«The Iranian Working Class Came Out on the Battlefield, Overthrew the Shah and Shook the Capitalist World» (Enver Hoxha)
Collection of Excerpts of his book:
SUNDAY - JANUARY 14, 1979
GLORY TO THE IRANIAN PEOPLE!
The people of Persia (In 1935 Riza Shah Pahlavi changed the name of Persia to Iran) have ancient progressive traditions, great culture and an extensive idealist philosophy. Writers, poets, philosophers and scientists who have astonished the world have emerged from their ranks. Even today their works carry authority in the great world treasury of culture.
The history of the Persian people and their outstanding representatives is one of the most glorious parts of world history. Many of these great men, philosophers and poets, such as Sa'adi, Ferdousi, Omar Khayyam, etc., etc., were from the common people and their writings had their source in the people, notwithstanding that they were supported by the Shahs of various empires. The tradition of this knowledge, of this science, has been handed down from generation to generation.
In modern times Iran became the prey of imperialism, especially British imperialism, which was the first to discover the oil in that country and secured from the Shahs and princes of Persia great concessions for the «Anglo-Persian Oil Company» almost for nothing. Later, when it realized the enormous extent of this oil wealth, the British Admiralty took control of it, because without it Britain could not have had a fleet which would dominate the seas and could not have developed an advanced industry in its metropolis.
Therefore, the «Anglo-Persian Oil Company » greatly extended the territories in which it exploited oil around Abadan on the Persian Gulf and beyond, covering the country with wells, from which it drew the «black gold», and it built big refineries there. From Abadan the oil was transported by specially built tanker ships to the metropolises and elsewhere, where it was sold for yellow gold. All this served the strategy of imperialism in its aims to dominate the world.
Later everything in regard to the extraction, processing and the transport of oil was perfected in order to ensure the greatest possible profits for the colonizers and increase to the maximum the poverty of the Iranian people.
In Iran the ample crumbs which fell from the great table of the British Empire were shared amongst the various Shahs who gave a little also to other princes in different regions of Persia which had plenty of oil-fields. The representatives of the dynasty of Hajars, and after them the Pahlavis, became the wealthiest families of Persia and, indeed, of the world, because Persia took second place in the world for the extraction of oil.
There, as we know, civil disturbances and conflicts have occurred which have had their source in the resistance of the people both to the Shah and the princesses who led a fabulous life, and to British imperialism, which mercilessly exploited the people who had no food to eat, no shoes on their feet, no shirts to their backs, in the cities, let alone in the villages.
Of these many conflicts let us speak only about that between the «Tudeh» Party, combined with the democratic land-owning bourgeoisie of Mossadeq, on the one hand, and the British Empire, represented by the great British petroleum concession, on the other hand. As a result of this conflict and uprising, Mossadeq seized state power at the beginning of 1951. The government he created nationalized the oil, so that the British Empire and other empires which got oil from Persia were in danger of being left with nothing, because the overwhelming bulk of the oil income would go to the Iranian people, in other words, the situation would change again to the disadvantage of Shah Pahlavi. The victory of the uprising of the forces that Mossadeq represented and the «Tudeh» Party, which had, you might say, communist inspiration, forced the Shah to make a hasty departure by aircraft for Rome. But then the CIA intervened and, in collaboration with the Shah's generals, deceived the scum of Tehran, got it out in the streets allegedly to defend Mossadeq, although in fact it surrounded the palace in which the members of the government were located, arrested them together with Mossadeq, ruthlessly crushed the «Tudeh» Party, executed or imprisoned its members and drowned in blood this democratic uprising of the people. The centre of the revolt, which did not have a great development all over Iran, was Tehran.
Through the intervention of the Americans, of course, the lion's share of the oil was awarded to the United States of America which played the decisive role in suppressing the popular uprising. Of the remainder, a part was left to Britain and a third portion, which was still a huge amount because the oil wealth was so great, was given to the Shah Mohammed Riza Pahlavi.
In this way he became a powerful monarch, a great megalomaniac, an emperor who traced his origin back to the Assyrians of remote antiquity.
Indeed, he celebrated the 2500th anniversary of the founding of the first Persian state in the desert where he erected silk tents and invited heads of governments from all over the world, from Tito to the Chinese, who went and took part in the feast, praising to the skies the fame of the Shah of Iran, that barbarous mediaeval feudal ruler who sucked the blood of the Iranian people who were left to languish in utter poverty and ignorance.
The Shah became the lackey of the United States of America. The Americans were the overlords who ruled, appropriated the bulk of the oil and made the law in Iran. The Shah invested the income he received outside the country on behalf of himself and his family. He invested in the big steel companies in Germany, the United States and elsewhere, bought whole streets of residential flats and hotels in the main countries of the world and deposited gold and precious stones in the banks of the United States of America and Europe to have as his personal wealth in bad times. Within the country he had created SAVAK, a merciless weapon that maimed and killed anyone who dared oppose or even utter one word against the blood-thirsty Shah.
This time not only the oil, but the whole country as a territory was sold to the Americans politically and militarily. To protect himself from the people, the Shah had bought from the United States great quantities of the most modern weapons which that country has sold abroad, had formed an army of hundreds of thousands equipped with all kinds of weapons, including machine-guns, tanks, aircraft and the most modern missiles and had built many air-strips. All these things were done to defend the property of the Americans in Iran and the wealth of the Shah, as well as to keep the people in misery.
Of course, such a state of affairs could not go on for ever, despite the material, military and political assistance for the Shah that came from all parts of the world. Amongst others, the new Chinese Empire threw rose petals at the Shah. Hua Guofeng in person went to Iran (on 29 August 1978) and spoke with the greatest warmth about a «great and sound» friendship with the Shah of Persia and wished a long life to this powerful supplier of China's great friends: the United States of America and world capitalism.
Hua Guofeng parted with the Shah of Iran as his greatest friend, but it must be said that these links of China's with the Pahlavi empire had been established prior to the advent to power of Hua Guofeng and Deng Xiaoping. Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai had become close friends with the Shah of Iran. Main Chinese leaders like Li Xianian and others visited that country whenever they liked. Even the Shah's sister, one of the wealthiest persons in Iran, adviser to her brother in his plans for the enslavement and oppression of the peoples and a notorious intriguer, was given a magnificent reception in Beijing.
This was Princess Ashraf who was welcomed with great honours by Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai.
Although the forces of reaction, of imperialism, revisionism and world capitalism acted together, they were unable to suppress the heroic people of Iran. The sentiment for freedom and independence was seething among them like a great volcano, the rancour was increasing, the hatred and anger among the people were mounting higher and higher until at last they erupted.
For three months the whole people of Iran, the Iranian proletariat, all the workers of the oil industry, have been in open revolt. Hundreds of thousands of people filled the streets of all the cities of Iran day and night, shouting: Death to the Shah! Down with the Shah! Out with the Shah! Out with American imperialism! The sound of machine-guns firing on the Shah's orders echoed through the streets where hundreds of people were killed, but nevertheless hundreds of thousands of others came out the following day carrying the dead on their shoulders, with their clenched fists raised, protesting ceaselessly day and night. Neither the army, the tanks, nor anything else intimidated this heroic people.
Such a state of revolt had built up in the ranks of the Iranian people that no American, Chinese, Soviet or British tank could stop its outburst and the attack on the barbarous exploiting and enslaving mediaeval empire of the Shah Mohammed Riza Pahlavi, a lackey of imperialism and world capitalism.
This shows that the objective conditions in Iran had matured. Of course, an uprising of the people with such great force was guided by a subjective factor. What was this subjective factor?
Some try to say that it was the sense of Islam, or Ayatollah Khomeini who lives in Paris whence he issues instructions to the people in revolt. The fact is and it must be acknowledged that this person and his Shia sect are playing a role at present as a subjective factor in the revolt of the Iranian people, but he and his sect are by no means the only decisive force. The Iranian progressive, indeed non-religious bourgeoisie as well as communists and genuine patriots are also at the head of this revolution with bourgeoisdemocratic features, which we can call an antiimperialist revolution the slogan of which is «Death to the Shah!». For months on end, day and night, fearlessly and with exemplary courage, the insurgents are smashing through the barriers of the enemy like a rouleau compresseur* [* Steam roller (French in the original)] completely unafraid of the bullets of the Shah's army, unafraid of death. The throne of the Pahlavis is tottering and is expected to topple and fall any day now. The Shah of Iran will be driven out, if not today, certainly in the near future. He has declared that he is going away for a while allegedly for a rest, but he will go never to return. The Shah pretends to be leaving at his own pleasure, but pleasure has nothing to do with it. It is the force, the resistance, the uprising of the people which compel him to choose — either stay and be captured alive or killed by the people, or get on an aircraft and go to the United States of America. Indeed, he has sent all the members of his family there, while he himself is hanging on a little longer, until he can create some kind of modus vivendi, a government which will allegedly be accepted and a regency, that is, it must be considered that the Shah has not abdicated and that later his son will have pretensions to the throne; to this end he has appointed a person who has been disowned by his own party, the party of Ayatollah Khomeini.
The main thing is that the great revolt of the heroic Iranian people against world imperialism, against the Shah, against innumerable modern weapons, against that monster which seemed invincible, has triumphed. Although unarmed, the people with the great force of their will, which was displayed everyday in confrontation with the armed forces of the Shah, demonstrated that they are invincible, a thing which has shaken the United States and compelled tens of thousands of foreign specialists to leave Iran. The aircraft carriers of the United States of America have been ordered into Iranian waters, but without hope. So, this time the CIA lost out in Iran, was unable to triumph as it did in the Mossadeq uprising, because this time the uprising has assumed colossal proportions. The oil of Iran is no longer flowing into the British, American, Chinese and other tankers.
This shows what a colossal force the people comprise. The Iranian people overthrew the empire and imposed defeat on the great military and political might of American and world imperialism.
This is a very important fact which serves as a great example for the other peoples of the world who must draw conclusions from the uprising of this heroic people...
Hence, as I pointed out, all that has occurred in Iran exemplifies the strength of the people and shows that the objective and subjective factors for the revolution have been created. It must be understood, however, that in these events the subjective factor is not simply the Marxist-Leninist Communist Party of Iran alone, because there are other progressive, democratic, bourgeois, anti-feudal and anti-imperialist forces which are operating there. The Marxist-Leninist Communist Party of Iran must draw lessons from this and go deep amongst the people, must be in the forefront of the situation, create links with the people, with the proletariat, and show them what great victories they have scored, and be able to build alliances with those elements, with those democratic strata, which took part actively in the uprising, and advance together with them from
stage to stage.
The peoples, the Marxist-Leninist parties and progressive elements must draw correct conclusions from the uprising in Iran. American imperialism and especially Soviet imperialism, which are vying with each other for spheres of influence, usually accuse each other of having organized uprisings and revolts in those countries where the peoples are fighting for their national and social liberation. They do this in order to denigrate these uprisings and revolts, to belittle their true value and to sabotage them more easily. They are employing this tactic in regard to the great revolt of the Iranian people against the Shah and imperialism. The charge is not true. However, they do have a finger in this revolt, but in another direction, and concretely:
US imperialism wants to protect the privileges it has had in Iran and is doing everything in its power to hang on to them. Soviet imperialism is trying to seize the opportunity to secure privileges for itself. For this purpose Carter has spoken two or three times in support of the Shah of Iran and the Soviet Union has not lagged behind, declaring that it would not allow the intervention of other states in Iran.
* * *
The fact is that American imperialism has suffered a political, economic and military defeat in Iran, its alliance with the Shah has received a staggering blow. But has American imperialism washed its hands of Iran? It is wrong to think or say that it has completely washed its hands of Iran. No, it will employ new tactics, tactics in allegedly democratic forms and ways, will try to enter into agreements, to come to terms, of course less favourable than those of the time of the Shah, with that bourgeois-democratic state which will be established in Iran after the departure of the Shah.
Soviet imperialism also has its own elements in Iran through whom it operates for its own interests in opposition to those of American imperialism.
Soviet imperialism has not fought much against the Shah; on the contrary, the Soviet Union has handled him with kid-gloves.
However, we can say that in Iran the Soviet Union has influence among the Kurds and the people of Azerbaijan, as well as in the «Tudeh» Party, which it will continue to use for its own ends. It will exert its influence, also, after the creation of another bourgeois-democratic government, such as Ayatollah Khomeini predicted will be established in the interview which he gave in Paris.
It has been declared that after the fall or removal of the Shah and with the proclamation of the republic, as Ayatollah Khomeini has promised, certain reforms for the people will be carried out: SAVAK, the Shah's terrible secret police which oppressed the people, will be liquidated, or the big Iranian army will be liquidated, some people will be put on trial, a thing about which we have no doubt, and the wealth of some individuals who have committed the most scandalous abuses will be confiscated.
From the current news agency reports we see that before his departure the Shah created a regency council, which includes the prime minister, the chief of the general staff and others.
This prime minister, Shapour Bakhtiar, is the Shah's man, hence the man of the Americans.
Will he be able to seize power or carry out a coup d'état? This we shall see. But at the moment he is not accepted either by the masses of the people or by Ayatollah Khomeini in Paris, who has declared that he is going to form a government of his own which will take a neutral stand, neither with the Soviet Union nor with the United States of America.
As far as can be seen, the two imperialist superpowers are trying to make deals to the detriment of the Iranian people, to the detriment of the blood that has been shed, although apparently neither the Americans nor the Soviets have been able to get round Ayatollah Khomeini as yet. If the Americans manage to come to terms with Khomeini and his followers, then there will certainly be a bloodbath in Iran and the people's uprising will be suppressed. As to what the Soviets will do, this we shall see. Perhaps, they will try to get around Ayatollah Khomeini, making him form a government which will have regard for the interests both of the Soviet Union and of the United States of America. This will be a middle course and we shall see whether it will be achieved. Nevertheless, everything will continue to be at the expense of the people because the democratic regime which will be established after the departure of the Shah will be like all the other regimes of the oil basin, of the Middle East zone.
Many intrigues will be hatched up so as to prevent this revolution from carrying out deepgoing reforms. In this very important strategic country it will still take a long time for the people to become even more conscious of their great strength and this consciousness must be created by a genuine Marxist-Leninist party. At present this party is almost non-existent or is a very small force, the influence of which is still felt little if at all. Soviet influence might make itself felt through the government which will be established in this country, but this will certainly be felt in the interests of the imperialist Soviet Union and allegedly in the forms of a democracy for the people. The Soviet Union wants to get a foothold in the Persian Gulf as it is trying to do in Iraq.
Therefore, in this zone of such importance to the whole world, from both the economic and the strategic aspects, many tactics and strategies will be employed and we must watch them, because they have great importance for the future of the world in the sense that this region might be the starting-point of a world war, but at the same time might also be the starting-point of a chain of revolutions, bourgeois-democratic revolutions, which could develop into genuine revolutions...
The Middle East is ablaze. At the moment Iran is in the vanguard, while the other countries of this zone are in confusion, involved in innumerable intrigues. The peoples in these countries are down-trodden, under the yoke of local capitalists linked with various other foreign capitalists.
One thing links these countries with one another: the war allegedly against Israel, while their other links are obviously with one or the other of the imperialist powers which are operating there much more freely than they are operating in Iran at present.
