In “Bloated Bag,” part 1, talking about “Bunker Boy” Donald Trump—who continues to threaten and is responsible for vicious repression against protesters—I made this point:
Anybody can act “tough” when they are calling on a massive machinery of violence and destruction, like the U.S. military, to back them up.
And I spoke to the fact that, in opposition to the cowardly bully Trump:
The ones who are showing real courage and heart are the masses of people, of all races and genders, who have taken to the streets to demand an end to this brutality and murder, and have defied curfews and braved assaults from police and National Guard forces.1
If we go broader and deeper—beyond the confines of this country and the immediate time frame—we can see another shining example of people with real courage and heart going up against powerful oppressive forces: the Vietnamese people who fought heroically and at the cost of great sacrifice to drive out their colonizing oppressors. As Malcolm X put it, these were a people of a poor nation who chased the French colonialists right out of their country! And then, after the U.S. (which had backed the French colonialists in that war) took over directly and tried to dominate Vietnam, the revolutionary Vietnamese fighters, at the cost of great sacrifice, defeated the attempts of the most powerful military in the world to subjugate their country and forced it to withdraw. Unlike the U.S. military that slaughtered huge numbers of Vietnamese civilians, or the fundamentalist Islamic fanatics of these times who also slaughter and seek to terrorize masses of innocent civilians, the Vietnamese were fighting a war of liberation by revolutionary means.
Or, coming back to this country, if you want to talk about courage and heart, how about the Black Panther Party, which began with a small number of Black youth who went on armed patrols (legally at the time) in Oakland in the 1960s to prevent police from brutalizing and murdering Black people, and stood up against murder and continuing heavy repression from the government as, over the next few years, the BPP grew into a powerful revolutionary force throughout the country. And they did this in unity with revolutionary struggles going on throughout the world. (How many people know or remember that the leader of the Black Panther Party, Huey Newton, declared that, if they were needed, he was ready to send Black Panthers to fight on the side of the Vietnamese, against the U.S.?!)
Clearly, the Black Panthers, in their revolutionary days, were not the kind of “Second Amendment people” that Donald Trump likes to talk about! (And, in recent days—particularly in the context of the mass outpouring against institutionalized racism and police terror, and with the repressive response of the Trump/Pence regime and the threats and attacks by the fascist “base” of this regime—there have been Black people who have exercised their “Second Amendment rights,” in some cases raising political demands, such as the call for the World Court to investigate the United States for its murderous oppression of Black people. Even though this does not represent the same kind of revolutionary outlook of the Panthers in their early days, it does involve an important stand.)
Although both the Vietnamese liberation fighters and the Black Panther Party eventually were taken off the road of revolution, there is still much to learn from their revolutionary heroism at the height of their inspiring struggles.2
Applying the lessons from previous revolutionary struggles and forces, and going still deeper, here’s something worth thinking about: How about masses of Black and Brown youth today who, instead of killing each other, are taking up the 5-2-6 (basic principles of revolution) and are moving as a powerful positive force working for an actual revolution that will put an end to this oppressive system and bring something much better into being—a revolution based on the new communism and aiming to put an end to all the ways in which people anywhere are exploited, abused, terrorized, brutalized and slaughtered?!3
1. This is from the article by Bob Avakian, Donald Trump Isn’t “Tough,” He’s A Bloated Bag Of Fascist Feces, which is available at revcom.us. [back]
2. Bob Avakian (BA) was actively involved in opposing the U.S. imperialist war in Vietnam and in supporting and working with the Black Panther Party when it was the leading revolutionary force in the U.S. during the late 1960s, even as the ideology and political program of the BPP was (as BA has put it) a “mixed bag,” reflecting a combination of revolutionary nationalism and the inspiration and influence of communism in its most advanced expression at that time in China, which was then, under the leadership of Mao Zedong, carrying forward the socialist transformation of China itself while supporting revolutionary struggles throughout the world, including the mass uprising of Black people within the U.S. In developing the new communism, Bob Avakian has drawn from the positive but also the negative experience of the communist movement historically, and in particular that of revolutionary China (and the bitter lessons of the restoration of capitalism there after the death of Mao in 1976) as well as the experience of revolutionary movements, of various kinds, in different countries. In a number of works, including Hope For Humanity On A Scientific Basis, Breaking with Individualism, Parasitism and American Chauvinism, Bob Avakian sums up key factors involved in why the revolutionary upsurge in the 1960s and into the early 1970s (not just in the U.S. but internationally) ebbed, and leading revolutionary forces of that time were defeated or transformed into reformist and in some cases even counter-revolutionary appendages of the imperialist system. The point and purpose of this work by Bob Avakian, and the new synthesis (the new communism) it has brought forward, is to enable the struggle for the emancipation of the oppressed masses of humanity, and ultimately humanity as a whole, to overcome key obstacles and reach new heights, both in defeating and abolishing the existing oppressive system and in bringing a radically different and much better world into being.
An introduction to the new communism developed by Bob Avakian and his unique role as a revolutionary leader (in the article Bob Avakian: A Radically Different Leader—A Whole New Framework For Human Emancipation) and access to his body of work, can also be found at revcom.us. [back]
3. The 5-2-6 refers to the 5 STOPS—5 deep and defining contradictions of this system of capitalism-imperialism—5 ways in which this system oppresses people, plunders the environment, wages unjust wars and continually commits massive crimes against humanity; the two choices articulated by Bob Avakian (“we have two choices: either, live with all this—and condemn future generations to the same, or worse, if they have a future at all—or, make revolution!”); and the Six Points of Attention for the Revolution. The full presentation of the 5-2-6 can be found at revcom.us. [back]