[The following is an unauthorized draft translation from A Nova Democracy. — Frontlines ed.]
‘Take all the lands of large estates!’
MÁRIO LÚCIO DE PAULA | RAFAEL GOMES PENELAS – A Nova Democracia
The city of Januária in the North of Minas Gerais, received in the last 10 and 11 October, the 8th Congress of the League of Poor Peasants (LCP) North of Mines and southern Bahia.
THE BRAVE PEASANT PEOPLE
Since March it has not rained for most of the North of Minas Gerais and southern Bahia. The creations lose weight and the earth is only in clod. The reserves dwindle and many fields were lost. Through drought months of drought, this brave black people and peasant, like dry land, resists. Just one drop of water to get up and thrive.
Thus, the peasants – this backcountry people, the cerrado, the executioner and the savanna, the people who are mixing the quilombo remnants and indigenous peoples, who never lowered his head and resists the land facing the large estates and their gangs of gunmen, facing the persecution of the old state and its repressive forces, facing the antipovo government policies and opportunism – rose once again with their red flags and, under the scorching sun from 11 am, took to the streets of Januária, announcing with a large, vibrant demonstration on the morning of October 10th: we are completing the activities of the 8th Congress of the League of Poor Peasants of Northern Mines and Southern Bahia! Conquer Earth! Destroy the Latifúndio! Long live the Agrarian Revolution! Long live the workers and peasants Alliance!
At the invitation of the LCP, the newspaper New Democracy covered this important Congress which was attended by hundreds of peasants from different areas of the North of Minas Gerais and southern Bahia. Workers, students, teachers, intellectuals, professionals, union leaders, revolutionary activists, men and women, elderly and children made up the long lines of red flags and banners and heated up even more the paving of streets passed by.The people went out into the streets and at the doors of shops to see and receive the pamphlet.
AN OUTBREAK OF FIGHTING
‘Against the crisis: taking all the lands of large estates!’ It was the central slogan of the Congress. A large banner with these words opened the manifestation and the microphone, leaders and activists spoke to the people, who listened intently to the call of the peasants for the people to organize and struggle against rot of the old state. The LCP, which since its founding summons the people to boycott the electoral farce, reaffirmed its classist principles of struggle and demonstrated to the population that it is noting for years has been confirmed in practice: the PT is a party that governs for big bourgeoisie, landlordism and imperialism, presiding repression and genocide of peasants, indigenous and maroon, and hunger policy and squeeze the people.He denounced the crimes of large estates in the region and the peasant leader’s murder Cleomar Rodrigues, political coordinator of the LCP, on 22 October last year, by gunmen at the behest of landowners with the Civil Police agents coverage.
Head and raised flags, the peasants moved through the streets, organized and showing the public how people should act. Not accept injustice, not participate in the electoral farce and not fear the latifundia. Ahead of the demonstration, they were activists of the combatant youth, workers and peasants who, with their red flags together in one step, they were prepared not to fall into provocations of repression and landlordism, and also to defend the manifestation in the event of attempts of provocateurs and enemies of the people attacks.
Since the beginning of the march, police posted a cross car on the street blocking your path. Soon they echoed the voices of “Outside police!”, Forcing them to withdraw. In the city center, suddenly the line and columns of self-defense advanced to the head of the demonstration in battle array, marched toward the police cars and therefore under orders, returned to their position. It was a tremendous upheaval that raised the scorching temperature making the masses vibrate even more their songs of struggle and militant slogans.
Something different and new was in the air, and the people cheered. During the two days of the Congress, the public school where he was held and its surroundings were more attentive and eager anticipation.
The Congress was held in several stages. What preceded it was his preparation with meetings of leaders and activists in the areas organized by LCP, then shake in the areas and towns where the Support Committee to Fight for Earth held pamphlets and activities such as Montes Claros, the largest city North of Minas. There, the State University of Montes Claros (Unimontes), was carried out with great excitement shows photos of the peasant struggle, theater and debate. In Januária, it was also held great excitement and zoom zoom zoom Agrarian Revolution ran through the city.
AN IDEOLOGICAL STRUGGLE OVEN
On 10 and 11 took place the plenary sessions and meetings of elected delegates as representatives of areas to Congress.
Guests from around the country, including directors of LCPs from different regions, union leaders, activists of revolutionary organizations, democratic and people made their greetings to the 8th Congress. It was also marked by rich cultural activity, such as the presentation of the Theatre Group Serving the People, formed by young peasants, who presented a show about the struggle for land, the heroes of the Brazilian people and in honor of the peasant leaders Cleomar Rodriges and Renato Nathan. Representing all the fallen in the fight, the youth group Company matutos King Theatre peasants, Vanessa, area held a scenario that denounced the role of the bourgeois judiciary in the criminalization and punishment of the fighters of the people. The activities also counted on a beautiful presentation of a suit of Folia (Folia de Reis), the presentation of popular Marcinho musician Gaita and its Cybele daughter, afinadíssima duo of viola formed by the Maroons John and Damian, the guitar players of dual City Manga, Baden and Vandaime, among other attractions.