There at present the people are on the move and have become a great force. But how and where, in what direction this great force will be channelled and what will emerge concretely from this great popular movement, we shall see later. It is a positive fact that the people in Iran are rising for the second time against the monarchy, against feudalism, in an anti-imperialist struggle and for a progressive, bourgeois popular democracy.
JANUARY 16, 1979
THE SHAH HAS BEEN KICKED OUT OF IRAN.
A GREAT HISTORIC VICTORY OVER THE MONARCHY
News agencies report that the Shah Mohammed Riza Pahlavi has been kicked out of Iran. The throne of the feudal monarch, an agent of American imperialism, has been overthrown by the great popular uprising of the Iranian people and the proletariat of the oil industry. This is a great historic victory.
On this occasion I gave Comrade Ramiz Alia the theses for an article [«A Great Historic Victory of the Iranian People», «Zëri i popullit», January 19, 1979] to be written for the newspaper «Zëri i popullit» in which the i's should be dotted to show the strength of the people, the strength of the proletariat in the struggle against the monarchy, feudalism and imperialism and for the triumph of democracy, a triumph which must be carried through to the end. It should be stressed that the people must persist in this struggle in order to achieve even greater victories through profound reforms. Of course this will take time, but the struggle must be continued.
Irrespective of which individual figures led the popular uprising, it must be said that they are progressive elements of the bourgeoisie who have thrown themselves into the struggle against the feudal monarchy internally and against American imperialism, against capitalism which exploits the Iranian people, and that this uprising is based on the people and the proletariat. In these events the subjective factor is not the Marxist-Leninist party which, of course, has its own part, although still weak.
The people and the proletariat must continue the struggle for profound and far-reaching democratic reforms and for greater vigilance against the various imperialists who will not give up their diabolical plans in regard to Iran and will try to manoeuvre with every kind of intrigue, utilizing various individuals in order to keep that country in perpetual bondage, in new forms, in order to exploit it and its wealth.
Therefore, the Iranian proletariat and people must be vigilant both against American, British and French imperialism and against Soviet socialimperialism, because the «Tudeh» Party is sure to be revived there and will support the Soviet Union in the infiltration of its influence into Iran. The United States also will turn over the page and will try to find a Bakhtiar or someone like him in Iran who should come to power with a «democratic» government.
WEDNESDAY - JANUARY 24, 1979
CHINA IS SILENT ABOUT THE EVENTS IN IRAN
In Iran the uprising continues. The broad masses of the people are coming out in even bigger demonstrations in the streets of Tehran and other cities. Likewise, the strike continues in the oil-fields.
The Shah has left the country, or rather has been swept out. He went to Aswan in Egypt where he had contacts and long talks lasting for five days with Sadat. Sadat did not consider his acceptance of the Shah's visit as interference in the affairs of Iran because, allegedly, he did not receive the Shah to show that he supported him, but as a personal friend who had taken the side of Egypt in the war against Israel. All this is a concoction.
Just «by chance» at the time when the Shah was in Egypt, Ford, the ex-president of the United States of America, arrived there. Allegedly, he, too, had not come to see the Shah, but since «he happened to be there», Ford set off for Aswan and there in the big residential hotel where Sadat and the Shah were staying, the three of them spent two to three days talking tête-à-tête. Ford left. It was announced that after staying five days in Egypt, the Shah would go on to the Sherifian monarchy of Morocco as a friend of King Hassan II and from there to the United States, allegedly to take a brief holiday.
The Shah's travels to Egypt, the African regions and, perhaps, a visit to the King of Jordan later, contain some threat, although not very large, of intervention or disturbances inside Iran.
The situation in Iran is this: the Bakhtiar government continues to exist and calls itself the constitutional government. The United States of America has defended the Shah as much as it could: Carter himself spoke in his support over the radio more than once, but when it was seen that everything was lost in regard to the person of the Shah, the United States considered what it must do to save the future, the dynasty, to have it in its service. Therefore, the United States of America, through its president, is giving powerful support to prime minister Bakhtiar.
The manoeuvre of the Americans and the Shah's supporters was that on the departure of the Shah, a regency should be created in Iran, as was done, and if possible, this regency was to calm the tempers and after a time, after making some fraudulent changes and proclaiming some false democratic rights, would bring back to power, not the Shah, but his son. In other words, the United States of America would return to its omnipotence in Iran and retain the big oil concessions.
The situation is becoming more and more difficult each day for Bakhtiar, hence, the end is coming for him, too. The rising tide of the insurrection of the people has shut him in the presidential palace whence, through Tehran Radio, he is threatening the Iranian people that if law and order are not established, he will resign and will take the matter to the army, which will no longer be bound by its oath of loyalty to the power of the regency and the government which has emerged from this regency. In other words, he is threatening that the imperial military caste might carry out a military putsch in Iran. In fact this threat is an expedient which the United States of America is trying against the Iranian people, after attempting many other actions which failed. We must realize that the United States has a very large number of military specialists and advisers and others disguised as oil experts or managers of various companies in Iran.
Therefore, within Iran there is a force of nearly 40,000 Americans, so that the 1,000 or 2,000 Americans whom the newspapers say have left, are of no significance.
Let us turn now to the leader of the Shia Moslem sect, Khomeini. His stand has been and is against the Shah of Iran. He has declared that he is against American imperialism and any other imperialism, that he will return to Iran on Friday, that is, the day after tomorrow and, with a broad popular consensus, will overthrow the Bakhtiar government and the Regency Council and proclaim the formation of an Islamic republic.
Hence, it is obvious that Ayatollah Khomeini has powerful support in Iran. In fact he also has an organization. This means that the big capitalist and feudal bourgeoisie, now separated from the regime of the Shah, is organized in a national front, but with pronounced religious tendencies. By means of this organization, about the nature and strength of which we have little concrete information, Khomeini has managed to eliminate the corrupt power of the Shah and Bakhtiar and, according to reports, Islamic committees, that is, committees of state power, have been created and these have assumed the guiding role in the life of the country and the administration, while the army is still waiting to see what happens. What will it do when Khomeini returns to Iran? Will it attack, carry out a coup d'état, or will it place itself in the service of Ayatollah Khomeini and his Islamic organization?
We shall have to wait and see. However, it is possible that the attack by the army will be avoided because American imperialism is afraid of a civil war in Iran. A civil war in Iran would be in the disfavour of the United States of America and all the other imperialist powers. It would be another major conflagration in the Middle East.
For this reason, the former American Secretary of Justice, Clark, went to France allegedly on a private visit. After a very long talk with Khomeini, Clark returned immediately to Washington.
Hence, Ford, on the one hand, and the former American Secretary of Justice, on the other hand. It seems to me that the thesis that the Shah's army will submit to Khomeini is the most likely. The United States will set all the people of its vast secret agency in Iran in motion and will try to infiltrate into the Shia organization of Ayatollah Khomeini. While offering him its advice, the United States will accept whatever Ayatollah Khomeini decides. In Paris he declared that there will be no leftists, no communists taking part in any government he forms, but only progressive popular elements who are for reforms, etc. In other words, Ayatollah Khomeini has under his command a very strong party, organized in illegality, which has now emerged in the light and which may refuse to accept people from the «Tudeh» Party, which is under Soviet influence, especially in the leadership of the state.
The «Tudeh» Party also came out with declarations and placards and, in street demonstrations, indicated that it accepted the points of Ayatollah Khomeini's program and would support it with its activities. Therefore, it is likely to demand from Ayatollah Khomeini that it, too, should participate in the government. Whether or not Ayatollah Khomeini will accept it, this, of course, we shall see later, in practice.
As to the Marxist-Leninists, that is, those who are inspired by the Workers and Peasants' Communist Party known as «Tufan», or other groups around this Marxist-Leninist party, the news agencies say that they, too, have come out in demonstrations in the streets, and their slogans are correct. They support the people's uprising and demand that it should go further, that the people should strive for profound bourgeoisdemocratic reforms, for the total liquidation of the fascist monarchic regime of the Shah and that the future regime should have sound democratic features.
Towards this very powerful movement in Iran which is having great repercussions in the world, the China of Hua Guofeng and Deng Xiaoping remains dumb and has completely shut its mouth. It has nothing to say and there is nothing it can say, because it has come out openly in defence of the Shahanshah of Iran and against the popular uprising. We know that when Hua Guofeng was returning from Belgrade, he stopped in Tehran where he met, talked and dined with the Shah of Iran, at moments when the streets of Tehran were seething with the mighty demonstrations of the people on whom the machine-guns of the Imperial Guard of the Shah poured volleys of bullets.
Now Hua Guofeng's China is preparing to send Deng Xiaoping to Washington. In their main articles foreign news agencies and the «New York Times» say that the United States of America and Carter will turn out to give Deng Xiaoping a welcome just as majestic as that they gave Khrushchev. They will welcome him with showers of flowers and ticker-tape thrown from the skyscrapers. That is why China «has no time» to speak about the struggle and the revolt of the Iranian people!
SATURDAY - JANUARY 27, 1979
THE SITUATION IN IRAN IS COMPLICATED
The situation in Iran continues to be disturbed and there are no signs of stability yet.
Ayatollah Khomeini, who had declared that he would be in Iran on Friday without fail, was unable to stick to this decision, because the Bakhtiar government closed all the airports of the country and declared that Ayatollah Khomeini could not return to Iran for at least three days.
Hence, all the airports have been occupied by the army and during this time, of course, combinations are being hatched up between the Bakhtiar government and the Shah, who is strolling in the parks of the King of Morocco and is said to be going back to his friend Sadat in Egypt.
According to the news agencies, the Secretary of the US Department of State has returned to Washington. All the facts show that the actions of the Bakhtiar government are commanded by the United States of America.
Bakhtiar declared that legislative elections would be held for the Constituent Assembly within four months and it would emerge from these elections whether the people choose a republican regime or a constitutional monarchy.
At that time, says Bakhtiar it will be decided whether Khomeini should be pardoned and allowed to return or should be banned. That means that during this period a thousand and one intrigues will be hatched up.
As for Ayatollah Khomeini, he has declared that he will fly to Tehran tomorrow, Sunday.
How can he land there when the airports of Iran are filled with tanks? Civil war will have to break out, that is, a clash between the military forces and the people, because to capture the airports the people will have to defeat Bakhtiar's army. This is the only way that Ayatollah Khomeini can return. But there is another way, the illegal way, which is both possible and impossible:
Ayatollah Khomeini cannot travel via Saudi Arabia, because that country does not permit this since it is pro the Shah and because the more the functioning of the oil-wells and the refineries of Abadan is delayed, the better for Saudi Arabia.
Likewise for Iraq. That leaves the Soviet route, but Ayatollah Khomeini has declared that he is neither with the Soviets nor with the Americans.
Therefore, the return of Ayatollah Khomeini to Iran illegally will be the signal for the commencement of the civil war. If Khomeini is determined to do this, he will not act badly, provided it is not done by means of the Soviets.
Nevertheless, the revolution must forge ahead and conquer the armed guard on which the imperial bourgeoisie of the Shah and the American CIA are relying...
The problem is very complicated. The fact is that during this time the people continue to come out in the streets against the regime of the Shah, against the Bakhtiar government, against the state of emergency, against the army at the risk of their lives. Scores are killed every night.
There are major movements among the students and the workers who are on strike. We must watch how the situation develops now, because the development and course of events in Iran have exceptional importance in the international situation at present.
MONDAY - FEBRUARY 12, 1979
A NEW VICTORY OF THE IRANIAN PEOPLE
It has been announced that the Iranian government of Shapour Bakhtiar, which the Shah appointed before he was kicked out, has been overthrown together with the regency which the Shah left behind him. This is a new victory in the long struggle of the Iranian people for the liquidation of the Pahlavi dynasty once and for all and, at the same time, of the influence of American imperialism in that country. The formation of a new government has been announced.
The situation is very tense but revolutionary in all the Iranian cities. There have been bloody clashes with the police and army detachments loyal to the Shah.
TUESDAY - FEBRUARY 13, 1979
THE REVOLUTION OF THE IRANIAN PEOPLE HAS TRIUMPHED
The popular revolution in Iran has triumphed, the feudal monarchy of the Pahlavis has been overthrown. Yesterday the government of the Shah, headed by Shapour Bakhtiar, gave up the ghost. The regency established for manoeuvres against the people collapsed and the famous Imperial Guard was routed. Likewise, SAVAK, the notorious police force of the Shah, was routed. This is a great triumph for the broad masses of the revolutionary Iranian people, who have fought persistently for years on end with valour and self-sacrifice and in the last three or four months have struck the decisive blow at the detested monarchy of the Shah, Mohammed Riza Pahlavi.
This anti-feudal and anti-imperialist revolution of the Iranian people is markedly influenced by the spirit of the Shia mullahs, headed by Ayatollah Khomeini, the successor to Ayatollah Kashani, who was the leader of the Shia sect in Iran at the time of Mossadeq. The fact that they have influence cannot be denied, but their influence, however it may be dressed up in a democratic cloak, is nothing but a consequence of a retrogade idealist philosophy just as mediaeval as that of the monarchic regime.
But the times require that they establish in Iran, under this cloak and this philosophy, a so-called Islamic Republic, which sooner or later might strengthen the foundations of a reactionary state power and establish links, new ones, of course, and in forms somewhat more favourable to Iran, with American imperialism and the other imperialists.
Ayatollah Khomeini's Shias manoeuvred within this movement in which the people were the decisive force, though there were other forces, too. The «Tudeh» Party which, as far as we know, is under the influence of the Soviets, did not remain idle. In this revolution the progressive anti-imperialist elements and the Marxist-Leninists could not have been a major force. They were still lacking the necessary formation. But during this revolution they learned how to fight. Now their task is to consolidate themselves and to insist, by means of the broad masses of the people, that this revolution of a bourgeois-democratic character should advance and gradually free itself from the Shia idealist ideology. Hence, they should be the first to expropriate the property of feudals and capitalists, making it the property of the whole people, to carry out the agrarian reform, an agrarian reform not just in words but in the interests of the poor and middle peasants of Iran. Likewise, they must deepen the revolution, impelling the advance of the great revolutionary force of the Iranian proletariat, of the workers of the oil industry and other sectors of industry, because American imperialism has invested large amounts of capital in Iran, has built modern refineries and also various other factories in which a working class large in number is employed.
Hence, without immediately becoming involved in struggle on all fronts with the Shia movement, which seems to have a stronger influence in Iran, the Iranian Marxist-Leninists, the revolutionaries and progressive elements must aim their efforts to oppose the idealist philosophy of this movement, because already we see that these religious zealots have gone into action.
The mosques there are becoming main centres of indoctrination and Ayatollah Khomeini is making appeals to the people to go to the mosques for everything and there, apart from the instructions which Khomeini himself gives, the hodjas advise them on what they should do. It must be recognized that among the instructions which are given there, some are correct, for instance those which say that the elements hostile to the Iranian people must be liquidated.
Apart from other things, the revolutionaries, the Marxist-Leninists, the progressive elements of various classes must free themselves of the shackles of religion and of the religious ideology and teachings, above all, the women must be liberated from Islamic slavery, the veils which they are forced to wear must be done away with, so that the women uncover their faces. The women must start work in factories and everywhere else. In Iran, a country in which a mediaeval religious fascist and imperialist regime has prevailed right up to these days, the women comprise half the population and, as in every other country, they are one of the most revolutionary forces, second only to the proletariat.
