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The Left Movement and National Question: From Romanticism to Realism (With a Focus on Komala Organization)

Introduction Equality is one of the principles of democracy. The leftists’ belief in equality is the remarkable difference between Left and Right. From this viewpoint, it can be said that equality is not necessarily economic equality. So, democracy basically needs political equality and it has relation with its concept. In the line of the Left’s egalitarian view, the scope of the usage of justice or most of the social and political equalities have to be basically extended into socio-political relations among individuals, groups or nations too. Equality is a relative concept. According to Norberto Bobbio (2000), ‘when the equality principle is accepted, any plan for redistribution has to answer three questions: Distribution among which persons or groups, how much and what, and based on what criterion?’ (p. 89). Thus, the distribution is not just economic, and the distribution of political power also is one of the important distributive affairs. In this regard, the question is that in a world that political equality and consequently national equality is not possible and there is security view on a case, region or community, how the economic equality and so class equality is possible? About political rights, at least the nations can be equal, but economic equality is idealistic and also romantic. For this reason within the Left movement also based on the various conditions, the question of nationalism has adequately been regarded. Based on the equality idea, in this paper, the national question in Marxist theories and their revisions for the sake of accommodation with societies and also various countries’ nationalism, sometimes in the line of the nations’ equality and sometimes otherwise in the line of a nation’s domination (in multinational countries), is considered. From this angle, Kurdistan as a traditional, non-industrial society with a strong national movement is also regarded to see the situation of the Left movement there, and the 1 Correspondence author’s email: Sabah Mofidi 21 attempts that has been performed to accommodate Marxist theories to this society. The new Kurdish freedom movement has often tended towards the Left movement and has been affected by it because of its special capacities, especially defiance and defending the rights of the oppressed nations. For this reason, various leftist organizations and parties including the radicals emerged in Kurdistan that some of them separated their way from the mainstream of the Left movement in their relevant countries or moved in parallel to them and partly succeeded to accommodate the Left thought to the Kurdistan’s situation, while some others have sometimes been under the hegemony of the Left mainstream. In the Eastern Kurdistan, in Iran, while almost all political trends, organizations and parties have talked on the class, religious and national oppressions, in practice one of them has been more important for each party and has overcome on their opinions. For example, for the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI), national oppression, for Komala, class oppression, and for Maktab Qur’an, religious oppression has been in priority. The ideological hegemony, in the second and third ones led to their less attention to the national question so that they eventually themselves became one of the important barriers to resolving the Kurdish national question after the Iranian revolution, 1979. Whiles both the Islamic and communist ideologies insist on the equality of all nations. However, if the ideological aspects were notin hegemony and alsothe followers of them had comprehended the importance of the national question for removing inequality, they could have acted in favor of resolving the problem. Out of the above-mentioned three main political trends, this article focuses on Komala as a Marxist-Leninist organization and one of the main radical left organizations in Eastern Kurdistan. For this reason, in the theoretical section, the importance of the national question for the prominent Marxist theoreticians and also the various revisions related to nationalism are briefly examined. However, we want to know that: How has the giving priority to national question in Marxism been? From a political and pragmatic view, how has the process of the move from Marxist romanticism and idealism to comprehension of the political realitiesand tending towards national communism been? And eventually what has the effect of this romanticism been on Kurdistan and the Kurdish freedom movement? In the following sections the answer of these questions are pursued. 1. Marxism and Nationalism; the Reality of Regarding the National Question In the explanation of the “national question”, Roza Ismagilova, a researcher from former Soviet Republic, says that: “The abolition of all forms of the national oppression and ethnic inequality, freedom ofthe oppressed nations from imperialism’s yoke, making the real and friendly equality and fraternity cooperation among all people, liberty and comprehensive development etc.” Ismagilova believes that the scientific explanation of the national question at first performed by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. In this regard, the Communist Party Manifesto mentions that: “The exploitation of a person by others and exploitation of a nation by the other nations have to be finished. As the conflict between a nation’s classes and the enmity between a nation and other nations have to be removed and finished” (Maghsoodi, 2001, 157). It has normally been tried to formulate and sum the main concepts about national question in Marxist view on a direction as following: • Nations are the products of the historical development of society during a period of capitalism. • In any nation, there are drastic conflicts between bourgeoisie and proletariat classes, exploiter and exploited. The unity of class interests with bourgeoisie is not anything but lie and hypocrisy. Inequality and national enmity between nations and national oppression are the result of the social conflict of capitalism and the domination of bourgeoisie. Nationalism and chauvinism are the politics and ideology of the national question. • The proletariat because of its class nature is international. It has an inevitable conflict and enmity with bourgeois nationalism and all forms of oppression and national-racial inequality and also with national nihilism as a disguised subject of the same nationalistic ideology of bourgeoisie. The proletarian internationalism is the politics and ideology of proletariat for national question. • The proletariat has to fight with all kinds of the national oppression unconditionally. • With abolition of capitalism, the national conflicts such as other social conflicts will be removed (ibid, 158). But apart from the above total view, the reality of considering the national question and also nationalism in Left movement by Marxist theoreticians and leaders especially related to the oppressed Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 22 nations is different. The various views in different places and times have been seen. So, here, a short overview on Marxism from the nationalist viewpoint and considering the national question is necessary. Since Marxism and its various branches are very vast, for showing a clear view on the Marxism’s changes in theory and practice, especially the revisions related to the tendency towards nationalism and considering the national question, I just review the theory of Marx and very prominent theoreticians and pragmatic Marxist leaders namely Lenin and Mao who have been as patterns to the third world countries’ freedom movements and oppressed nations especially the radical Left in Kurdistan as Marxist-Leninist or Maoist groups. a) Marx, Marxism and Revisionism The main axis of the Marx’s thought, father of the 20th century communism, was the criticism of capitalism that its inequality and regular instability shows its transitional identity. Marx accepted a teleology theory of history that believed the social changes would lead to communism (Heywood, 2000, 225-6). Marx demarcates two parts for any society that their nature is different: Infrastructure, economic section, and superstructure, the other non-economicaspects of society like politics, law, religion and so on. The infrastructure has a causal priority and determines the superstructure. Although his idealistic theory can be summarized in the socialist life and the priority and importance of economy so that the economic power is not equal with political power, indeed his thought was under the effect ofhis situation and the condition of his society in that time. And especially because of being out of the political power, he totally gave priority to this issue and finally from this viewpoint saw both history and future. From a holistic view, while the Marx’s intellectual concern was international and for him the matter was not national question, naturally for the people of different societies and the nations with different situations and necessities, the causal priority is different. Despite this, considering the political equality, consequently solving the national question and changing the priorities in exceptional condition for providing a ground to construct a socialist society, can be derived from some of the Marx’s ideas also, especially related to democracy. Or such a reading on the Marx’s practical thought is possible. So, as will be mentioned, afterwards the different revisions and interpretations according to the various situations of nations emerged. And partially the priorities and determinant factors have changed based on the different societies’ necessities. However, apart from the above total theory, considering some other issues related to superstructure is seen in the Marx’s theories. For example, for him, Engels and afterward Lenin, the principle of national state or ‘one nation, one state’ in the nationalism theory under the form of the right to national selfdetermination was favorable (Alam, 2001, 159). For Marx, the transition to a favorable situation was not possible but by democracy; provided that democracy to be a situation in itself and for itself. In such a democracy, people as a textare attendance in the contextof state. In Marx’s opinion, democracy as a political order is the only real universal unity to achieve favorable situation (Shariat, 2005, 256). And, the real democracy includes all individuals, groups and nations, and cannot be declined to any of them or one group or nation. So, the liberation movements of the oppressed nations are in the line of democracy and are not against the Marx’s opinion. For Marx, the communist society was a balanced situation. Such a society is constituted based on the justice and liberty of the communes. His purpose of justice clearly was the observing the equal rights on equal terms. In the other words, his communist society proposes issuing a same statement for same proposition. So, the different statements for different terms should be issued (ibid, 276-7). Accordingly, for any analysis, simultaneously the local and global perspective should be regarded (Broomand, 2005, 131). On the other hand, in the Marx’s civil society, anybody as well as his talent participates in the groups, political and social associations. So, politics rises from within the political society and thus the relationship between politics and ethics is more durable and safer (Shariat, 2005, 277). Accordingly, and by slightly generalizing it, it can be said that as long as a nationis oppressed, none of its memberscan have a real participation. Thus, it was in the line of such different requirements that afterwards many revisions emerged in Marxism. Revisionism and changing priority based on the various conditions has been a common tradition in Marxism. Wherever there is a revision in a part of the Marxism’s theory or practice, whenever a change is happened in the platform of a communist party or in its philosophical and sociological comprehension or in its tactic and organization, and even in its propaganda and excitement manner to accommodate Marxism tothe new conditions, revisionism can be seen. The root of revisionism trace back to Marx and Engels, themselves. Kautesky confesses that ‘Marx and Engels were constantly busy with revision in their theories’ (Khameiy, 2002, 19). Sabah Mofidi 23 Hence, Marxism is further a series of thoughts that after the Marx’s death in 1883 emerged. It was the result ofthe efforts of Engels, Karl kautsky, and Georgi Plekhanov, for collecting the Marx’s ideas and theories in a systematic and comprehensive worldview to be proportionate to the requirements of the socialist movement (Heywood, 2000, 222). Thus, during the 20th century various kinds of Marxism emerged that even they often went beyond the Marx’s intention, himself. Naturally, Marxism is very vast than the Marx’s thought since the conflicting and various kinds of Marxism cannot be enumerated as a sum up of the Marx’s thoughts. Indeed, the paramount Marxist schools of the 20th century are the result of some aspects of the Marx’s thoughts and some aspects of the other thinker’s thoughts like Darwin, Espinosa, Hegel, Kant, and Freud. For example, Marxism-Leninism as a special reading of the Marx’s thought that cannot be known regardless to the determinant effects of power on it, has in a sense been the synthesis of the Marx and Blanki’s thoughts (Bashirieh, 2004, 21). b) Lenin and Leninism: Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov, alias Lenin, was most influential theorist and radical interpreter of Marxism in the 20th century that worked on the organizational issues and revolution (Heywood, 2000, 237). He had an extensive practical and intellectual effect on the 20th century Marxist thought and proletarian and communist movement. He was able to accommodate the political institutes and realities to his interpretation of Marxism, and also, on the other hand, Marxism with the realities and crises of the 20th century. The principal heritage of his thought and practice was the state socialism and an authoritarian party that were constituted in Russia and some backward peasant societies like China, Cuba and Yugoslavia that according to orthodox Marxism they didn’t have any accordance withthe realization of socialism. Despite these, his thoughts were often in accordance with the crisis conditions and revolutionary change as strategy than the stable conditions as a way of governing. However, the Bolsheviks proposed an entirely different program. They, like other social-democrats, believed to reach the political power as the first duty of the proletarian class. When the political power was fixed, struggle to obtain the economic power will be initiated (Gra, 1998, 8 & 14). Unlike the orthodox Marxists, Lenin practically didn’t give much significance to the theory of the priority of economy over politics and the theory of infrastructure and superstructure; especially it is true about his last works. So, his thought was a revision on the Marx’s practical thought. In his opinion, socialism cannot be reached as the spontaneous result of the class action. The political and class awareness is not the spontaneous product of the rules of the economic and historical evolution. This awareness can be only created through injection of a revolutionary theory by a revolutionary organization into the masses. Nothing happened spontaneously, and without organizing and the revolutionary will, history cannot be moved (Bashirieh, 2004, 94). But, apart from these revisions, the position of the national question in his view was different, as once he had said: “without implementing democracy entirely, the victory of socialism is not possible”(Reza, 1974, 49). Thus, in his writings under “Critical Remarks on the National Question” and “the Right of Nations to Self-Determination”, he outlined the aims and theoretic programs of the party on the national question. He considered achieving the equal position, national culture and class satisfaction through raising the doctrine of the development of nations’ rights and national relations and the ways of maintaining them by the equality of nations, the rights of national minorities, the right of nations for selfdetermination including separatism and autonomy based on language. The Lenin’s views about national question and establishing the socialist federalism to regard the national minorities’ right were reflected in the programs of the Soviet Communist Party and the new established state of this country. However, more than this case, the Soviet federalism was based on the ideological axis and afterwards led to totalitarianism and domination of the Russian nation. So, Lenin considered and advocated the nationalism of the dominated nations or countries. His criticism on most Marxists and social democrats about national question has been summarized in two points: first, they don’t have a true comprehension on the nature of the oppressed nations’ bourgeois nationalism and view the national movements merely in the line of the bourgeoisie’s interests that it helps to weaken the proletariat’s front. In this relation, Lenin differentiated between the nationalism of the dominated and dominant countries. He advocated the nationalism of the