Grasping United Front Principles

Swimming in Green by Tala Roque

She has a command of oils that her Lola before her never learned.

BUILDING THE REGIONAL UNITED FRONT COMMISSION FOR MINDANAO

(as revised and adopted by the Mindanao Regional Executive Committee)

(September 1977)

I. INTRODUCTION

There is an urgent necessity for building the Party Commission on united front work for the Mindanao region.

Since the founding of the Party in Mindanao in June 1971, the Party and the New People's Army have grown tremendously.  The revolutionary situation has intensified as never before.  As we begin to sum up our work and look close into the scope of our revolutionary tasks, we realize that: a. the political line must be adjusted to the concrete needs of the concrete situation; b. the obsolete forms of organization we had in the past must give way to appropriate ones; and c. the revolutionary experiences that we have accumulated must be raised to a higher level of theory.

We must be aware of the awesome responsibility we carry in waging the revolutionary struggle in the region.  The events of November-December 1976 point out the direction we must take in order to fulfill our revolutionary tasks at the present stage of the struggle.  We have learned valuable lessons from our collective experience and are well on the way to rectifying the mistakes of the past.  Being the vanguard of the proletariat, we are good not only at criticizing ourselves, accepting mistakes and smashing old ideas and incorrect methods; we are also very capable of becoming more creative and daring in building new things in a planned and organized way.

It is in this spirit and with this resolute purpose that we set down the basic principles and concrete organizational steps for the guidance and clarification of all comrades concerned.

 

II. SUMMING UP OF URBAN WORK (1971-76)

In order to master policy, we must first know conditions.  We must know thoroughly the history of the Party in the entire region. This necessitates well-rounded collective discussions of “Party Situation and Policies in the Mindanao Region” (PSP).

We must also know thoroughly the history of urban work in Mindanao.  While the PSP document discusses this, the summing-up below elaborates the salient points.  We must also conduct well-rounded collective discussions of this summing-up, bringing up concrete instances from our practice wherever possible.

What we are calling for is a living study of the history of the Party and its urban work in the entire region.  We have been and are being provided with documents to help us in this matter.  We must make sure that these documents are not kept in the shelves, unread; we must at all opportunities take these up in our meetings and whenever needed, reproduce them.  Only in this manner can we make sure that we are building new things in a planned and organized way.

 

A. Urban Work Before Martial Law (June 1971-September 1972)

Activism had spread to eleven cities when the Party was introduced to Mindanao in June 1971. A Party group of four members was formed in one mass organization in X.  Another Party group was established in Y at about the same time. The Party group in X became the basis for Party expansion as well as Party leadership.  When a Central Committee member came in December 1971 to assume leadership of the Party in the region, the four members of the Party group in X had sworn in about 30 candidate-members.

It could be seen that the Party in the region was only a few months old when martial law was imposed in September of 1972.  Two factors could account for the dislocation that occurred thereafter:

Party work in the rural areas had been started only one or two months before the declaration of martial law and therefore, there were not enough rural areas prepared to absorb as many elements as were on the “wanted” list of the enemy.

The Party leadership in Mindanao was not prepared for the imposition of martial law.  It had failed to: 1. form a sufficient underground movement, which the national lead had called for as early as 1971; and 2.  project the consequences of the imposition of martial law and the moves the Party could take to counter it.

Nevertheless, the Party leadership managed basically to preserve itself.  It reassigned a considerable number of advanced activists to the countryside and several urban areas throughout Mindanao. Reassigned activists in urban areas constituted the first city committees, which at first had only three to five members each.

B. Urban Work after the Declaration of Martial Law (September 1972-present)

1.     The first stage in the urban struggle after the declaration of martial law (September 1972-end of 1973) was characterized by two trends:

a.     Its basic role was one of providing technical, material and cadre support for the work in the rural areas which were newly-opened or were in the process of being opened;

b.     It carried over the pre-martial law student activist style of leafleteering, peryodikit, etc., which had resulted in arrests and forced transfers of cadres at a time when the number of organized forces could be counted with the fingers of one hand.

The first trend was correct and indispensable at that stage of the overall struggle.  Since armed struggle is principal, all preliminary efforts at establishing it necessarily fall on the urban areas, which at that stage had just barely enough cadres to work full-time at such a task.