The revolutionaries and Marxist-Leninists of Iran, the proletariat itself, must have learned from the savage exploitation which American, British and French imperialism and all world capitalism have imposed on them, therefore they must no longer allow the wealth of their country to be shared out again in different proportions amongst these same imperialists. Naturally, Iran cannot exist in isolation. It cannot fail to produce and sell oil. Oil is a great wealth of that country, but it is also a vital sinew for the Western world, especially for world capitalism, which could go as far as waging war over the Iranian petroleum.
Iran could be a field of battle between American and world imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism, which has about two thousand kilometres of common border with Iran where many Azerbaijanis live. The Azerbaijanis of Iran have family and tribal links with those of the Soviet Union, therefore it is impossible that that country does not have influence on the revolution of the people of Iran, not have its own men in the «Tudeh» Party and other political strata.
Thus, knowing that the importance of Iran is based mainly on its oil, and all of them will fight for the oil, the Iranian revolutionaries must be vigilant on this question. According to what the foreign news agencies say, influential people consider the blockade of Iranian oil much more terrible than the blockade of Berlin, the war in Korea, or the war in Vietnam. It is a fact that the events in Iran, the four-month strike by the oil extraction workers, have caused the capitalist industry of Europe and America losses from which it will take them at least two years to recover.
Therefore this is an acute problem. If the Iranians stick firmly to these revolutionary positions and proceed in the future with serious persistence, this action of theirs will certainly have a great influence on the other countries of the Middle East, too. Already Khomeini has refused to supply oil to Israel, the friend of the Americans, which got 75 per cent of its petrol from Iran, and has likewise refused to supply Rhodesia and the racists of South Africa.
If the new state which is being formed deals with the problem of oil in the interests of the Iranian people and the other peoples who are languishing under the domination of imperialists and social-imperialists, then this is progress for the revolution.
But, of course, the Iranian revolutionaries, Marxist-Leninists and proletariat have to understand that they cannot do what they like, as they like and all at once. The situation, the present objectively revolutionary situation, the subjective aspect of which is dominated by the religious idealist element, must develop still further. That powerful element must be gradually outflanked by means of more progressive alliances, or by hindering it in those actions which are harmful to the interests of the people, precisely by means of the great revolutionary strength of the people.
The Iranian people must be made aware that they themselves achieved the victory, that it was a result of their struggle and it was not won by Ayatollah Khomeini, Allah, hazret Ali or hazret Hussein. There has been, is and certainly will be in the future, a great deal of talk about the Islamic inspiration of this revolution, but the decisive factor in it was the fight of the people and the workers who were shot down in the streets, against the Shah, against his mediaeval empire and against imperialism, to win a free life and a happier future, a genuine democracy until the socialist revolution is achieved.
TUESDAY - FEBRUARY 13, 1979
THESES FOR A NEW ARTICLE ABOUT THE EVENTS IN IRAN
I talked to the comrades about the need to prepare another article (Reference is to the article entitled: «The Iranian Working Class Came Out on the Battlefield, Overthrew the Shah and Shook the Capitalist World», published in the newspaper «Zëri i popullit» on February 18, 1979.) on the revolution of the Iranian people, in which it should be stressed that this revolution which overthrew the mediaeval feudal monarchy of the Shah of Iran also struck a heavy blow at the imperialist powers, especially American imperialism, and at world capitalism in general, which, up till now, had profited by plundering the oil and exploiting the people of that country to the bone.
In the article we should point out that Lenin's thesis that the present epoch is the epoch of revolutions and the dictatorship of the proletariat is being confirmed. We shoud point out also that our Party has said that now the revolution is not just an aspiration but a problem on the agenda, and the uprising of the Iranian people confirms this thesis. With world developments in their present state, this revolution will certainly be followed by other revolutions, of course, of varying intensity. The example of Iran will have an influence in other countries, thus assisting the liberation struggle of all oppressed peoples.
In the article we must not deny the subjective influence of the Shia religious sect, because it has played a positive role in the overthrow of the imperial regime of the Pahlavi feudal dynasty.
At the same time, we must point out, however, that the ideology which guides this sect is idealist, religious, therefore it can never properly and fully realize the democratic aspirations of the lay masses of the people of Iran, who from the outside might seem to be religious, but in action, and precisely in this revolution, proved to be progressive, objective and radical.
It should emerge clearly that the inspiration in this revolution against the feudal dynasty of the Shah, Mohammed Riza Pahlavi, and imperialism is not merely religious and idealist, but has also a progressive democratic character. The popular masses displayed their eagerness for major transformations, for the land reform, for a really progressive cultural development, for the elimination of the backwardness of the people and the women and girls of Iran who, coming out in the streets to fight, engaged in bloody clashes with S A V A K and the Imperial Guard. Hence, it should be pointed out that for these masses it was not the problem of the Islamic religion, but the problem of the liberation of the people, of the working class, of the peasantry, the women and the youth of that country that presented itself.
We must also stress what Lenin said about the revolution, that this is a serious issue which, if you involve yourself in it, you must carry through to the end. In this way we should warn the people of Iran to be vigilant, so that they do not allow themselves to fall once more under the yoke of foreign imperialists, whether American, Soviet or others, who will certainly intrigue and try by means of compromises and bribery to corrupt the corruptable, to regain control of their old concessions and positions through other «new» forms, with great profits for themselves and losses for the people of Iran. In the article we should stress that the Iranian people must never allow this. To prevent this from coming about the old state power must be smashed to its foundations and new organs of state power created, a new Constitution of theirs must be prepared and this must borrow nothing from the so-called democracy of the bourgeoisie. On the question of the organization of the state, the Iranian people must not allow the feudal bourgeoisie to infiltrate into its institutions, but must take complete control of these institutions themselves, placing in them their most faithful representatives who will carry out real major social and economic reforms.
We must develop the part in which we point out how Lenin's thesis that the revolution must be carried through to the end should be understood, while making clear that one cannot go on to the proletarian revolution immediately. The progressive forces must gain ground gradually, winning sound democratic and progressive positions against all reactionary elements, especially against remnants of the backward feudalism of the past that will resist the revolution.
The article should also stress the fact that the Iranian people have to take proper account of the strategic position of their country and all the means they have in their hands to defend the victories of the revolution. Oil is the strongest weapon they hold, because it is known that whoever has the oil has the strength in Iran. Therefore, the working class must never allow anybody to wrest this powerful weapon from them.
Throughout the Iranian revolution, during the past four months in particular, the oil has continued to shake the capitalist world. Therefore, we should point out that the people of Iran must be made conscious of the need to keep a firm grip on this weapon, to fear neither the Americans, the Soviets, nor the other coalitions, to have no fear of isolation and to defend their wealth with determination. By utilizing the developing situation with proper wisdom, always bearing in mind the interests of their homeland and the interests of the other peoples of the world who are fighting for freedom, a country in revolution, which has control of such a weapon as oil, which has such a courageous people who overthrew a rotten old world, such as the empire and dynasty of the Pahlavis was, in order to build a new life, is capable of resisting all enemies.
We can say the Iranian people ought to consider that their struggle also assists the liberation struggle of all peoples. For this we Albanians have exceptionally great respect and bow in honour to the fallen heroes who fought in the streets of the Iranian cities and gave their lives for this victory.
In the article we should also mention the Marxist-Leninist communists and the genuine revolutionaries.
We should say that they must be in the forefront of the struggle and at these moments should be neither sectarian nor opportunist and in no instance play the game of those who, under whatever disguise they present themselves, will try through a thousand and one tricks to deceive the people, to hinder the radical reforms and serve the superpowers.
Faced with the stubborn determination of the people to win their rights, the monarchy. The Pahlavi empire and the caste of senior officers could not resist, although they were supported by American imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism, so they were overthrown. In this popular uprising the members of the military caste, watch-dogs of the Shah of Iran, grown fat on American dollars, were unable to preserve the unity of the army, because the young men of the people refused to follow them. It should be pointed out that the main force in any army is comprised of the young men of the people, therefore, the new army in Iran must be a democratic army. The progressive individuals who will be placed at the head of it must not allow its ranks to be penetrated by elements of the reactionary military caste, who will try to use the young men of the people to kill the people. It should be said that even in the bourgeois-democratic revolution in France the sans-culottes promoted outstanding commanders from their ranks and routed the army of the French kings, the aristocracy and feudalism. This example is very relevant at the present time when weapons have become the dread of the world, but it depends on who has control of these weapons and against whom they are directed.
WEDNESDAY - FEBRUARY 14, 1979
NEW THESES FOR THE ARTICLE ON THE EVENTS IN IRAN
I told Comrade Ramiz that in the article that is to be published about Iran, when speaking about the broad masses of the people who came out in the streets in their millions, rose against the Shah and his patron, imperialism, and carried out the revolution, it would be a good thing to quote parts of the article we wrote ten to eleven years ago, on the eve of the occupation of Czechoslovakia by the Soviet social-imperialists.
Second, I told him that it should come out clearly that the revolution cannot be carried out without violence. In the case of Iran hundreds and thousands of people were killed in the streets by the Shah's gangs. The revolution triumphed there, but it was won at the cost of bloodshed.
Therefore I expressed the opinion that we should accompany certain questions in the article with excerpts from the book «Imperialism and the Revolution». (This book of Comrade Enver Hoxha has been published in Albanian and several foreign languages by «8 Nëntori» Publishing House, Tirana 1978.) Our Party has defended the important theses of Marxism-Leninism that the revolution is won with violence, that the revolution is on the agenda today, that many local cliques are in the service of imperialism and if they are not combated, the fight against imperialism cannot be successful. The events in Iran confirm the correctness of these theses and it should be pointed out that what occurred in Iran will occur in other countries, too.
The fact should also emerge clearly from this article that the working class took up arms and came out in the streets, hurled itself into the struggle, boycotted the administration of the Shah, shook American imperialism and the whole western capitalist world by standing in the forefront of the struggle of the Iranian people to escape from the savage exploitation of the Shah and foreign imperialists. With the fight it waged and the role it played in this anti-feudal and anti-imperialist democratic revolution, the Iranian working class demonstrated to the world that it is the only social force to which the future belongs.
It should be pointed out in the article that on the basis of Lenin's teachings the working class is the only class which must lead the revolution.
The uprising of the people of Iran, led by the working class, proves the opposite of what the bourgeoisie and revisionists preach about the role of this class in the revolution. It was precisely the Iranian working class which shook the rotten bourgeois world to its foundations, however, it must be vigilant to avoid becoming downtrodden again. What occurred in Iran will occur in all the other so-called independent and democratic countries, whether monarchies or republics, in which the people are oppressed by the big bourgeoisie closely linked with foreigners.
Hence, in this article we should give a supplementary explanation to the theses our Party has expressed in its various documents.
I gave instructions that as soon as this article comes out it must be transmitted immediately by radio, because the revolution of the Iranian people against the monarchy and imperialism is an event of major world importance.
THURSDAY - FEBRUARY 15, 1979
SOME THOUGHTS ABOUT THE EVENTS IN IRAN AND THE PRESENT SITUATION
The anti-imperialist revolution of the Iranian people will have major repercussions, not just in the Middle East, but throughout the whole world, especially in the capitalist-revisionist imperialist world.
As I have written before, this was an antifeudal and anti-imperialist popular revolution with features of a bourgeois-democratic revolution.
The very broad participation of the working masses of city and countryside, workers of the oil industry and other branches of the economy, poor peasants, student youth, progressive elements of the intelligentsia, democratic-bourgeois politicians, leaders of the Shia sect, soldiers, sons of the people, give it its popular character.
However, I think we must wait and see whether it will be turned into a true bourgeois-democratic revolution, because this depends on the reforms that ought to be carried out and will be carried out after its triumph, especially a far-reaching land reform which should return the plundered land to those who work it, the Iranian peasants, and other reforms which will give the people genuine democratic freedoms while pressing on uncompromisingly with the struggle against the influence and interference of any kind of imperialism in the internal affairs of Iran. Time will make this clear to us.
The Iranian people had been left in the dark ages, in backwardness, especially in the countryside, where the big landowners made the mediaeval law. Even that industrial pseudo-modernization which was seen in the cities, especially in the capital and other main cities such as Isfahan, etc., was a forced industrialization created by a great inflation of the petrol dollar which had not lifted the Iranian working people out of poverty and want. The oppressed and exploited Iranian working class is a truly heroic class, the Iranians are an intelligent people with a manysided ancient culture, who have produced great men, but the British imperialist exploiters and later, the American exploiters, operated together in such a way that the people were left in backwardness, while the wealth of Iran, the land and its underground riches passed into the possession of the exploiters. The whole of Iran was to become the property of world capitalism.
The British, American, Dutch and other big oil companies had their men in Iran, top and middle cadres and specialists, while the Iranian working class was left at such a level that hardly anyone sufficiently qualified to run production in the factories, plants and refineries could emerge from its ranks. Those who had been sent to schools and were appointed to manage production were individuals chosen solely from the bourgeoisie, which had fattened itself and was utterly corrupted, together with the Shah.
With «progress and development» reduced to such a state in Iran, its education and culture had been obscured by a dense fog, if they existed at all. Its culture developed extremely slowly and had been deformed so as to keep the masses oppressed under the regime of autocrats. Of course, a major role in all this was played by the reactionary representatives of religion, who did their obscurantist work both under the dynasty of the Qajars and under the dynasty of the Pahlavis. In order to inhibit the development of the people's consciousness about the need to fight for national liberation from the yoke of imperialist occupiers they interfered especially in the superstructure, hence, also in art and culture. The ancient Persian art and culture had been ignored and lost and the Islamic philosophy of the imams predominated in Iranian art and culture. Now the mosques were no longer houses of culture, as they were in the time of Saadi and Ferdousi, when, apart from religious services, debates about philosophy, astronomy, mathematics, and the social state of people were held in them. No, now they had the same function as they had in the Ottoman Empire, that is, they served only to pray to Mohammed and God and the successors to Mohammed, Imam Ali, Imam Hussein, and other imams.
The situation was very onerous for the masses of the people, but with the passage of time the oppression was intensified, the oil, that great underground wealth of Iran, became a sharp weapon in the hands of imperialists and the Shah and the sheiks who, insatiable for wealth gambled with the fate and the assets of the people in favour of the empire and the repressive army they created. Thus, the Shah of Iran was one of the wealthiest men in the world. The Iranian army ranked fourth in the world for its armaments and fire-power. However, the generals and other senior officers of this army were a corrupt clique who defended the immense wealth of the Shah and his followers. There was an immense gulf between the soldiers, sons of the people, and this clique of officers. The anti-imperialist popular revolution of the Iranian people made
this army, which, as I said, was ranked fourth in the world, and armed with the most sophisticated weapons, worthless. Thus, the Shah's army could not perform the task with which the Shah and his patron, American imperialism, had charged it.
Hence, this oppression, this discontent spread over the entire mass of the people, took concrete form, the transition from quantity to quality took place and the most suitable objective and subjective moments were found precisely by the people and by the workers, and this led to the revolt of the people against the Shah and against the American and other imperialists.
