General Motion Approved by the IVth Congress of the Radical Party
General Motion Approved by the IVth Congress of the Radical Party
(Florence, November 3,4,5, 1967)
ABSTRACT: The Congress in Florence is the first of the statutory congresses to be held annually and at a fixed date (the first three consecutive holidays in November). In its final document it makes the first Radical analysis of the degenerative features that were by now beginning to characterise Italian political life despite the hopes that had been inspired by the Center-Left coalition and, on the contrary, in great part due to this formula for government by which the Christian Democrats actuated their "conquest" of the State and its institutions. While remaining distinctly opposed to the governing formula and severely criticising the Socialists for letting themselves be trapped in the Christian Democrats designs, the Radical Party also denounces the serious errors of the opposition left-wing that is not fulfilling its duties and already indicates clearly its desire to pursue a policy of subservience to the Christian Democrats.
Ferruccio Parri brings his greetings to the Congress.
("The Battles, the Victories and the Proposals of the Radicals as Seen in the Documents of Their Congresses and Their Statutes" - November 1985 - Edited by Maurizio Griffo - Pamphlet Published by the Treasury of the Radical Party)
The IVth Congress of the Radical Party, meeting in Florence the 3-4-5 of November and taking as its theme "The Left Against the Regime", having heard the report of the party's national secretary and the reports on the fundamental issues of civil rights and after ample debate in which comrades from other lay and democratic groups also participated,
affirms that it is the essential task of the party to create a reformative, revolutionary alternative based on lay and libertarian structures and objectives.
Anti-clericalism and anti- militarism are the characteristic instruments, unsurpassable and sufficient, of this phase of the Radical's fight to construct a new society and to defeat the clerical regime, interclassist corporative and repressive, which already forms a large part of the Italian national State. Among political organisations, only the Radical Party today indicates the desire to make available for the entire democratic and class movement these indispensable instruments of struggle which have been ignored or rejected by the leaders of the left for the last twenty years.
Anti-nationalism and anti-authoritarianism are the necessary points of reference to make this fight into same one (and not merely connected to it) that is being waged by strong Radical minorities throughout the world in whether in bourgeois societies of political democracies, or in those that are in the forefront of the anti-imperialist and anti-capitalist fights for economic development and authentic and full civil independence, or in other state-capitalist societies which are also authoritarian;
notes that the Italian situation is extremely serious. Even that degree of constitutional liberty that seemed guaranteed by a regime of limited political democracy is today in danger. While the process of constant and progressive detachment of the imperialist and capitalistic forces from the political democracy (historically imposed on them by the great struggles of the democratic, socialistic and workers movements) is taking one alarming proportions and clamorous aspects everywhere, the "first" among state powers is now becoming that which represses and conditions every most elementary and intimate human liberty; and when military and militarist forces are not admittedly "in charge", they make the claim to be so along with an aggressive minority of ideologues and technicians who trust in principle to the values of authority and authoritarianism.
In Italy the overbearing power of the clerical and class dictatorship offer incomparable opportunities and homogeneous structures that make one fear the proximity of a possible open rebellion against even the moderate institutional framework.
But even if this were not the case, the Congress of the Radical Party emphasises that the serious daily attacks on the civil rights of individuals and democratic organisations perpetrated by the State apparatus have been gaining strength in these years of the Center-Left coalition.
Therefor the IVth National Congress of the Radical Party warns the nation of a situation in which it is not possible not to give importance to political events that, within a few days, have revealed magistrates who receive the salaries of spies; police who systematically and provocatively use torture and falsehood;
agencies that are supposed to be "economically" public and productive and instead "produce" corruption, newspapers, parties, managerial classes who in turn corrupt, "socialist" ministers or union leaders of the "Marxist opposition" who interpret the needs of the proprietors of steam and the most rapacious and inhuman clerical inter-class operations: thieving and blackmailing generals; prefects and police chiefs and ministers of the interior who daily brandish the Fascist laws of 1931 even in the face of the Constitutional Court.
In conditions like these, the country's flight from "politics", that is from the leadership, cannot be attributed to the immaturity of the country itself or to a lack of democratic conscience on the part of class movement, but only to the progressively more serious exhaustion of the political struggle in the technicalities and "efficiency" that are nothing other than the mask behind which are hiding immobility, corruption of the opposition and conservatism;
Maintains that the Center-Left coalition accelerates and aggravates this process. The Center-Left allows the dominant oligarchy a power of initiative and an efficiency that a clear confrontation, democratic or not, with the country's alternative democratic forces would certainly put into crisis.