The second trend was definitely incorrect and was put to a stop by the end of 1973, although vestiges remained up to 1975 in one city without the concommitant arrests. Our objection to such a trend at that particular stage of the urban struggle is centered on the fact that it called unnecessary attention to the enemy on the still small and nascent Party organization.

2.     The second stage in the urban struggle during this period (1974-middle of 1975) was characterized by two trends:

a.     the continuance of its basic role of providing cadre, technical and material support for the armed struggle in the countryside; and

b.     as a reaction to the student activist style and methods of work of the previous period, the development of the purely illegal or “cloak and dagger” line, which found organizational expression in the twin concepts of “p.o.t building” (propaganda organizing team) and “man-to-man propaganda”.

These two trends should be thoroughly discussed because they definitely contributed to the slowing down of the growth of the urban mass struggle.

With regard to the first trend: At the beginning of 1974 in most areas and the beginning of 1975 in North-Central Mindanao, the region’s various fronts were still being established or were in the process of being stabilized.  The armed struggle being principal, urban areas were expected to provide many of the needs of the countryside.  It is not surprising therefore that the principal role of the urban areas at such a time necessarily becomes one of providing the cadre, technical and material needs of the fronts.

However, this view becomes incorrect once seen in a static, unchanging light.  Since no preparations whatsoever were made for the transition to revolutionary mass movements, the urban work throughout the whole of the second stage continued to be mainly of establishing posts for various needs, providing logistics for various purposes, and fulfilling other tasks of a highly technical nature.  As a result, allies started to get the feeling that they were being "used” instead of being useful in mass political activity.  By the middle of 1975, technical and material support from allies could not anymore coped with the growing needs of the Party and the NPA, precisely because the principal role of the urban mass struggle  as political support  had been negated.

With regard to the second trend: “Man-to-man propaganda,” viewed as preliminary step to the task of forming groups at all levels -- antifascist orga­nizations, national democratic cells, and Party units -- is not in itself incorrect; in fact, it is indispensable and should never be disregarded. However, when it becomes the main organizational method due to the failure of its opposite (in this case, "p.o.t. building), it becomes a burden rather than an aid to organization.

As for “p.o.t. building,” its failure was due to  the fact that  from start to finish it contained numerous  pitfalls, the primary  one its being part of a long and arduous organizational process which was supposed to start at the “indi­vidual contact" stage, proceed to cell level (defined as study groups), on to the “p.o.t.,” on to the school or community organizing committee, then the school or community committee, up to the municipal or city organizing committee, later the municipal or city committee, to the provincial organizing committee and finally to the provincial committee.

The impossibility of meeting these multilevelled requirements resulted in the creation of very few and loosely organized "p.o.t.s" and a large number of unorganized individual contacts.

Since the formation Party branches and Party groups were entirely neg­lected, these few loose “p.o.t.s” and numerous unorganized contacts were all supervised through the method of "man-to-man propaganda" by small and overburdened city and municipal Party committees composed mostly of cadres not native to the locality.

These twin organizational concepts in the main arose from a wrong political line: which was, that under the strictures of martial law, the only way to organize people in the urban areas is through purely illegal means.  This line in turn developed from the view that urban work is merely an auxiliary technical support to the region's various fronts. When we start directly arousing, mobilizing and organizing people in the white areas to give aid to the armed struggle, we naturally are forced to use “cloak and dagger” methods.

Such being the case, when both middle elements and basic masses were being approached through the concept of “man-to-man propaganda” and organized through the concept of "p.o.t. building," the tasks given inevitably centered around the limiting prospects of establishing posts, procuring money and providing medicines, clothing and other technical needs.

By the middle of 1975, allies and “1p.o.t.s” were not rendering the desired services anymore.  The reaction was to saturate them with heavy educational discussions.  These discussions went as far as dialectical and historical materialism and were expected to achieve the miracle of increasing support from allies and “p.o.t.s.”  However, since most discussants were by no means Party members yet, the emphasis on abstract study merely compounded the problem, achieving the contrary effects of numbing allies into further inaction (in favor empty intellectualizing) disenchanting them with the communist ideology, which they encountered only in theory.

