Communist Party of Peru (M-L)

Unmask Senderismo and its counter-revolutionary practice in the light of Marxism-Leninism

The C.C. of the PCP (M-L) addresses itself to the working class, peasantry, youth and working people in general, to express our class greetings and reaffirm our commitment to lead and organize the revolution for the national and social liberation of our people, for the seizure of political power of the State and the building of Socialism as the transition to a classless Communist Society, the historical task that we have been developing since the founding of our glorious Party by Jose Carlos Mariategui on October 7, 1928.

In the international context, the economic, social and political crisis of the capitalist system in its highest and final stage of development, imperialism, is sharpening the fundamental contradictions of our epoch and demands from us a number of important and difficult tasks, among which is to resolve the ideological, political and organizational problems in the light of Marxism- Leninism, on which the revolution in our country depends. Thus it is necessary to unmask, in the process of the class struggle and taking social practice as the criterion of truth, the reactionary character of the actions taken by the gang who usurped the name “Communist Party” of Peru -”Sendero Luminoso (Shining Path)”. They destroyed and set back the organization of the revolution in our country, thus giving new impetus to reaction, to implement neoliberal policies in the most blatant manner, plunging our working people into a political and organizational lethargy.

It is necessary to make known what Shining Path meant and the role it played, being a paramilitary gang of agents and stooges, created and financed by the CIA and drug trafficking. It must be unmasked by its practice as a functional body of reaction and imperialism, as “effective collaborators” with bourgeois justice, which demagogically tries to win the international solidarity of the fraternal parties and revolutionaries outside the country, claiming that they are persecuted by the government, or falsely claiming that they are leading the process of organizing the proletarian revolution. However, they do not say that they are carrying out agent’s work against the popular organization, seeking to imprison the main leaders who are in the struggle by means of informers, “repenting of their political affiliation” against the State and blaming the Senderista affiliation on the popular organizations and leaders in order to tarnish and thwart the just struggles that the workers of the countryside and the city are undertaking.

On “Shining Path”

In our country, the acts of sabotage and terrorism against the people have undoubtedly been initiated by an enemy group in our Party and the working people, “Shining Path,” whose main leaders were expelled from our organization for a number of serious reasons. Among these were: ideological and political disagreement, having become a factional group within the Party, betraying the proletarian cause, trying to involve the Party with drug trafficking, never having undertaken as cadres, the leadership of a truly mass movement, a task assigned by the Party. It organizationally liquidated the Regional Committee of Ayacucho of the Peruvian Communist Youth (Marxist-Leninist), after it had made efforts to fulfill the directive of the CC of the Party, to promote actions in defense of free education on June 21 and 22, 1969, in Huanta and Ayacucho, along with organizing the peasant movement against the imposition of the corporatist Agrarian Reform Law of General Velasco Alvarado and against the recognition of the agrarian debt endorsed by Trotskyism as was the directive of the Party.

This initial action of these elements indicated the degree of isolation, the foquista [small-group] and reactionary nature of the Shining Path clique that we noted, was always isolated from the mass struggle. Therefore, it never led the struggle for concrete demands, neither immediate nor intermediate demands, for the working people. Now opportunistically pretend to pass off as their own the heroic actions of the students and peasants of Huanta and Ayacucho, despite the fact that they had not participated and openly opposed the directives of the Party for leading this movement.

They were also expelled for the constant threats and intimidation of our members, mainly the leadership of the peasant communities and peasant organizations, which denounced their actions of trying to liquidate the communal directives and prohibit their operation, for trying to usurp the most important popular organization in Ayacucho – FREDEPA [Front in Defense of the People of Ayacucho] – in order to divert the popular struggle for Genuine Agrarian Reform, pointing to the need for parcelization, to sabotage the struggles against the fascist military dictatorship; safeguarding personal and group administrative interests within the university, noting the defense of the university and its “democratic principles” rather than the defense of people’s right of access to a national, scientific and democratic education at the service of the people.

