In Defense Of The Vanguard Party 2

In the original article where I wrote a defense of the vanguard party, I explained what the vanguard party is, what it’s supposed to do, and exposed the common fallacies used against the vanguard party. However apparently this hasn’t really gotten through to the people who responded to the article, and instead kept insisting that claiming it wasn’t perfect (i.e. didn’t (supposedly) lead to socialism, (supposedly) leads to a bureaucracy etc.) is considered a valid refutation of the vanguard party, but as I explained in the previous article, exposing the (supposed) imperfections of the vanguard party (instead of showing why the alternative you are proposing is better than the vanguard party) is committing the nirvana fallacy, and as such there isn’t necessarily a need for refuting their claims, because even when we assume their accusations are correct, it still remains fallacious.

On top of the fact that people continue to commit the nirvana fallacy, I’m also constantly being attacked with strawman arguments, where time and time again the critics of the vanguard party don’t seem to understand what the vanguard party is, despite the fact that I had explained in the previous article what it is, so in addition to this I will instead of showing what the vanguard party is, show what the vanguard party is not (to clear up the issue even further and to attempt to get rid of all the strawman arguments against the vanguard party).

What the vanguard party is not (as in contrast to the claims made by critics of the vanguard party), is a;

Bureaucratic elite that cannot be challenged in any way and that people are supposed to blindly follow, because anything that’s good for the party is good for the people.

So allow me to give some quotations by people who advocated/used the vanguard party on the issue of bureaucracy.

Allow me to quote Lenin first;

“In the matter of improving our state apparatus, the Workers’ and Peasants’ Inspection should not, in my opinion, either strive after quantity or hurry. We have so far been able to devote so little thought and attention to the efficiency of our state apparatus that it would now be quite legitimate if we took special care to secure its thorough organisation, and concentrated in the Workers’ and Peasants’ Inspection a staff of workers really abreast of the times, i.e., not inferior to the best West-European standards. For a socialist republic this condition is, of course, too modest. But our experience of the first five years has fairly crammed our heads with mistrust and scepticism. These qualities assert themselves involuntarily when, for example, we hear people dilating at too great length and too flippantly on “proletarian” culture. For a start, we should be satisfied with real bourgeois culture; for a start we should be glad to dispense with the crude types of pre-bourgeois culture, i.e., bureaucratic culture or serf culture, etc. In matters of culture, haste and sweeping measures are most harmful. Many of our young writers and Communists should get this well into their heads.”

– Vladimir Lenin, Better Fewer, But Better

“But what interests us is not the inevitability of this complete victory of socialism, but the tactics which we, the Russian Communist Party, we the Russian Soviet Government, should pursue to prevent the West-European counter-revolutionary states form crushing us. To ensure our existence until the next military conflict between the counter-revolutionary imperialist West and the revolutionary and nationalist East, between the most civilized countries of the world and the Orientally backward countries which, however, compromise the majority, this majority must become civilized. We, too, lack enough civilization to enable us to pass straight on to socialism, although we do have the political requisites for it. We should adopt the following tactics, or pursue the following policy, to save ourselves.

We must strive to build up a state in which the workers retain leadership of the peasants, in which they retain the confidence of the peasants, and by exercising the greatest economy remove every trace of extravagance from our social relations. We must reduce our state apparatus to the utmost degree of economy. We must banish from it all traces of extravagance, of which so much has been left over from tsarist Russia, from its bureaucratic capitalist state machine.”

– Vladimir Lenin, Better Fewer, But Better

And subsequently, here is Stalin on the issue of bureaucracy;

“What did the grain-procurement difficulties reveal? They revealed that the kulak was not asleep, that the kulak was growing, that he was busy undermining the policy of the Soviet government, while our Party, Soviet and co-operative organisations—at all events, some of them—either failed to see the enemy, or adapted themselves to him instead of fighting him.
Hence the new stress laid on the slogan of self-criticism, on the slogan of checking and improving our Party, co-operative and procurement organisations generally.

