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“Heroic” forays of “Leninists” from “Lotta Comunista”



We are all familiar, some more, some less, with the organization around the newspaper Lotta Comunista (“Communist Struggle”), which is ostentatiously called (although this wording is now only found in their newspaper) Gruppi Leninisti della Sinistra Comunista (Leninist Groups of the Communist Left). We have all seen them lined up outside universities or factories, handing out leaflets or trying to sell their newspapers. Their widespread presence in the cities where they operate makes them almost omnipresent in their activity of recruiting new supporters, which they often carry out among  young people, claiming to be the only revolutionary Marxist and anti-Stalinist organization in Italy; but many have also seen them, in the name of their “Circoli operai” (Workers' Circles), organizing food parcel collections for “families in need”, following the example of the clergy, and inviting people to participate in their activities, which also include Italian language courses for foreigners. In short, instead of… book and rifle (a reference to the fascist motto of the 1920s “Book and rifle, that's the perfect fascist”)… book and food parcel. Moreover, they declare themselves as part of the Communist Left, while hiding their origins in the anarchist and resistance movement and, of course, not explaining what this declaration means.  

However, the events of the last few days have shown that it is not just intellectual propaganda and peaceful voluntary work what do these people, but also much more straightforward activism. On 22 May this year, further proof was given of how a confused political line characterized by a complete denial of dialectical and scientific analysis of the situation and of the existence of a real “national” question – as in the case of the Palestinians – leads to actions that are demagogically labeled “Bolshevik”. These bravado attacks by the LC squads tarnish the name of the party of Lenin and Trotsky, the victors of the October Revolution, the architects of the Communist International. A group of about a dozen militants belonging to this organization invaded the University of Milan (UniMi) to distribute a leaflet (against those demonstrating in favor of Palestine and accused of “nationalism”, complicity with the bourgeoisie, etc.) despite the resistance of the students occupying the university. According to a member of the Student Community for Palestine (Comunità Studentesca per la Palestina) (1), the LC militants were to use the opposition to the distribution of the leaflet as a pretext to launch a brutal attack. The consequences? One of the students hit in the clash was taken to hospital, while the police from the General Investigations and Special Operations Division, (DIGOS), identified and charged 8 LC militants (the “ready for action” police always arrive late on scene: they don't stop the beatings but manage to stop the “culprits”).

The following day, after the news of the brawl had spread, a group of LC members were branded “Zionists” by students at the Sapienza University of Rome, and in response they decided to take rough action again and instigated a new confrontation. In short, two brawls in two days. The bourgeois press has had the opportunity to point out that the name “Lotta Comunista” never appears in the latest official communiques of the students, but only denounces the “squadrist and Zionist form” of the attacks: it is clear to the press that the students do not want to spread the association of the word “communist” with what organizes such actions (the journalists, on the other hand, are eager to suggest that this is precisely the degenerate behavior of the communists).

We cannot lean towards the view, as some do, that there is a clear “Zionist” intent behind these attacks. Instead, it is clear that the LC militants believe that their final solution to the Palestinian question (let's wait for the proletarian revolution... it will be the solution to all evil) is so correct that those who oppose their propaganda must be silenced, even by coercive methods. A legitimate and widespread comment on the wretchedness of these squadrist actions is precisely that there is nothing communist about them. We certainly do not deny that violence is part of history and society, and hence of the class struggle. We claim revolutionary violence, we have never hidden it, but in the historical context referred to by the Communist Left of Italy, Lenin and Trotsky and before them Marx and Engels, which is far removed from the demagogic “Communist” Left of the LC militants. The positions put forward by LC, which, as we have seen, are “defended” by kicking and punching students protesting against the massacre of Palestinians in Gaza, effectively deny that there is a “national question” for the Palestinians and that the oppression the Palestinians suffer at the hands of Israel and all the states that have always feared the contagion of the struggle of the Palestinian proletarians in their own countries, deserves no protest, no expression of solidarity with the oppressed. Lotta Comunista, in connection with this particular case of the massacre of Palestinians in Gaza, in one of its leaflets responding to the skirmishes erupting in the universities, signed “University Leninist Committees” (Comitati Leninisti Universitari), while recalling that Italian universities collaborate not only with the Israeli regime, but also with equally murderous regimes such as the North Korean and Afghan regimes led by the Taliban, quotes the well-known intellectual Italo Calvino - a former partisan, anarchist individualist, member of the Stalinist Italian Communist Party, a supporter of the USSR until the Russian intervention in Budapest in 1956, and then a returning anarchist – who, in a letter to a Palestinian journalist in October 1968, “deplored the fact that the supporters of the Palestinian cause do not take into account the most cruel and inhuman persecutions under the Nazis and much earlier, for centuries and centuries, suffered by the Jews, while at the same time seeing with certainty the solution to the Palestinian problem in a revolutionary way both in the Arab world and in the Israeli masses” (2). At that time, most intellectuals claimed to be “revolutionaries” and this generated such great sympathy around them that they secured the sale of many copies of their works, a prominent place in widely sold newspapers, and literary prizes of all kinds from the “enlightened” bourgeoisie. To quote Calvino in this sense obviously implies that the perspective promoted by the LC is that of bourgeois intellectuals who never speak of a proletarian revolution, led by the communist party, for the overthrow of the bourgeois state and the establishment of the proletarian dictatorship, but of a revolution of “consciousness”, which is the most unrealistic thing that exists in the real world.

In none of its published leaflets and communiques does Lotta Comunista deny that it was its militants who had started these clashes. It only claims that their actions are “Bolshevik” and “Leninist”: more precisely, it has defined its position as “openly anti-nationalist” and has described its opponents as “social-nationalist left”. In this respect, for example, it claims that the suspension of collaboration between Italian universities and Israeli universities and military companies is an act of… “nationalism”. Their 'internationalism' is so boundless that they manage to ignore not only who is dropping bombs, but also the very fact that… any bombs are dropped at all.

It was therefore not difficult for some political groups supporting the anti-Israel student protests to declare that the LC militants have nothing communist in their behavior and their bravura actions, although even these groups, such as the Communist Youth Front (Fronte della Gioventù Comunista), cannot claim to be Marxist, given that since its formation in 2012 it has always praised the USSR and its satellites as socialist countries betrayed by Gorbachev's “revision”… (3).

When it comes to the revision and falsification of Marxism, there is quite a competition going on between Lotta Comunista and its critics!



(1) In an interview:

(2) Cf.

(3) Cf. Document of the 2nd FGC Congress, December 2016, Part II: “The counter-revolutions of 1989-1991 led to the demise of the bloc of socialist countries with the Soviet Union at its head, around which a progressive movement developed that advanced across the planet towards decolonization and the liberation of peoples from the domination of imperialism. This marked the end of a historical phase characterized by the clash of ‘two worlds’, in which two opposing and irreconcilable models and visions of society stood in opposition to each other: socialism on the one hand and capitalism on the other. The end of the Soviet Union, the first socialist country in human history, was the result of a gradual revision of Marxist-Leninist ideology and of some theoretical and political errors and shortcomings that emerged from the 20th Congress of the CPSU (from the theory of peaceful coexistence to the implementation of economic reforms that introduced market elements into the socialist economy), to which the international communist movement, starting with the communist parties that led the building of socialism in the countries of the East, failed to respond promptly.”


May, 26th 2024



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