On February 2, 1922, 100 years ago, the rebellion of the Red Guerrilla Battalion of the North, which became known as the “Pork Mutiny” started. It was a very significant rebellion, so below we publish a statement from the Maoist Committee in Finland.
Proletarians of all countries, unite!
LONG LIVE THE 100TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE PORK MUTINY!
100 years ago, on February 2nd, 1922, the expedition of Red Guerrilla Battallion of the North, known as the “Pork Mutiny”, was initiated. It was a short but valuable expedition that ended one week later, on February 10th. It was named after speeches that were held standing on top of pork fat boxes, and also as the masses suffering from the worst poverty got more pork after expropriating it. The rebellion originated at a log site in Lapland near the Russian border. It was shaped into practice by Jahvetti Moilanen, the political commissar of Battalion, who was appointed by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Finland. The glory of the rebellion is not in the slightest dimmed by the fact that that person later capitulated to Finnish nationalism.
The first lesson of the Pork Mutiny is that firmly grasping proletarian internationalism the masses can be mobilized to revolutionary armed struggle.
Let us begin with the background: 1) the Great Wave of World Revolution 1916–1923, 2) the defeat of the Workers’ Revolution in Finland, 1918, and founding of the Communist Party of Finland in the August of the same year, 3) the white Finnish intervention wars in Soviet Karelia, 4) the worsening of the deprivation and poverty of the working masses.
In the log sites of the North-East Finland, the fierce economic offensive of capitalism, accompanied by frantic white terror, as part of the strife for capitalist ”stabilization”, was felt very heavily by the workers, who were typically semiproletarians. On the other hand, the whites also executed counterrevolutionary operations behind the borders in Soviet Karelia, which even more agitated the masses, who felt that power as their own, remembering also their own revolutionary experience four years earlier.
In those conditions, the CPF succeeded in raising hundreds of workers inside the Finnish borders to defend the dictatorship of the proletariat with arms in hand, in service of the Word Revolution. They struck the rear of the white interventionists, while at the same time the Red Army of Workers and Peasants was fighting it at the actual front.
The task was not easy, as the daring of the workers was still depressed after the defeat in the Civil War. The rampaging white terror also added to this. It demanded great proletarian class courage and good understanding of the masses to be able to mobilize the masses again to armed struggle and even purely with the unselfish aim to defend the dictatorship of the proletariat in a foreign country. The Party’s succes in this is a notable example of the strength of proletarian internationalism and the internationalist heroism of the Finnish people.
We, who today pledge loyalty to the Communist Party of Finland, must remember that revolutionary daring and the spirit of proletarian internationalism, which guided the Red Guerrilla Battallion of the North.
100 years ago Soviet Russia was the centre and base of support of the World Revolution, as was correctly understood in the Founding Statement of the CPF. Merely its existence was, in itself, propaganda for the overthrow of reactionary order, not to mention of help in arms, logistics, finance, diplomacy etc. etc., which it offered. The country of Lenin and Stalin was undermining the capitalist world system day by day, and that is why the Finnish whites – loyal to the infamous anti-Soviet order of day by the butcher Mannerheim – wanted to destroy it. That is why for us, the defence of the dictatorship of the proletariat in Russia was utterly important work in favour of revolution also in our own country.
Today, the development of contradictions on world level guides us to pay our proletarian internationalist attention especially to the oppressed nations of the Third World in Latin America, Asia and Africa, and also in Europe. The national liberation movements in the oppressed nations operate inside the International Communist Movement forming its base, and the weakest link of imperialism is found in the oppressed nations, whose population constitutes not only the majority of mankind, but also of its most oppressed part. The masses in Finland can be mobilized to revolution only, if we keep that fact clear in mind and make it known to the masses. This corresponds to the only Marxist, Marxist-Leninist-Maoist tactics.
Those, who do not educate the masses in proletarian internationalism, inevitably slide into pessimism and opportunism and lose the masses. Lenin has taught that the struggle against opportunism is inseparable from the struggle against imperialism and that without that struggle, it is impossible to go to the deepest and broadest masses, it is impossible to make the revolution. The history of Finnish revisionism and opportunism shows this law very clearly. The importance of proletarian internationalism is the first lesson of the Pork Mutiny.
The second lesson of the Pork Mutiny is that the proletariat can succeed in armed struggle only by fighting in its own way.
The Pork Mutiny was a political, military and moral success. The Red Guerrilla Battallion of the North did not lose a single battle, which scared the Finnish reaction very badly. The triumphant white power had imagined that it succeeded to crush the workers’ power for good, but less than four years after its temporary defeat it had to see that it was not so. What is more, it had to retreat from its own interventions and subordinate to peace with the Soviet Union for nearly 20 years. The reaction, in fact, had to recognize that it had to fight not only the great Red Army, but also the workers of its own country, who would threaten it with a revolution in its rear, if it tries to shake the Soviet power.
The fear of revolution was one reason, why the Finnish bourgeoisie decided to make a fascist coup in the upcoming years. Without it, it would have been unable to provoke a war against the Soviet Union in 1939. It is known, how the Finnish People’s Government (the so-called ”Terijoki Government”) enjoyed support of the masses in the border-area villages, where red power was organized, and also in the capital Helsinki. Only through fascism the CPF was made weak enough and the workers forced to subjugate enough, so that the masses did not overthrow Ryti’s government and replace it with the People’s Government.
