This webinar on Trotskyites and social democrats who have been slandering national democrats in the Philippines is based on a prepared text by Jose Ma. Sison. The Tsikahan with Tito Jo (Informal talks with Uncle Jo) webinar was conducted by Anakbayan-Europa on 9 September 2020. The source of the text is from Prof. Sisonʼs Facebook page, with minor typo corrections by PRISM editors. The video version can be watched on FB Live: https://www.facebook.com/AnakbayanEurope/videos/3187411114710426.
ON TROTSKYITES AND OTHER SLANDERERS
Tsikahan with Tito Jo: On Trotskyites and Social Democrats who claim that the National Democrats supported and enabled the fascism of Duterte
Questions by Host Anghelo Godino, Anakbayan-Europa
Answers by Jose Maria Sison, Founding Chairman of Kabataang Makabayan
September 9, 2020
1. Before we progress to our week’s topic, let us try to define some terminologies that should help the viewers understand our discussion. Tito, what is Trotskyism and who was Leon Trotsky? In the Philippines, the National Democratic Movement is long brushing with the Social Democrats; who are these National Democrats and Social Democrats, how did they arise in the Philippine political spectrum?
JMS: Trotskyism is a petty bourgeois anti-commmunist ideology which masquerades as more Left than the communist parties that have built socialist societies and have led anti-imperialist and democratic mass struggles towards the goal of socialism. Leon Trotsky had no grounding on materialist dialectics and did not have a proletarian revolutionary stand and flip-flopped from ultra-Left to Right opportunism and back. He opposed Lenin and the Bolsheviks on all major issues in the revolution, such as the new type of party, class dictatorship of the proletariat, the worker-peasant alliance, the sequence of democratic and socialist revolution, and so on.
A primer for CPP cadres and members titled, ʻSpecial Study on Trotskyismʼ, defines Trotskyism in the following terms:
It is an ideological and political petty-bourgeios trend hostile to Marxism-Leninism and to the international communist movement. It conceals its opportunist essence with radical, left-wing slogans. Trotskyism arose within the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party at the beginning of the 20th century as a form of Menshevism. It was named for its leader, Leon Trotsky (real name Lev Davidovich Bronstein, 1879-1940). It is carried over to the 21st century by adherents known as Trotskyists or Trotskyites.
Lenin described Trotsky in the following words:
Trotsky has never yet held a firm opinion on any important question of Marxism. He always contrives to worm his way into the cracks of any given difference of opinion, and desert one side for the other. He [Lenin] explained further: Trotsky was an ardent Iskraist from 1901 to 1903. At the end of 1903, Trotsky was an ardent Menshevik, i.e. he deserted from the Iskraists to the Economists. …In 1904 and 1905, he deserted the Mensheviks and occupied a vacillating position, now cooperating with Martynov (the Economist), now proclaiming his absurdly Left ‘permanent revolution’ theory.
Trotsky had his final undoing when the Bolsheviks expelled him after he pontificated about the impossibility of building socialism in one country, opposed the socialist revolution and construction in the Soviet Union and engaged in counterrevolutionary activities. He led the so-called Left Opposition, Bukharin led the Right Opposition. They attacked the socialist line from the flanks. The more vociferous Trotsky made anti-Stalinism his trade mark.
Trotsky and his Trotskyite followers have served the fascists in World War II and the US and other imperialist powers before, during and after the Cold War by spreading lies and slanders against the communist parties and revolutionary mass movements which they simplistically attack as Stalinist. For instance, only recently in his diatribe against both the old Communist Party and the new Communist Party in the Philippines, the Trotskyite Joseph Scalice accuses the old Communist Party of Stalinism even after the Lavaite remnants of that party became revisionist and anti-Stalin like the Trotskyites when it sided with the CPSU after the Sino-Soviet split in the 1960s and more so when it collaborated with the Marcos fascist regime from 1972 to 1986.
For several decades already, the Trotskyites from the US, Western Europe, Japan and Australia have formed grouplets of Trotskyites in the Philippines. These have tried to worm their way into the Communist Party of the Philippines and the revolutionary movement and have failed miserably. These grouplets quarrel among themselves but they directly and indirectly assist the reactionary government, especially the current Duterte terrorist regime, in slandering the CPP and red-tagging leaders and members of the patriotic and democratic forces of the national democratic movement.