So the Iranian people, men and women, old and young, carried out the revolution. People from the Iranian working class, from the workers of the oil industry and all other branches of the economy, were in the forefront of this revolution.
The people rose and marched forward in bloody demonstrations even though the Shah, thinking that he could intimidate them, ordered his troops to open fire and hundreds and thousands of people were killed. Of course, Imam Khomeini utilized this objective situation and, with his own people, with that considerable grouping of Shia believers, was able to play a role, very important in appearance, a thing which has been publicized by the whole world. It must be said, however, that in this popular uprising one could see mainly the youth, men and women, who raised their clenched fists and were killed in the streets. Somebody led them.
The Western news agencies showered Ayatollah Khomeini and his Shia group with publicity, presenting him as the inspirer of all these events. However, without excluding the influence of the Shia sect and religion, I think that this anti-imperialist revolution of the Iranian people had a class character, was in essence a social revolution and not a revolution of a religious character.
Hence, we cannot consider it an Islamic revolution. They call it an Islamic revolution for many reasons, the main one being that they want to conceal a great truth from the broad masses of the people; namely, that the internal exploiting classes, which are closely linked with the foreign imperialists, can be overthrown only through a class revolution. That is why attempts are made to describe uprisings of this kind as allegedly inspired by religion. So we see once again that religion is always used as an element moderating and inhibiting revolutionary actions, that is, an idealist element.
Apart from this the western world, the capitalist world, wants to depict the revolution of the Iranian people not as a class struggle but as a religious struggle, in order to create the false idea that the Islamic world is rising against the Christian world. That is, it wants to turn the revolutionary moments which exist at present and which are demanding solution, the moments of proletarian revolutions, as Engels calls them, into mediaeval religious wars like those between Catholics and Protestants, in other words, wants to turn the clock back to the time of the crusades.
According to the capitalist world, the crusades are being repeated in the Middle East, allegedly over who should hold Jerusalem, who should have alliances with Syria, who should be on good terms with Lebanon, with the Christians or the Moslems of Lebanon, and other such tales.
It is true that the Arab world, in general, professes the Moslem religion, but in this Arab world there is also a sense of hatred for internal oppressors and foreign imperialists who, in order to rule, are intriguing in every direction, setting one people against the other, and when they see that they are losing, as is occurring in Iran at present, they try to give the anti-feudal and antiimperialist national liberation struggle the colour of an anti-scientific Islamic religious struggle.
They are doing this precisely at the moment when world capitalism is going through a great crisis from which it is unable to find any way out. All these anti-imperialist social revolutions, however, result from the hatred of the people for those who suck their blood. It is the blood-suckers who cause the discontent, the great strikes in the United States of America, in Britain, France, Italy, the Soviet Union and elsewhere. Meanwhile the purpose of the imperialists, with these colours in which they want to depict such movements as that in Iran, is to tell the strikers in their own countries: see with what sort of people we have to deal, ignorant oafs, who want to take the world back to the Middle Ages, who want to return to religious wars, that is why we are obliged to close factories, to throw the workers out in the streets, to raise prices, to reduce wages, because there are no supplies of oil. Hence, not we capitalists, but the Moslem peoples, the Arab peoples, are the culprits.
There is a diabolical purpose in this, which we must expose. The wars for national and social liberation, whether in the Middle East, Africa or elsewhere, are wars with a national liberation and anti-imperialist character. Although, for one reason or the other, the proletariat is not at the head of the masses of the people in these wars and does not have its own party, in the revolutionary situations that will be created in the future the progressive elements, in alliance with the poor peasantry demanding land, will create the conditions in which the fighting proletariat must hurl itself into struggle, and the genuine party of the proletariat, the genuine leadership of the state, and the genuine popular army will emerge, an army which will serve the people and not the new theocratic bourgeoisie, this time cloaked in allegedly democratic forms. In regard to Iran, it is a fact that the proletariat, the workers of the oil industry who took part in the people's uprising, triumphed.
There was much talk about Ayatollah Khomeini's return to Iran. Bakhtiar tried to prevent it but in the end he fled the country together with his generals. Many generals who stayed behind in Iran were executed. Ayatollah Khomeini, who does not feel secure, is appealing to the people for order and calm, but they are not quietening down, are still in movement and reply: We will not lay down our arms! These things we see in the news agency reports. American and British imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism and all the others will try to take advantage of the disturbances which may be incited in Iran against the order which has been established there. In this direction everything depends on the vigilance, the ability and persistence of the progressive Iranians who set about the revolution. They must continue it, passing from one stage to the other, and at each stage finding solutions to important problems through radical reforms and not superficial, false reforms just for appearances, because all will try to calm this situation. We see that Carter, in his recent interviews, seems extremely frightened and shaken: they killed his ambassador in Afghanistan and he says nothing. In the capital of Iran the «guards of the Revolution» took the American embassy by storm, and captured the titular head, 60 officials and 19 marine guards, who offered no resistance. Many documents were captured there and these will be useful to the Iranian people eventually. It required the intervention of the new provisional prime minister of Iran, Bazargan, to save the lives of the prisoners.
It must be said, also, that there is the danger of intervention. Indeed it has already begun by the Soviet social-imperialists who want to create their spheres of influence in the Middle East, especially in Iran, where there is a large number of Azerbaijanis (half the Azerbaijanis live in the Soviet Union and half in Iran). There are also the Kurds who are in movement at these moments, not only in Iran, but also in Turkey. However, there are Kurds in the Soviet Union, too.
In this situation the Soviet social-imperialists are operating through the KGB, too.
The question of Iran has placed the United States of America in an exceptionally difficult position in the Persian Gulf, too, for instance in Kuwait where 35 per cent of the population is Palestinian, and in Saudi Arabia where the nationalization of the Arab-American oil company ARAMCO may be demanded.
With the expulsion from Iran of the Shah, who had become the gendarme of the United States of America in the Middle East and the Persian Gulf, the main oil supplies to Israel were cut off. Hence, the dangers are great. Therefore, we must follow these matters with great vigilance and special attention in order to see how and in whose favour they will be settled.
We must explain things clearly and openly, just as they are, to those who want to listen to us, without hurting the religious feelings of the Arab peoples in this great revolutionary class movement. At the same time, in one way or another, we must tell them that this is not an Islamic war, as Carter and others claim, but a struggle, a revolution of the poor against the rich.
WEDNESDEY – FEBRUARY 21, 1979
DEVELOPMENTS IN THE MIDDLE EAST ARE NOT FAVOURABLE TO IMPERIALISM
Developments in the Middle East region and Iran, of course, are not favourable either to the United States of America or to world imperialism.
In this situation, the Soviet Union, which borders on Iran, is ready to overrun the whole country quickly in case of a conflict. At present, however, it is operating in a subversive way, through the large forces of the «Tudeh» Party, the Azerbaijanis and the Kurds, although Mullah Barzani is now no longer in Iraq, but in the United States. The fact that he is in the United States of America allows us to think that that country, too, has set in motion the Kurdish factor in Iran to serve as a counterweight to the Soviet subversion through Azerbaijan.
The United States of America has sent Brown, the Secretary of Defence, to the Middle East. He is going from state to state to arrange something and this something is an effective resistance of the bourgeois ruling circles against the people's uprisings which could occur in the countries of the Middle East, as it did in Iran, or to get commitments from the Emirates and the other Arab countries to resist any eventual Soviet threat. Likewise, we see that Carter has again summoned Moshe Dayan and the Egyptian prime minister to Washington to continue the talks on signing the peace agreement in Camp David.
At present Israel is in danger. Ayatollah Khomeini has declared openly that he will defend the Palestinians in their struggle against Israel.
He has closed the Israeli embassy in Tehran and expelled the Israeli diplomats from Iran. The oil supplies which Israel received from the Shah of Iran have been cut off and now it is obliged to get oil elsewhere. In these conditions the United States of America is compelling Israel to reach agreement with Egypt, in other words, to accept the conditions Carter has laid down for such an agreement and stop kicking against it.
In view of this very dangerous situation in Iran, the Persian Gulf and the whole Middle East, the United States of America has set the agents of the CIA in motion. They see that the Soviet threat could come from Iran or from Iraq, and could also come from Syria or from South Yemen which can cross the Khali Desert and reach Oman, and join the Palestinians in Kuwait to stage a coup d'état. If this were to happen the United States of America would lose its whole strategic position and its economic power over the oil of the Middle East and Iran.
Today I heard that Ayatollah Khomeini has banned demonstrations with Marxist-Leninist tendencies at the universities of the country.
This implies that the forces of the left, of course the «Tudeh» Party, but also the Marxist-Leninist forces, have now been set in movement there. It is possible that the Workers and Peasants' Communist Party of Iran known as «Toufan» or some other party unknown to us, also has its people in the recent events. In any case, movements are arising there of groups which support a still more revolutionary situation and not the Islamic spirit which world reaction wants to give the revolution in Iran.
We shall see how the situation in Iran develops, but at the moment it is not quiet and, of course, it will evolve. We published an article on the events which have occurred in that country, but we notice that the foreign news agencies, which up till now have always been ready to report our articles, this time are saying nothing about our article on the situation in Iran and the future of the revolution there. They have put the lid on it because it is not in their interests.
THURSDAY - MARCH 8, 1979
ON THE SITUATION IN IRAN
From information we receive and the reports of news agencies which I read regularly, it is clear that regardless of the Islamic slogans which are used to show that the religious spirit is allegedly predominant in it, the Iranian revolution is an anti-feudal and anti-imperialist popular revolution.
It seems that Khomeini, who emerges as the main leader of the uprising, is the head of the Islamic party which must be the biggest party in the country. We noticed this from the time when the demonstrations against the regime of the Shah began, in other words, when the uprising started. On television and in the newspapers we saw that Khomeini was presented as the spiritual leader of the masses in the revolt against the Shah.
Now it emerges that Khomeini is collaborating also with the other democratic parties whose aim was the overthrow of the feudal monarchy and its government, and is for the establishment of democracy. Apparently Khomeini is also opposed to foreign intervention.
As far as we can see and as the various news agencies say, the Islamic party, the party of the Mujahideens and the «Tudeh» Party played the main role in the Iranian revolution. As far as can be seen, the party of the Mujahideens is the second party in Iran. This party is said to have a faction under the influence of Maoists, a thing which may or may not be true. However, it is possible that the Maoists, in collaboration with the Shah, have created such a faction which remained in support and defence of the Shah as long as he was in power, but now that he has fallen it may have emerged as independent. Apparently, the Fedayeens, some of whom have been trained in foreign camps, are the commandos of the party of the Muhajideens. Seeing the influence that this party has among the people and its strength, Khomeini is collaborating with it and he personally gave the order for the release of thousands of fighters imprisoned by the regime of the Shah.
The «Tudeh» Party, which calls itself a communist party, is linked with the Soviet Union. It occupies third place amongst the other parties.
When the uprising was over those two parties refused to surrender their weapons, but Khomeini threatened that he would use force to suppress them, and it seems that they were obliged to support his policy.
It is said that the Soviet ambassador in Iran asked the Iranian government to give the «Tudeh» Party complete freedom, but it was made clear to him that it had to operate in the same conditions as all the other parties. Now this party has demanded, on the occasion of new elections, to have two representatives in the government.
By following the reports of foreign news agencies on the events in Iran attentively, we can reach the conclusion that the aim of the Iranian revolution is to give the masses democratic freedoms and wants to put an end to foreign intervention in Iran. However, to what extent such a thing will be realized we shall see from future developments.
The United States of America, Britain and other capitalist states and the Middle-East countries with reactionary regimes are very worried about the situation in Iran. The United States has been obliged to recognize the new regime in Iran, but is trying through its agents to organize plots, to stop the revolutionary momentum of the Iranian people and to intimidate them into going no further on the course they are following.
The reactionary regime of Saudi Arabia, also, is very worried about the situation in Iran, because the same feudal oppression and exploitation that existed in Iran exist in that country too. A similar fate awaits the reactionary regime of Saudi Arabia, if not today, certainly tomorrow.
It is said that following the referendum on the proclamation of the republic and some other measures, Khomeini will also demand the removal of the American bases from Iran. It is said that the Americans want to transfer these bases to the Greek island of Crete. We shall see to what extent this, too, will be realized. One thing is certain: today Carter is going to Egypt and from there he will go on to Israel. His visit to these two countries is linked with the signing of the «peace» agreement between Egypt and Israel.
In other words, the United States of America has put the hard word on these two satellites. Both these countries may also have other secret agreements with the United States and not only on arms supplies. The Secretary of the US Department of Defence, Brown, who has been in this region for weeks, may have hatched up some secret agreement with the heads of Saudi Arabia, too. Hence, it is possible that a bloc of gendarmes will be created with some countries of this zone against Syria, Iraq and Iran, which have expressed their opposition to Sadat and Israel.
Syria and Iraq have the support and the backing of the Soviets, from whom they buy weapons, too.
Up till now Khomeini is saying that the Soviet Union must not interfere in the internal affairs of Iran. But his stand is still not clearly defined. We shall see what stand he will take later. Nevertheless, the status quo so greatly desired by the Americans no longer exists in the oil zone of the Middle East. It has been upset by the overthrow of the Shah, Mohammed Pahlavi, and the Pahlavi monarchy, which was the gendarme of American imperialism in the whole of this zone.
According to reports from our embassies, our article on Iran, which was published in the newspaper «Zëri i popullit» on February 18 (See this volume, footnote p. 232), casued a stir in the Arab countries and has found their full approval. We do not know whether it managed to penetrate into Iran.
Now, however, the problem is how things are going on in Iran. Nothing has been stabilized there. Khomeini imagined that after the overthrow of the Shah he would guide the revolution in the spirit of the Koran, which he presented as a democratic spirit, allegedly for complete freedom, for true Islamic democracy, and so on and so forth.
The control of the situation has not slipped out of Khomeini's hands, but with the overthrow of the monarchy of the Pahlavis, with the liquidation of this mediaeval monarchy, the revolution in Iran has brought to the fore elements more organized, more radical, more progressive than Khomeini, elements who are operating for a democratic, bourgeois Iran with considerable rights. But we shall see to what extent they will achieve this aim.
These powerful movements in Iran are certainly led by a number of parties, by a number of fronts, which claim to be independent of foreign powers, although this is not the case. The Soviets have worked inside Iran through the «Tudeh» Party, but we do not know what state that party is in. The Chinese, too, under the protection of the Shah, have worked to create their Maoist party which was supposed to help the Shah to stay in power, and in times of danger when the Pahlavi monarchy had been liquidated, it was to come to light as an alleged Marxist-Leninist party. It is said that such a party exists there. Meanwhile Khomeini's party or front seems to be more powerful. There are also pro-Palestinian elements in Iran.
Of course, all these parties and fronts are struggling for position, to create a government in Iran which will defend the interests of a «new», more democratic bourgeoisie, but still a bourgeoisie in fact, which will try to attack the more radical revolutionary people's movements which will want to carry the Iranian revolution further.
As we wrote in our article «The Iranian Working Class Came out on the Battlefield, Overthrew the Shah and Shook the Capitalist World», published in the newspaper «Zëri i popullit», in this great popular uprising we see emerging on the stage great forces which are demanding rights and defining programs for profund transformations in many fields of life.
