ENGLISH

 

NATIONAL LIBERATION WAR AND THE REASONS FOR ITS TRIUMPH

(excerpt from "History of the Party of Labour of Albania!, pages 174 - 181)



The National Liberation War against the Italian and German invaders as well as against the traitors, which continued for more than five and a half years, is the most heroic and triumphant war the Albanians have waged throughout their history.

The one-million Albanian people tied down more than 15 Italian and German divisions and put out of action some 70,000 enemies killed, wounded or captured. As one of the most active participants of the anti-fascist world coalition, relative to the size of its territory and its population, Albania gave a valuable contribution to the historic victory over fascism. It bore a very heavy burden on its shoulders. During the Second World War on the 28,000 sq. kilometres of Albanian territory there trod about 700,000 fascist soldiers who caused enormous damage and devastation. Albania was one of the countries that suffered the heaviest losses in human lives and, particularly, in material values during the Second World War.

But the heroic efforts made, the blood shed and the huge losses suffered by the Albanian people in the war, were crowned with absolute victory over their external and internal enemies.

On November 29, 1944, with the complete liberation of the country and the triumph of the people’s revolution, fascist domination in Albania came to an end. At the same time, all dependence on the imperialist great powers was done away with, and all enslaving links and relations with these powers were severed; the Albanian people won their full national independence; likewise, the political domination of landlords and the bourgeoisie was overthrown. Albania broke away for ever from the world capitalist system.

This was the greatest victory ever achieved by the Albanian people throughout their entire history.

The Anti-fascist National Liberation War remained to the very last an anti-imperialist and democratic revolution. However, within its framework, elements of the socialist revolution evolved as well, such as the divestment of the bourgeoisie of political power, the establishment of the leadership of the Communist Party as the sole leadership in the new Albanian state, and so on. This came about as a consequence of the continual intensification of the struggle against the principal exploiting classes of the country and the combination of this struggle with the war against the invaders, a thing which still further enhanced the revolutionary character of the National Liberation War.

The Communist Party did not encourage the sharpening of the class struggle within the country, did not issue slogans for struggle against the landlords, clan chieftains and the bourgeoisie; to the end it directed its main blows against the fascist invaders. The class struggle was exacerbated by the open treachery of the exploiting classes.

The political organizations which represented these classes such as the Balli Kombëtar, the Legaliteti, etc., were crushed by the National Liberation Army only because they placed themselves at the service of the fascist invaders. Through their undisguised anti-national and anti-people stand, the former ruling classes lost any right to participate in the political power.

The new political power which was established in Albania even before the National Liberation War had ended, was entirely in the hands of the democratic revolutionary forces with the Communist Party as their sole leader. During the war this power did not consist simply of a democratic dictatorship of revolutionary forces, but was a power which contained within itself rapidly developing elements of the dictatorship of the proletariat.

With the historic victory in the National Liberation War the revolution had been carried out only in the political field.

The economic and social problems of the democratic, antiimperialist revolution remained to be solved after the war.

The main motive social forces in the Anti-fascist National Liberation War were the working class and the poor and middle peasantry. The urban petty and middle bourgeoisie also took part in the war.


The working class played the leading role in the National Liberation War. It played this role through the Communist Party of Albania.


The Albanian working class was small in numbers, dispersed, not yet formed as an industrial proletariat, but it was the most progressive class, which had the future before it.

Above all, no other class in the country succeeded in forming a party with a sound organization, with a correct policy built on scientific foundations, as the working class had done in creating its own Party.

Both in the leading organs of the National Liberation War and in the composition of the Party, the number of workers was small. Howewer, this did not prevent the working class from fulfilling its leading role in this war. Although a good number of its members came from the petty bourgeoisie, the Communist Party of Albania educated them, especially those from the ranks of the peasantry, in a profound proletarian revolutionary spirit, imbuing them with a rare determination to defend the interests of the proletariat, of socialism. In the concrete circumstances, these interests were fused and became one with the interests of the National Liberation War, with the interests of the entire people and the enslaved Albanian nation.


The peasantry became the well-spring and the main armed force of the National Liberation War, the soundest support of the working class and of the Communist Party of Albania.


The Albanian peasantry constituted the overwhelming majority of the population. It is true that it was backward from the economic and cultural standpoint, but if preserved in its bosom great revolutionary capacities developed through its unremitting struggle for freedom and for land, against the oppression and exploitation of landlords and usurers, against the former anti-people regimes and, particularly, against foreign rulers. The peasantry, more than any other class or social stratum in Albania, was endowed with sound patriotic fighting traditions. Taking all these things into account, the Communist Party made a very correct assessment of the decisive role of the peasantry in the war.


