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Introduction

Communism (from Latin communis, "common, universal") is a philosophical, social, political, and economic ideology and movement whose ultimate goal is the establishment of a communist society, which is a socioeconomic order structured upon the ideas of common ownership of the means of production and the absence of social classes, money, and the state.

Communism includes a variety of schools of thought, which broadly include Marxism and anarchism (anarcho-communism), as well as the political ideologies grouped around both. All of these share the analysis that the current order of society stems from its economic system, capitalism; that in this system there are two major social classes; that conflict between these two classes is the root of all problems in society; and that this situation will ultimately be resolved through a social revolution. The two classes are the working class—who must work to survive and who make up the majority within society—and the capitalist class—a minority who derives profit from employing the working class through private ownership of the means of production. The revolution will put the working class in power and in turn establish social ownership of the means of production, which according to this analysis is the primary element in the transformation of society towards communism.

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East German stamp commemorating the conference
The Conference of Communist and Workers Parties of Europe was an international meeting of communist parties, held in the city of East Berlin, on 29–30 June 1976. In all, 29 parties from across Europe participated in the conference. Notable participants at the meeting included Brezhnev, Ceauşescu, Gierek, Husák, Honecker, Kádár, Tito, Zhivkov, Carrillo, Berlinguer, Marchais and Cunhal.

The conference highlighted several important changes in the European communist movement. It exhibited the declining influence of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and a widening gap between the independent and orthodox camps amongst European communist parties, with the ascent of a new political trend, Eurocommunism.

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Lin Biao
Lin Biao (pinyin: Lín Biāo; IPA: [lǐn pjáu]; 5 December 1907 – 13 September 1971) was a major Chinese Communist military leader who was pivotal in the communist victory in the Chinese Civil War, especially in Northeastern China. Lin was the general who commanded the decisive Liaoshen Campaign and Pingjin Campaign, co-led the Manchurian Field Army of the People's Liberation Army into Beijing, and crossed the Yangtze River in 1949. He ranked third among the Ten Marshals. Zhu De and Peng Dehuai were considered senior to Lin, and Lin ranked directly ahead of He Long and Liu Bocheng.

Lin abstained from taking an active role in politics after the civil war, but became instrumental in creating the foundations for Mao Zedong's cult of personality in the early 1960s. Lin was rewarded for his service to Mao by being named Mao's designated successor during the Cultural Revolution, from 1966 until his death.

Lin died in September 1971 when his plane crashed in Mongolia, following what appeared to be a failed coup to oust Mao. Because little inside information is available to the public on what has been dubbed as the "Lin Biao incident", the exact events preceding Lin's death have been a source of speculation ever since. Following Lin's death, he was officially condemned as a traitor by the Communist Party of China. He and Jiang Qing are still considered to be the two "major Counter-revolutionary cliques" blamed for the excesses of the Cultural Revolution.

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Beneath Comrade Trotsky’s effective formulas we can here easily distinguish the feelings inevitably involved by his original theory: On the one hand despair, pessimism, disbelief, and on the other hand exaggerated hopes in the methods of supreme administration (a term of Lenin’s), in the competent subjection of economic difficulties from above.

The last discussion is still fresh in our memories. It gave the Party a graphic survey of the totality of Comrade Trotsky’s errors, as dealt with above. But it also showed with special clearness another error, another feature of Trotskyism, and one far from being new. This is the attempt to undermine and weaken the main framework of the dictatorship, the Party. The same object was aimed at by the discrediting of the “cadres” of the Party, by the resurrected Menshevist conception of the Party as a collection of “groups and currents,” and the essentially liquidatory undermining of the authority of the leading institutions (“they are leading the country to destruction”). And has it not been under Comrade Trotsky’s banner that the idea of greater freedom from Party influence for extra-Party organizations has flourished? Has not all this, taken together, led to a weakening of the dictatorship of the proletariat, and has it not all been based upon an under-estimation of the conditions under which we—in an agrarian country—have to realise the dictatorship? Is it not a petty bourgeois deviation?

So long as the Party is perfectly sound and everything goes well, Comrade Trotsky quietly performs every task which falls to him: but as soon as the Party encounters any obstacle, as soon as it has to adjust its rudder, then Comrade Trotsky at once springs forward in the role of saviour and teacher of the Party, but invariably points out the wrong way, since he has not absorbed the principles of Bolshevism.

— Lev Kamenev (1883-1936)
Leninism or Trotskyism? , 1924

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PRC office Venice.jpg
Communist Refoundation Party office in Venice.

Photo credit: degreezero2000

Communism News

28 November 2019 – Censorship in Vietnam
In the third case this month, and the second this week, a court in Vietnam convicts and sentences a Facebook user to nine years in prison for defaming the ruling Communist Party and government. (Reuters)
26 November 2019 – 2019 Australian Parliament infiltration plot, Chinese intelligence activity abroad
ASIO is investigating an alleged plot by the Communist Party of China to install an agent into the Parliament of Australia. (ABC Australia)
12 September 2019 – Social media use in politics
Twitter suspends several Cuban government and state media accounts, including First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba Raúl Castro and his daughter Mariela Castro. The pro-government Union of Journalists of Cuba denounces the suspensions as "massive censorship". (The Guardian) (BBC)
2 July 2019 – Education in Argentina, Argentina–Cuba relations
Argentine Education Minister Alejandro Finocchiaro, who strongly condemned a school in Chaco Province for displaying a Cuban flag and displaying pictures of Che Guevara, says the school "has no supervision" and that they are "indoctrinating children with communism and totalitarian and populist governments". He also added in an interview on state TV that the school will be reviewed. (La Nación) (Clarín)
28 June 2019 – China–Holy See relations
The Vatican asks China's communist government to stop intimidating Catholic clergy who want to remain unequivocally loyal to the pope and refuse to sign ambiguous official registration forms. (Reuters)
2 June 2019 –
During his visit to Romania, Pope Francis apologizes to the Roma people on behalf of the Catholic Church and asks forgiveness for "all those times in history when we have discriminated, mistreated or looked askance at you." He also beatifies seven Eastern Catholic church bishops who were jailed for treason and tortured under Communist rule. All died in confinement and were buried in secret. (Reuters) (BBC)

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