The sorry fact was that as early as 1974 strong antifascist movements were already brewing among the middle forces in Mindanao.  The middle sectors already saw their role of awakening and organizing the basic masses as well as their own peers.

But the Party in Mindanao, concerned as it was at that time with its narrow material needs, was only partly aware of these activities and even consciously avoided involvement in them, thus temporarily losing by default its  leadership within the united front.

This is the way in which the two trends and the chain of errors accompanying them negated the possibility of a sustained and vigorous revolutionary mass move­ment in the cities, concretely, of the needs for mass mobilization and mass actions. It meant the very slow and narrow growth of the urban organization and the subjective forces of the revolution at a stage when the objective conditions were perfectly ripe.

The more concrete effects of the two wrong trends were the following:

a.   The virtual isolation of the Party in. the region from the legal struggle that was slowly developing among the basic masses and middle forces in the region itself.

b. The virtual exclusion of legal personalities from the “underground.”

c. The lack of sustained programs that could have given the overall struggle a more vigorous push.

d. Technical and material resources that could have come in much greater quantity for the armed struggle in the countryside were not availed of.

e. Since very few could come up with the illegal and multilevelled standards set, conservatism in the raising of Party members developed, so that only a limited number of Party members were raised where scores could have been.

The third stage in the urban struggle (latter half of 1975-present) should be divided into two phases:

a. The first phase began with the formation of the Urban Coordinating Group (UCG) in  the middle  part of 1975. This phase is characterized by the efforts of the UCA to correct the orientation on urban work on one hand and the lack of a unified concept regarding this orientation on the other.

b. The second phase began in November 1976 and covers the present period.  This phase is characterized by the Regional Executive Committee's directive that the newly constituted urban organ formulate and execute its own policies.

During the first phase of this stage the UCA was able to formulate the following program:

In the ideological sphere –

a. Develop mass and Party courses that are simpler, more concrete and more practical;

b. Conduct constant assessments and summings up of concrete situations;

c. Conduct constant criticism and self-criticism meetings in a thoroughgoing manner, going to the root of problems.

In the political sphere –

a. Encourage the development of antifascist mass protest actions;

b. Develop p.o.t.s in more communities and legal community organizations;

c. Form or get into legal mass organizations;

d.     Investigate possibilities of getting into the workers' front.

In the organizational sphere –

a. Develop more legal cadres;

b. Triple the present number of full members and candidate-members of the Party.

It can be seen that the above constitutes an advance from the previous stage, in the sense that it starts to recognize the need for mass movements and legal struggles.  However, since the formulation at that time was not comprehensive enough to smash, on the one hand, the old ideas about urban work as technical support and, on the other hand, the twin concepts of "p.o.t. building" and "man-to-man propaganda," the program was not in actual fact implemented thoroughly.

The complete correction to the wrong trends of the past was made possible only after November of 1976.

It is in the spirit of the directive laid down at that time that we set the following guidelines.

The second phase of the third stage in the urban struggle is supportive of the central regional task of expanding the army and creating more guerrilla zones. It does not revert to the old line on pure technical support, but uses the urban struggle to discover the most creative ways of helping the New People’s Army find new entry points in the countryside, to plow the ground and plant the seedlings in the areas where the NPA can do the harvesting.

Very simply, the second phase must have three thrusts:

a. The old line must give way to the following orientation on the urban struggle –

1. The urban struggle is principally a powerful political support for the armed struggle in the countryside.

2. Such being the case, the principal task of the urban areas is to develop the revolutionary mass movements in the region from the key centers. (For full explanation, see Part III.)

The secondary task of the urban areas is to provide cadre, techni­cal and material support for the region's various fronts.

3. In developing the revolutionary mass movements in the region, the urban struggle plows the ground substantially for the entry of the Now People's Army in new areas, as well  as provides the conditions for the rapid growth  of  cadre, technical and material support for the work in the countryside.

b.     The obsolete forms of organization we had in the past must give way to appropriate ones –

1. The first need is the formulation of appropriate Party organs for defined areas of work and the delineation of their functions.

2. The second need is rapid Party expansion, which necessitates the smashing of conservative  (so-called “high”) standards of raising mass activists (nationaI democratic elements) to the level of candidate-members and candidate-members of good standing to full mem­bership.

