May Day 1998:
150 Years Since
the Communists' First Call

From the Committee of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement

Revolutionary Worker #956, May 3, 1998

We received this statement which is being distributed by the Information Bureau of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement (RIM):

Since the Communists' first programme, the Communist Manifesto, was written in 1848 and literally haunted the powers of old Europe, the science of revolution has grown by leaps and bounds into Marxism-Leninism-Maoism (MLM) through many struggles and experiences in making revolution. And the basic truths that Karl Marx and Frederick Engels exploded powerfully onto the pages of this historical document of the International Workingmen's Association, the First International, remain as true as ever:

"The Communists disdain to conceal their views and aims. They openly declare that their ends can be attained only by the forcible overthrow of all existing social conditions. Let the ruling classes tremble at a Communist revolution. The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win."

The need for the oppressed and proletarians in each country to form a revolutionary party--a communist party--and to build their unity in the strongest possible way politically and organizationally worldwide against the powers of the old imperialist world and their reactionary states is as urgent today as 150 years ago. This is one of the key tasks of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement (RIM), which groups MLM parties and organizations from around the world.

The imperialists like to talk about the globalization of their system, as though it were all-powerful. Their aims are still basically the same in this modern era--the vicious pursuit to squeeze profits from the labour of the people of the whole globe, increasingly with the bloody signature of a "multinational." But their crisis is also globalized and their empire is full of cracks, many too wide to glue together.

They strutted and crowed about the miracle economies of the Asian Tiger countries, and how the Third World can "get rich quick" under their control. But the true picture of what imperialist "development" offers these countries is the shattered glass showcase of South Korea and the plunging Asian stock markets, which are sending shivers of panic up corporate spines from Tokyo to New York. This is real-life Mafia drama on an imperialist scale. And after the crash, in exchange for more "rescue" funds, South Korea, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines must at knifepoint follow World Bank/IMF-sponsored strangulation measures, drawing them into even greater dependency on imperialism. As the masses in Latin America and Africa have already seen, far from bringing economic security, this means more suffering, poverty, unemployment and the loss of peasant land, while for the rulers it leads to more political instability.

In Eastern Europe and Russia, the cracks in the system are more like huge divides. In the few short years since the collapse of the state capitalist regimes, the masses have come to learn the daily living nightmare of Western-style capitalism.

Politically the imperialists also face growing problems in disinfecting and shoring up their rotting social order. Why is the greatest manufacturer and user of weapons of mass destruction, the U.S. ruling class, talking about bombing a small country like Iraq over weapons inspections? Why are they preparing to attack Iraq a second time if not to tighten their control over the Middle East and edge out their European rivals in the pursuit of oil? Isn't this why the U.S. (some call it the "UN") has imposed sanctions? They say it is to punish Saddam Hussein, but the "ransom" these imperialist criminals demand could be well over the 200,000 Iraqi masses' lives they took last time. Besides such a vicious reminder of who gives the orders in today's world, these godfathers have another important mission: they say they "need to test" their new bombs.

They think the people are stupid and passive, that we can't see that when they are massacring our class sisters and brothers in the name of "defending democracy" and regional "peace" that their rule really rests on terror. The U.S.-paid for police state of Israel demonstrates this daily to the Palestinians. In the so-called advanced countries, the rulers build more jails than schools, like in the U.S. The German rulers have come up with a new law threatening to expel forever any foreigners arrested at a demonstration involving an "insult" against the state.

In addition to encouraging religious obscurantism, both in the oppressed nations and imperialist countries, they use their democratic laws, modern information technology and weaponry to try to intimidate us into believing their empire is unshakable and impossible to overthrow, into losing heart in our struggles and paralyzing us.

But all this sends a different message to millions, embittered, wise and tempered from the experiences of generations of our class who have heroically challenged the insufferable fate that imperialism offers the majority of the world's people. Reactionary terror and ideas do create obstacles. But the social laws of "oppression breeds resistance" and "it's right to rebel!" coined by Mao Tsetung are reaffirmed every day, with struggle flaring up again and again--sometimes in the same places, sometimes in new places. This underscores in red what the ruling classes try to hide: the immediate and long-range common single interests of a single class, our class, the international proletariat, to carry out Marx and Engels' 150-year-old call to wipe out exploitation and oppression from the face of the earth.

From Chile to Indonesia, the masses are rioting against used-up dictators. The blood of the masses spilt by gangsters like Suharto and Pinochet runs in rivers down the arms of their imperialist masters. The lack of a communist party in many places is denying the masses the leadership and ability to take their struggles all the way to liberation.

In Peru and Nepal, People's Wars are continuing to blaze a trail forward, reflecting Marx's still valid point, that the bourgeoisie will not give up power peacefully. The single most important feature of these revolutionary wars is that they are led by Marxist-Leninist-Maoist parties, the Communist Party of Peru and the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), both participating parties of RIM. Despite many difficulties, the PCP has pursued its 18-year-old war against the reactionary Peruvian ruling class and their Yankee commanders. And in Nepal, the downtrodden, including large numbers of women, have taken up the young people's war--now in its third year--as their own. These People's Wars and those being prepared for or waged by MLM forces around the world represent the only road for the masses that can lead to revolution.

This year, the 150th anniversary of the Communist Manifesto by the founders of communism, let the call Workers of all countries unite! ring out loudly on May 1st in the proletarian internationalist tradition of struggle of our class.

Long Live People's Wars in Peru, Nepal and around the World!

Break the Chains, Unleash the Fury of Women as a Mighty Force for Revolution!

Build and Strengthen Marxist-Leninist-Maoist Parties United in RIM!

Go all out to Raise Funds for RIM!

Long Live the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement!

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