CPUSA contribution to the IMCWP Meeting in Izmir, Turkey October 2023
Represented by Marc Brodine, member of the CPUSA National Committee and National Board
Comrades, I bring warm fraternal greetings from the Communist Party USA to your parties and to the peoples of the world fighting for a better future for all.
Our party began, in the mid-1980s, to warn of the increasing danger of fascism, a danger which intensified with the minority “election” of Donald Trump in 2016. While the 2020 defeat of Trump was a critical step, it did not represent adecisive defeat of the fascist forces. The 2024 election will be a major battle, complete with more efforts by the extreme right to subvert democracy, and more dangerous attempts to instigate violence in our political system. They have already made plans, announced publicly, to institute a much more aggressive authoritarianism, to eliminate the checks-and-balances on their unlimited use of power including military power, and centralizing virtually all power in the imperial presidency.
We seek to build a massive, all-people’s front for democracy, and seek to defeat all efforts to undermine democracy and institute fascism. In the process, we fight against white nationalism and white supremacy, ideologies and movements which are anti-democratic, anti-human, and provide the fodder for the fascist movement. The next waystation in the electoral battles over the nature of our country will take place this fall, when the many local and state elections will set the stage for 2024. The broad anti-fascist people’s front is on the move already, and all signs point to a massive struggle next year.
In our country, we see many contradictions. While the battle to protect and extend our limited bourgeois democracy exposes key splits in the U.S. ruling class, and while there are important differences among ruling circles about how aggressively to use U.S. military might, the two major parties remain united on many aspects of imperialist foreign policy. Some are taking advantage of this unity to attempt to instigate a new Cold War, aimed against China, Nicaragua, Cuba and Venezuela.
We oppose U.S. military policies around the world—we call for an end to the embargo against Cuba, for an end to the war against Ukraine, for an end to the U.S. supplying arms and advanced weaponry to allies and client regimes in the Middle East, Central America, Latin America, and Asia. After the efforts of the Trump administration to roll back the tentative and modest efforts taken by Obamato easeconflicts with Cuba, the Biden administration has thus far not reinstated even those minor policy improvements.
We call for the closing of U.S. military bases around the world.These bases, over 800 of them, are costly, do not provide security for the people of our country, and are used to threaten and attack others. Our program calls for transferring at least half of the massive U.S. military budget to social and human needs.
Another contradiction is that U.S. electoral politics do not reflect the majority wishes of our people. Large majorities favor peace, favor increases in the minimum wage, approve of unions, support action on climate change, and demand women’s right to full health care.But these issues do not get action in our legislative bodies.Republican elected officials manage to block the will of the majority, sometimes even the will of the majority of members of Congress.
As we know, contradictions drive struggle, change, and progress. Working class and progressive struggles are gaining in strength and militancy—for example, the current auto worker’s strike, for example the strikes by the Writer’s Guild and Screen Actors Guild, for example the contract won from the United Parcel Service because of the threat of a strike.Union organizing and strikes have been on the upswing for several years, including winning union representation at many Starbucks outlets, McDonalds, at the Medieval Times restaurant chain, and even at Amazon warehouses, in spite of anti-union campaigns by those companies.These are all signs of the growth of class struggle trade unionism.Our class is in a profound class struggle, integrally linked with the broad struggle to protect and extend our democracy.
In our view, our country is moving into a period of strikes and union organizing, a period of upswing for all progressive movements.We are participating in mass demonstrations on civil rights, women’s rights, and climate change, such as the recent 75,000-strong End Fossil Fuels demonstration in New York City in September.
The extreme right in the U.S. —by their attacks on progressive movements and policies—is teaching millions of radical, militant workers who our allies are. Their fascist plan, if they win the presidential election in 2024, will be disastrous for workers, for unions, for women, for people of color, for the environment, for LGBTQ people, and for democracy. All those forces need to unite, in order to protect democratic space for struggle and in order to win the demands of each movement.
While we recognize the limited nature of our capitalist democracy, we require democracy to effectively fight for workers’ rights, for full civil, legal, and health care rights and access for all, for addressing climate change. We need to be able to not just vote, we need democratic space to be able to demonstrate, to petition, to organize, to engage in boycotts and information campaigns, to be able to speak for ourselves and our class.
Our Partyplays an important role in fighting for unity and against racism and bigotry, opposing U.S. imperialism, and promoting the broadest coalition efforts. We are growing rapidly because of the crises facing our class, people, and country. We seek to frame the fight against Trump and his allies as a fight for democracy. We opposeincreasing efforts to drum up anti-communism and anti-socialism. We fight for the leadership of working class forces in all the movements we participate in. We are taking steps to help revitalize the peace movement in the United States. We are also preparing for our National Convention next June in Chicago.
We face a brutal, aggressive, and militaristic ruling class, which is eager to place the blame and costs of all crises and difficulties on the working class and poor people. The ruling class, especially its most militaristic, most chauvinistic, and most anti-democratic section, seeks to eliminate civil rights including the right of women to control their own bodies, seeks to continue to increase the biggest military budget in the history of the world (starving our people of much needed social and health services), and seeks to drum up fascism, racism, sexism, and anti-communism. Extreme right-wing forces aremaking many attempts to eliminate voting rights and makeit harder to vote, especially for African American, Latino, and poor people, as well as for students and other youth. They see these efforts as the only way to continue their stranglehold on way toomanyof our formal political systems, from the presidential level to the smallest local offices.
Our party, along with millions of others, stands in opposition to all these efforts. We are champions of the unity necessary to defeat the fascists and to make progress for our class and people.
Our parties, all part of the international Communist and workers movement, when united and acting in concert with each other, can be a powerful force for progress and for the survival of humanity. The peoples of the world, including the peoples of the U.S., need socialism—for democracy, for peace, against racism and bigotry of all kinds, against fascism, for worldwide action on climate change, for a future for the human race.