Friday, April 15, 2016

A Party of the Masses and for the Masses (Part 2)
In the lead up to the 7th Party Congress Granma offers readers four articles tracing the creation, history and impact of the Communist Party of Cuba on the island. (Part 2)

Granma |
April 13, 2016 13:04:33

Fidel was the unquestionable driving force and constructor of unity among revolutionary forces. Since the liberation war’s earliest days, the maximum leader of the Revolution facilitated contact, reached compromises and accords with organizations participating in the struggle. After the January 1, 1959, victory, the Comandante en Jefe promoted meetings of the principal leaders of these forces, including some which required absolute discretion, and little by little made these encounters more regular and significant, in an effort to create a context for unity.

Just two months after the historic victory at Playa Girón, June 24, 1961, an important leadership plenum of the Popular Socialist Party (PSP) took place, with the maximum leaders of the July 26th Movement and the March 13 Revolutionary Directorate in attendance. At this meeting, a unanimous decision was made to unite the three forces, to undertake the most imperative tasks of the transition to and construction of socialism.

During the memorable meeting, Fidel was recognized as the nation’s principal leader. Once the unity resolution was approved, the PSP was dissolved, and, immediately thereafter, the July 26th Movement and the March 13 Revolutionary Directorate proceeded to do the same. These decisions led to the establishment of the Integrated Revolutionary Organizations (ORI), to coordinate joint-work prior to the formation of a new single party.

Following the event, the intense process of creating provincial and grassroots structures began. Thus, on March 8, 1962, the new party’s National Directorate was constituted, and on the 22nd, this body designated Fidel and Raúl as first and second Party secretaries, respectively, while Blas Roca was chosen as editor of the newspaper Hoy.

The birth of a single political organization, with a single leadership, meant an extraordinary strengthening of the Revolution. A few days earlier, March 13, Fidel had warned of and publicly denounced the emergence of certain sectarian attitudes, a lack of confidence in those who had not previously been members of the PSP, and discrimination regarding membership in the new party. Sectarianism in the process of constituting the new organization was cut short in time.

In virtue of this criticism, work was done to ensure that grassroots units of the ORI undertaking the formation of new party structures were strictly complying with the requirement that the population be consulted regarding members to be chosen.

Fidel made an extraordinary contribution, in theory and practice, to the construction of the Party. He was the architect of its constitution, based on the creative application of the ideas of Martí and Lenin, given the specific conditions of the Cuban Revolution, which were practically expressed in norms, procedures, leadership methods, principles, discipline, mass consultation, internal democracy and collective leadership.

Under these precepts, a political vanguard has been forged with the careful selection of members, closely tied to the masses, which has gained the prestige and authority so necessary to effective political work.

Referring to this conception, in April of 1962, Fidel commented, “The Revolution is made by the masses and for the masses. This is the Party’s reason for being, and all its prestige and all of its authority will be based on the real ties it has with the masses.”

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