The Brazilian crisis (Carlos Marighella)

From ProleWiki, the proletarian encyclopedia


The Brazilian crisis
AuthorCarlos Marighella
Written in1966
Sourcehttps://www.marxists.org/portugues/marighella/1966/mes/crise.htm


The causes of defeat and the prospects for the situation

The coup of April 1 came and became victorious, without the anti-coupist forces, and among them the communists, being able to put up any resistance. The only organized mass resistance against the coup was the general strike, even then unable to proceed, due to the general unpreparedness.

It is worth remembering that, with the resignation of Jânio, in 1961, we were taken by perplexity and we recognized that we were not prepared to face the events. We were warned, then, that new government crises would arise and that, in this case, we should act differently, doing everything so that, by then, we would have overcome our unpreparedness.

This was not the case with the deposition of the Jango government, at the time of the April coup. That is, we are still unprepared. The developing democratic process was paralyzed, and we entered a phase of retreat.

The lack of resistance to the coup was thus due to our unpreparedness. Political and above all ideological unpreparedness. Unpreparedness of the communists as well as of the entire anti-coupist area. This became evident during the April Revolution and in the following days, when there was no longer any response or directive for action from the leaderships, without any exception.

As for the communists, resistance became impossible because our policy - in essence - was being made dependent on government policy. That is, under the dependence of the leadership of the bourgeoisie, or better, of the sector of the bourgeoisie that occupied power. Such a position contributed to break the authority and to annul our strength, both necessary when it comes to influencing the single front, to lead it to consolidation, to paralyze the vacillating areas and to exercise a clear ideological role before the most radical sectors of the petty bourgeoisie.

When the leadership of the proletariat subordinates itself to the leadership of the bourgeoisie or identifies itself with it, the application of the revolutionary line inevitably deviates to the left and to the right. For in this case, the ideological ballast, the only resource capable of preventing the deviation of the course of the revolution, is missing.

The underestimation of the right-wing danger in the Brazilian political panorama was the result of the tailisim and illusion in government. It was believed that the bourgeoisie would follow the path of peaceful reforms under the pressure of the mass movement, and that the right would not rise. And that if this happened, the bourgeoisie would take the initiative in resisting and fighting the coup plotters.

There were countless times when we repeated that the unleashing of a right-wing coup would be civil war in the country, or that we would respond to the violence of the coup plotters with the violence of the masses. Since the words did not match the facts, this means that we were not prepared. We were confident that the government would resist. We didn't even insist on denouncing the right-wing coup. We failed to call the masses to vigilance and warn them of the possibility of resistance.

The lack of vigilance and the class illusion subsist exactly when the leadership leaves aside the establishment of a Marxist tactical plan and does not take into account the obligatory principle of retreat. Marxism-Leninism is entirely averse to the conception that in the mass struggle everything is about moving forward. Thus, when activating the political line in support of the reforms advocated by the sector of the ruling bourgeoisie, it was not enough to point out the successes achieved by the masses. At the same time, it was necessary to alert and organize them to the possibility of a retreat of the bourgeoisie, a capitulation to the right wing or the unleashing of a military coup - always the order of the day when the mass movement grows to the point of threatening power or bringing democracy to a change of quality.

The error that manifested itself was, therefore, an ideological error, which can be translated as the loss of the class sense of the revolutionary struggle of the Brazilian people. Such error, projected in historical dimension in our activity, is reflected in different and sometimes contradictory political and tactical manifestations of communists throughout the Brazilian political life.

It is impossible to escape the characterization of an evident and traditional ideological error in the Brazilian communist leadership.

The lack of ideological conditions in the Marxist leadership led to a political line that was likely to succeed ending in defeat.

With the same sense of lack of ideological substance came the false thesis of the "new tactics of imperialism." According to this thesis, US imperialism would not be interested in coups and dictatorship. The coup of April 1, inspired and promoted by the United States with support from its internal agents and Brazilian military fascism, invalidated this theory, whose main result was to leave us unprepared and perplexed in the face of the coup from the right.

An erroneous appreciation of the role of the armed forces led us to illusions in the government's military apparatus, an apparatus with a nationalist ideological basis, and that for this very reason, not being under the ideological influence of the proletariat, would never be mobilized to decide in favor of the masses any situation that could lead them to threaten the privileges of the ruling classes.