dominated nations, while condemned and hated the colonialist nationalism. Second, they have a limited vision on the “nations’ right to self-determination” as a main key to solve the national question. The most important aspect of the selfdetermination right isthe freedom to secede and creating the national state that these people cannot accept it, since it increases the danger of the country’s disintegration. In this regard, Lenin (1916a) writes: “The right of nations to self-determination means only the right to independence in a political sense, the Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 24 right to free, political secession from the oppressing nation.” Lenin through making a mutual link between internationalism and self-determination right, emphasized on these points that the freedom to secede is the only way to create afreely and voluntarily cooperation and unity, and in long term the integration of nations. And, the removing of the oppressed nation’s hostility and suspicion, and as result the unity of proletarians of the two nations as co-fighters in international struggle against bourgeoisie, is possibleonly if the labor movement of the oppressor nation recognizes the rights of the oppressed nation to national selfdetermination. Moreover, in this struggle, the masses of the oppressed nations can be the allies of the proletariat (Maghsoodi, 2001, 158-161). Lenin rejected this Left’s view that any defense of homeland and nation is against internationalism. The giving importance to national question is at best revealed in Lenin’s words (1916b), himself, that says: We have affirmed that it would be a betrayal of socialism to refuse to implement the selfdetermination of nations under socialism. […] “We know,” runs our opponents’ reasoning, “that socialism will abolish every kind of national oppression since it abolishes the class interests that lead to it....” What has this argument about the economic prerequisites for the abolition of national oppression, which are very well known and undisputed, to do with a discussion of one of the forms of political oppression, namely, the forcible retention of one nation within the state frontiers of another? This is nothing hut an attempt to evade political questions! […] Our very first thesis said that the liberation of oppressed nations implies a dual transformation in the political sphere: (1) the full equality of nations [….]; (2) freedom of political separation. […] The old Economists, who made a caricature of Marxism, told the workers that “only the economic” was of importance to Marxists. […] By transforming capitalism into socialism the proletariat creates the possibility of abolishing national oppression; the possibility becomes reality “only”—“only”!—with the establishment of full democracy in all spheres, including the delineation of state frontiers in accordance with the “sympathies” of the population, including complete freedom to secede. […] To be an internationalist Social-Democrat one must not think only of one’s own nation, but place above it the interests of all nations, their common liberty and equality. Everyone accepts this in “theory” but displays an annexationist indifference in practice. There is the root of the evil. Apart from the Lenin’s opinion on considering the self-determination of oppressed nations, three stages related to his view on Russian nationalism has been considered: During the primary stage, he looked at Russia from the Marxist thoughts viewpoint and in result insisted on the necessity of realizing a bourgeois –democraticrevolution in the country, and the impossibility of achieving socialism. In the second stage,he had entire fluctuation and talked ambiguously on the combination of bourgeois and socialist revolution. The third stage of his political life was especially related to catching power in 1917 within which he viewed Marxism from the viewpoint of the situation and special interests of Russia, and further revised Marxism (Bashirieh, 2004, 87-8). The Lenin’s stances and viewpoints on the national question and ethnic and national struggles have often been summarized as the following points: First, the ethnic and national struggles are in the second degree of importance rather than class struggle, but it doesn’t mean ignoring the national question and the oppressed nations’ struggle for their rights. Second, the self-determination right is not against Marxism though cannot be confined to federalism and autonomy. Third, the struggles of oppressed ethnics and nations in capitalist countries have democratic content. Forth, Marxists respect the nationalistic movement until it fights alongside the working class against capitalist systems. Otherwise, the movement is same with the bourgeois and petit bourgeois nationalism and it is eventually a step to back (Maghsoodi, 2001, 162). But in comparison with the Lenin’s above-mentioned thought, Leninism or Marxism-Leninism which emerged after the Lenin’s death as a political ideology, included some additions, missing, selections and various manipulations. In the other words, Leninism was a set of the Lenin’s selected manuscripts that based on the time requirements, political situation and his successor’s desires, with continuous revisions, as Lenin’s thought was presented. The rate of the loyalty of Leninism not only to the Marx’s thought, but also to the Lenin, himself, was afterwards one of the controversial matters among Marxists. The regulation of Russian Marxism-Leninism was the main work of Stalin who his famous theory was ‘socialism in a country’ (Bashirieh, 2004, 101-2 & 119). In this interpretation of Leninism announced in 1924, he stated that Soviet Union without needing to the global revolution can constitute socialism in soviet (Heywood, 2000, 238). It was the dominant interpretation during Stalin’s period for justification of the policy of rapid industrialization and the collectivization of agriculture. He defined Leninism as ‘the Marxism of the Sabah Mofidi 25 imperialism age’. Finally, Stalin in a speech in February, 1931, formally advocated the theory of socialism in a country, Russian patriotism and economic self-sufficiency. So, he further regarded the nationalist aspect so that Leninism at first was Russian Marxism. This nationalism-based term regarded Marxism from the viewpoint of Russia’s experience and thus created a basic conceptual transfer in Marxism. And even some Lenin’s comments about the weak ring of capitalism, imperialism and so on that were periodic and necessary to justify the political changes, were being extended under the name of communism (Bashirieh, 2004, 85-90 & 120). While the usage of the word ‘communism’ trace back to 1830s in France and after that the Marx’s theory, normally the formula of ‘Marxism-Leninism’ had been accepted as the equivalent of ‘communism’ (Gra, 1998, 1). Totally, comparing the Marx’s thought with Marxism-Leninism, it has been said that the Marx’s concern was that how the industrializing process affects the infrastructure of the capitalist system and by changing it, the ideological and political superstructures will be changed and it leads to socialism, while the main usage of Marxism as ideology in Leninism was how a backward country can be led to industrialization way. Thus, as Bashirieh (2004) mentions, ‘it was a basic misunderstanding of Marxism, in the other words, a reverse, temporal and periodic interpretation of Marxism in the special historical conditions. Marxism in Leninism became the ideology of development and modernization, so it was desirable for nations that are more backward. While the issues considered by Marxism had to engage the mind of more advanced societies’ (p. 100). Hence, with this large change in the basic subject of Marxism, indeed Leninism practically tended towards giving priority to politics or power and consequently the nationalistic tendencies of the dominant nation, even against the Lenin’s comments to advocate the interests of other nations especially the oppressed ones. It practically by passed the internationalist slogans to give significance to the countries and nationalistic aspects like socialism and economic development in a country and so on. And indeed it is not anything but stepping into the way of real politics and comprehension of the political realities that it derives from being within the political power structure and seeing the issues from this viewpoint. These changes were also continued in the other Marxist brunches so that the nationalistic tendencies practically and openly got priority in Maoism. c) Mao and Maoism Mao Tse Tung (Dun) presented a third world interpretation on Marxism based on the Lenin’s ideas that its major contents were nationalism, cross-class international conflicts and anti-imperialism. He strongly tried to make a Chinese Marxism. In his opinion, Chinese governments after 1911 revolution, and the social classes who supported them, were dependent on imperialism. Thus, instead of emphasis on the class struggle within the country, he emphasized on the conflict between dominated nations and dominant countries. So, Mao’s Marxism from the beginning was non-class and nationalistic. In the 7th congress of his party in 1945, he called for an independent, free, democratic, unified, rich and powerful China. He argued that the pattern of Russian revolution is useless in China (ibid, 373-5). About the necessity of accommodating Marxism with the special conditions of china, he says: ‘Marxism far-off from the conditions of China is an abstract and hollow Marxism. The usage of Marxism in accordance with the special situation of China is the most important issue for the party’ (Gra, 1998, 172). Mao also emphasized on the priority of superstructure elements in the special conditions even in the scope of economic development. In his opinion, revolution in the scope of values and beliefs can help the economic development. The change in the scope of superstructure not only can advance in parallel to the change in the scope of infrastructure, but also can surpass and affect it. Thus, Mao consistently emphasized that “politics is in the position of commandership” (Bashirieh, 2004, 376). When the political and cultural superstructure and so on prevents the growth of economic foundation, the cultural and political change is essential and categorical necessity. According to his interpretation that is in conflict with the classic historical materialism, the relationship between the economic foundation and superstructure and also between the productive forces and the relations of production is bilateral. Each of these elements in turn plays the determinant and categorical role. But when these relationships prevent from the growth of productive forces, the change of these relations of production become the determinant and categorical element. Without this change, the productive forces will be arrested, destroyed and ineffective. Obviously, this change cannot emerge as the effect of productive forces; so it would derive from the non-economic factors like ideological, military, political factors. Briefly, the nature of determinant element varies according to the social conditions. In a peaceful change, the economic structure and productive forces are the determinant elements. During revolution, on the contrary, the non-economic factors are dominant and open the way for the free growth of productive forces by changing the producing relationships (Khameiy, 2002, 173). Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 26 In this relation, the peasant revolution and war as the important form of revolution were the two major principles of the Mao’s political thought. He, especially after 1927, tried to accommodate Marxism as the ideology of revolution tothe special historical conditions of China. Thus, unlike Lenin that saw the peasants as only one of the support forces of proletarian revolution and insisted on the unity of peasants and workers, and against Narodniks that spoke on the socialistic desires of peasants, Mao argued that in the special conditions of china, the peasant class would lead the revolution. He even believed that the communist party as the leader of revolution can emerge from within the peasant class. So, Maoism totally took a peasant and non-proletarian character (Bashirieh, 2004, 374). For him, not everything had been commenced from 1917, and the peasant class, who obviously were a supporter class for Soviets, was at the same level with the working class (Gra, 1998, 172). However, his doctrine recommended the mass armed struggle and surrounding the cities from the countryside. Along with these comments on the priority of superstructure and the role of peasants, in Mao’s view the position of internal classes had to be evaluated related to supporting or opposing imperialism. The anti-imperialist parts of bourgeoisie were enumerated as a part of the revolutionary forces. So, the revolution in china was basically national, not class revolution. This view was based on the third international theory that saw the revolution in dominated countries as anti-imperialist basically, and enumerated all social classes as a part of the revolutionary forces. Based on the Mao’s theory, the social revolution is possible only by the national salvation from international exploitation. In this line, he saw all classes as potential cooperators of the working class. From this viewpoint, the main enemy is imperialism not feudalism or capitalism. And the revolutionary forces are formed of the nationalistic unity of all classes. So, Maoism has totally a nationalistic character within which the social classes are replaced by the ‘masses’ (Bashirieh, 2004, 374 & 377). Thus, Maoism as a moderate idea between Marxism and Leninism became one of the large philosophical creeds of the unity of beliefs. d) Marxism as a Political Tool In the other countries like above-mentioned ones also, however, contrary to the orthodox Marxism the move towards nationalism and acceptance of some new aspects according to the different situation and in sensitive period, has been seen. For example, in Latin America, the national question has an anticapitalism meaning (Broomand, 2005, 210) so that in Cuba, the Castroist movement, in Gra’s words (1998), “was originally very nationalistic, liberal and, in a word, bourgeois” (p. 143). Thus, the main revisions emerged, even on the level of the main Marxist principle, infrastructure and superstructure. The prominent Marxist theoreticians gave importance and priority to politics, law and so on as the super structural issues, and they accommodated the Marxism theory with various societies and the aims of different movements. The national question and nationalism were considered and eventually Marxism was used to serve the nationalism of dominant nation in the countries that didn’t have the real national question as the oppressed nations like Kurds. From a political view, it can be mentioned that every movement based on its aims has used Marxism as a tool, and regardless to the infra and super structural issues, has performed what is better to the movement or country. So, the priorities have been different for various movements. Marxism as an instrument was used to reach the salvation of a country or nation from the yoke of imperialism, the equality of classes in a country, economic development in a country, promotion of a nation, catching political power, salvation from national oppression and so on. And often Marxism has gone far away from the international slogans, and the claimant countries have never sacrificed the interests of their nation orcountry for the idealistic and romanticist aims of Marxism. It has been an instrument to fight for both thepolitical equality of nations and reinforcing the nationalism of dominant nation. But what is obvious is that in most countries the second one has been dominant, so that in communist societies, themselves, the relationship between nations has not been based on the equality of rights. As result, there have been the large national movements in most of the communist world. The power of decentralization is an example that happened, on the one hand, between the peripheral countries and communist centre and, on the other hand, inside of some communist countries, between its various internal nations and centre or dominant nation. And the chauvinism of dominant nation has had the full support of government, army and secret police (Reza, 1974, 121-5). In the beginning, this sentence of prominent communist pioneers that ‘toilers have no homeland’ led to weaken and disvalue the nationalistic emotions quickly. It concealed the reality of stability, force and power of nationalistic emotion, for a long-time. But whenever it was necessary, this emotionwas used by the workshop of the governmental communism theory, as Stalin in the time of big dangers appealed to the Russian patriotism. However, in the practical and theoretical Marxism of socialist countries, the pragmatist Marxist leaders changed the lookingat nationalism based on the different requirements. Contrary to a few Sabah Mofidi 27 movements that are still in the Marxist romanticism, in most various comments the priorities were changed so that they gave more significance to the national communism and nationalism and practically went far away from internationalist slogan. Thus, the transition from romanticism to realism emerged as a phenomenon that some groups