On the October Socialist Revolution
Answers to questions from newspaper Pravda of the Communist Party of Russian Federation (2017.11.07)
1. What role have the Great October Socialist Revolution and the experience of Soviet power in the USSR played in the emergence and development of your party?
With regard to the foundation of the Japanese Communist Party, the JCP Program states as follows: The Japanese Communist Party was founded on July 15, 1922, in the midst of the popular liberation struggle surging in Japan and the world, as a party with scientific socialism as its theoretical basis following the Japanese history of the struggle for social progress and change.
The October Socialist Revolution is included in the above-mentioned “popular liberation struggle” as an important event.
The revolutionary government, in its early stages under the leadership of Lenin, embarked on a series of positive efforts to aim for socialism in spite of the social and economic backwardness it faced as well as the trial and error process it had to go through. However, after Lenin’s death, Stalin and other successive Soviet leaders discarded the principles of socialism. Internationally, it took the path of hegemonism through invasion and oppression of other nations. Domestically, it imposed despotism that repressed the people. These acts inflicted tremendous damage on efforts and movements worldwide working for socialism.
We believe that these errors deviating from the spirit and basic principles of socialism led the Soviet Union and the Communist Party of the Soviet Union to collapse. Since 1950, the JCP faced various interventions by Stalin and his successors, and the party built its sovereign independent line by struggling against them.
2. What were the periods in the history of your party when the influence of the ideas of the Great October Socialist Revolution manifested itself most powerfully?
The October Revolution was a revolution that represented Russian people’s urgent demand for “Peace, Land, and Bread!” as well as a historic attempt to realize a society which breaks away from capitalism and consists of really equal and free human relationships free from exploitation, oppression, and war. We believe that that revolution holds a special place in the pages of world history and continues to significantly affect today’s world.
The October Revolution brought the curtain down on the era that capitalism was regarded as the only system controlling the world, and provided an important momentum that led to the collapse of colonial system and the political independence of many nations after World War II. The revolutionary government’s initiatives – such as the Decree on Peace, the Declaration of the Rights of the Peoples of Russia, and the Declaration of Rights of Working and Exploited People – have greatly contributed to the establishment of the right to national self-determination, peaceful diplomacy, the improvement of workers’ rights and lives, and the establishment of people’s social and economic rights. All of these are taken for granted in the modern world. Based on these achievements, we are promoting our activities today.
3. The Great October Socialist Revolution was a proletarian revolution. How does your party define its social base under current conditions? Please share the experience of your party’s work at enterprises and in the midst of the working masses.
The JCP is not only a party of the Japanese working class but also a party of the people, and opens its door to all people who have a willingness to strive for democracy, national independence, peace, better living conditions, and a progressive future for Japan.
Regarding the task of building a bigger and stronger party among the working class, we now call for undertaking the task as a joint effort of workplace branches and the party as a whole. Regardless of the presence or absence of labor unions, we strive to establish daily ties with workers and build relationships of trust with them as the basis of party activities. Based on these activities, while fighting exploitation and oppression by the capitalist class, the JCP promotes activities to defend workers’ rights and strives to expand the clout of the party.
4. What are the main features of the tactics of your party at the present stage? How do the ideas and experience of the Great October Socialist Revolution help your party in its class struggle today?
In regard to the experience of the October Revolution, we regard Lenin’s quest in his last years as valuable. His quest includes the New Economic Policy (NEP), which is a plan to advance toward socialism through a market economy, and a peaceful coexistence diplomacy among countries with different political systems. He placed importance on the need to form a majority among the working class as well as on the tactics needed to form a united front in capitalist countries.
The political change Japanese society needs at present is a democratic revolution - a revolution that puts an end to Japan’s extraordinary subordination to the United States and the tyrannical rule of large corporations and business circles, and a revolution that secures Japan’s genuine independence and carries out democratic reforms in politics, the economy, and society. Our policy is that the united front forces comprising all people who aspire to achieve national independence, democracy, peace and better living conditions will help to advance this transformation step by step, winning the stable majority in the Diet (the national parliament) with the support of the majority of the populace. We think that the transformation toward socialism will be a long process that also needs to employ a stage-by-stage process based on national consensus.
The creative quest advanced by Lenin has had an important significance in the JCP’s struggle to overcome the inherent contradictions of capitalism and to advance to a socialist/communist society in Japan.
November 7, 2017
Coordinator of the International Commission,
Central Committee, the Japanese Communist Party