The repeated calls for a political general strike - without the support of the peasantry and without recourse to insurrection - signified a tactical error in the face of contemporary Marxism. The error was all the more evident insofar as our work within the proletariat developed with a clear characteristic of summit work and was in practice confined to state enterprises.

A basic flaw was the weakness of the peasant movement. The lack of decision to give priority to work in the countryside is responsible for this basic flaw, which has now become chronic. Without mobilization of the countryside it is impossible for the revolution to advance.

The Marxist leadership also failed to understand the objective character of the process of radicalization of some sectors of the petty bourgeoisie, which - together with other errors - contributed to our not having any decisive influence among sailors, sergeants, and other radical forces, thus making it impossible to achieve unity of action within the single front, of which we were also a part.

False leadership methods, the underestimation of collective leadership, the leadership's lack of ideological unity are other factors that led to the defeat we suffered.

Now we are faced with a new situation. Instead of a government of the bourgeoisie, fighting for reforms in its own way, within a climate of freedoms, we have a military takeover dictatorship, within a climate where democratic freedoms have been suppressed.

Our tactics cannot be the same as in the previous situation, when the mass movement was on the rise. Now the march of democracy has been interrupted, we have entered a phase of retreat. Even though the Brazilian problems continue to be structural reforms, we can only solve them by defeating the dictatorship and ensuring the restoration of democratic liberties. Our fundamental tactical objective - in order to achieve structural reforms and continue the struggle until a later victory for socialism - is to replace the present government with one that secures liberties and makes an opening for progress.

The government for which we fight now can only be the one resulting from the anti-dictatorship single front, which is the kind of single front possible today. Striving for such a single front to become a reality, we maintain - as before - the necessity of our alliance with the national bourgeoisie, taking into account not only everything that brings us closer to it, when it comes to common objectives in defense of national interests, but also everything that separates us from it in questions of class, tactics, methods, ideology, programs.

The main form of struggle in the present period is the struggle of mass resistance with its thousand and one particularities. And the party must be the head of the popular opposition, so that we are not left in the wake of the bourgeois opposition, which, as everything indicates, will seek to go ahead, trying to drag us in its rear. We cannot abandon the struggle for the leadership of the popular opposition, which would be an unforgivable abdication in the face of the dispute for hegemony in the destiny of the Brazilian people. We must, therefore, be firm fighters of the resistance, tireless in the fight against the dictatorship.

An erroneous appreciation of the role of the armed forces led us to illusions in the government's military apparatus, an apparatus with a nationalist ideological basis, and that for this very reason, not being under the ideological influence of the proletariat, would never be mobilized to decide in favor of the masses any situation that could lead them to threaten the privileges of the ruling classes.

The repeated calls for a political general strike - without the support of the peasantry and without recourse to insurrection - signified a tactical error in the face of contemporary Marxism. The error was all the more evident insofar as our work within the proletariat developed with a clear characteristic of summit work and was in practice confined to state enterprises.

A basic flaw was the weakness of the peasant movement. The lack of decision to give priority to work in the countryside is responsible for this basic flaw, which has now become chronic. Without mobilization of the countryside it is impossible for the revolution to advance.

The Marxist leadership also failed to understand the objective character of the process of radicalization of some sectors of the petty bourgeoisie, which - together with other errors - contributed to our not having any decisive influence among sailors, sergeants, and other radical forces, thus making it impossible to achieve unity of action within the single front, of which we were also a part.

False leadership methods, the underestimation of collective leadership, the leadership's lack of ideological unity are other factors that led to the defeat we suffered.

Now we are faced with a new situation. Instead of a government of the bourgeoisie, fighting for reforms in its own way, within a climate of freedoms, we have a military takeover dictatorship, within a climate where democratic freedoms have been suppressed.

Our tactics cannot be the same as in the previous situation, when the mass movement was on the rise. Now the march of democracy has been interrupted, we have entered a phase of retreat. Even though the Brazilian problems continue to be structural reforms, we can only solve them by defeating the dictatorship and ensuring the restoration of democratic liberties. Our fundamental tactical objective - in order to achieve structural reforms and continue the struggle until a later victory for socialism - is to replace the present government with one that secures liberties and makes an opening for progress.

The government for which we fight now can only be the one resulting from the anti-dictatorship single front, which is the kind of single front possible today. Striving for such a single front to become a reality, we maintain - as before - the necessity of our alliance with the national bourgeoisie, taking into account not only everything that brings us closer to it, when it comes to common objectives in defense of national interests, but also everything that separates us from it in questions of class, tactics, methods, ideology, programs.