The national democratic movement is a mass movement of workers, peasants, indigenous peoples, women, youth, professionals and other people in the Philippines who demand and struggle for full national independence, democracy, social justice, economic development through genuine land reform and national industrialization, cultural progress and international solidarity with all peoples against imperialism and all reaction. The national democratic movement is inspired by the Philippine Revolution of 1896 against Spanish colonialism and by all revolutionary struggles of the Filipino people against US imperialism and the local exploiting classes.
After the defeat of the armed revolutionary movement in the early 1950s, the Student Cultural Asociation of the University of the Philippines (SCAUP) became the starting point of a renewed national democratic movement. It further developed into the comprehensive youth organization, Kabataang Makabayan, which embraced the student and the young workers, peasants and professionals. Together with trade unions and peasant associations, the KM became the strongest nationwide base for the reestablishment of the Communist Party of the Philippines in 1968.
The so-called social democrats (soc-dems) in the Philippines are not really the same as the classical social democrats in Europe who have garbed their petty bourgeois liberalism and pacifism with the language of Marxism or the bourgeois laborism of the labor aristocracy. They used to be called clerico-fascists up to the 1960s because of their religious sectarianism and glorification of feudal institutions as models of good society. Subsequently, they called themselves social democrats like the US puppet Nguyen van Thieu in Vietnam, using a hodge podge of religiosity, liberalism, social reformism and anti-communism which they use to attack the anti-imperialist and democratic forces in the national democratic movement.
The antecedent of the soc-dems was the Christian Social Movement, whose leader Raul Manglapus gained national prominence as propagandist for the CIA-supported presidential candidate Ramon Magsaysay and who occupied high positions in the reactionary government. The most notorious of the soc-dems in recent times is Norberto Gonzales of the Nagkakaisang Partido Demokratiko Sosyalista ng Pilipinas (NPDSP) who became national security adviser and then defense secretary of the Arroyo regime and was responsible for fouling up the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations, teaming up with General Esperon in the series of terror campaigns called Bantay Laya I, II and III and requesting the US government to designate the CPP, NPA and myself as terrorists.
2. In the 2016 election, Duterte claims that if he wins, he will be the first socialist president of the Philippines. Many said that because of this statement and the supposed “support and aid” he provided for the ND movement, particularly in Mindanao, that the communists endorsed and supported his presidential bid. Is this true? And by the definition of socialist, is Duterte a socialist?
JMS: The Trotskyites are grossly lying when they claim that the CPP supported the presidential candidacy of Duterte. The CPP is banned from the electoral exercises of the reactionary government and as a matter of principle the CPP is waging a people’s democratic revolution through people’s war and is building the revolutionary government of workers and peasants in the guerrilla fronts.
The BAYAN MUNA and others in Makabayan Bloc, well-known electoral parties of the national democratic movement, supported the presidential candidacy of Grace Poe and not Duterte. In this regard, the Trotskyites are also grossly lying. And desperately grasping for a semblance of evidence of ND support for Duterte before and after the 2016 presidential elections, they cite the diplomatic and tactful words and gestures to Duterte encouraging him to engage in peace negotiations and cooperate in realizing the People’s Agenda.
Before, during and after the 2016 presidential elections, nobody in his right mind believed Duterte when he said that he was Left and socialist. The most discerning knew that he was the candidate of big comprador-landlord dynasties and former presidential plunderers with links to the US and Chinese imperialism, especially the Marcos, Arroyo and Estrada families. In his entire political life, Duterte has never explained what he meant by calling himself a socialist. Definitely, he is not socialist in any sense by word or deed.
3. Duterte has killed over 30,000 Filipino people under the War on Drugs. Our country is now on the second spot as Asia’s deadliest country to be activists. A certain contributor to the World Socialist Website wrote that the CPP called on the revolutionary forces to cooperate with Duterte’s War on Drugs and published it in Ang Bayan, calling the Party and the entire ND movement “enabler.” What can you say about this?