3. The third need is the formulation of appropriate Party branches and groups on the secondary and tertiary levels.

Our previous reliance on “man-to-man propaganda” as a principal organizational method has made us think of organization in terms of one higher committee handling innumerable loose groups and indivi­dual contacts all on the same level.

We must thoroughly smash this method of work and start thinking in terms of one tightly-knit  higher committee handling a few other tightly-knit committees on the secondary level, each of which  handles its own set of committees on the tertiary level. 

c. The revolutionary experiences that we have accumulated must be raised to a higher level of theory –

1. This means the promotion of theoretical and political discussions within the already-formed Party organs.  These discussions should use Our Urgent Tasks, Party Situation and Policies in Mindanao, this guide material, Habagat, Strengthen the Party Committee  System, and whatever material or documents will come out later.  They should also use whatever background material from Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin and Mao Tsetung are available.

The secretary of each Party organ or unit bears principal responsibility for encouragement of theoretical and political discussions.

The above task does not negate the responsibility of all organs, principally the one for the organization of the basic masses, to come out with mass and Party courses that are simpler, more concrete and more practical – in other words, those which respond to the needs of the worker and urban poor masses.  In fact, theoretical and political discussions within responsible organs and units will provide the very push for the formulation of new mass and Party courses.

III.     THE PARTICULARITY OF THE MINDANAO URBAN STRUGGLE

The particularity of Mindanao's urban areas and the present stage of the armed struggle are the  two factors that determine the specific characteristics of the revolutionary mass movements in the region.

First, Mindanao’s paticularity.  Unlike the major cities of Luzon which are wide and expansive and therefore definitely distinct from its rural areas, Mindanao's cities are urbanized only in so far as their geographical city centers are concerned.  Even Davao City, reputedly the second biggest city in the world in terms of size and certainly the biggest in Mindanao, is still largely a rural area.

Added to this is the fact that most of the so-called cities in the region retain rural characteristics even within their very centers.  In terms of atmosphere and activity, they have more of the character of towns.

The major cities of Mindanao, aside from being small and few, are also far apart.  Unlike Luzon which has in the Metro Manila area one large communications center through which all commerce and industry flow, Mindanao has several di­minutive communications outlets which do not necessarily answer for all needs of contiguous areas.

The rural character of Mindanao’s urban areas, however, is no argument against the necessity for revolutionary mass movements in these areas.  In fact it is the very argument for the more rapid spread of revolutionary mass movements in the whole region from many small cities and towns.  This lack of one large communications center is an advantage rather than a disadvantage to the mass strug­gle, in the sense that it immediately discourages the concentration of most developed subjective forces in one developed area at the expense of many others. It has been aptly demonstrated that mass movements from key city and town centers in Mindanao, once creatively applied and sometimes even without Party leadership, have reached the very hills in which the NPA presently operates.

Second, present stage of the armed struggle.  While the Party recognizes the strategically significant relationship between armed struggle, agrarian re­volution and base building, for tactical purposes it has to recognize a princi­pal stress at a particular period.  It cannot launch all three at the same time, giving all equal weight.

Armed with the basic principle that political power grows out of the barrel of a gun, the Party first of all must strengthen the people’s army before it goes on an all-out campaign to wage agrarian revolution and build a thoroughly consolidated mass base. Experience has proven that all efforts at agrarian revolution and base-building, no matter how painstaking, could very easily be wrecked by the enemy without the backing of a strong and well-armed people's army.

This does not mean that the Party in Mindanao should completely disregard  base-building and agrarian  revolution at this time.  In terms of stress, however, organizational efforts towards this end are now necessarily at a low level.  The New People's Army engages in core building as well as forms small mutual aid groups.  Tested core members later become part of small Party branches.  For now this is the extent of organization that the present level of our forces can muster.

At a time when the NPA has attained relative strength and expanded its territory to a significant extent, the principal stress of work in the countryside could already shift to building relatively consolidated mass bases.  This is the time when we could say that the NPA could truly start developing the revolution­ary mass movements in the countryside from the viewpoint of forming organs of political power.

