US communist leader challenged by the Greek communists.
Sam Webb, who chairs the Communist Party, USA published an interesting thinkpiece in the party’s internet magazine Political Affairs with the title ‘A Party of Socialism in the 21st Century’. It is fair to say that this has created a fair degree of controversy within the US party and excited interest without.
Sam Webb is familiar to British communists, not least through his contribution to the Communist University in London. His style is refreshingly unencumbered by jargon and clear enough in its exposition. The problems he identifies are familar to British communists, not least because we too operate in the complex ideological and political conditions of a major imperialist power with our governments engaged in a variety of imperial military expeditions to butress the economic dominance that is now under threat from competing imperialist entities and an insurgent popular movement in many party parts of the world.
The Greek communists are no less direct in their contribution to this discussion and have taken the US communist leadership at its word. Their robust response is carried below.
Position of KKE on the Webb’s Platform and the Developments in the CPUSA
Athens, 13 April 2011
To the members and cadre of the CPUSA, To the workers that struggle in the USA, To the communist and workers parties
In February 2011 the chairperson of the CPUSA, Sam Webb, published an article in Political Affairs, the electronic publication of the CPUSA, entitled “A Party of Socialism in the 21st Century: What It Looks Like, What It Says, and What It Does”. Even if the specific article is accompanied by an editorial note which claims that “The following article represents the views of its author alone. It doesn’t necessarily reflect the official views of any organization or collective.”, it is obvious to us that the public position of the head of a Communist Party concerning such an important issue requires special attention.
On the 16th of February we received a letter from the editorial team of Political Affairs which invited us to send in our opinion.
Our party, after studying this article and the reactions it has provoked within the ranks of communists both in the USA and internationally, considers it necessary to take a public position through this letter, as is required by its responsibility as a part of the international communist movement.
Our assessment is that we are dealing with a comprehensive liquidationist platform of 29 theses which has been placed before the international communist movement and proposes the total revision of the principles and revolutionary traditions of the communist movement.
The KKE, as a section of the international communist movement, considers as its duty the refutation of this platform, which questions the need for the existence of a party of the working class in the USA, and in general is directed against the revolutionary and anti-imperialist movement internationally. The 18th Congress of our party stressed that “The battle against social-democratisation tendencies in Communist Parties – through the intervention of imperialist mechanisms, anti-communism and the bourgeois media – must be fought firmly and consistently by defending the historic role of the working class and its organised vanguard, the principles of Marxism-Leninism and of socialism. This task takes on even greater significance in face of the growing anti-communist offensive in the EU and internationally.”