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Full text of "Investigation of un-American propaganda activities in the United States. Hearings before a Special Committee on Un-American Activities, House of Representatives, Seventy-fifth Congress, third session-Seventy-eighth Congress, second session, on H. Res. 282, to investigate (l) the extent, character, and objects of un-American propaganda activities in the United States, (2) the diffusion within the United States of subversive and un-American propaganda that is instigated from foreign countries or of a domestic origin and attacks the principle of the form of government as guaranteed by our Constitution, and (3) all other questions in relation thereto that would aid Congress in any necessary remedial legislation"

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Stat. Hall ( J-qe Qmlyt 







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FN 978 : <.2?.40: 300 









H. Res. 282 










Printed for the use of the Special Committee on Un-American Activities 









H. Res. 282 








Printed for the use of the Special Committee on Un-American Activities 

> .1 1J« . 

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*J1931 WASHINGTON : 1940 



FEB 4 1344 : 



MARTIN DIES, Texas, Chairman 

JOHN J. DEMPSEY, New Mexico NOAH M. MASON, Illinois 


JERRY VOORHIS, California 

JOSEPH E. CASEY, Massachusetts 

Robert E. Stripling, Secretary 
J. B. Matthews, Director of Research 


* • « V  













The Manifesto of the Communist Partv, bv Karl Marx and 
Friedrich Engels "^ "_ 

A discussion of the Communist manifesto, bv Otto Kuusinen, 
a m.ember of the secretariat of the Communist Inter- 
national, in which the manifesto is described as "the 
great charter of the international Communist movement" 

A continuation of exhibit No. 2 

Testimony of William Z. Foster, before the" Spec iarCo'm-" 
mittee on Un-American Activities, in which he, as chair- 
man of the Communist Partv of the United States, de- 
clared his acceptance of "The Program of the Communist 

The text of the "Program of the Communist international" 
together with its Constitution" 

The text of a pamphlet entitled "Lenin— the Great Strategist 
of the Class War," by A. Lozovsky, formerlv head of the 
Red International of Labor Unions, in which,' among other 
things, Lozovsky described Lenin as "the father of the 
Communist International" 

The text of a pamphlet entitled "Lenin on the " Historic 
Significance of the Third International" 

The text of "A Letter to American Workers," bv V. I. Leniii 

Excerpts from a book entitled "Stalin," bv Boris Souvarine, 
former member of the executive committee of the Com- 
munist International 

Excerpts from a pamphlet entitled "Questions arid Answers 
to American Trade Unionists— Stalin's Interview with 
tlie First American Trade Union Delegation to Soviet 
Russia," in which Stalin made statements on the control 
of the Russian Government by the Communist Party of 
the Soviet Union and on the question of monev sent to 
the American Communist Partv bv the Communist 
International and by the Communist Partv of the Soviet 
Union "__ 

Excerpts from a book entitled "Mv Life" As" a" Rebel/' "by 
Angelica Balabanoff, first secretarv of the Communist 

Theses and statutes of tlie "fhird (Communist)" Int"e"rn"at[onal" " 
adopted by the Second Congress, Julv 17 to Aug. 7, 1920 

Excerpts from a book entitled "Lenin on Organization," in 
which the conspiratorial character of a communist party 
IS repeatedly emphasized ' 

Program of the World Revolution, lay X. B u char iti," former- 
leader of the Communist International and of the Com- 
munist Party of the Soviet Union 

Manifesto of the Second Congress of the third (Communist) 
International, 1920, entitled "The Capitalist World and 
the Communist International" 

The constitution and program of the Communist Part"v of 
America, adopted in 1921, bv the joint unity convention 
of the Comnuinist Party and the United Communist 
Party of America — predecessors of the present Communist 
Party of the United States of America 

Program and constitution of the Workers Partv of America, 
adopted at the National Convention of the Party, Dec. 
24-26, 1921 — one of the earlv names of the present Com- 
munist Party of the United States of America 





























Excerpts from a book entitled "Theses and Resolutions," 
adopted at the Third World Congress of the Communist 
International, held in Moscow from June 22 to July 12, 

Excerpts from a book entitled "The Fourth Congress of the 
Communist International," held in Moscow from Nov. 7 
to Dec. 3, 1922 

Excerpts from a booklet entitled "Resolutions and Theses of 
the Fourth Congress of the Communist International, 
held in Moscow Nov. 7 to Dec. 3, 1922" 

The text of a pamphlet entitled "The Party Organization," 
by Jay Lovestone and C. E. Ruthenberg, and containing 
a letter from the Communist International to the Workers 
(Communist) Party of America, and also the Constitution 
of the Workers (Communist) Party of America — pub- 
lished in 1925 

The text of the program of the Workers (Communist) Party 
of America, published under the title "Our Immediate 
Work" in 1924 

The text of a pamphlet entitled "The Second Year of the 
Workers Party of America — Theses. Program. Resolu- 
tions," 1924 

Statement in the first issue of the Daily Worker, declaring 
its revolutionary character and also its connection with 
the Communist International, 1924 

Statement by C. E. Ruthenberg, executive secretary of the 
Workers Party, calling upon the party to demonstrate its 
"loyalty and support to the Communist International". 

Statement from the Worker, Apr. 28, 1923, in an editorial 
stating that the following May Day would be remembered 
as the time when the Workers Party appeared in the 
world arena of the class struggle "as the American Section 
of the Communist International" 

Text of a cablegram from Zinoviev, head of the Communist 
International, to C. E. Ruthenberg, executive secretary 
of the Workers Party of America, on the establishment of 
the Daily W^orker, Sept. 8, 1923 

Statement by C. E. Ruthenberg, executive secretary of the 
Workers Party of America, calling for the postponement 
of the convention of the technical aid "pending the final 
decision of the Communist International," Mar. 24, 1923 

Statement from the Worker, giving the Communist position 
on the inevitability of a "resort to force," Apr. 7, 1923__ 

Statement from the Worker, giving the Communist position 
on the inevitability of force in tTie class struggle 

Excerpts from a booklet entitled "Fifth Congress of the 
Commimist International, Abridged Report of Meetings 
held at Moscow, June 17 to July 8, 1924" 

Excerpts from a book entitled "Workers (Communist) 
Partv of America, the Fourth National Convention," 
Aug.' 21-30, 1925 

Excerpts from a book entitled "The Communist Inter- 
national, Between the Fifth and Sixth World Con- 
gresses— 1924-28" 

Statement from the Worker, dealing with the question of 
individual acts of terrorism, 1922 

Statement from the theses of the enlarged committee of 
the Communist International, dealing with the Com- 
munists' use of armed force, 1922 

Statement by C. E. Ruthenberg in the Worker, declaring 
that "without the Russian Revolution there would have 
been no Communist movement in the United States." 1922. 




37 Excerpt from the manifesto of the Communist Party of 
America, declaring that capitahsm cannot be abolished 
without the use of force, 1922 

38 Statement by J. Louis Engdahl in the Worker, Nov. 4, 1922, 
declaring for the acceptance of the leadership of the Com- 
mun ist International 

39 Statement from the Worker, Dec. 2, 1922, on the inspiration 
and leadership of the Communist International 

40 Text of a cablegram from Zinoviev, head of the Communist 
International, to C. E. Ruthenberg, executive secretary 
of the Workers Partv of America, Dec. 16, 1922 

41 An article by H. M. Wicks in the Worker, Jan. 13, 1923, 
calling for the "wresting" of the Government from the 
hands of the Communists' enemies and for the establish- 
ment of a Soviet Government 

42 Statement by the Central Executive Committee of the 
United States Communist Party, appearing in the Worker, 
Mar. 3, 1923, and declaring that the Central Executive 
Committee "will carry out the decisions of the Communist 
International not only out of discipline but because of full 
conviction of their correctness" 

43 Excerpt from a statement of the Executive Committee of the 
Communist International on the "American Question," 
Feb. 24, 1923, published in the Worker 

44 An article on The Soviet Government and the Third 
International, bv H. M. Wicks, published in the Worker, 
June 2, 1923 _ _ _' 

45 A statement on The Communist International, the Eman- 
cipator of the Whole People, published in the Worker, 
Sept. 15, 1923 

46 Greetings to the Communist International from the Third 
National Convention of the Workers Party of America, 
published in the Worker, Jan. 12, 1924 

47 Excerpts from an editorial in the Worker, Jan. 5, 1924, 
entitled "Greetings from the International" 

48 Excerpt from an article in the Worker, Jan. 5, 1924, entitled 
"Greetings from Commvmist International to Third 
Convention of Workers Party" 

49 Excerpt from an article in the Worker, Jan. 12, 1924, in 
which the United Front is declared to be an applica- 
tion of the policy of the Communist International in the 
United States 

50 Excerpt from an editorial in the Daily Worker, July 5, 1924, 
entitled "Against Imperialist War," in which it is declared 
that "the imperialist war must be turned into civil war"-_ 

51 Excerpts from an article in the Daily Worker, Mar. 6, 1924, 
entitled "The Commimist International," by Robert 
Minor, in which the Communist International is described 
as "the instrument thru which the working class takes 
possession of the earth" 

52 A statement in the Daily Worker, Mar. 5, 1924, entitled 
"Forward Under Banner of the Communist Interna- 
tional," promulgated by the central executive committee 
of the Workers Party of America 

53 Excerpts from an article in the Daily Worker, Mar. 5, 1924, 
entitled "The Communist International in America," by 
C. E. Ruthenberg, in which the leadership of the Com- 
munist International in the United States is acknowledged 
by the executive secretary of the Workers Party of America. 

54 Excerpts from an article in the Daily Worker, Feb. 28, 1924, 
entitled "The Discussion Within the Russian Communist 
Party," in which the Communist Party of Russia is de- 
scribed as the "leading party of International Commu- 

















Text of a letter from Maxim Litvinoff, people's commissar 
for foreign affairs of the Union of Soviet Socialist Repub- 
lics, to Franklin D. Roosevelt, Presideiil of the United 
States, dated Nov. 16, 1933 

Excerpt from an article in the Communist, November 1934, 
entitled "Leninism Is the Only Marxism of the Imperialist 
Era," by Alex Bittelman and V. J. Jerome, in which the 
authors advocate the transformation of "imperialist vi^ar 
into revolution" 

Text of chapter VIII from "Foundations of Leninism," by 
Joseph Stalin, published bv International Publishers, 
1934 1 

Text of a resolution of the Sixth World Congress of the 
Communist International on The Struggle Against 
Imperialist War and the Tasks of the Communists, 
published by Workers Library Publishers in a second 
edition, July 1934 

Text of chapter IV from "Foundations of Leninism," by 
Joseph Stalin, published by International Publishers, 1934. 

An excerpt from an article in the Communist, August 1934, 
entitled "The Leninist Party as Leader of the Struggle 
Against Itaperialist War," by H. M. Wicks, in which the 
author advocates "armed uprising," "civil war," and 
"the abolition of capitalism" 

Excerpts from an article in the Communist, August 1934, 
entitled "The Tasks of Revolutionary Social-Democracy in 
the European War," by V. I. Lenin, in which the author 
advocates civil war and declares that "the workers have no 

Text of the Thesis of the Thirteenth Plenum of the Execu- 
tive Committee of the Communist International, en- 
titled "Fascism, the Danger of War and Tasks of the 
Communist Parties," published in the Communist, 
February 1934 

Text of an article in the Communist, August 1934, entitled 
"For a Bolshevik Antiwar Struggle," by Alex Bittleman 

Text of an article in the Communist, September 1934, 
entitled "15 Years of Our Party," by Max Bedacht 

The text of the Resolutions of the Seventh World Congress 
of the Communist International, including the closing 
speech of Georgi Dimitroff — a pamphlet published by the 
Workers Library Publishers, November 1935 

The text of a speech delivered by Georgi Dimitroff on Aug. 
2, 1935, at the Seventh World Congress of the Communist 

The text of a booklet entitled "The Communist Party — 
A Manual on Organization," by J. Peters, published in 
July 1935 

Excerpts from a pamphlet entitled "Why Communism?" 
by M. J. Olgin, published in May 1935 

Excerpts from a pamphlet entitled "The Negroes in a 
Soviet America," by James W. Ford and James S. Allen, 
published in June 1935 

Excerpt from a pamphlet entitled "Marxism vs. Liberalism — 
An Interview of Joseph Stalin by H. G. Wells," published 
in 1935 

Excerpts from a pamphlet entitled "Youth and Fascism," 
by O. Kuusinen, published in November 1935 

Excerpt from a book entitled "State and Revolution," by 
V. I. Lenin, dealing with the subject of "Class Society and 
the State," published in its fourth printing in 1935 





106 Excerpt from a book entitled "State and Revolution," by 
V. I. Lenin, dealing with the subject of "The Destruction 
of Parliamentarism," published in its fourth printing in 

107 Excerpt from a book entitled "State and Revolution," by 
V. I. Lenin, dealing with the nature of the dictatorship of 
the proletariat, published in its fourth printing in 1935_- 

108 The text of a chapter entitled "Force and Violence," from a 
book entitled "What Is Communism?" by Earl Browder, 
published in its second edition in 1936 

109 The text of a chapter entitled "What About Religion?" from 
a book entitled "What Is Communism?" by Earl Browder, 
published in its second edition in 1936 

110 The text of a chapter entitled "A Glimpse of Soviet Amer- 
ica," from a book entitled "What Is Communism?" by 
Earl Browder, published in its second edition in 1936 

111 The text of an article from the Party Organizer, entitled 
"Work Among Professional People," bv David Armstrong, 
May 1 937 _" 

112 The text of a booklet entitled "Milestones in the History of 
the Communist Partv," by Alex Bittelman, published in 

1937 '..-^: 

113 The text of a letter from Joseph Stalin in reply to one from 
Ivan Philipovich Ivanov, published in the Daily Worker, 
Feb. 17, 1938 

114 The text of a statement of nearlj^ 150 prominent American 
professional people in support of the Soviet Trial Verdict, 
together with the names of the signers of the statement, 
published in the Daily Worker, Apr. 28, 1938 

115 Excerpt from an article in the Daily Worker, May 28, 1938, 
in which it was stated that Dimitroff, Manuilsky, and 
Kuusinen had been proposed for places on the honorary 
presiding committee of the Communist Party's tenth 

116 The text of a speech delivered by Joseph Stalin on Jan. 26, 
1924, 5 days after the death of Lenin, entitled "Lenin's 
Heritage," published in the Daily Worker, Jan. 21, 1938. 