Further, in connection with the new tasks of reconstructing industry and agriculture on the basis of socialism, there arose the slogan of systematically reducing production costs, of strengthening labour discipline, of developing socialist emulation, etc. These tasks called for a revision of the entire activities of the trade unions and Soviet apparatus, for radical measures to put new life into these organisations and for purging them of bureaucratic elements.

Hence the stress laid on the slogan of fighting bureaucracy in the trade unions and in the Soviet apparatus.

Finally, the slogan of purging the Party. It would be ridiculous to think that it is possible to strengthen our Soviet-economic, trade-union and co-operative organisations, that it is possible to purge them of thedross of bureaucracy, without giving a sharp edge to the Party itself. There can be no doubt that bureaucratic elements exist not only in the economic and cooperative, trade-union and Soviet organizations, but in the organizations of the Party itself. Since the party is the guiding force of all these organisations, it is obvious that purging the Party is the essential condition for thoroughly revitalising and improving all the other organisations of the working class. Hence the slogan of purging the Party.

Are these slogans a matter of accident? No, they are not. You see yourselves that they are not accidental. They are necessary links in the single continuous chain which is called the offensive of socialism against the elements of capitalism.

– Josef Stalin, The Right Deviation In The C.P.S.U.

“The struggle between the old and the new, between the dying and the nascent—there you have the basis of our development. By failing to note and bring to light openly and honestly, as befits Bolsheviks, the defects and mistakes in our work, we close our road to progress. But we want to go forward. And precisely because we want to go forward we must make honest and revolutionary self-criticism one of our most important tasks. Without this there is no progress. Without this there is no development.

But it is precisely along this line that things with us are still in a bad way. More than that, it is enough for us to achieve a few successes to forget about the shortcomings, to take it easy and get conceited. Two or three big successes—and already we become reckless. Another two or three big successes—and already we become conceited, we expect a “walk-over”! But the mistakes remain, the defects continue to exist, the ulcers are driven inwards into the organism of the Party and the Party begins to sicken.

A second shortcoming. It consists in introducing administrative methods in the Party, in replacing the method of persuasion, which is of decisive importance for the Party, by the method of administration. This shortcoming is a danger no less serious than the first one. Why? Because it creates the danger of our Party organisations, which are independently acting organisations, being converted into mere bureaucratic institutions. If we take into account that we have not less than 60,000 of the most active officials distributed among all sorts of economic, co-operative and state institutions, where they are fighting bureaucracy, it must be admitted that some of them, while fighting bureaucracy in those institutions, sometimes become infected with bureaucracy themselves and carry that infection into the Party organisation. And this is not our fault, comrades, but our misfortune, for that process will continue to a greater or lesser degree as long as the state exists. And precisely because that process has some roots in life, we must arm ourselves for the struggle against this shortcoming, we must raise the activity of the mass of the Party membership, draw them into the decision of questions concerning our Party leadership, systematically implant inner-Party democracy and prevent the method of persuasion in our Party practice being replaced by the method of administration.”

– Josef Stalin, Fifteenth Congress Of The C.P.S.U.

And in addition to Lenin and Stalin, I’d like to include Mao on the issue of bureaucracy;

“The task of combating bureaucracy, commandism and violations of the law and of discipline should arouse the attention of our leading bodies at all levels.”

– Mao Zedong, Combat Bureaucracy, Commandism And Violations Of The Law And Of Discipline

“The struggle against corruption, waste and bureaucracy should be stressed as much as the struggle to suppress counter-revolutionaries. As in the latter, the broad masses, including the democratic parties and also people in all walks of life, should be mobilized, the present struggle should be given wide publicity, the leading cadres should take personal charge and pitch in, and people should be called on to make a clean breast of their own wrongdoing and to report on the guilt of others. In minor cases the guilty should be criticized and educated; in major ones the guilty should be dismissed from office, punished, or sentenced to prison terms (to be reformed through labour), and the worst among them should be shot. The problem can only be solved in these ways.”

