What is the road to revolution in Nepal?
Posted by redpines on November 19, 2011
The following response to an earlier post about the 7 point agreement on Nepal’s Army integration raises a number of important questions. How did counter-revolutionary lines develop within the UCPN(M)? Was it due to the class backgrounds of certain leaders? Or was it due to incorrect or dogmatic views of the path to New Democracy and socialism?
And, ultimately, what is the road to socialism in a country like Nepal, which is still shaking off its feudal class relations and is vulnerable to the global reach of military and economic imperialism? What kind of transitional stages are necessary? Should revolutionaries unite with the bourgeois parties who want to bring investment from India and elsewhere to ‘develop’ Nepal along capitalist lines? The revolutionary forces in Nepal have argued that this is a road to further immiseration for the vast majority of the country’s people.
We encourage readers to share their views on these questions.
by Kumar Sarkar
Siva said: “Leaving aside what the likes of Bhattarai and Hisila Yami had in mind when joining the Maoist Party, we need to examine how others from different class backgrounds and with healthy attitudes got corrupted– and that may include Dahal.”
Bhattarai and Yami did not ‘sneak’ into the party. Nor did Prachanda. They joined with honest intentions of ‘fighting for socialism’.
This fight for socialism has included in its agenda a program for democratic revolution in a feudal country like Nepal. In theory, it is a prelude to socialism. In practice, it is unable to go beyond democracy.
The problem needs serious investigations, if we are to avoid future disasters, using the tools of scientific socialism and not relying on fate or “a process of reeducation through criticism & self criticism that people fully liberate themselves from reactionary thinking.”
The thinking is reactionary because it is a feudal or semi-feudal environment. And unlike Europe in the 1840′s, from which the ideas of democratic revolution emerged, it is an era of globalised imperialism. And for this era, there is no hitherto prescribed path or practical experience to advance to socialism.
There is no socialist camp today to help the nationalist bourgeoisie, if they now exist anywhere, as some did around the Bandung Conference of 1955, to LEAD the fight against imperialism in the absence of a significantly strong worker-peasant alliance.
Accepting a significant nationalist bourgeoisie or its influential elements, if they exist, in a worker-peasant alliance, is to neutralise them as a force via completing the incomplete or even hitherto uncharted democratic tasks under the leadership of the alliance in New Democracy.
In Nepal today, the bourgeoisie is insigificant and comprador. Self-styled nationalist elements in the Nepal Congress align themselves with the Indian bourgeoisie, of which the big section is comprador, demonstrating once again that development of nationalist bourgeoisie anywhere today is impossible under globalised imperialism.
Bhattarai has been advocating a ‘sub-stage’ in the democratic revolution in feudal Nepal in order to develop capitalism independently, which is a mirage, when global capitalism is going through its worst crisis. If I remember correctly, he explained this strategy in an article in the ‘The Worker’ No 10; unfortunately I cannot give the reference just now.
In his latest contribution on the subject of the strategy for the Nepalese Revolution, in Singapore, Bhattarai has to say the following:
“There is general agreement in the Maoist radical democratic camp that principal impediments to social progress in present-day Nepal are the feudal remnants in different spheres of society, economy and state. Hence the UCPN (Maoist) has identified its principal immediate task as the completion of the bourgeois democratic revolution. Furthermore, the party has already declared its commitment to multi-party competitive politics, periodic elections, freedom of press and assembly, rule of law, human rights, etc, which are considered inalienable features of liberal democracy. The party’s only insistence has been that this political democracy should be grounded on concomitant democracy on economic, social and cultural fronts so that the basic masses of workers, peasants, women, dalits and people of oppressed nationalities and regions, too, can avail the real fruits of democracy. For this, certain specific measures to ensure the real participation of the basic masses of people in the state organs should be enshrined in the very constitution. As A.D. Benoit has rightly said, “The highest measure of democracy is neither the ‘extent of freedom’ nor the ‘extent of equality’, but rather the highest measure of participation”. Similarly, fundamental rights to education, health, employment, food security, shelter, etc., should be guaranteed to every citizen by the constitution.”
So the comprador bourgeoisie of Nepal and worker-peasant alliance -”both sides have more or less unified understanding about the need to sweep away all feudal remnants and complete the democratic revolution”!!!
Infact, Bhattarai has changed the characterisation of the Nepali Congress, conveniently, as follows:
“The liberal democratic camp led by the Nepali Congress, however, has so far not exhibited much ingenuity and flexibility to develop a realistic model of democracy suited to the specific conditions of the country, apart from harping on the traditional model of parliamentary democracy of the Westminister type. The prolonged deadlock over the form of governance, whether the presidential or the prime ministerial system, is its direct manifestation. Since both sides have more or less unified understanding about the need to sweep away all feudal remnants and complete the democratic revolution, it would be prudent to unitedly develop a transitional model of democracy incorporating the positive features of both liberal and socialist/people’s democracy.”
Previously, as far as I remember, the “sub-stage” was supposed to be led by the worker-peasant allaiance. Since then Bhattarai has moved frther to the right – including the Nepal Congress, which is no longer comprador but elevated to the level of the leader of “The liberal democratic camp.”
Bhattarai honestly believes that he is a socialist but he is essentially a bourgeois democrat, accepted in the highest ranking leadership of a revolutionary communist party. There are scores of similar examples in the revolutionary communist movement in the feudal/semi-feudal countries.
Attempts to use yesterday’s solutions to solve today’s problems are creatig havoc. Let us re-examine our concept of democratic revolution in feudal or semi-feudal countries UNDER IMPERIALISM.