117 The text of article XI from the constitution and bylaws of 
the Communist Party of the United States of America, 
setting forth its affiliation with the Communist Interna- 
tional, published in August 1938 

118 Excerpt from the sworn testimony of Earl Browder before 
the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, Sept. 
6, 1939, in which the general secretary of the Communist 
Party declared that he would try to precipitate civil war 
in the United States in the event of a war between the 
Soviet Union and the United States 

119 Excerpt from the sworn testimony of Alexander Trachten- 
berg before the Special Committee on Un-American 
Activities, Sept. 13, 1939 

120 Excerpt from the sworn testimony of William Z. Foster 
before the Soecial Committee on Un-American Activities, 
Sept. 29, 1939 

121 Excerpt from the sworn testimony of Max Bedacht before 
the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, Oct. 
16, 1939 

122 Excerpt from the sworn testimony of Alexander Trachten- 
berg before the Special Comnu'ttee on Un-American Activ- 
ties, Sept. 13, 1939, on the subject of the distribution of 
the History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. 

123 The text of a special bulletin of the org-educational and 
literature commissions of the national committee of the 
Communist Party of the United States, on the subject 
of the distribution of the History of the Communist Party 
of the Soviet Union 




















An excerpt from the sworn testimony of Earl Browder before 
the Special Committee on Un-Americaa Activities, Sept. 
6, 1939, on the subject of the Communist Party's distribu- 
tion of publications printed in the Soviet Union 

An excerpt from the sworn testimony of Earl Browder before 
the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, Sept. 
6, 1939, on the subject of Comintern delegates to the 
United States 

An excerpt from the sworn testimony of Alexander Trachten- 
berg before the Special Committee on Un-American 
Activities, Sept. 13, 1939, on the subject of his trips to 
the Soviet Union 

An excerjpt from the sworn testimony of Alexander Trachten- 
berg before the Special Committee on Un-American 
Activities, Sept. 13, 1939, on the subject of A. A. Heller, 
head of International Publishers 

Text of a pamphlet entitled "The War and the Working 
CUiss of the CapitaUst Countries," by Georgi Dimitroff, 
published in 1939 

An excerpt from an article in the Sunday Worker, Mar. 5, 
1939, in which the Communist Party of the Soviet Union 
is described as "a model, an example for the Communist 
Parties of all countries" 

Text of a leaflet published by the national committee of the 
Communist Party of the United States, September 1939, 
on the subject of the Second Imperialist War 

An excerpt from the sworn testimony of Earl Browder before 
the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, Sept. 
5, 1939, on the importance of the Dimitroff's book, The 
United Front 

An excerpt from the sworn testimony of Earl Browder before 
the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, Sept. 
5, 1939, on the affiliation of the Communist Party of the 
United States with the Communist International 

An excerpt from the sworn testimony of Earl Browder be- 
fore the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, 
Sept. 5, 1939, on the subject of his reports to meetings of 
the Communist International 

An excerpt from the sworn testimony of Earl Browder be- 
fore the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, 
Sept. 5, 1939, on the subject of the Closest Harmony Be- 
tween the Communist Party of the United States and the 
Communist International 

An excerpt from the sworn testimony of Earl Browder be- 
fore the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, 
Sept. 5, 1939, on the subject of the Closest Harmony 
Between the Communist Party of the United States and 
the Communist International 

A leaflet issued by the Young Communist League of Illinois 
and Lake County, Ind., on the European War and the 
Yanks Are Not Coming 

An excerpt from a leaflet issued by the Communist Party 
of Massachusetts on the European War and the Yanks 
Are Not Coming 

A leaflet issued by the Young Communist League of Cali- 
fornia on the JEuiopean War and the Yanks Are Not 


A leaflet issued bv the Communist Party of New York on 

the European War and the Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Club Lincoln (New York) of the 
Young Communist League on the European War and the 

Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Lincoln Club of the Young Communist 
League on the European War and the Yanks Are Not 
























Leaflet issued by the Communist Party of Los Angeles on 
the European War and the Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the thirty-fourth ward (Philadelphia) of the 
Communist Partly on the European War and the Yanks 
Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Fort George Club (New York) of the 
Yoiuig Communist League on the European War and the 
Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Club Herndon (New York) of the 
Young Communist League on the European War and the 
Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Stuyvesant Club (New York) of the 
Young Communist League on the European War and the 
Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Communist Party (third and fourth 
branches) of New York on the European War and the 
Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Communist Party (Bleecker Street) of 
New York on the European War and the Yanks Are Not 

Leaflet issued by the Communist Party, United States of 
America, on the European War and the Yanks Are Not 

Leaflet issued by the Fort George Club (New York) of the 
Young Communist League on the European War and the 
Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Helen Lynch Club (New York) of the 
Young Communist League on the European War and the 
Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the New York State committees of the 
Communist Party and the Young Communist League on 
the P^uropean War and the Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Young Communist League of Wash- 
ington, D. C, on the European War and the Yanks Are 
Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the national council of the Young Com- 
munist League on the European War and the Yanks Are 
Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Boro Park and Abraham Lincoln 
branches (New York) of the Young Communist League on 
the European War and the Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Communist Party of Indiana on the 
European War and the Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Young Communist League of New 
York on the European War and the Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Communist Party of Massachusetts on 
the European War and the Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Communist Party of Rhode Lsland on 
the European War and the Yanks Are Not Coming 

Leaflet issued by the Communist Party of Union County 
(New Jersey) on the European War and the Yanks Are 
Not Coming 

Excerpt from a prepared speech by Thomas Patrick O'Dea 
and identified by him at a hearing before the Special Com- 
mittee on Un-American Activities, Apr. 3, 1940 

Excerpts from a booklet entitled "The War Crisis — Ques- 
tions and Answers," by William Z. Foster, published in 
January 1940 

The text of stenographic reports of speeches by Stalin, 
Kuusinen, and Molotov on The American Question, 
submitted in evidence by Jay Lovestone at a liearing be- 
fore the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, 
Dec. 2, 1939 



































An excerpt from the sworn testimony of Earl Browder before 
the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, Sept. 
5, 1939, on the principal authoritative writings of the 
Communist Party 

An excerpt from the sworn testimony of Earl Browder before 
the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, Sept. 
5, 1939, on the question of his membership an the execu- 
tive committee of the Communist International 

An excerpt from the sworn testimony of William Z. Foster 
before the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, 
Sept. 29, 1939, on his trips to the Soviet Union 

An excerpt from the sworn testimony of William Z. Foster 
before the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, 
Sept. 29, 1939, on his official position in the Comm,unist 

Text of an address by the Executive Committee of the Com- 
munist International to all members of the Communist 
Partv of the United States, published in the Daily Worker, 
May 20, 1929 

Text of a statement of the Central Executive Committee of 
the Communist Party of the United States on the address 
of the Communist International, published in the Dailv 
Worker, .luly 8, 1929 . 1, 

Text of an editorial from the Daily Worker, June 1, 1929, 
dealing with the question of an educational campaign on 
the address of the Communist International 

Text of an editorial from the Daily Worker, May 27, 1929, 
on the subject of the address of the Communist Inter- 

Endorsements of the address of the Communist Interna- 
tional, published in the Daily Worker, May 30, 1929 

Endorsements of the address of the Communist Interna- 
tional, published in the Daily Worker, May 28, 1929 

Endorsements of the address of the Communist Interna- 
tional, published in the Daily Worker, May 25, 1929 

Endorsements of the address of the Communist Interna- 
tional, published in the Daily Worker, May 27, 1929 

Text of a cable from the Young Communist International 
to the Young Communist League of the United States, 
and the statement of the Young Communist League on 
the cable, published in the Daily Worker, July 11, 1929 

Endorsements of the address of the Communist Interna- 
tional, published in the Daily Worker, May 24, 1929 

Endorsements of the address of the Communist Interna- 
tional, published in the Daily Worker, May 22, 1929 

Endorsements of the address of the Communist Interna- 
tional, published in the Daily Worker, May 23, 1929 

Cablegram from the Young Communist International to the 
Communist Youth League of the United States of America, 
and motions adopted by the Communist Youth League, 
published in the Daily Worker, May 23, 1929 

Text of the decision of the Tenth Plenum of the Executive 
Committee of the Communist International on the appeal 
of Lovestone, published in the Dailv Worker, July 29, 
1929 - 

An article in the Daily Worker, July 9, 1929, entitled "The 
Line of American Right Opposition to the Comintern," 
by William W. Weinstone 

Statement of the Central Committee of the Communist 
Party of the United States on the appeal of Jay Love- 
stone and others to the Communist International, pub- 
lished in the Daily Worker, July 25, 1929 















Excerpt from a pamphlet entitled "Draft Resolution of the 
Eighth Convention of the Communist Party, United 
States of America," on turning imperialist war into civil 
war, published in March 1934 

Excerpt from a pamphlet entitled "Theses and Decisions of 
the Thirteenth Plenum of the Executive Committee of the 
Communist International — 'December 1933," on turning 
imperialist war into civil war, published in March 1934 

Excerpt from a pamphlet entitled "Theses and Resolutions 
for the Seventh National Convention of the Communist 
Party of United States of America by Central Committee 
Plenum," on turning imperialist war into civil war and the 
defeat of "our own" capitalist government, published in 

Excerpt from a pamphlet entitled "Theses and Resolutions 
for the Seventh National Convention of the Communist 
Party of the United States of America by Central Com- 
mittee Plenum," on the defense of the Soviet Union, 
published in 1930 

Excerpt from a pamphlet entitled "Theses and Resolutions 
for the Seventh National Convention of the Communist 
Party of the United States of America by Central Com- 
mittee Plenum," on the preparation for imperialist war, 
published in 1930 

Excerpt from an article in the Communist, September 1933, 
entitled "The Intensified Drive Toward Imperialist War," 
by William W. Weinstone, on work among the armed 

Excerpt from a book entitled "Communism in the United 
States," by Earl Browder, on rooting the American 
League Against War and Fascism in the basic and war 
industries, published in 1935 

Excerpt from International Press Correspondence, Sept. 7, 
1935, on Communist work in war industries 

Excerpt from International Press Correspondence, Aug. 31, 
1935, on the work of the American Youth Congress in 
war industries 

Excerpt from International Press Correspondence, Aug. 10, 
1935, on Communist work in war industries 

Excerpt from International Press Correspondence, Aug. 3, 
1935, on the work of the World Committee Against War 
and Fascism (Amsterdam) in the war industries 

Excerpt from International Press Correspondence, Apr. 20, 
1935, on the work of water-transport workers against war 

Excerpt from International Press Correspondence, Apr. 13, 
1935, on the work of the World Committee Against War 
and Fascism in war industries 













Exhibit No. 1 

[Source: A pamphlet published by International Publishers, New York, 1932] 


By Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels 


(Edited and annotated by Friedrich Engels) 

International Publishers, New York 


(By Friedricii Engels) 

The Manifesto was published as the platform of the Comnnuiist League, a 
workingmen's association, first exclusively German, later on international, and, 
under the political conditions of the Continent before 1S48, unavoidably a secret 
society. At a Congress of the League, held in London in November, 1847, Marx and 
Engels were commissioned to prepare for publication a complete theoretical and 
practical party programme. Drawn up in Germany, in January, 1848, the manu- 
script was sent to the printer in London a few weeks before the French revolution 
of February 24th.' A French translation was brought out in Paris, shortly before 
the insurrection of June, 1848." The first English translation, by INIiss Helen Mac- 
farlane, appeared in George Julian Harney's Red Republican, London, 1850. A 
Danish and a Polish edition had also been published. 

The defeat of the Parisian insurrection of June, 1848 — the first great battle 
between proletariat and bourgeoisie — drove again into the background, for a 
time, the social and political aspirations of the European working class. Thence- 
forth, the struggle for supremacy was again, as it had been before the revolution 
of February, solely between dilTerent sections of the propertied class ; the working 
class was reduced to a tight for political elbow-room, and to the position of extreme 
wing of the middle-class Radicals. Wherever independent proletarian movements 
continued to show signs of life, they were ruthlessly hunted down. Thus the 
Prussian police hunted out the Central Board of the Communist League, then 
located in Cologne. The members were arrested, and, aftei- eighteen months' 
imprisonment, they were tried in October, 1852. This celebrated "Cologne Com- 
munist Trial" lasted from October 4th till November 12th ; seven of the prisoners 
were sentenced to terms of imprisonment in a fortress, varying from three to six 
years. Immediately after the sentence, the League was formally dissolved by the 
remaining members. As to the Manifesto, it seemed thenceforth to be doomed to 

When the European working class had recovered sufficient strength for another 
attack o]i the ruling classes, the International Workingmen's Association sprang 
up. But this association, formed with the express aim of welding into one body 
the whole militant proletariat of PiUrope and America, could not at once proclaim 
the principles laid down in the Manifesto. The International was bound to have a 
progrannne broad enough to be acceptable to the trades unions, to the 
followers of Proudhon ' in France, Belgium, Italy, and Spain, and to the Lassall- 
eans^ in Germany. Marx, who drew up this programme to the satisfaction of all 
parties, entirely trusted to the intellectual development of the working class, which 
was sure to result from combined action and mutual discussion. The very events 
and vicissitudes of the struggle against capital, the defeats even more than the 
victories, could not help bringing home to men's minds the insufliciency of their 
various favourite nostrums, and preiiaring the way for a more complete insight 
into the true conditions of working-class emancipation. And Marx was right. 
The International, on its breaking up in 1874, left the workers quite different men 

See footnotes on p. 10. 

94931 — 40— app., pt. 1 2 


from what it had found them iu 1864. Proiidhoiiism in France, Lassalleanism in 
Germany were dying out, and even the conservative Engli.sli trades unions, though 
most of them had long since severed their connection with the International, were 
gradually advancing towards that point at which, last year at Swansea, their 
president could say in their name "continental Socialism has lost its terrors for 
us." In fact, the principles of the Manifesto had made considerable headway 
among the workingmen of all countries. 