Mao Zedong, On The Struggle Against The “Three Evils” And The “Five Evils”

And lastly, I’d also like to quote Hoxha on the issue of bureaucracy;

“A large number of communists are working in these organizations, and the work at the base is heavily dependent on their work. It has to be said that the deficiencies which lead to failure by various enterprises to fulfil the targets of the plan are often connected with the weaknesses of the central administration in the work of giving leadership and assistance to the base. Therefore efforts must be made to enhance the role of the party organizations of this apparatus for the overall improvement of its work. In this direction, the party basic organizations which are working in the government departments and other central institutions, as well as those of the local executive
committees, or other administrative bodies at district level, must further extend the range of problems with which they deal, aiming mainly at the struggle against bureaucracy, at the strengthening of the work of concrete management, in order to give the base greater and more effective assistance.”

– Enver Hoxha, Selected Works Volume 3 – Report to the 4th Congress of the PLA

“Marxism-Leninism is not a monopoly of a privileged few who «have the brains» to understand it. It is the scientific ideology of the working class and the working masses, and only when its ideas are grasped by the broad working masses does it cease to be something abstract and is turned into a great material force for the revolutionary transformation of the world. The historic task of our Party is to continually deepen the ideological and cultural revolution and carry it through to the end by r e l y i n g on the masses of workers, peasants, soldiers, cadres and the intelligentsia and drawing them actively into creative revolutionary activity.”

– Enver Hoxha, Selected Works Volume 4 – Report to the 5th Congress of the PLA

As we can see there is a consistent anti-bureaucracy line among people that supported/used the vanguard party, although some may claim that in practice it was different, but in that case the burden of proof is on them to show that this was the case. In any event, the argument has been effectively dealt with.

In this next section I will be dealing with some actual arguments that have been brought up against the vanguard party (although they don’t necessarily refute the idea of the vanguard party, but I thought they were still worth the time of dealing with them);

The first argument that was brought up goes as follows;

We don’t just need a vanguard party, but we also need permanent revolution

One cannot help but note the fact that this argument does not hold up when confronted with reality, as it should be obvious to anyone that permanent revolution hasn’t lead to socialism anywhere, whereas the Marxist-Leninist alternative had spread socialism all across the world; from central/eastern Europe, to Russia, to parts of Asia, parts of Africa and even parts of Latin America (One might attempt to argue that Marxism-Leninism never lead to socialism, but in the first article I made an argument showing that the USSR was socialist (which so far nobody has even attempted to refute and as such the argument still stands)).

In addition to this, the argument simply boils down to question begging, as it is just asserting that we need “permanent revolution” and no argument was given as to why we supposedly need it. However in the future I will actually be dealing with the theories put forth by Trotsky and to show why they are incorrect in extensive detail (since this article is about defending the vanguard party and not specifically about refuting Trotskyism there is no need for me to do it here).

The next argument that was put forth goes something like this;

History shows that the social relations change in accordance with the increase of technology, and therefore there is no need for a vanguard party

What we can obviously see here, is that the person who made the argument is appealing to a correlation between an increase in technology and changes within the social relations, but as we all know; correlation does not equal causation, and as such the argument is simply fallacious, as it ignores the revolutions that had to take place until new social relations/powerstructures were actually formed. This was already analysed by Marx and Engels as we can see here;

“The history of all hitherto existing society(2) is the history of class struggles. Freeman and slave, patrician and plebeian, lord and serf, guild-master(3) and journeyman, in a word, oppressor and oppressed, stood in constant opposition to one another, carried on an uninterrupted, now hidden, now open fight, a fight that each time ended, either in a revolutionary reconstitution of society at large, or in the common ruin of the contending classes.

In the earlier epochs of history, we find almost everywhere a complicated arrangement of society into various orders, a manifold gradation of social rank. In ancient Rome we have patricians, knights, plebeians, slaves; in the Middle Ages, feudal lords, vassals, guild-masters, journeymen, apprentices, serfs; in almost all of these classes, again, subordinate gradations.

The modern bourgeois society that has sprouted from the ruins of feudal society has not done away with class antagonisms. It has but established new classes, new conditions of oppression, new forms of struggle in place of the old ones.