«In the conditions of our country, the war would be won by that class which had the peasantry with it,» (Enver Hoxha, Works, vol. 17, p. 434, Alb. ed.)

said Comrade Enver Hoxha.


The peasantry accepted the program and the leadership of the CPA after having been convinced by its own experience that this was the only political organization for resolute war against the invaders, which matched its words with deeds, capable of ensuring victory over the fascist invaders and traitors and of realizing the dreams of the peasants for freedom and land. Under the leadership of the Party, the peasantry displayed great patriotism and heroism.


All through the period of the National Liberation War the Communist Party upheld the slogan of the mobilization of all the peasants without class discrimination. However, the well-to-do peasants, the village gentry as a class, did not accept the program and the leadership of the CPA. In general, they aligned themselves with the traitor organizations of the bourgeoisie and landlords, with the Balli Kombëtar and the Legaliteti, and became their support in the villages, hoping thus to be able to preserve their privileges after the war.


The urban petty and middle bourgeoisie took part in the National Liberation War without the intermediary of a political party of their own,


just like the peasantry. They did not and could not create a political party of their own, because they were too heterogeneous and economically powerless and, in particular, because they lacked determination, maturity and experience in the political struggle. For this reason, they were unable to play any leading role in the National Liberation War. They accepted the program of the Communist Party, because they saw that this program expressed their immediate political demands.

The petty bourgeoisie which constituted the vast majority of the urban population, though in appearance none too resolute or prepared to make sacrifices, almost entirely joined the National Liberation War and displayed outstanding patriotism.

Many of them linked themselves closely with the Communist Party.

The middle bourgeoisie displayed great vacillations. Among them there were tendencies to compromise with the invaders.

However, finding themselves in the grip of occupation laws, under the pressure of foreign capital and under the influence of the traditional patriotism of the Albanian people, most of them opposed the occupation regime and took part in the antifascist war, but did not display any great activity. Only a few of them sided with the invaders, by joining the ranks of the Balli Kombëtar and the Legaliteti.

In general, the Albanian intellectuals, the majority of whom came from the upper and middle strata of the population, proved to be patriots and anti-fascists. The more progressive of them were distinguished for their patriotism, for their resoluteness and profound revolutionary spirit. They embraced the line of the Communist Party and strove to carry it out.

Only a small number of intellectuals imbued with the fascist bourgeois ideology aligned themselves with the invaders. They served as the ideologists of the Balli Kombëtar and the Legaliteti.


The most active force of the National Liberation War were the youth.


They stood in the forefront of the war against the invaders and traitors in the towns, the villages, and in the people’s army.

The vast majority of these young men and women stood out for their lofty sentiments of patriotism and, at the same time, for their profoundly revolutionary progressive spirit.

They aligned themselves closely with the Communist Party and became ardent fighters for the great ideas of Marxism- Leninism.

The first to join the liberation struggle were the worker and school youth of the cities.

The school youth came mainly from the ranks of the middle and petty bourgeoisie of the towns. Together with the worker youth and resolutely fighting in the ranks of the Communist Youth Organization, they made an important contribution to the propagation of the line of the CPA among the masses of the people. At the same time, they acted as intermediaries in exerting the influence of the Party on the petty and middle bourgeoisie of the cities.

But the bulk of the anti-fascist youth came from the peasantry. Next after the city youth they hurled themselves into the war with rare courage and revolutionary determination.

The young peasants made up the majority in the National Liberation Army.


The Albanian women played a major role in the antifascist war.


They took part in this war on a scale unprecedented in the former liberation wars. The Albanian women embraced the line of the Communist Party and fought vigorously side by side with their menfolk for its application, because in this line they found not only the sure road to the national and social liberation of the people, but also the road to winning equal rights with men, to free themselves from all the fetters of the past that held them in bondage.


The great victory of the Anti-fascist National Liberation War was achieved, first and foremost, through the selfsacrifice and lofty heroism displayed by the Albanian people at war.


Never before had they been so united, so resolute and so sure of victory as in the war against the Italian and German invaders and traitors. Never before had they been so deeply conscious of the objectives of the war, nor so willing to make sacrifices and undergo privations for the sake of victory.