The Manifesto itself thus came to the front again. Since 1850 the German text 
had been reprinted several times in Switzerland, England and America. In 1872, 
it was translated into English in New York, where the tran.slation was published 
in Woodhiill and Claflin's Weekly. From this English version, a French one was 
made in Lc Soeialiste of New York. Since then at least two more English trans- 
lations, more or less mutilated, have been brought out in America, and one of 
them has been reprinted in England. The first Russian translation, made by 
Bakunin, was published at Herzen's Kolokol office in Geneva, about 1863 ; a second 
one, by the heroic Vera Zasulich, also in Geneva, in 1882.^ A new Danish edition 
is to be found in Soeialdeniokrutisk Bibliothek, Copenhagen, 18S5; a fresh French 
tran.slation in Le Soeialiste, Paris, 1886. From this latter, a Spanish ver.sion was 
prepared and published in IMadrid, iu 1886. Not counting the German reprints 
there had been at least twelve editions. An Armenian translation, which was to be 
published in Con.stantinople some time ago, did not see the light, I am told, be- 
cause the publisher was afraid of bringing out a book with the name of Marx on 
it, while the translator declined to call it his own production. Of further trans- 
lations into other languages I have heard, but have not seen. Thus the history of 
the Manifesto reflects, to a great extent, the history of the modern working class 
movement; at present it is undoubtedly the most widespread, the most interna- 
tional producticni of all Socialist literature, the common platform acknowledged by 
millions of workingmen from Siberia to California. 

Yet, when it was written, we could not have called it a Soeialist manifesto. 
By Socialists, in 1S47, were understood, on the one hand, the adherents of the 
various Utopian systems: Owenites " in England, Fourierists ' in France, both of 
them already reduced to the position of mere sects, and gradually dying out ; on 
the other hand, the most multifarious social quacks, who, by all manners of 
tinkering, profes.'-ed to redi'ess, without any danger to capital and profit, all sorts 
of social grievances, in both cases men outside the working class movement, and 
looking rather to the "educated" classes for support. Whatever portion of the 
working class had become convinced of the insuflieiency of mere political revolu- 
tions, and had proclaimed the necessity of a total social change, called itself i^om- 
munist. It was a crude, rough-hewn, purely instinctive sort of Communism ; still, 
it touched the cardinal point and was powerful enough amongst the working class 
to produce the Utopian Communism of Cabet ^ in France, and of Weitling" in 
Germany. Thus, in 1847, Socialism w;is a middle class movement. Communism a 
working class movement. Socialism was, on the continent at least, 'respectable"; 
Communism was the very opposite. And as our notion, from the very beginning, 
was that "the emancipation of the working class must be the act of the working 
class itself," there could be no doubt as to which of the two names we must take. 
Moreover, we have, ever since, been far from repudiating it. 

The JSlanifesto being our joint production, I consider myself bound to state 
that the fundamental proposition which forms its nucleus, belongs to Marx. 
That proposition is: That in every historical epoch, the prevailing mode of eco- 
nomic production and exchange, and the social organisation necessaiily following 
from it, form the basis upon which is built up, and from which alone can be 
explained, the political and intellectual history of that epoch ; that consequently 
the whole history of mankind (since the dissolution of primitive tribal society, 
holding land in common ownership) has been a history of class struggles, contests 
between exploiting and exploited, ruling and oppressed classes; that the history 
of these class struggles form a series of evolutions in which, nowadays, a stage 
has been reached where the exploited and oppressed class — the proletariat — can- 
not attain its emancipation from the sway of the exploiting and ruling class — the 
bourgeoisie — without at the same time, and once and for all. emancipating society 
at large from all exploitation, oppression, class distinctions and class struggles. 

This proposition, which, in my opinion, is destined to do for history what 
Darwin's theory has done for biology, we, both of us, had been gradually ap- 
proaching for some years before 1845. How far I had independently progressed 
towards it, is best shown by my Conditimt of the Working Class in Enijland}" 
But when I again met Marx at Brussels, in spring, 1845, he had it alieady worked 

See footnotes on p. 19. 


out, and put it before me, in terms almost as clear as those in which I have 
stated it here. 

From our joint preface to the German edition of 1872, I quote : 

"However much the state of things may have altered during the last 25 years, 
the general principles laid down in this Manifesto are, on the whole, as correct 
to-day as ever. Here and there some detail might be improved. The practical 
application of the principles will dei>end, as the Manifesto itself states, everywhere 
and at all times, on the historical conditions for the time being existing, and, for 
that reason, no special stress is laid on the revolutionary measures proposed at 
the end of Section II. That passage would, in many respects, be very differently 
worded to-day. In view of the gigantic strides of modern industry since 1848, 
and of the accompanying improved and extended organisation of the working 
class, in view of the practical experience gained, first in the February rev(jlution, 
and then, still more, in the Paris Commune, where the proletariat for the iirst 
time held political power for two whole months, this programme has in some 
details become anticpiated. Olie thing especially was proved by the Conmume, 
viz., that 'the working class cannot simply lay hold of the ready-made state 
machinery, and wield it for its own purposes.' (See The Civil War in Franee ; 
Address by the General Council of the International Workingnien's Association, 
1871, where this point is further developed.) Further, it is self-evident, that the 
criticism of Socialist literature is deficient in relation to the present time, be- 
cause it comes down only to 1847 ; also, that the remarks on the relation of the 
Communists to the various opposition parties (Section IV), although in principle 
still correct, yet in practice are antiquated, because the political situation has 
been entirely changed, and the progress of hi.story has swept from off the earth 
the greater portion of the political parties there enumerated. 

"But then, the Manifesto has become a historical document which we have no 
longer any right to alter." 

The present translation is by Mr. Samuel Moore, the translator of the greater 
portion of INIarx's Capital. We have revised it in common, and I have added a 
few notes explanatory of historical allusions. 

London, January 30th, 1888. 

Manifesto of the Communist Party 
(By Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels) 

A spectre is haunting Europe — the spectre of Communism. All the powers of 
old Europe have entered into a holy alliance to exorcise this spectre : Pope and 
Czar, jMetternich and Guizot, French Radicals '^ and German police-spies. 

Where is the party in opposition that has not been decried as communistic by 
its opponents in power? Where the Opposition that has not hurled back the 
branding reproach of Comnmnism, against the more advanced opposition parties, 
as well as against its reactionary adversaries? 

Two things result from this fact : 

I. Communism is already acknowledged by all European powers to be itself 
a power. 

II. It is high time that Communists should openly, in the face of the whole 
world, publish their views, their aims, their tendencies, and meet this nursery 
tale of the spectre of Communism with a manifesto of the party itself. 

To this end. Communists of various nationalities have assembled in London, 
and sketched the following manifesto, to be published in the English, French, 
German, Italian, Flemish and Danish languages. 


The history of all hitherto existing society " is the history of class struggles. 

Freeman, and slave, patrician and plebeian, lord and serf, guild-master " 
and journeyman, in a word, oppressor and oppressed, stood in constant opposi- 
tion to one another, carried on an uninterrupted, now hidden, now open tight, 
a fight that each time ended, either in a revolutionary reconstitution of society 
at large, or in the common ruin of the contending classes. 

In the earlier epochs of history, we find almost everywhere a complicated 
arrangement of society into various orders, a manifold grad'ation of social rank. 
In ancient Rome we have patricians, knights, plebeians, slaves ; in the Middle 
Ages, feudal lords, vassals, guild-masters, journeymen, apprentices, serfs; in 
almost all of these classes, again, subordinate gradations. 

See footnotes on p. 19. 


The modern bourgeois society that has sprouted from the ruins of feudal 
society, has not done away with class antagonisms. It has but established 
new classes, new conditions of oppression, new forms of struggle in place of the 
old ones. 

Our epoch, the epoch of the bourgeoisie, possesses, however, this distinctive 
feature : It has simplified the class antagonisms. Society as a whole is more 
and more splitting up into two great hostile camps, into two great classes 
directly facing each other — bourgeoisie and proletariat. 

From the serfs of the Middle Ages sprang the chartered burghers ^ of the 
earliest towns. From these burgesses the first elements of the bourgeoisie were 

The discovery of America, the rounding of the Cape, opened up fresh ground 
for the rising bourgeoisie. The East-Indian and Chinese markets, the colonisa- 
tion of America, trade with the colonies, the increase in the means of exchange 
and in commodities generally, gave to commerce, to navigation, to industry, an 
impulse never before known, and thereby, to the revolutionary element in the 
tottering feudal society, a rapid development. 

The feudal system of industry, in which industrial production was monopolised 
by closed guilds," now no longer sufficed, for the growing wants of the new 
markets. The manufacturing system took its place. The guild-masters were 
pushed aside by the manufacturing middle class ; division of labour between 
the different corporate guilds vanished in the face of division of labour in 
e'ach single workshop. 

Meantime the markets kept ever growing, the demand ever rising. Even 
manufacture no longer sufficed. Thereupon, steam and machinery revolution- 
ised industrial production. The place of manufacture was taken by the giant, 
modern industry, the place of the industrial middle class, by industrial million- 
aires — the le'aders of whole industrial armies, the modern bourgeois. 

Modern industry has established the world market, for which the discovery 
of America paved the way. This market has given an immense development 
to commerce, to navigation, to communication by land. This development has, 
in its turn, reacted on the extension of industry ; and in proportion as industry, 
commerce, navigation, r'ailways extended, in the same proportion the bourgeoisie 
developed, increased its capital, and pushed into the background every class 
handed down from the Middle Ages. 

We see, therefore, how the modern bourgeoisie is itself the product of a long 
course of development, of a series of revolutions in the modes of production and 
of exchange. 

Each step in the development of the bourgeoisie was accompanied by a 
corresponding political advance of that class. An oppressed class under the 
sway f>f the feudal nobility, it became an armed and self-governing association 
in the mediaeval commune ;" here independent urban republic as in Italy and 
Germany), there taxable "third estate" of the monarchy ('as in France) ; after- 
wards, in the period of manufacture proper, serving either the semi-feudal or 
the absolute monarchy as a counterpoise against the nobility, and, in fact, 
corner-stone of the great monarchies in general — the bourgeoisie has at last, 
since the establishment of modern industry and of the world market, conquered 
for itself, in the modern representative state, exclusive political sway. The 
executive of the modern state is but a committee for managing the common 
affairs of the whole l)ourgeoisie. 

The bourgeoisie has played a most revolutionary role in history. 

The bourgeoisie, wherever it h'as got the upper hand, has put an end to all 
feudal, patriarchal, idyllic relations. It has pitilessly torn asunder the motley 
feudal ties that bound man to his "natural superiors," and has left no other 
bond between man and man than naked self-interest, than callous "cash pay- 
ment." It has drowned the most heavenly ecstasies of religious fervour, of 
chivalrous enthusiasm, of philistine sentimentalism, in the icy water of ego- 
tistical calculation. It has resolved personal worth into exchange value, land 
in place of the numberless indefeasible chartered freedoms, has set up that 
single, unconscionable freedon — Free Trade. In one woi'd, for exploitation, 
veiled by religious and political illusions, it has substituted naked, shameless, 
direct, lirutal exploitation. 

The bourgeoisie has stripped of its halo every occupation hitherto honoiired 
and looked up to with reverent awe. It has converted the physician, the lawyer, 
the priest, the poet, the man of science, into its paid wage-labourers. 

The bourgeoisie has torn 'away from the family its sentimental veil, and has 
reduced the family relation to a mere money relation. 

See footnotes on p. 19. 


The bourgeoisie lias disclosed how it came to iDass that the brutal display 
of vigour ill the Middle Ages, which reactionaries so much admire, fouiid its 
fitting complement in the most slothful indolence. It has been the first to show 
what man's activity can bring about. It has accomplished wonders far sur- 
passing Egyptian pyramids, Roman aqueducts, and Gothic cathedrals; it bus 
conducted expeditious that ijut in the shade all former migrations of nations 
and crusades. 

The bourgeoisie cannot exist without constantly revolutionising the instru- 
ments of production, and thereby the relations of production, and with them the 
whole relations of society. Conservation of the old modes of production in 
unaltered form, was, on the contrary, the first condition of existence for all 
earlier industrial classes. Constant revolutionising of production, uninterrupted 
disturbance of all social conditions, everlasting uncertainty and agitation dis- 
tinguish the bourgeois epoch from all earlier ones. All fixed, fast-frozen rela- 
tions, with their train of ancient and venerable prejudices and opinions, are 
swept away, all new-formed ones become antiquated before they can ossify. 
All that is solid melts into air, all that is holy is profaned, and man is at last 
compelled to face with sober senses his real conditions of life and his relations 
with his kind. 

The need of a constantly expanding market for its products chases the 
bourgeoisie over the whole surface of the globe. It must nestle everywhere, 
settle everywhere, establish connections everywhere. 

The bourgeoisie has through its exploitation of the world market given a 
cosmopolitan character to production and consumption in every country. To 
the great chagrin of reactionaries, it has drawn from under the feet of industry 
the national ground on which it stood. All old-established national industries 
have been destroyed or are daily being destroyed. They are dislodged by new 
industries, whose introduction becomes a life and death question for all civilised 
nations, by industries that no longer work up indigenous raw material, but raw 
material drawn from the remotest zones ; industries whose products are con- 
sumed, not only at home, but in every quarter of the globe. In place of the old 
wants, satisfied by the production of the country, we find new wants, requiring 
for their satisfaction the products of distant lands and climes. In place of 
the old local and national seclusion and self-sufficiency, we have intercourse 
in every direction, universal inter-dependence of nations. And as in material, so 
also in intellectual productions. The intellectual creations of individual nations 
become common property. National one-sidedness and narrow-mindedness be- 
come more and more impossible, and from the numerous national and local 
literatures there arises a world literature. 