Nevertheless, the division of the Socialist movement - however old and sclerotic it may be - is a serious error. But it is not only the mistaken (and evident) choices of the PSU and the PRI (Partito Repubblicano Italiano) that make the Italian left into a paralysed group that is often controlled by the regime. The large leftist parties themselves of the parliamentary opposition, at whose side the Radical Party in these last years has conducted and will conduct its fight against the Center-Left, are conditioned and often prisoners of state structures that are among the most essential for the present "constituted disorder".
The parliamentary opposition is rarely or only too marginally an expression of the vertical and rigorous struggle in the country for a democratic confrontation that offers alternatives. Taking part in, and often subservient participants of, the regime's structures, the leadership and the bureaucratic organisations of the left, even of the opposition, often appear as appendages of this State rather than the vanguard and the leadership of the democratic movement.
"Socialist" ministers of State or Communist "ministers" of the shadow government that tries to administer in an authoritarian way the monopoly of the opposition are, considered from the standpoint of the objective class power situation of our society, faint-hearted and self-deluded hostages that the left offers to the clerical inter-class enemy.
conscious of this reality, it formally takes note of and decidedly denounces it. Just as decidedly it affirms, in the face of the danger and of speculative action to foster disunity and sectarianism, that this policy is not determined by the choice of political militants nor by the aspirations of the larger part of the leadership of the democratic and workers movement; that the PCI, the PSIUP (Partito Socialista Italiana Unita Proletaria), the PSU and the PRI cannot be reduced to the single reality of this policy; that not even in the national leadership of these parties is there a prevalence of bureaucratic and apparatus groups, however strong their presence may be. Among those in the government and in the parliamentary opposition who themselves apply the mistaken policies that the Radical Party rejects and opposes, it is not always or necessarily because of a conscious and definitive choice as much as it is due to an inadequate analysis and serious lack of contact with the places in the country where the
real class conflicts are taking place;
therefore confirms the political line that the Radical Party has been pursuing since 1963 against the policies of the Center-Left and against the dialogue and power-sharing with the clerical and inter-class forces that the parliamentary left, both of the government as well as the opposition, has been conducting in recent years.
Anti-clericalism and anti-militarism must find new forms, to be actuated above all from the bottom up, to unite Communists, Socialists, democrats, libertarians and Radicals of all generations and whatever pasts. Therefore the Radical Party invites all libertarian and lay forces to join in a political struggle that in itself will be an expression of profound renewal and hence of unity because of its chosen methods and structures.
For all the laity, all libertarians, all Socialists, the Radical Party must be - as it in fact is - the party of civil rights, of liberty in and by labour, and of human emancipation: such are, already today, all those who are disposed to see democratic unity and the anti-clerical and anti-militarist struggle nullify the still persisting differences of organisation and membership as discriminatory and disuniting;
therefore it indicates the following objectives to its active members, its federated organisations and its federal executive organs: 1) the conversion of military into civilian structures; 2) resignation from NATO; 3) demilitarisation of the police forces; 4) unilateral denunciation of the Concordat; 5) the confiscation of clerical and ecclesiastical property; 6) the instituting of divorce; 7) the assertion of a lay and libertarian sexual conscience.
The Radical Party proposes those same objectives, with the dialogue and the deep elaboration that can certainly strengthen them, as a motive for unity among the other organised forces of the left. The Congress firmly denies any and every ostensibly objective counter-position among gradualistic struggles (as long as they really are such), among even ephemeral reformist procedrues on the one hand and the direct, rigorous, constant action for wider and more general objectives. Finally, the Congress expresses its fraternal thanks to the comrades of the entire left wing who could not participate in the debate but who contributed to its success by helping in the preparations for it, in the subscriptions and self-financing, and in the numerous anti-clerical and anti-militaristic initiatives; it gives a mandate, finally, to the National Secretary, the National Headquarters and the federated organisations to give priority to the actuation of those struggles which, because of their form and content, accelerate the cr
eation of the federated party and surmount the old, still present, work and meeting structures.
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