For now, however, the central regional task is still to expand the army and create more guerrilla zones.  Towards this end, the NPA undertakes its current principal task of waging military operations to strengthen itself.

This is where the role of the urban struggle, or more accurately, the revolutionary mass movements launched from key town and city centers, attains particular significance.  For while the masses in the countryside and semi-countryside areas cannot at this time be consolidated within solid organs of political power (in the style of BOCs and BRCs), they can certainly participate actively in the exercise of people's power.  Such exercises can be adequately provided by the urban struggle as long as:  1) there is a proper combination of the illegal with the legal struggle and 2) the weapon of propaganda with its national and international dimensions is wielded well.

These are the particularities of the Mindanao urban struggle that dictate its current principal task of  broadening and deepening  the revolutionary mass movements in the region from key cities and town centers.

 

IV.  THEORETICAL BASIS FOR UNITED FRONT WORK 

Our understanding of united front work must be put in the context of main task of the national democratic revolution.

 As contained in the general program of the Party, the revolutionary struggle seeks to overthrow US imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism, the three evils that exploit and oppress the broad masses of the Filipino people. With the seizure of state power through the national democratic revolution, we immediately embark upon the socialist revolution.

At the present stage of the struggle, the principal contradiction is that between the US-Marcos dictatorship and the broad masses of the Filipino peo­ple.  The broad masses of the Filipino people constitute the motive forces  of the revolution.  These motive forces include the proletariat, which is the leading force; the peasantry, which is the main force; the petty bourgeoisie; and the national bourgeoisie.

At the same time, the dictatorship's reckless drive for monopoly has created within the ranks of the ruling classes, the landlord class and the comprador big bourgeoisie, innumerable splits which give the revolutionary forces a chance to further isolate its main enemy.

 The Party in its vanguard role in the revolution wields three powerful wea­pons:  Party building, armed struggle and the national united front.

 The Party launches the armed revolution as the main form of struggle and the New People's Army as its main form of mass organization.  Without the armed struggle, all other tasks the Party may set will come to nothing.  The armed revolution is the main weapon by which political power is seized.

 At the same time, the Party builds its independent strength as the Party of the proletariat.  From the ranks of the New People's Army, the trade unions and other mass organizations, the Party draws into its membership the most advanced elements, thus making itself truly the vanguard detachments and general staff of the Philippine revolution.  It also makes sure that the majority of the members come from the ranks of the workers and peasants.

Through the national united front, the Party widens its political influence and wins the broadest support of the basic masses and the middle forces and sectors.  The national united front is built on the solid foundation of the worker-peasant alliance.  Without this solid foundation, other motive forces like the petty bourgeoisie and the national bourgeoisie cannot be encouraged to push through the united front against the diehard enemies of the revolution.

In the urban areas, we must always be clear about what united front work entails.

When we speak of united front work, we speak of two thrusts:  principally, the thrust towards the basic masses, which is composed as classes of workers and peasants, and as special groups, of the urban poor, fishermen and lower echelons of the national minorities; and secondarily, the thrust towards the middle forces, which is composed as classes of the petty bourgeoisie and the national bourgeoisie, but which can also be divided into various sectors and special groups.

With regard to the basic masses, it is very clear that our task is to arouse, mobilize and organize them in great numbers. The only way we can do this is to be sensitive to their economic and political problems and to organize them on that basis.  Starting from narrow economic and/or political demands, we must clarify, heighten and deepen the struggles of the basic masses, giving it a broad anti-imperialist, antifascist and antifeudal perspective.

With regard to the middle forces, our tasks are two-fold: first, to win them over in order to isolate the enemy diehards; and second, to link them with the struggles of the basic masses.

In order to win over the middle forces, the Party must promote a broad anti­fascist struggle among them, clarifying, heightening and deepening this anti­fascist struggle and drawing it ever closer to the anti-imperialist and antifeudal struggle.

The Party links the middle forces with the basic masses to make them realize that only through unity can decisive victory be achieved over US imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism.  This task of linking is crucial in united front work as the Party must niake it clear to the broad forces of the revolution that the class standpoint of the revolutionary struggle is that of the proletariat and that the legitimate demands of the middle fortes are in harmony with that of the masses.