The bourgeoisie, by the rapid improvement of all instruments of production, 
by the immensely facilitated means of communication, draws all nations, even 
the most barbarian, into civilisation. The cheap prices of its commodities are 
the heavy artillery with which it batters down all Chinese walls, with which it 
forces the barbarians' intensely obstinate hatred of foreigners to capitulate. 
It compels all nations, on pain of extinction, to adopt the bourgeois mode of 
production ; it comi^els them to introduce what it calls civilisation into their 
midst, i. e., to become bourgeois themselves. In a word, it creates a world after 
its own image. 

The bourgeoisie has subjected the country to the rule of the towns. It has 
created enormous cities, has greatly increased the urban population as compared 
with the rural, and has thus rescued a considerable part of the population from 
the idiocy of rural life. Just as it has made the country dependent on the 
towns, so it has made barbarian and semi-barbarian countries dependent on the 
civilised ones, nations of peasants on nations of bourgeois, the East on the West. 

More and more the bourgeoisie keeps doing away with the scattered state of 
the population, of the means of production, and of property. It has agglomer- 
ated population, centralised means of production, and has concentrated property 
in a few hands. The necessary consequence of this was political centralisation. 
Independent, or but loosely connected provinces, with separate interests, laws, 
governments and systems of taxation, became lumped together into one nation, 
with one government, one code of laws, one national class interest, one frontier 
and one customs tariff. 

The bourgeoisie, during its rule of scarce one hundred years, has created more 
massive and more colossal productive forces than have all proceding generations 
together. Subjection of nature's forces to man, machinery, application of chem- 
istry to industry and agriculture, steam-navigation, railways, electric telegraphs, 
clearing of whole continents for cultivation, canalisation of rivers, whole popula- 


tions conjured out of the ground — what earlier century had even a presentiment 
that such productive forces slumbered in the lap of social labour? 

We see then that the means of production and of exchange, which served 
as the foundation for the growth of the bourgeoisie, were generated in feudal 
society. At a certain stage in the development of these means of production 
and of exchange, the conditions under which feudal society produced and ex- 
changed, the feudal organization of agriculture and manufacturing industry, 
in a word, the feudal relations of property became no longer compatible with 
the already developed productive forces ; they became so many fetters. They 
had to be liurst asunder ; they were burst asunder. 

Into their place stepped free competition, accompanied by a social and politi- 
cal constitution adapted to it, and by the economic and political sway of the 
bourgeois class. 

A similar movement is going on before our own eyes. Modern bourgeois 
society with its relations of production, of exchange and of property, a society 
that has conjured up such gigantic means of production and of exchange, is like 
the sorcerer who is no longer able to control the powers of the nether world 
whom he has called up by his spells. For many a decade past the history of 
industry and commerce is but the history of the revolt of modern productive 
forces against modern conditions of production, against the property relations 
that are the conditions for the existence of the boiirgeoisie and of its rule. It 
is enough to mention the commercial crises that by their periodical return put 
the existence of the entire bourgeois society on trial, each time more threaten- 
ingly. In these crises a great part not only of the existing products, but also 
of the previously created productive forces, are periodically destroyed. In these 
crises there breaks out an epidemic that, in all earlier epochs, would have 
seemed an absurdity — the epidemic of over-production. Society suddeidy finds 
itself put back into a state of momentary barbarism: it appears as if a famine, 
a universal war of devastation had cut off the supply of every means of sub- 
s^istence ; industry and conmieree seem to be destroyed. And why? Because 
there is too much civilisation, too much means of subsistence, too much industry, 
too much conunerce. The productive forces at the disposal of society no longer 
tend to further the development of the conditions of bourgeois property ; on the 
contrary, they have become too powerful for these conditions, by which they 
are fettered, and no sooner do they overcome these fetters than they bring dis- 
order into the whole of bourgeois society, endanger the existence of bourgeois 
property. The conditions of boui'geois society are too narrow to comprise the 
wealth created by them. And how does the bourgeoisie get over these crises? 
On the one hand by enforced destruction of a mass of productive forces : on 
the other, by the conquest of new markets, and by the more thorough exploita- 
tion of the old ones. That is to say, by paving the way for motre extensive and 
more destructive crises, and by diminishing the means whereby crises are 

The weapons with which the bourgeoisie felled feudalism to the ground are 
now turned against the bourgeoisie itself. 

But not only has the bourgeoisie forged the weapons that bring death to itself; 
it has also called into existence the men who are to wield those weapons — the 
modern working class — the proletarians. 

In proportion as the bourgeoisie, (". e., capital, is developed, in the same pro- 
portion is the proletariat, the modern working class, developed — a class of 
labourers, who live only so long as they find work, and who find work (mly so 
long as their labour increases capital. Tliese labourers, who must sell them- 
selves piecemeal, are a commodity, like every other article of commerce, and are 
consequently exposed to all the vicissitudes of competition, to all the fluctiiations 
of the market. 

Owing to the extensive use of machinery and to division of labour, the 
work of the proletarians has lost all individual character, and, consequently, 
all charm for the workman. He becomes an appendage of the machine, and it 
is only the most simple, most monotonous, and most easily acquired kn;ick, that 
is required of him. Hence, the cost of production of a workman is restricted, 
almost entirely, to the means of subsistence that he requires for his mainte- 
nance, and for the propagation of his race. But the price of a commodity, and 
therefore also of labour, is equal to its cost of production. In proportion, there- 
fore, as the repulsiveness of the work increases, the wage decreases. Nay more, 
in proportion as the use of machinery and division of labour increases, in the 
same proportion the burden of toil also increases, whether by prolongation of 
the working hours, by increase of the work exacted in a given time, or by 
increased speed of the machinery, etc. 


Modern industry has converted the little workshop of the patriarchal master 
into the great factory of the industrial capitalist. Masses of lahourers, crowded 
into the factory, are organized like soldiers. As privates of the industrial army 
they are placed under the command of a perfect hierarchy of officers and ser- 
geants. Not only are they slaves of the bourgeois class, and of the bourgeois 
state; they are daily and hourly enslaved by the machine, by the over-looker, 
and, above all, by the individual bourgeois manufacturer himself. The more 
openly this despotism proclaims gain to be its end and aim, the more petty, the 
more hateful and the more embittering it is. 

The less the skill and exertion of strength implied in manual labour, in other 
words, the more modern industry develops, the more is the labour of men super- 
seded by that of women. Differences of age and sex have no longer any dis- 
tinctive social validity for the working class. AH are instruments of labour, 
more or less expensive to use, according to their age and sex. 

No sooner has the labourer received his wages in cash, for the moment escap- 
ing exploitation by the manufacturer, than he is set upon by the other portions 
of the liourgeoisie, the landlord, the shopkeeper, the pawnbroker, etc. 

The lower strata of the middle class — the small tradespeople, shopkeepers, 
and retired tradesmen generally, the handicraftsmen and peasants — all these 
sink gradually into the proletariat, partly because their diminutive capital does^ 
not suffice for the scale on which modern industry is carried on, and is swamped 
in the competition with the large capitalists, partly their specialised 
skill is reiKlered worthless by new methods of production. Thus the proletariat 
is recruited from all classes of the population. 

The proletariat goes through various stages of development. With its birth 
begins its struggle with the boiirgeoisie. At first the contest is carried on by 
individual labourers, then by the work people of a factory, then by the opera- 
tives of one trade, in one locality, against the individual bourgeois who directly 
exploits them. Tliey direct their attacks not against the bourgeois conditions 
of pi-oduction, but against the instruments of production themselves ; they 
destroy imported wares that compete with their labour, they smash machinery 
to pieces, they set factories ablaze, they seek to restore by force the vanished 
status of the workman of the Middle Ages. 

At this stage the labourers still form an incoherent mass scattered over the 
whole country, and broken up by their mutual competition. If anywhere they 
unite to form more compact bodies, this is not yet the consequence of their 
own active union, but of the union of the bourgeoise, which class, in order to 
attain its own political ends, is compelled to set the w^hole proletariat in motion, 
and is moreover still able to do so for a time. At this stage, therefore, the 
proletarians do not fight their enemies, but the enemies of their enemies, the 
remnants of absolute monarchy, the landowners, the nonindustrial bourgeois, 
the petty bourgeoisie. Thus the whole historical movement is concentrated in 
the hands of the bourgeoisie; every victory so obtained is a victory for the 

But with the development of industry the proletariat not only increases in 
number; it becomes concentrated in greater masses, its strength "grows, and it 
feels that strength more. The various interests and conditions of life witliin 
the ranks of the proletariat are more and more equalised, in proportion as 
machinery obliterates all distinctions of labour and nearly everywhere reduces 
wages to the same low level. The growing competition among the bourgeois, 
and the resulting commercial crises, make the wages of the workers ever more 
fluctuating. The unceasing improvement of machinery, ever more rapidly 
developing, makes their livelihood more and more precarious ; the collisions 
between individual workmen and individual bourgeois take more and more the 
character of collisions between two classes. Thereupon the workers begin to 
form combinations (trade unions) against the bourgeoisie; they club together 
in order to keep up the rate of wages; they found permanent associations in 
order to make provisions beforehand for these occasional revolts. Here and 
there the contest breaks out into riots. 

Now and then the workers are victorious, but only for a time. The real 
fruit of their l)attles lies, not in the immediate result, but in the ever expand- 
ing union of the workers. This union is furthered by the improved means of 
communication which are created by modern industry and which place the 
workers of different localities in contact with one another. It was just this 
contact that was needed to centralise the numerous local struggles, all of the 
same character, into one national struggle between classes. But every class 
struggle is a political struggle. And that union, to attain which the burghers 


of the Middle Ages, with their miserable highways, required centuries, the 
modern proletarians, thanks to railways achieve in a few years. 

This organisation of the proletarians into a class, and consequently into a 
political party, is continually being upset again by the competition between the 
workers themselves. But it ever rises up again, stronger, firmer, mighter. It 
compels legislative recognition of particular interests of the workers, by taking 
advantage of (he divisions among the bourgeoisie itself. Thus the ten-hour 
bill " in England was carried. 

Altogether, collisions between the classes of the old society further the course 
of development of the proletariat in many ways. The bourgeoisie finds itself 
involved in a constant battle. At first with the aristocracy ; later on, with those 
portions of the bourgeoisie itself whose interests have become antagonistic to 
the progress of industry ; at all times with the bourgeoisie of foreign countries. 
In all those battles it sees itself compelled to appeal to the proletariat, to ask for 
its help, and thus, to drag it into the political arena. The bourgoisie itself, 
therefore, supplies the proletariat with its own elements of political and general 
education, in other words, it furnishes the proletariat with weapons for fight- 
ing the bourgeoisie. 

Further, as we have already seen, entire sections of the ruling classes are, 
by the advance of industry, precipitated into the proletariat, or are at least 
threatened in their conditions of existence. These also supply the proletariat 
with fresli elements of enlightenment and progress. 

Finally, in times when the class struggle nears the decisive hour, the process 
of dissolution going on within the ruling class, in fact within the whole range 
of old society, assumes such a violent, glaring character, that a small section of 
the ruling class cuts itself adrift, and joins the revolutionary class, the class 
that holds the future in its hands. Just as, therefore, at an earlier period, a 
section of the nobility went over to the bourgeoisie, so now a portion of the 
bourgeoisie goes over to the proletariat, and in particular, a portion of the 
bourgeois ideologists, v/ho have raised themselves to the level of comprehending 
theoretically the historical movement as a whole. 

Of all the classes that stand face to face with the bourgeoisie today, the 
proletariat alone is a really revolutionary class. The other classes decay and 
finally disappear in the face of modern industry; the proletariat is its special 
and essential product. 

The lower middle class, the small manufacturer, the shopkeeper, the artisan, 
the peasant, all these fight against the bourgeoisie, to save from extinction 
their existence as fractions of the middle class. They are therefore not revo- 
lutionary, but conservative. Nay more, they are reactionary, for they try to 
roll back tlie wheel of history. If by chance they are revolutionary, they are 
so only in view of their impending transfer into the proletariat; they thus 
defend not their present, but their future interests ; they desert their own 
standpoint to adopt that of the proletariat. 

The "dangerous class," the social scum (Lympenproletariat), that passively 
rotting mass thrown off by the lowest layers of old society, may, here and there, 
be swept into the movement by a proletarian revolution ; its conditions of life, 
however, prepare it far more for the part of a bribed tool of reactionary 

The social conditions of the old society no longer exists for the proletariat. 
The proletarian is without property; his relation to his wife and children has 
no longer anything in common with bourgeois family relations; modern in- 
dustrial labour, modern subjection to capital, the same in England as in France, 
in America as in Germany, has stripped him of every trace of national char- 
acter. Law, morality, religion, are to him so many bourgeois prejudices, behind 
which lurk in ambush just as many bourgeois interests. 

All the preceding classes that got the upper hand, sought to fortify their 
already acquired status by subjecting society at large to their conditions of 
appropriation. The proletarians cannot become masters of the productive 
forces of society, except by abolishing their own previous mode of appropria- 
tion, and thereliy also every other previous mode of appropriation. They have 
nothing of their own to secure and to fortify; their mission is to destroy all 
previous securities for, and insurances of, individual property. 

All previous historical movements were movements of minorities, or in the 
interest of minorities. The proletarian movement is the self-conscious, inde- 
pendent movement of the immense majority, in the interest of the immense 
majority. The proletariat, the lowest stratum of our present society, cannot 
stir, cannot raise itself up, without the whole superincombent strata of oflicial 
society being sprung into he air. 

See footnotes on p. 19. 


Though not in substance, yet in fomi, the struggle of the proletai-iat with the 
bourgeoisie is at first a national struggle. The proletariat of each country must, 
of course, first of all settle matters with its own bourgeoisie. 