precisely concealed it and others strongly revealed it as “the change of thermidorian nature” referring to the thermidor of 1794 (Gra, 1998, 2019-20). But, contrary to the dominant nations, that finally the hegemony of the Marxist ideology has also been in their interest, the question for oppressed nations like Kurds is entirely different, since the problem of stateless nations is still the lack of political power. So any ideological hegemony but the nationalism leads to weakening and destroying the nationalistic emotions and eventually more bad conditions for the dominated nations and maintaining the political inequality. In this relation, based on what was mentioned on the national question and tendency to nationalism in the Left movement, in the next parts this movement and its functions related to nationalism and the national question in Iran and Kurdistan are examined to specify the effects of Left thought on the national question in Kurdistan. And, from a political view,to know that has the Left movement of Kurdistan had a true and realistic understanding on Marxism and its revisions infavor of the Kurdish national movement, or not? 2. The Approach of the Iranian Left Movement to Kurdistan The policy of the dominant nations’ Left political parties is different from the oppressed nation’s ones. While the former, normally after catching power openly change their policies in favor of dominant nation or ethnicity, for the latter, from the beginning, the national question is important. For example, the communist party of China in the late of 1960s, in the line of national politics, started diplomatic relation with non-communist world. As Irej Kashkooli, one of the leaders and activists of Iranian Left movement says: “It was a policy adopted by all parties on power in the socialist countries. Their national interests were above the proletarian internationalism. The proletarian internationalism was only talk” (shawkat, 2001a). In Iran also, although the Left has never taken the power, the policy of Left parties was such that until they have been in danger and threatened by the government, they have talked on the rights of all Iranian nations, but otherwise, they have opposed the self-determination of them, the approved principle in Marxism-Leninism, and indeed have advocated the Iranian or Persian nationalism, the nationalism of dominant nation. Some Left organizations like Tudeh Partyof Iran (TPI) and the Iranian People's Fadaee Guerrillas Organization (IPFGO) partially recognized the rights of the Iran’s nationalities. But, in practice they were different and didn’t pursue these rights and demands when they were within the political power structure. For example, the TPI during its history has sometimes mentioned Iran as a multi-national country, and talked on the national oppression, national minorities in Iran and resolving the national question on the basis of securing the rights of Iranian peoples for their self-determination. But its action was against its previous claims during suppressing the Azerbaijan and Kurdistan Republics, 1945, which it had three ministers in the Cabinet of the central government, or after revolution, 1979, until 1982, the time of its purging, that it had partially influence in political power. In this regard, its attempts to make a cleavage in the KDPI can be mentioned. About this, Sheikh Ezzadin Hosseini, the spiritual ex-leader of Kurdistan, says: Unfortunately that part of Democratic Party, which they [also] had the title of Democratic Party and basically were affiliated to the Tudeh, forced Sabbaghiyan2 to leave the negotiation desk because of the presence of [Fadaee] Guerrillas and Komala. On the one hand, the Tudehcrats3 now say that a person, who mentioned the name of Guerrillas and Komala, didn’t allow the government to give our rights and disturbed it. While Kianouri4 , himself, in his memorials writes that ‘we had put that plan (autonomy plan)’… But Kianouri says Qasemlu 5 and his party had been recommended to not accepting this plan and disturbing it. He blames Qasemlu, and Tudehcrats 2 Hashem Sabbaghiyan, one of the leaders of the Freedom Movement of Iran, a religious-national organization, and one of the special mission’s members sent by the central government and revolutionary council to negotiation meeting in Kurdistan. 3 He named the small group of KDPI affiliated to the Tudeh party as Tudehcrat that later separated from KDPI. 4 Dr. Noureddin Kianouri was an influential member of the Central Committee for the communist Tudeh Party. He acted as the party's General Secretary from 1979 to 1984. 5 Dr. Abdulrahman Qasemlu, the ex-leader of KDPI. Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 28 blame me, that neither side is right. The government didn’t want to negotiate. Anywhere it had been failed by Peshmarga forces and the people’s demonstrations, so it wanted to have a breather and rehabilitate itself (Karimi, 2005, 348). The IPFGO also after 1979 revolution, in its minimalistic program had demanded the performance of the following content that in their words was in accordance with the8 articles plan of Kurdish nation: “Securing and recognizing ethnic, cultural, political and economic liberties of Iranian peoples. They have to be free to select their own private life of way. In this regard, any discrimination has to be removed. In a democratic and free Iran, the people have to be free to live with their own religion, language, national culture and political and economic way of life” (Bloody War, 1979). Besides, this organization formed an assembly under the “council of Iranian peoples” that through a resolution advocated federal system (Mofidi, 2006). But despite these, for IPFGO that had formed a brunch in Kurdistan, ‘the resolving of Kurdish question was not important, they just wanted to use Kurdistan as a centre for their activities and the Kurdish question to pressurize the government’ (Mustafa Amin, 1998, 133). While, it could protect the Kurdish parties instead of forming the brunch in Kurdistan and making another cleavage within the Kurdish forces. In this relation, the killing of Hamed Bag from Jiwanro (Javanrood) by them because of his betrayal of Iran and cooperation with Baath regime of Iraq, in their words, should be mentioned. This action performed regardless to the opposition of some groups especially Komala. Abdullah Mohtadi, one of the Komala’s leaders, about the death of Hamed Bag and the relationship of IPFGO with the centre, says: “We opposed with arresting Hamed Bag and by both letter and talking recommended the Guerrillas and asked to release him. But they not only didn’t do it, but also used our demand as an instrument for disclosure and issuing announcement against Komala. It is noteworthy that the Guerrillas gradually went towards the policy of protecting Islamic Republic of Iran and on the level of the internal politics of Kurdistan also they had opposed us…” (Karimi, 2005). However, the stand of Iranian Left movement about the Kurdish question totally in practice was not different from the policy of the governments before and after 1979 revolution, and eventually it moved in the line of dominant nation’s nationalism. They justified the existence of national movements in various regions of Iran based on some orthodox Marxist theories and the lack of equal economic development, and didn’t regard the self-determination right of various nations in Iran and basically didn’t believe the national question of these peoples. So, it was their detour from Marxism-Leninism in favor of their given abstract Iranian nationalism. The conduct of the Revolutionary Organization of Tudeh Party (ROTP) which its members were familiar with Kurdistan more than other Iranian groups approves the above-mentioned claim better. About the year 1968 and during the Kurdistan’s armed revolt, ROTP through communication with the Revolutionary Committee of Kurdistan Democratic Party wanted to fulfill its strategy in Kurdistan. In that time, according to their analysis on Kurdistan, this society was a half-feudal half-colonial, and launching a peasant guerilla war became the strategy of the group that the operation had to be commenced in the form of mass base and led to the mass war (Jazani, 1978, 172). But with the end of this revolt, their program also was arrested. After the 1979 revolution, this organization within the Ranjbaran Party (Toilers' Party) of Iran didn’t take any stand about Kurdistan question and the government’s attack. Despite this, the organization once again selected Kurdistan as a region to start armed struggle emerging conflict between the party and the government (Shawkat, 2001a, 236). According to Kourosh Lashai, the organization’s ex-member who was very nationalist from the beginning, in his words, this group believed that the society of Iran is a halffeudal half-colonial society, and the only transition way to the ideal communist society is the popular and democratic revolution by irate revolution (Shawkat, 2002, 12 &139). So, indeed, the Iranian Left also pursued socialism for Iran and it had nationalistic tendency based on the Persian ethnicity, though eventually failed. Totally, the failure of Marxism in Iran was not because of the collapse of its ideological source. The cause is related to the Marxists’ inability in understanding, recognizing and compatibility with Iranian society and its internal dynamics. Various factors especially political, social and economic characteristics of Iran as a multi-national and multi cultural society affected the Marxist groups in Iran (Behrooz, 2001, 230). But, they didn’t regard these characteristics and they didn’t have a true belief in resolving the question of Iranian nations even by federal and autonomous systems as some socialist countries. To clarify the Iranian Left view on the Kurdish national question and above-mentioned claims, the confession of some eminent persons from ROTP is seemingly sufficient. First, Mehdi khanbaba Tehrani in evaluating the manner of Iranian Left organizations withthe Kurdish movement and their view on it from the viewpoint of group interestssays: Sabah Mofidi 29 Whereas the Iranian political organizations have mostly moved from a closed ideological system, their pivotal question also has always been achieving the hegemony in struggles. Every one presents itself as the class party, and consequently in front of a regional movement like Kurdish movement, just thinks on performing hegemony. But when they understand that this is not possible, their Marxism sentiment suddenly appears. So, they bring the theoretical pretext that the Kurdish movement is regionalist or the autonomy is basically a bourgeois principleand [Kurdistan] Democratic Party has a reformist politics, since this party in necessity time will negotiate [with the government] and for them negotiation also is a kind of political struggle. […] for these reasons, Kurdistan was a tool for them and I saw this situation after the revolution and their journey to Kurdistan… The large forces and proletarian battalions of Iran that their biggest group had not hundred persons, by using Kurdistan movement, all had attended there as boutique (Shawkat, 2001b, 434). Second, Irej kashkooli, another eminent member of ROTP, about ignoring the rights of Kurdish people duringthe government’s attack on Kurdistan, and their front changing within the Ranjbaran Party, says: We, ourselves, had written the copious articles about the rights of Kurdish people in the past. My big and personal quarrel with other leaders of the organization was on this question. Here, even, the problem went beyond the Marxism’s principles and national right to self-determination too. Contrary to the other Left groups, we had lived with Kurdish people for years. We had common struggle experience, and they had also other expectation of us. It led to this that when we were forced to refuge to Kurdistan, some Kurdish forces like Komala, didn’t allow us to go there and said: “You are on the other side of the line.” The view of the leadership of the organization and thereafter Ranjbaran Party was that the revolution is in danger, the Kurds have become separatists. And they indicated some negative points of them that were not incorrect also, and the issue was being cancelled After the revolution, the talks were that the state has been pressurized from all sides and any factor that leads to its weakening will be in favor of imperialists. This evaluation was their mainspring for supporting the Islamic Republic. This theory led to forgetting the other issues… because of this theory, even about Kurdistan that we were familiar with, we didn’t take a true stance (Shawkat, 2001a, 185- 91). According to the above-mentioned views of the Left movement of Iran about the Kurdish question, in the next parts the Left movement of Kurdistan is examined. 3. The Left Movement of Kurdistan at a Glance The study of the new national movement in Kurdistan without considering its relation with the Left movement is practically imperfect. The Left thought and movement have affected indeed most of the new parties and organizations, though they have looked at Left movement from the national conflict view.And the struggle of Kurdish nation as an oppressed nation basically needs parties with the policy of ‘giving significance to the national question’. The Left movement provided a new and good ground for the freedom movement of Kurdish nation. It helped the Kurds to fight for the equality of nations and their own revival. The Kurds used the Left’s capacities, radical and revolutionary way to fight against the assimilation policy and other policies of dominant nations that it is sometimes necessary to the oppressed nations who are fighting. But, the inability and weakness of some groups and various organizations in accommodating the Left theories with the Kurdistan’s situation has been an important problem and simultaneously hurtful for the Kurdish movement, so that sometime they couldn’t to keep their distance from the Left parties of dominant nations in relevant countries and because of theoretic weakness and eventually being affected by the Leftist groups and individuals of the dominant nations who didn’t have the national question, they didn’t consider their national question from a realistic viewpoint. While in Kurdistan, the class, anticolonial and anti-despotic struggle of people has always passed from the national channel, and the national element has had anaxial role. Indeed, supporting and talking on the national question has been the reason for the survival and influence of the Left forces or even their being on the top of the struggles. In this regard, the Kurdistan Workers Party in Turkey (PKK) in North, KDPI in East and Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) in south of Kurdistan are of the organizations that despite having Left ideology, have not mostly sacrificed the national question to the Marxist romanticism, and on the contrary, they partially accepted an acceptable interpretation of the Left theories within which the priority is for resolving the national question. PKK as a radical Left organization in Northern Kurdistan more than other groups was successful in accommodation of the Left theories, so that it could to apply partly the principles of armed struggle, converting the movement to a mass movement in cities, the unity of various classes, the peasant Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 30 role and so on, for resolving the Kurdish question and in the line of freedom struggle of this nation. As it separated its way from Turkish socialism and even affected them. The struggle of KDPI as a moderate Left party also has basically been for resolving the Kurdish question as its raison d’être. Its founders in 1945 were not communist and it was not a brunch of TPI in that time (Jazani, 1978, 28). It has always had a nationalistic policy and when according to the political requirements joined the Left movement, wanted democratic socialism for the future of Kurdistan. It has never claimed to be a Marxist-Leninist organization, but it has been a member of the Socialist International (SI). Its realism led to prevent the influence and hegemony of the theories that were the preserver of the interests of the ruling nation’s nationalism. As in 1968, Qasemlu had expressed his worry on the influence of the Iranian radical Left groups like ROTP in Kurdistan and the deviation of Kurdish Youth (Shawkat, 2001a). Besides, PUK as the largest Leftist partyin Southern Kurdistan has not mostly passed from nationalism border. Along with the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iraq, it realistically and with political spin of its leadership according to the international conditions has advanced to resolve the Kurdish question in Iraq. Another main radical Left organization in Kurdistan is ‘Kurdistan Toilers Revolutionary Organization of Iran’ known as Komala6 (KTROI) in Eastern Kurdistan that can be mentioned as only main Left organization that has been different from other main Kurdish parties, and in comparison with abovementioned parties, its stance on the national question during various stages, has been different and sometimes negative. It has typically swept between romanticism and understanding the social-political realities. Because of its distinct characteristics, hereafter this organization and the Kurdish national question from its view are in particular examined. 