Welcome, readers, to the final instalment of the Australian Marxist Review for 2016. In the months leading up to the publication of issue #63, two international conferences were held that are of great relevance and interest to Communists around the world. They were the 7th World Socialism Forum (WSF) and the 18th International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties (IMCWP). This issue is dedicated to making a selection of the speeches and proceedings of those meetings available to our readers.
The issue opens with Bob Briton and Michael Hooper’s written contribution to the WSF entitled “Reliable friends of China”. Their article provides an analysis of the positions towards China held by domestic political forces in Australia and argues that the best way for China and other socialist countries to lessen the impact of the current imperialist onslaught is to support the strengthening of Communist parties in the capitalist world.
Capitalism poses an existential threat to humanity, including as a result of its rapacious destruction of our environment. The socialist countries, on the other hand, hold the promise of a new kind of relationship with the environment that will ensure humanity’s future. Wadi’h Halabi, in his article “Away with all pests: Ecological agriculture as policy will strengthen Marxism and promote ecological civilisation”, explains how ecological agriculture is the way forward for Socialist societies and how two such societies, China and Cuba are already cooperating to protect the environment and provide food security to their respective peoples.
China’s reform process is controversial to say the least. Questions of to what degree particular reforms may be pursued before they lead to outright capitalist restoration are debateable. Feng Daojie takes up this question in “Several ‘degrees’ to be grasped in the deepening of reform”, providing a Chinese perspective into the qualitative changes to seek or avoid as the Chinese Government and Party seek their own mixed economic road to Socialism.
The South African Communist Party (SACP) has travelled a long and difficult road to reach the position it holds today. Gregory Houston in “The South African Communist Party in the context of the collapse of socialism in the Soviet Union” presents the historical experience of the SACP, their traditional relationship with the socialist world and how they adapted to face the difficult situation following the collapse of the Soviet Union and the peoples’ democracies. As a result of their own innovative practices, the SACP was one of the only parties in the world that managed to grow through that difficult period of the collapse.
With reference to Mao Ze Dong, Michael Hooper in his speech, “The task of our time”, made clear that the imperialists will never give up on their dream of crushing Socialist China. This final contribution to the 7th World Socialism Forum featured in Issue #63 presents overwhelming evidence as to the evil intent of US imperialism and lays out a potential course that the CPC could follow in defence of their revolution: international cooperation in strengthening communist parties in the imperialist world to pressure their own governments to weaken anti-Chinese policy and action.
Approximately one week after the conclusion of the 7th World Socialism Forum in Beijing, the 18th International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties was held in Hanoi. In this issue, we present two contributions made respectively by the Portuguese Communist Party and the Tudeh Party of Iran. Both contributions offer the insights and analysis of these parties regarding the specific national conditions of their domestic struggle, the international situation where imperialism is on the offensive and the need for real solidarity and cooperation between Communist Parties.
The Editorial Board of the Australian Marxist Review wishes all readers a happy holiday season and hopes that comrades will be well rested for another year of struggle in 2017!