In depicting the most general phases of the development of the proletariat, 
we traced the more or less veiled civil war, ranging within existing society, 
up to the point where that war breaks out into open revolution, and where the 
violent overthrow of the bourgeoisie lays the foundation for the sway of th(j 

Hitherto, every form of society has been based, as we have already seen, 
on the antagonism of oppressing and oppressed classes. But in order to 
oppress a class, certain conditions must be assured to it under which it can, 
at least, continue its slavish existence. The serf, in the period of serfdom, 
raised himself to membership in the commune, just as the petty bourgeois, 
under the yoke of feudal absolutism, managed to develop into a bourgeois. 
The modern labourer, on the contrary, instead of rising with the progress 
of industry, sinks deeper and deeper below the conditions of existence of 
his own class. He becomes a pauper, and pauperism develops more rapidly 
than population and wealth. And here it becomes evident, that the bourgeoisie 
is unfit any longer to be the ruling class in society, and to impose its conditions 
of existence upon society as an over-riding lawi It is unfit to' rule because 
it is incompetent to assure an existence to its slave within his slavery, because 
it cannot help letting him sink into such a state, that it has to feed him, 
instead of being fed by him. Society can no longer live under this bourgeoisie, 
in other words, its existence is no longer compatible with society. 

The essential condition for the existence and sway of the bourgeois class, 
is the formation and augmentation of capital ; the condition for capital is 
wage-labour. Wage-labour rests exclusively on competition between the la- 
bourers. The advance of industry, whose involuntary promoter is the bour- 
geoisie, replaces the isolation of the labourers, due to competition, by their 
revolutionary combination, due to association. The development of modern 
industry, therefore, cuts from under its feet the very foundation on which 
the b6urgeoisie produces and appropriates products. What the bourgeoisie 
therefore produces, above all, are its own grave-diggers. Its fall and the 
victory of the proletariat are equally inevitable. 

II. Proletarians and Communists 

In what relation do the Communists stand to the proletarians as a whole? 

The Communists do not form a separate party opposed to other working 
class parties. 

They have no interests separate and apart from those of the proletariat 
as a whole. 

They do not set up any sectarian principles of their own, by which to shape 
and mould the proletarian movement. 

The Communists are distinguished from the other working class parties 
by tliis only : 1. In the national struggles of the iiroletarians of the different 
countries, they point out and bring to the front the common interests of the 
entire proletariat, independently of all nationality. 2. In the various stages 
of development which the struggle of the working class against the bourgeoisie 
has to pass through, they always and everywhere represent the interests of 
the movement as a whole. 

The Communists, therefore, are on the one hand, practically, the most 
advanced and resolute section of the working class parties of every country, 
that section which pushes forward all others; on the other hand, theoretically, 
they have over the great mass of the proletariat the advantage of clearly 
understanding the line of march, the conditions, and the ultimate general 
results of the proletarian movement. 

The immediate aim of the Communists is the same as that of all the other 
proletarian parties: Formation of the proletariat into a class, overthrow 
of bourgeois supremacy, conquest of political power by the proletariat. 

The theoretical conclusions of the Communists are in no way based on ideas 
or principles that have been invented, or discovered, by this or that would-be 
universal reformer. 

They merely express, in general terms, actual relations springing from an 
existing class struggle, from a historical movement going on under our very 
eyes. The abolition of existing property relations is not at all a distinctive 
feature of Communism. 


All property relations in the past have continually been subect to historical 
change consequent upon the change in historical conditions. 

The French Revolution, for example, abolished feudal property in favour 
of bourgeois property. 

The distinguishing feature of Communism is not the abolition of property 
generally, but the abolition of bourgeois property. But modern bourgeois 
private property is the final and most complete expression of the system of 
producing and appropriating products that is based on class antagonisms, on 
the exploitation of the many by the few. 

In this sense, the theory of the Communists may be summed up in the single 
sentence: Abolition of private property. 

We Communists have been reproached vi^ith the desire of abolishing the 
right of personally acquiring property as the fruit of a man's own labour, 
which property is alleged to be the groundwork of all personal freedom, 
activity and independence. 

Hard-won, self-acquired, self -earned property ! Do you mean the property of 
the petty artisan and of the small peasant, a form of property that preceded 
the bourgeois formV There is no need to abolish that; the development of 
industry has to a great extent already destroyed it, and is still destroying it 

Or do you mean modern bourgeois private property? 

But does wage-labour create any property for the labourer? Not a bit. 
It creates capital, i.e., that kind of property which exploits wage-labour, and 
which cannot increase except upon condition of begetting a new supply of 
wage-labour for fresh exploitation. Property, in its present form, is based 
on the antagonism of capital and wage-labour. Let us examine both sides of 
this antagonism. 

To be a capitalist, is to have not only a purely personal, but a social status 
in production. Capital is a collective product, and only by the united action 
of many members, nay, in the last resort, only by the united action of all 
members of society, can it be set in motion. 

Capital is therefore not a personal, it is a social, power. 

When, therefore, capital is converted into common property, into the property 
of all members of society, personal property is not thereby transformed into 
social property. It is only the social character of the property that is changed. 
It loses its class character). 

Let us now take wage-labour. 

The average price of wage-labour is the minimum wage, i.e., that quantum 
of the means of subsistence which is absolutely requisite to keep the labourer 
in bare existence as a labourer. What, therefore, the wage-labourer appro- 
priates by means of his labour, merely suffices to prolong and reproduce a 
bare existence. We by no means intend to abolish this personal appropria- 
tion of the products of labour, an appropriation that is made for the main- 
tenance and reproduction of human life, and that leaves no surplus wherewith 
to command the labour of others. All that we want to do away with is the 
miserable character of this appropriation, under which the labourer lives 
merely to increase capital, and is allowed to live only insofar as the interest 
of the ruling class require it. 

In bourgeois society, living labour is but a means to increase accumulated 
labour. In Communist society, accumulated labour is but a means to widen, 
to enrich, to promote the existence of the labourer. 

In bourgeois society, therefore, the past dominates the present ; in Com- 
munist society, the present dominates the past. In bourgeois society capital 
is independent and has individuality, while the living person is dependent 
and has no individuality. 

And the abolition of this state of things is called by the bourgeois, abolition 
of individuality and freedom ! And rightly so. The abolition of bourgeois 
individuality, bourgeois independence, and bourgeois freedom is undoubtedly 
aimed at. 

By freedom is meant, under the present bourgeois conditions of production, 
free trade, free soiling and buying. 

But if selling and buying disappears, free selling and buying disappears 
also. This talk about free selling and buying, and all the other "brave words" 
of our bourgeoisie about freedom in general, have a meaning, if any, only 
in contrast with restricted selling and buying, with the fettered traders of 
the Middle Ages, but have no meaning when opposed to the Communist abo- 
lition of buying and selling, of the bourgeois conditions of production, and 
of the bourgeoisie itself. 


You are horrified at our intending to do away with private property. But 
in your existing society, private property is already done away with for 
nine-tenths of the population ; its existence for the few is solely due to its 
non-existence in the hands of those nine-tenths. You reproach us, therefore, 
with intending to do away with a ft)rm of property, the necessary condition 
for whose existence is the non-existence of any property for the immense 
majority of society. 

In a word, you reproach us with intending to do away with your property. 
Precisely so ; that is just what w^e intend. 

From the moment when labour can no longer be converted into capital, 
money, or rent, into a social power capable of being monoiwlised, L e., from 
the moment when individual property can no longer be transformed into 
bourgeois property, into capital, from that moment, you say, individuality 

You must, therefore, confess that by "individual" you mean no other person 
than the bourgeois, than the middle class owner of property. This person 
must, indeed, be swept out of the way, and made impossible. 

Communism deiirives no man of the power to appropriate the products of 
society; all that it does is to deprive him of the power to subjugate the 
labour of .others by means of such appropriation. 

It has been objected, that upon the abolition of private property all work 
will cea.«e, and universal laziness will overtake us. 

According to this, bourgeois society ought long ago to have gone to the 
dogs through sheer idleness ; for those of its members wlio work, acquire 
nothing, and those who acquire anything, do not work. The whole of this 
objection is but another expression of the tautology : There can no longer be any 
wage-labour when there is no longer any capital. 

All objections urged against the Communist mode of producing and appro- 
priating material porducts, have, in the same way, been urged against the 
Communits modes of producing and appropriating intellectual products. Just 
as, to the bourgeois, the disappearance of class property is the disappearance 
of production itself, so the disappearance of class culture is to him identical 
with the disappearance of all culture. 

That culture, the loss of which he laments, is, for the enormous majority, 
a mere training to act as a machine. 

But don't wrangle with us so long as you apply, to our intended abolition 
of bourgeois property, the standard of your bourgeois notions of freedom, 
culture, law, etc. Your very ideas are but the outgrowth of the conditions 
of your bourgeois production and bourgeois property, just as your jurispru- 
dence is but tlie will of your class made into a law for all, a will whose 
essential character and direction are determined by the economic conditions 
of existence of your class. 

Tlie selfish misconception that induces you to transform into eternal laws 
of nature and of reason, the social forms springing from your present mode 
of production and form of property — historical relations that rise and dis- 
appear in the progress of production — this misconception you share with 
every ruling class that has preceded you. What .you see clearly in the case 
of ancient property, what you admit in the case of feudal property, you are 
of course forbidden to admit in the case of your own bourgeois form of 

Abolition of the family ! Even the most radical flare up at this infamous 
proposal of the Ccnnmunists. 

On what foundation is the present family, the bourgeois family based? 
On capital, on private gain. In its comnletely developed form this family 
exists only among the bourgeoisie. But this state of things finds its comple- 
ment in the practical absence of the family among the proletarians, and in 
public prostitution. 

The bourgeois family will vanish as a matter of course when its complement 
vanishes, and both will vanish with the vanishing of capital. 

Do you charge us with wanting to stop the exploitation of children by 
their parents? To this crime we plead guilty. 

But, you will say, we destroy the most hallowed of I'elations, when we 
replace home education by social. 

And your education ! Is not that also social, and determined by the social 
condifions under which you educate, bv the intervention of society, direct or 
indirect, by means of schools, etc.? The Communists have not invented the 
intervention of society in education ; they do but seek to alter the character 


of that intervention, and to rescue education from the influence of tlie ruling 

The bourgeoise claptrap about the family and education, about the hallowed 
co-relation of parent and child, becomes all the more disgusting, the more, by 
the action of modern industry, all family ties among the proletarians are 
torn asunder, and their children transformed into simple articles of commerce 
and instruments of labour. 

But you Communists would introduce community of women, screams the 
whole bourgeoisie in chorus. 

The bourgeois sees in his wife a mere instrument of production. He hears 
that the instruments of production are to be exploited in common, and, 
natiirally, can come to no other conclusion than that the lot of being common 
to all will likewise fall to the women. 

He has not even a suspicion that the real point aimed at is to do awjay 
with the status of women as more instruments of production. 

Foi" the rest, notliing is more ridiculous than the virtuous indignation of 
our bourgeois at the community of women which, they pretend, is to be openly 
and officially established by the Communists. The Communists have no need 
to introduce community of women; it has existed almost from time immemorial. 

Our bourgeois, not content with having the wives and daughters of their 
proletarians at their disposal, not to speak of common prostitutes, take the 
greatest pleasure in seducing each other's wives. 

Bourgeois marriage is in reality a system of wives in common and thus, at 
the most, what the Communists might possibly be reproached with is that 
they desire to introduce, in substitution for a hypocritically concealed, an 
openly legalised community of women. For the rest, it is self-evident, that the 
abolition of the present system of production must bring with it the abolition 
of the community of women springing from that system, i. e., of prostitution 
both public and private. 

The Comnmnists are further reproached with desiring to abolish countries 
and nationality. 

Tlie workingmen have no country. We cannot take from them what they 
have not got. Since the proletariat must first of all acquire political supremacy, 
must rise to be the leading class of the nation, must constitute itself the 
nation, it is, so far, itself national though not in the bourgeois sense of the 

National differences and antagonisms between peoples are vanishing gradually 
from day to day. owing to the development of the bourgeoisie, to freedom of 
commerce, to the world market, to uniformity in the mode of production and 
in the conditions of life corresponding thereto. 

The supremacy of the proletariat will cause them to vanish still faster. 
United action, of the leading civilised countries at least, is one of the first 
conditions f<u" the emancipation of the proletariat. 

In proportion as the exploitation of one individaal by another is put an 
end to, the exploitation of one nation by another will also be put an end to. 
In proportion as the antagonism between classes within the nation vanishes, 
the hostility of one nation to another will come to an end. 

The charges against Communism made from a religious, a pliilosophical, 
and, generally, from an ideoligical standpoint, are not deserving of serious 

Does it require deep intuition to comprehend that man's ideas, views, and 
conceptions, in one word, man's cousciousnoss, changes with every change in 
the conditions of his material existence, in his social relations and in his 
social life? 

What else does the history of ideas prove, than that intellectual production 
changes its character in proportion as material production is changed? The 
ruling ideas of each ngr- have ever been the ideas of its ruling class. 

When people speak of ideas that revolutionise society, they do biit express 
the fact that within the old society the elements of a new one have been created, 
and that the dissolution of the old ideas keeps even pace with the dissolution 
of the old conditions of existence. 

When the ancient world was in its last throes, the ancient religions were over- 
come by Christianity. When Christian ideas succumbed in the 18th century 
to rationalist ideas, feudal society fought its death-battle with the then revo- 
lutionary bourgeoisie. The ideas of religious liberty and freedom of conscience, 
merely gave expression to the sway of free competition within the domain of 


"Undoubtedly," it will be said, "religion, moral, philosophical and juridical 
ideas have been modified in the course of historical development. But reli- 
jiion. morality, philosophy, political science, and law, constantly survived this 

"There are, besides, eternal truths, such as Freedom, Justice, etc., that are 
common to all states of society. But Communism abolishes eternal truths, 
it abolishes all religion, and all moi'ality, instead of constituting them on a 
new basis; it therefore acts in contradiction to all past historical experience." 

What does this accusation reduce itself to? The history of all past society 
has consisted in the development of class antagonisms, antagonisms that as- 
sumed different forms at different epochs. 

But whatever form they may have taken, one fact is common to all past ages, 
vie, the exploitation of one part of society by the other. No wonder, then, that 
the social con.sciousness of past ages, despite all the multiplicity and variety 
it displays, moves within certain common forms, or general ideas, which 
cannot completely vanish except with the total disappearance of class 

The Connnunist revolution is the most radical rupture with traditional prop- 
erty relations ; no wonder that its development involves the most radical rup- 
ture with traditional ideas. 

But let us have done with the bourgeois objections to Communism. 

