The Nepali revolution has not won, but neither has it lost. Historical materialism can explain and shed light on all periods of human history. Historical materialism does not seem able, however, to explain itself. Trotsky’s criticisms against Stalin seem correct, but Stalin’s criticisms of Trotsky also seem correct. They both seem correct and both seem incorrect. International revolution was impossible and socialism in one country was impossible. Otto Ruhle, a German Marxist of the early 20th century, in a provocative essay entitled ‘The struggle against Fascism begins with the struggle against Bolshevism’, argued that Hitler and Mussolini only copied the Bolshevik model for their Fascist ideology, because the party and state structure of Fascism bears remarkable similarities, in form, to the Bolshevik party and state. When the Peruvian state captured Chairman Gonzalo and other central committee leaders of the PCP (Communist Party of Peru), their entire struggle collapsed. Even now, the remnants of the Shining Path go on and on about the great leader Chairman Gonzalo, even though Gonzalo now resides in a top security prison and cannot even lead himself to the toilet. From tragedy we move to farce, and the strange behaviour of Chairman Bob Avakian, the leader of the Revolutionary Communist Party of the USA. Even though Chairman Avakian has not led any kind of Peoples War or any major revolutionary struggle, he has declared a ‘new synthesis’ that goes beyond Marx, Lenin and Mao. RCP USA comrades describe Chairman Avakian as ‘the American Lenin’ (which, I presume, would make Lenin the Russian Avakian). An unquestioned assumption behind this kind of argumentation in the Communist movement is the belief that Marx and Lenin were unquestionably right, simply because Marx is Marx and Lenin is Lenin, and the Russian revolution ‘succeeded’. Frankly speaking, the longer and longer the Bolshevik revolution fades into the past, the less and less convincing the tales and legends of the great Lenin will seem. Now, in the 21st century, we can see that Marx’s criticisms of Bakunin were correct, but Bakunin’s criticisms of Marx were also correct. Both are correct and both are incorrect.
Roshan Kissoon is both correct, and incorrect.