JMS: In principle, before and after Duterte became president, the CPP has always been for the solution of the drug problem as a health problem and for cracking down on the drug lords, especially at the top level of illegal manufacturers, smugglers and governors and generals who were protectors. The CPP has always wished that the drug problem be solved the way Comrade Mao did in the early years of the People’s Republic of China.
As soon as it was clear that the Duterte regime was listing and killing the urban poor as drug users and drug peddlers, Comrade Oris as spokesman of the CPP and NPA condemned Duterte’s bogus war on drugs in July 2016, the very first month of Duterteʼs presidency. Since then, the CPP has been the most outstanding in condemning Duterte for using the bogus drug war to intimidate the people and install himself as the supreme drug lord. The Trotskyites make themselves complicit with Duterte in the drug trade and in his commission of grave crimes by trying to discredit the CPP and trying to disable it from fighting Duterte on the issue of illegal drugs and extrajudicial killings.
4. In the beginning of the Duterte administration, he seemed to be really bringing the change that he promised. Duterte appointed Leftist personalities in his cabinet such as Ka Paeng Mariano, Liza Maza, Joel Maglunsod, and Judy Taguiwalo. Because of this, speculations arose such as the Left, by that the Party – is already turning revisionist. Some say that the ND movement is forming a coalition government with the Duterte administration. Do you subscribe to this? Why did the Left allow the appointment of these personalities? How is it beneficial to the people they are serving?
JMS: When Duterte said publicly that he wanted to appoint communists to his cabinet and government agencies, I answered him publicly that he could not appoint persons to the cabinet or other government positions as representatives of the CPP or NDFP because the peace negotiations and the people’s war were still going on. And I told him publicly, he could appoint people to positions on the basis of individual merits of being patriotic, competent, honest and diligent.
The Trotskyites and other anti-communists are red-tagging the persons that you have mentioned by insisting that they were appointed as communists to government position by Duterte. They pretend to be more revolutionary than the revolutionaries by dishing out the lie that the CPP engaged in coalition with the Duterte regime by letting him appoint patriotic and progressive people to his cabinet.
Scalice is a big liar for claiming or insinuating that the CPP coalesced with and supported the Duterte regime. The people’s war went on and is still going on. Only a liar can try to make it appear that the armed conflict or civil war is a form of coalition or mutual support. The Trotskyites and other anti-communists, in their comfortable bureaucratic and academic chairs, utterly fail to make themselves appear revolutionary by casting scandalous lies and false accusations against the CPP exactly at a time that the Duterte regime is intensifying its murderous rampage on the people and their revolutionary movement against the regime.
5. Will the Left be open to a coalition government with Duterte or any administration for this matter? How do you see the alliance with the Liberals at this point? Conversely, if the Left will ally with the Liberals or form a coalition government, what would it mean? Will it not veer from its principles?
JMS: Since May 2017, when Duterte aborted the fifth round of the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations, he has done everything to prevent serious peace negotiations. On November 23, 2017, he formally terminated the peace negotiations and on December 5, 2017 he designated the CPP and NPA as ‘terrorist’ organizations. Subsequently, he formed the National Task Force to eliminate the CPP and the armed revolution and he has licensed himself to engage in state terrorism in the name of anti-terrorism. There is no longer any basis for peace negotiations and there is absolutely no prospect of coalition with the Duterte regime.
If you mean by Liberal the Liberal Party, it is premature to talk about forming a coalition government with them even as there is a basis for discussing and forming a formal or informal alliance against the Duterte regime. At the same time, there are soc-dems, militarists and other rabid anti-communists around Robredo who are bent on opposing such alliance. The US is also cultivating her as successor to Duterte and coaxing him to resign or simply finish his term. The possibility of a coalition government with the Liberals can arise only if they take power from Duterte under the pressure of mass actions and then engage the NDFP in peace negotiations. The success of such peace negotiations can be the basis for a coalition government. Otherwise, there is no basis.
6. Joseph Scalice who claims to be a Philippine historian wrote that the CPP is a “reactionary nationalist ideology of Stalin and its Maoist variant”, and even goes as far as saying that socialism is off the agenda in countries like the Philippines which he said is belated-capitalist. What does he mean by belated-capitalism and is socialism really off the agenda?