We have seen above, that the first step in the revolution by the working 
class, is to raise the proletariat to the position of ruling class, to establish 

The proletariat will use its political supremacy to wrest, by degrees, all 
capital from the bourgeoisie, to centralise all instruments of production in the 
hands of the state, i. e., of the proletariat organised as the ruling class ; and to 
increase the total of productive forces as rapidly as possible. 

Of course, in the beginning, this cannot be effected except by means of des- 
potic inroads on the rights of property, and on the conditions of bourgeois 
production ; by means of measures, therefore, which appear economically in- 
sufficient and untenable, but which. In the course of the movement, outstrip 
themselves, necessitate further inroads upon the old social order, and are 
unavoidable as a means of entirely revolutionising the mode of production. 

These measures will of course be different in different countries. 

Nevertheless in the most advanced countries, the following will be pretty 
generally applicable. 

1. Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public 

2. A heavy progressive or graduated income tax. 

3. Abolition of all right of inheritance. 

4. Confiscation of the property of all emigrants and rebels. 

5. Centralisation of credit in the hands of the state, by means of a national 
bank with state capital and an exclusive monopoly. 

6. Centralisation of the means of communication and transport in the hands 
of the state. 

7. Extension of factories and instruments of production owned by the state; 
the bringing into cultivation of waste lands, and the improvement of the soil 
generally in accordance with a common plan. 

8. Equal obligation of all to work. Establishment of industrial armies, 
especially for agriculture. 

9. Combination of agriculture with manufacturing industries; gradual aboli- 
tion "of the distinction between town and country, by a more equable distribu- 
tion of the population over the country. 

10. Free education for all children in public schools. Abolition of child fac- 
tory labour in its present form. Combination of education with industrial 
production, etc. 

When, in the course of development, class distinctions have disappeared, 
and all production has been concentrated in the hands of a vast association 
of the whole nation, the public power will lose its political character. Political 
power, properly so called, is merely the organised power of one class for 
oppressing another. If the proletariat during its contest with the bourgeoisie 
is compelled, by the force of circumstances, to organise itself as a class ; if, by 
means of a revolution, it makes itself the ruling, and, as such sweeps 
away by force the old conditions of production, then it will, along with these 
conditions, have swept away the conditions for the existence of class antago- 
nisms, and of classes generally, and will thereby have abolished its own suprem- 
acy as a class. 


In place of the old bourgeois society, with its classes and class antagonisms, 
we shall have an association, in which the free development of each is the 
condition for the free development of all. 

III. Socialist and Communist Literatuee 


a. Feudal Socialism 

Owing to their historical position, it became the vocation of the aristocracies 
of France and England to write pamphlets against modern bourgeois society. 
In the French revolution of July, 1830,'" and in the English reform agitation, 
these aristocracies again succumbed to the hateful upstart. Thenceforth, a 
serious political struggle was altogether out of the question. A literary battle 
alone remained possible. But even in the domain of literature the old cries 
of the restoration period -" had become impossible. 

In order to arouse sympathy, the aristocracy was obliged to lose sight, ap- 
parently, of its own interests, and to formulate its indictment against the 
bourgeoisie in the interest of the exjiloited working class alone. Thus the 
aristocracy took its revenge by singing lampoons against its new master, and 
whispering in his ears sinister prophecies of coming catastrophe. 

In this way arose Feudal Socialism : Half lamentation, half lampoon ; half 
echo of the past, half menace of the future; at times, by its bitter, witty and 
incisive criticism, striking the bourgeoisie to the very heart's core, but always 
ludicrous in its effect through total incapacity to comprehend the march of 
modern history. 

The aristocracy, in order to rally the people to them, waved the proletarian 
alms-bag in front for a banner. Bvit the people, as often as it joined them, 
saw on their hindquarters the old feudal coats of arms, and deserted with 
loud and irreverent laughter. 

One section of the French Legitimists," and "Young England," '^ exhibited this 

In pointing out that their mode of exploitation was different from that of 
the bourgeoisie, the feudalists forget that they exploited under circumstances 
and conditions that were quite different, and that are now antiquated. In 
showing that, under their rule, the modern proletariat never existed, they forget 
that the modern bourgeoisie is the necessary offspring of their own form of 

For the rest, so little do they conceal the reactionary character of their criti- 
cism, that their chief accusation against the bourgeoisie amounts to this, that 
under the bourgeois regime a class is being developed, which is destined to cut 
up root and branch the old order of society. 

What they upbraid the bourgeoisie with is not so much that it creates a 
proletariat, as that it creates a rcvolutiouanj i)rolctariat. 

In political practice, therefore, they join in all coercive measures against 

the working class ; and in ordinary life, despite their high-falutin phrases, 

' they stoop to pick up the golden apples dropped froiu the tree of industry, and 

to barter truth, love, and honour for trafiic in wool, beetroot-sugar, and potato 


As the parson has ever gone hand in hand with the landlord, so has Clerical 
Socialism with Feudal Socialism. 

Nothing is easier than to give Christian asceticism a Socialist tinge. Has 
not Christianity declaimed against private property, against marriage, against 
the state? Has it not preached in the place of these, charity and poverty, 
celibacy and mortification of the flesh, monastic life and Mother Church? 
Christian Socialism is but the holy water with which the priest consecrates 
(he heartburnings of the aristocrat. 

6. Petty Boiirgcoif: Socialism 

The feudal aristocracy was not the only class that was ruined by the bour- 
geoisie, not the only class whose conditions of existence pined and perished in 
the atmosphere of modern bourgeois society. The mediaeval burgesses and the 
small peasant proprietors were the precursors of the modern bourgeoisie. In 
those countries which are but little developed, industrially and commercially, 
these two classes still vegetate side by side with the rising bourgeoisie. 

See footnotes on p. 19. 


In countries where modern civilisntion has become fully developed, a new 
class of petty bourgeois has been formed, fluctnatiu!;- b»>tvveen proletariat and 
bourgeoisie, and ever renewing itself as a supplementary part of bourgeois 
society The individual members of this class, however, are being constantly 
liurled down into the proletariat by the action of competition, and, as modern 
industry develops, they even see the moment approaching when they will com- 
pletely disappear as an independent section of modern society, to be replaced, 
in manufactures, agriculture and commerce, by overlookers, bailifl's and shopmen. 

In countries, like France, where the peasants constitute far more than half 
of the population, it was natural that writers who sided with the proletariat 
against the bourgeoisie, should use, in their criticism of the bourgeois regime, 
the standard of the peasant and petty bourgeois, and from the standpoint of 
these intermediate classes should take up the cudgels for the working class. 
Thus arose petty bourgeois Socialism. Sismondi "* was the head of this school, 
not onlv in France but also in England. 

This 'school of Socialism dissected with great acuteness the contradictions in 
the conditions of modern production. It laid bare the hypocritical apologies 
of economists. It proved, incontiovertibly, the disastrous effects of machinery 
and division of labour; the concentration of capital and land in a few hands; 
overproduction and crises ; it pointed out the inevitable ruin of the petty bour- 
geois and peasant, the misery of the proletariat, the anarchy in production, the 
crying inequalities in the distribution of wealth, the industrial war of extermi- 
nation between nations, the dissolution of old moral bonds, of the old family 
relations, of the old nationalities. 

In its positive aims, however, this form of Socialism aspires either to restoring 
the old means of production and of exchange, and with them the old property 
relations, and the old society, or to cramping the modern means of production 
and of exchange within the framework of the old property relations that have 
been, and were bound to be, exploded by those means. In either case, it i.* 
both I'eactionary and Utopian. 

Its last words are : Corporate guilds for manufacture ; patriarchal relations 
in agriculture. 

Ultimately, when stubborn historical facts had dispersed all intoxicating effects. 
of self-deception, this form of Socialism ended in a miserable fit of the blues. 

c. Gernwn or ''True'" Socialism 

The Socialist and Communist literature of France, a literature that originated 
under the pressure of a bourgeoisie in power, and that was the expression of 
the struggle against this power, was introduced into Germany at a time when the 
bourgeoisie, in that country, had just begun its contest with feudal absolutism. 

German philosophers, would-be philosophers, and men of letters eagerly seized 
on this literature, only forgetting that when these writings immigrated from 
France into Germany, French social conditions had not immigrated along with 
them. In contact with German social conditions, this French literature lost all 
its immediate practical significance, and assumed a purely literary aspect. 
Thus, to the German philosophers of the 18th century, the demands of the 
first French Revolution were nothing more than the demands of "Practical 
Reason" in general, and the utterance of the will of the revolutionary French 
bourgeoisie signified in their eyes the laws of pure will, of will as it was bound 
to be, of true human will generallJ^ 

The work of the German literati consisted solely in bringing the new French 
ideas into liarmony with their ancient philosophical conscience, or rather, in 
annexing the French ideas without deserting their own philosophic point of 

This annexation took place in the same way in which a foreign language iS' 
oppjfopriated, namely by translation. 

It is well known how the monks wrote silly lives of Catholic saints orer the 
manuscripts on which the classical works of ancient heathendom had been 
written. The German literati reversed tliis process with the profane French 
literature. They wrote their philosophical nonsense beneath the French origi- 
nal. For instance, beneath the French criticism of the economic functions of 
money, they wrote "alienation of humanity," and beneath the French criticism 
of the bourgeois state, they wrote, "dethronement of the category of the general," 
and so forth. 

The introduction of these philosophical phrases at the back of the French 
historical criticisms they dubbed "Philosophy of Action," "True Socialism," 

See footnotes on p. 19. 


"German Science of Socialism," "Pliilosopliical Foundation of Socialism," 
and so on. 

The Frencli Socialist and Conimnnist literature was thus completely emascu- 
lated. And, since it ceased in the hands of the German to expi-ess the struggle 
of one class with the other, he felt conscious of having overcome "French one- 
sidedness" and of representing, not true requirements, but the requirements 
of truth ; not the interests of the proletariat, but the interests of human nature, 
of man in general, who belongs to no class, has no reality, who exists only 
in the misty realm of philosophical phantasy. 

This German Socialism, which took its school-boy task so seriously and 
solemnly, and extolled its poor stock-in-trade in such mountebank fashion, 
meanwhile gradually its pedantic innocence. 

The tight of the German and especially of the Prussian bourgeoisie against 
feudal aristocracy and absolute monarchy, in other words, the liberal movement, 
became more earnest. 

By this, the long-wished-for opportunity was offered to "True" Socialism of 
confronting the political movement with the Socialist demands, of hurling the 
traditional anathemas against liberalism, against representative government, 
against bourgeois competition, bourgeois freedom of the press, bourgeois legis- 
lation, bourgeois liberty and equality, and of preaching to the masses that they 
had nothing to gain, and everything to lose, by this bourgeois movement. 
German Socialism forgot, in the nick of time, that the French criticism, whose 
silly echo it was, presupposed the existence of modern bourgeois society, with 
its corresponding economic conditions of existence, and the political constitution 
adapted thereto, the very things whose attainment was the object of the pending 
struggle in Germany. 

To the absolute governments, with their following of parsons, professors, 
country squires and officials, it served as a welcome scarecrow against the 
threatening bourgeoisie. 

It was a sweet finish after the bitter pills of floggings and bullets, with which 
these same governments, just at that time, dosed the risings of the German 
working class. 

While this "True" Socialism thus served the governments as a weapon for 
fighting the German bourgeoisie, it, at the same time, directly represented a 
leactionary interest, the interest of the German Philistines. In Germany the 
petty bourgeois class, a relic of the 16th century, and .since then constantly crop- 
ping up again under various forms, is the real social basis of the existing state 
of things. 

To preserve this class, is to preserve the existing state of things in Germany. 
The industrial and political supremacy of the bourgeoisie threatens it with 
certain destriiction — on the one hand, from the concentration of capital; on the 
other, from the rise of a revolutionary proletariat. "True" Socialism appeared 
to kill these two birds with one stone. It spread like an epidemic. 

The robe of speculative cobwebs, embroidered with fiowers of rhetoric, steeped 
in the dew of sickly sentiment, this transcendental robe in which the German 
Socialists wrapped their sorry "eternal truths," all skin and bone, served to 
increase wonderfully the sale of their goods amongst such a public. 

And on its part, German Socialism recognised, more and more, its own calling 
as the bomba.stic representative of the petty bourgeois Philistine. 

It proclaimed the German nation to be the model nation, and the German 
petty Philistine to be the typical man. To every villainous of this 
model man it gave a hidden, higher, socialistic interpretation, the exact contrary 
of his real character. It went to the extreme length of directly opposing the 
"brutally destructive" tendency of Communism, and of proclaiming its supreme 
and impartial contempt of all class struggles. AVith very few exceptions, all 
the so-called Socialist and Communist publications that now (1847) circulate 
in Germany belong to the domain of this foul and enervating literature. 


A part of the bourgeoisie is desirous of redressing social grievances, in order 
to secure the continued existence of bourgeois society. 

To this section belong economists, philanthropists, humanitarians, improvers 
of the condition of the working class, organi.sers of charity, members of societies 
for the prevention of cruelty to animals, temperance fanatics, hole-and-corner 


reformers of every imaginable kind. This form of Socialism has, moreover, been 
vv-orked out into complete systems. 

We may cite Proudhon's Philosophy of Poverty as an example of this form. 

The socialistic bourgeois want all the advantages of modern social conditions 
without the struggles and dangers necessarily resulting therefrom. They desire 
the existing state of society minus its revolutionary and disintegrating elements. 
Tliey wish for a bourgeoisie without a proletariat. The bourgeoisie naturally 
conceives the world in which it is supreme to be the best ; and bourgeois 
Socialism develops this comfortable conception into various more or less com- 
plete systems. In requiring the proletariat to carry out such a system, and 
thereby to march straightway into the social New Jerusalem, it but requires in 
reality, that the proletariat should remain within the bounds of existing society, 
but should cast away all its hateful ideas concerning the bourgeoisie. 

