Liberationism is an ideology that developed in Namor in the late 19th century. It is mainly based on the ideas of Cho Chunguk and Antelope Yunglang, two intellectuals who founded the Liberationist Party of Namor.
Liberationism seeks to achieve the liberation of the developing world — known by Liberationists as the Third World — from industrialized imperialist countries, and the establishment of a democratic and egalitarian new world order led by Third World countries. Namorese Liberationists are influenced by Namorese nationalism, which they view as a subset of Third World internationalism; they also see Namor as the starting point of the "Third World Revolution" that will usher in the new world order.
Like many other self-described revolutionary ideologies, such as syndicalism and communism, Liberationism has experienced many reinterpretations by theoreticians in order to address perceived inadequacies of the original ideology or apply the ideology to the conditions of a particular region. Many variants of Liberationism exist because of this.
- 1 History
- 2 Concepts
- 3 List of Liberationist political parties
Third World Revolution
The Liberationists divided Esquarium into three worlds — the First World consisting of industrialized imperialist powers, the Second World consisting of lesser imperialist powers, and the Third World consisting of underdeveloped countries - arguing that international relations since the 19th century have been shaped by the exploitation of underdeveloped nations by imperialists countries, as well as competition among imperialist countries for the wealth of the underdeveloped countries. Imperialist exploitation created the Third World, while competition between imperialists separated the Second World from the First World.
The Liberationists argued that the "Three Worlds Order" will eventually collapse from a global revolution led by Third World countries, known in Liberationist jargon as the "Third World Revolution." Such a revolution will be enabled as the Third World industrializes, gaining access to technologies that were previously exclusive to the peoples of the First World. How the Third World Revolution will progress has been a subject of debate among Liberationist theoreticians; the official position of the Liberationist Party of Namor is that the Third World Revolution will be marked by the slow decline of first and second world countries, resulting in a multipolar world.
Early Namorese Liberationists considered Namor to be the impetus of the Third World Revolution. Cho Chunguk classified Namor as a Third World country on the grounds that Namorese dynasties never engaged in imperial conquest as systematically as their First and Second World counterparts, and most of Namorese society remained agrarian while First and Second World countries underwent rapid industrialization. However, Cho argued that Namor enjoys a unique position among Third World countries, as its large population and abundance in natural resources put it in a better condition to industrialize and support the rest of the Third World in overthrowing the Three Worlds Order; therefore, the Namorese Revolution must succeed in order for the Third World Revolution to succeed. This view is still supported by the modern Liberationist Party of Namor but is received less enthusiastically by Liberationist parties elsewhere.
Rejection of First World Revolution
Liberationism rejects the concept of "First World Revolution," or the possibility of revolutions taking place in First World countries. In his essay Can the First World Revolt?, Cho criticized the notion that the global revolution can be led by the First World, let alone begin in the First World.
"The conditions of the First and Third Worlds are fundamentally different. The First World are majority bourgeois states; their peoples have neither the experience nor will to understand revolutions and the factors that drive them. That is not to say there are people in the First World who sympathize with the plight of the oppressed, but when forced to choose between transforming their sympathy into a force for real change and indulging in their current situation out of concern for their well-being, they will choose the latter in a heartbeat."
For a time, the Namorese Liberationists refused to establish relations with left-wing parties in First World countries, describing them as "pseudo-revolutionaries" and "reformers within the bourgeoisie." But under Kong Jo, the party softened its hostile attitude towards the international left, joining the Ainin-based Alliance of Esquarian Socialists. Kong stuck with the Liberationist belief that "revolution is an intrinsically Third World act," but "progressive peoples around the world achieve common goals through different means."
Union of the Five Classes
According to Cho, the Third World Revolution was being delayed by three factors - efforts by the First World to divide the Third World, the unwillingness of the Second World to side with the Third World, and the rule of the Third World by reactionary ruling classes, which includes monarchs, large industrialists, and landowners. Cho called the reactionary classes "useful idiots of the First World...knowingly or unknowingly aiding the First World in the exploitation of the Third World's people and resources," adding that the First World managed to manipulate the reactionaries by controlling them economically.
Cho's solution to the rule by reactionary classes is a united front between the working class, peasantry, intelligentsia, petite bourgeoisie and national bourgeoisie - which he considered to be the five "revolutionary classes" in society. The Liberationists held a more positive view of the bourgeoisie than most communists and syndicalists; while associating the haute bourgeoisie with the reactionary classes, they regarded the petite and national bourgeoisie as revolutionary classes due to their exploitation by large industrialists and foreign imperialists respectively. As a result of this, Cho argued that the Liberationists should welcome the petite and national bourgeoisie into its ranks; however, he warned against allowing both groups to dominate the party on the grounds that the bourgeoisie have some connections to the reactionary classes that prevent them from leading the revolution.
Antelope Yunglang's theory on the devolution of power divided the history of the world into three stages - theocracy (authority of religion), monarchy (authority of monarchs) and democracy (authority of the masses). Antelope claimed that while most countries in the world were transitioning from monarchy to democracy, they did not achieve true democracy because they transferred authority to the masses without eliminating the haute bourgeoisie; consequently, they became "bourgeois democracies" where most people had the right to exercise political power but not the ability to do so, since all power remained under the control of the bourgeoisie.
Liberationism regards "people's democracy" - where the people have both the right and ability to exercise political power - as the ultimate form of government in the world. In Antelope's view, since people's democracies cannot coexist with the bourgeoisie and the elimination of the bourgeoisie is a long process, people's democracies cannot be realized immediately after the revolutionaries seize power. He argued that a people's democracy in Namor could be realized through a four-step process, which he called Four Stages of the Revolution.
- First Stage (Insurrection) - The revolutionary classes, led by the Liberationist Party, seizes power from the reactionaries and establishes a people's republic.