JMS: Joseph Scalice is merely parroting the old line of Trotskyism that communist parties can only be nationalist if they seize power in one country after another and carry out socialist revolution and construction as Stalin and Mao did. The Trotskyites follow the crazy idea of Trotsky that it is impossible to build socialism in one country. But Stalin and Mao built socialism. What kind of a historian is Scalice who denies the great historic achievements of Stalin and Mao.
With regard to the oppressed peoples and nations still fighting for national liberation and democracy against imperialism and the local exploiting classes in semicolonial and semifeudal countries, the Trostkyites deny the necessity of the new-type bourgeois democratic and socialist stages of the revolution and have the perverse notion that being anti-imperialist is necessarily being bourgeois nationalist and winning over the national bourgeosie, even as an unstable and unreliable ally, to the anti-imperialist alliance is necessarily merging with it and even being subservient to this social stratum. The Trotskyites are totally dishonest in misrepresenting communist revolutionaries and they obscure and cover up imperialism as the enemy of the proletariat and the people.
Actually, the Trotskyites and the pseudo-social democrats in the Philippines say that the Philippines is already ‘capitalist’ and no longer semifeudal, that socialism should be the immediate issue in the revolutionary agenda and that the CPP is being nationalist for first engaging in the people’s democratic revolution. But the Trotskyites are self-contradictory because they do not like socialism in one country. And the reformist social-democrats wish to conserve the exploitative system while improving the lot of the workers.
These imbeciles do not understand that semifeudalism is a form of capitalism dominated by the comprador big bourgeoisie in combination with the landlord class in subordination to foreign monopoly capitalism. They also do not understand that the people’s democratic revolution with a socialist perspective has first to defeat the forces of foreign and feudal domination before the proletariat and the people can obtain the basis and the power to begin the socialist revolution and construction.
7. One of the most hackneyed arguments against the ND movement by the Trots and the Liberals is on Stalinism. According to them, Stalin’s notoriety should not be celebrated or looked up to and yet the ND movement pays respect to this man. How should we respond to such claims? Why do the Left draw lessons from Stalin’s experiences? As Filipino activists, what can we actually learn from him?
JMS: Stalin as the leader of the Bolshevik party engaged in socialist revolution and construction in the Soviet Union twice over (first before World War II, then again after the war when it rebuilt itself) and inflicted the most fatal blow on fascism during World War II. Roosevelt and Churchill had high praises for Stalin until the US and Britain launched the Cold War out of fear that the rise of several socialist countries and national liberation movements was endangering the world capitalist system. During World II, the Trotskyites collaborated with the fascists in Germany, Spain, the US, the Soviet Union, Indochina, Latin America and elsewhere.
The Trotskyites and the Liberals are against Stalin for the most despicable reasons. The CPP appreciate highly Stalin’s great achievements in socialist revolution and construction and in defeating Nazi Germany but is critical of him for prematurely declaring the end of classes and class struggle in socialist society in 1935. As a consequence, Stalin failed in correctly handling contradictions among the people and failed to preempt the rise of modern revisionism. I have written extensively on these issues. You and our listeners can read my piece titled Stand for Socialism against Modern Revisionism.
8. Tito, these Trots seem to be delving more on their attacks against the Philippine Left instead of exposing and opposing the tyrant that is Duterte. Why do they do this? Why do they seem to devote their time trying to bring down the Left movement instead of uniting against the common enemy?
JMS: The Trotskyites expose themselves as counterrevolutionaries by concentrating their attacks on the CPP and the revolutionary movement and red-tagging the legal forces of the national democratic movement, while these are now in the forefront of the struggle to oust Duterte from power. The Trotskyites are practically special agents of the Duterte terrorist regime.
In a perverse and absurd way they hold the most resolute and consistent anti-Duterte forces responsible for Duterte’s crimes. This is a case of blaming the victims in order to minimize the culpability of the culprit and save him. The Trotskyites practically support the all-out war of Duterte against the people and revolutionary movement. Even if sometimes they shed crocodile tears over the martyrs murdered by Duterte, the Trotskyites make themselves complicit with him in his bloody crimes and they insinuate that the martyrs deserve their death for having supported him.