The military success of the Pork Mutiny was achieved mainly, because it was guided on the basis of correct principles. The Party understood that the action should be in guerrilla form, that with an inexperienced and militarily primitive mass the attacks should be made to the rear of the enemy and not try to face it with regular warfare on the front, as if they were equal. The Red Guerrilla Battallion of the North skillfully manipulated the enemy’s knowledge of the revolutionary masses and used surprise. It applied destroying enemy one by one, being inferior in total, but superior in each individual battle and thus being superior in total. It acted with restraint, avoiding overextension, which even in general is fateful, and even more fateful with an inexperienced and even partly undisciplined mass. It advanced with rapid, determinate blows, without stopping to defend piece of land. Thus it succeeded to hold initiative for the whole time. Strictly militarily speaking, the key to this was understanding the guerrilla warfare.
If we compare this to the Civil War of 1918, a significant difference is particularly in the warfare. For the Reds, it was unfavourable that they strived for regular front-line warfare, to face the enemy as equal and concentrated their attention to defence, which is, as Marx has said, the death of an armed uprising. The Pork Mutiny proved that the fateful mistake was corrected. On the other hand, if we compare to the Resistance in the Continuation War, the difference is in mobilizing the masses. The Resistance was heroic and sacrificing, but it could not play a big role, because the CPF was unable to mobilize the broad masses to it.
The balance of the most important and greatest experiences of armed struggle of the Finnish proletariat point out the merits of the Pork Mutiny. It confirms that the success in revolutionary warfare requires mobilizing the masses to guerrilla war. Chairman Mao, who was developed the military theory and practice of the international proletariat – the People’s War – has given strategic significance to the guerrilla war waged by the masses, whereas earlier it was merely complementary sidenotes to regular warfare, as was also the case with the Pork Mutiny, which, as part of the whole, played minor, complementary and supporting role to the main struggle waged by the Red Army. The strategic significance of the guerrilla war does not negate the fact that the war will be finalized by means of regular warfare, as was the case in China, but through it the political and military conditions for finalizing the war will be created. Expanding guerrilla war and establishing the isles of new power, the bases of support, following its fluidity, advance the arrival of the revolutionary high tide, ie. taking power in the whole country.
We, who today pledge loyalty to the Communist Party of Finland, must remember the success that can be achieved through mobilizing the masses to guerrilla war and the strategic significance of the question. The memory of the Pork Mutiny commands us to hold high, defend and mainly apply the People’s War, the universal doctrine of which we must concretize to the particularities of the Finnish revolution, ie. apply creatively and not mechanically.
Those, who do no accept this, sink into the revisionist thesis of ”peaceful accumulation of forces”. They are not able to draw closer to the revolutionary high tide nor mobilize the masses to anything else but electoral farce. Or more precisely – if we look at the declining voter turn-out among the proletariat, the avoiders of the armed struggle are not able to mobilize the masses even to the elections. It is the reality in the current moment of the World Revolution: the strategic offensive. The masses are not able to find any satisfaction to their will in the predominant order, and that is why they can be effectively organized only to the struggle against it, which can only occur with arms in hand and in prolonged war, in which with more People’s War comes greater incorporation of the masses. The military theory and practice of the international proletariat, ie. the People’s War, its universality, is the second lesson of the Pork Mutiny.
The third lesson of the Pork Mutiny is that the Communist Party is needed as the general staff of the proletariat.
The main lesson of the Finnish Workers’ Revolution was that the old social-democratic party was insufficient, that a Marxist-Leninist Communist Party of a new type was needed, a party that would concentrate all its attention to making the revolution through armed way. The successful initiation and development of the Pork Mutiny proved the adherence to that correct line. Without it, it would have been impossible to evaluate the situation correctly, to mobilize the masses, to develop warfare under the guidance of just and correct political and military principles, to crush the erroneous positions in the two-line struggle etc.
Without the CPF, we would not have had the Pork Mutiny, and without it, the whites would have remained more eager in their aggressions against the dictatorship of the proeltariat. For longer time and more seriously they would have hindered the socialist construction led by comrade Stalin, which created important material conditions for the invincibility of the dictatorship of the proletariat in the Second World War and, through its success, the establishing of the democratic, socialist camp covering one third of mankind. Of course, we must not nationalistically brag and exaggerate that it was in any way decisively thanks to the work of the Finnish comrades, but it is a fact that the Pork Mutiny contributed to the advance of World Revolution fulfilling its small part, and it is an object of our pride as their followers.
Those, who have betrayed Marxism-Leninism, have gone completely bankrupt. As a Marxist-Leninist party the CPF mobilized gigantic masses to struggle, but after the revisionist usurpation of power in the party following Khrushchov’s footsteps, one part of the party has openly denounced Communism and the other parts, which still today pose as Communist, have sunk to almost absolute insignificance. The correctness or not of the ideological and political line decide everything, as Chairman Mao has taught.
We, who today pledge loyalty to the Communist Party of Finland, must struggle for the reconstitution of the CPF as a Marxist-Leninist-Maoist party with the universally valid contributions of Chairman Gonzalo, a militarized Communist Party of a new type. Without such a party, it is impossible to mobilize the masses to the People’s War as part of and in service of the World Revolution. It it the third lesson of the Pork Mutiny.
Celebrate the 100 years since the Pork Mutiny through struggling for the reconstitution of the CPF for People’s War as part of and in service of the World Revolution!
Long live the Pork Mutiny!
People’s War until Communism!
For the reconstitution of the CPF!
Maoist Committee in Finland