Communist Party, USA: Resolution on Puerto Rico

BY: 28th National Convention| July 20, 2005

Whereas, the United States government took over the island nation of Puerto Rico through a war of imperialist conquest in 1898 and since then has been a colony of the U.S.; and,

Whereas, while the details of how the U.S. dominates Puerto Rico has and may change including what it is called, i.e., protectorate, commonwealth, or state, the essence is the essence is the same, i.e., colonialism; and,

Whereas, most decisions dealing with Puerto Rico are made by the U.S. political establishment and not Puerto Ricans; and,

Whereas, Puerto Rican communists and Marxists, in analyzing the situation of the Puerto Rican nation, have concluded that a free and independent Puerto Rico is indispensable to the full and democratic development of the Puerto Rican nation; and,

Whereas, Puerto Rico, no matter what political tendency occupies the political centers of colonial administration, manifests its own nationality through its language, culture, and independent forms such as having its own forms for participation in sports, cultural, economic, among others, independent of the U.S., including the sending of its own representation to activities in Latin American such as state funerals, presidential inaugurations, etc.; and,

Whereas, in the last decade Puerto Ricans have affirmed through struggle their national identity as distinct from the U.S., examples of this being the March for the Nation of 75,000 after the annexationist governor declared that Puerto Rico is but an ethnic group within the American nation; the demonstration of 50,000 against making English a co-equal language with Spanish; the fight against the privatization of the Puerto Rico Telephone Company with the main slogans being Puerto Rico is not for sale and Defend our national patrimony; the fight of Puerto Ricans of all political tendencies, except for the right-wing extremist of the annexationist groupings, for the release of pro-independence Puerto Rican political prisoners ; and the successful fight to oust the U.S. Navy from Vieques; and,

Whereas, the nation of Puerto Rico is forced to join in U.S. imperialist wars no matter what the feeling of its government or people; and,

Whereas, progressive provisions that Puerto Ricans have put into their colonial Constitution such as the prohibition of wiretaps, no death penalty, the right not to be discriminated against which includes prohibition against discrimination based on social class or poverty, are constantly violated because of U.S. jurisdiction over the island nation; and,

Whereas, the Puerto Rican nation cannot progress politically or economically, much less towards a higher form of social organization, i.e., socialism, while it is controlled by US imperialism; and,

Whereas, the overwhelming majority of Latin American countries have declared their solidarity with the independence and self-determination of Puerto Rico as a Latin American nation; the UN Decolonization Committee reaffirms the inalienable right of the Puerto Rican people to self-determination and independence according to resolution 1514 (XV); political organizations on the left from the Socialist International to Communist parties have and continue to support independence for Puerto Rico; and the socialist and non-aligned countries of the world have supported and continue to support the right to independence and self-determination;

Therefore be it resolved, that the Communist Party of the USA (CPUSA) continues its support for independence of Puerto Rico and the transfer of all sovereign powers to Puerto Rico and will make known its support by engaging in and organizing activities in support of this question, including speaking to this question in its international work as well as peace and solidarity activities; and,

Be it further resolved, that the CPUSA will conduct educational work among its members, coalition partners, the working class and the people in general with the aim of explaining the importance of this question and organizing support for Puerto Rican independence.

Adopted by the 28th National Convention of the Communist Party, USA, Chicago, IL; July 1-3, 2005.


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