Statements of support from Sri Lanka for Joseph Scalice

By our correspondents
31 August 2020

The World Socialist Web Site is publishing letters of support from Sri Lanka for historian Joseph Scalice, who was slanderously attacked by the founder of the Communist Party of the Philippines, Jose Maria Sison, over a lecture that he delivered on August 26 exposing the role of the CPP and its Maoist ideology.

On the day prior to the lecture, the CPP took the extraordinary step of publishing a special edition of its newspaper Ang Bayan devoted entirely to an interview with Sison denouncing Scalice as a paid CIA agent, for which he provided not a shred of evidence.

Sison was reacting in particular to the parallel that Scalice had drawn out between the CPP’s support for the fascistic Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and the support of an earlier Stalinist party for the Marcos dictatorship. In his lecture, Scalice comprehensively refuted Sison’s blatant lie that the CPP had never supported Duterte and established that the party’s repeated orientation to bourgeois politicians stemmed from the counter-revolutionary Stalinist perspective of the two-stage theory.

We call on our readers to come to the defence of Scalice by sending statements of support to the WSWS. By establishing the historical truth about the treacherous record of the CPP in the Philippines and the underlying reasons for its betrayals, Scalice has done a service to the working class in that country and internationally.

The following statements come from Sri Lanka:

Dr. Luxman Nugapitiya from Sinhala Department in University of Peradeniya said:

“Historian Joseph Scalice delivered a lecture titled ‘First as tragedy, second as farce: Marcos, Duterte, and the Communist Parties of the Philippines,’ dealing with brutal rule of Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte, hosted by Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.

“It explained how Stalinism and Maoism has propped up bourgeois politics for decades. It also exposed the disastrous role played by Maoist Communist Party in bringing dictator Duterte to office in 2016.

“The founder of the Communist Party of the Philippines, Jose Maria Sison, made fraudulent interviews and baseless threatening statements through the media against Dr. Scalice days before the lecture. I reject all those. As an academic who cherishes democracy and justice, I stand for the right to the expression of the truth and also vehemently denounce anti-social remarks made by Maoist Sison against Dr. Scalice.”

Journalist and writer Wimal Ranatunga stated:

“The role played by the leader of the Communist Party of the Philippines, Jose Maria Sison is anti-social and it reflects the reactionary path to which Stalinist parties worldwide have turned. The exposures made by historian Scalice are important. It is clear that leaders of the Communist Parties have supported Marcos, who carried out dictatorial rule by imposing marshal law for 20 years, as well as the dictator Duterte, who came to power in 2016 in Philippines.

“The Stalinist Communist Party makes a baseless accusation that historian Scalice is a pathologically rabid anti-communist and CIA psywar agent. I oppose that accusation outright as the provocative remarks of Maria Sison are against the freedom of expression and the right to carry out political work.”

Sampath Wijesinghe, Attorney at Law, commented:

“The lecture done by Joseph Scalice is a great historical point of view in respect of the revealing betrayal of the labour movement by Stalinism in the Philippines and in the world. Particularly in the midst of the developing class struggles, it is essential to elaborate and investigate the roots of the development and decline of Stalinism, the labour bureaucracy and trade union leaderships. Therefore, this valuable lecture will be a greater tool to sharpen the class consciousness of revolutionary workers. Finally, his lecture will be an important step regarding the establishment of the Trotskyist section in the Philippines.”