That’s because the Revolution wasn’t/iisn’t over. The Oppressive powers that Castro, Mugabe, and Kim Il Sung fought are not only still standing, they are still on the offensive against these Revolutions.
It’s not an excuse, but it’s the reason. One of the Revolutions where the Revolutionaries stepped down prematurely was the Haitian Revolution; and those who inherited the State from the Revolutionary forces turned it right over to the Reactionary Powers.
Now, if you follow my blog you know I rail against the plague of “Leader for Life” in African nations and Black Organizations. Two Wrongs don’t make a right. It’s not right for Revolutionary Leaders to surrender power of the State to non-Revolutionary forces prematurely, it’s also not right for individuals to hold power over a Revolutionary movements or States for life either.
The ultimate failing of these Leaders, all of whom I respect greatly, is not that they remained Leaders for Life (even though I oppose that shit), or that they failed to turn the State over to Statesmen and Bureaucrats (which should only happen when the Revolution is entrenched and secure); their ultimate failing was they simply stopped being Revolutionary and settled for a post-Revolution/pre-Full Victory Status Quo that ultimately devolved and became Reactionary.
Revolutions require Revolution. If you stop making Revolution then you are no longer have a Revolutionary. So, the moment Mugabe, Sung, and Castro decided to stop advancing their struggles they began regressing as individuals and so did the movements they lead.
Mugabe should have advanced his struggle beyond Zimbabwe, the African Revolution is continental, if it’s allowed to be limited to one region or State then it will atrophy and die a slow death. Sung should have pushed beyond North and South Korea, all of Asia should have been Revolutionized. Same goes for Castro, he should have incorporated and expanded to all of the Caribbean, Central, and South America. Che Guevara told him this, but he didn’t listen, Castro was more interested in Governing a Socialist Cuba than Liberation the world from Western Imperialism and Capitalism (but he didn’t understand that one couldn’t happen fully without the other).
Look at the Oppressors, they are Global, the Western Powers were not content with 13 Colonizes, or a few States they took the entire Continent, they took the entire world. When you are dealing with Oppressive, Imperialist, and Colonizing forces this aggressive you need a Continental or Global Revolution to unseat them.
Also, these leaders failed to make the Revolution Multigenerational. Castro seems to be trying, Mugabe, is also trying but less so, Sung just embraced a cult of personality and a Reactionary Statu Quo. I don’t blame these men, this is just a sober critique, there are many layers I just can’t get into because it would take up so much space. I’m sure you don’t expect me to qrite a book here…right?
Just understand that all of these Great Men were/are fighting an oppressor who’s willing to kill billions, who’s willing to destroy entire ecosystems to advance their Imperialist agendas, are we willing to make those same sacrifices for freedom, or do we want the slow death of submission? That’s kinda of a trick question, cuz the System that Oppresses us is Omnicidal whether we fight it or not; but these three men responded to this: “..yes & no,” at various times of their struggles.
I think they should have allowed for stable and rational transference of Power and erected and sustained a Fully Revolutionary State, and Revolutionized all elements of Governance, Culture, and Infrastructure, while prioritizing linkages and cooperation with all other Revolutionary Forces around the globe until Omnicidal Capitalism and Western Imperialism were fully defeated.
Really good question about an under addressed issue. Thanks for asking and I hope I was able to offer some clarity.
I actually wrote a poem about this called “A Revolution Deferred,” about what happens when a Revolution fails to continue its advance. If I find it I’ll post it.