The main form of struggle in the present period is the struggle of mass resistance with its thousand and one particularities. And the party must be the head of the popular opposition, so that we are not left in the wake of the bourgeois opposition, which, as everything indicates, will seek to go ahead, trying to drag us in its rear. We cannot abandon the struggle for the leadership of the popular opposition, which would be an unforgivable abdication in the face of the dispute for hegemony in the destiny of the Brazilian people. We must, therefore, be firm fighters of the resistance, tireless in the fight against the dictatorship.

Many other tactical elements have to be changed in the new situation. The mass movement - for whose changing quality we must continue to fight - can no longer aim, in the present conditions, at putting pressure on the government, as if its purpose were to change the policy and composition of the dictatorship. The objective of the mass movement is to defeat the dictatorship, to replace it with another government.

The elections also have a different character. Their objectives are not for us the same as those of the elections in the period before the coup. It is not about electing nationalists as before, when democratic freedoms were in force, and by this means achieve a change in the correlation of forces.

It is about making efforts to agglutinate the forces that oppose the dictatorship and contribute to lead it to defeat by reducing its political and social base. If none of this is possible through elections - as the dictatorship calls them - our duty is to denounce it to the masses, even if we do not refuse to use the minimum legal possibilities.

The party must stop being a kind of appendix of the parties of the bourgeoisie, to be able to drag the proletariat and the popular masses. Our appearance alongside candidates committed to the coup and the dictatorship demoralizes us with the masses, and helps to justify the electoral farce. What we cannot do is help the institutionalization of the dictatorship by capitulating to the violence and threats of the coup plotters or allowing ourselves to be deceived by their maneuvers.

For the dictatorship, elections represent a means to institutionalize the coup. With the suppression of direct elections and the curtailment of the people's right to elect their representatives, the establishment of ineligibility, the dissolution of political parties, and many other coercive measures, elections have become a farce.

The inauguration of those elected is a concession of the dictatorial government. Those who won or will win an electoral victory in opposition to the dictatorship will be allowed nothing more than the tutelage of a military super-government, freely chosen by the Executive and its Minister of War. This further abolishes the autonomy of the states and municipalities, and the appointment of government secretaries and other authorities is no longer a function of the elected officials, but of the NIS and the National Security Council, organs through which the military power operates.

Backed by powers such as no president in Brazil has ever had, in the style of that L'Etat c'est moi with which Louis XIV of France established the principle of absolute monarchy, the current President of the Republic, through indirect elections, will seek to guarantee a military person as his successor.

Despite the implacable action of the dictatorship, progressively crushing by force the escape valves of the legal means of resistance, the year 1966 is expected to be full of political tensions, due to the struggle for presidential succession.

Nothing indicates an end to political instability, a reflection of the chronic crisis of structure. Political instability continues to characterize the country's situation. The tendency is for class contradictions to worsen.

Institutional Act number 2, and the other complementary acts, indicate that the dictatorship cannot stop at the precipice. Crises of government, the outbreak of new coups, the decree of siege, border conflicts, and many other events, reflecting political unrest, naturally await the Brazilian people.

These results can occur as a consequence of the disastrous economic-financial policy of the government, the concordats, unemployment, high prices, submission to the International Monetary Fund, the anti-worker policy, the policy of surrender and submission to the United States and, in parallel, the growth of the mass struggles.

Another predictable factor of worsening of the Brazilian crisis is the aggressiveness of Yankee imperialism, which is increasing unceasingly. The most recent example was the resolution of the US House of Representatives, determining the US military invasion in any country that the so-called colossus of the North considers threatened by communism. Here the word communism is just a substitute for the peoples' national liberation movement.

Such an example would not suffice, and it would be sufficient to add the invasion of Santo Domingo and the Vietnam War. Brazilian troops are already taking part in the military intervention in Santo Domingo, which, side by side with the hated American "marines", are helping to massacre the brave Dominican people fighting for their freedom.

The antipathy with which the Latin American peoples view Brazil, as a result of their vassalage to the aggressive action of the American imperialists, will not fail to produce its effects among our people, and will lead to an increase of popular opposition to the Brazilian dictatorship.

