Contribution of Party of Labour of Austria [En]
We would like to thank the Communist Party of Vietnam for successfully hosting this year’s meeting. We also wish to thank the working group and all the parties of the IMCWP for accepting our party as member and giving us the opportunity to participate in this meeting for the first time. We are very grateful and pleased to contribute to this effort to organise and coordinate the communist and workers’ movement on a global scale.
We are a young party. The Party of Labour of Austria was founded on 12 October 2013, after the Communist Initiative was dissolved as an organisation in order to become a party. But our history goes a long way back. We see ourselves in the tradition of the international communist movement of the 20th century and of the Communist Party of Austria before it was liquidated as a revolutionary communist and workers’ party to become a part of the opportunist “European Left”.
In our effort to build a strong new revolutionary party in Austria we are confronted with many challenges. The objective situation and the balance of power are very negative for a rapid development of a class-oriented workers’ movement and a strengthening of the lines of a revolutionary communist party. Social democracy still dominates the unions, and its failures mostly work to the advantage of the most reactionary, nationalist and racist camp of the bourgeois class. The people are divided along false fronts and dilemmas. The bourgeoisie is using the contradictions among the working class to disorientate and divert them from their real problems and common interests.
But we have managed to create the conditions for a reversal of the situation in the future. We have taken the first steps in building party structures all over the country. We are represented in the union movement and our work in important sectors of production and services is progressing. We participate in the most important protests of the people and express our solidarity with the migrants and refugees in our country in various ways.
Of course, we have a long way to go before becoming an important political factor in the country and thus posing a threat for the bourgeois establishment. We are not represented in the national parliament and our efforts at local elections have so far failed due to objective conditions and subjective weaknesses alike. But we are not giving up our struggle or allowing ourselves to be discouraged by this situation. We are convinced of the historical necessity of a strong revolutionary workers’ party in Austria and its role in the transition from capitalism to socialism and communism.
25 years after the completion of the counter-revolution in the Soviet Union and the socialist states in Eastern Europe, we are still experiencing the consequences of this major setback for the working class movement on a global, regional and national scale. The domination of capitalism and imperialism is being felt by billions of people in the world. Economic crisis and anti-worker policies are the reality in all capitalist countries regardless of which bourgeois party currently governs. Imperialist interventions are destroying the living conditions of whole nations driving them to mass migration. The danger of a general war is also coming closer, as the antagonism between imperialist countries, monopolist groups and bourgeois factions is escalating.
In this situation we as communists have the obligation to analyse the current situation, the problems of the peoples and the history of the working class and communist movement and to draw conclusions that help overcome this negative balance of power. We have to organise the struggle of the working class, direct it against capitalism, imperialism and the bourgeois state and formulate concrete proposals to relieve the working masses, promote their initiative and ensure their well-being.
Each party fights on different fronts, under different circumstances and using different means and forms of struggle according to its circumstances. Each party analyses the objective factors in its country and seeks to formulate its political line according to the principles of Marxism-Leninism and the needs of the situation.
But our struggle is also common. We share the common goal of socialism-communism. We are all confronted with the global development of monopoly capitalism and its imperialist aggression. In the face of this barbarity, internationalist solidarity among the workers of all countries and joint action of the communist parties on a revolutionary line are necessary conditions for a successful outcome of our struggle. For this reason it is important to work closely together, to exchange our experience and also discuss our often different strategic and tactical approaches.
It is important to strengthen our lines and establish deeper roots in the working class and the popular strata of society. We have to organise a broad militant front against the policies of monopolies and the bourgeoisie in every country. But we also have to strengthen our political unity and our ideological awareness. As, among other things, the experience from our country shows, the destructive effects of the development of deviations and the often uncontrolled action of opportunist elements inside our parties – especially in the second half of the 20th century – has proven that we are obliged to guard our political-ideological line, to be a vanguard against the influence of bourgeois and petty bourgeois ideology on the working class. Our tactics must thus not contradict our strategy and strategic goal of socialism and communism.
The international communist movement today lacks a unified organisational centre. Of course, this will not be overcome easily or soon. But the need for it is undoubtedly present. For this reason it is important to consistently discuss and investigate important issues such as the stance of the communist and workers’ parties in the imperialist war, the experience from the construction of socialism in the 20th century and our stance towards opportunism and bourgeois parties. It is only through such a process that true unity and effective internationalist action will become reality.
In conclusion, we want to state our conviction that the 21st century will be characterised by new forms of fierce class struggle and that it will be our task to play a leading role in this struggle that will determine its outcome.
Long live the Communist Party!
Long live Marxism-Leninism!
Long live Proletarian Internationalism!
Central Committee of the Party of Labour of Austria