Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira
Second American Edition of
"Revolution and Counter-Revolution"
Most of Revolution and Counter-revolution was written twenty years ago in 1959. Later, in 1976, the Third Part was written especially for the third Italian edition of the book. At that time, I asked myself if there was anything in this study that should be changed. After a serious examination, I reached the conclusion that there was not. An application of the essay to the panorama of 1976 would suffice; this application resulted in the new part that has been added to the work. Now, in making this preface, I must say that it is not necessary to add or to change anything at all.
Nevertheless, so many things have changed during these last twenty years! Especially in regard to the communist danger, which constitutes the most pressing problem analyzed in Revolution and Counter-revolution, how many legitimate hopes of active anti-communists have been frustrated, how many illusions have been swept away with the wind!
Among these hopes that time has proven to have been unjustified was one according to which the Soviet monster would draw back inside Russian borders with the liberation of the glorious captive nations and the so much desired reunification of Germany! However, the Iron Curtain continues to divide Europe in two.
That, in itself, is already terrible. Even more terrible is the fact that the Western world seems to have become accustomed to this unjust and cruel amputation. In 1975, the Helsinki Treaty consecrated the division of Europe into two blocs, recognizing the Soviet conquests of World War II.
Nevertheless, Providence had the right to expect the West to mobilize its immense cultural, technical, and economic superiority in order to oblige Communism to carry out successive withdrawals that could even lead to the liberation of the Russian people. However, no decisive aid ever came from Western nations to free the Russian people from the prison-state that extends from the Iron Curtain to the vast regions of Asia.
One day History will judge this inertia with severity and question the Western peoples for not having made use of every means to relieve their oppressed brothers.
I would like to stress, moreover, that the expression "inertia" does not sum up the whole reality.
The censurable capitulation at Yalta and the purely verbal — and only limitedly efficacious — quarrel of the cold war has indeed been succeeded by a no less censurable inertia. And this inertia is all the more censurable because of its being negligent and good-humored. It influenced the West during the period called the "peaceful coexistence." Later, however, came something even more grave: the period of "detente" in which the United States and the richest nations of the West obstinately sent to Russia capital, plants, know-how, technicians, and so on.
While the Russian giant fed himself on the riches of the West, he did everything possible to prepare the destruction of the latter. Military superiority, which the West should have capitalized on during the post-war period in order to oblige Russia to refrain from its arms race and to renounce its world-wide ideological and political imperialism, has — so to speak — stopped its progress and begun to wither. While this deterioration was occurring, Russia extended its conquests to the high point at which they are found today. As the Kremlin leaders sat at the negotiating table in the seemingly pacifistic atmosphere of "detente," Russia successively conquered Ethiopia (1974), Cambodia, Vietnam, Mozambique, Angola (all in 1975), and more recently Afghanistan (1978).
Each successful conquest encourages other conquests, and it does so with redoubled emphasis. This is what the history of all imperialism teaches.
Everyone knows that today Soviet imperialism is more enterprising than ever.
How great has been its development during the time span stretching from the date of the publication of the first Brazilian edition of Revolution and Counter-revolution until today!
And how much more it threatens to grow!
In the face of this, a question will certainly arise in the reader. Why read this book which was written with the desire of deepening as much as possible the study of the remote and recent origins of Communism since the fifteenth century and for the purpose of facilitating the study of its most characteristic methods of ideological infiltration? I am convinced that it is worthwhile, and very much so. I could demonstrate it. But since the certainty of this utility stems from the reading of each page of the book, it would be useless to do it here.
* * *
It is in the nature of pragmatism to be impressed much more by the language of facts than by that of doctrine.
After the launching of Revolution and Counter-revolution in 1959, I founded in 1960 with a group of friends — some of whom were very young at the time — the Brazilian Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property.
Its objective was to spread itself among Brazilian youths in order to organize them for the Counter-revolution.
Its method consisted in attracting and forming youths so that they could help the counter-revolutionary promotion of the Society through newspapers, books, radio, and television and help to sell materials edited by the Society in public campaigns in the streets.
This ideal immediately spread throughout South America, attracting the enthusiasm of youths in Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, and Bolivia. Inspired by the principles of Revolution and Counter-revolution, they formed similar autonomous societies, which are very active and successful in their respective countries.
