Choice Between Available Models of Revolution

photo of French maoist

From Internationale Situationniste #9 (August 1964).

Submitted by Fozzie on February 14, 2023

Now that Stalinism has split into several rival currents that express the interests of bureaucracies at very different stages of economic and political development (Khrushchev, Mao, Togliatti), the reciprocal accusation are sufficiently revealing — both about those who formulate them and about those they are directed against — to render seemingly impossible any reference to old positions (leftist, revisionist, and so on) of what was formerly the workers' movement because the minimum of cohesion necessary even within a mystification has been lost for too long. China wants atomic weapons, initiates a border conflict with Russia, vies with others for the destruction of Israel, flirts with Pakistan, France, and an Iraq that is simultaneously massacring those sympathetic to Moscow; most incredible, however, is that it has come to terms with the journal Révolution run by Vergès. Russia has already proven itself, as has Togliatti-Ercoli. The equilibrium between all these contenders is in the end the equilibrium of revolutionary falsification extablished for forty years and maintained by the common interests of the two camps. In the same fashion, the falsification was maintained during the era of monolithic Stalinism by the common interest of both the West and the East in proclaiming the East as the only known example of socialist revolution. The West manifested no weakness for the Stalinist revolution except perhaps the fact that it preferred it all the same to true revolution.

The new accusatory article published in Peking to denounce what it calls the "infamous deeds" of the Soviet leaders claims to be the first in a series that will be continued... "And at the critical moment when the Hungarian counter-revolutionaries had occupied Budapest, it (the leadership of the Russian Communist Party) had had the intention, for a while, to adopt a strategy of capitulation and to abandon socialist Hungary to the counter-revolution." If one is to believe the Chinese document it is thanks to the intervention of Peking that the situation in Hungary was rectified and the harder line adopted.

Le Monde, 7-9-63.

At the conference of Afro-Asian solidarity in Algiers... the Chinese diatribe met with the approval of well over one-third of the participants... However, everyone had noticed the absence of any reference to France, whose activity in Gabon was not cited among the recent instances of imperialism in Africa.

Le Monde, 25-3-64.

In an article published by the Communist weekly Rinascita, Mr. [Palmiro] Togliatti writes that Mr. [Pietro] Nenni claims that everything will change in this country [Italy] when the Socialists come to power. "This is a crass and primitive argument," he asserts, "We would go so far as to call such a vision of power 'Stalinist.'"

A.P., Rome, 16-11-63.

Translated by Thomas Levin. From