They are like their cultist idol Trotsky who fled the Soviet Union to attack Bolsheviks and the socialist cause. He and his followers have specialized in the role of posing as more revolutionary than the revolutionaries and then attacking the revolutionaries to favor the people’s enemy. Trotskyites are traitors to the proletariat and the people. They are barefaced swindlers whose highest ambition is to sell information and analyses to anti-communist foundations, research groups and intelligence agencies.
9. Scalice went on with his lecture on August 26, during this lecture he showed what he called proof of the Left’s support to Duterte. There were photos, quotes from you, and other Leftist personalities, even. To clarify this, does the Left really think that Duterte could bring hope? If you did so in the past, what changed? Scalice is not the only one using the past interviews, pictures and whatnot to support their allegation, a lot of anti-communists and Trots are using it as well. Do you have anything to say to them? To what extent should the Left support or commend the positive decisions of the Duterte or for this matter, any reactionary personalities?
JMS: The NDFP has long been engaged in peace negotiations since 1992 when the The Hague Joint Declaration was mutually approved by the NDFP and GRP principals in order to set the framework of purpose, agenda and methods for the peace negotiations. The purpose is to address the roots of the armed conflict, arrive at comprehensive agreements on social, economic and political reforms and thereby lay the basis for a just and lasting peace. The NDFP has stood by its revolutionary principles and policies and has never capitulated to the GRP, from the time of Ramos to Duterte.
Together with the CPP, NDFP and so many peace advocates from religious and nonreligious organizations and mass organizations, I made statements to encourage Duterte to engage in peace negotiations because he himself asked for the peace negotiations, made promises about amnestying and releasing all political prisoners; and declared that he was ready for social, economic and political reforms.
The GRP-NDFP peace negotiations have been characterized by diplomatic dialogue and objections of the NDFP to repeated attempts of the GRP to maneuver the NDFP into a position of capitulation. The NDFP has always rebuffed such attempts and thus the peace negotiations have been interrupted by the enemy so many times. It is utterly stupid for Scalice to pick out diplomatic statements and gestures of the NDFP and mine and disregard the firm adherence of the CPP and NDFP to revolutionary principles and the continuance of the people’s war. Duterte has never stopped his all-out war against the revolutionary movement and the latter has never stopped its people’s war. Only a Troskyite and fake historian can deny such a glaring fact.
If for instance, I spurned Duterte’s plea for peace negotiationsfrom the beginning, the same anti-communist Trostkyites and Liberals would attack me as dogmatist, unreasonable and bellicose. The CPP and NDFP actually put Duterte under the test to prove whether or not he was for a just peace. And he was exposed as refusing a just peace, while the NDFP was able to publicize its program of social, economic and political reforms for a just peace. You have to be inside the peace process and on the side of the NDFP to know how Duterte came to be distrusted as early as in October 2016 when he refused to amnesty and release all political prisoners.
10. The Trots say that there is no longer need for protracted people’s war—encircling the cities from the countryside is a romanticism of an obsolete belief. They even say that now more than ever, the world is ready for a spontaneous, synchronous revolution. Why was it wrong a few decades ago and why is it still wrong now? Is it still wrong even in the present context of the Philippine society where Duterte is extremely unpopular?
JMS: The Trotskyites expose themselves as counterrevolutionary agents of US imperialism and the Filipino reactionaries by spouting the propaganda that there is no longer need for a protracted people’s war—that encircling the cities from the countryside is a romanticism of an obsolete belief.
And they repeat the old rotten line of Trotsky that revolution in any country is futile unless it is synchronized with a spontaneous and seamless world revolution. This is the stupid idea of having a permanent revolution but not having a revolution anywhere if there are no simultaneous revolutions on a world scale. At best, it is the dogmatism of wanting to reach a mountain summit without any arduous climb, waiting instead for a cable-car to magically appear. It is an outright rejection of any serious effort at making revolution.
The conditions of the Philippines are semicolonial and semifeudal and thus there is a need for people’s democratic revolution with a socialist perspective through protracted people’s war under the leadership of the CPP and under the guidance of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism. The CPP wields the revolutionary armed struggle as the main weapon and integrates this with agrarian revolution and mass base-building. It also wields the national united front by relying mainly on the basic alliance of workers and peasants, winning over the middle social strata and taking advantage of the splits among the reactionaries in order to isolate and destroy the enemy one after the other.