4. The Komala Organization and its View on the National Question in Kurdistan Komala-KTROI was formed during a process that its root trace back to the secret activities of a group of students in Tehran and Tabriz, and some Kurdish Marxist intelligentsia since 1969. In 1971, by a pamphlet under ‘why we are scattered and how to be united?’ they announced their stands thathad seen the Iranian society as half colonial-half feudal and also the Soviet as a social-Imperialist state. In the fall of 1978 and after the release of its leader, Kak Foad, from prison after 4 years, it launched its first important meeting, known as the first congress, and extended its activities so that on 15 February 1979 revealed itself. And eventually the process of its formation was almost completed and as a coherent organization under the name of Komala emerged in the same year. Foad Mustafa-Sultani, Mohammad Hossein Karimi, Abdullah Mohtadi, Fateh sheikh Al-Islami, Yadullah Biglari and Saed Watandust, Tayeb Rohollahi Abbasi, Ibrahim Alizadeh, Irej Farzad, Hossein Moradbeygi, Omar Ilkhanizadeh, Mohsen Rahimi were some of its primary founders. Foad Mustafa-Sultani, Known as Kak Foad7 , was a charismatic, eminent and famous leader of Komala. He was from the revolutionary and popular leaders of the communist movement of Iran and Kurdistan who 11 months after his release from prison during the three months war, imposed by the Iranian government on Kurdistan, was killed on 31 August 1980. During this short period, he played an important role in constituting a broad mass organization and the political power of Komala (Mustafa-Sultani, 2006, 52, 61, 187 & 208; Mohammadzadeh, 2007a; Kaykhosrawi, 2007; Karimi, 2005, 336-7; Mustafa-Sultani and Watandust, 2015). In Kak Foad’s words, this organization wanted to establish a national democratic republic under the leadership of working class. In the above-mentioned meeting, they introduced themselves in the continuation of other Kurdish movements and emphasized on the real Kurdistanization of the organization (Mustafa-Sultani and Watandust, 2015, 428). Nevertheless, their analysis about Kurdistan’s situation was from Marxist view and was often limited to the economic condition and peasant and working class, while they were aware on the lack of industrial proletariat in Kurdistan, so that they didn’t discuss about the political, cultural, linguistic and national issues in about 50 pages general discussion on Kurdistan (ibid, 363-412). As the secret activities of the founders before their open activity from 1969-1979, their attempts to link with the Kurdish movement in Southern Kurdistan and other Marxist-Leninist groups of Kurdistan, can be mentioned. At first, Saeid (khana) Moeini made this relation. Besides, after 1975 Saed Watandust and Jafar Shafiei (Dr. Aziz) went to the camp of PUK in Southern Kurdistan to build a relationship and familiar with the ‘Komalay Ranjdaran’ (sufferers’ community), a Marxist-Leninist group 6 In Kurdish: ‘Komalay Shorshgeri Zahmatkeshani Kurdistan’ that ‘Komala’ means populace and community. 7 About his life, see: Rashad Mustafa-Sultani, Kak Foad; A leader, Politician and Political Thinker, Kurdistan, Rojhelat, 2006. Sabah Mofidi 31 (Mohammadzadeh, 2007a). And in the so-called first congress also they agreed on the cooperation and close relationship with PUK (Mustafa-Sultani and Watandust, 2015, 428). However, the activity of the years before the 1979 revolution in Komala rhetoric are mentioned as secret activity during the King’s (Shah) regime (A Resolution on…, 2000).8 During the 1979 revolution, the primary constituent groups of Komala that still didn’t have a specified name, because of the title of their announcement which started with ‘combatant compatriots’ had famed with this name among the people (The Bloody war…, 1979). After the revolution, these groups and the KTROI’s cadres based on the above-mentioned congress’s resolution formed ‘umbrella organization’ under the different names to disguise its cadres. Instead of forming a whole organization under its name in all cities of Kurdistan, in each city with different name it formed an organization that was not directly and openly in relation with the organization in other cities. Some of these organizations were: The Community of Advocating Freedom and Revolution, in Sine (Sanandaj); the Community of Advocating the Kurdish Nation Rights, in Saqiz; the Community of Fighting for the Freedom and National Right of Kurdish Nation, in Bukan; the Community of Advocating the Freedom and Toilers’ Rights, in Naghada; the Community of the Salvation Way of Toilers in Iranian Kurdistan, in Mahabad; the Peasants Union, in Mariwan; the Equality Community (Komalay Yaksani) and so on (Mustafa Amin, 1998, 24). Afterwards, with expanding their activities and achieving a relative organization, they formed KTROI. About Komala, Nawshirwan Mustafa Amin sys that: “In the last stage of Iranian revolution and during the uprising that there were still the political and organizational vacuum, and the KDPI’s cadres were in Iraq and Europe yet, KTROI had a few cadres. It didn’t want to reveal itself and they had some peculiar opinions about the organizational, political and collective activity” (ibid, 16). In comparison with the Iranian Left groups, this organization had better and more well-known cadres in Kurdistan who had remained in Iran and had a small organizational core. So, it had a better ground to expand, though because of the kind of their thought and work’s method, couldn’t become the greatest force in Kurdistan. After the revolution, in the beginning the organization’s influence and as a result its contribution to the Kurdish people’s delegation was low.The delegation under the leadership of Sheikh Ezzadin Hosseini, included 4 members from KDPI, 2 members from KTROI and 2 members of IPFGO (ibid, 133). In Sine, which afterwards became their main centre, during forming ad hoc committee of Sinecity council elections, two delegates from Leftists, Saeid Sheikh Al-Islami and Yusuf Ardalan, were respectively selected by the ‘IPFGO’s Supporters Office’ and the ‘Community of Advocating Freedom and Revolution’(out of 5 delegates, two from Islamists and one neutral, Mozafar Partomah) (The Bloody War…, 1979, 179; Partomah, 2005). Despite these, in this short period they had many activities. In the Kurdish people’s delegation, they had an active role. With a distinguished program, they used various channels like the ad hoc revolutionary council in Sine, to reveal themselves. Also they were from the first armed revolutionary groups that from other Kurdistan’s cities on March 19, 1979 came to help the peopleof Sine (The Bloody War…, 1979, 93). With expanding its activities, very soon Komala in overall the south of Iranian Kurdistan (Sine, Mariwan, Kamyaran and so on) emerged as a dominant force. The KTROI with its organizations in various cities and through merging them during the government’s attack on Kurdistan gradually disclosed itself, and came out from its communities format and almost after the three months war in Kurdistan they coherently united and since that time announced itself as KTROI or shortly ‘Komala’ (Khaykhosrawi, 2007; Karimi, 2005, 336-7). Since the war’s beginning, the armed forces of Komala along with the KDPI’s forces resisted in front of the government’s attack on Kurdistan. Komalaattracted a numerous of intelligentsia and Kurdish youth (Kaykhosrawi, 2007). During this period, Komala’s official organ was the ‘Pishro’ issue. It should be noted that Komala afterwards determined its announced day, the date of one of its founders’ killing, Mohammad Hossein Karimi, on February 15, 1979 as its day; ‘Komala Day’. Komala has ideologically been known as a Marxist-Leninist organization with Maoist idea (see: Mustafa-Sultani and Watandust, 2015), however it cannot be clearly said that which idea they have followed because during its existence, it has had conflicts and contradictions with the theories of Lenin and Mao. From the beginning, a combination of both ideas is seen among them. As Entessar mentions: ‘A group of the Kurdish students in Tehran and Tabriz that had taken inspiration from the aims of promoting the class consciousness and Marxist revolutionary thought among all Iranian workers, formed Komala in 1969 as a proletarian driver of Iran or for the working class of Iran and Kurdistan’ (Entessar, 2007, 96). 8 For more information about the secret activities period, see: Malakeh Mustafa-Sultani and Saed Watandust, The Discussions of the Komala’s First Congress, Rebazi Komala, 2015. Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 32 And in the recent writings of Komala also, the attempts to form a working class party and communist party during the secret activity in the king regime has been mentioned (A Resolution on…, 2000). Besides, their practice mostly was close to the Maoist idea so that they considered the peasants and rural people, and village was basically the place of their activity, though they had activity in cities also (Mustafa-Sultani and Watandust, 2015, 424). After the revolution of 1979, unlike the other Kurdish parties and groups that tried to consolidate and reinforce the Kurdish nationality through psychological relations with history and past struggles, Komala tried to attract the support of Kurdish people by particular attention to the political education through teaching the principles of the class and partisan war for rural boys and girls (Entessar, 2007, 97). Their ideas were patterned on the Mao’s and Chinese revolutionary way, and worked among villagers to organize them (The Bloody War…, 1979, 38). So, they didn’t have a specified Marxist idea. It was their theoretic weakness so that not only they couldn’t to have an interpretation on Marxism appropriate to the Kurdistan’s situation, but also afterwards it led to pushing them towards the non-Kurdish Marxist groups and eventually the hegemony of some classic and proletarian Marxism theories on this organization and the decline of consideringthe national question. As they went far from Kurdish Marxist-Leninist groups like ‘Komalay Ranjdaran’ of Southern Kurdistan that the national question was important for them, and they even reckoned PUK as a non-Marxist and populist organization (Mustafa Amin, 1998, 158). However like other Kurdish organizations, above all things, the effect of the national oppression in the birth of this organizationis obvious, butits ideological-political approach was different and more radical than other parties, andaccording to what was mentioned above, from the beginning two trends can be also distinguished within Komala: the Nationalist Marxistsand anti-Nationalist Marxists. Accordingly, the activity history of Komala from its formation until now shows some main changes so that it has sometimes had some desertions from its main aims, and has practically and theoretically had some wrongs. So, from the viewpoint of the national question, its formal history can be divided into three stages that are examined: first, from the victory of Iranian revolution, 1979, up to 1982 (its independent action period); second, from 1982-2000, working within the Communist Party ofIran (CPI); third, from 2000 upward that the CPI was divided and its offshoots reconstructed Komala and returned to the first principles and independent action. First Stage: 1979-1982 During this period, because of the nationalistic sentiments of Kurdish people and the special condition of Kurdistan, Komala’s stances generally and in practice was passing through the national conflict and giving priority to the national question. And almost the thought of nationalist (nationaloriented) Marxists had hegemony on Komala and it acted as a Kurdish organization, though having some mistakes. All founders of Komala were young and without enough political experience, and wanted to answer the question that what can they do? Simultaneously the national question was important for them. All the founders were Kurd. The revolution of Southern Kurdistan in Iraq at 1960-70s and the armed struggle of the KDPI’s Revolutionary Committee especially the martyrdom of Esmaeil Sharifzadeh and Sulaiman Moeini affected its founders’ stance (Mustafa-Sultani, 2006, 62-3 & 97). As in 1979, in the memorial of the martyrdom of Sharifzadeh and his friends, they gathered around his grave in Sine (ibid, 2006, 18). Along with the dominance of above view, there was a trend of anti-nationalist Marxist thought that was gradually growing and viewed Kurdish question from the viewpoint of Marxist revolution in Iran. This organization was one of the forces that intended to resolve Kurdish question through their learned special revolutionary pattern, so that the first clash with the military forces of Iran in Kurdistan was started by Komala forces in Sine (Shawkat, 2001b, 422-431). In this stage, the extension of Komala’s social position was because of its proper stance and tactic during the secret activity period based on cooperation and alliance with the non-Marxist groups and religious-national progressive and single persons, considering the Kurdish question and Kurdish oppressed class, not its special ideology (Mustafa-Sultani and Watandust, 2015, 423). In this relation, Irej Kashkooli says: “A part of the Komala’s power owed to the propagations of Sheikh Ezzadin for that organization” (Shawkat, 2001b, 366). And this support was because of being as a Kurdish organization. As afterwards, Sheikh Ezzadin Hosseini, himself, also criticized its joining to the CPI. Related to the hegemony of nationalism on Komala asa Kurdish organization, which led to his support, he says: As an intellectual cleric, I supported the freedom and cooperation of all national and political forces. With Abdulrahman Qasemlu as the leader of Democratic Party and Foad Mustafa-sultani as the leader of Komala, we had consensus on the common questions: The Defense of democracy, liberty and reaching the legitimate national right of Kurdish nation, and for thesequestions, we had coordination Sabah Mofidi 33 and tendency to cooperation… In that time Komala was a Kurdish organization and worked under the ‘Kurdistan Toilers Revolutionary Organization’ and Kurdish national question was the matter. When they wanted to form the communist partyof Iran, I warned them and I protested and mentioned their wrongs. Because we had the horrid experience of cooperation and fighting under the umbrella of other forces, and I don’t basically believe in communism […]. I knew Komala as aprogressive and revolutionary force in the line of Kurdish people’s struggle and I supported it as the other Kurdish parties. We are fighting for the rights of Kurdish nation in Kurdistan and we confirm any force and trend that is sharer and participant (Entessar, 2007, 474).9 In another interview, he also says: I thought the growth of Komala is better. It is a new organization; if it grows, it isbetter than the Democratic Party. I thought such this… Because I, Mam Jalal [Talabani] and intellectual persons of Kurdistan, who wanted the interest of Kurdistan, we thought Komala is young and we hoped to become a large and independent power to preserve the Kurdish nationalism! For this reason, we supported it so much (Karimi, 2005, 346). In the time of the negotiation between the Iranian government and the Kurds, Komala’s representatives were in the Kurdish delegation and the 8 articles plan was their demand too. About autonomy and resolving the Kurdish question, in the beginning Komala even was more radical than the KDPI and called them as ‘compromiser’, though they had already compromise and negotiation with the governmentin Mariwanand also its radical position, especially after the Kak Foad’s death, was further because of the ideological conflict with the religious government not the Kurdish nation question only. In Nawshirwan Mustafa’s words, “the KTROI didn’t believe that they can reach any peaceful solution for the Kurdish question through conversation with the Iranian religious government. But they told that they participate in the negotiations for ‘disclosure’, namely for disgracing the regime. The radical forces named any flexibility of the KDPI as ‘compromising’ and used it as a tool for propagation against them” (Mustafa Amin, 1998, 133). When KDPI joined the ‘National Council of Resistance of Iran’ 10, theyalso criticized this party and protested the acceptance of a ‘very important text’ about the autonomy of Kurdistan that it might to be interpreted in various ways in future and it doesn’t have any guarantee. The council’s document abstains from using the ‘Kurdish nation’ term. Besides, Komala couldn’t accept the pact between KDPI and Banisadir, the first president of Islamic Republic of Iran, who had a very active role in the war against the Kurds. He had determinant role in consolidating the regime and afterwards his presence in the council was inacceptable for Komala and its ally Sheikh Ezzadin (Mofidi, 2006). Another case that shows the importance of Kurdish question for Komala organization was its reaction to the policy of Ranjbaran Party of Iran about the government’s stance and attack on Kurdistan. Komala never accepted to make relation with them. One of the main groups within this party was the ROTP, which after the 1979 revolution had changed their front, supported the government, and didn’t show any reaction against its attack on Kurdistan, though they were familiar with the Kurdistan people’s struggles. But when the conflict between them and the government emerged, they came back Kurdistan once again. In that time, Komala refrained from any relation with the Ranjbaran Party because of the importance of Kurdish question for Komala, Ranjbaran’s detour from Marxist principles, and their closeness to the Islamic Republic so that this party was, in Komala’s words, ‘on the other side of the line’, though they had almost same ideology. But whilst the national question was important for them in this stage, Komala had some theoretical and practical weaknesses that some of them are mentioned as following: 1- Inattention to the Interests of Whole Kurdish Nation: Contrary to the other Kurdish parties, Komala didn’t follow a total policy in favor of the Kurdish nation’s interests especially because of its nationalist weakness. It was a remarkable weakness for a Kurdish party that it could has led to conflict with the parties of other parts of Kurdistan. In this regard, one of the Komala’s mistakes in this stage was the suggestion and insistence on writing the 8th article of ‘8 articles plan of Mahabad’ that it was of their 9 “An interview with Sheikh Ezzadin Hosseini”, as appendix in the referenced book 10A council including the various persons and organizations formed on 21 July 1981 by the People's Mujahidin Organization of Iran in Tehran that afterwards was transformed to France. Its aim was to unite all the Islamic Republic’s opposition forces in order to collapse it. Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 34 first stands against the Kurdish forces and eventually creating cleavage within the Kurdish movement in favor of the government. Although the Temporary Leadership11 of Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iraq (KDP) also had some mistakes, this article based on any reason, shows the Komala’s misunderstanding of the political sensitive situation of Kurds and, on the other hand, the lack of enough cognition about the government’s politics. The article asserts: “Since Mala Mustafa Barzani and the Temporary Leadership group have been and are the agents of US’s CIA and King Regime of Iran’s SAVAK and Turky’s MIT, and they are hated by the Kurdish people, we request the revolutionary government to rupture any relation and contact with this group, and oust their perfidious leaders from Iran without endamaging to the situation of the poor refugee families through this policy” (The Bloody War…, 1979, 12). In Salah Mohtadi’s words, a political activist and very supporter of Komala from the beginning, this article was the suggestion of Kak Foad that as one of the representatives of Mariwan town council along with the other Kurdish political leaders had participated in the meeting of the Kurdistan cities’ councils in Mahabad, which led to an eight articles resolution. About its reason, he says: “The Temporary Leadership helped the Khans and feudal of Mariwan region to oppose the ‘Peasants Union’, so Kak Foad suggested the article. Since the Temporary Leadership are here, out of their country, and they are armed and don’t have other ways, it is natural to be used as a tool by the government against the Kurdish movement in Iran. [So,] we should demand their ousting” (Kaykhosrawi, 2007). The conflicts between the peasants union’s Peshmargas and Temporary Leadership’s Peshmargas, and the words and stands of Kak Foad, himself, against this party approve this issue.12 From a nationalistic viewpoint, the above-mentioned justifications were not acceptable. Mala Mustafa Barzani has had a special position among the Kurds. Secondly, the political relations of various Kurdish parties with other countries were in fact compulsory and for the people and Kurdish parties such demand against a Kurdish party was not basically acceptable. On the other hand, it was because of the lack of enough knowledge about the policy of relevant countries on the Kurds and the situation of political Kurdish forces. Afterwards, when the war between Kurdistan and Iran started and they were forced to leave Iran and went Southern Kurdistan, Komala regretted of suggesting such article. Salah Mohtadi whilst approving the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iraq (KDP) and their subsequent works for the Eastern Kurdistan’s Kurds expresses its regret as such: “Unfortunately this article led to the more conflicts, but it is a work fulfilled in history, who can deny the history?” (Kaykhosrawi, 2007). Indeed, it was because of the ideological conflict with the KDP that was seen as bourgeois nationalist and supporter of the feudal lords. And this Komala’s stand was under the effect of their relation with the PUK that had conflict with the KDP. This conflict affected the Komala’s relations with both KDP and KDPI. Furthermore, the Komala’s rigorous stand especially by its leadership from the beginning, against the other Kurdish forces and their leaders in Eastern Kurdistan including the KDPI and the Islamic trends like Maktab Qur’an, was another political mistake that damaged total politics of the Kurdish movement.13 For instance, while this view of Komala was a true foresightthat negotiation with the government about the Kurdish question is futile and without result, using it against the other Kurdish forces was directly in the line of the government’s aims. Besides, the Komala’s vigorous opposition with forming a general Kurdish Party including all classes for Kurdistan by Abdurrahman Zabehi based on the Jalal Talabani’s14 suggestion and under the leadership of Sheikh Ezzadin can be mentioned (Karimi, 2005, 341). That it was also against Maoist approach. 2- Theoretic Weakness: As already mentioned, Komala was ideologically Marxist-Leninist with mostly Maoist orientation during these years. But their practice was sometimes in conflict and contradiction with both the Lenin and Mao’s theories, which such weaknesses have been repeated during the Komala history in various ways. In Mazyar Behrooz’s words: “Komala from the beginning was a Maoist organization that obviously suffered from the ideological weaknesses, and for theoretic guidance it 11The Temporary Leadership was a group of the remnants of the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iraq that after the 1975 Algiers Agreement between Iran and Iraq, and the failure of Kurdish movement, came to Iran and temporarily led the party. 12In this regard, his speech for the Mahabad Community in summer, 1979, approve it. See the text of speech in: Mustafa-sultani, 2006, pp. 148-172. 13In this regard, see the stands of Kak Foad in his speech in Mahabad that violently and with utmost pessimism talks about the KDPI’s leadership, at: Mustafa-sultani, 2006, pp. 176-77. 14 The leader of PUK and the first president of Iraq after Saddam Sabah Mofidi 35 relied on the non-Kurdish Iranian organizations like ‘Paykar’. Though Kurdistanwas a rural and agrarian region, Komala reckoned itself as the fugleman of Kurdish proletariats and the KDPI as the representative of bourgeoisie” (Behrooz, 2001, 222-3). While, firstly, Maoism gives the main role to the peasants and proletarian Marxism give it to the working class. But, on the contrary, Komala raised the proletarian slogans that according to the Lenin interpretation on peasants, this anti-bourgeoisie stands covers the peasants too, though it had relied on the peasant force and practically had most influence among the peasants and rural masses and especially in that time in fact there was no an important proletariat in Kurdistan, unlike the industrial societies. And as Amir Hasanpoor sys: “If J.K. Komala15, just talked on the exploitation of peasants, the ‘Revolutionary Komala’ practically advocated them.” And its main indicator was the activities of ‘Peasants Union’ in Mariwan. And, secondly, on the one hand, their Maoist idea had defects, since this thought cannot be only confined to the communication with peasants, founding peasant union, political instruction and the principles of class and Guerilla war, but it had to insist on the unity of classes in the line of Kurdish nationalism. It had to abstain from any slogan against the Kurdish bourgeoisie as a part of an oppressed nation, while there was basically no such specifiedclasses in Kurdistan. On the other hand, the opposition with bourgeois nationalism of oppressed nations is against the Lenin’s commitment that for him the unity between workers and peasants was necessary during revolution, though they have the bourgeois tendencies. Besides, during the protests of Mariwan town in 1979, they acted on the contrary to the Mao’s theory, namely moving from the rural areas towards cities. Though they claimed that they had domination on the city, but eventually during the town council’s negotiation with the government, by a four articles agreement in favor of the government, they agreed to surrender the town to the Iranian military. And based on some vagarious promises, the Komala forces went out from the town (Mustafa-sultani, 2006, 33). So, it can be said that komala had practically faced a kind of ‘theoretic conflictand contradiction’. Whilst Komala was seemingly a Marxist-Leninist organization with Maoist idea, but because of the theoretic weakness and being dependent to the Iranian Left movement, it was clearly under the effect of the proletarian Marxist slogans. And it is practically seen in the Komala’s various stands. For example: 1- In this stage, unlike the first congress’s decisions on cooperation with non-Marxist groups, Komala sometimes criticized the people and Kurdish bourgeoisie as well as the Islamic Republic of Iran. Under the effect of the Iranian Left, every movement and organization in Kurdistan with different degrees of nationalism were labeled as bourgeois, feudal and so on by the radical Leftists. While as Jalal Talabani had jocularly told to Komala leaders: “The feudal of Kurdistan has formed the communist party of Kurdistan.” 2- Very soon after the victory of 1979 revolution, Komala started the class war, like the war between the Peasants Union and the so called feudal in Mariwan, as already mentioned. In this regard, according to Kak Foad, himself, the case of the war with the landlords in the Jujou Khanaga village in Mariwan led to killing 2 persons of the feudal, can be mentioned.16 Or, its war with the feudal of Diwandara and Saqiz regions that led to killing and injuring a few people from both sides, and the weapons, agricultural equipments like Combine, Tractor and so on were seized by Komala (Mustafasultani, 2006, 247). Besides, Faroq kaykhosrawi mentions some cases of Komala’s attempts to start the war between the peasants and feudal that he had neutralized them (Keykhosrawi, 2007). While in that times, as Salah Mohtadi mentions, practically “the feudal, in its real meaning, hadn’t remained in Kurdistan” (Mohtadi, 2007). And, the extension of such conflicts was not basically in favor of resolving the Kurdish question. Afterwards, Kak Foad, himself, perceived the ideological-political mistakes and in some occasions tried to justify them, but he was not given the opportunity of reformby his killing. So that he reckoned the slogan against capitalism as a mistake, that had mostly been inclined towards merchants, and he thought on attracting them (Mustafa-Sultani, 2006, 180). And, whilst he mentions that most of the peasant Peshmarga had joined them because of the Kurdish right not their slogan, says that: “In Mariwan (for example) the peasants issue is not question, because there are almost about ten villages that the landlords have more land to recapture.” Besides, he says, “this slogan cannotbasically be raised in Mariwan and Hawraman, since 15 The J.K party, ‘Komeley Jiyanewey Kurdistan’ (Revival of Kurdistan Party), was proclaimed in 1942 that became the KDPI in 1945. 16 See, the text of Kak Foad’s speech in Mahabad that almost the whole of it is about the activities of union, Peshmarga forces and conflict with feudal, at: Mustafa-Sultani, 2006, pp. 148-172. Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 36 there is not land, everywhere is mountain”(ibid, 174). And for him the main problems were the unemployment of farmers, their seasonal migration, welfare and insurance for them.17 So, he practically questioned his own move, since for resolving these problems there was no need to all those slogans, conflicts and class war among the people and peasants. Instead of that, he had to try to make the peasants aware and to unite them with the other classes and mass people of Kurdistan to gain their rights against the government. Despite these, it can be said that apart from the temporary ideological-political mistakes that are possible for any party and organization especially the new ones, Komalain this stage was a Kurdish organization with a fair social position that under the effect of circumstances of that time in Kurdistan and the nationalistic sentiments of people, gave significance to the national question. And even it sometimes had more radical policy than the other Kurdish parties toward the Kurdish question. But because of the weaknesses that were partly mentioned, this process was not continued and in the next stage within the CPI, their view on the Kurdish national question practically faced the basic challenges. Second Stage: Komala within the Communist Party of Iran (1982-2000) From the beginning, as mentioned, there was a trend in Komala that unlike the KDPI viewed the Kurdistan struggle from the angle of a Marxist revolution in Iran and they mostly pursued this thought under the internationalist slogans. As in answer a question about having the Kurdish thought, Saed watandust, one of the komala and CPI’s founders and a member of the present CPI, says: “The Kurdish thought in the meaning of considering just the interest of Kurdish nation, not… our thought originally is internationalist” (Mohammadzadeh, 2007a). Thus, this trend viewed Komala as an organization that has dominated on the national and ethnic limitations. This feature distinguished Komala from the other Kurdish leftist or Marxist groups. However, the thought of the Marxist trendt hat opposed any kind of nationalism gradually grew within Komala under the effect of Iranian Left movement until eventually dominated on the thought of giving priority to the national question, and finally led Komala to a direction that accepted to be united with a few small groups and cores of the Iranian non-Kurdish leftists like Minority Wing of IPFGO, Sahand, Paykar and so on, to form the CPI in 1982. It should be noted that Kak Foad also had already this presumption about forming such a party and had stated that if the Iran’s changes go towards unity, its prerequisiteis the formation of the ‘Communist Party of Iran’, although according to the Marxism principles a nation has the right of separation and having aseparate party (Mustafa-Sultani, 2006, 200). Before the forming of CPI, there were some debates between Komala and other small left groups to form such a party. Among these small groups, the ‘Union of Communist fighters’ (Sahand)18 was remarkable that practically instead of ‘Paykar’ became the ideological guidance for Komala. In this relation, a common plenum betweenthe Komala’s central committee and this group in order to try to form such a party was launched. The plan of forming the CPI was similar to the unity of Azerbaijan Democratic Party and Tudeh Party of Iran during 1950s. Komala had the mass position and organizing power, and the smaller groups provided theoretic foundation of the new party. When Komala accepted the orthodox communist parties as its pattern and became the Kurdish brunch or Kurdish wing within the CPI and made the important changes, enounced that the constituent congress of the party has ratified the changes and launched a ceremony in a village between Sine and Kamyaran for the formal announcement of the CPI’s establishment. Mansoor Hekmat (Joobin Razani), Abdullah Muhtadi, Ebrahim Alizadeh, Hamid Taghwaiyy, Irej Azari can be mentioned as some of the party’s founders (Mohammadzadeh, 2007a; Behrooz, 2001, 222-3; Mustafa-Sultani, 2006, 285), that Abdullah Muhtadi and Ebrahim Alizadeh were respectively selected as the common secretariat of the party and the secretariat of its Kurdish brunch (Entessar, 2003, 63-66). This party after establishment issued a journal under ‘the Communist’. According to what was mentioned above, it can be said thatthe Komala’ name was changed to the ‘Communist Party’, since expect for a few people from the small organizations, all the other cadres were from Komala. As thepresent ‘Toilers Revolutionary Komala’ (after the split in 2000), themselves, asserts that “the CPI, itself, was formed during a certain historical period of the Iranian Left’s life relying basically on Komala, its position in Kurdistan and its popularity among the Iranian left” (About Present Position…, 2001). Besides, they mention that: “We constituted an organization under the CPI that its constitutive 17In this regard, see his answers to the questions in Mahabad speech, at: Mustafa-Sultani, 2006, pp. 174- 180. 