Never more than capitalism?!
This essay has appeared in a number of places, and has provoked sharp controversy (for reasons that should be obvious).
And as we publish it here, we also (for reasons that are obvious) we note that Kasama does not thereby endorse or uphold the conclusions presented here. (Thanks to Countercurrents.org for this.)
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“The simplest and best explanation is simply that the Russian, Chinese, Cuban, and Vietnamese revolutions were bourgeois revolutions, and not proletarian revolutions. I think the Nepalese revolution can change the feudal relations of production and introduce capitalist relations through agrarian reform or revolution. If the Russian, Chinese, Vietnamese etc revolutions created modern capitalist states, then why should the Nepalese Communists, following their examples, go further?”
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By Roshan Kissoon
16 January, 2009
The Nepali revolution has not won, but neither has it lost. There does not seem an imminent danger to the CPN Maoist led government, yet also the government does not seem completely safe. Some believe the Nepali revolution signals the first of a new cycle of revolutions inspired by the Bolshevik revolution in Russia. Others believe the Nepali revolution signals the last of the cycle of revolutions inspired by the Bolsheviks in Russia. We may think of this cycle as starting in Russia, then China, Korea, Vietnam, Cuba, etc, through to Peru and Nepal. I think the latter correct-future revolutions must take a different form, and move away from the Bolshevik or Marxist Leninist model of revolution. Thus far, Marxist Leninist revolutions in the various countries have ended the ‘feudal relations of production’, and replaced it with ‘capitalist relations of production’. Simply put, the Russian, Chinese, Vietnamese, Cuban etc revolutions have created modern capitalist nation states, not communism. I think the leaders of the CPN-Maoist implicitly recognise this, hence Dr.Bhattarai’s statement in the US to ‘leave communism to our grandchildren’. The limitations of the Nepali revolution show the limitations of the Marxist-Leninist theory as well as practice.
Contradictions in Historical Materialism
The science of Marxism has, indeed, discovered the laws of society that can explain how one form of society changes into another form of society. Marxist historians have revolutionised the study of history in every area, from the early origins of humanity to the modern world. Historical materialism can explain and shed light on all periods of human history. Historical materialism does not seem able, however, to explain itself. In those periods of history when Marxism itself played a decisive and dominant role; historical materialism does not seem able to explain nor understand. This seems a contradiction inside the Marxist system, and the inability to resolve this contradiction prevents the Communist movement from advancing ahead. For example, Marxists constantly say that the ‘masses are the real creators of history’, as an explicit challenge to the ‘great man’ hypothesis of bourgeois history. However, in all the Marxist-Leninist revolutions we see again the ‘great man’; the great Lenin, the great Stalin, the Great Mao etc, without whom the revolution would not have succeeded. This seems a glaring contradiction. Again, consider the following questions about the USSR.
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