During the National Liberation War the creative capacity of the masses of the people in the political and military life of the country revealed itself with all its force. Their inexhaustible strength and great capability were demonstrated in the fire of fierce battles. From the flesh and blood of the people, from the ranks of ordinary folk, workers, peasants, patriotic intellectuals, emerged the wonderful fighters and leaders of the masses, commanders and commissars, members of councils and ministers. These men and women of the people, often with inadequate schooling, excelled in ability and valour and defeated the enemy generals and officers from military academies and the professional politicians of the former landlord-bourgeois regime.


«Our liberation war,» wrote Comrade Enver Hoxha on the eve of Liberation, «placed the people at the head, and herein lies the reason for the victory.» (Enver Hoxha, The historic decisions of the 2nd Meeting of the ANLC. November 1944, Works, vol. 2, p. 375, Alb. ed.)


Through the heroic war they waged, the Albanian people liberated the Homeland and themselves.

The brilliant patriotic and fighting traditions, the rich experience which the Albanian people had acquired through the centuries in their struggle for freedom and independence, which were further developed and reinforced in the National Liberation War, played a very important role in the achievement of victory.


The Communist Party of Albania was the inspirer, organizer and leader of the Anti-fascist National Liberation War, the architect of victory.


In the former liberation wars the Albanian people had not. succeeded in creating a monolithic, consistent leadership.

This was the primary reason why they had been unable to achieve their complete freedom and independence in the past, and why the fruits of their efforts had been seized by the imperialists, the feudal lords and the bourgeoisie of the country.

But from their struggles, from their suffering and misery, they had learned the great lesson that without a revolutionary leadership, their bloodshed and toil could not bring them final victory. With the founding of the Communist Party of Albania, which was born, grew up and was tempered in the war, the people’s dream of a leadership became a reality. Emerging from the bosom of the Albanian people, this Marxist-Leninist Party inherited from them magnificent patriotic traditions and a rich experience in war. It knew how to gather and develop these traditions and this experience, to give them profoundly revolutionary substance and apply them in practice in order to secure freedom and national independence and bring about the victory of the revolution.

The Communist Party worked out a correct policy based on the fundamental Marxist-Leninist principles and on the objective internal and external conditions, a policy which directly responded to the pressing political demands and fundamental interests of the people, the Homeland and socialism, and applied it consistently, resolutely and with revolutionary courage.

It was the Party that implanted among the masses such a high consciousness of the objectives of the war and of the correctness of its policy. It was the Party which discovered, developed and employed in the war against fascism all the energies and creative abilities of the masses of the people.

The masses were convinced by their own experience that the Communist Party was the real champion of their interests and the interests of the Albanian nation, the loyal and consistent fighter for national independence, liberty, democracy and the land.

With rare mastery the Communist Party solved three tasks which were the key to victory: the union of the broad masses in the National Liberation Front; the organization of the general uprising, the arming of the people, the creation of the regular National Liberation Army; the destruction of the state power of the occupiers, the landlords and the bourgeoisie, the organization and establishment of the state power of people’s democracy.

The Party secured many powerful foreign allies for the people whom it educated in the spirit of proletarian internationalism, of fraternal friendship with all the peoples who fought against fascism. Toward the foreign allies it pursued a correct policy built on revolutionary principles. It taught the people to differentiate between them and to link their war, first and foremost, with the Great Patriotic War of the Soviet Union. At no time did the Party allow any of the allies to interfere in the internal political and military affairs of our country. It foiled the plan of Anglo-American imperialist reaction which attempted to prevent the victory of the revolution and to establish its own control of Albania. While maintaining a sincere stand toward all allies and properly appreciating the assistance and support from abroad, the Party never expected others to bring freedom to the Albanian people. It resolutely applied the principle of self-reliance, and taught the people to realize clearly that liberty is snot granted but is won with bloodshed, with many hardships and sacrifices.

The Communist Party of Albania was born, grew up and proved itself a leader of unrivalled ability and authority in the revolutionary war against the invaders and traitors. It did not wait to learn the Marxist-Leninist theory before throwing itself into the struggle. It learned this theory and applied it faithfully and in a creative manner in the heat of battle, in complicated situations.


The decisive external factor of the historic victory of the Albanian people was the Great Patriotic War of the Soviet Union and its great victory over fascism,


irrespective of the fact that the Red Army did not come to Albania. Under the leadership of J.V. Stalin, the Soviet Union bore the brunt of the Second World War and played the principal role in the destruction of fascism. The victories of the Red Army over Hitlerite Germany created suitable conditions for the Albanian people to rise up as one man and through their own heroic fight to secure their complete national independence and establish the people’s power.



 

 

 

 

 

 

Party of Labour of Albania