The Iranian women are taking part in movements and demonstrations. They are demanding equal rights with men and rejecting the veil which Khomeini defends as an emblem of Islam.
Many progressive students are in movement, too.
Thousands of students are holding demonstrations in the university of Tehran, while others are demanding that the army should be an army of the people, that the officers should be chosen from the people. The people's courts in Iran are executing generals, senior officers, officers of the security service and all kinds of despots who served the Shah. In other words, purges are being carried out there, regardless of whether Khomeini likes it or not.
Of course, Iran has to live and its main wealth is oil. Now it has begun to extract oil, but not in the former quantities and, moreover, Iran has begun to raise the prices of oil. The present provisional Iranian government plans and has taken measures to nationalize the foreign companies which exploited the oil in Iran. If it carries out this measure this is something positive.
How that great wealth of this country will be administered and who will manage it is another matter. There will be struggle over it . . .
However, the Iranian people must be made aware that this great wealth they possess should be administered by themselves, in other words, by a new Iranian state and party organization.
We shall see how matters will develop in this direction. For the time being, however, we see that the American government is behaving like a lamb with the present government in Iran, until it can establish positions, if not what it had before, at least better than what it has at the moment, because they are very weak.
Khomeini has declared that he will fight the United States of America, the Soviet Union, or any other power that tries to place Iran under bondage. Of course, in his struggle he cannot break with the foreign capitalist bourgeoisie.
His reliance on one or the other depends on the pressures he will be subjected to. The Iranian people must not permit this reliance to be enslaving.
Likewise, the progressive people of Iran must fight to eradicate the dangerous elements, to eliminate the deep roots of various secret agencies which exist there, a thing which will take a long time, and they must prevent the direct American, Soviet and other secret agencies, disguised as specialists or various allegedly democratic or communist parties, from establishing the influence of the superpowers in that wealthy, but at the same time, poverty-striken country.
The Iranian revolution will have a great influence which will go beyond the borders of that country. In fact, this influence is already being felt in the Emirates of the Persian Gulf as well as in Iraq, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Oman, etc.
But Iran must be vigilant, must take into account the great dangers which might come either from the American imperialists or from the Soviet social-imperialists. The Soviet Union has a long common border with Iran and the population of Iranian Azerbaijan has close links with Soviet Azerbaijan. Thus, Soviet agents will go in and out of Iran to organize sabotage, to incite insurrections, to make demands for autonomy, concessions, etc., etc.
In this situation only a sound, revolutionary, Marxist-Leninist political force, which has the support of the working class and the people, can gradually win ground and resist all those dangers which are threatening Iran and the whole world. I say the whole world, because all this zone of the Middle East is a region fraught with conflicts, much greater than the Balkan conflicts of the last century. All the states of this region are under the influence of foreigners who support their leading circles and incite them to local wars.
MONDAY - APRIL 2, 1979
IRAN HAS BEEN PROCLAIMED A REPUBLIC
Yesterday, the results of the national referendum on turning the country from a monarchy into a republic were declared in Tehran. Ninetyfive per cent of the votes were for the proclamation of the Islamic Republic of Iran. On this occasion Ayatollah Khomeini made a speech in which he pointed out that the vote in the national referendum for the proclamation of the republic had put an end to monarchic rule in Iran.
This is another great victory in the struggle of the Iranian people for social liberation and breaking free from the influence of imperialists.
Events there are advancing in a positive direction.
MONDAY - APRIL 16, 1979
EVERYTHING THAT IS DONE IN THE MIDDLE EAST IS LINKED WITH OIL
(Excerpt concerning Iran)
Soviet social-imperialism is at work in Iran, too, primarily in the ideological terrain, by financing and assisting the revisionist «Tudeh» Party inside and outside the country. It has also set in motion the Kurds who live in Iran, friends of the Soviets in the past, as well as the Turcomans who are demanding autonomy within Ayatollah Khomeini's Islamic Republic. Of course, efforts are being made to patch up all these problems but in the final analysis patches are only patches. The fire is blazing in Iran and benzine is being poured on the flames by the Soviets, as well as by the CIA which, although it suffered a great loss with the liquidation of the Shah, still has bases and deep roots there, so it is waiting for this first storm to blow over, not concerned that a number of people loyal to it are being shot, because it has others which it will try to save. They can play their role later, not in the interests of the Shah, of course, but in the interests of the United States of America in some form of government called bourgeois democracy, but dependent on America.
SATURDAY - MAY 26, 1979
(Excerpt concerning Iran)
We can say that Saudi Arabia is three quarters a supporter of the American imperialists' policy, while up till very recently Iran was entirely at the disposal of the Americans. However, with the overthrow of the Shah as a result of the great popular demonstrations in all the cities of Iran, especially the demonstrations of the oil workers, and the coming to power of Ayatollah Khomeini, the situation in that country changed: Iran was transformed from a country enslaved to the United States of America to a country in revolt against the savage oppression and exploitation by the American, British and other imperialists.
Certainly such a thing does not mean that Iran has become a progressive democratic republic.
No, but the activity of the popular masses gave the retrograde Islamic activity a more or less progressive colour. These masses overthrew the Pahlavi empire and set in motion the revolutionary Islamic courts, which up till now have sentenced to death a number of lackeys and agents of the Shah and the Americans, whose hands were stained with the blood of the Iranian people. Will these courts continue to impose such sentences in Iran? This is not known.
But another and more important question is that the great strikes of the oil workers in Iran have caused a major economic and energy crisis throughout the world, especially in the Western imperialist countries, headed by the United States of America. The situation created in Iran proved that the powerful CIA had underestimated the strength of the people of Iran, which erupted against the desire and without the knowledge of the United States of America. The Americans proved short-sighted in regard to their hegemonic interests and thought that, under their direct domination, the Shah of Iran would exist forever and go on thoroughly exploiting the Iranian people. However, the opposite occurred.
At the moment nothing has been stabilized in Iran yet. Of course, during this period the imperialists and the social-imperialists are manoeuvring with their policies to find ways to cool the tempers, to tame the revolt in the interests of the wealthy classes, to avoid the total liquidation of their agency and to bring to power new people who will more or less redress this great disequilibrium which the Iranian problem has caused them. The fact that the American Senate itself continues to interfere in the internal affairs of Iran, by threatening to take decisions against the trial and execution of the Shah's murderous supporters, proves this very clearly. Meanwhile Ayatollah Khomeini sternly opposes this interference and opposes it by continuing to allow the Islamic courts to do their work.
We can say that the popular forces in Iran are on the move, the objective factor is developing, but the question of the leadership has not yet been decided. The most powerful leadership at present is the Islamic leadership of Ayatollah Khomeini with many tendencies, but still with a certain unity, while in the Bazargan government tendencies to conciliation with the old imperialists can be seen and this conciliation, if it is achieved, of course, will be realized in forms which will differ from those which existed at the time of Riza Shah Pahlavi.
Nevertheless, the uprising of the people of Iran against the feudal monarchy of the Shah has had an influence throughout the world, not only from the economic aspect, which shows how powerful the oil weapon is, a weapon which could make war impossible, because without oil the military machine cannot be set in motion against the peoples, but also from the political aspect.
As a liberation movement, this uprising has created a favourable situation throughout the whole region of the Arab and African Countries and the peoples could take it as an example of how to rise in liberation struggle.
TUESDAY - JUNE 26, 1979
THE SUPERPOWERS SABOTAGE THE TRUE UNITY OF THE ARAB PEOPLES
(Excerpt concerning Iran)
The Soviets are doing a similar thing in Iran, where the Kurds and Azerbaijanis can and do move according to Moscow's instructions. Recently, Ayatollah Khomeini, in a public speech warned the Soviets not to create disturbances in Iran, but these disturbances and intrigues will be continued there, both by the Soviets through their secret agency and by the United States of America through the CIA.
Only a further development of the revolution with bourgeois-democratic features can save Iran from these intrigues...
In other words, the Middle East, the oil zone, is on fire, is a field of mines which could be detonated by the imperialist powers and blow up at any time. The only correct alternative is the true awakening of the Arab peoples in the Middle East.
POGRADEC, MONDAY - JULY 30, 1979
HUA GUOFENG BEGS AYATOLLAH KHOMEINI'S PARDON
According to a report of the Reuter agency, dated July 28, Hua Guofeng has begged Ayatollah Khomeini's pardon over the visit he paid to the Shah last year. It is known that prior to the advent of Hua Guofeng to power, the princesses of Iran, the sisters of the Shah, visited the China of Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai and their visit was returned by Li Xiannian and other main Chinese leaders who went to Iran. At that time Beijing Radio gave great publicity to the close friendship between the Shah and his wife and Mao and Zhou. This, of course, did not surprise us Albanians who had carefully observed China's stands, but it made us indignant. The Chinese considered it a great honour and a major policy matter to maintain «sincere» and friendly relations with the Shah of Iran.
However, scandal followed scandal. With the advent of Hua Guofeng to power, this friendship was so augmented that when that strutting Chinese without a brain in his head on Tito's advice, stopped off in Tehran, after his visit to Rumania and Yugoslavia. He stayed there three whole days, ate, drank, and held intimate talks with the Shah, while hundreds of demonstrators, who were seeking to overthrow Mohammed Riza Pahlavi, the Shah of Iran, were being shot down in the streets of Tehran. Hence, Hua Guofeng, the chairman of «socialist» China, held intimate talks in the palace of the Shahanshah, while SAVAK was slaughtering Iranian patriots and people en masse. However, the Shah fell and Khomeini came to power. What was China to do? Of course, it would eat its words and kiss Khomeini's hand.
It means nothing to the Chinese to commit a volte face, they feel no shame about this, are not worried that today they are with the Shah or Pinochet and tomorrow are with the Ayatollah and a new Allende. Thus, they were bound to beg Ayatollah Khomeini's pardon. In the time of the Shah and the power of SAVAK, the Chinese were able to organize their own agency there which collaborated closely with the CIA. Now these partisans of China cannot be left without support, but if you do not support Ayatollah Khomeini you cannot ensure the existence of your agency in Iran. So China is manoeuvring in this direction, too. According to the Reuter agency, Agha Shahi, the Pakistani presidential adviser who is in Iran on a visit, handed over a message from Chairman Hua Guofeng, in which the latter begged the pardon of Ayatollah Khomeini for the visit he paid to Iran during the regime of the expelled Shah, saying, «I express my sincere feelings for the Islamic Republic of Iran.» According to the Reuter agency, the Chinese leader tried to justify his meeting with the Shah of Iran to Ayatollah Khomeini by saying that he had stopped off in Iran on his return from Yugoslavia to rest after the long trip he had made. After this, we are told, the Iranian state television service pointed out that Ayatollah Khomeini had accepted the Chinese Chairman's apology and stressed that «our country wants to have friendly relations with the Islamic and non-Islamic countries, even though his (Hua Guofeng's) visit was made at a time when the youth of Iran were being drowned in blood. We and the Iranian people will excuse him for this.»
Hence, Chairman Hua is fixing up his connections with the leaders of Iran, with the Islamic countries, with Pakistan and with the Americans. It is self-evident that China is serving as a vanguard of American imperialism and the CIA in Iran. It was not accidental that Hua Guofeng, the leader of a big country, came to support the Shah against the people in revolt precisely in his last days. It is of no importance to the Chinese whether you are a Shia or a Sunni, a Buddhist or a Moslem, a Catholic or a Protestant.
They are all the same to the Chinese, all «cats» are the same so long as they catch «mice».
It is unimportant whether the «cat» is black or white, it is a «cat» for China. Therefore, there is no end to the kowtowing of the Chinese. It is accompanied by incessant smiles from both sides'.
Thus, whoever wants to please the Chinese will have to visit the dentist after meetings and talks with them to get his jaws repaired, because they will certainly be tired from the false smiles at the Chinese. For our part, we did not smile back at the Chinese trickery, but on the contrary, cut their smiles short with a sharp slap in the face.
THURSDAY - DECEMBER 27, 1979
HANDS OFF IRAN!
Theses for an article I gave the theses for another article (Published in the newspaper «Zëri i popullit» on December 30, 1979 under the title «Hands off Iran!») about Iran. This article, which is the third or fourth we have written about events in that country, must have the defence of Iran from the threats of Americans as its object. In other words, in this article we must express our opinion on this problem.
For the content of the article we must take the cue from Carter's statements and the actions of American imperialism which has decided to impose a complete economic blockade on Iran.
Already it has frozen the Iranian assets, both those of the Iranian state and the billions stolen by the Shah, in the American banks and their subsidiaries. Hence, American imperialism is threatening Iran initially with cold war in order to turn it into hot war later. It is self-evident why American imperialism is doing this, because it is receiving heavy blows from the people of Iran and suffering defeat in everything it undertakes.
American imperialism will suffer other defeats if it does not abandon its threats and predatory war. However, American imperialism cannot fail to defend its «empire». This means that it will go on trying to keep control of Iran, that is, of the oil of that country. Hence, it defends the plunder of the Iranian people and defends the executioner of the Iranian people, Shah Pahlavi, who is an agent of American imperialism and at the same time the bloodstained murderer of his own people.
The Iranian people have risen against American imperialism and are waging a just, merciless fight against it. Hence, the fight of the Iranian people is on a correct course and must be supported, while the war which American imperialism is preparing is a predatory war and must be condemned. These things which I pointed out should serve as a background for the article, while we must emphasize that all the other imperialists and the Western capitalist countries and likewise their satellites, like Tito, Deng Xiaoping and company, support American imperialism in its activity, openly or secretly, to a greater or lesser extent; even the Soviet Union gives it direct or indirect support.
In fact, however, the Soviet Union and the United States of America are struggling to divide up this region into their spheres of influence.
Hitherto, Iran has been in the American sphere, while at the present juncture Soviet social-imperialism is trying to take the place of the Americans. On the one hand, it is doing this through secret pressures and open threats, allegedly to defend the independence of Iran and, on the other hand, seeing the threatening situation which American imperialism is creating, it is assembling armed forces in Soviet Azerbaijan, causing disturbances through its secret agency inside Iranian Azerbaijan and Kurdistan, and so on.
Last evening the American Department of State and news agencies reported that the Soviets had landed about 50,000 troops and a number of tanks in Afghanistan, had carried out a coup d'état against the prime minister, Afizullah Amin, who posed as pro-Soviet and, as is known, likewise had come to power through a coup after overthrowing and killing Taraki, who likewise was pro-Soviet. Apparently both the Soviets and the Americans are each playing their own game in this region. In the final account all these things are to the detriment of Iran, where the superpowers are trying to achieve their expansionist aims.
It is clear that the acts of plunder, secret or open, of American imperialism and Soviet socialimperialism in this region, the pressure on Iran, the direct occupation of Afghanistan, are part of the co-ordinated imperialist plots against Irani, the countries of the Persian Gulf, and of their aims to quell the uprisings in the Middle East, that is, in the Arab countries.
In this article we must stress that the struggle of the Iranian people is a liberation struggle against feudalism and imperialism. Therefore, for their own good, the Iranian people should be united against the main enemies that threaten them, American imperialism and Soviet socialimperialism.
We can also mention Khomeini and should say that we are not in agreement with his Islamic idealist philosophy, but we are in agreement with his political stands and his antiimperialist and anti-American struggle and support him in this struggle.