Our epoch, the epoch of the bourgeoisie, possesses, however, this distinct feature: it has simplified class antagonisms. Society as a whole is more and more splitting up into two great hostile camps, into two great classes directly facing each other — Bourgeoisie and Proletariat.

From the serfs of the Middle Ages sprang the chartered burghers of the earliest towns. From these burgesses the first elements of the bourgeoisie were developed.

The discovery of America, the rounding of the Cape, opened up fresh ground for the rising bourgeoisie. The East-Indian and Chinese markets, the colonisation of America, trade with the colonies, the increase in the means of exchange and in commodities generally, gave to commerce, to navigation, to industry, an impulse never before known, and thereby, to the revolutionary element in the tottering feudal society, a rapid development.

The feudal system of industry, in which industrial production was monopolised by closed guilds, now no longer sufficed for the growing wants of the new markets. The manufacturing system took its place. The guild-masters were pushed on one side by the manufacturing middle class; division of labour between the different corporate guilds vanished in the face of division of labour in each single workshop.

Meantime the markets kept ever growing, the demand ever rising. Even manufacturer no longer sufficed. Thereupon, steam and machinery revolutionised industrial production. The place of manufacture was taken by the giant, Modern Industry; the place of the industrial middle class by industrial millionaires, the leaders of the whole industrial armies, the modern bourgeois.

Modern industry has established the world market, for which the discovery of America paved the way. This market has given an immense development to commerce, to navigation, to communication by land. This development has, in its turn, reacted on the extension of industry; and in proportion as industry, commerce, navigation, railways extended, in the same proportion the bourgeoisie developed, increased its capital, and pushed into the background every class handed down from the Middle Ages.

We see, therefore, how the modern bourgeoisie is itself the product of a long course of development, of a series of revolutions in the modes of production and of exchange.”

– Karl Marx & Friedrich Engels, Manifesto of the Communist Party – Chapter 1. Bourgeois and Proletarians

As to why the marxist analysis of history is correct, here is a book that explains it;

G.A. Cohen, Karl Marx’ Theory Of History: A Defence (which can be read here;

This concept is nothing new; that an increase in technology can lead towards socialism, this is what Friedrich Engels in essence called; “Utopian Socialism”, as can be seen in the following quote by Engels;

“The Utopians’ mode of thought has for a long time governed the Socialist ideas of the 19th century, and still governs some of them. Until very recently, all French and English Socialists did homage to it. The earlier German Communism, including that of Weitling, was of the same school. To all these, Socialism is the expression of absolute truth, reason and justice, and has only to be discovered to conquer all the world by virtue of its own power. And as an absolute truth is independent of time, space, and of the historical development of man, it is a mere accident when and where it is discovered. With all this, absolute truth, reason, and justice are different with the founder of each different school. And as each one’s special kind of absolute truth, reason, and justice is again conditioned by his subjective understanding, his conditions of existence, the measure of his knowledge and his intellectual training, there is no other ending possible in this conflict of absolute truths than that they shall be mutually exclusive of one another. Hence, from this nothing could come but a kind of eclectic, average Socialism, which, as a matter of fact, has up to the present time dominated the minds of most of the socialist workers in France and England. Hence, a mish-mash allowing of the most manifold shades of opinion: a mish-mash of such critical statements, economic theories, pictures of future society by the founders of different sects, as excite a minimum of opposition; a mish-mash which is the more easily brewed the more definite sharp edges of the individual constituents are rubbed down in the stream of debate, like rounded pebbles in a brook.

To make a science of Socialism, it had first to be placed upon a real basis.”

