Concerning Gonzalo Thought

Comrade Gonzalo's systematization of the guiding thought of the Communist Party of Peru and the Peruvian revolution.

Proletarians of all countries, unite!


Abimael «Gonzalo» Guzmán
January 1988

Red Flag Publications
Lima, 1989

Reproduced by
The Red Flag

This document was drafted by Comrade Gonzalo for the 1st Session of the 1st Congress of the Communist Party of Peru, which took place in January-February, 1988. In this major work, Gonzalo thought, the guiding thought of the Communist Party of Peru and the Peruvian revolution, was systematized. Together with the documents «On Marxism-Leninism-Maoism» and «Draft Programme of the Communist Party of Peru», this document constitutes the Fundamental Documents of the Communist Party of Peru, and together with «Bases of Discussion for the General Political Line of the Communist Party of Peru», it constitutes the basis of Party unity of the Communist Party of Peru.


All revolutions, in their process of development, through the struggle of the proletariat as the leading class and, above all, the struggle of the Communist Party that raises their unrenounceable class interests, generate a group of leaders and mainly one who represents and leads it, a leader with acknowledged authority and ascendency. In our reality this has materialized, on account of historical necessity and causality, in Chairman Gonzalo, leader of the Party and the revolution.

Moreover, and this is the basis upon which all Leadership is formed, revolutions give rise to a thought that guides them, the result of the application of the universal truth of the ideology of the international proletariat to the concrete conditions of each revolution; a guiding thought indispensable to reach victory and to conquer political power and, moreover, to continue the revolution and to maintain the course always towards the only, great goal: communism; a guiding thought that, arriving at a qualitative leap of decisive importance for the revolutionary process which it leads, becomes identified with the name of the person who shaped it theoretically and practically. In our situation, this phenomenon specified itself first as guiding thought, then as Chairman Gonzalo‘s guiding thought, and later, as Gonzalo thought; because it is the Chairman who, creatively applying marxism-leninism-maoism to the concrete conditions of Peruvian reality, has generated it; thus endowing the Party and the revolution with an indispensable weapon that is the guarantee of victory.

Gonzalo thought has been forged through long years of intense, tenacious, and incessant struggle to uphold, defend and apply marxism-leninism-maoism, to retake Mariátegui‘si path and to develop it, to refound the Party and mainly to initiate, maintain and develop the people‘s war in Peru serving the world revolution, and that marxism-leninism-maoism, mainly maoism, become in theory and practice its sole command and guide.

It is of substantive necessity for the Party to study Gonzalo thought for a more just and correct understanding of the general political line, and mainly of the military line, aiming at deepening the understanding of the particularities of the Peruvian revolution, what is specific and particular that Chairman Gonzalo has masterfully emphasized. In this way we serve the Great Plan to Develop Base Areasii, the development of the people‘s war and the perspective of conquering political power country-wide.

We must study Gonzalo thought, starting from the historical context that generated it; examine the ideological basis which sustains it; precisely specify its content, more substantially expressed in the general political line and in the military line that is its center; aiming at what is fundamental within it, the problem of power, of the seizure of power here in Peru, which is inextricably linked to the conquest of power by the proletariat in the whole world; and we must pay close attention to its forging in the two-line struggle.

In synthesis, these fundamental questions can be dealt with by applying the following outline:



In relationship to historical events:

1. The development since the 2nd World War onwards.

2. The powerful national-liberation movement and, within it, the process and triumph of the Chinese revolution.

3. The Cuban revolution and its repercussion on Latin America.

4. The great struggle between marxism and revisionism.

5. The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.

But the key point is to see how, in this great class struggle on the world level, Gonzalo thought considers that a third stage of the proletarian ideology arises: First, as marxism-leninism, Mao Zedong thought; then marxism-leninism-Mao Zedong thought; and later, it is defined as maoism, understanding its universal validity; and in this way reaching marxism-leninism-maoism, mainly maoism, as the current expression of marxism.


1. Post-war Peruvian society and within it the political struggle, the so-called National-Democratic Frontiii, the action of the APRAiv, Odría‘sv State coup and the struggle against his eight-year rule, the contention between APRA‘s followers and communists; and particularly the development of bureaucratic capitalism in the 1960s and part of the 1970s and the sharp class struggle that accompanied it; «Velascoism»vi and its so-called revolution, the contention and collusion between the comprador bourgeoisie and the bureaucratic bourgeoisie (factions of the big bourgeoisie), and with opportunism and mainly revisionism as supporters.