18It was founded by Mansoor Hekmat and Hamid Taghwaiy in November -December, 1978. Sabah Mofidi 37 forces, except for Komala, didn’t have any social position out of Kurdistan. They were not the representative of any part of working class and any social movement, and were not socially and politically well-known, and even had been far away from the radical socialist left of that time” (A Resolution on…, 2000). But, however, the party was formed and Komala became its Kurdish brunch in Kurdistan. And, while it didn’t has enough influence out of Kurdistan, komala seemingly kept its separate leadership, command hierarchy and journal, and it had the right to decide free from the leadership of the new party (Behrooz, 2001, 222-3). In spite of this, as some cases will be mentioned, otherwise, in fact the classical Marxism and the CPI’s program dominated on the Komala’s nationalist aspect. Contrary to the KDPI which keeping its moderation and hegemony, never allowed a few people of any party who have come to Kurdistan to take everything in their hand, Komala because of its inexperience and theoretic weakness practically from 1983 upward became subordinate to the non-Kurdish small groups and from this time the Marxist thoughts of Iranian Left dominated on Komala and it became the infantry of the CPI. And gradually, this party rejected the primary ideological orientation of Komala under the claim that it is not fair to the Kurdistan’s conditions. After 1983, Komala didn’t have practically any clear plan for the Kurdish question which was concealed by other issues. It was contrary to the most of Left groups and communist parties of other countries especially the multi-national societies that have had the clear plans to solve the question of nationalities and demanded the self-determination for various nations under autonomy or federalism like the communist party of Belgium that supported the federalism (Mansoori Hamlabadi, 2002, 107). So, gradually the ‘program of autonomy’ for Kurdistan that enacted in one of its congress, was forgotten as the words of the CPI’s leaders show it. Barzan Hasanpoor, one of the leaders of the remnants of CPI (after 2000), mentioning the existence of the right of self-determination from secession to the equal right of citizens in the history of their plan, in criticizing the federalist plan of KTROI and autonomy, says: “Such plans not only don’t resolve the national question, but also only make the question more complicated ….” And, practically in favor of the Iranian nationalism declines the self-determination to the citizenship right (Hesami, 2002b). However, Komala left the frame of a Kurdish party, so that it sacrificed the Kurdish national interests to the ideological interest. As Abdullah Mohtadi in his discussion on the‘three sides of triangle’ namely the Islamic Republic of Iran, KDPI and Komala, gave priority to war with the KDPI. The internal war between Komala and KDPI and its continuationwas partly the result of these changes in Komala, though both of them had some mistakes. In this regard, Abdullah Mohtadi incriminates Masoor Hekmat as the main guilty and says: “Mansoor Hekmat imposed the war with KDPI on us.” The words of Mansoor Hekmat, himself, also confirm this point, as he says: “If we don’t prevent the KDPI, it doesn’t allow us to have the communist propagandas” (Mofidi, 2006). So, the leaders of CPI didn’t consider the question of nationality and covered it under the special rhetoric and general Marxist mottos such as ‘the overthrow of capitalism, and establishing the workers government, abolition of piecework, private possession, reaching a free human society and the communist equality and…” (Hesami, 2007). The theoretic group of CPI, the Iranian small left groups, as mentioned, pursued the hegemony of proletarian and classical Marxism thought in favor of the Iranian nationalism and practically suppressed the Kurdish nationalist tendencies of Komala under the idealistic and romanticist mottos and the rights of all Iranian workers. In the line of their nationalistic aims, they practically left some Marxist-Leninist principles like the self-determination and just spoke on the Iranian proletariat that indeed didn’t include Kurdistan, since it was not an industrial society. And for suppressing the national question in Kurdistan, it tried to impose their idea through labeling the people who have Kurdish nationalist tendencies. Naser Hesami, anex-member of Komala, says: “The Communist Party during its history labeled every person or group separated from them as pro-KDPI, motivated by PUK, pro Khatami and Hajariyan, the inflator of PKK, the cooperator of Ettelaat and pro imperialist tendencies” (Hesmai, 2007). In this relation, the existence of the old trend within Komala also who had such tendencies and they had been affected by the Iranian left, had provided a ground to impose this idea. As Saed Watandust says that: “Maintaining and keeping the Left for the communists in Kurdistan was our aim… If our conflicts in the Communist Party don’t serve the Left and communist movement in Kurdistan and Iran, it has gone far away from its own aims.” In answering a question on the lack or existence of non-Kurdish among the founders of Komala, he says: “of its founders, I don’t remember that there had been anybody [non-Kurdish] within it, but it has never been a condition, because the thought of Komala was not a national thought, it is not such that it confines itself to a nation. We now have some cadres that maybe have been with Komala for 30 years, the question is not they are Kurdish or non-Kurdish, but is that how they try for the Komala’s thought” (Mohammadzadeh, 2007a). Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 38 Nevertheless, such a thought cannot be generalized to the all Komala’s primary leaders, because along with their internationalist thought, they regarded the desires of Kurdish nation which themselves came out from it, as some of their already mentioned stands showed it in the first stage. However, such thoughts were willingly or unwillingly in favor of the dominantnation’s nationalism or indeed Iranian abstract nationalism. In the early 1990s, although the CPI confessed that Kurdistan in comparison with Tehran, Khuzestan and other industrial centers of Iran has remained under developed and there are a few industrial institutions and the small working class in Kurdistan, it also believed that the dominant contexture and mostly rural of the region has changed since the mid 1960s and the majority of the working forces of Kurdistan work out of the agricultural section. And, also, their analysis was that the process of urbanity within underdeveloped economy of the region derived from some factors like Mohammad Reza Shah’s land reform, the victory of revolution, the conflicts between the Islamic Republic and Peshmarga forces, and the Iraq-Iran war, has tragically changed the social-economic structures of Kurdistan. So, this region cannot be no more viewed as a rural society with the domination of the old relations and dominant tribal linkages and traditional peasant lifestyle. According to this analysis, this process has increased up to the point that in the early 1990s, the class structure in Kurdistan showed the existence of two distinguished classes: A large stipendiary proletariat and a small financier class. Because of the emergence of this new class structure, they reckoned the previous Maoist analysis as valueless and invalid to analyze the Iranian Kurdistan’s situation (Entessar, 2007, 97-99). Based on such analysis, Komala rejected its previous Maoist idea. About the above-mentioned analysis, considering two points is necessary. First, after the land reform in Iran, 1963, many small Left groups emerged in Iran, but like their predecessor, the TPI, they also relied on the struggle in cities, and the proletariat of large industrial cities. Because, according to some theories, the villages in Iran have practically and politically been passive. And since the reforms had basically conflict with the communist tendencies and led to make more but smaller private possession, had negative effect on the Left movement in Iran, and it can also be supposed as the Shah’s politics against his staunch oppositions, the leftists. On the contrary, in Kurdistan because of controlling the cities and towns by security forces of the government and being non-industrial, the rural have often had an active role in supporting the movements, though the leaders of the new movements have mostly been from cities. Besides, the land reform was in favor of the peasants and farmers, not the feudal who Komala raised motto against them. And the situation of peasants before the reform was worst. Some believe that the reform led to the division of lands, less income, and eventually sale of the lands and migration to the cities. But, on the contrary, it led to the private possession of peasants and more outcomes. Before that the main profits was for big landlords. The land reform was practically in favor of the peasants who have petty bourgeois tendency, in Lenin’s words. After the reform, peasants had more freedom of action. During the seasons of unemployment also they could to go to the industrial cities outside of Kurdistan. So, they had a better life than past who were subordinate to the big landlords and Khans.It even decelerated the migration to cities for a period. Secondly, the CPI didn’t consider this point that after the war also the government because of the security and political reasons and separatism has not practically wanted to enterprise in Kurdistan so that it leads to the two distinguished main classes. The financiers also under the effect of this propagation, avoided from investment. So, even now talking on such distinguished classes under the effect of industrialization is difficult. And it shows the existence of national question in Kurdistan and also the importance of political question as a part of the Marx’s superstructure that without its solution the socialeconomic development and other problems is very slow and practically impossible. Thus, any analysis without considering this questionis practically defective. Besides, after the war, appearance of a relative welfare, the growth of population, the increasing of people’s expectations and the existence of second and third degree agricultural lands especially in Mountainous regions of Kurdistan were naturally the effective factors of migration to the cities and increasing the working class. So, it cannot be said that the appearance of working class was the result of the land reform and war only. And these daily and non-industrial workers in Kurdistan’s cities are practically passive and cannot affect the government’s policy. Contrary to the industrial workers, they don’t have some political tools like strike and so on to put pressure on the government and don’t have the workers unions and political solidarity. So, in comparison with the industrial workers and even peasants who have financial independence, they don’t have a remarkable political activity because of the lack of political awareness, fear of the subsequent economic-social problems and so on. Sabah Mofidi 39 However, the hegemony of Iranian proletarian Marxism thought with its defective analysis on the CPI led to rejecting the previous and more Maoist ideas of Komala, which at leastby correct understanding and interpretation and trying to indigenize, it could be in favor of the solution of national question. In the first stage, Komala partly had a strong nationalist aspect under the effect of nationalist trend and the conditions of that time. Indeed, they had a type of national communism and along with the wills of Kurdish nation any idea could be existed. But the CPI has not practically believed in the national question and in Lenin’s words they have been ‘indifference’, though in its documents some Kurdish rights have been mentioned because of its Kurdish brunch and members. It means that the Komala’s approach about the Kurdish national question in the second stage was practically neither Leninist nor Maoist. And they pursued weakening the nationalistic sentiments of Komala and Kurdish people that it had vigorous negative effect on the Kurdish freedom movement. The hegemony of this thought on the CPI can be viewed in the effect of its tactical ally with the Revolutionary Leadership brunch of KDPI as a nationalist trend, after the war between them (about 1987 upwards), on the internal situation of the party. This ally made a cleavage within the CPI thatit culminated during the 16th plenum of its central committee in November 1989. In this meeting, some of the committee’s members attacked the ‘rightist, perverted and nationalistic’tendencies that had grown within Komala and demanded to oust those responsible for this growth from their posts and positions. It led to purify the undesirables from Komala, in their words, and returned the ideological unity to the leadership (Entessar, 2007, 100-101). It is obvious that this stand was only against the Kurdish nationalism in that party not Iranian nationalism, since the Persians practically don’t have the national question and indeed the party indirectly worked in the line of the Persian-Iranian nationalism. Another negative function of the CPI that was against the total movement in Kurdistan was its enmity with religion without considering the role of religion in such traditional society. In Iran and Kurdistan, religion affects the behaviors of people and most of the social-political trends. In such societies, the practical policy of a political party should avoid from confrontation with religion, and it is not easy for an ideological party. So it can be led to the tensions and making the profound cleavages in society. For this reason, the discussions of the first congress in fall of 1978 show that most of the Komala’s primary founders didn’t want to face with the people’s religious beliefs so that they sometimes used the religious places and rituals and even put the clerics in their own side since they opposed the government in that time (see: Mustafa-Sultani and Watandust, 2015). But unlike this, the CPI by its function made another cleavage in the Kurdish movement and also stood in confront ofthe mass people including the peasants and workers, since religion has still preserved its position among these people and the situation of Kurdistan was different so that against the Shiites in capital, the Sunni religious forces and clerics were still in opposition like before the revolution, 1979. While they claimed to advocate the rights of them and, on the other hand, the Komala’s social position during the first stage was because of some religious people’s support like Sheikh Ezzadin. So, if during the first stage the conflict between the Islamic and Left forces because of their ideologies led to some clashes, in the second stage, the CPI located in confront of majority of the mass, not only an Islamic trend. Totally such measures were in favor of the government that used these conflicts in its already announced sacred war (Jihad) and to mobilize the people against Kurdish forces and separating the masses from the parties. So, from this viewpoint also, this party struck a severe blow to the Kurdish movement and the solution of Kurdish national question. It should be noted that the increasing of such stands were often because of the existence of a trend within the CPI that afterwards under the name of the ‘Worker Communist Party of Iran’ (Hekmatists) separated from the party under Mansoor Hekmat about the year 1990 and they still insist on their anti-religion rhetoric. After the above-mentioned split, Komala including the two old trends, nationalists and antinationalists, was almost the single organization within the CPI and most of the previous theoretic foundation and non-Kurdish cadres left it. As Watandust mentions, “what is named ‘the Communist Party’ in Iran is same with Komala. The CPI just has Komalaas organization. Its entire cadres also are same with Komala” (Mohammadzadeh, 2007a). Despite these, they remained under the CPI and followed its agenda and slogans, although it didn’t have practically influence in the other parts of Iran. However, this stage can be determined as the period of the hegemony of Iranian Left’s proletarian Marxism tendencies and the party’s efforts to suppress its internal Kurdish nationalistic desires. And, indeed, although seemingly the CPI’s policies was against the government, because of its special characteristics that placed it against the Kurdish forces and people’s sentiments, they were in favor of the government and practically in the line of the Iranian nationalism. And it theoretically generalized the analyses related to the Iranian industrial regions to Kurdistan regardless to its most important question Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 40 namely political equality and the solution of the national question, and also the negative viewpoint of the government about Kurdistan. Thus, the CPI by overshadowing komala and having conflict with the KDPI had become a control lever against the two main forces of Kurdistan and practically made the cleavage between them more profound in favor of the government, while the solution of Kurdish national question was the master key to resolve other issues. But, despite about two decades activity and its above-mentioned attempts, this party was eventually divided because of its policy and pressing its internal various wings which even afterwards has been also continued in the other form in its remnants, according to some party’s members like Jafar Aminzadeh and Saed Watandust (Mohammadzadeh, 2007a). Deepening