– Friedrich Engels, Socialism: Utopian and Scientific – Chapter 1: The Development of Utopian Socialism

As to see Engels’ refutation as he wrote in Socialism: Utopian and Scientific towards this concept of achieving socialism, one would simply have to read the entire book, which can be read here;

Another argument I would like to deal with goes something like this;

The anarchists only lost because they were outnumbered/outgunned and therefore there is no need for a vanguard party

Now some people may be skeptical here and say that there are a lot more factors that attributed to the defeat of the anarchists (such as in Spain for example), however that is not the point of this article and as such I will instead be purely focusing on the argument that was made here (regardless of the correctness/incorrectness of the premise of this argument). So allow me to continue to give a refutation of the actual argument;

The first criticism one could make is that it shows that the vanguard party is much more effective at spreading class consciousness and getting people on board for the revolution, since afterall the vanguardists were (supposedly) not outnumbered, and thus it once again validates the argument proposed in favour of the vanguard party, that it is the most effective means of getting the people under the wing of the revolutionary proletariat, as opposed to the anarchist alternative.

In addition to this I would also like to make it clear that there were several revolutions under the leadership of a vanguard party that despite being outnumbered, were still victorious, in this case I’ll take the Cuban revolution as an example.

So allow me to quote an article on the Cuban revolution;

“Assault on Moncada:

On the morning of July 26, 1953, Castro made his move. For a revolution to succeed, he needed weapons, and he selected the isolated Moncada barracks as his target. 138 men attacked the compound at dawn: it was hoped that the element of surprise would make up for the rebels’ lack of numbers and arms. The attack was a fiasco almost from the start and the rebels were routed after a firefight that lasted a few hours. Many were captured. Nineteen federal soldiers were killed, and the remaining ones took out their anger on captured rebels and most of them were shot. Fidel and Raul Castro escaped, but were captured later.

“History Will Absolve Me”:

The Castros and surviving rebels were put on public trial. Fidel, a trained lawyer, turned the tables on the Batista dictatorship by making the trial about the power grab. Basically, his argument was that as a loyal Cuban, he had taken up arms against the dictatorship because it was his civic duty. He made long speeches and the government belatedly tried to shut him up by claiming he was too ill to attend his own trial. His most famous quote from the trial was “History will absolve me.” He was sentenced to fifteen years in prison, but had become a nationally recognized figure and a hero to many poor Cubans.

Mexico and the Granma:

In May of 1955 the Batista government, bending to international pressure to reform, released many political prisoners, including those who had taken part in the Moncada assault. Fidel and Raul Castro went to Mexico to regroup and plan the next step in the revolution. There they met up with many disaffected Cuban exiles who joined the new “26th of July Movement,” named after the date of the Moncada assault. Among the new recruits were charismatic Cuban exile Camilo Cienfuegos and Argentine doctor Ernesto “Ché” Guevara. In November, 1956, 82 men crowded onto the tiny yacht Granma and set sail for Cuba and revolution.

In the Highlands:

Batista’s men had learned of the returning rebels and ambushed them: Fidel and Raul made it into the wooded central highlands with only a handful of survivors from Mexico; Cienfuegos and Guevara were among them. In the impenetrable highlands the rebels regrouped, attracting new members, collecting weapons and staging guerrilla attacks on military targets. Try as he might, Batista could not root them out. The leaders of the revolution permitted foreign journalists to visit and interviews with them were published around the world.

The Movement Gains Strength:

As the July 26th movement gained power in the mountains, other rebel groups took up the fight as well. In the cities, rebel groups loosely allied with Castro carried out hit-and-run attacks and nearly succeeded in assassinating Batista. Batista decided on a bold move: he sent a large portion of his army into the highlands in the summer of 1958 to try and flush out Castro once and for all. The move backfired: the nimble rebels carried out guerrilla attacks on the soldiers, many of whom switched sides or deserted. By the end of 1958 Castro was ready to deliver the knockout punch.”

– Christopher Minster, The Cuban Revolution

As we can see that despite the Cuban revolutionaries being outnumbered, they still managed to fight off an army that both outnumbered and outgunned them to quite an extent, and managed to build up support for the movement quite effectively, and as such this argument has been dealt with.

And subsequently the last argument I would like to deal with goes something like this;

Marx said that you first need a developed capitalist state before you can have socialism/a socialist revolution and that the places where you had a vanguard party they went straight from feudalism to socialism, and therefore the vanguard party is revisionist

Well before we can actually deal with the argument, we’re first going to have to quote Marx to show wether or not this was the case.