It is not impossible that in the face of a disadvantageous situation for the current dictatorship in Brazil, or in case it is threatened by the masses to be overthrown, the United States will come to the rescue of the dictatorial government - that serves as a support to them - and in favor of the Brazilian ruling classes, initiating reprisals against the people and the nation, and even occupying parts of our territory, such as the Northeast. They will do nothing but continue the economic, political and military aggression already underway in our country.

It would be unforgivable if the popular and nationalist forces would again be taken by surprise by the events to come. For Brazilian revolutionaries there is no other perspective but to prepare for the struggle.

The Brazilian crisis and the revolutionary strategy

The Brazilian crisis is a crisis of structure. And here we refer to the economic structure. Which is to say: the Brazilian crisis - in all senses, be it economic, political or social - stems from the inadaptability of the country's current economic structure. From its incapacity to bear the excessively heavy load placed upon it.

Being - by definition - the economic structure the set of production relations, it is in these relations, in the equation of its current problems, that we will find the causes of the Brazilian crisis.

The relations of production in Brazil encompass our property system. And not only that. They also include the relations between the men engaged in the production process, as well as the forms of distribution of wealth or material goods.

It is these relations of production that are in crisis - if we may say so. For they are no longer in harmony with the conditions required for our progress and development. And they constitute an obstacle to the advance of our productive forces. This is evident in the dominance of North American imperialism over Brazilian property and the Brazilian economy, in the predominance and monopoly of latifundian territorial property, in the misappropriation of the fruits of labor, in the disproportionate distribution of material goods, accentuating the accumulation of wealth in the hands of a privileged few, while millions of Brazilians vegetate, reduced to the most basic misery.

In these relations of production a picture is thus configured where real points of corrosion threaten to bring down the economic structure.

Resulting from the economic base that sustains it and to which it is intimately linked, the present superstructure of Brazilian society suffers from many evils. The corrosion points of the economic base do not cease to act upon this superstructure, which is also in crisis, and severely undermined by the contradictions, antagonisms and conflicts that shake it.

This explains why - in addition to others - Brazilian political institutions are in permanent crisis. And why political instability is a characteristic of the Brazilian political situation.

One of the particularities of the Brazilian crisis is its chronic character. The Brazilian crisis is part of the general crisis of capitalism. To each new phase of the general crisis of capitalism corresponds a new aspect of the economic crisis.

Brazilian society would go through many important changes before it became the present society.

From slavery it would evolve to another type of relations, which would lead to capitalism, to the wage-earning regime, although the dependence on North-American imperialism would be preserved and the land monopoly would be maintained, with the survival and reaffirmation of the latifundium.

A noted historian and renowned literary critic, Nelson Werneck Sodré appreciated the phenomena that conditioned the development of Brazilian society. He did this in several works, among them "Formação Histórica do Brasil", "História da Burguesia Brasileira", "História Militar do Brasil", whose reading will always be of great use.

Brazilian society today is oriented in a sensibly bourgeois sense. But with its particularities and its Brazilian typicism, a result of the conditions that generated its development.

The great changes that took place in its structure and that led it - in the contemporary era - to its current stage, originated mainly from the implantation of the steel industry, the petroleum industry and the electric power industry. Unlike the great capitalist countries of today, Brazil reached a certain level of capitalist development when the world had already entered the age of imperialism. More than that, at the time when the world is divided between two great world social systems - that of imperialism and that of socialism.

Brazil has not, therefore, been able to catch up with the highly developed countries. It is - as is well known - in the ranks of the underdeveloped. And - a characteristic worthy of mention - it cannot follow the classical trajectory of the countries that rose to capitalism through the industrial revolution.

Brazil reached the threshold of its typical industrial expansion at a moment when the industrial revolution had already taken place in the main countries of the world and when the contemporary era had already acquired its essential characteristics. This is the phenomenon that explains why the Brazilian bourgeoisie had neither the strength nor the accumulated resources to implement Brazil's basic industry, starting from private initiative. To implement basic industry it had to leave it in the hands of the state, which installed the steel industry and took upon itself the task of exploiting petroleum and expanding the production of electric energy. The state monopoly would thus emerge as a category of national capitalism, patenting the Brazilian bourgeoisie's weakness to make basic industry a product of private enterprise.

The originality of Brazilian development resides not only in the coincidence of each new surge of industry in the country with a new phase of the general crisis of capitalism. It should be added that, under these conditions, each step forward means the appearance of new and deeper contradictions in the Brazilian process. This can only lead to a new aggravation of the economic crisis.