the internal conflicts, gradually, some remarkable Komala leaders with awareness on the party’s weaknesses, this reason that Komala from the beginning has been a Kurdish organization, the importance of solving the national question in Kurdistan, and also under the effect of the changes of Southern Kurdistan in 1990s, byaccepting their mistake to form the CPI, decided to reconstruct Komala. Third Stage: the Split of CPI and Reconstruction of Komala After the separation of the Worker-Communist party, the two primary trends of Komala, nationalists and anti-nationalists, continued their activity under the CPI. But the internal conflicts that were often related to the Kurdish nationalist tendencies gradually enhanced and it was insufferable for the party. This party could no longer to do its task to contain these tendencies. Eventually under the effect of the changes of international system and Southern Kurdistan that led to make a nationalistic climate in Kurdistan like what was happened after the revolution, 1979, that the Kurdish nationalism had hegemony on Komala, the first above-mentioned trend, the nationalists, separated from the party. This trend, almost with a thought similar to the Komala’s first stage, under Abdullah Mohtadi in 2000 and with its own old name Komala – Kurdistan Toilers Revolutionary Organization of Iran, was formally separated and started its reconstruction and revival as a Kurdish organization to have activity in the Kurdistan political arena. And once again according to the Kurdistan situation, they gave priority to the Kurdish national question in their programs. Afterwards, also a group under Omar Ilkhanizadeh, almost with the same aims and thought, separated from the KTROI and formed the party of ‘Kurdistan Toilers Komala’ in 2007. Therefore, practically four organizations came to existence from the CPI, which two of them, the Worker Communist and the remnants of the CPI under the same name, with outdated rhetoric, anti nationalistic tendencies and regardless to the national question of Iranian nationalities have often activity out of Iran. And practically among the mass especially in the other region of Iran are unknown, though in fact they have the Iranian nationalist tendencies. The others, two Kurdish organizations of Komala, have activity in the Kurdistan political arena considering the national question. In the reconstruction conference of Komala on August 6, 2000, whilst Komala as a socialist political organization of workers claimed that it has to lead both the workers and similarly the Kurdish nation struggles in the line of the right of self-determination. So they rejected some cases of reports to the 8th congress of the CPI in 1995 since, in their opinion, those reports had not been correct from the Marxist viewpoint and had also given more privileges to the ‘bourgeois nationalist’ groups in the Kurdistan movement and had marginalized them or in fat separated them from the Kurdish movement. And they rectified that Komala in its history has had an important role in the Kurdish movement. They mentioned that: “The truth is that Komala as a radical socialist trend of society and as the pro-workers and toilers of Kurdistan, and from this viewpoint, has had a firm relationship with the movement of Kurdistan and it is also one of the important sources of the social influence of Komala” (A Resolution on…, 2000). In this regard and in relation with considering the national question, the constitution of KTROI (part I, article 1) mentions that: Komala is a gonfalonier of the struggle to extend democracy and the democratic rights of people and the political liberties, the struggle to the salvation of oppressed women and the salvation of masses of Kurdistan from the national oppression and [….] Komala as an progressive and leadership party of Kurdistan workers have organized and led the freedom movement of Kurdish nation to gain the right of self-determination and securing the sovereignty of the Kurdish people on their land in its different arenas, and fights to fructify itand its victory (Constitution of KTROI, 2001). After one year of having independent activity, Komala talks on return to the Kurdistan political arena as such: The vast welcoming of masses in the cities and villages of Kurdistan in such short period caused Komala to find itself in the middle of Iranian Kurdistan political arena and showed that the Sabah Mofidi 41 revival of the independent activity of Komala and the leaving of the organized format of the CPI not only didn’t lead to the weakening of Komala but also it was a political action based on understanding and the responsibility to a political necessity considering the interests of the revolutionary movement in Kurdistan and in the line of the total interests of the socialist trend in Kurdistan and Iran…. And it can surely be said that the reconstruction project of Komala has been successful (About Present Position…, 2001). In this relation, the 8th conference of Komala in 2003 that was about ‘Democracy in Iran’, proposed an 8 articles platform to gathering the all forces who demand democracy and real freedom around it, which the article number 8 mentions that: According to the history and the historical, cultural and geographical characteristics of the resident people of Iran as a multinational country, resolving the national oppression of the resident peoples of the country and all ethnic groups in Iran, is one of the main bases to establish democracy in Iran. The most convenient way to manage the government in Iran is the non-central administration based on the federal system. By this way the right of the sovereignty of all peoples in the country for internal affairs of their historical homeland is recognized, their participation in managing the central government is granted, and the new and democratic concept of Iranian citizenship that has been accrued based on brotherly and freely unity of all nationalities, will be realized (Democracy in Iran…, 2003). Afterwards also, the KTROI in its tenth congress in August 2004 supported the federal system for Iran and with a clear stand about the national question, as one of the important Kurdish organizations that its apparent centre located out of the country, has continued to its activity inthe Kurdistan political arena. It is also a member of the Congress of Nationalities for a Federal Iran (CNFI). However, after the separation of Komala, the nature of the CPI, its enmity and unbelief to solve the Kurdish question and attempt to suppress the Kurdish nationalist tendencies were appeared more than past. The internal conflict in the CPI and the growth of its conflicts with Komala onthe national question is better appeared in the words and writings of their members in the organs of these two segregated organizations that some of them were already mentioned. About this issue, Naser Hesami says: “This is a long time that in the literature of the CPI, the ‘oppressed Kurdish nation’ has been replaced with the ‘Iranian citizenships residing in Kurdistan’ and they label all the history of the Komala’s struggle for the right of ‘oppressed Kurdish nation’as ‘ethnocentrism’” (Hesami, 2002a). In this relation, Bahram Rahmani, one of the leaders of the CPI’s remnants, in 2004 about Komala had said: “The nationalistic group so-called the ‘Kurdish Toilers’ under Abdullah Mohtadi which separated from Komala few years ago, speedily leaped towards the nationalistic and imperialistic tendencies” (Hesami, 2007). These words confirm the claims of Naser Hesami and the CPI’s anti Kurdish nationalist thought. It shows that Komala in the CPI in fact faced with the same critique which itself already had on the KDPI related to entry tothe National Council of Resistance and not using the ‘Kurdish nation’ term by the council. But, eventually by breaking away from it, they revealed the Iranian nationalistic aims of the CPI. So, when the CPI practically went far away from the primary aims of Komala and didn’t consider its demands, most of the old members of Komala – the nationalistic trend – gradually regretted their mistakes and being within the party. In this regard, Naser Hesami says: “I didn’t go towards the CPI. It was that party came towards me and hundreds of the other Kurdistan’s revolutionists as a black chance. I was a Komala’s Peshmarga and had chosen that before the birth of the CPI…I wish the CPI had never appeared on the way of Komala. It was this party that grabbed and lost the dedication and attempts of hundreds revolutionists” (The Leper Birds…, 2005). Despite these, Komala again has sometimes repeated some mistakes that somehow derived from the residuum of the CPI’s proletarian Marxism thought. For example, they still repeat some slogans and terms like ‘bourgeois nationalism’ and so on that it is not in favor of Kurdish movement in this transition stage, while the abstinence from them, is in the line of internationalism. And as Lenin mentions, ‘the nationalism of oppressed nations’ does not have objection with Marxism and the national movements have not only to be seen in favor of bourgeoisie. Besides, in the line of the Mao’s opinion, the unity of classes (bourgeoisie, peasants and…) in favor of nationalism to fight against imperialism is necessary. So, using such the terms that are just applied to show their Marxist identity and distinguishing from other parties, has indeed been in the line of the party’s policy only, unlike the communist parties of other nations that their real policy has often been in favor of nationalism and they have usually regarded the conditions of time and place and have often raised such slogans being in power. But, totally, in this stage, the Komala’s policies are become more realistic and pragmatic. And with this awareness that it, with any ideology, is a Kurdish organization without influence in the other parts Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 42 of Iranand, on the other hand, the affiliation to the Iranian parties leads to just their marginalization in the Kurdistan political arena; they give priority to the national question and the freedom struggle of Kurdish nation. And almost like the communist parties of other nations, along with keeping and advocating the Marxist ideology and principles, it has appeared as a pragmatist organization and it regards the real issues of Kurdish society which came out from and fights for it. It should be noted that, Komala and CPI, each one has its special satellite channel that the analysis of their program’s contentpartly shows the rate of considering the national question by them. The CPI in its TV, Komala TV, concentrates on the proletarian activity in various places of Iran and conceals the activities related to the issues of Iranian nationalities. On the contrary, the KTROI in its cannel, Rojhelat TV, has more concentration on the issues related to Kurdistan and the Iranian nationalities. For instance, about the students’ demonstration in the memorial of the student day on December 7, 2006, in Tehran, Rojelat TV and some other press agencies reported on the existence of three clear and main trends: the Kurds, Office for Consolidating Unity19and Lefts. They talked on the ‘Kurdish Student Movement’ as a main trend within the whole student movement of Iran. But, on the contrary, the Komala TV didn’t mention the activity of Kurdish students. It is in the line of the policy of ‘not highlighting the question of nationalities in Iran’ which some of the other opposition groups also pursue it.20 An Analysis on a vicissitudinous History Therefore according to what was mentioned about thehistory of Komala, this organization has had a history full of up and down; sometimes within the vortex of romanticism and sometimes under the pressure to escape from the realities, has attempted for maintaining its entity. Although because of various reasons especially the theoretic weakness and the lack of pragmatist and realistic view, Komala couldn’t accommodate Marxism tothe Kurdistan’s situation, by attracting the support of some personalities and giving priority to the Kurdish question and with the help of some theories that were more consistent with the conditions of Kurdistan or at least the regions under the influence of Komala (often rural), it had a remarkable and good growth in the first stage of its activity, though having some mistakes. During this stage through giving priority to the national question and the political rights of Kurdish nation, i.e. indeed giving priority to the elements of superstructure in Marxism, it played an important role in that timeas second Kurdish organization. But in the second stage and with forming the CPI by them, it went far away from the Maoist idea too, under the effect of some small Iranian Left groups and their analyses especially based on the existence of two distinguished classes of bourgeoisie and proletariat, regardless to this point that in Kurdistan there were no such classes in their real meanings, and a weak bourgeoisie and daily workers also were without organization and practically passive. They didn’t regard this point that unlike the Iranian Left movement which relied onthe industrial regions’ proletariat, Komala had lied on the rural peoples and peasants because of the existence of passive daily workers in the suburban areas and also prohibition of Komala’s activity in the cities. Besides, they were affected by the non-Kurdish theoretic core of the party regardless to these points that: the Iranian Left movement is practically ‘indifference’ and doesn’t believe in the right of ‘self-determination of nationalities’ and they pursue the Iranian or indeed Persian communism; except for the time they are in need, when they feel the power and are in relation with the centers of power and government, they forget Kurdistan; and the necessity of the union of various classes and Kurdish forces, instead of intensifying the various social conflicts like the confrontation with the Kurdish bourgeoisie, religious people and so on which practically were in the line of increasing the social cleavages in Kurdistan. So, in this stage, the CPI inclined towards suppressing the Kurdish nationalistic tendencies and it practically tried to detour the Kurdistan revolutionary movement. But the question of nationalistic tendencies as internal conflict remained in the party until the tolerance of such situation and conflicts was no more possible for both sides, the CPI and Komala. The party couldn’t control such situation to maintain some main Kurdish groups in the line of its aims. Eventually under the effect of the changes of international order and Southern Kurdistan, they separated and reconstructed Komala, though the party also has reserved its Kurdish brunch under the ‘Komala Organization’. However, the independent Komala once again as a Kurdish organization returned to the political arena of Kurdistan and has concentrated its activity on resolving the national question, though pursuing its socialist aims. What is obvious is that, although Komala emerged in a different condition, which was better than the conditions of the appearance of other Kurdish movements emerged before the Iranian revolution, 1979, 19Daftare Tahkime Wahdat (in Persian), is an Iranian student organization created in 1979. 20The News of Komala TV and Rojhelat TV on December 7, 2006. Sabah Mofidi 43 but from the perspective of political pragmatism, repeated some mistakes of themin its history. Bijan Jazani before the revolution in an analysis mentions three characteristics and basic shortages of the armed movement of the KDPI’s Revolutionary Committee, 1968, that Komala also somehow didn’t regard them. Although the Kurdistan’s situation partly changed, this analysis is considerable especially from the view of the national question: 1. The wrong analysis on the Kurdistan’s situation, socially, economically and politically. In Kurdistan, bourgeoisie has a little growth and the remnants of pastoral life are economically seen, and have culturally basic root. So, in Kurdistan there are the pastoral mode of productionand the weak urban bourgeoisie together. 