So let us proceed to quote Marx (& Engels) on this particular issue;

“During the Revolution of 1848-9, not only the European princes, but the European bourgeois as well, found their only salvation from the proletariat just beginning to awaken in Russian intervention. The Tsar was proclaimed the chief of European reaction. Today, he is a prisoner of war of the revolution in Gatchina, and Russia forms the vanguard of revolutionary action in Europe.

The Communist Manifesto had, as its object, the proclamation of the inevitable impending dissolution of modern bourgeois property. But in Russia we find, face-to-face with the rapidly flowering capitalist swindle and bourgeois property, just beginning to develop, more than half the land owned in common by the peasants. Now the question is: can the Russian obshchina, though greatly undermined, yet a form of primeval common ownership of land, pass directly to the higher form of Communist common ownership? Or, on the contrary, must it first pass through the same process of dissolution such as constitutes the historical evolution of the West?

The only answer to that possible today is this: If the Russian Revolution becomes the signal for a proletarian revolution in the West, so that both complement each other, the present Russian common ownership of land may serve as the starting point for a communist development.”

– Karl Marx & Friedrich Engels, Manifesto of the Communist Party – Preface To The 1882 Russian Edition

As one can see in the quote here, that’s simply not what Marx (& Engels) said, that we need “capitalism first at all times” before we can have a revolution, and thus this assertion is simply incorrect. But as one can see here, is that a revolution in Russia was supposed to serve as a catalyst for revolutions in the West, but that was exactly what the bolsheviks were after and as such they were expecting revolutions to take place in the West (thus the bolsheviks did exactly what Marx said that should be done), as can be seen in the following quotes by Lenin in his Lecture on the 1905 Revolution;

“Throughout the whole of 1905, the metalworkers strikes show a preponderance of political over economic strikes, though this preponderance was far greater toward the end of the year than at the beginning. Among the textile workers, on the other hand, we observe an overwhelming preponderance of economic strikes at the beginning of 1905, and it is only at the end of the year that we get a preponderance of political strikes. From this it follows quite obviously that the economic struggle, the struggle for immediate and direct improvement of conditions, is alone capable of rousing the most backward strata of the exploited masses, gives them a real education and transforms them—during a revolutionary period—into an army of political fighters within the space of a few months.

Of course, for this to happen, it was necessary for the vanguard of the workers not to regard the class struggle as a struggle in the interests of a thin upper stratum—a conception the reformists all too often try to instil—but for the proletariat to come forward as the real vanguard of the majority of the exploited and draw that majority into the struggle, as was the case in Russia in 1905, and as must be, and certainly will be, the case in the impending proletarian revolution in Europe.[2]”

– Vladimir Lenin, Lecture on the 1905 Revolution

“The following instance will give the audience, particularly the youth, an example of how at that time the movement for national liberation in Russia rose in conjunction with the labour movement.

In December 1905, Polish children in hundreds of schools burned all Russian books, pictures and portraits of the tsar, and attacked and drove out the Russian teachers and their Russian schoolfellows, shouting: “Get out! Go back to Russia!” The Polish secondary school pupils put forward, among others, the following demands: (1) all secondary schools must be under the control of a Soviet of Workers’ Deputies; (2) joint pupils’ and workers’ meetings to be held in school premises; (3) secondary school pupils to be allowed to wear red blouses as a token of adherence to the future proletarian republic.

The higher the tide of the movement rose, the more vigorously and decisively did the reaction arm itself to fight the revolution. The Russian Revolution of 1905 confirmed the truth of what Karl Kautsky wrote in 1902 in his book Social Revolution (he was still, incidentally, a revolutionary Marxist and not, as at present, a champion of social-patriotism and opportunism). This is what he wrote:

“…The impending revolution… will be less like a spontaneous uprising against the government and more like a protracted civil war.”
That is how it was, and undoubtedly that is how it will be in the coming European revolution!”