Since the beginning of their insane actions, our Party succeeded in exposing, among the people, the anti-popular, agent and pro-imperialist essence of Shining Path, and we are continuing because this gang must be fought in the process of ideological clarification and identification of the class enemies. They are not, nor were they communists or revolutionaries. Communists educate, organize, mobilize and politicize the broad masses because they understand that the revolution is made by the people, the organized masses, with the main force being the working class and its allied force the peasantry, led by its vanguard Party tempered in the heat of the class struggle. The revolutionaries do not waver but go on wisely leading the masses in the process of struggle and do not hide or flee because they must protect the people from the onslaughts of reaction and in fact never direct their weapons against the people.

It is necessary to denounce the fact that they are currently peddling the program of demands of the working class, the peasantry and the people in general, since Senderismo is now trying to give content to their proposals for the “political solution,” “general amnesty” and “national reconciliation,” in order to win freedom for the Sendero commanders and the officers of the police and army who mostly assassinated peasants and destroyed their organic union structure.

The so-called “internal war,” which was really State terrorism and Senderista terrorism, both against the people, are trying to justify targeted killings and mass killings as “costs of war.” These Senderista slogans coincide in practice with those of Fujimori and Montesino who, under the pretext of “reconciliation,” are trying to free the Colina group [death squad under Fujimori – translator’s note], the military and police who crushed the people, mainly in the countryside. That is why the popular organizations reject this action, which is growing mainly in the countryside. The demand that those responsible for the atrocities committed against the people and their leaders should not go unpunished, that those responsible for the massacres of Accomarca, Soras, Barrios Altos and La Cantuta, among others, serve their sentences and pay reparations to the people.

On so-called “Gonzalo Thought”

Gonzalo [chair of Shining Path – translator ‘s note] has been mythologized as the “great synthesis” of Marxism-Leninism-”Maoism” and as the “continuation” of the legacy of Jose Carlos Mariategui in the analysis of Peruvian reality, but this is the most childish and disgusting statement with which one can tarnish the ideology of the proletariat. He never made a contribution in the concrete analysis of the Peruvian reality, he distorted the revolutionary legacy of Mariategui and did not nor does he participate in the correct orientation of the popular movement in the class struggle. With his right opportunism and liquidationism he tries to appropriate the banners of the workers and youth in order to free the executors of insane Senderista acts of terrorism against the people, who made deals with the government of the genocidal dictator Alberto Fujimori, representative of the ruling classes and implementer of the most blatant pro-imperialist policies, who imposed neoliberalism, using the National Police and the Army. These anti-popular forces acted in a combined manner, and ravaged the people caught in the crossfire.

The ideology that they say serve as their compass is “Maoism,” exposed by our Party and other Marxist-Leninist fraternal parties as a form of opportunism and modern revisionism. This has led China to become another social-imperialist power and one in which the proletariat never held power. There was never a dictatorship of the proletariat under the pretext of the “long-term coexistence and mutual control” with the bourgeoisie, and it tried to impose conciliation with the reactionary and fascist government of Velasco using the theory of three worlds.

In practice, so-called “Gonzalo Thought” has meant, if one is a Marxist and fighter for the people, mistakes or distortions in the understanding of the proletarian line, an anarchist-right infantilism. But knowing its true pro-imperialist character, like the efforts of reaction, which eliminated, through selective and mass murder, used terror against the people and destroyed the organization of the mainly peasant masses, in practice clearing the way for imperialist penetration. There is no other definition for this agent gang, a counter-revolutionary paramilitary body and stooges at the service of imperialism. It decapitated the popular movement in our country, in order to overcome the organized resistance of the people and facilitate the implementation of pro-imperialist policies, in compromises the Fujimori government. It now serves to depopulate the peasant communities, the “assassins” and paramilitaries who both murder the community leaders to facilitate the plundering of our natural resources by the transnational corporations.

One cannot hide one concrete fact, the Peruvian people were caught in the crossfire, suffering the biggest attacks, persecutions and losses; at the same time this organization created and financed by imperialism and drug trafficking, which work in the interests of reaction, discredited the Party, usurping our name and that of our organ, “Bandera Roja” [“Red Flag”]; by their terrorist actions against the people, they caused the rejection of our symbols, thus promoting the disarming of the proletariat of their vanguard Party, helping the bourgeoisie in this regard. Lenin said: whoever goes against the proletarian Party disarms the proletariat of its vanguard Party, thus helping the bourgeoisie in this regard.