A second and more practical, but less systematic, form of this Socialism 
sought to depreciate every revolutionary movement in the eyes of the working 
class, by showing that no mere political reform, but only a change in the ma- 
terial conditions of existence, in economic relations, could be of any advantage 
to them. By changes in the material conditions of existence, this form of 
Socialism, however, by no means understands abolition of the bourgeois rela- 
tions of production, an abolition that can be effected only be a revolution, but 
administrative reforms, based on the continued existence of these relations ; 
reforms, therefore, that in no respect affect the relations between capital and 
labour, but, at the best, lessen the cost, and simplify the administrative work 
of bourgeois government. 

Bourgeois Socialism attains adequate expression, when, and only when, it 
becomes a mere figure of speech. 

Free trade : For the benefit of the working class. Protective duties : For the 
benefit of the working class. Prison reform : For the benefit of the working 
class. These are the last words and the only seriously meant words of bourgeois 

It is summed up in the phrase : the bourgeois are bourgeois — for the benefit 
of the working class. 


We do not here refer to that literature which, in every great modern revolu- 
tion, has always given voice to the demands of the proletariat, such as the 
writings of Babeuf ^ and others. 

The first direct attempts of the proletariat to attain its own ends — made iu 
times of universal excitement, when feudal society was being overthrown — 
necessarily failed, owing to the then undeveloped state of the proletariat, as 
well as to the absence of the economic conditions for its emancipation, condi- 
tions that had yet to be produced, and could be produced by the impending 
bourgeois epoch alone. The revolutionary literature that accompanied these 
first movements of the proletariat had necessarily a reactionary character. 
It inculcated universal asceticism and social levelling in its crudest form. 

The Socialist and Communist systems properly so called, those of St. Simon,'" 
Fourier, Owen and others, spring into existence in the early undeveloped period, 
described above, of the struggle between proletariat and bourgeoisie (see Section 
1. Bourgeois and Proletarians). 

The founders of these systems see, indeed, the class antagonisms, as well as 
the action of the decomposing elements in the prevailing form of society. But the 
proletariat, as yet in its infancy, offers to them the spectacle of a class without 
any historical initiative or-any indei^endent political movement. 

Since the development of class antagonism keeps even pace with the develop- 
ment of industry, the economic situation, as such Socialists find it. does not 
as yet offer to them the material conditions for the emancipation of the pro- 
letariat. They therefore search after a new social science, after new social 
laws, that are to create these conditions. 

Historical action is to yield to their personal inventive actions ; historically 
created conditions of emancipation to phantastic ones ; and the gradual, spon- 
taneous class organisation of the proletariat to an oi'ganisation of society 
specially contrived by these inventors. Future history, resolves itself, in their 
eyes, into the propaganda and the practical carrying out of their social plans. 

In the formation of their plans they are conscious of caring chiefiy for the 

See footnotes on p. 19. 

04931 — 40— app., pt. 1 3 


interests of the working class, as being the most suffering class. Only from 
the point of view of being the most suffering class does the proletariat exist 
for them. 

The undeveloped state of the class struggle, as well as their own surroundings, 
causes Socialists of this kind to consider themselves far superior to all class 
antagonisms. They want to improve the condition of every member of society, 
even that of the most favoured. Hence, they habitually appeal to society at 
large, without distinction of class ; nay, by preference, to the ruling class. For 
how can people, when once they understand their system, fail to see in it the 
best possible plan of the best possible state of society? 

Hence, they reject all political, and especially all revolutionary action ; they 
wish to attain their ends by peaceful means, and endeavour, by small experi- 
ments, necessarily doomed to failure, and by the force of example, to pave the 
way for the new social gospel. 

Such phantastic pictures of future society, painted at a time when the prole- 
tariat is still in a very undeveloped state and has but a phantastic conception 
of its own position, correspond with the first instinctive yeai'nings of that class 
for a general reconstruction of society. 

But these Socialist and Communist writings contain also a critical element. 
They attack every principle of existing society. Hence they are full of the most 
valuable materials for the enlightenment of the working class. The practical 
measures proposed in them— such as the abolition of the distinction between town 
and country ; abolition of the family, of private gain and of the wage-systems; the 
proclamation of social harmony ; the conversion of the functions of the state into a 
mere superintendence of production— all these proposals point solely to the disap- 
pearance of class antagonisms which were, at that time, only just cropping up, 
and which, in these publications, are recognised in their earliest, indistinct and 
undefined forms only. These proposals, therefore, are of a purely Utopian 

The signficance of Critical-Utopian Socialism and Communism bears an inverse 
relation to historical development. In proportion as the modern class struggle 
develops and takes definite shape, this phantastic standing apart from the contest, 
these phantastic attacks on it, lose all practical value and all theoretical justi- 
fication. Therefore, although the originators of these systems were, in many 
respects, revolutionary, their disciples have, in every case, formed mere reaction- 
ary sects. They hold fast by the original views of their masters, in opposition 
to the progressive historical development of the proletariat. They, therefore, 
endeavour, and that consistently, to deaden the class straggle and to reconcile the 
class antagonisms. They still dream of experimental realisation of their .social 
Utopias, of founding isolated phalanst^res, of establishing "Home Colonies," or 
setting up a "Little Icaria" ^ — pocket editions of the New Jerusalem — and to 
realise all these castles in the air, they are compelled to appeal to the feelings 
and purses of the bourgeois. By degrees they sink into the category of the 
reactionary conservative Socialists depicted above, differing from these only by 
more systematic pedantry, and by their fanatical and superstitious belief in the 
miraculous effects of their social science. 

They, therefore, violently oppose all political action on the part of the working 
class; such action, according to them, can only result from blind unbelief in the 
new gospel. 

The Owenites in England, and the Fourierists in France, respectively, oppose 
the Chartists '" and the Udformistes. 

IV. Position of the Communists in Relation to the Various Existing 

Opposition Parties 

Section II has made clear the relations of the Communists to the existing 
working class parties, such as the Chartists in England and the Agrarian 
Reformers in America. "" 

The Conununists fight for the attainment of the immediate aims, for the 
enforcement of the momentary interests of the working class ; but in the move- 
ment of the present, they also represent and take care of the future of that move- 
ment. In France the Communist ally themselves with the Social-Democrats,'* 
against the conservative and radical bourgeoisie, reserving, however, the right to 
take up a critical position in regard to phrases and illusions traditionally handed 
down from the great Revolution. 

See footnotes on p. 19. 



In Switzerland they support the Radicals, without losing sight of the fact that 
this party consists of antagonistic elements, partly of Democratic Socialists, in 
the French sense, partly of radical bourgeois. 

In Poland (hey support the party that insists on an agrarian revolution as the 
prime condition for national emancipation, that party which formented the 
insurrection of Cracow in 1846. 

In Germany they fight with the bourgeoisie whenever it acts in a revolutionary 
way, against the absolutely monarchy, the feudal squirearchy, and the petty 

But they never cease, for a single instant, to instil into the working class the 
clearest possible recognition of the hostile antagonism between bourgeoisie and 
proletariat, in order that the German workers may straightway use, as so many 
weapons against the bourgeoisie, the social and political conditions that the 
bourgeoisie must necessarily introduce along with its supremacy, and in order 
that, after the fall of the reactionary classes in Germaiiy, the fight against the 
bourgeoisie itself may immediately begin. 

The Communists turn their attention chiefly to Germany, because that country 
is on the eve of a bourgeois revolution that is bound to be carried out under more 
advanced conditions of European civilisation and with a much more developed 
proletariat than what exisited in England in the 17th and in France in the 18th 
century, and because the bourgeois revolution in Germany will be but the prelude 
to an immediately following proletarian revolution. 

In short, the Communists everywhere support every revolutionary movement 
against the existing social and political order of things. 

In all these movements they bring to the front, as the leading question in each 
case, the property question, no matter what its degree of development at the time. 

Finally, they labour everywhere for the union and agreement of the democratic 
parties of all countries. 

The Communists disdain to conceal their views and aims. They openly declare 
that their ends can be attained only by the forcible overthrow of all existing; 
social conditions. Let the ruling classes tremble at a Communist revolution. 
The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. 

Workingmen of all countries, unite ! 


(All unsigned notes are these made by Engcls to the English edition of 1888 ; all others were 
prepared by the editor and are so marked. Where it was found necessary to enlarge upon 
Engels' notes, the additions appear in brackets.) 

1. King Louis Philippe was deposed and a republic proclaimed as result of the revolution 
in Paris, February 22-24, 1S4S. — Ed. 

2. The rising of the Parisian workers. June 2.3-27, 1848. The insurrection was suppressed 
by General Cavaignac with great slaughter. — Ed. 

.3. Pierre .Joseph Proudhon (1809-1865). — French publicist and political economist ; leading 
exponent of petty-bourgeois Socialism. — Ed. 

4. Lassalle [Ferdinand Lassalle, 1825-1864] always acknowledged himself to us personally 
to be a disciple of Marx and, as such, stood on the ground of the Manifesto. But in his public 
agitation, 1862-64, he did not go beyond demanding co-operative workshops supported by 
state credit. 

5. The Russian version published at Geneva in 1882 was made by Plekhanov, not by Vera 
Zasulich. Bakuuin's translation appeared in 1870. — Ed. 

6. The followers of Robert Owen (177] -1858), leading English Utopian Socialist. He 
envisioned a collective economic and social life organised in small communist communes, where 
property would be owned in commou. — Ed. 

7. The followers of Francois Charles Fourier (1772-18.37), leading French Utopian Socialist, 
Who urged a system of colonies on a socialist plan. His criticism of bourgeois society was 
recognised as basic both by Marx and Engels. — Ed. 

8. Etienne Cabet (1788-1856). — A French Utopian, exiled to England for his participation 
in the July Revolution of 18.30. In his book, Voyage en Icarie, he pictures life in a Communist 
society.- — Ed. 

9. Wilhelm Weitling (1808-1871). — A German Utopian Socialist who took part in the 
revolutionary movement of 1848 and exerted great influence among the German worker.s. He 
came to America where he carried on socialist agitation among German worker.s. — Ed. 

10. The Co7idition of the Workinff Class in England in Wi/i/hy Friedrich Engels, translated 
by Florence K. Wischnewetsky, who later assumed her maiden name of Florence Kelley and wag 
a well-known social worker in America. — Ed. 

11. Metternich (1773-18.59). — Chancellor of the Austrian empire and acknowledged leader 
of the European reaction. Guizot (1787-1874) was the French intellectual protagonist of high 
finance and of the industrial bourgeoisie and the irreconcilable foe of the proletariat. The 
French Radicals, Marrast (1802-1852), Carnot (1801-1888), and Marie (1795-1870) waged 
polemic warfare against the Socialists and Communists. — Ed. 

12. By bourgeoisie is meant the class of modern capitalists, owners of the means of social 
production and emploj'ers of wage-labour ; by proletariat, the class of modern wage-labourers 
who, having no means of production of their own, are reduced to selling their labour power 
m order to live. 

13. That is, aU written history. In 1837, the pre-history of society, the social organisation 
existing previous to recorded history, was all but unknown. Since then Haxthausen [August 

Footnotes continued on p. 20. 



von, 1792-1866] discovered common ownership of land in Russia, Maurer [Georg Ludwig vonj 
proved it to be tlie social foundation from which all Teutonic races started in history, and, 
by and by, village communities were found to be, or to have been, the primitive form of society 
everywhere from India to Ireland. The inner organisation of this primitive communistic 
society was laid bare, in its typical form, by Morgan's [Lewis H., 1818-1881] crowning dis- 
covery of the true nature of the gens and its relation to the tribe. With the dissolution of 
these primaeval communities, society begins to be differentiated into separate and finally 
antagonistic classes. I have attempted to retrace this process of dissolution in The Origin 
of the Family, Private ProjKrtii and the State. 

14. Guild-master, that is a full member of a guild, a master within, not a head of a guild. 

15. Chartered burghers were freemen who had been admitted to the privileges of a chartered 
borough thus possessing full political rights. — Ed. 

16. Craft guilds, made up of exclusive and privileged groups of artisans were, during the 
feudal period, granted monopoly rights to markets by municipal authorities. The guilds 
imposed minute regulations on their members controlling such matters as working hours, 
wages, prices, tools and the hiring of workers. — Ed. 

17. "Commune" was the name taken in France by the nascent towns even before they had 
conyuered from their feudal lords and masters local self-government and political rights as 
the 'Third Estate." Generally speaking, for the economic development of t'le bourgeoisie, 
England is here taken as the typical country, for its political development. Prance. 

18. The lO-IIour Bill, for which the English workers had beeu fighting for 30 years, was 
made a law in 1847. — Ed 

19. In July, 1830, the Parisians rose in revolt against Charles X. The elder branch of the 
Bourbiin faniily was driven out, and Louis Philippe, of the younger or Orleans branch, became 
••King of the French." — Ed. 

20. Not the English Restoration, 1660 to 1689, but the French Restoration. 1814 to 1830. 

21. The French legitimists favoured the claims of the elder branch of the Bourbon family, 
fts against the Orlcanists, the younger branch. — Ed. 

22. "Young England" included a group of philanthropic tories and youthful sprigs of the 
British and Irish aristocracy, who strongly opposed industrial capitalism and wished to restore 
feudalism. — Ed. 

23. This applies chiefly to Germany where the landed aristocracy and squirearchy have large 
portions of their estates cultivated for their own account by stewards, aiid are, moreover, 
extensive beetroot-sugar manufacturers and distillers of potato spirits. The wealthier British 
aristocrats are. as yet, rather above that : but they, too, know how to make up for declining 
rents by hnding their names to floaters of more or less shady joint-stock companies. 

24. Jean Tharles Leonard (Simonde) Sismondi (1773-1842). — French historian and 
economist.- — Ed. 

25. Francois Noel Babeuf (1764-1797). — A radical republican (Jacobin) in the Great French 
Revolution who was guillotined for plotting a revolution aiming at the overthrow of the 
bourgeois state and the creation of a Communist state. — Ed. 

26. Claude Henri de Rouvroy Saint-Simon (1760-1825). — French Utopian Socialist who saw 
the labour question as the prime social question of the future and proposed as a solution the 
organisation of production by "association." — Ed. 

27. Phalan.sicres were socialist colonies on the plan of Charles Fourier ; Icaria was the 
name given by Cabet to his Utopia and, later on, to his American Communist colony. 