Without the people’s army in the Philippines, the Filipino people have nothing. The people’s war is precisely what has compelled the GRP to negotiate with the NDFP. By engaging in peace negotiations, the NDFP has succeeded in propagating the people’s demands for national and social liberation even as the GRP and Trotskyite special agents of the enemy have tried to misrepresentt the principles and position of the NDFP.
What is the strength of the CPP and NPA, which are belittled and scorned by the Trotskyite counterrevolutionaries who wish to liquidate the armed revolution ? Let me quote a recent statement of the NPA about its current strength:
The NPA continues to operate in more than 110 guerrilla fronts in 73 of 81 provinces across the country. It has several thousand guerrilla fighters. They are armed with high-powered weapons and small firearms seized from the enemy, security forces and other sources. The NPA employs grenades and command-detonated explosives. They also use indigenous methods of warfare such as booby traps and punji sticks.
Units of the NPA operate under 14 regional operations command, which in turn are under the National Operational Command (NOC). The NPA is under the absolute leadership of the Communist Party of the Philippines through its Central Committee and Political Bureau and its Executive Committee and the Military Commission of the Central Committee.
The NPA was able to mount at least 710 military actions of various sizes from March 29, 2019 to March 29, 2020. These include harassment, disarming, demolition, sapper and partisan operations, punitive actions, raids against enemy detachments and ambuscades. Most of these actions are not reported in the bourgeois media. At least 651 enemy troops were killed, while more than 465 were wounded in action, the equivalent of around 30 platoons or two battalions of enemy troops. All regions across the country were able to contribute to these tactical offensives. Among the most significant victorious tactical offensives were those in Southern Tagalog in Luzon, in Eastern Visayas and Negros in the Visayas and in North Central and Northeast Mindanao.
11. Some critics mentioned that the CPP-NPA is losing its foothold on the toiling masses because of sheer militarism, irrelevance of its advocacies, and duration of the war it’s waging. Is there a truth in it? Are the masses already impatient?
JMS: As I have already explained, the CPP and NPA are not engaged in sheer militarism. They are guided by the theory of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism and they are carrying out a program of people’s democratic revolution with a socialist perspective.They have grown in strength and advanced in the revolutionary struggle because they have won the support of the Filipino people in their millions. The NPA is not only a fighting force for developing the people’s political power but it is also an organization for mass work and for helping the people and the people’s government in carrying out social, economic, political and cultural programs.
The CPP has excellently built itself ideologically, politically and organizationally. It is deeply rooted among the masses and exists nationwide. It leads various types of mass organizations of workers, peasants, indigenous peoples, women, youth, professionals and people belonging to various sectors. Millions of people belong to these mass organizations. At the same time, more millions of people are under the governance of the local organs of political power that comprise the People’s Democratic Government. The various mass organizations and various types of alliances support this government.
The revolutionary mass movement led by the CPP is born out of the lessons from the revolutionary history of the Filipino people and from the concrete analysis of concrete conditions. The CPP and NPA have so far been the biggest and strongest revolutionary forces of their kind in the entire history of the Filipino people. They have created the people’s democratic government which continues to win victories against the reactionary government of big compradors, landlords and bureaucrat capitalists servile to foreign monopoly capitalism.
12. What makes Trotsky’s writings so palatable, especially for philosophers and activists in Europe, especially in countries where he was exiled? He is still very popular now in France, for example.
JMS: To dispel any impression that Trotskyites are attractive in Europe or anywhere else, let me refer to Ho Chi Minh’s exposure of Trostkyites as counterrevolutionary agents:
For example, in Spain, their names are Workers’ Party of Marxist Unification (POUM). Did you know that it is they who are the nests of spies in Madrid, Barcelona and elsewhere in the service of Franco? It is they who organized the famous “fifth column,” agency of the army intelligence of the fascist Italians and Germans. In Japan, they are called Marx-Engels-Lenin League (MEL). The Japanese Trotskyists attract young people to their league, then reported them to the police. They seek to penetrate the Japanese Communist Party in order to destroy it from within. In my opinion, the French Trotskyists, now organized around the Proletarian Revolution Group set a goal to sabotage the Popular Front. On this subject, I think you are better informed than I am. In Indochina, Trotskyists are grouped into formations like La Lutte, War against the Japanese, Culture and Red Flag.
