From the country where the “Arab Spring” took place, where the masses shook and toppled down pro-imperialist regimes, our militant and internationalist support reaches the People’s War in India and the party leading it. Although Tunisia is a small country of 10 million people in North Africa, it gained, especially in recent years, a considerable importance for the revolutionary development in the region. After the first the miners’ strike of Gafsa and Métlaoui in the south of the country in 2008, on December 2010, the uprising against the decades-long regime of Ben Ali broke out in Sidi Bouzid, again in the south of the country.
Since the days of Bourguiba, the first president of “independent” Tunisia tied to the French imperialist bourgeoisie, this area has been doomed to the economic and social underdevelopment by the domestic comprador bourgeoisie mainly base in Tunis and the cities on the coast. Against this condition, the strikes by miners and other people’s masses (mainly of the youth) in the South of the country, increasingly extended to workers, youth, women across the country, including the petty and middle bourgeoisie and the intellectuals. Massive strikes combined with roadblocks and attacks on the hated army barracks and police stations across the country led to the fall of the regime. All this recent history is well-known.
What is perhaps less well known, even within our movement, is how varied the presence of the Maoists in Tunisia is. There are different groups and parties operating both in the biggest cities and the countryside. These comrades together carry out revolutionary work among the different sectors of society and are at the forefront in the support to the PW in India and the party that leads it. As he Maoist Communist Movement in Tunisia wrote in the message to the International Conference in Hamburg: “We are proud of the progress made by the CPI (Maoist), especially since 2004, year of its formation, and we congratulate the militants and fighters who, thanks to their determination and bravery, were able to free up one third of the “Indian” territory and founded the people’s power, the new democratic power.”
And, as the Maoist Communist Organization in Tunisia wrote for the same occasion: “As Maoist Communist Organization in Tunisia we would have taken part in this international conference to express our support for the People’s War in India led by our comrades of the Indian Communist Party (Maoist).” This solidarity consists not only of the words sent to Conference in Hamburg by these organizations belonging of the wider Maoist Tunisian movement but also of actions the comrades carry out in the daily struggles they lead.
For example, the students front, particularly in the university, where the organized form of the students, the student union UGET, is heavily influenced by the social-democrat parties of the Popular Front, the support to the PW in India implies a sharp theoretical and ideological struggle against those who advocate the peaceful means and electoral road to socialism. Leafleting, solidarity messages from students Tunisian, meetings in the have been organized in recent years with this purpose. Some art students put their skills at the service of the latest international campaigns, realizing hand-drawn posters.
Another example is the support to political prisoners, whose struggle is all the more broad and important in Tunisia, a country where the youth who participated in the revolt against old regime and continue fearing even the current one, of so-called “transition” (indeed restoration) and other opponents in general are arrested, beaten and tortured. On the last day of June 19, dedicated to Saibaba, chairman for the RDF arrested by the Indian regime, the comrades of the MCM-T issued a message and a poster to create a “bridge” of struggle against the suppression ongoing both in Tunisia and India.
As in the words of the message sent to the Hamburg Conference: “We understand the ferocity of imperialism and its servants against the revolutionary movement and the people’s war in particular, we understand why they have done their utmost to derail the uprisings in the Arab countries in their favour. Without revolutionary leadership, these spontaneous uprisings could not go far, even if the masses continue to fight with teeth and nails.” Lenin said that the best example of proletarian internationalism is to make revolution in own country, In Tunisia as in India, the revolutionary strategy is the Protracted People’s War, with the creation of liberated zones in the countryside to encircle the cities. Tunisia has vast areas of the countryside and over the past few decades there have been experiences of armed struggle, particularly in the North-west and South of the country, where guerrilla units such as Fellagha led encirclement campaigns against the colonial forces in the years of the national liberation struggle, 1952-1954.
Unfortunately, from these favorable objective conditions in Tunisia currently take advantage only the jihadist groups which can easily move and realize actions through he porous borders with Algeria and Libya. We must also learn from the last revolt, that showed the rebel character and a prominent role of young workers from outskirts and suburbs. Right two days ago, other youth we can say “democrats” organized “the first demonstration against the ISIL in an Arab and Muslim country.” We do not know exactly the nature of this protest. In any case, to develop a relentless struggle against Islamic fascism represented by forces such as ISIS is a necessity since they are an obstacle for the revolutionary forces.
We have to take into account all these elements in the application of the general strategy of the PW. The Islamist hegemony is a problem that affects the entire Arab world, where currently many armed groups turn to jihad and no revolutionary organization develops armed struggle, excepted some forces in Iraq. It is obvious that in order to assert the path of PPW in the countries of the North Africa and Middle East, the first goal to achieve, it the theoretical and political defeat of Islamist movements and groups, which often rely mass support (This problem is most evident in Palestine with Hamas). Secondly, there is the struggle against neo-revisionist forces.
This work serves the growth and strengthening of Maoist parties in the countries of the region by joining the Maoists in the ideological struggle against existing deviations, as the pan-Arabism, that looks at non-proletarian theories and forces disguised as “anti-imperialist”, as Baathism, Nasserism and even Islamism, arguing a “united fronts”with reactionary forces such as Hezbollah or Hamas, holding them as “nationalist”. It is a serious issue. Particularly the contradiction within the people arising from the influence that the Islamic religion on the masses of Middle East North Africa region. For this reason, the interesting debate started in the International Meeting “From the uprisings to the revolution in the Arab countries” held in Paris on 2011 has to go on and be deepened.
The events of the last few months concerning the ISIL show once again that the reactionary religious movements are mirrors of imperialism. They both oppress the masses. Because of the lacking of a Maoist leadership in the region, the fight against ISIS is waged by a front including imperialists and Zionists, the same who sponsored the ISIL in anti-Syrian function, the pro-imperialist Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga, the Syrian Kurds of YPG, who claim to be anti-imperialist but welcomed the bombing of imperialism on Syria.
The victory of this front will not solve the problems of the masses. The Maoist parties and organizations in Turkey, Kurdistan and Iraq can and must be a solution for this situation. In Palestine, the hegemony of Hamas on the one hand and, on the other hand, the revisionists do not allow the Palestinian people to undertake the path of the PW. The People’s War in India and the party that leads it, whose tenth anniversary we celebrate today, as well as other people’s wars, are an ideological beacon for the development of Maoism in the MENA region and to assert the path of the PW.
As put by the comrades of the Maoist Communist Movement in Tunisia in the Conference in Hamburg: “We state that the people’s war in India is our war, because imperialism and its lackeys launched a war on the workers, exploited and oppressed peoples all-around the world, and in front of this violence of the reactionary state, only the People’s War led by the Maoist Communist Party can lead to the victory, the liberation and the construction of people’s power, the new democracy, opening the road to socialism.” We wish that the anniversary of the formation of CPI (Maoist) be a good omen for the birth of new Maoist parties which launch people’s wars in North Africa and the Middle East, historical necessary opportunity at the service of the world proletarian revolution.
Maoist Communist Movement in Tunisia