- Second Stage (Consolidation) - The Liberationists retains dictatorial powers in order to root out residual reactionaries. The bourgeoisie is eliminated as a class.
- Third Stage (Development) - Direct elections are held beginning at the local level. The party dispatches officers to the local districts in order to prepare the people for self-government.
- Fourth Stage (People's Democracy) - Elections are held in all three administrative levels (local, regional and national). The people are not only aware of their rights but are able to exercise them effectively. With the people able to govern themselves, the mission of the revolutionary vanguard is complete.
Role of the Liberationist Party
The Liberationist Party of Namor saw itself as the vanguard of the revolution. Both Cho and Antelope touted the necessity of a vanguard that would lead the revolutionary classes in overthrowing the reactionary classes and establishing a people's republic. Cho claimed that centuries of rule by the reactionary classes made a significant portion of the masses "politically unconscious;" consequently, only the most politically conscious members of the masses had the expertise and knowledge to lead a revolution.
After Antelope became party chairman, he reevaluated the role of the Liberationist Party, specifically to address concerns that the party's embrace of vanguardism could lead to elitism. He introduced the concept of "populist vanguardism," claiming that while the Liberationist Party's role in leading the revolution is "indispensable," it must also "inundate itself in the masses" so that "the will of the people and the parties are one and the same." During the first years of the People's Republic, the party expanded its role in every aspect of Namorese life, setting up party committees in factories, farms, schools, and neighborhoods. The party also regulated spiritual affairs, stamping out religious institutions that did not receive approval from the party.
The Liberationists placed a strong emphasis on the supremacy of the party. During the era of one-party rule, all major governmental institutions such as the Central Council and Presidency-General were subordinate to the party, despite their constitutional roles as the governing bodies of the state. While control of the military was officially transferred to the state after the PRN was founded, it still had to answer to the party rather than the state.
Independence is a major concept in Liberationism, although theorists have developed various interpretations of its actual meaning. Antelope Yunglang argued that First World imperialism developed in three stages - economic dependence, political dependence and cultural dependence. It was thus necessary for Third World nations to develop economic, political and cultural independence in order to be considered truly independent. While political independence could be readily achieved by seizing power from the imperialists or their reactionary allies, the process of achieving economic and cultural independence could last very long depending on a country's conditions.
Antelope viewed foreign trade as an "extension of imperialism to keep the Third World economically enslaved" and envisioned an autarkic system where Namorese were economically self-sufficient. Under his rule, Namor expelled foreign industries and limited trade to a few countries that the government recognized as "anti-imperialist." Trade was restricted even further during the Green Fever when the government banned all foreign imports, although trade continued in the black market. The Liberationists abandoned their autarkic policies during the secretaryship of Antelope Gelai, who claimed that trade could coexist with the principle of economic independence so long as it was mutually beneficial.
Besides emphasizing economic independence, the Namorese Liberationists viewed cultural independence as important on the grounds that it prevented the imperialists from imposing their culture on the Third World. Institutional religion with a hierarchical leadership structure and codified rules was seen as a major export of First World imperialism. In Namor, Apostolic Catholicism was regarded by the Liberationists as an arm of Luziycan imperialism and suppressed in the aftermath of the civil war, while Kansism, an indigenous syncretic religion, was treated more leniently by the Liberationists due to their Namorese origins and contributions to progressive thought (the Liberationists traced some of their ideas back to the Chen Minko Rebellion, while Antelope, whose father took part in the rebellion, was a former Kansist himself).
Nationalism and internationalism
Liberationism asserts that whether nationalism and internationalism are contradictory to each other depends on the meaning of nationalism; in other words, nationalism, and internationalism are not inherently contradictory in certain conditions. The Namorese Liberationists considered themselves to be both Namorese nationalists and "Third World internationalists." Antelope claimed Namorese nationalism was a subset of Third World internationalism.
"I am Namorese; I come from an ancient yet backward nation of the Third World. As a nationalist, I believe the ethnicities of Namor share the same nation and fate, and I yearn for their liberation. As an internationalist, I believe the peoples of the Third World - including the Namorese people - share a common enemy and goal, and I yearn for their liberation as well."
In Namor, the Liberationists initially held Namorese nationalism and Third World internationalism in equal regard, but under Kong Jo started to emphasize Namorese nationalism more. The shift towards nationalism is said to have been influenced by three factors - improving relations with non-Third World countries, tensions with Luziyca and prospects of a peaceful reunification with Peitoa.
Cho, Antelope and other leaders of the Namorese Liberationists described socialism as a component of Liberationism and the economic ideology of the Liberationist Party. Liberationism views capitalism as an instrument of the First World to sustain its control over the Third World; it regards socialism as a prerequisite to popular control of the economy, which in turn leads to economic independence.
The Liberationists were initially in favor of workers' control and experimented with workers' councils in the Namorese Civil War, mandating that all towns and villages controlled by the party be governed by councils made up of democratically elected workers. But as the war progressed, the party viewed the workers' councils as untenable and started supporting state socialism. After the founding of the PRN, the government nationalized large industries and natural resources, arguing that state ownership was necessary to "maintain national cohesion amid imperialist threats of counter-revolution while protecting the working people."
List of Liberationist political parties
In Namor, there are two parties that officially adhere to Liberationism — the Liberationist Party of Namor and the Namorese Revolutionary Liberationist Movement, a splinter group which accuses the Liberationist Party of Namor of revisionism. The LPN is part of the official opposition, while the NRLM is not represented at the national level.
The Liberationist Party of Namor is the largest of all Liberationist parties, with a total of over 27 million registered members as of 2015.
- Association for Reformatory Vanguardism (semang telabayangkaykaku Sem-Te)