In my own time, as a young trade union activist in the Philippines, in the early 1960s, I became aware of the notorious Trotskyite Jay Lovestone who was being denounced by the Filipino trade union leaders as a long time agent of the Central Intelligence Agency. He exemplified the Trotskyite who wormed his way to the communist leadership and trade unions in the US in order to subsequently carry out anti-communist witchhunts against alleged communist party mambers and trade unionists and make intelligence reports to the CIA. Since then, I have become alert to entryism or penetration by Trotskyites into revolutionary organizations. I have come across Trotskyites in the US, Australia, Japan, France, The Netherlands and other countries. They use a wide variety of party names and take various guises as activists and academics. And I have always managed to distance myself from them.
The writings and historical record of Trotsky appeal only to a few with a petty bourgeois mentality. The Trotskyites are very often funded and used by the imperialists to attack communist parties because of their anti-communist, anti-Stalin and anti-Mao propaganda. The Trotskyite organizations are small and easily get split when someone among them starts accusing the leaders of being Stalinist for trying to centralize the decision-making and to require discipline. They are hostile to the basic principles of Marxism-Leninism, such as the class dictatorship of the party, the vanguard role of the communist party, the basic alliance of the workers and peasants, and democratic centralism.
When a Trotskyite group grows relatively big, it is because it adopts a misleading name and self-description and attracts the petty bourgeois youth. But it is soon riven by factionalism and petty bourgeois wrangling. Most of those who join Trotskyite groups drop out after a short while because of internal rows, lack of revolutionary mass activity and disgust at being stridently anti-communist. At any rate, I have not seen any Trotskyite party winning revolution since Trotsky got himself thrown out of the Bolshevik party as a counterrevolutionary nearly a century ago.
Trotskyites persist as small groups railing against the truly revolutionary parties of the proletariat. They have long been exposed as using ultra-Left slogans as well as ultra-liberal and anti-Stalin slogans to mask their counterrevolutionary purposes. Because of their anti-Stalin and anticommunist views, Trotskyite groups are favorite recruiting pools of the imperialists and reactionaries for propagandists and spies against communist parties and revolutionary movements.
In the past, Trotksyite parties were relatively strong in Mexico and Sri Lanka. But they have disintegrated here because of their anti-communist ideology and political line, anarchism and adventurism, their preocccupation with slandering and attacking communist parties. At certain times, the Trotskyites appeared to be sucesssful when they collaborated with social democratic institutions and groups as in France or with anarchist groups in mass actions. But eventually they dwindled because of their Trotskyite cultism and sectarianism.
13. Lastly, Tito, for the sake of our viewers from Europe. One of the most common questions of Western Leftists is if there are Trotskyites in the Philippines. Are there and how do you spot one? Why is it necessary to know about Trotskyism ?
JMS: There are small Trotskyite groups in the Philippines. They have been formed by various foreign Trotskyite groups based in Western Europe, Japan, Australia and the US. They have tried to penetrate the CPP but have also failed ultimately because they are exposed for suddenly opposing Marxism-Leninism-Maoism and the general line of people’s democratic revolution with a socialist perspective after pretending to adhere to them.
All of the Trotskyite groups are mere babblers and are most active with publications, especially now online. They have some academics and a few unions. But they have failed to hoodwink the people and the intelligentsia. Like Trotsky their idol, they do not do serious mass work and they do not struggle against the enemy but against the revolutionaries.
They have isolated themselves with their anti-Stalinist obsession, their opposition to the people’s democratic revolution as a supposedly unnecessary stage in the Philippine revolution and their preoccupation with anti-communist attacks on genuine communist parties and revolutionary movements wherever they are in the world. They can only get themselves further isolated by joining Duterte in attacking the communist revolutionaries and the patriotic and democratic forces that are now rising up. ###