– Vladimir Lenin, Lecture on the 1905 Revolution

However the revolutions they were relying on never came, and then arises a new question; what should be done once the revolutions you were relying on never take place? The Leninist answer was that you build socialism in the already liberated territories, and given the historical sucess of this line, the burden of proof has already been met for the claim that this choice was the correct one.

One might still attempt to argue that Marx didn’t support the idea that socialism could be built within Russia, however when one reads his Letter to Vera Zasulich we can clearly see him implying the exact opposite. As such allow me to proceed with quoting Marx in the actual letter;

“1) In dealing with the genesis of capitalist production I stated that it is founded on “the complete separation of the producer from the means of production” (p. 315, column 1, French edition of Capital) and that “the basis of this whole development is the expropriation of the agricultural producer. To date this has not been accomplished in a radical fashion anywhere except in England… But all the other countries of Western Europe are undergoing the same process” (1.c., column II).

I thus expressly limited the “historical inevitability” of this process to the countries of Western Europe. And why? Be so kind as to compare Chapter XXXII, where it says:

The “process of elimination transforming individualised and scattered means of production into socially concentrated means of production, of the pigmy property of the many into the huge property of the few, this painful and fearful expropriation of the working people, forms the origin, the genesis of capital… Private property, based on personal labour … will be supplanted by capitalist private property, based on the exploitation of the labour of others, on wage labour” (p. 341, column II).

Thus, in the final analysis, it is a question of the transformation of one form of private property into another form of private property. Since the land in the hands of the Russian peasants has never been their private property, how could this development be applicable?

2) From the historical point of view the only serious argument put forward in favour of the fatal dissolution of the Russian peasants’ commune is this: By going back a long way communal property of a more or less archaic type may be found throughout Western Europe; everywhere it has disappeared with increasing social progress. Why should it be able to escape the same fate in Russia alone? I reply: because in Russia, thanks to a unique combination of circumstances, the rural commune, still established on a nationwide scale, may gradually detach itself from its primitive features and develop directly as an element of collective production on a nationwide scale. It is precisely thanks to its contemporaneity with capitalist production that it may appropriate the latter’s positive acquisitions without experiencing all its frightful misfortunes. Russia does not live in isolation from the modern world; neither is it the prey of a foreign invader like the East Indies.

If the Russian admirers of the capitalist system denied the theoretical possibility of such a development, I would ask them this question: In order to utilise machines, steam engines, railways, etc., was Russia forced, like the West, to pass through a long incubation period in the engineering industry? Let them explain to me, too, how they managed to introduce in their own country, in the twinkling of an eye, the entire mechanism of exchange (banks, credit institutions, etc.), which it took the West centuries to devise?”

– Karl Marx, Letter to Vera Zasulich

And thus as we can see once again, that the argument against the vanguard party/Marxism-Leninism, simply doesn’t hold.

As such, I’d like to conclude this article by once again proclaiming that the arguments against the vanguard party have been refuted, and that the original arguments in favour of the vanguard party still stand, and thus the validity/credibility of revolutionary Marxism-Leninism has once again been reaffirmed.


In defence Of The Vanguard Party

In Defence Of The Vanguard Party (video)

Vladimir Lenin, Better Fewer, But Better

Josef Stalin, The Right Deviation In The C.P.S.U.

Josef Stalin, Fifteenth Congress Of The C.P.S.U.

Mao Zedong, Combat Bureaucracy, Commandism And Violations Of The Law And Of Discipline

Mao Zedong, On The Struggle Against The “Three Evils” And The “Five Evils”

Enver Hoxha, Selected Works Volume 3

Enver Hoxha, Selected Works Volume 4

Karl Marx & Friedrich Engels, Manifesto of the Communist Party

G.A Cohen, Karl Marx’ Theory Of History: A Defence

Friedrich Engels, Socialism: Utopian and Scientific

Christopher Minster, The Cuban Revolution

Karl Marx & Friedrich Engels, Manifesto of the Communist Party (including prefaces to multiple editions)

Vladimir Lenin, Lecture on the 1905 Revolution

Karl Marx, Letter to Vera Zasulich