In turn, the advance of technology in highly developed countries influences in a capitalist sense the productive forces in underdeveloped countries. Certain conquests of modern technology end up being transferred to Brazil. This phenomenon produces alterations in our productive forces, with reflections in the set of production relations and even in the superstructure.

Brazil is a country that, without having managed to resolve contradictions corresponding to the first phase of the general crisis of capitalism, finds itself obliged to face new and serious problems, accumulated in two other phases of the same general crisis.

All this gives us an impressive picture of the seriousness of the chronic Brazilian crisis - originating in the growth of capitalism in conditions of dependence on imperialism and maintenance of the latifundium.

Such a crisis could not subsist without solutions being sought by the various classes.

We are here in the realm of politics, understood as the means, methods and forms that the classes have used to gain power or solve their problems through the activity of the State.

Two main types of political solutions have been proposed in Brazil by the classes. One is the type of solutions concerning the bourgeoisie. The other corresponds to the proletariat.

All solutions attempted by the bourgeoisie bear the stamp of a class that distinguishes itself from the proletariat by being a business class, owner of means of production that allow it an immense capitalist accumulation.

The Brazilian bourgeoisie is also distinguished from the proletariat by keeping very close ties with the large estate and links with imperialism, despite the conflicts with the latter and the fact that the large estate limits its internal market.

That is why such solutions range from the use of force and suppression of liberties to attempted reforms of greater or lesser amplitude. The period of João Goulart's government was the one in which a sector of the bourgeoisie tried to go further in the struggle for reforms. Its inevitable failure was the result of the limitations of the Brazilian bourgeoisie, marked by the tendency to conciliation and capitulation, as a logical consequence of its class conditions and its intertwining with imperialism and the latifundium.

As a consequence of the solutions formulated by the bourgeoisie and simultaneously as a solution in itself, the most that the Brazilian bourgeoisie managed to achieve was to give the country an economic development. Although dependent on imperialism, such development meant progress and a step forward. But here the law of capitalist accumulation was followed, which - for this very reason - did not fail to mean an enormous sacrifice for the great masses, the increase of their poverty and exploitation, especially when it comes to the rural masses.

The balance of the solutions applied by the bourgeoisie - including the developmentalist solution - and the examination of the types of solutions put into practice or attempted by the Brazilian bourgeois class show their unpopular content, most of the time an anti-democratic tendency and, in general, their failure before the combined forces of imperialism, the latifundia and coup d'état.

In giving course to its solutions, the bourgeoisie has shown itself incapable of conducting the Brazilian process, either by its inability to remove North American imperialism from our path, or by the impossibility of eliminating the latifundium and the contradictions accumulated and aggravated in the country in these three phases of the general crisis of capitalism.

In the Brazilian political process, in fact, there are two striking facts to point out. One of them is that whenever there was progress, the conquest of social rights and progress, the combat against imperialism and the latifundium, this was predominantly due to the active presence of the proletariat.

The other fact is that - after the Estado Novo - the most serious impact that interrupted the process occurred with the April 1st coup.

All these facts are due above all to the consequences, contradictions and mistakes generated by the exclusive use of the bourgeoisie-proletariat binomial, which - by its very nature - annuls the political participation of the peasantry in the process.

Who has the vocation, the historical destiny and the conditions to solve the chronic Brazilian crisis is the proletariat with its allies of the united front. Attracting the peasantry - its fundamental ally - and incorporating it to the political struggle, creating its own base force, to make the united front grow and give it consequences, unleashing struggles, paralyzing the vacillating influence of the bourgeoisie, although maintaining an alliance with it in the present historical stage, the Brazilian proletariat gathers in its hands the means, conditions and elements necessary for the solution demanded by our people.

It is in this way, and within this equation, that the binomial nationalism-democracy will have an adequate focus and the dimension that will lead it to match the demands and needs of the Brazilian nation. Only by disputing hegemony to the bourgeoisie will our proletariat be able to do this.

The Brazilian proletariat has already formulated in its own way one of the solutions to our chronic crisis, participating in the national evolutionary process, after having attempted the revolutionary and insurrectional path of the Aliança Nacional Libertadora (National Liberation Alliance), in 1935.