Today to uphold “Gonzalo Thought” means to uphold the most rapacious policy designed by imperialism to undermine the popular organization and resistance, holding back the organization of the revolution, and distancing the proletariat from the struggle for national and social emancipation.

The counter-revolutionary practice of Shining Path

The nature of this group is essentially petty-bourgeois, made up to a large degree of dogmatic pseudo-intellectual students, who had no class identity; they were neither with the working class, much less with the peasantry and the working people; once the working class was completely excluded, their fire was directed against the peasants and the popular organizations were liquidated.

These actions in essence represent the interests of the bourgeoisie and not of the working class, much less of the peasantry and the working people. Their ranks were mostly composed of university students who had vegetated in the classrooms, who had never been involved in the mass struggle, claiming the “yellow” nature of certain organizations. Thus they avoided the responsibility of giving a class content to the leadership of the mass organizations and the responsibility of ousting the leaderships entrenched with opportunism and reaction.

We should clarify that among our people in those years there was a great sympathy for revolutionary actions, which is why Senderismo could deceive some of the members of the so- called left parties, who swelled the ranks of Sendero with honest people. But they did not take into account the rotten and dirty leadership at the head of this process; they were mainly university students who, due to their insufficient political and ideological training, their get-along attitude, emotionalism and lack of connection with the popular masses, took terrorist acts against the people as acts “in favor of the revolution.” Lenin in his book What Is To Be Done? wrote:

“The Economists and terrorists merely bow to different poles of spontaneity: the Economists bow to the spontaneity of the ‘pure ‘ working-class movement, while the terrorists bow to the spontaneity of the passionate indignation of intellectuals, who lack the ability or opportunity to link up the revolutionary struggle with the working-class movement, to form an integral whole. It is difficult indeed for those who have lost their belief, or who have never believed that this is possible, to find some outlet for their indignation and revolutionary energy other than terror.... Political activity has its logic quite apart from the consciousness of those who, with the best intentions, call either for terror or for lending the economic struggle itself a political character.”

Historical experience shows that revolutionary actions are ones that benefit the popular masses, which is why they can distinguish the real revolutionary actions that are in their interest. Lenin condemned the idea of excitants, which in “Maoist” terms are called executors of “subjective activity,” that is, certain individual or group actions unrelated to the struggle of the masses, which can “wake up” the revolutionary struggle and sharpen the contradictions of society and promote the sharpening of the economic crisis.

Revolutionary action must come from the political work of mobilization, political education and organization of the popular masses, by their vanguard Party and supported by the fundamental force, the working class and its allied class, the peasantry. In his work Marxism and Insurrection, Lenin stated:

“To be successful, insurrection must rely not upon conspiracy and not upon a party, but upon the advanced class. That is the first point. Insurrection must rely upon a revolutionary upsurge of the people. That is the second point. Insurrection must rely upon that turning-point in the history of the growing revolution when the activity of the advanced ranks of the people is at its height, and when the vacillations in the ranks of the enemy and in the ranks of the weak, half-hearted and irresolute friends of the revolution are strongest. That is the third point. And these three conditions for raising the question of insurrection distinguish Marxism from Blanquism.”

We have already said, even in “Bandera Roja,” that the problem with the armed actions of Shining Path is not whether to support it or not support it, but to prepare the Party to preserve and develop its own forces and lead the revolution, because we knew the character with which this gang was born and which directives it followed.

Lenin taught us that actions, as small as they may be, represent a class character and that practice is the criterion by which the validity of a proposal, an action and position regarding the development of the class struggle is tested. From this it follows that the actions of a revolutionary, a Marxist-Leninist, come from the preparation of the subjective conditions of the working class, the peasantry and the people in general.