Naturally, the combativity of the TFP's immediately directed itself against organized and declared Communism. Nevertheless, the TFP's foresaw that the guerillas spread by Cuba in South America would soon miserably disappear for lack of logistical support from the rural populations, as has actually happened. They also foresaw that Communism was far from being able to reach power in any government through a majority in the polls, a prevision that was entirely and meticulously confirmed by the facts. Accordingly, the TFP's understood that the red danger would seek to advance by another path and that it was necessary to block that path. Let me explain myself.
Within the profoundly traditional and Catholic population of our continent, Communism could not limit itself to making its propaganda openly. If it were to have done so, it would have encountered a reaction that would have closed many doors to the Communists. Therefore, their propaganda had to advance mainly in a veiled fashion by developing a crypto-communist brand of socialism in the midst of various non-communist groups and social classes. From there, they sought to make the public familiar with leftist ideas and to make it less fearful of the principles of the red sect. Only through this achievement could open and declared Communism be given the possibility of existing.
The mentors of the communist Revolution expected this crypto-communism and the crowds of "useful innocents" supporting it to gradually modify pari passu the structure of society and of economy through socializing reforms in such a way as increasingly to transform present-day society, which is based on private property, into a collectivistic society.
The TFP's set out to denounce this whole game and thus block the way to such an insidious form of communist advance.
* * *
If it is frequently difficult to make judicious and practical plans; it is even more difficult to carry them out.
And, indeed, a special difficulty presented itself in respect to the plan of anti-communist action adopted by the TFP's. This difficulty was that crypto-communism succeeded in dangerously infiltrating an institution of primordial importance in the spiritual and cultural formation of Brazil and the whole of South America — the Roman Catholic Church. In addition the Roman Catholic Church. In addition to that, it worked its way into the bosom of an important nation in this part of the world — Chile.
Crypto-communist infiltration into the Catholic Church in Brazil and South America and the spreading in its bosom of clearly leftist doctrines have become so great that the TFP's have had to acknowledge among their greatest adversaries certain members of the Catholic hierarchy, several of them very high-ranking...
It is proper at this moment to say a word about the advance of Communism in Chile. As we shall see, there has been a great relationship between the activities of the TFP in Brazil and of the sister TFP's that spread throughout the continent.
Christian Democracy in Chile is considerably more similar to its Italian counterpart than to the Christian Democrats in Germany. The Chilean Christian Democratic Party, at the time that Eduardo Frei was President of the Republic (1964-1970), began certain maneuvers continually supported by a clergy impregnated with an active leftism. In time, the government of Frei created all of the conditions necessary for the minority Socialist Party, allied with the radicals and the communists and supported by dissident far-leftist Christian Democrats, to bring Marxist Salvador Allende to power (1970-1973). This victory of the crypto-communist tactic was precisely what the TFP's are specialized in combating.
In summation, we can say that if it were not for the existence of the TFP's, perhaps the tactic of crypto-communism would have already subjugated the whole of South America for Moscow. And the South Atlantic, where the Communists have already made so many advances in Africa, would now be a communist lake. Such a condition would produce international consequences that are easy to evaluate.
All of this shows very well the fecundity of the action born of this book, an action continuously inspired by it and aimed at the realization of the goals that it indicates.
Let no one think that the success of the anti-communist tactic of the TFP's can be explained by the mere peculiarities of the South American ambience. Such a view is not feasible, because other sister but autonomous TFP's have been born with remarkable vigor in the United States, Canada, Spain, and France. And in Rome, Italy, there is an important bureau of information that helps to spread the ideals of the TFP's.
* * *
Saint Thomas — the Gospel tells us — did not believe as long as he had not seen. The pragmatic ones, to whom only palpable arguments are valid, are like him. Accordingly, the very generality of the facts that I have just expounded may leave them skeptical. Therefore, I have the pleasure of offering them, as an example, an analytical description of the expansion and the success of the Brazilian TFP. I will gladly send it to readers who are interested (request from the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family, and Property).
The book Revolution and Counter-revolution, which has inspired the TFP's in South America, has also attracted the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family, and Property.
This makes me rejoice upon seeing the works that they accomplish and promise to carry out in their great country, which has a truly momentous influence among the nations of this continent and the world.
São Paulo, October 1978
Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira