International Conference «For historical truth and mirror reflection of the times"

Contribution of the PCP by Luis Carapinha - Moscow, 24-25th May, 2010

Dear Comrades, esteemed friends

The present conference is a timely initiative of great political significance, which the PCP salutes, thanking the invitation of CPRF to participate.
At a time when Humanity celebrates the 65º anniversary of the Victory over Nazi-fascism, a vast international campaign by imperialism to falsify and rewrite History is being intensified. Since Marx we have know that the dominant ideology of a class society is always, in its essence, configured as a "false consciousness", a fact which is blatantly clear today, when the most serious economic crisis since the Great Depression once more shakes the foundations of the so-called economic rationality of Capitalism.

Under the false mantle of a spent modernity, the campaign to manipulate History reveals itself in our days as a perverse and obscurantist weapon of propaganda at the service of Big Capital, and its goal to draw up a new and, increasingly, anti-democratic world order. A campaign that, openly or covertly, has reached the point of ignoring the decisions of the International Tribunal of Nuremberg, whitewashing the fascist crimes and seeking to place Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union on an equal footing. 

In these times in which anticommunism becomes a weapon of the ruling classes; in which former members of the legions that fought with Hitler's SS march with impunity in the streets of Riga and Tallin; in which, as occurred recently under the "orange power" in the Ukraine, we witness a scandalous rehabilitation and enthroning of fascistic nationalist movements and personalities; it is of increasingly fundamental importance to preserve the memory, re-establish historical truth and make it increasingly well-known.

It is essential to prevent that the lessons of the past be forgotten. And it is necessary to recall some fundamental and structural aspects of a truthful historical analysis of the XXth century.

It is therefore important to recall that fascism was a "creation" of the dominant classes that is inseparable from the context of a profound crisis of the capitalist system.

To recall that the ascent of the fascist political forces and leaders was promoted and financed by big monopoly capital, as a terrorist instrument of alienation of the masses and to fight against the rights of workers and the struggle of the peoples, against communists and the revolutionary perspective of socialist transformations, at the time led by the ongoing experience in the USSR. We need to underline that the German national-socialism and Nazi-fascism are largely a "natural" result of capitalism -- given then existing forms of the concrete historic conditions -- and not a stigma of germanism or, even less so, the specific product of a sick personality.

We need to recall that the fascist regimes embodied by Hitler and Mussolini, as well as by Franco and, in our country, Salazar, among others, counted on the shameful complicity, if not open support, of the so-called liberal bourgeois democracies.

In defence of historic truth, it is vital to recall that it was the "democratic" governments of France and England that delivered, in 1938, Czechoslovakia to German imperialism embodied by the Nazi-fascist regime of Hitler; that other bourgeois governments of European countries, such as Poland, also took part in this carve-up. We must recall that the outrageous Munich summit in 1938 and the policy of "appeasement" of German fascism and imperialism, far from taming the beast, opened wide the doors to the unleashing of the most destructive and deadly war in History, condensing the cynical and hypocritical posture of the main capitalist powers. And we also need to recall how this has parallels with the present times, differences in context aside!

It is necessary to affirm the crucial role played by communists and the working class in the struggle against fascism. Remember that, while the bourgeoisie and its governments acquiesced before fascism, shamefully capitulated and betrayed national interests (of which the delivery of Pétain's France is an eloquent example), it was the communists that fulfilled the front line role in the popular anti-fascist resistances, mobilizing and organizing the struggle of the workers and the masses.

Similarly, and despite the reiteration and glorification, in the West, of the Normandy landing in 1944, it is impossible to erase the crystal-clear truth that the USSR made the decisive contribution towards the victory over Nazi-fascism and the liberation of Europe from its grasp. The USSR, the Soviet people, the Soviet communists and the Red Army were the main actors of the Victory, a fact immortalized in the heroic battles of Leningrad, Moscow, Stalingrad, Kursk and Berlin. This event had enormous repercussions upon all the progressive and revolutionary advances that subsequently took place in the world and, firstly, in the emergence of a new international order, enshrined in the foundation of the United Nations and the fundamental principals of its Charter, which incidentally, is presently a priority target of imperialism in its attempt to erect a new hegemonic world order.

In our country, and since 1926, the PCP clandestinely never stopped developing its own patriotic and internationalist line against the fascist regime. Portugal did not participate in World War II, but Salazar collaborated with Nazi Germany (namely through significant supplies of food and minerals). The war years were important years in the process of reorganization of our Party, during which the PCP became an important national party. A Marxist-Leninist Party forged in the people´s struggles on the front lines of the struggle against the shortages resulting from the collaboration with fascist Germany, a Party that organized strikes and struggles for the rights of the people, the workers and all Portuguese. The arduous anti-fascist resistance consolidated and strengthened the prestige of the PCP among the workers, intellectuals and the Portuguese people, and in turn contributed to the strengthening of the unity of all democratic and anti-fascist forces in Portugal.

The transformation of the PCP in the 1940s, into a large national party is inseparable from the prestige achieved by the homeland of Lenin, the USSR. But despite the profound impact in our country resulting from the victory over Nazi-fascism -- which forced tactical concessions from the regime -- the illusions of a rapid democratization by the "bourgeois democracies" fostered by some sectors were quickly dissipated. It is timely to recall, at a time when the values of democracy are invoked to mask the imperialist offensive, that Portugal under the fascist regime of Salazar was a founding member of NATO, in 1949. The anti-Soviet and anti-communist alliances which emerged right after World War II included the Portugal of Salazar. The fascist dictatorship would only be overthrown by the Carnation Revolution of 25th April 1974, as a result of the persistent struggle of the Portuguese people and the peoples of the colonies.

The world situation is still difficult, uncertain and full of threats. NATO not only survived the Cold War but reinforced its role as the armed wing of US and EU imperialism. In November they are preparing, once more, to review their strategic concept, in the Summit scheduled for Lisbon, in an attempt to enshrine it as the Armed Forces for global action.

Our times continue to be marked by the objective and subjective difficulties, resulting from the historic defeats of socialism in the USSR and Eastern Europe, and the global offensive of big capital, which was substantially strengthened by these defeats. Economic transformations associated to the growing use and control by capitalism of technical-scientific achievements, the changes in the forms of production and the processes of capitalist globalization and commodification make the organized struggle of the proletariat and their revolutionary organizations harder and more complex. History teaches, however, that it is indispensable to have confidence in the struggle of the workers, the masses and the peoples. The determination, coherence and confidence in the struggle demonstrate -- as in the dark days in which the shadow of fascism covered Europe -- that, yes, it is possible to achieve our objectives in the emancipating struggle for a qualitatively better world, in which the true alternative is Socialism.

Precisely the confidence and determination revealed in the great victory of the Soviet people in World War II, which no whitewashing and falsification of History can make us forget.

Portuguese Communist Party
May 2010

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