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Revolution in Nepal scales new heights

The Spark 16 July 2001

For years the capitalist media have kept quiet about the really big news in Nepal. Regular readers of The Spark will know we are referring to Nepal’s people’s war, led by the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist). It is a development we have followed closely and frequently reported on since it began in 1996. The movement is so powerful now that the capitalist press is no longer able to suppress the news.

According to BBC reports the Maoist, who are leading the people’s war, have control of around a quarter of the country. Their growing strength can be seen in recent weeks when on one day around 40 policemen were killed in three different actions across Nepal. (See panel on opposite page).

Another BBC report (4 July, 2001) told how thousands of armed activists are in the guerrilla army. In a remote village the reporters spoke to women activists. One of the local commanders, Comrade Praveen, spoke of her reasons for supporting the people’s war. ‘I am fighting this war to create a true people’s democracy. This is a feudal society – the king and all the landlords rule by the gun. We want to overthrow them and create a people’s republic’. Sunil, a local school teacher told how the Maoists have improved the quality of life for local people. ‘In this place, when I came here, there was no drinking water. The Maoists have provided drinking water. If they see a problem they will do something for the people’.

Another activist, a woman with three children declared the women will join the men in opposing the government and will fight if necessary. ‘The Maoists are the only ones helping women’, she said. ‘They give us more rights, and education – the government does nothing for us. If the enemy ever comes here, we women will fight them just as our men do’.

The landlords and capitalists have mounted a campaign to paint the guerrillas as terrorists, but the support the people’s war has from the masses shows the revolutionaries are serving the people. The capitalist press always implies the guerrillas are responsible for the 1700-2000 causalities since the people’s war began. The truth is the reverse. The state forces – the police in the main – have done most of the killing, carried on repressive campaigns against the masses in an attempt to crush the revolution and intimidate its supporters. Padma Ratna Tuladhar, who the BBC says is the main negotiator between the government and the guerrilla army, says the guerrillas are doing ‘violent things only against the government or what they refer to as "notorious persons". There are no complaints from the common people in the villages’. (BBC report 4 July 2001).

The CPN (M) is applying Mao’s strategy of people’s war and has adopted the style of ‘serve the people’. That is why the masses speak so highly of the them and are joining their ranks so readily.

The people’s war in Nepal is a struggle for New Democracy; a revolution led by the working class, waged by a coalition of anti-feudal and anti-imperialist classes. Mao considered that underdeveloped countries which were former colonies or semi-colonies of imperialism with large peasant populations would be suited to the strategy of fighting a protracted people’s war in which the countryside surrounded the cities. Nepal is all of these things. The working class is small and cannot carry out a directly socialist insurrection as was done in Russia, but it can lead the peasant masses (who are revolutionary) to liberate areas of the countryside and turn them into revolutionary base areas. These areas are often temporary and may be recaptured by the state before being won back again by the revolutionary forces; but the long-term goal is for the countryside to surround the cities. The cities, in semi-feudal and semi-colonial countries, are the strongholds of imperialism and too powerful to be taken in city insurrections before the countryside is liberated.

The development of the people’s war in Nepal is a tremendous step forward in the renewal of the world communist movement. It is taking the stage – with people’s war in the Philippines, Peru, India and Turkey – and showing the way forward for the oppressed countries. These people’s wars are leading the struggle against imperialism and weakening its grip on the world. On 1 July 2001, nine Maoist parties active in South Asia formed a co-ordination committee with the aim of strengthening functional unity among the parties and to further develop the people’s wars in South Asia. Four Maoist parties from India, three from Bangladesh and one each from Sri Lanka and Nepal are members of the committee. The committee also undertook to co-ordinate their activities with the Maoists in Peru, the Philippines and Turkey.

As the revolution in Nepal gathers strength the state forces are preparing to carry out more severe repression in a desperate bid at counter-revolution. The intervention of India and agencies of the USA, such as the CIA, is already a reality. International solidarity in support of the people’s war in Nepal is needed now to rally opposition to intervention. The Spark promises to keep readers informed of events as they unfold. o

Please visit the site where it was published:

20.07. 2001 Revolution in Nepal scales new heights
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30.08. 1999 Mao in the Mountains of Nepal, by Richard S. Ehrlich
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