Workers Vanguard No. 978

15 April 2011


Defend the Cuban Revolution!

(Quote of the Week)

Fifty years ago, the Spartacist League’s forebears in the Revolutionary Tendency (RT) of the Socialist Workers Party (SWP) advanced the call to defend and extend the Cuban Revolution. In a document presented to the SWP’s youth group, the Young Socialist Alliance (YSA), the RT upheld the need for a Trotskyist party against the liquidationist trajectory of the SWP leadership, which uncritically hailed Castro’s petty-bourgeois forces as they were consolidating bureaucratic rule. Pointing out that the process in Cuba was that of the formation of a deformed workers state—i.e., a society akin to the Soviet Union under the Stalinist bureaucracy—the RT advanced a program of political revolution, which would open the road to Cuba’s further development toward socialism in conjunction with the fight for world proletarian revolution.

The full victory of every modern revolution, the Cuban revolution included, requires the emergence in a leading role of a mass revolutionary-Marxist party. The small Trotskyist groups, in Cuba and elsewhere, have a vital role as the nucleus of such parties. They can fill this role only if they continually preserve their political independence and ability to act, and if they avoid the peril of yielding to non-Marxist and non-proletarian leaderships their own ideological responsibilities and the historic mission of the working class.

In its relation to the Cuban revolution the YSA, like every revolutionary group, has two principal tasks:

a) To exert the utmost effort to defend the Cuban revolution not only against the military and other attacks of U.S. imperialism, but also against the political attacks of the social-democratic agents of imperialism.

b) To struggle for the development and extension of the Cuban revolution and against the attempts of counterrevolutionary Stalinism to corrupt the revolution from within. We seek to further this development and extension both by supporting revolutionary actions of the existing leadership and by constructively criticizing, openly and frankly, the mistakes and inadequacies of that leadership. Both to develop the Cuban revolution and to extend it throughout the Hemisphere, we base ourselves on the imperative necessity for the establishment of workers democracy and the formation of the mass party of revolutionary Marxism.

—“The Cuban Revolution,” December 1961, printed in Spartacist No. 2 (July-August 1964)