Are there any countries left in the world that claim to be communists nations? And if there are any, how many of them are earnestly trying to make the communist system work?

I guess Cuba is a communist nation.


Obvious candidates include North Korea, Vietnam, PR China, or the unrecognised country of Transnistria (which even uses the hammer-and-sickle emblem on its flag and coats of arms), maybe Venezuela. At the end of the day, however, it depends on what you mean by “claim to be communists nations”. If you include countries which make references to Socialist ideas in their constitutions or national symbols, then there will be many more than these and include, for instance, Italy. The issue is complicated further by the fact that many countries modified ideologies which are broadly Socialist in nature by adding a flavour of locally developed concepts; this is, e.g., true for Venezuela.

Whether the commitment to Communism/Socialism has an impact on political reality, or rather mere lip service, is, of course, a totally different question.

Laos also calls itself communist. I don’t know how well they stick to it, though.

Did Albania kick it in? I remember they used to be Maoist.

There are people of people who call themselves communists in the sense that they favor communism but usually, countries say they’re socialist since the communist stage is supposed to be stateless.

The USSR itself was full of communists but never pretended to have a communist system; they didn’t call themselves the USCR.

Socialism and Communism are not synonyms.

Socialism is government ownership. All countries are to some degree socialistic, even the most die-hard free market ones: all possess government-owned real estate (e.g.roads and parks), government-owned education systems (though private schools may also exist), government-owned security organizations (e.g. police and armed forces, though private security may also exist). The point at which a system may be characterized as “Socialist” lies somewhere near the point where private investment ceases to exist. Someone else will have to say if such a country has ever existed.

Communism is considered a scientific, deterministic theory of history where the next to last stage is a Socialism in which all of nearly all land and modes of production are state-owned. This socialist stage is supposed to transit into a final stage of blissful anarchism, where all government withers away.

The CIA World Factbook says Albania is a parliamentary democracy.

I don’t consider North Korea to be communist they moved off that line far too long ago they are more like a military monarchy. I consider myself to be a Revolutionary Socialist/Communist (Marxism-Leninism), the only countries I see as being communist would be Cuba, Laos, Vietnam, and the People’s Republic of China. You must also remember that not all communists are the same for example you can not use Stalin as a symbol that all communist aspire to.

It’s nice to see somebody capable of making the distinction, and pointing out that (nearly*) everybody is socialist to some degree.

*Some Libertarians claim they want all the stuff you mention privatized. :dubious:

Vientiane recently started a stock exchange, the Lao Securities Exchange. (Vietnam has two, in Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi.)

People’s Republic of China is nominally Communist, though it embraces many aspects of capitalism. Most of the adults I know here are party members, and there is a strange disconnect between supply, demand and price. This is great if you need food or penicillin, not so great if you want a new MacBook or an iWatch.

North Korea is no longer communist. Their official name for their philosophy is Juche. The terminology was changed in 2009, although I believe they still use the term “socialist.”

"usually translated as “self-reliance” ". Quite ironic since they can’t feed themselves and are probably about to go into sabre rattling mode once again to get more ‘tributes’ to dear leader in the form of grain.

And the consequences of your distinction for the purposes of the present thread are…?

Isn’t Nepal now governed by a Maoist regime?


Not exactly. From Wikipedia:

"The Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) won the largest number of seats in the Constituent Assembly election held on April 10, 2008, and formed a coalition government which included most of the parties in the CA. Although acts of violence occurred during the pre-electoral period, election observers noted that the elections themselves were markedly peaceful and ‘well-carried out’.

"The newly elected Assembly met in Kathmandu on May 28, 2008, and, after a polling of 564 constituent Assembly members, 560 voted to form a new government, with the monarchist Rastriya Prajatantra Party, which had four members in the assembly, registering a dissenting note. At that point, it was declared that Nepal had become a secular and inclusive democratic republic, with the government announcing a three-day public holiday from May 28–30. The king was thereafter given 15 days to vacate Narayanhity Palace so it could reopen as a public museum.

"Nonetheless, political tensions and consequent power-sharing battles have continued in Nepal. In May 2009, the Maoist-led government was toppled and another coalition government with all major political parties barring the Maoists was formed. Madhav Kumar Nepal of the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist–Leninist) was made the Prime Minister of the coalition government. In February 2011 the Madhav Kumar Nepal Government was toppled and Jhala Nath Khanal of the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist–Leninist) was made the Prime Minister. In August 2011 the Jhala Nath Khanal Government was toppled and Baburam Bhattarai of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) was made the Prime Minister.

“The political parties were unable to draft a constitution in the stipulated time. This led to dissolution of the Constituent Assembly to pave way for new elections to strive for a new political mandate. In opposition to the theory of separation of powers, then Chief Justice Khila Raj Regmi was made the chairman of the caretaker government. Under Regmi, the nation saw peaceful elections for the constituent assembly. The major forces in the earlier constituent assembly (namely CPN Maoists and Madhesi parties) dropped to distant 3rd and even below.

Venezuela considers themselves a socialist state, but Chavez at various points called himself a communist and a Trotskyist. Belarus doesn’t call themselves communist, but they’re the closest thing to a remnant of the former Soviet Union on offer today, with a largely state-run economy.

At least two replies have exhibited ignorance of the fact that the distinction exists, and
it is not “my” distinction, it is Political Science 101.

I would say a communist state is one whose political philosophy is Marxist: that there is a natural evolution in which capitalism supplants feudalism, followed by a socialist dictatorship of the proletariat supplanting capitalism, followed by a gradual withering of the state until communism is finally achieved. As far as I know, all communist states got to the point where socialism supplanted capitalism (or at least that’s what they say they achieved), and none of them got to the point of communism itself.

There isn’t one single form of socialism. Sweden has had its own form of socialism quite different from the Marxist type, one difference being that Sweden never had nor wanted a dictatorship of any sort, another being that Sweden didn’t have the goal of eliminating private property.

I agree with Nelson Pike that all countries are to some degree socialistic. The U.S. is supposed to be the most capitalist country in the world, but we have things like the Bureau of Land Management, national forests, government-run education systems, government-owned parks. . . Whether a country is socialist isn’t a yes/no question, it’s a “how much” question.