The national united front, with its worker-peasant base, is our indispensable instrument in winning over the middle forces and sectors to the side of the revolution, thereby isolating enemy diehards.

Three conditions are necessary for the Party to sustain its leadership with­in the united front: first, it must have ample strength; second, it must steadily win victories against the enemy diehards; and third, it must respect the legitimate interests as well as the independence and initiative of the middle forces within the united front.

By “ample strength” we mean not only the quantity of Party membership nor the quality of Party consolidation and the Party machinery; we also mean the quantitative and qualitative strength of the New People's Army and the mass orga­nizations of workers and peasants.

By “steadily winning victories against the enemy,” we mean not only military victories achieved by the New People's Army; we a1so mean the small, day-to-day battles the Party wages hand-in-hand with the masses on the political, economic and cultural fronts.

By “respecting the legitimate interests as well as the independence and initiative of the middle forces within the united front,” we mean the Party's respect for the differing programmes drawn by these forces, the Party's capabi­lity to struggle with its friends on points of disagreement in a non-antagonistic, persuasive and patient, as opposed to a harsh and impetuous manner.  By it we mean the Party's ability to lead without imposing, to guide without controlling and to unite and struggle without manipulating.  These things the Party can do basically because it has both the humility and the courage to regard all forces within the united front as its equals.

The above is within the range of the Party's united front policy principally of forging common points of unity with the middle forces and, whenever necessary, of waging struggles with them “on just grounds, to our advantage, and with restraint.”

 

IN SUM, our united front work among the middle forces can only be as good as our revolutionary work in three other spheres –

1. our effectivity in drawing the basic masses to the spearhead of revolutionary mass movement;

2. the speed with which the NPA spreads the armed struggle in the countryside; and

3. the assurance that our Party is a strong and consolidated Party, with a well-oiled machinery capable of warding off corrosion and attacks.

 

V.  THE CORRECT POLITICAL LINE ON UNITED FRONT WORK

What are the objective conditions of the middle forces in Mindanao?  What is their role in the national democratic revolution?

Classes within the middle sectors composing the middle forces.  The middle forces are composed mainly of the petty bourgeoisie, the national bourgeoisie and small landlord gentry.

The petty bourgeoisie is characterized by relative economic self-sufficiency due to the possession of special skills or training or ownership of some means of production.  They have generally fixed incomes and may have economic surplus depending on their levels of income and standards of living.  They consist of lower, middle and upper income strata. They include the vast majority of the intelligentsia like teachers, students, professionals, government and private business employees, small proprietors, traders and merchants.

The national bourgeoisie are those local capitalists engaged in manufacturing, using indigenous capital. Their business activities range from cottage industries and light manufacturing to intermediate industries highly dependent on imported raw materials.  Typical economic interests of this class include manufacturing of simple agricultural implements, shoes and leather, cement and concrete pro­ducts, coconut oil, lumber, scrap metal  products, educational  materials, etc.  Many of its members are landlords who use their property as collateral in getting loans for their investment projects.  There is a need to determine the extent and concentration of this class in Mindanao.

Many members of the small landlord gentry on the other hand, also function as members of the middle and upper petty bourgeoisie.  To determine the main characteristic of such people, one has to find out their main source of income.

Due to the particularity of the Mindanao urban struggle, we also include in our united front work among the middle sectors those middle peasants  (the petty bourgeoisie of the countryside) and rich peasants (the national bourgeoisie of the countryside) who through their membership in various associations exert a profound influence on programs that make possible the exercise of people’s power.

Their political attitudes.  The clampdown on democratic rights by the fascist dictatorship has had strong effects on the political attitudes of the middle forces.  Those affected severely by the restrictions of martial rule harbor strong sentiments and attitudes against the dictatorship, however fragmented and not thoroughly consolidated these attitudes are. Their attitudes towards martial law vary according to the degree to which the dictatorship clamps down on their particular activities and interests.

We could divide the middle forces into three sections in accordance with their varying political attitudes.

1. The advanced section, which is desirous of revolution, that is, open to armed struggle and leadership of the Party; has a positive attitude towards the masses; and is willing to work for the revolution in an organized way by joining our progressive, anti-imperialist and democratic organizations and groups.