2. The main conflict of Kurdistan is the conflict of Kurdish people with the Iranian central regime. The national and religious oppression has even eclipsed the class conflict. Thus, any political and militant movement has to be started according to this cognition, and the class conflict will act from the channel of national conflict. The obvious signs of this subject can be seen in the Kurdish movement and its history…. The anti-imperialist movement of Iran has another color in Kurdistan. There, the movement can be done directly against the regime and its administrative body under the autonomy for Kurdish people. The mass revolution in Kurdistan cannot be consolidated without the guaranty of this aim. 3. In Kurdistan, the tribal issue and bloody affinity plays an important role that gives hand in hand with the national conflict. While these social and economic factors act in Kurdistan, having regardless to them can be catastrophic. The execution of Kurdish Khans by the group implies on the full regardless to these two basic factors. The group's cognition of peasants’ situation and its strategy on the peasant war led to trust to peasants at the first stage and to contravene the principles of the jungle and mountain partisan warin the first stage (Jazani, 1978, 175-6). But, unlike other revolutionary Left organizations in the other parts of Kurdistan, Komala didn’t have constantly aregular and domestic program to consider the national question at least on a parallel with the Marxist socio-economic programs. For example, ‘Komalay Ranjdaran’, one of the constitutive organizations of the PUK in Southern Kurdistan, in such cases was at least successful as it raised the motto of ‘workers and oppressed nations of the world, unite’. In the programs’ preamble of their second conference in 1982, they stated: “Making a program to liberate, change and develop the society towards socialism, according to the conditions, and special to Kurdistan, based on the law and general introductions of Marxism-Leninism in the inappropriate conditions of Kurdistan, Iraq, region and the world … is an important issue and difficult work….” Besides, in the same conference and in the program of resolving the national question of Kurdish nation, in the first part, article 1, they stated: “The working class in Kurdistan live in an occupied and divided land that the solution of the national question of Kurdistan is the common aim, and their class interests, in this stage, appear in the national salvation and freedom, national reunion, democracy and social development” (Mustafa Amin, 1998, 378). So, this organization realistically regarding the international and regional conditions especially Kurdistan, looked at implementing the principles of Marxism and considered the unity of classes in the line of resolving the national question. The Left movement of Southern Kurdistan separated its way from the Iraqi parties especially the Communist Party of Iraq that it practically didn’t believe in resolving the Kurdish question, though during some stages it had the Kurdish leaders too. In an overview, regardless to their internal conflicts, they moved in the direction of resolving the Kurds’ national question. They moved against the Iraqi government just in parallel tothe other opposition groups and not under their domination. But within the radical Left movement of Eastern Kurdistan, this process was different and they didn’t regard the national and class issues in parallel so that it gave mostly priority to the class issues. And, they couldn’t separate their way and were under the hegemony of the Iranian Left movement until the third stage. They couldn’t be in unity with the other Kurdish forces to move in parallel to the non-Kurdish forces as opposition. Despite this, according to the history of Komala, its view on the national question during the three stages has been different. In the first and third stages, it has clearly given priority to this issue. And its views in the third stage have practically been more realistic and according to the Kurdish people’s view on it, as a Kurdish organization, and also its social position among the Kurdish people, it gained a better position among the forces of Eastern Kurdistan compared to the second stage. Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 44 Conclusion As at the beginning was mentioned, equality as one of the Left movement’s claims is a condition for realizing democracy. In addition, equality is not confined to just the economic equality. In a multiple society, the necessity of political equality is more tangible and without the equality of the nationalities, the socio-economic equality is partly impossible. So, often the Left movement has practically been in the line of the dominant nation’s interests. On the other hand, the tendency towards nationalism has not just been seen among the oppressed nations but also in some countries, which have not had the national question, the Left movement in the form of national communism has served the nationalistic tendencies. So, through various revisions in the Marxist theories, the Left movement for the accommodation with the different societies gradually distanced from the romanticism, primary idealism and the hegemony of considering the class oppression, and tended towards realism and considering the national interests. According to what was mentioned in the theoretical part, from Marx to Mao and after him, the ‘national question’ has been important, but the measure of the importancehas been different and in various revisions has changed, so that Marx was not totally unaware about the national question but because of the different conditionsand his distinct mental concern, he further considered the infrastructure (economy). In the Lenin’s theories, the more consideration to the national question is seen because of the appearance of various issues in his time, especially the right of nation’s self-determination. So he practically advocated this right. Apart from this issue, although he saw peasants somehow as bourgeois, he advocated the unity of classes especially peasants and workers. On the other words, he practically rejected this opinion that a class has to be bypassed because of its bourgeois nature even in the sensitive times. This process was intensified in the Mao’s thought and practically led to the unity of classes (bourgeoisie, peasant and…) in favor of nationalism. Apart from these main thoughts, in various countries of the socialist camp, especially in the revolutionary and sensitive times, Marxism gradually and practically tended towards the nationalistic tendencies because of the Marxist Leaders’ pragmatism. In the Soviet Union, though it was multinational, the national communism and indeed Russian communism appeared under Stalinism. And in China, Cuba and so on, Marxism whether has been in the line of the dominant ethnic group’s nationalism or national nationalism. So what Marx said away from the political power was different from what Lenin, Mao and Castro said or performed to reach the power or in power. And, the interpretations were different based on the various priorities, though they tried to keep some of the main principles of Marxism as axis. Furthermore, these peoples’opinions have been changed during the political sensitive times like the national danger, and have had the important turn towards the nationalistic policies. So, sometimes, in the different approaches and based on the various place-time conditions, the priorities have been different and the elements of superstructure such as the political rights have become important. And considering the solution of national question when it is the most important issue of a society and even is the barrier for gaining the other Marxist aims, has not been recognized against the Marxist principles. Accordingly, it can be said that based on the various conditions, the Left movements have practically and gradually tended from romanticism to realism. So, from the political realism viewpoint, the class war and tagging the freedom movement of an oppressed nation with various titles especially by some radical groups of the same nation, at the sensitive times for the nation’s destiny, is not anything but misunderstanding of Marxism and the political reality. In the line of the move of Marxism towards the national communism, the final move of the Iranian Left also was in the line of the Iranian abstract nationalism or in fact the dominant nation’s nationalism. The Iranian Left parties, above all the TPI, like the communist parties of other countries, have practically had the Iranian nationalism and from this view have looked at the Kurdistan movement and Kurdish question. They tactically and in necessity times that didn’t have the power of activity and political maneuver, and were outcasts of the capital, used Kurdistan as a centre to put pressure on the government in favor of their aims. Although the Iranian Left could never reach the majority of political power, according to the evidences and their previous function, if they had reached such success, their policies about Kurdish nation would have not been different from the nationalistic politics of the King regime and also the Islamic Republic, both created based on the Persian ethnicity. The function of some parties and groups proves this subject. Even, when they have had a little hope to remain within the frame of the dominant political power or gaining it, have changed their front against the Kurdish question. Apart from these, sometimes and in the necessity times that they see the national territory is in danger, in their opinion, or they have fear from the common enemy so-called imperialism, always an indirect agreement emerged among the all Iranian forces; Leftists, liberal oppositions, Pan-Iranists and the government. Despite this, the Iranian Left affected the Left movement of Kurdistan so much and it practically had hegemony on the main part of the radical Left Sabah Mofidi 45 forces, and through this, it swiped at the Kurdish movement that led to creating cleavage within it. These groups didn’t have the ‘national question’ and concentrated on the Marxist proletarian ideas and class conflict according to their industrial regions. And the radical Kurdish Left also without understanding the situation and conditions of Kurdistan, because of theoretic weakness, generalized and promulgated the ideas of the Iranian Left in Kurdistan. Therefore, the Iranian Left has often tried to direct the other movements in favor of the Persian-Iranian nationalism and its interests. In Kurdistan, it has tried to change the attention of the Kurdish movement from giving priority to the national question to the orthodox Marxist interpretations and inappropriate to the conditions of Kurdistan. The main part of Kurdish political forces like the KDPI, with awareness on the importance of giving priority to the national question under such conditions, because of their pragmatist and experienced leaders could save themselves from such trap, even despite some attempts for influence in these parties. But the other part, namely the radical Left, was totally under the hegemony of the Iranian Left in a stage that led to the weakness of considering the national question by them. On the whole, the Left movement in Kurdistan has had an effective role on the whole new Kurdish movement (especially after the World War II and the extension of political parties in Kurdistan). But this role and effect has been different in the four parts of Kurdistan. It can be said that in Northern Kurdistan, in Turkey, (especially PKK) almost an indigenous and pragmatist Left accommodated with Kurdistan emerged that separated its way from the Turkish Left and even affected it, and gave the priority to the national question. In Southern Kurdistan, in Iraq, the Left thought was partly on a parallel with nationalism and finally the Left parties turned in favor of nationalism. So in these two parts of Kurdistan the result of Left and national freedom movements has totally been realistic and in favor of the national question. But in Eastern Kurdistan, in Iran, there has been a different situation and the Left forces divided into two main trends; the moderate Left that has given priority to the national question (KDPI) and the radical Left (Komala). The ideological hegemony of Left on the radicals led to the conflict with the KDPI, Islamic trends and also people’s religious emotions that endamaged the national freedom movement of Kurdistan. Komala as the radical Left organization in Eastern Kurdistan has had a vicissitudinous history. It is maybe the only main Left organization in Kurdistan that related to the national question, under the effect of Iranian Left, in a stage had important mistakes, and practically moved against the whole Kurdish movement. The theoretic weakness, analyzing the situation of Kurdistan based on the Iranian Left’s interpretation on Marxism, misunderstanding the real conditions of Kurdistan, the existence of a traditional society and not regarding the class conflict from the national conflict channel, were the reasons for considering the class oppression more than the national question by Komala, though during the various stages of its history the measure of the consideration has been different. During the first stage, though Komala regarded the national question, but simultaneously it had a Marxist romanticism that led to their radical stands and also the class conflict. While from the real politics view, they had to tend towards the unity of classes in the line of resolving national question in this sensitive time since they had the Maoist claim. So, on a parallel with considering the national question, they launched the class conflict, the war between big landlords and peasants, and didn’t understand the necessity of the unity of classes in that sensitive time. And they raised the slogans of anti-capitalism, anti-bourgeoisie and… while the bourgeoisie was very weak in Kurdistan and there was no capitalism. Indeed, they had to advocate the oppressed nation’s nationalism and bourgeoisie against the capitalist system of the country and dominant nation. During the second stage, the national question was practically forgotten under the hegemony of the CPI. In the beginning, some things was theoretically written or said, but they practically didn’t have serious attempt in the direction of the national unity in Kurdistan and resolving the national oppression. And like the other Iranian Left groups and parties, this party’s activity also was in favor of the Iranian nationalism, though it was in opposition to the government. And without enough influence in the other regions of Iran, it sacrificed Kurdistan to its ideological and political ambition. And without considering the continual security view of the government and the lack of its investment, and the lack of industrial and organized proletariat but poor daily workers with a less income, they hoped to develop the class movement by the economic development and extension of proletariat in Kurdistan. So, they practically caused cleavage in the Kurdish movement and distorted and controlled an important part of it, while the main organization of the party was Komala and its Peshmerga forces. It wanted to attract the support of other parts of Iran and to extend its scope of activity under the CPI and then put more pressure on the government. But, on the contrary, it practically became a tool in the hand of the Iranian Left groups in the party, because of the lack of these groups’ good social position and their being unknown and also the special characteristics of the Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2016 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1, 20-48 ISSN: 2149-1291 46 Iran’s society. Whilst the radical Left of Kurdistan had to move not under the flag of the Iranian Left but in parallel to it and in united with the other Kurdish parties. But in the third stage and with the reconstruction of ‘Kurdistan Toilers Revolutionary Komala’, by separating its path from the CPI, it took some steps to resolve its past mistakes in the line of understanding the realities of Kurdistan society and giving priority to the national question. So, once again, it returned to the political arena of Kurdistan but with neither its first stage radicalism nor neglecting to the national question of the second stage. And as one of the main parties with good social position keeping some of its ideological principles, by tendency towards the practical politics and understanding the changes of international system, region and Kurdistan, and also under the effect of Southern Kurdistan’s changes, it tended towards the political realism and also national communism, based on the Marxian requirements. Thus, this organization advocates the federalism for Iran to resolve the question of the Iranian nationalities in its present program. From a realistic view on the oppressed nations’ national question, and in the line of the unity of classes in sensitive conditions, it should be said that the large freedom movements like the movement of Kurdistan, need the economic and financial support of nations’ capitalists. Especially nowadays and in the communication age that somehow the monopoly of state on the media facilities has been broken and the private section with its economic power that can be used by the movements could be more effective. Contrary to these realities, the radical Left thought deprived the Kurdish movement from this support and totally having an economic thought, especially in the past periods that practically led to some weaknesses in this movement. Because the national rights had to be pursued by the political rationality without ideological hullabaloo, even though it is apparently under the name of any ideology. So, any movement needs the political rationality based on the theoretical, intellectual and economical supports to victory. Therefore, there have been much weaknesses in the history of Eastern Kurdistan’s radical Left, because of; the lack of theoreticians for accommodating Marxism with the Kurdistan’s situations, creating ideological conflicts in Kurdistan society as the result of superficial view on Marxism, the existence of non-pragmatist Marxist leaders, the political immature and so on. But, despite this, the view of Komala-KTROI about the national question has been more realistic in the third stage. And in the line of the created changes in the practical thought of Marxism and indeed the indigenous Marxism accommodated with the place-time conditions of various societies, it has become more pragmatic and taken steps to realism. 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