“Victory cannot be won with the vanguard alone. To throw the vanguard alone into the decisive battle, before the whole class, before the broad masses have taken up a position either of direct support of the vanguard, or at least of benevolent neutrality towards it, and one in which they cannot possibly support the enemy, would be not merely folly but a crime.” (‘Left- Wing’ Communism, An Infantile Disorder, Lenin)

The group to which we are referring mainly carried out acts of sabotage that, from a military point of view, had no objective. These were actions like setting fire to municipal committees of the poor, dynamiting medical posts, bridges (without reason), power plants in small towns; the destruction of crops, the destruction of tractors and the sabotage of road building, the burning of factories and sugar cane plantations, improvements in cattle of the peasant communities, the destruction of productive technical associations, blowing up of electric pylons and other such actions. Terrorist actions against the people included so-called “executions” of children, women and peasant leaders or those considered “snitches,” which for Sendero numbered tens of thousands. Under this pretext they assassinated leaders and residents of peasant communities in Soras, the largest massacre of peasants at the hands of Sendero, Challapuquio, Pomacocha, Lucamamarca, among others; places where armed detachments came to assassinate and dominate the communal organization. These were not traditional forms of terrorism, directed against important state officials.

What did “Senderismo” mean for the peasant movement

A revolution can never succeed by threatening and pressuring the peasants and the working people to join by force or coercion, nor can one impose an action that does not develop from the preparation and education based on the struggle of the masses themselves. Therefore, in order to save the future of the peasant movement and the revolution, our Party needs to encourage the development of forms of peasant self-defense to oppose the two reactionary forces, the State and Shining Path. These forces ultimately agree on the objective of liquidating the peasant movement, depopulating the communities. Coincidentally their so-called “bases of support” are now conveniently situated in areas where the transnational mining companies are taking over communal lands without the least peasant resistance.

On the other hand it is well known that the above-mentioned group has waged struggles not only against our Party, but against the class organizations of the masses. We are referring to its attempts to destroy peasant organizations, assassinating honest leaders tested in the class struggle. Among these are many of our most important cadres of the revolution, such as Pablo Villanueva del Castillo, Lorenzo Galindo Tomaylla, Teobaldo Yupanqui Acha, Lorenzo Chuchon Sulca, Ismael Palomino Huillca, Misael Ore Chavez, Julio Gutierrez Arones, Valentin Anaya Lira, among others. The Senderistas have also destroyed peasant communities with the assassination of the leaders and residents in general, causing a rapid displacement from the countryside to the cities, They thus fulfilled the work for which they were created and financed, to depopulate the communities, so that imperialism can more easily penetrate into the communal lands, with their mining and oil concessions through the Contracts Law, and have access to cheap labor in the big cities.

It is no coincidence that the actions of Shining Path arose and found their most violent expression in areas where there was an organized peasant movement and which had reached class consciousness under the direct influence of the Party, such as in Ayacucho, mainly the area of Cangallo, Vilcashuman; Huancavelica, Ancash and Junin. The actions of Sendero meant the systematic application of targeted and mass assassination of the main leaders of the Peruvian people and the greatest destruction of the organization of the working class and fundamentally the peasantry, which today is reorganizing and struggling, with many difficulties, to regain their rights, in defense of their communal lands and national sovereignty.

The fundamental task of the PCP (M-L)

As Marxist-Leninists we have to study historical experience and learn its lessons in order not to lead our people into unnecessary sacrifices and not to carry out acts of desperation or adventurism or simply to support or go along with those who take the first shot. Not all violence is revolutionary violence, nor is every war of “guerrillas” or “people’s” war a revolutionary war, when it is not led by a vanguard party and supported by the working class. Our task is to develop and strengthen our Party and to organize the revolutionary violence of the popular masses, without deviating from our compass, which is the leadership by the working class and a correct policy of the united front. We must act as a Bolshevik organization, as a genuine organized vanguard of the working class, which boldly puts itself at the front of the struggles of our working people, through revolutionary actions that give it vitality and strengthen its organization, in order to fulfill the fundamental tasks of national and social liberation of our people.

Long live the Peruvian Communist Party (M-L)!

Long live invincible Marxism-Leninism!

Long live the worker-peasant alliance!

Down with the enemies of the people!

For the proletarian revolution and socialism, PCP (ML) guided by Marxism-Leninism!

Lima, November 20, 2013
CC of the PCP (M-L)

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