Why this happened - here is a phenomenon directly related to our proletariat itself, from its origins and appearance as a class, to its transformation into a class for itself. The singularities of such a process, the conditions that led to the constitution of the vanguard of the proletariat - as a result of the overflow of its level of consciousness to the highest degree - constitute a matter that Astrojildo Pereira speaks of masterfully in his work "Historical Formation of the PCB", to whose study we must resort.

In France, England, Germany, Italy, the United States and other important countries, the proletariat emerged - as a class in itself and for itself - concomitantly with basic industry and the industrial revolution, which characterized the modern era.

The Brazilian proletariat, however, only emerged, with its branch of basic industry, much later, at the time of the Second World War.

It was exactly in such circumstances, and as a result of them, that patriotic, nationalist or anti-imperialist slogans and words of liberal and democratic meaning attained enormous vibration and receptivity throughout the country. The Brazilian proletariat grew and became stronger, its basic industrial sector strengthened, under the influence of the great national campaigns for steelworks, for oil, for a state monopoly, in defense of the mineral wealth and for the expansion of the electrical industry, in defense of national industry, against fascism, for sending the FEB to Europe, for the Constituent Assembly, in defense of democracy and democratic liberties, against the coup, against sending troops to Korea, in defense of peace and against war.

It was under the aegis of the binomial nationalism-democracy that the Brazilian proletariat was able to play a political role, as the process of its expansion in the framework of the productive forces intensified.

Both in the economic and political plan, the Brazilian evolutionary process and its developmental expansionism were led by a sector of the bourgeoisie, preponderantly industrial.

For communists - as in general for the left - this meant a long period of collaboration with the forces of the bourgeoisie. The necessity of the anti-imperialist struggle and the obligation to fight the coup forces, which oppose progress and freedom, placed the popular and nationalist forces and their revolutionary leadership in a position of dependence vis-à-vis the Brazilian bourgeoisie.

The opposite could have occurred, but this would depend on a more correct application of Marxism-Leninism to the Brazilian reality, which did not happen.

Historical conditions and peculiarities of the Brazilian situation facilitated the hegemony of the bourgeoisie in driving the process. However, the hegemony of the bourgeoisie is not a historical fatality, and nothing indicates that the proletariat should assume a conformist position and bow indefinitely to the bourgeois leadership.

Such subordination was possible, as we have seen, because the revolutionary leadership limited its action until today to the management of the bourgeois-proletariat binomial, which in our historical process has conditioned the binomial nationalism-democracy.

When the Marxist leadership restricts its revolutionary, anti-imperialist and democratic plan to the unity and struggle between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, and only has before it the two classes allying or clashing, the victory of the revolution is unlikely. The leadership then remains in the power of the bourgeoisie. But this leadership is vacillating and prone to conciliation, especially when the interests of the bourgeoisie are severely wounded by imperialism and the landlordism, and it fears the proletariat in struggle against these two enemies.

In any case, but especially in the face of the bourgeoisie-proletariat binomial, we - those of us who follow Marxism-Leninism - have no other recourse but to build the strength of the proletariat, so as not to be subordinated to the bourgeoisie.

The strength of the proletariat is built by working with itself, without rest, at its base, and therefore in the industrial enterprises. Without work in the enterprises, especially in the imperialist enterprises and in the enterprises of the branches of basic industry, it is not possible to strengthen the proletariat.

But this is not the only factor in the accumulation of strength. Whatever the circumstances, the decisive thing is to have work in the countryside, is to lead the rural masses into struggle, seeing in the peasant the fundamental ally of the proletariat. The inconstancy and backwardness of work in the countryside constitute the weak side of the Brazilian revolution and of the Marxist leadership - which has led to repeated failures.

The Brazilian crisis has reached a point where the proletariat cannot claim to solve it by following the previous formula - peaceful path and support for the bourgeoisie in the struggle for reforms.

This path could only have been successful in Brazil if the Marxist leadership was equipped with sufficient ideological ballast, that would allow it to lead the struggle without losing the class sense or deviating from the direction of the revolution. The opposite happened, however, and the peaceful path of reforms was led to defeat by the April 1st coup.

Now the peaceful path has been overcome. To persist on this path is to adopt a strategy that will contribute to the institutionalization of the coup and the dictatorship.

This institutionalization - that the dictatorship seeks to carry out - is aimed at paralyzing the liberation movement of the Brazilian people, subjugating the proletariat and the popular and nationalist forces, and turning Brazil into a permanent or enduring satellite of the United States.