2. The class struggle in the peasant movement.

3. The process of the working-class movement.

4. The intellectual movement.

5. The armed struggle in the country, especially by the Movement of the Revolutionary Leftvii and the National Liberation Armyviii in 1965, as well as their antecedents in Blancoix, Vallejosx and Heraudxi.

6. The problem of the Party: How a Party founded on a clear marxist-leninist basis degenerated into a revisionist party, the necessity to retake Mariátegui‘s path, develop it, and to refound the Party, the Communist Party of Peru that Mariátegui himself founded in 1928, and how through this refounding a marxist-leninist-maoist Party was built.

Here it is fundamental how Gonzalo thought profoundly understood Peruvian society, and focusing on the crucial problem of bureaucratic capitalism, saw the necessity to refound the Party and to conquer power and defend it with people‘s war.


Without marxism-leninism-maoism, Gonzalo thought cannot be conceived, because the latter is the creative application of the former to our reality. The key question on this point lies in the understanding of the historical process of the development of the proletarian ideology, of its three stages shaped into marxism-leninism-maoism and with maoism as main; and, essentially, it is the application of marxism-leninism-maoism as a universal truth to the concrete conditions of the Peruvian revolution; hence Gonzalo thought is specifically main for the Communist Party of Peru and the revolution it directs.

The guiding thought, having reached a qualitative leap of decisive importance for the Party and the revolution, has evolved into Gonzalo thought, thus stamping a milestone in the Party‘s life.



How it understands and applies the three integral parts of marxism-leninism-maoism, mainly maoism; emphasizing the importance that marxism gives to philosophy, the necessity of forming ourselves within it, and especially its application of the law of contradiction in the study of every problem, always aiming at defining the main aspect and the process of things; in political economy, the concern about the relations of exploitation, and most especially about bureaucratic capitalism, orienting itself towards the ripening of the revolution and the repercussion of the people‘s war on the base, as well as paying attention to the economic relations of imperialism, looking for their political consequences; in scientific socialism it centers on the people‘s war and its concretization in the country, since it always has the problem of power in mind and, particularly, its formation and development as a new State.


The most substantive and developed part of Gonzalo thought is found in the Party‘s general political line; this thought directly sustains, therefore, the line and its five elements, with the point of departure of this being how it understands and maintains the course of the Programme.


In Gonzalo thought we must highlight the notable fulfillment of the demands stated by Chairman Mao: theoretical solidity, an understanding of history and a good, practical handling of politics.


What is fundamental in Gonzalo thought is the question of power; concretely, the conquest of political power in Peru, wholly and completely throughout the country, as a consequential application of the universal truth of marxism-leninism-maoism to our revolution. But being a communist thought, it understands the conquest of political power in Peru as a part of the conquest of power for the proletariat on a world level; and that the conquest of power in the country, shaping itself today in the people‘s committees, base areas and the People‘s Republic of New Democracy in formation within the perspective of establishing the People‘s Republic of Peru, serves to establish the dictatorship of the proletariat in our country, because without it, it is impossible to march towards communism. And all of this firmly and decisively serving to establish people‘s republics and mainly the dictatorship of the proletariat throughout the whole world, under the directorship of Communist Parties, with revolutionary armies of a new type, through people‘s war and the development of cultural revolutions, so that communism may illuminate all of the Earth.


It is through a persistent, firm, and wise two-line struggle, defending the proletarian line and defeating the opposing lines that Gonzalo thought has been forged. Among the most outstanding struggles that deserve to be emphasized are those waged against modern revisionism, represented here by Del Pradoxii and his henchmen; those against the Right-liquidationism of Paredesxiii and his gang; those against «Left»-liquidationism headed by the one who was called Sergioxiv and his self-proclaimed «bolsheviks»; and against the Right-opportunist linexv that opposed the initiation of the armed struggle. Without struggle, Gonzalo thought could not have been developed; and its remarkable handling of the two-line struggle within the Party is a fundamental question which we must study and learn.