The session started on the afternoon of October 10 met at the sports court of the State Olegario Maciel School and reflected all reality and struggle of the North of Minas Gerais peasants and southern Bahia, as well highlighted one of the speakers: “scorching heat, one oven — a forging furnace both ideological and political “.
The central debate of the plenary highlighted as the 8th Congress took place at a crucial moment of the struggle of the peasants and the Brazilian people.The Congress was an old chant to combat response of fractions of single party of the ruling classes, the cackle of the opportunists occupying the old management rule – with its policy “adjustments”, misery, crunch, brutal repression against the people and national interests – and more declared extreme right, trying to ride the dissatisfaction of the masses in electioneering.
THE PATH IS THE AGRARIAN REVOLUTION!
The Congress of the LCP, with its slogan that against and face acute economic crisis, political, social and moral of this rotten state and its antipovo governments and country-selling, farmers should be organized and ready to take all the lands of large estates , said the real democratic and revolutionary way. The Agrarian Revolution is the only way to destroy and reduce to dust all the semi-feudal backwardness of Brazil, precisely because task of this magnitude can only be made by the peasant masses who, for centuries, has been crushed by the landowner-bureaucratic power, imperialism servant .
The 8th Congress and its discussions touched on crucial issues for the understanding of peasants, workers, revolutionaries, democrats and progressives on the need and the way to make the radical changes that our country needs so much to destroy the three exploration mountains weighing about our people: the large estates, the big bourgeoisie and imperialism.
Brazil has more than five thousand cities and 80% of them do not have more than 10 thousand inhabitants. They are rural towns where the masses are subjected centuries the semi-feudal relations of production. Hundreds of thousands of peasants and workers who live in these small and medium-sized cities are dragged by the “cats” (recruiters) of large agribusiness and longer reach should the passage, the Monday of the month and the pigsty they call accommodation, are paid to the worst food. Therefore, the claim to be opportunistic capitalist relations, is the old shed system.
Peasants are forcibly subjected to these conditions, and those who resist in their lands, are, day after day, harassed by large landowners, economically crushed, attacked by their bands of gunmen, forced to sell their land in exchange for almost nothing or are brutally killed and have their land swallowed by the landowners. Similarly, they suffer and are indigenous peoples and remnants of quilombo attacked everywhere.
What we were able to register and realize the 8th Congress – adding that experience with the Congress of LCPs already follow in previous years in the North of Minas Gerais and elsewhere – is that not only the LCP has matured and advanced in its construction, but developed, as well as developed the contradictions in our country, and prepared to respond and act as the intensification of these contradictions.
Those who were present there, were not asking or expecting anything from the old bourgeois-landlord state. Do not ask tarps or food baskets. Its leaders are revolutionary cadres, aware and tested in fights.
Plenary waged a major political and ideological battle to seek, from the speeches, reports and opinions, systematize the experience of the struggle of the militant peasant movement. One of the leaders of the LCP synthesized:
We do not intend to take over governments but destroy this old state. To gain strength, because we will not destroy the political and economic foundations overnight. Our struggle is prolonged. Let’s sweep the latifundia, give land to all peasants and with a real battle, where we are very well prepared, conquer the land!
Our report had the opportunity to cover not only the realization of the plenary, but everything that makes the Congress happen. The collective kitchen worked day and night to feed the hundreds of participants of the congress. The nursery, organized by young students and asked supporters not only cared, but organized the children to allow their mothers participate in discussions and activities. In closing, the kids also participated politically with a small jester tested with care and with the LCP flags painted by his own hand. All the while, a commission took care of the safety of Congress, guarding the school entries in which he was held and making custody overnight. Young students and peasants formed the commission agitation, which kept the spirits up during all activities, maintaining the tone of the songs and slogans. It grew the mass contingent that sought the organization and the struggle led by the LCP.Dozens of farmers have signed up an accreditation list for future land grab.
While the delegates elected as representatives of the areas were gathered discussing and systematizing the proposed organization would be approved in Congress, the ‘catch-fire’ troubled the plenary. Peasants gave live testimony of his reality. Spoken former squatters, the LCP fight pioneers; irrigation of Jaíba Project, which developed a great fight for peasants to take the land, the water and all that demand production; Lower Funda peasants denounced the deforestation that degrade their land and other farmers narrated their experiences and the struggle for production under one of the worst droughts in history in North Mine. They talked about how their lives have changed after the LCP started to organize their struggle. Denounced crimes of landlordism, the action of the gunmen, remembered the fallen heroes in the struggle for land and earned them honors.
Labor leaders and peasants discussed and approved a plan to raise a land made wave in the region and the importance and method to strengthen and boost the Worker-Peasant Alliance, a fundamental foundation for the advancement of agrarian revolution, for the conquest of the earth, bread and a New Democracy in Brazil. In an animated wheel, young people heard the watchful arguments of a leader of the Revolutionary Front for Defense of People’s Rights on the role of youth in the New Brazilian Democratic Revolution, theoretical problems and the revolution strategy in the world today.
A Congress peasant as the LCP is composed of several battles and debates that occur simultaneously and follow a concrete demand, which is the struggle to build a force to mobilize, politicize and organize the peasant masses in alliance with the working class in militant fight the conquest of land.