The theses of westernization and the interdependence of sovereignty, advanced in connection with the inevitability of the 3rd world war, are the ideological cover of institutionalization.

This is the new political way out that the ruling classes - in collaboration with the United States - seek, after the April coup and as a result of it, to prevent the rise of the masses and the liberation of our country from the North American sphere of influence.

The adoption - once again - of a peaceful path by the Marxists would not allow them to take the initiative, nor to unleash any decisive action against the dictatorship and its intended institutionalization. And this is because the dictatorship is based on force, which is the main element employed against the people and against the opposition. The only effect of a new peaceful path, attempted as a solution to the Brazilian crisis, would be to push the Marxists into a miscalculation and inevitable collaboration with the dictatorship, to the benefit of the interests of the backward classes.

Besides being outdated - and therefore inoperative for the popular and nationalist forces - a strategy based on the peaceful path would bring about another danger.

This other danger - the occurrence of which does not exclude the use of violence and military force by the dictatorship - would be the involvement of the nationalist and popular forces. In this case the Marxists - following a strategy guided by the peaceful path - could help to transform Brazil into a social democratic country, exercising on behalf of the United States the role of a brake on the Latin American liberation movement.

The peaceful path of the Brazilian revolution -at the present moment- would have the effect of continuing to feed illusions in the people, and would undermine the morale of the popular and nationalist forces, which need revolutionary stimulus.

The facts indicate that the proletariat - in the face of the tremendous impact of the Aprilada - has no other recourse but to adopt a revolutionary strategy, leading to the overthrow of the dictatorship. It is the revolution, the preparation of the "people's armed insurrection". It is about the non-peaceful, violent path, even civil war. Without recourse to violence by the masses, the dictatorship will be institutionalized for a longer or shorter period.

Without a revolutionary strategy, without revolutionary action supported by work from the base and not exclusively from the top, it is impossible to build the single front, to move the masses and give them the leadership required for victory over the dictatorship.

A revolutionary strategy - indispensable to get out of the doldrums and doldrums - requires pertinent work with the basic forces of the revolution - the proletariat, the rural masses, the intellectuals, the students.

The work with the bourgeoisie - in this strategy - cannot be the fundamental work, although it is not a question of abandoning it altogether.

A revolutionary strategy must lead to the break with the policy of subordination of the proletariat to the bourgeoisie, to the separation between the party of the proletariat and the parties of the bourgeoisie.

Acting as an independent force, the communists - and in general the Brazilian left - will have a place in the sun and will achieve success, dragging the masses along. The so-called Brazilian elites have already demonstrated their failure. It would be a disaster for us to attempt any solution that would compromise our independence from them.

Acting with the basic forces of the revolution, the most important work, the one that has priority, is the action in the countryside, the displacement of the struggles to the interior of the country, the conscientization of the peasantry. In the Brazilian strategic scheme, the pedestal of the proletariat's action is the rural worker. The alliance of the proletarians with the peasants is the cornerstone of the Brazilian revolution. It will mean a great step forward - that is, the substitution of the bourgeoisie-proletariat scheme for a Marxist strategic plan. In this plan, the peasant and the countryside will play the decisive role in supporting the struggle of the urban masses. And it is under this aspect that a second front must be opened. This means that we should not limit our action exclusively to the cities, where, in addition to summit meetings, we need a deep penetration among the proletariat in the large companies. This is indispensable. But there will be no possibility of strategic success, except with the second front, in the countryside.

Another basic element in the strategic plan is the military forces and the role they play in the revolution - a subject we will deal with in a following essay.

The possibility of a split in the military forces - a possibility foreseen in the complex Brazilian political picture - interests the strategic plan as a probable factor in the civil war. The popular and nationalist forces must then be prepared and provided with total independence, which would allow them the widest freedom of action, in order not to be towed along by one or the other of the fighting factions.

The solution of the chronic Brazilian crisis by armed means - as a solution coming from the proletariat - demands hard struggle and sacrifices on the part of the vanguard. It is a solution of depth, always aiming at patient, tenacious and continuous work with the permanent forces of the revolution. And it has the possibility of support from broad layers, as popular discontent grows, and the dictatorship accelerates steps toward institutionalization.

The Brazilian experience shows the need to insist on a revolutionary solution.

In the present historical conditions, to renounce the revolutionary strategy is to compromise the future of Brazil and Latin America.