2. The middle section, which is conscious of the need for basic change in Philippine society; has mixed positive and negative attitudes towards the masses; but is not yet actively involved in our mass organizations due to various hang-ups about the movement or fears about the suppression campaigns of the fascist dictatorship.

3. The backward section, which is still very much influenced by the reactionary classes or in one way or the other benefit from the spoils of the dictatorship’s economic plunder, however much in trickles. As a result, members of this section express reactionary views, are distrustful of the masses and would not want to participate in any revolutionary activity.

Among the middle forces, the backward section is susceptible to manipulation by the enemy and by the reactionaries in general towards a counterrevolutionary direction. Due to this susceptibility, we must firmly combat the policy of the “social democrat” diehards and their likes of  “critical collaboration”  with  the fascist dictatorship.  Together with their “observe, document and monitor” line which plainly negates the linking up of the middle forces with the toiling masses of workers and peasants, this policy rides on the conservative sentiments of the backward section so as to paralyze and render ineffective the middle section and contain or reverse the revolutionary course of the advanced section.

While we recognize that most of the “social democrats” are merely middle or backward elements beguiled and misled by the idealist and metaphysical philosophy behind “socrial democracy,” we are also aware that the “social democrat” diehards are pnrveyors mainly of the official Western, brand of “social democracy” and are heavily financed by the CIA.

Acting in behalf of the local reactionary classes of big comprador-landlords, the policy of these diehards and their likes is to seek the isolation of the advanced section and subject this section to an “anticommunist” witchhunt, thus serving the fascist dictatorship in its policy of outright suppression.

Flattering the middle forces, especially the intelligentsia, as holding the leadership over the masses in the struggle against the fascist dictatorship, they try to dissuade the backward and middle sections from actively involving themselves in the struggle, thus keeping the backward section backward and luring the middle section also to take a backward course.

The correct political line.  What therefore is the correct political line in our united front work with the middle  forces? How do we arouse, mobilize and organize the middle forces and sections to the side of the revolution?

Under a proletarian revolutionary leadership, we must  firmly carry out a united front policy or relying on the worker-peasant alliance, winning over the middle forces and taking advantage of the splits among the reactionaries to  isolate and destroy the main enemy – the US-Marcos dictatorship.

In dealing with the middle forces, we must firmly link the advanced section with the basic masses in their revolutionary movements, persistently attract the middle section to participate in these movements, wean away the backward section from conservative and reactionary influence and thus swing the entirety of the middle forces to the revolutionary cause.  We must consciously counteract the tactics of the “social democrat” diehards and their likes in the attempt to mislead the middle forces  with “anticommunist” prejudices as we put the stress on the anti-imperialist, antifascist and  antifeudal unity of the toiling masses and middle forces.

We also recognize that certain sectors within the middle forces have parti­cular characteristics that can greatly hasten the development of the revolution­ary mass movement, not only in the cities but in the countryside of the Mindanao region as well.  Due to their place in Philippine society, such middle forces are already organized in groups to work with the basic masses and have longstand­ing and effective ties with them.  As such, they are in touch with the masses even if they do not have a consolidated outlook or consciousness about the basic problems of the masses, nor fully understand the strategy and tactics of the people’s democratic revolution as the key solutions to these problems.

Conducting organized political work among the ranks of the middle sectors will enable the Party to achieve two things: first, the revolutionary experiences of the middle forces and their openness to work in a united front will greatly aid us in reaching the masses in their millions.  Second, we will be able to conduct principled struggles  with them on ideological and political questions, thus achieving a stronger, firmer unity among our friends.

This means that it is not only necessary but fundamental that we have the proper Party organ and committees to oversee work among the middle forces and effectively implement our policy regarding them.  We need appropriate bodies to define clearly the central thrust of work within the middle sectors in each area, in each place and in particular struggles.

The appropriate Party organ should be at the core of revolutionary acti­vities in order for our mass movement to be firm, vigorous and well-directed.  It must guide open and legal mass mobilizations step by step and must see to it that these are raised to a higher degree upon the ripening of conditions.

It is in this context that the building of the regional united front commission becomes our urgent organizational task at this stage of the struggle against the US-Marcos dictatorship.

 

 

 


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