Communist leaders have socialism
and a new USSR in their sights
The Moldovan Communist Party (MCP) which recently won the elections there have held a Party Congress attended by over 400 delegates and about 800 guests. The forum re-elected Moldovan President Vladimir Voronin as MCP Chairman, and parliamentary MCP faction leader, Victor Stepaniuk as Secretary of the MCP Political Executive Committee. The Congress was attended by Communist Party delegations from the Russian Federation, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Belarus, Cuba, Slovakia, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus, Yugoslavia, Vietnam, China, Romania, Spain, North Korea, and Turkey, as well as from Transnistria. Party leader Vladimir Voronin, in a 90-minute report spoke of "the deadlock of capitalism" and the "revival of socialism". "The capitalist way of development is a way to a deadlock", he stated, and referred to the intensifying standoff between a dozen and a half developed nations and dozens of poor countries. "These contradictions have become particularly sharp after the demise of the former Soviet Union", he said. The only reasonable alternative to such a stand-off is the socialist way of development, "whose temporary defeat only proves this truth". Vladimir Voronin said the heritage left to the Communist Party by "democratic reformers" was a three-fold fall in GDP, a complete de- industrialisation of the national economy, a US$1.5 billion external debt, three-quarters of the population living below subsistence level, and hundreds of thousand Moldovans earning their living abroad. "Over the last 10 years, [pro-Romania] unionist forces — which have never regarded Moldova as a sovereign state but only as a province of its neighbouring country — have been acting on "the worse the better" principle. "History has ruled that Moldova become the first of all European states where communists are back in power. The MCP's historic mission is to prove to the world the validity of the communist idea and that the communist movement has the most favorable historic perspectives." Among the MCP's drawbacks Voronin mentioned poor work with the youth and insufficient party building. The MCP has 840 basic party organisations functioning across the country, whereas the objective was to have organisations in each of Moldova's 1,500 cities, towns and villages. Voronin said the Party's main objectives are rehabilitation of the economy, improving the population's life, social consolidation, reforming country management, solution of the Transnistrian conflict and a pragmatic foreign policy. He confirmed that the communists recognise the equality of all property forms. First priority will be to lower income tax and raise pensions and salaries proportionate to the minimum consumer price index. At present the average wage is Moldova constitutes only 30 percent of subsistence level. Social priorities include the need to make secondary and higher education as well as health care free of charge. "It is essential to return people's trust in power. We must be wise managers and must not be thieves. This must apply to everyone — from the President to the last village mayor". These words caused delegates' prolonged, loud applause. The communists are not ruling out that at the first stage of work in all state power structures they will have "to restore order through the dictatorship of law". He named Russia as Moldova's chief strategic partner, but underlined that "currently, the experience of the ruling communist parties in China, North Korea, Cuba and Vietnam is particularly interesting and useful to us". Voronin stated the communists must struggle for the minds of the youth and workers and increase the MCP's propaganda work. Heretofore, the MCP's main electorate has been the older generation and Russian-speaking citizens who are attracted by the Party's pro-Russia orientation. Gennadi Zuganov, Russian Communist Party leader, was welcomed by the Congress with a standing, stormy ovation and wished his Moldovan comrades to join the efforts of the Parliament, President and Government "into one strong fist for re-uniting the ruined Fatherland". Zuganov said the globalisation process seeks to realise the interests of only one nation — the United States. "All financial, informational and energy flows are in the hands of America. Many countries are trying to live by IMF prescriptions, but fail to do so because strong countries suck all the juices out of the economies of the weak countries", said Zuganov. A Cuban Communist Party representative stated that the United States had failed to break down the Cuban people's adherence to communist ideals. "Our people do not doubt the correctness of the path we chose on January 1, 1959. History has placed the Cuban communists in the first ranks of struggle against world imperialism which the Cubans must win", he emphasised. It is expected that Moldova will seek to join the present Russia-Belarus Union as a step-by-step process of reforming the USSR. "The membership in this Union will mean a return of our countries to the socialist way of development", said the Transnistrian Communist Party leader. A gala concert of revolutionary songs was staged for Congress delegates and guests. The forum was closed to the sounds of "The International". The theatre's stage was decorated with a big portrait of Lenin and the red Soviet flag.