movement.

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Basanta: The Volcano of Revolution in South Asia Today

Basanta: The Volcano of Revolution in South Asia Today

The following talk was given on July 2, in Istanbul, during the European Social Forum’s seminar on South Asia’s revolutions.

By Basanta (Indra Mohan Sigdel)
member, Politburo of the Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist)

Dear comrades and delegates, revolutionary greetings!

I would like to take this opportunity to extend our revolutionary salutation on behalf of our party, the Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), to the organiser, the European Social Forum, who invited our party to attend this august programme in Istanbul, Turkey.

In addition, I would like to extend our revolutionary greetings to the entire delegates participating in this seminar. I feel honoured to be here with all the delegates from around the world.

But, more than that I would like to utilise this opportunity to share experiences that the working class all across the world has gathered through their valiant struggles against imperialism and its anti-people and neo-colonial policies like privatisation, liberalisation and globalisation, and as well the ruling classes subservient to it.

Dear comrades,

Our party has assigned me to speak here on the revolution in South Asia as requested by the organisers. It is a vast course, a very difficult task to cover in a few minutes. However, I will try my best to be brief but certainly I will focus on the key points to help you reach to the basic understanding of the possibilities and challenges, the revolution in South Asia is confronting now.

South Asia consists of seven countries namely Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. More than one-fifth of the world’s population inhabit in this region. It is the most populous and densely populated geographical region in the world. Agriculture, which contributes to only 22% of the total GDP of the region, employs 60% of the labour force. Next to Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia is the poorest region on the earth. As per the information provided by the World Bank, in 2008, more than 40% of the people dwelling in this region earn less than 1.39 dollars per head per day. On the other, the total wealth of the 25 richest Indian capitalists is equivalent to 192.3 billions of dollars. [Source:]. It is equal to the total yearly earnings of more than 379 millions of the lowest poor people from this region, which is about 31.6% of the total population of India alone. Around 2.1 million of children die of malnutrition every year in this region as per the report published by UNICEF in 2008. This gives a short glimpse of class composition in the South Asian countries. Continue reading “Basanta: The Volcano of Revolution in South Asia Today”