Then we must say that later, after the independence of Iran has been consolidated and the danger which threatens it from American imperialism and Soviet social imperialism has been warded off, the Iranian people should fight for democratic rights, land, bread, and their freedom.
We must point out that the activities of the Americans will cause dangerous disturbances which may lead to world war. Ayatollah Khomeini has declared that the United States of America wants to blockade Iran, a thing that would mean war between them and that this war will be turned into a bloody world war.
Imam Khomeini is right, because if American imperialism attacks Iran, it should be borne in mind that the whole of the Middle East, the whole oil zone, will catch fire and in this war the peoples of those countries cannot fail to defend the Iranian people who are of one faith with them, regardless of the contradictions which the governments of the countries of this region might have amongst themselves. Hence, a war between the Americans and the Iranians in the Middle East will disturb the existing unstable situation built up through intrigues, and the Soviet Union, Britain, France and other countries will be involved in the conflict.
Thus, in case of war, the United States of America will be confronting not only the people of Iran, but also the other peoples of the Persian Gulf and the peoples of the Middle East in general. On the other hand, the Americans' military actions or blockades will certainly encounter opposition from the partners and allies of the United States of America: Japan, Britain, France, Italy and West Germany, which will suffer economic damage because their oil supplies will be cut off. Those countries cannot exist without oil, are unable to wage war without it.
Not even the United States of America could continue a war for long without the oil of the Middle East. If the United States of America turns the cold war against Iran into a hot war it will lose the oil.
We must point out that in Iran the American and the other imperialists have their longstanding secret agencies which will operate against the anti-imperialist popular uprising there and against the students. Therefore, the Iranian people, the working class, the students and peasants must be vigilant and stand together in a block against the external and internal enemies who manoeuvre in a thousand open and secret ways, through pseudo-democratic movements or through plots.
All these plots and pseudo-democratic movements are linked with the foreign imperialists who want to bring back the old regime, their tool and old agent, the Shah, or his men, who will serve them best and guarantee them the oil of Iran.
We must point out that the so-called diplomatic staff of the American embassy held prisoner are nothing but secret agents. Today American diplomacy, Soviet diplomacy or the diplomacy of many other states no longer have the genuine character of a diplomacy and do not apply those principles which are expressed when the ambassadors of those countries present their letters of credentials to the states to which they are accredited; in fact, all of them are agents of the CIA, the FBI, the KGB, etc., and in the countries to which they are accredited they organize networks of spies and conspirators against the freedom, democracy and independence of the peoples of those countries.
Such are the American diplomats who back the Shah and his minions in order to gain the fabulous wealth of Iran.
Ayatollah Khomeini, the students and the Iranian people have the right to hand these people over to the courts to render account for the diversionist activity they have carried out in collaboration with the Shah of Iran.
The bourgeois world describes this just action of the Iranian people as a violation of the international norms which govern the status of diplomats and diplomatic relations, but they forget to say that, in the first place, these diplomats violated the regulations and norms referred to, to the detriment of the Iranian people. Even the Pope, one of the biggest capitalists of the world, threatened Iran from a window in the Vatican, that institution which has spread its sinister spider's web over the whole world, and «prayed» that Khomeini would release the hostages.
However, the Pope of the Vatican never raised his voice when the Americans, through the CIA and the ambassador Henderson, drove tanks over the people of Tehran who overthrew the Shah in the time of Mossadeq.
Of course, the Polish Pope, Wojtyla is in complete agreement with the Polish-American Brzezinski, chief of the National Security Council of the United States of America and the main architect in the preparation of the cold and hot war against Iran.
As we see, however, the people of Iran, the students and Ayatollah Khomeini are taking a brave and just stand, not only against the American imperialist aggressors, but also against all their lackeys who, some under the gown of the priest and some dressed as diplomats and with «letters of recommendation» from their heads of state, are going to Iran to exert pressure in the form of advice or pleas to Ayatollah Khomeini to release the hostages, because he is allegedly violating the diplomatic rights established by the United Nations Organization and the traditions of diplomacy. But it is quite clear and it should be realized that none of these individuals takes the slightest account of the supreme interests of the people of Iran and all the other peoples oppressed by American imperialism, Soviet social-imperialism and world capitalism, but all of them have their own interests, the interests of their cliques who are united with these imperialists in the struggle against the people of Iran and other peoples.
All these individuals who are demanding that Iran take incorrect decisions favourable to the Americans and disadvantageous to its own national interests, have disguised themselves under the mask of «friendship» with Iran, under the mask of alleged democracy and good behaviour.
But there is no good behaviour towards the enemies of the peoples, there can be no justice in diplomatic attitudes, when these are violated by others, by the mightiest or even by the cunning little ones. Imperialism, its tools and actions, must be fought tooth and nail.
THE EVENTS WHICH ARE TAKING PLACE IN THE MOSLEM COUNTRIES MUST BE SEEN IN THE LIGHT OF DIALECTICAL AND HISTORICAL MATERIALISM
(excerpt concerning Iran)
The echo of this anti-feudal, anti-imperialist uprising of the Iranian people which is shaking the economic foundations of imperialism and its ambitions for world hegemony extends as far as Indonesia, but there the movement is weaker than in the countries of Central Asia, the Near and Middle East or even North Africa, where the Islamic religion is more compact and the assets are greater. In those regions, for instance in Iran, there is a progressive awakening of the masses, which for the moment is led generally by religious elements who know how to exploit the sentiments of these peoples for freedom and against oppressive imperialism, the monarchist leaders and rapacious feudal cliques of robbers and murderers, etc., etc. Therefore, we must make a Marxist-Leninist analysis of this situation.
We cannot accept the tales that the bourgeoisrevisionist propaganda, American imperialism and world capitalism are spreading that Ayatollah Khomeini or this one or that in Iran are people who do not understand politics or are just as backward as Imam Ali , Imam Hassan and Imam Hussein were. This is not true. On the contrary, the facts show that people like Khomeini know how to make proper use of the existing movement of these peoples, which, in essence and in fact, is a progressive bourgeois-democratic and anti-imperialist movement.
In regard to Khomeini, he is a religious leader, a dedicated believer and an idealist philosopher.
He may even be a fanatic, but we see that, at the same time, he is in accord and united with the revolutionary spirit of the Iranian people. Khomeini has taken the side of the opponents of the monarchy. The imperialist bourgeoisie, the supporters of the Pahlavi monarchy and other reactionary forces in the world say that he wants to become a monarch himself. Let them say this, but the fact is that the anti-imperialist, anti-colonialist and anti-feudal liberation movement in Iran is in the ascendancy and Khomeini still maintains a good stand in regard to this movement.
What is occurring in Iran might occur also in Pakistan or in the countries of the Arabian Peninsula, it may spark off a revolutionary situation in some other neighbouring country and even in the Soviet Union itself, because socialimperialism and revisionism carry national oppression everywhere and, as a consequence, arouse the national liberation sentiments of the peoples. Socialism and the Marxist-Leninist theory alone provide a just solution to the national question. Today the national rights of nations and peoples have been violated and trampled underfoot in the Soviet Union and wherever American imperialism and international capitalism rule. There is great oppression there, logically, therefore, there will certainly be movement.
We must examine and analyse the present events in Iran as they take place and draw conclusions from them on the basis of the teachings of our Marxist-Leninist theory. In the vanguard of the active forces in the uprising against imperialism and the monarchy in that country, are the religious zealots, the student youth, the workers and intellectuals. So, neither the proletariat nor a genuine Marxist-Leninist party is in the leadership of the movement. On this question we must also bear in mind the fact that we do not really know the strength and the basis of the different political currents in that movement. We know from experience that in our country, too, the working class was not developed, nevertheless, since the objective and subjective factors existed in the conditions of the occupation and the National Liberation War, the Party led the people to victory by basing itself on Marxism-Leninism, which means it put the working class and its vanguard, in other words itself, in the leadership. This is not the case in Iran. In that country there is a Marxist-Leninist party, the Workers and Peasants' Communist Party of Iran, a young party which, has just been formed, but it is still small, untempered, not linked with the working class and the masses, etc., while the revisionist «Tudeh» Party has existed legally and illegally, is now legal again, but is a tool of the Soviet Union. Hiding behind Marxist-Leninist slogans, this party is sabotaging the anti-imperialist revolutionary struggle of the Iranian people and trying to bring Iran into the sphere of influence and under the thraldom of the Soviet Union. That is why the Moslem people of Iran, who have risen in revolution, are not acquainted with Marxism-Leninism either as a theory or a revolutionary practice. The students who are studying at Iran's Moslem universities with great traditions and of the Shia Moslem sect, are both believers and non-believers in religion. In regard to the secular progressive elements there are those who believe in and are fighting for a liberal bourgeois-democratic state, those who believe in a «progressive» capitalist but anti-communist society, and those who still think that the Soviet Union is a socialist country which represents and applies Leninism. This is one of the reasons that genuine Marxism-Leninism has still not won acceptance in Iran, therefore the people there are fighting for liberation from the yoke of American imperialism and from Soviet influence, but under the banner of Islam. This means that the Shia Moslem clergy are in the leadership, in the vanguard of the uprising, but we have no illusions and know that they are for a bourgeois capitalist regime with religious predominance, hence, a theocratic regime.
As to what course the movement against American imperialism and the barbarous compradore monarchy of the Pahlavis will take in the future, this depends mainly on the seething internal forces.
What general definition can be made of these forces?
In the present world situation and at the existing stage of the movement of the peoples for their national and social liberation, the popular revolution in Iran represents a new stage.
Regardless of what others do or say, we must document this stage more carefully and make a critical Marxist-Leninist analysis of it. Iran is a country very rich in oil, hence, has a working class comprised of oil workers and other industrial workers, but also has artisans.
Of Iran's 33 million inhabitants about 17 million are in the countryside and work the land.
They are poverty-stricken, oppressed and exploited to the limit by the mullahs, the religious institutions, the big-landed bourgeoisie in the service of the Pahlavis, by the wealthy mercantile and money-lending bourgeoisie linked with the monarchy. Of the total population of Iran 99 per cent are of the Moslem religion and the majority of the Shia sect.
The Pahlavi regime was one of the most barbarous, the most bloodthirsty, the most exploiting, the most corrupt of the modern world.
It employed bloodshed and terror to suppress any progressive movement, any even mildly liberal demonstration, any protest or strike of workers or students, and any attempt to develop a small-scale, auxiliary subsistance economy.
The savage dictatorship of the Pahlavis was based on the big feudal landowners, the wealthy property-owners that the regime created, the reactionary army and the officer caste which ran it, and on SAVAK, the secret police, which the Shah himself described as «a state within a state». The Pahlavis ruled by means of terror, robbed the people, enriched themselves in scandalous ways, were the personification of moral and political degeneration, were partners with and sold out to British and American and other imperialisms. The Pahlavis had become the most heavily armed gendarmes of the Persian Gulf under the orders of the CIA.
Iran was oppressed, but the people were seething with revolt, although wholesale executions were carried out every day. The ayatollahs who were discontented with the regime began to move. In 1951, Mossadeq, a representative of the bourgeoisie, supported by the mullahs opposed to the Shah, and by the «Tudeh» Party, seized power. In 1953 the Shah was driven out, but his overthrow and departure were not final, because the CIA organized a putsch, overthrew Mossadeq, brought the Shah back to Iran and restored him to the throne. Thus, Iran became the property of the Americans and the Shah and its oil became their powerful weapon.
It is characteristic of the revolt of the Iranian people that, despite the great terror, it was not quelled, but continued spasmodically, in different forms and in different intensities. This revolutionary process steadily built up in quality and overcame the stage of fear of suppression.
Despite the great terror, in 1977 the opposition to the Shah began to be displayed more forcibly, became more open and active. If we follow these trends opposed to the Shah and his regime separately we shall see that they are to some extent autonomous, but have a common strategy. Thus, we see the opposition of Mossadeq's supporters, the resistance of the religious forces, the actions and demonstrations of the students, the stands of intellectuals, officials, writers, poets and artists against the regime expressed at rallies, in the universities and in other public places, etc., and together with all these currents we also see the self-defence and resistance of the working class and the whole oppressed and exploited people. S A V A K attacked mercilessly, but the suppression and executions only added to the anger of the masses. This resistance turned into a permanent activity.
In the same period we see the re-awakening of the political opposition of Mossadeq's supporters in the National Front. One of the elements of this current was Shapour Bakhtiar, who became prime minister on the eve of the overthrow of Shah Pahlavi. This was the last shot of the Shah and the American imperialists against the Iranian anti-imperialist revolution and Khomeini.
In the course of the development of this political opposition, the «Movement for the Liberation of Iran», the «Iran Party», and the «Socialist League of the National Movement of Iran», broke away. The «Movement for the Liberation of Iran», which was headed by Bazargan, who became prime minister after the departure of the Shah, was closer to Khomeini and the other imams.
We must always bear in mind that neither this political opposition, nor the religious opposition to the Pahlavis was united. Some of those who comprised this opposition were against the so-called agrarian reform, against the right of women to vote, etc. This section, which comprised conservative clergy, was steadily losing its influence amongst the masses, who were moving closer to that part of the clergy who openly fought the dictatorship of the Shah on the basis of the Shia principles of the Moslem religion. One of these was Ayatollah Khomeini, who was imprisoned, tortured, imprisoned again, and sent into exile and his son murdered. This enhanced the influence of the imam among the people, in the «Bazaar» (the main market centre of Tehran), hence, amongst the merchants, and also amongst the workers. In the rising tide of agitation and the great demonstrations against the Shah, the masses demanded the return of the Imam to the homeland. The death of his son and of a political personality, Ali Shariat, in mysterious circumstances led to the emergence of the religious elements in the forefront of the clashes and the whole people united with them, especially in Tabriz on February 18-19, 1977, as well as in Tehran, Qum and other Iranian cities. All this testifies to the fighting spirit of the people of Iran. As a result the Pahlavi monarchy was quite incapable of resisting the repeated waves of the onslaught of the insurgent people.
Hence, in this climate of progressive insurgency against feudalism, the monarchy and imperialism, the Marxist-Leninists must analyse the various political trends, the orientations of these trends, the alliances and contradictions between them inside Iran and with the capitalist-revisionist world outside that country.
At present we see an active and militant unity of the uprising against American imperialism and the Shah and, to some extent, also against Soviet social-imperialism, and, at the same time, we also see increased vigilance and opposition towards all other capitalist states, though not so open and active as against the Americans. This situation will certainly undergo evolution. We see that the universities in Iran have become centres of fiery manifestations with both political and religious tendencies, and likewise see that the religious opposition and the political opposition are uniting. Thus, despite the contradictions which exist between them, it seems that the supporters of Mossadeq and those of Khomeini are moving closer together.
In Tabriz, which has an important working class, apart from the oil workers, we can say that this unity has been brought about. Similar things are taking place at Abadan and the other regions where there are oil-fields and refineries.
