We do not think that this meeting should have a conclusion. Rather, we think that it should continue and its success depend on whether it continues and how it continues. We held a lot of meetings and we have drawn important elements to advance from all of them. But, we do not need the same kind of advancement from this meeting. The point is not to collect the speeches and publish them so that they remain among the publications of our movement. Of course, we will publish the booklet of the meeting. The cooperation between the organizers and you will make it available within one month and this time this publication is particularly needed because the circumstances today did not allow everyone to follow all what was said, although we all understood the essence. But, it is important that we have a common view of what this meeting means and can mean. The Maoists in Europe gathered in a particular historical moment.
Generally, in the previous occasions when we met, we gathered in support the people’s wars, that is fundamental task that delineates and defines the Maoists. This time we met to support ourselves, to build the conditions for the development of Maoist parties in the imperialist countries and translate into plans and actions everything we said. Anyone in the respective country, of course. This is the main aspect. But, today we are not in condition to consider that this is all our work. The stage of development of the Maoist parties in the imperialist countries does not allow anyone to do by himself.
The point is not to build a coordination, this is not the main problem. We need something less and something more. We need to help each other to undertake the right road. This meeting, somehow, indicates this right road. We ourselves did not try to hide our criticisms also containing elements of self-criticism in our speech. At the same time, we cannot but welcome with great interest the speech made by comrades from Germany. To go ahead on this road is the decisive point. And then, we cannot but evaluate with great interest the intervention of the comrade from Philippines. Who knows our work, knows how it is difficult to convince the parties leading people’s wars in the oppressed countries about the necessity of the people’s war in the imperialist countries. We know for our experience how this is difficult. Often we found in the presence of parties of the oppressed countries in the imperialist countries almost a hurdle, because they do not recognized the universal value of the people’s war and the need of its application.
Excluding the PCP, in our work we often found parties leading people’s wars which stated that the people’s war is not possible in the imperialist countries. It is clear that the people’s war in the imperialist countries is a milestone and historic key ring. And it is clear that in the imperialist countries devastated by revisionism and all forms of opportunism, the consequent Maoists are alone against all and, therefore, they need the ideological and political support and perhaps something more from the parties leading people’s wars. The masses, however, push the parties in direction of the people’s war. It can be said the both the hills work in the same direction, the revolt of the banlieues one hand and the state of emergency on the other hand.
It is not just a temporary state of emergency. Hollande is desperately trying to change the Constitution so that it will be permanent. The socialists never change their nature. The German Social Democrats were the butchers who killed Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknect. This move of the two hills, albeit not contemporary, objectively pushes us in the direction of constructing communist parties as a fighting force in the heart of the imperialist countries towards the people’s war. And we need the support of the international communist movement and its most advanced expressions. This stage portraits the Maoists when they become more serious, more determined to find the way to actually transform themselves. The German comrades told that communist parties in Italy and France must be reconstituted, we speak about conclusion of the constitution process, new beginning, transformation. Are we speaking about the same thing? Maybe.
In the future, actions will speak. This is the healthy dialectics the MLM communist parties need. Not because Maoists have a “must be” to adhere, but because it is the concrete historical situation of the proletarian and people’s masses. Let us ban pessimism. Imperialists raises their voice and weapons, not because they are winning but because they are losing, because they feel weak, not strong. Repubblica, an Italian newspaper, today publishes a reportage from a neighbour 100 km from Paris, the first where there is a curfew. Police had searched 200 houses there but during the curfew the youth walk around, throw stones on the passing cars.
The same occurs in other suburbs. This is the bread of the Maoists. Of course they need a clear ideological position and a correct analysis. But it is the action is, the way they act, the dynamic factor in the situation. About this, however, some things must be said about the Maoists. The Maoists must lead the masses not only support and describe them. The leadership is the problem for the Maoists. The people’s war is a war of the masses, we cannot dismiss this problem, and we learn to make war by making it. Clearly, we need to understand whether we Maoists are saying the same things on these issues, while we use the same words. And this is the time to see whether we do. We Italian Maoists wish this meeting goes to this direction. The challenge the bourgeoisie and its State of Emergency launched must be met. We do not need to have everything clear before beginning.
Mao teaches us two things: one against opportunism and the other against another form of opportunism.
“Revolutionary war is an antitoxin that not only eliminates the enemy’s poison but also purges us of our own filth. Every just, revolutionary war is endowed with tremendous power and can transform many things or clear the way for their transformation …” (On Protracted War, May 1938)
“Make trouble, fail, make trouble again, fail again . . . until their doom that is the logic of the imperialists and all reactionaries the world over in dealing with the people’s cause and they will never go against this logic. This is a Marxist law. When we say “imperialism is ferocious”, we mean that its nature will never change, that the imperialists will never lay down their butcher knives, that they will never become Buddhas, till their doom. Fight, fail, fight again, fail again, fight again . . . until their victory; that is the logic of the people, and they too will never go against this logic. This is another Marxist law. The Russian people’s revolution followed this law, and so has the Chinese people’s revolution”. (Cast Away Illusions, Prepare for Struggle, August 14, 1949), That is way action is important, because we “need to fail”.
We need to give results to this meeting and not in 10 years. I wish we will not celebrate further anniversaries, before that the whole international communist movement, mainly the Maoists, actually have reached a higher stage. I wish next time we meet, we unite parties that have begun people’s war, parties that have been inside the proletarian revolts and have already achieved successes. We that we should not romanticize the riots. Mao taught us that there are good and bad things within the people, in the people’s struggles. And he pointed out that the mistakes, the failures of the people should be criticized. “To criticize the people’s shortcomings is necessary, . . . but in doing so we must truly take the stand of the people and speak out of wholehearted eagerness to protect and educate them. To treat comrades like enemies is to go over to the stand of the enemy.” (Talks at the Yenan Forum on Literature and Art”, May 1942)
We are proud to have supported the revolt in the banlieues, to have sent our comrades there but, this is not the main. The revolt were more a negative than a positive test. Before the opportunist scoundrels of Voie Proletarienne we have nothing to regret but, before our people we have a lot to regret. Therefore, we can not repeat the same path. The path of the people’s war requires a change in our way. I think the comrades here agree on this. Also I think they agree that the things we told especially serve ourselves, are part of that kind of mutual help the Maoists need to advance along the road we set out together. The point is that the pace cannot be the same of the desktop work. If we looked to our current forces, quantitatively and politically, we would say that there is no game. But is not so.
We must change this ideological and practical status and we must do it now, or at least undertake this kind of path, addressing the situation according to logics of the strategic defensive. We must proof soon we are marching to a common direction. And not to set new events, deadlines or meeting. We have to think the anniversary of the Paris Commune, March 18, as an occasion to give a concrete sign, not a new call for conference. We know that this must be done in each country, but we also know that there are countries that are a crossroads of what must be done. For reasons that are obvious to all, France is one of these countries. If we can find the way through which our work goes ahead, this meeting is a success and can be a ‘new beginning’. Unfortunately it is an overused phrase and on this we are not exactly innocent…