Background on Nepal

Maoist insurgents control 80% of the countryside and have set up working, alternative governments. Nepal’s seven main parliamentary parties are allied against the King, but do not support the Maoists, although all have joined in a united front against the King.

They did not do this out of ideological unity. The reason that the parliamentary parties have come out in opposition to the monarchy and formed a tactical alliance with the communist insurgents is the strength of the insurgency itself.

Once the [Maoist] rebellion began, the country’s police unleashed a wave of violence and terror against the rural population. Peasants in conflict areas were deemed “Maoist supporters” and often brutally tortured and killed. With the aid of U.S. military “advisors” and millions of dollars, the Royal Nepalese Army quickly joined the battle, and the repression increased exponentially. The army has been cited as one of the worst human rights abusers in the world. (Nepal: Security Forces ‘Disappear’ Hundreds of Civilians, Human Rights Watch, May 1, 2005)

Despite these significant obstacles, the insurgents have gained much ground throughout Nepal. They currently control about 80 percent of Nepal’s countryside, with growing influence in the cities among the urban workers.

They operate an alternative governmentâ┚¬â€what they call the People’s Republic of Nepalâ┚¬â€in the parts of the country they control. These liberated areas consist of nine national and territorial autonomous regions. In these areas, the CPN(M) is building people’s committees and mass organizations and carrying out sweeping democratic reforms. The presence of the king’s government is “now limited to the capital, district headquarters and highways,” according to CPN(M) politburo member Pavrati.

In addition, there is a brutal, medieval caste system in Nepal in which Dalits are barely considered human and have no rights. Discrimination against women is equally entrenched, and slavery still exists.

These unbearable living conditions have made the armed uprising popular especially among the peasants and young people.

Where is the U.S.? Supporting the King, of course.

U.S. aid is quietly funneled to Nepal’s king through third-country conduits. The United States also conducts joint exercises with the murderous army and supplies it with thousands of M-16 rifles, communication and night vision equipment, and training in counterinsurgency.

India and China also don’t want the King to fall. Will there be foreign intervention when he does? And then too will come the struggle for power between the Maoists who want socialism and the parliamentary parties who want some, but not major, changes. However, it’s clear who the peasants support, and that’s the Maoists.