The Iranian Marxist-Leninists must, in particular, submit the strength and orientations of the working class to a Marxist-Leninist analysis and then their party must base its activity on this analysis, go among the working class, educate it and clarify it politically and ideologically, while tempering itself together with the working class in this revolutionary class struggle which, far from being ended, has only begun and will certainly assume diverse aspects. The revolutionary activity of the working class and the Marxist-Leninist ideology alone must become the factor deciding the correct directions which this anti-imperialist revolution must take. Certainly, in the present situation in Iran much can and must be gained from the revolutionary force of the Iranian working class, by the progressive elements, and especially by the students and the poor and middle peasantry.
The Marxist-Leninists will be committing a mistake if they do not understand the situation created and do not utilize it in the right way, if they come out as anti-religious fighters and thus damage their anti-imperialist and anti-feudal unity with the followers of Ayatollah Khomeini and the followers of Mossadeq's, Bazargan's or others' anti-imperialist bourgeois-democratic parties and movements.
Although anti-religious in their principles, the Iranian Marxist-Leninists must not for the moment wage a struggle against the religious beliefs of the people who have risen in revolt against oppression and are waging a just struggle politically, but are still unformed ideologically and will have to go through a great school in which they will learn. The Marxist-Leninists must teach the people to assess the events that are taking place in the light of dialectical and historical materialism. However, our world outlook cannot be assimilated easily in isolation from the revolutionary drive of the masses or from the anti-imperialist trends that are trying to remain in the leadership and to manoeuvre to prevent the bourgeois-democratic reforms of the revolution. The Iranian Marxist-Leninists and working class must play a major role in those revolutionary movements, having a clear understanding of the moments they are going through; they must not let the revolution die down. The working class and its true Marxist-Leninist vanguard should have no illusions about the «deepgoing» bourgeois-democratic measures and reforms which the Shia clergy or the anti-Shah elements of the old and new national bourgeoisie might carry out. Certainly, if the working class, the poor peasantry and the progressive students, whether believers or non-believers, allow the impetus of the revolution to ebb away, which means that they do not proceed with determination and maturity towards alliances and activities conducive to successive political and socio-economic reforms, then the revolution will stop halfway, the masses will be disillusioned and the exploitation of them will continue in other forms by pseudo-democratic people linked in new alliances with the different imperialists.
These special new revolutionary situations which are developing among the peoples of Islamic religious beliefs must be studied, conclusions must be drawn from them and new forms of struggle, action and alliances must be found.
These revolutionary situations are much more advanced than those in Europe and Asia and, to some degree, even Latin America, where the revolutionary movements have assumed a petrified form, linked with and led by reformist and counter-revolutionary social-democracy and modern revisionism.
For instance, we do not see such revolts of a marked revolutionary political spirit occur in Europe where there is a big and powerful proletariat.
For what reasons? For all those reasons which are known and have to do with the grave counter-revolutionary influence and sabotage of social-democracy and modern revisionism. The question is not that there is no exploitation on our continent, and therefore there are no movements.
No, here, too, there is exploitation and there are movements, but they are of another nature. They are not «very deep-going, Marxist-Leninist revolutionary movements» which are waiting «for the situation to ripen», etc., as the social-democrats, revisionists and other lackeys of the capitalist bourgeoisie describe them. No, the capitalist bourgeoisie itself and its lackeys do not permit such situations to ripen, do not permit such occurrences as are going on at present in the Arab-Moslem countries, where the revolutionary masses rise in struggle and create difficult situations for imperialism, feudalism and the cosmopolitan capitalist bourgeoisie.
Some claim that the Arab peoples and the peoples of the other Moslem countries are moving, because they are «poor»! Indeed, they are poor. But those who say this must admit that they themselves have become bourgeois and that is why they do not rise against oppression and exploitation, while the truth is that capitalism barbarously oppresses and exploits the peoples everywhere, without exception.
It is claimed, also, that in the countries of Islamic religion, the «masses are backward», therefore, they are easily set in motion. This means that those who support this reasoning have degenerated and are not for revolution, because at a time when capitalism is in decay, honest people must be revolutionary and rise in struggle against capitalism, aiming the weapons they posses against it. Here, in Europe, however, we do not see such a thing. On the contrary, we see the «theory» of adaptation to the existing situation being preached.
Political debates are organized all over the capitalist countries. It has become fashionable for the social-democrats, the Christian-democrats, the revisionists and all sorts of other people in these countries to talk about «revolution» and allegedly revolutionary actions, and each of them tries in his own way to confuse and mislead the working masses with these slogans. The «leftists» scream for «revolutionary measures», but immediately set the limits, «explaining» that «revolutionary measures must not be undertaken everywhere and in all fields», but that only «certain changes must be made», that is, a few crumbs must be thrown to the masses, who are demanding radical revolutionary changes, in order to deceive them and to hinder and sabotage the revolutionary drive of the masses.
We must analyse these situations and phe- nomena in theoretical articles or in other forms and with other means of our propaganda on the Marxist-Leninist course, with the aim of explaining the essence of the revolt and uprisings of peoples against imperialism, neo-colonialism and local rulers, of explaining the question of the survival of old religious traditions, etc. This does not rule out our support for liberation movements, because such movements occurred even before the time of Marx, as mentioned above.
To wait until religion is first eliminated and carry out the revolution only after this, is not in favour of the revolution or the peoples.
In the situation today, the people who have risen in revolt and believe in religion are no longer at the stage of consciousness of Spartacus, who rose against the Roman Empire, against the slave-owners, but they are seething with revolt against the barbarous oppression and exploitation and policy of imperialism and social-imperialism.
The slaves' revolt led by Spartacus, as Marx and Engels explain, was progressive, as were the beginnings of Christianity.
In these very important situations we see that the other peoples of Africa have risen, too, but not with the force and revolutionary drive of the Arab peoples, the Iranians, etc. This is another problem which must be examined in order to find the reasons why they, too, do not rise and why they are not inspired to the same level as the peoples that I mentioned. It is true that the African peoples are oppressed, too, indeed, much more oppressed than the Arab peoples, the Iranians and others. Likewise, Marxism has still not spread to the proper extent in Africa, and then there is also the influence of religion, although not on the same scale as in the Moslem countries. Work must be done in Africa to disseminate the Marxist-Leninist theory more extensively and deeply. That is even more virgin terrain, with oppressed peoples, amongst whom the sense of religion is still in an infantile stage.
There are peoples in Africa who still believe in the heavenly powers of the sun, the moon, magic, etc., they have pagan beliefs which have not crystallized into an ideology and a concrete theology such as the Moslem religion, let alone the Christian or Buddhist religions and their sects.
Although there is savage oppression and exploitation in Africa, the movement in this region of the world is developing more slowly. This is because the level of social development in Africa is lower.
If we take these questions and examine them in unity, we shall see that at the present stage of development, Islam as a whole is playing an active role in the anti-imperialist liberation struggles of the Moslem peoples, while in the European countries and some other countries where the Catholic religion operates, preaching the submissive Christian philosophy of «turn the other cheek», its leaders take a reactionary stand and try to hinder the movement, the revolt, the uprising of the masses for national and social liberation. Of course, in those countries the oppressive power of the bourgeoisie and capitalism, social-democracy and modern revisionism is greater, but the Catholic religion, too, serves to suppress the revolutionary spirit of the masses in order to keep the situation in stagnation.
From the stand-point of economic development the Moslem peoples have been held back; as a consequence of colonialist occupation and colonialist and neo-colonialist exploitation in past decades the Moslem religion in those countries was suppressed by the Catholic or Protestant religions which were represented by the foreign invaders, a thing which has not passed without consequences and without resistance, and herein we might find a political and ideological-religious reason for the anti-imperialist revolution of the Moslem peoples.
The question presents itself that we should look at the present stage of development of the Moslem religion as compared with past centuries.
The development of human society has exerted an influence that has made the Moslem religious belief less and less functional. That is, it has been infiltrated by a certain liberalism which is apparent in the fact that, while the Moslem believer truly believes in the Islamic religion, today he is no longer like the believer of the Middle Ages or the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries.
Today the veiled women in the Moslem countries have those same feelings which our veiled women had before Liberation, as for example in Kavaja, (Town in Central Albania.) although, of course, not completely those of women as progressive as ours were. Nevertheless, the feelings of revolt exist deep in their hearts, and are expressed to the extent that public opinion permits. Today the Iranian women are involved in the broad movement of the Iranian people against the Shah and imperialism.
Hence, we see that religious oppression exists in the countries with Moslem populations, too, but the religion itself has undergone a certain evolution, especially in its outward manifestations.
Let me make this quite clear, religion has not disappeared in those countries, but a time has come in which the spirit of revolt, on the one hand, and the liberalization of the religion, on the other, are impelling people who believe in the Islamic dogmas to rise against those who call themselves religious and want to exercise the former norms of the religion in order to suppress the peoples and keep them in poverty. Their struggle against imperialists, whom they continue to call infidels, that is, their enemies, enemies of their religion, is linked precisely with this. These peoples understand that the foreign occupiers are people of Catholic or Protestant beliefs who want to oppress both countries and religions. The westerners call this religious antagonism, which also contains the class antagonism against foreign occupiers, simply a religious struggle, or apply other incorrect denigrating epithets to it. This is how they are treating the liberation struggles of the Moslem peoples of Arab and non-Arab countries in Asia and Africa today and even the liberation struggle of the Irish people, most of whom are Catholics, against the British occupiers who are Protestants. At the same time, we see incorrect manifestations also among the Moslem peoples who have risen in revolt. They, too, say: «The Giaours, unscrupulous people who are against our religion, are oppressing us,» etc.
In this way they link the question of national liberation with the religious question, that is, they see the social and economic oppression which is imposed on them by imperialism as religious oppression. In the future the other Moslem peoples will certainly reach that stage of development which the people of Algeria, Syria and some other countries have reached on these matters.
These struggles lead not only to increased sympathy for the peoples who rise in revolt, but also to unity with them, because they are all Moslems. If a people rise against imperialism and the reactionary chiefs ruling their country, who use religion as a means of oppression, this uprising destroys the sense of religion even among those who believe in it at the moment.
When a people rise in insurrection against oppression, then the revolutionary sentiment is extended and deepened and people reach the stage which makes them think somewhat more clearly about the question of religion. Until yesterday the poor peasant in Iran said only «inshallah!» and comforted himself with this, but now he understands that nothing can be gained through «inshallah!». In the past all these peoples said, «Thus it has been decreed», but now the masses of believers have risen united and come out in the streets, arms in hand, to demand their rights and freedom. And certainly, when they demand to take the land, the peasants in those countries will undoubtedly have to do battle for the great possessions of the religious institutions, that is, with the clergy. That is why the sinister forces of reaction are making such a great fuss about the fanatical aspect, about the question of putting the women back under the veil, etc., etc., because they are trying to discredit the Iranian revolution, because imperialism and world capitalism have a colossal support in religion.
This is how matters stand with the Vatican, too, with the policy of that great centre of the most reactionary world obscurantism, with the mentality and outlook of Catholics. But the revolution disperses the religious fog. This will certainly occur with the Arab peoples, with the other Moslem peoples, who are rising in insurrection, and with the peoples of other faiths, that is, there will be progress towards the disappearance, the elimination of religious beliefs and the religious leadership. This is a major problem.
Here we are talking about whole peoples who are rising in revolt in the Moslem countries, whether Arab or otherwise. There are no such movements in Europe. On this continent socialdemocratic reformist parties and forces operate.
The number of Marxist-Leninist parties here is still small, while there are big revisionist parties, which operate contrary to people's interests and sentiments, have lost credibility among the masses, and support capitalism, imperialism and social- imperialism. The Moslem peoples of the Arab and non-Arab countries trust neither the American imperialists nor the Soviet social-imperialists, because they represent great powers which are struggling to oppress and plunder the Moslem peoples; also, as Moslems they put no trust in the religious beliefs of those powers.
As a result, the uprising which is developing in Iran and Afghanistan is bound to have consequences throughout the Moslem world. Hence, if the Marxist-Leninist groups, our comrades in these and other countries of this region properly understand the problems emerging from the events in Iran, Afghanistan and other Moslem countries, then all the possibilities exist for them to do much work. However, they must work cautiously there. In those countries religion cannot be eliminated with directives, extremist slogans or erroneous analyses. In order to find the truth we must analyse the activity of those forces in the actual circumstances, because many things, true and false, are being said about them, as is occurring with Ayatollah Khomeini, too.
True, he is religious, but regardless of this, analysis must be made of his anti-imperialist attitudes and actions, which, willy-nilly, bring grist to the mill of the revolution.
This whole development of events is very interesting. Here the question of religion is entangled with political issues, in the sympathy and solidarity between peoples. What I mean is that if the leadership of a certain country were to rise against the revolt of the Iranian people, then it would lose its political positions within the country and the people would rise in opposition, accuse the government of links with the United States of America, with the «giaours», because they are against Islam. This is because these peoples see Islam as progressive, while the United States represents that force which oppresses them, not only from the social aspect but also from the spiritual aspect. That is why we see that none of these countries is coming out openly to condemn the events in Iran.
Another obstacle which reaction is using to sabotage the revolution of the Iranian people is that of inciting feuds and raising the question of national minorities. Reaction is inciting the national sentiments in Azerbaijan, inciting the Kurds, etc., etc., in order to weaken this great anti-imperialist and «pro-Moslem» uprising of the Iranian people. The incitement of national sentiments has been and is a weapon in the hands of imperialism and social-imperialism and all reaction to sabotage the anti-imperialist and national liberation wars. Therefore, the thesis of our Party that the question of settling the problems of national minorities is not a major problem at present, is correct. Now the Kurds, the Tadjiks, the Azerbaijanis and others ought to rise in struggle against imperialism and its lackeys and, if possible, rise according to the teachings and inspiration of Marxism-Leninism. The Kurds, the Tadjiks and the Azerbaijanis who live in the Soviet Union and are oppressed and enslaved today, must rise, first of all, against Russian social-imperialism.
In broad outline this is how the situation in these regions presents itself and these are some of the problems which emerge. The events will certainly develop further. Our task is to analyse these situations and events which are taking place in the Moslem world, using the Marxist-Leninist theory as the basis, and to define our stands so that they assist a correct understanding of these events, and thus, make our contribution to the successful development of the people's revolutionary movement.
WEDNESDAY - APRIL 9, 1980
WE MUST DEFEND THE JUST ANTI-IMPERIALIST STRUGGLE OF THE IRANIAN PEOPLE
I talked with Comrade Ramiz about an editorial article in defence of Iran. («The Iranian People Resolutely Reject the New Threats of American Imperialism». «Zëri i popullit», April 13, 1980) In it we should expose and condemn the coercive measures which the United States of America has taken and which were announced by Carter personally, should condemn the preparations American imperialism is making for military aggression and try to arouse world opinion in defence of Iran. The anti-Iranian coalition which Carter advocates should be smashed. We should point out that the entire blame for the Iranian crisis falls on American imperialism, its agent, Shah Pahlavi, the plots of the CIA and the contradictions between the United States of America and the Soviet Union.
The objective of the two superpowers is oil.
The Iranian people must use this powerful weapon to smash the plans of American imperialism and those who will follow Carter in the struggle against Iran. In the article we should also expose the Soviet pseudo-defence of Iran.
We should point out that through its demagogy the Soviet Union is exacerbating the situation and preparing the intervention, attempting through this pseudo-defence to cover up its own crime against Afghanistan. The thesis that secret agreements exist between the United States of America and the Soviet Union to stabilize their spheres of influence in this region cannot be rejected. In the article we should stress the need for strengthening the unity of the Iranian people in the face of the threat from outside, should stress the national moment which demands this unity in order to emerge with success from the struggle against the American imperialists and the Soviet social imperialists. We should cite the example of the stand of our country against the threats, blackmail and blockades of enemies. We have been able to smash them all and advance; hence Iran, too, will triumph.
SUNDAY - APRIL 27, 1980
CARTER'S GANGSTER ACT WHICH SUFFERED IGNOMINIOUS DEFEAT
The barbarous American operation with commandos landing in Iran (Reference is to the air operation in Tabas) to rescue the gang of agents caught in that nest of spies in Tehran, which is called the American embassy, failed ignominiously. This gangster act covered American imperialism and the president of the United States of America, Jimmy Carter, with the disgrace of another scandal.
In a televised speech which he made two days ago, Carter admitted that the preparations for the operation had begun in November 1979 and that he, personally, took full responsibility for ordering the abandonment of the project when it failed, because some of the aeroplanes and helicopters collided or suffered mechanical breakdowns. Carter announced that 8 officers from the crews of the aircraft were killed, some tens of others were wounded, while the remainder were withdrawn. And he expressed his condolences to the families of the dead, praising the bandits as heroes. Jimmy Carter said these things and covered himself with shame.
This gangster act discredited one of the biggest powers in the world, with the most sophisticated equipment, the American military machine, and showed the weakness and decay of the United States of America. The American people have been shocked and Carter, this «Hamlet of the White House», as Andre Fontaine called him in a recent article in the newspaper «Le Monde», who wanted to prove himself a «lion», is being shunned even by his friends.
This barbarous act is being denounced throughout the world, not only by the peoples, but also by the allies of the United States of America who, like rats abandoning a sinking ship, are finding a thousand and one excuses to throw off the American yoke, by accusing Carter of not informing them in advance. Thus, they are washing their hands like Pontius Pilate. Only the prime minister of Britain, Thatcher, and Trudeau of Canada praised Carter's tragic «valour». In fact the capitalist world, wallowing in great confusion, in doubt and fear about the American defence and desperately worried about the energy crisis, especially the cutting off of Iranian oil supplies, is trying to stick «the broken pieces together». For their part the Soviet aggressors are rubbing their hands in glee. They think that the American intervention and the failure of the operation will overshadow their aggression in Afghanistan. However, both the United States of America and the Soviet Union are imperialist aggressors. The actions of both of them are aggression. That of the Soviets was carried out and is suffering defeat, while this of the Americans was aborted as soon as it began, although it could be repeated some time later. The imperialists are arrogant, war-mongering gangsters, they will never renounce such barbarous acts, therefore we must fight them and unmask them to the end.
The American aggression against Iran, like the Soviet aggression against Afghanistan and the Chinese aggression against Vietnam, will have permanent consequences in the international arena. They are clear signs which forewarn of anew imperialist world war.
Therefore we must be very vigilant, must strengthen our economy, defence and unity and our proletarian discipline in our work everywhere.
We must be strong within the country, but in the international arena, too, through our just stands, we must try to extend the circle of friends and peoples in favour of our socialist country. We must attack, attack and go on attacking the most ferocious enemies of the peoples, American imperialism, Soviet social-imperialism, Chinese social-imperialism, the various revisionists and the whole of world capitalism.
I recommended that an article should be written for «Zëri i popullit» («Down with the Fascist American Aggression against Iran», «Zëri i popullit», April, 29, 1980) in which, among other things, we should demonstrate the falsity of the arguments of the Americans and their friends who are giving all sorts of excuses for the catastrophic defeat of the aggressive. American operation.
First, it should be said that the excuses which Carter gave are fabricated and false. No one can swallow the tale that the biggest aggressive force in the world, with the most sophisticated armaments, suffered the breakdown of one helicopter, then a second, and a third, and a fifth . . . , all this is just to save the face of the authors of the aggression. How is it possible that such an operation, prepared intensively over a period of a hundred days, suffered a Waterloo?
Moreover, some of the bandits who escaped were withdrawn in panic, leaving the dead American officers in the hot sands of Iran as food for the crows, and the burned out aircraft on the plain of Tabas. Carter admitted that he gave the order to stop the operation, that is, the withdrawal of the commandos in panic, allegedly because of mechanical defects. The failure, the withdrawal in panic, and the political catastrophe for the United States of America are true, all the rest is false. Second, the other version alleging that the Soviets confused the Americans' communications by means of satellites is not true, either. Such a thing could be done, but not against the Americans, who are quite as well acquainted as the Soviets with these means, therefore there can be no doubt that the Americans had taken measures in advance against the possibility of such action by the Soviets. The precise order for the hasty withdrawal reached the aircraft — why was this order not confused by the Soviets? So that version doesn't hold water either.
Third, there is a basis for the supposition that the Soviets, observing these moves of the Americans, left them till they were committed to the action at Tabas and immediately issued the ultimatum that they must cease the operation and withdraw within a record time, certainly within a matter of hours, otherwise the Soviets would intervene with their troops, allegedly to save Iran, in other words, they would occupy that country, just as they did with Afghanistan.
In this way the Soviets avenged the slap in the face which the Khrushchevites received 18 years earlier. (In November 1962, at the time of the Caribbean crisis, the Soviet revisionists, under the pressure and threats of American imperialists, were compelled to withdraw their missiles from Cuba and allow the American warships to control this operation on the high seas). At that time the Soviet revisionists were covered with shame, this time the American imperialists were covered with shame. Like Khrushchev in the past, Carter ran away in panic with his tail between his legs. Possibly the Soviet Union was bluffing, but it had the possibility to invade Iran, because it had the troops and supplies deployed on the border of Iran, just as it had in Afghanistan.
Carter had not taken account of the Soviet factor. He had not prepared for a large-scale confrontation which would lead to an imperialist world war. He had reckoned that the operation would be carried out at lightning speed, but the Soviet social-imperialists did not allow him to act in this way. He kept the aggressive operation secret from the Senate, from his closest collaborators and also from the NATO allies. If we accept this version, the Soviet Union discovered the plan and ensured its defeat without any publicity. Carter himself made all the fuss about it. He, personally, announced the failure, the panic, the distrust which the failure of the operation caused and the discredit to the United States of America, which are on the agenda today. Carter himself worked in favour of the Soviets who are having a great deal to say about the failure of the American aggression, because this has drowned out the clamour about the Afghan problem and all the other vile deeds of the Soviet aggressors.
Fourth, one more supposition: the Americans may have landed a big group of troops in Iran and left them there with the task of dispersing through the country and assembling later, together with the agents the Americans have in that country and in Tehran in order to spark off a civil war. Carter may have preferred to accept a great temporary disgrace in order to score another greater victory later, on the eve of the presidential elections. This action could be considered as a feint leading to another greater action in the future. Time will reveal which version is true.
The Iranians must be very vigilant. The peoples likewise must be very vigilant and must fight the American, Soviet, Chinese and other imperialist bandits. In this dangerous situation the world crisis is growing deeper and there will certainly be disagreements between the Americans and their NATO allies. The Chinese could make a 90 degree-turn towards the Soviets, simultaneously with the 90-degree turn they have made towards the Americans and thus take the positions of Titoism. The contradictions between their enemies are a victory for the peoples, therefore we must deepen these contradictions, expose them and take advantage of them and help the peoples to win their freedom and genuine independence and foil the preparations for war which are being made by the Soviets, the Americans and world capital.
THURSDAY - JANUARY 22, 1981
A HEAVY BLOW TO AMERICAN ARROGANCE
The news agencies are again carrying reports of a new event with grave effects for the authority of the United States of America in the international arena. The Iranian government released the 52 hostages whom the people and revolutionaries of Tehran captured in the American embassy on November 4, 1979. They comprise diplomats of various ranks, technicians and other employees as well as the guards from the United States marines who had been charged with the task of defending their embassy in Tehran. They were held prisoner and interrogated for 444 days, regardless of the many political and economic pressures and the blackmail and threats of military intervention made by the government in Washington.
The staff of the American embassy in Tehran were taken prisoner because, contrary to and in violation of the different international laws and conventions, they had engaged in illegal the Iranian people. The embassy itself had been turned into a dangerous centre of espionage and subversion by agents of the CIA. In 1953 it organized and, with the aid of supporters of the Shah, carried out the military coup which overthrew the Mossadeq government and sabotaged the Iranian people's struggle against the Shah and the American imperialists.
In this centre of hardened CIA agents the Iranians captured a large number of compromising documents about the activity of American imperialism in organizing sabotage and plots, not only in Iran, but also in other countries in the oil-bearing zone of the Middle East.
The capture and holding under arrest for a long period of these American diplomat-spies by the Iranian people was a serious blow to the political-economic and military despotism and arrogance of the United States of America. It had very great repercussions throughout the world.
The United States of America was infuriated and made every effort to get out of the ignominious situation in which it was placed as painlessly as possible, but it could not do a thing. In the end it was obliged to accept the onerous but just conditions laid down by the Iranian Majlis (parliament) for the release of the hostages, concretely: lifting the freeze on Iranian assets deposited in the United States of America; placing all the assets which belonged to Iran at the disposal of Iran; recognition of the fact that the wealth of the former Shah and his relatives belongs to the Iranian people, etc.
Apart from this, in the communique published by the Iranian government about the release of the hostages, all the political and military intervention of the American imperialists and the bombastic threats of President Reagan were firmly denounced once again.
The release of the American hostages after the government of the United States was forced into accepting the conditions laid down by the Iranian Majlis constitutes another victory of the Iranian people in their revolution against the feudal monarchy of the Pahlavis and imperialism.
It shows that they are a valiant people, determined and ready to deal further blows at the American imperialists and all other imperialists who try to hinder them on their course towards a truly free and independent Iran.
This act of the Iranian government and people merits congratulations, and we shall offer our congratulations through the press, describing it as a splendid example which shows that no imperialist or social-imperialist power, however big or heavily armed, can impose itself on and conquer the will of peoples for freedom and independence.
MONDAY - AUGUST 10, 1981
ON THE MIDDLE EAST, ON THE STRUGGLE OF THE ARAB PEOPLES
(excerpt concerning Iran:)
In the chapter on the international situation in the report to the 8th Party Congress we must certainly devote as much space as the conditions allow to events which are connected with the Middle East. Amongst other things we must point out:
2) The revolution of the Iranian people against the feudal monarchy of the Pahlavis and its patron, American imperialism, is a heavy blow to imperialism in general. It swept away the Shah and his mediaeval regime and threw out his American patrons. The United States of America is incapable of repairing this major political defeat which it suffered, either in diplomatic ways, through economic blackmail, or even through military intervention.
— In Iran, American imperialism lost one of the most important sources of oil, the colossal profits it had from this source as well as the trust which the Arab «allies» of the Persian Gulf had in it as an invincible protector.
WEDNESDAY - FEBRUARY 10, 1982
THE THIRD ANNIVERSARY OF THE TRIUMPH OF THE IRANIAN PEOPLE'S REVOLUTION
Tomorrow the Iranian people will celebrate the third anniversary of the triumph of their revolution against the blood-thirsty mediaeval regime of the Shahanshah, Mohammed Pahlavi, and his detested patron, American imperialism.
Three years of stern battles and powerful resistance against the savage pressure of American imperialism, Soviet social-imperialism and other reactionary forces. Three years of stern battles also against the supporters of the Shah and foreign agents within Iran.
The anti-imperialist struggle and resistance of the Iranian people deserves praise and support.
We shall write about the third anniversary of this anti-imperialist revolution, will congratulate the Iranian people on this outstanding event and wish them success in their work and struggle for the development and progress of their country and for their national freedom and independence against the plots of the superpowers.
On the Iraq-Iran war
The Iraqi rulers began the war against Iran from fear of the influence in their country of the Iranian people's revolution against the Shah and his patrons, the American imperialists, and also with the incitement of the Soviet social-imperialists, the American imperialists and Arab reaction in order to overthrow the new Iranian regime. It seems to me that Saddam Hussain and his clique thought that this war would be over very quickly and that the Iranians would soon surrender on account of the state of their army after the revolution, allowing the occupation of the rich oil fields near the border, in Khuzestan and elsewhere. But it did not turn out like that. The Iranian army withstood the initial attacks of the Iraqi army, launched counter-attacks which liberated the border zones occupied by the Iraqis, and continued to drive deeper into Iraq.
The war has dragged on for three years with heavy fighting and bloodshed, sometimes more quietly, sometimes simply with attacks with artillery, rockets and aerial bombing, the latter especially from the Iraqi side. Already the war has caused very great losses of human life and material damage which is estimated at several tens of billions of dollars on each side.
The aims for which Iraq began the war have not been achieved and Saddam Hussain has several times sought mediation to end it, but without rendering account for his deeds and without assuming moral and material responsibility for the damage which has been inflicted on the Iranian people. Quite rightly the Iranians have not accepted this manoeuvre. However, those who incited this war and who foster it with arms supplies are also opposed to the ending of the Iraqi-Iranian war.
Who are those who want to prolong this war endlessly? They are the Soviet social-imperialists, the main suppliers of Iraq with all types of the most modern weapons; they are the American imperialists who, by means of Iraq, want to carry out the counter-revolution in Iran, to overthrow the present regime and re-install the barbarous Pahlavi regime, to regain control of the great oil wealth of Iran and the fabulous privileges which they enjoyed only a few years ago; they are the arms monopolies of certain other imperialist countries, such as France, Britain, etc. which sell Iraq supersonic aircraft, missiles and chemical weapons;
they are the Israelis who want the Arabs to chop each other to pieces. Finally the Arab reactionaries, who are scared to death of the revolutionary spirit and progressive movements of the Palestinian people, the Iranian people and any other people in this region, also want to keep it going.
This year the conflict not only continued, but assumed more extensive proportions and became more bitter. Iraq has hit and is hitting inhabited centres and cities outside the war zone and especially a number of oil fields and the refineries at Abadan, Kharg Island, Bandar-Khomeini and elsewhere, employing modern means of warfare, including supersonic aircraft, missiles and modern warships which it has received from the Soviet social-imperialists and the other imperialists. On these occasions the Iranian government has declared officially that if the imperialist powers continue to assist the regime of Saddam Hussain and enable it to attack the Iranian people and their property with such means, it will be obliged to take measures to close the Strait of Hormuz and stop the passage of oil tankers from the Persian Gulf to the high seas.
Closing the Strait of Hormuz would mean that the western capitalist countries, including the United States of America, would be deprived of 40-45% of the oil needed to keep their industry going. Therefore they have all ganged up against and increased their pressure on Iran. Indeed, the United States of America has threatened armed intervention. To this end some time ago the Americans deployed a big naval fleet in the Gulf of Oman as well as other special troops and means for rapid intervention in the Persian Gulf zone. Regardless of these pressures, the Iranian government is maintaining a firm stand in defence of the interests of the Iranian people and resolutely opposing the anti-Iranian policy of the two superpowers.
The prospects for putting an end to this war are gloomy and its prolongation increases the possibility of military intervention by the superpowers at various strategic points of the Persian Gulf, increases the dangers of even greater flareups and complications in this region of the world and further exacerbates the Middle East crisis.