Fifty Years of the Determined and Successful Work of CPC(M-L)

This coming year we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist). It behooves all progressive forces to deliberate on the kind of party CPC(M-L) is because this is a time when the movements of the people for their rights, for peace, against colonial arrangements and injustice and for anti-imperialist solidarity with the peoples of Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean must be strengthened to realize their aim. For that, capable political leadership is necessary. Already the political character of the struggle is obviously against those state actors and governing forces who are blocking the path to progress by refusing to renew the arrangements to make them consistent with the needs of the times. Instead, they persevere in using state attacks to divide the people, divert their attention from the real problems and how to provide them with solutions. To make headway, it is necessary to join and strengthen the kind of political organization which can turn historic successes into historic victories. In Canada, that organization is CPC(M-L). CPC(M-L)'s partisanship is to the aim of the workers' movement in defence of peace, democracy and rights. It opposes sectarianism and narrow-mindedness under all conditions and circumstances. It is taking all-sided measures to make sure the mass party and non-party press are at the disposal of the working people and their need to create enlightened public opinion which favours their just cause.

Fifty years ago in December, in Vancouver, an important conference was held which completed the work to lay the foundations of CPC(M-L) which was founded three months later. CPC(M-L) was a new Party in every sense -- a Party dedicated to the cause of revolution and socialism, a party of the working class, its vanguard. The strengthening of the foundations of the Party was the most difficult task at that time, as it has always been and remains so today as we take up the challenge to lay the foundations of a new modern mass communist party consistent with the needs today.

As is the case today as we enter the second decade of the 21st century, so too in 1969, on the eve of the decade of the seventies, various pressures were exerted on us so that the workers' movement would not give rise to a political party of its own. We had come to the Vancouver Conference at the end of 1969, the last days of the decade of the sixties, united ideologically and organizationally but great pressure was exerted to not enshrine this unity in a political resolution. If not dealt with appropriately, the pressure, in essence of both an ideological and an organizational character, could seriously impair the functioning of the Party, paralyze it and later lead to its liquidation. At the same time, we could not have agreed that the Party should exist outside the workers' movement, divorced and isolated from everything else, so pure as not to wage any struggle to defend and strengthen itself in the course of waging the mass struggles. This pressure came from different quarters and took many forms. It had to be fought systematically, surely, with confidence in our own forces.

With this in mind, the Political Resolution which took up the conclusions drawn at the Vancouver Conference was written by the third week of January 1970 and sent to all the delegates for study. Because it was the founding resolution of the Party, and as much work had already been accomplished in order to reach warranted conclusions and raise the level of the cadre, the founding resolution was to be studied by each individual for at least six weeks. The reports were received from all the delegates, which were read by a special commission appointed by the Central Organizing Committee and, on the basis of the commission's report, the COC adopted the resolution on March 31. That same day, amidst several hundred sympathizers attending a mass rally held in a building situated at the southeast corner of Park and Bernard in Montreal, the communiqué titled There Is Such a Party! was read out announcing that the Party had been founded. The task set by the Internationalists had been accomplished. The Marxist-Leninist Communist and Workers' Movement in Canada was not to remain the same from that time forward.

Right from its inception, knowing full well that things do not appear ready-made on their own, CPC(M-L) entered into a period of profound all-sided struggle. This is all the more true because the strategic aim of CPC(M-L) is to establish a modern society without exploitation of persons by persons. Such a society has never existed in Canada before, but the material basis for it is present with the widespread socialization of the process of production. Recognizing this, it is to be expected that the obsolescent forces, representing all that is old and dying, with vengeance and brutality seek to crush the new revolutionary forces that are emerging. In this context, CPC(M-L) has developed a broad field of work based on forging a stern resistance movement to these state-organized attacks. Its attitude towards the decision-making power of the state as it presently exists always puts the interests of the working people at the centre of its deliberations so as to open society's path to progress. This is why after 50 years, CPC(M-L) has overcome the many hurdles and strengthened itself as the kind of force the workers and their allies have confidence in and can rely on.

Determined, successful work on the part of CPC(M-L) from the time of its founding enabled it to  set the direction of the communist and workers' movement in Canada anew following the historic shift which took place 35 years ago in 1984-85. At that time, on September 1, 1985, we declared that henceforth, as a result of free trade and globalization, no force could continue to act in the old way. The space which is equivalent to change is based on what the social relations between humans and humans and humans and nature reveal. It belongs to everyone without exception irrespective of what class they belong to or what interests they uphold. We undertook to build the mass Party and mass non-Party press to make sure it is the working class which leads the people to occupy this space for change. This work created the conditions to adopt our nation-building Historic Initiative which we launched on January 1, 1995, 25 years ago, whose main feature is a fully conscious and organized plan to make sure the working class, women and youth develop their independent thinking and politics so that they speak in their own name and lay the claims which they must. This is what it means for the working class to constitute the nation and vest sovereignty in the people.

Comrade Hardial Bains launches the Historic Initiative, Hull, January 1, 1995.

As part of its Historic Initiative, CPC(M-L) carries out extensive theoretical work, elaborating Contemporary Marxist-Leninist Thought, the pro-social program and the necessity for democratic renewal. It has adopted work to educate the educators in a manner that brings the advanced forces together to establish their own vantage points and provide modern definitions which bring forth a modern democratic personality. The theoretical and practical activity of CPC(M-L) encompasses the work to consolidate CPC(M-L) on the basis of democratic centralism which vests the decision-making power in the membership which sets the agenda for the work, works out its implementation and checks up on the results so as to discern the guides to further action.

Organizing the working class to fight for a change in the direction of the economy and to constitute the nation is the order of the day. It requires organizing the people to recognize the need for a modern constitution that enshrines the rights and duties of all citizens and residents, and eliminates privileges and arbitrariness; restoring the hereditary rights of the Indigenous peoples and ending colonial injustice and crimes against them; providing the nation of Quebec and its right to self-determination with due recognition by making sure the federation is voluntary which means it recognizes the right to secede if the Quebec people so desire; supporting the struggle of all national minorities against marginalization and ghettoization and for the development of their languages and cultures; and recognizing the rights of women without exception. So too must the well-being of the most vulnerable and all those who require assistance of any sort whatsoever be provided for. Besides its work to involve the entire polity in humanizing the social environment, CPC(M-L) works to make sure the natural environment is looked after.

All people have rights by virtue of being human, including to a livelihood, education, health care, childcare and seniors' care. Raising the level of society's material well-being and its spiritual health are immediate concerns as a result of the "everyone fend for oneself" anti-social offensive.

CPC(M-L) works hard to bring together all the different threads of the movement which are developing across the country within the present national and international conditions so as to direct them towards opening the path for the progress of society. It is the work to develop the human factor/social consciousness, human sensuous and material action directed towards fully controlling the direction of society and its relationship with nature so as to benefit society and all its members.

During the course of this year, CPC(M-L) plans to engage its members, sympathizers and fellow-travellers in ongoing conversations about the aim of the Historic Initiative and its immediate aim to bring into being a mass communist party consistent with the needs of the people and society for enlightenment and political organization. On the basis of their own thought material, they can make sure a modern democratic personality is brought into being in the form of an anti-war government.

This article was published in

Volume 50 Number 1 - January 1, 2020

Article Link:
Fifty Years of the Determined and Successful Work of CPC(M-L)


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