To study and mainly to apply Gonzalo thought is decisive in order to better serve the Party, the development of the people‘s war and the proletarian world revolution. Likewise, to learn from Chairman Gonzalo is decisive in order to wholeheartedly serve the people.

i José Carlos Mariátegui (1894-1930) was a Peruvian communist leader who founded the Communist Party of Peru on 07.10.1928. He thoroughly analyzed Peruvian and Latin American society, founded the General Confederation of Trade Unions of Peru and is considered to have been one of the greatest marxist theoreticians in history.

ii The Great Plan to Develop Base Areas was established as a pilot plan by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Peru in December 1986. It lasted until May 1989 and its first part covered three campaigns: the Pilot Plan to Develop Bases, the 2nd Campaign to Brilliantly Fulfill It and Establish a Historic Milestone, and the 3rd Campaign to Consolidate and Develop the Great Completion; then followed the the second part of the pilot plan, which was called the Great Completion of the Pilot Plan. The pilot plan contained 63,052 military actions. This entire three-year pilot plan served to establish the Great Plan to Develop Base Areas to Serve the Conquest of Power, which lasted from August 1989 to August 1992.

iii The National Democratic Front was a supposed electoral alliance formed by several political parties in Peru in 1960, which ran for the elections in 1962. It was later dissolved.

iv The American People‘s Revolutionary Alliance is a social-democratic party in Peru. It was originally founded by Víctor Raúl Haya de la Torre in 1924, based on the idea of a class front, similar to the Guomindang in China. It was fought by J. C. Mariátegui who established the need for an independent proletarian political party in Peru. Later, the APRA developed as a social-fascist party. Under the leadership of Alan García Pérez, President of Peru from 1985 to 1990 and again from 2006 to 2011, it was responsible for the massacres against the prisoners of war and political prisoners in the Peruvian concentration camps, which took place in 1985 and 1986.

v Manuel Odría (1896-1974) was the fascist military dictator of Peru from 1948 to 1956. Under his rule, opposition parties to the regime were banned and repression of mass movements reached a high point.

vi Juan Velasco (1910-77) was the fascist military dictator of Peru from 1968 to 1975. Under his rule, bureaucratic-comprador capitalism was strengthened through a series of reforms which evolved the semi-feudal Peruvian agriculture into a corporative system of peasant «cooperatives» under State control. Velasco portrayed himself as a «socialist» and a «revolutionary» and was falsely viewed as a «national-bourgeois» leader by the Peruvian revisionists.

vii The Movement of the Revolutionary Left was a focus-theorist group inspired by the Cuban revolution, which carried out a failed guerrilla warfare campaign in Peru in 1965. In 1982, its remnants merged with the Revolutionary Socialist Party (Marxist-Leninist) to found the Túpac Amaru Revolutionary Movement.

viii The National Liberation Army was a focus-theorist group of dubious «revolutionary» character, which carried out a failed guerrilla warfare campaign in Peru in 1965.

ix Hugo Blanco (1934-) is a Peruvian Trotskyite politician who led a peasant uprising from 1961 to 1963 in Cuzco.

x Francisco Vallejos was a sub-officer in the Republican Guard of Peru, who led a failed guerrilla campaign in Jauja in 1962.

xi Javier Heraud (1942-63) was a Peruvian poet and founder of the National Liberation Army. He and a small armed group entered Peru in 1963 with the intention of launching guerrilla warfare, but they were crushed.

xii Jorge del Prado (1910-99) was a Peruvian Khrushchevite revisionist who was expelled from the Communist Party of Peru in the 1960s. He then formed the splitter group «Peruvian Communist Party», which published the newspaper Unity.

xiii Saturnino Paredes (1921-96) was a Peruvian Dengite revisionist who was expelled from the Communist Party of Peru in the 1970s. He then formed the splitter group «Communist Party of Peru, Red Fatherland».

xiv Sergio was the leader of the «Bolshevik Group», a secret faction in the Communist Party of Peru. This group developed a «Left»-liquidationist line which isolated the Party from the masses by claiming that it was not possible to carry out mass work under fascism. They left the Party in 1975.

xv The 1st Right-opportunist line was opposed to the initiation of the people‘s war in Peru. It was fought by Comrade Gonzalo at the Enlarged 9th Plenary Session of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Peru in June 1979. The 1st Right-opportunist line held that there was no revolutionary situation in Peru and that the conditions for initiating the armed struggle therefore did not exist. The leaders of this line were expelled from the Party.