28. Chartism lasted as a more or less organised radical political movement of the British 
workers from 1837 to 1848. The People's Charier, for which the Chartists fought, demanded 
an immediate improvement in the workers' conditions as well as legislative reforms. — Ed. 

29. Reference is made to the leaders of "Young America" who, during the struggle of the 
New York farmers against high rents, demanded the nationalisation of the land and limitation 
of farms to 160 acres. After a few paltry reforms had been obtained in the field of agrarian 
legislation, tl e movement petered out. — Ed. 

HO. The party then represented in Parliament by Ledru-Rollin, in literature by Louis Blanc 
[1811-1882], in the daily press by the Reforms. The name of Social-Democracy signifies, with 
these its inventors, a section of the Democratic or Republican Party more or less tinged with 

Exhibit No. 2 

[Source : The Communist, a magazine of the theory and practice of Marxism-Leninism, 
published monthly by the Communist Party of the United States of America. Decem- 
ber, 1933, Vol. XII, No. 12, pages 1169-1178] 

The Communist Manifesto — A Programmatic Document of the Dictatorship 

OF the Proletarlvt ^ 

By O. Kuusinen 

The Communist Manifesto is the great charter of the international Communist 

Eight.y-five years ago the Communist Manifesto enunciated for the first time 
in the form of a complete theoretical and practical program, the Marxian world 
outlook — dialectic materialism, the teaching on the class struggle, on the world- 
wide historical role of the proletariat and of its Communist vanguard. It pointed 
the way to the victory of the proletariat over the bourgeoisie and the transition 
from capitalism to a Communist society. It charted the basic programmatic 
demands and the main lines of strategy and tactics of the Communist Party. 

^ Translated from The Bolshevik (Politico-Economic Fortnightlv Organ of the Com- 
munist Party of the Soviet Union), Issue No. 6 of March 31st, 1933. 


This was a mighty revolutionary call to struggle, which has lost none of its 
compelling rcYOlutionary force even today. Millions of woikers of all countries 
derived from this Manifesto the very force which awakened in them the revolu- 
tionary class consciousness. New millions will read it and study it in order 
that they may unite, pursuant to its call, for revolutionary class struggle. His- 
tory from the time of the appearance of the Communist Manifesto has brilliantly 
confirmed the firm theses of ]\Iarx. And even now the Manifesto stands im- 
mutably, like an unfailing beacon, as a living, and in its main lines actual, pro- 
gram of the international Communist movement. Its historical sequel is the 
program of the Communist International. 


Wherein lies the inexhaustible revolutionary strength of the Communist 

We quote from the Manifesto itself : 

"The theories of the Communists are not in any way based upon ideas 
or principles discovered or established by this or that universal reformer. 

"They serve merely to express in general terms the concrete circumstances 
of an actually existing class struggle, of a historical movement that is going 
on under our very eyes. The abolition of pre-existent property relations is 
not a process exclusively characteristic of Communism." 

We quote further : 

"It is customary to speak of ideas which revolutionize a whole society. 
This is only another way of saying that the elements of a new society have 
formed within the old one ; that the break-up of the old ideas has kept pace 
with the break-up of the old social relations." 

These words reveal the secret of the birth and vitality of the Communist 
Manifesto itself. The teaching of Marx, already revealed in the Manifesto in 
its main lines, was itself a product of the antagonistic productive relations of 
capitalist society ; was a realization of the position of the proletariat and its his- 
toric mission and "a general expression of actual relations within the existing 
class struggle''. 

The flaming words of each and every line of the Communist Manifesto clearly 
indicate that the system of ideas contained in the Mayiifesto was born in the 
fire of revolutionary struggle. It was growing up, in the first place, in the 
incandescent atmosphere of the European revolutionary class battles of the 
forties of last century and, in the second place, directly out of the ideological 
and practical struggle which Marx and Engels led in the years 1843-1847. 

In their ideological struggle Marx and Engels based themselves on the best 
that the nineteenth century had created. As Lenin and Engels pointed out, the 
three sources and component parts of Marxism were: Classical German philoso- 
phy, classical English political economy, and French socialism along with the 
French revolutionary teachings in general. 

The greatest exponents of these three ideological currents were Hegel, Ricardo 
and the great Utopians. In his own realm each of them built up a complete 
thoretical system, which Vv^as not capable of further development along the lines 
of its original basic principles. Meanwhile Marx actually continued, completed 
and merged into one solid system these ideological currents. That was possible 
only by means of a critical recreation of their underlying principles. Marx 
carried furtlier Hegel's dialectics, first having turned it upside down, tliat is 
formulating the dialetic development of material reality in place of the eternal 
self-propulsion of a mystical "idea." Marx carried further Adam Smith's and 
Ricardo's theory of value, revealing at the same time the fetishism of economic 
categories, and thus bringing them down from the realm of "eternal laws of 
nature", as they were pictured by the bourgeois economists, to a mere expression 
of social production relations, which are historically conditioned and transitory. 
In the same manner Marx carried further the socialism of St. Simon, Fourier, 
and Robert Owen, first taking it down from the sphere of Utopian ideas and 
'''brain product" projects of a new society, to the solid ground of historic reality 
as an expression and program of the class struggle of the proletariat. 

Thus were demolished the "eternal ideas" of all these three basic domains 
of ideology, behind which were incarcerated as behind bars, the living elements 
of a new world outlook. 

Along with this struggle it was necessary to carry on another ideological 
struggle in all the three domains. There was a "criticism of criticism", /. e.. 


in the first place a criticism of the left Hegelians, who were the critics of 
Hegel, such as Bruno Bauer, Max Stirner, etc., and also a criticism of the 
major shortcomings of Feuerbachian materialism; in the second place it was 
a critism of the petty bourgeois critics of classic political economy, of the 
economic theories of Proudhon, Sismondi, and others; and in the third place 
it was a criticism of the petty socialist critics of the great Utopians, the English 
and the Germnu ("true") socialists. 

Only now are we in a position to restore the full picture of that fierce 
ideological struggle, which jMarx and Engels waged during the decisive period 
of the formation of the Marxian system. This became po.ssible after such 
precious manuscripts as the Philosophical Economic Essays by Marx and the 
full edition of the German Idcoloyji by Marx and Engels, hitherto concealed by 
the leaders of the German Social-Democracy, became public property once again. 

What were the results of the ideological stri;ggle of Marx and Engels? 

The Marxian critique of philosophy and of historiography gave rise to dia- 
lectical materialism and particularly to the materialist conception of the history 
of mankind. 

The critique of political economy gave rise to the Marxian theory of surplus 
value and to all the ensuing laws of the development of contradictions within 
capitalism and of its resulting breakdown. All these laws are treated sys- 
tematically and in detail in Capital. 

The critique of Utopian socialism gave rise to Marxian Communism, which 
firmly links up the scientific conception of the dialectic transition from capital- 
ism to socialism and Communism with the class struggle and with the consequent 
revolutionary practice of "'changing the face of the world". From Utopian 
socialism there emerged INIarxian Communism, which changes science into revolu- 
tionary politics, and that politics into science. 

Lenin, who miderstood the theory of Marx more deeply than anyone else, 
emphasized with particular vigor that that theory combines strict scientific 
properties of the highest type (it being the culmination of social science) 
with revolutionary properties ; that their synthesis is not accidental ; that it is 
not a result of the author's combining in his personality . the qualities of a 
scientist and a revolutionary ; but that this synthesis is contained within the 
theory innately and indivisibly. 

In concise form the Communist Manifesto dwells upon many vast domains 
of the teachings of Marx. First of all the Manifesto affords a brilliantly 
clear miderstanding of the materialistic conception of history. The entire history 
of maidvind from the inception of class society till the appearance of the 
socialist society unfolds before the reader from a uniform scientific ix)int of 
view, as a history of the struggle of classes which develops on the basis of 
changing modes of production and of inner contradictions inherent in the pro- 
duction relations which are based on exploitation. 

Two important component parts of the Marxian teachings find little expres- 
sion in the Communist Manifesto. 

First — his philosophical theory of cognition (gnoseology). Of course, the 
materialistic-philosophical conception of the sources and principles of knowledge 
forms the very base of all the theses of the Manifesto, but that conception is 
not treated in the Manifesto in a direct manner. It is formi;lated in part in 
the earlier philosophical works of INIarx and Engels {The Hohi Family, The 
Oerman Ideology) partly in the later works of Engels {Anti-Duehring, The 
Dialectics of Nature, and Ludivig FeuerMch) and also in Lenin's Materialism, 
and Enipirio-Criticism. 

Second — the mature form of the Marxian theory of surplus value is not yet 
contained in the Communist Manifesto. However, the most important postu- 
lates which he used in subsequently developing his theory of surplus value are 
already to be found in there. They are : 

1. That the capitalist system is a system of wage slavery ; the workers "are 
the slaves of the bourgeois class", "who can exist only as long as they find 
work, and who can find work only as long as their labor increases capital". 

2. " . . . These laborers, who must sell themselves piecemeal, are a com- 
modity, like every other article of commerce ..." is stated in the Cotnynnnist 
Manifesto. According to a later formulation of Marx, workers sell their labor 
power as a commodity, but it also means that they sell "their own skin". For 
the commodity labor power exists only "in the person of the laborer", "only 
as the faculty of a living individual" (Capital). 

3. According to the Communist Manifesto "the cost of production of a worker 
amounts to little more than the cost of the means of subsistence he requires for 
his upkeep and for the propagation of his race". 


4. The gituation of the workers luirter capitalism is becoming increasingly 
worse, as the productivity of their labor increases ; this worsening manifests itself 
partly in a lowered wage or a lengthened working day, partly in an increased 
intensification of labor, oppression at work, etc. 

Marx, it is true, still employs in the Communist Manifesto the old and incorrect 
terra, "the price of labor" (in place of, "value and price of labor pov.'er") not at 
all, however, in the bourgeois meaning, according to which the term implies that 
the worker receives full payment (is fully compensated) for the labor he per- 
forms. No. according to the Communist Manifesto, the workers selling them- 
selves piecemeal, get in the form of wages much less than the sum total of values 
Avliich their labor creat-es. The growth of capital is accomplished in no other 
way than by exploitation. But the Manifesto does not contain the clear explana- 
tion, subsequently developed by Marx, of this exploitation, by way of distinction 
l,etween "necessary labor" and "surplus labor" (or "unpaid labor"), which creates 
surplus value. Only these theoretically highly important definitions made pos- 
sible a clear and consistent analysis of the capitalist process of production, but 
they changed in no way the basic conception formulated in the Communist Mani- 
festo. On the contrary, that conception was only strengthened and deepened 
in all its essential parts. 

Afterwards, in a number of other basic questions, Marx fundamentally com- 
pleted and developed the theses expounded in the Communist Manifesto, particu- 
larlv the problem of the dietatorship of tlie proletariat. Aside from that, the 
remarks contained in Section IV of the Communist Manifesto about the position 
of the Communists in relation to the various existing opposition parties, as it was 
pointed out by Marx and Engels themselves already in 1872, are, of course, histori- 
cally antiquated in their concrete form, although "fundamentally they are correct 
to this day". 

The subsequent development of the ideas proclaimed for the first time in the 
Communist Manifesto and the evolution of Marxism into Mar.Tism-Leninism 
cannot be understood without taking into consideration the basic character of 
the new epoch in particular and especially the greatest triumph of these ideals : 
their aceomplislihnient in practice, the building of socialism on one-sixth of the 
face of the earth. 

A new edition of the Communist Manifesto entitles the reader to expect at a most elementary characterization of the main phases of this development 
and of the actual realization of ^larxism in our own time. Therefore, we will 
discuss the matter briefly in the following lines, starting with the basic postulates 
of the Communist Manifesto and. alongside with it, subjecting to a critical 
analysis the main principles of social-democracy. 


The Communist Manifesto states that "the bourgeoisie has centralized the 
means of production and has concentrated property in few hands". However, 
this capitalist centralization and concentration, as well a.^ the "constant changes 
of modes of production" were destined to attain truly gigantic proportions. Sub- 
sequently Marx gave in his main work a thorough analysis of the accumulation 
of capital and of the general law governing the same. 

But neither Marx nor Engels lived to the time of the last phase of capitalism, 
during which the concentration of production and the centralization of capital 
assumed the form of cartels and of trustification of entire ma.ior branches of pro- 
duction ; when the .sway of free competition and of industrial capital turned into 
the domination of the monopolistie finance capital, which domination, however, 
Is imable to eliminate free competition. 

In the past, according to the Comniuni.9t 'Manifesto, "the cheap prices of com- 
modities were the heavy artillery with which the bourgeoisie battered down all 
Chinese walls". At present, however, monopoly prices are becoming the heavy 
artillery of the large scale bourgeoisie in its fight for surplus value the world 

In the past "the need of a constantly expanding market for its products drove 
the bourgeoisie over the whole surface of the globe". At present the decisive 
role in this chase is relegated to finance capital. There has begun the division of 
the world among the international trusts into spheres of influence. 

While in the past the bourgeoisie of the most developed countries already ex- 
ploited many a "barbarian nation", pushing them on at the same time along the 
path of "so-called civilization", now, however, the entire territory of the globe is 


divided up among the great powers and the practice of pitiless exploitation and 
enslavement of colonial and semi-colonial peoples has assumed the form of a 
system. There has been launched a fierce struggle for the redivisiou of the 
already divided world. 

This very division of the whole world, which ended on the threshold of the 
new century, is, along with the stormy development of monopolistic capital, 
a turning point to a new epoch — the epoch of imperialism. 

As a whole, capitalism, which developed until then along an ascending line 
of progress, began to show signs of decay. Lenin defined this last phase of 
capitalism as the phase of decayvng and dying capitalism : not, however, in the 
sense that capitalism is dying off automatically but in the sense of "a transition 
of capitalism into socialism". "Monopoly, growing out of capitalism, already 
represents the dying of capitalism — the beginning of its transition into social- 
ism. In the first place — the gigantic socialization of labor by imperialism 
. . . denotes the very same thing. In the second place — imperialism intensifies 
the contradictions of capitalism to the highest degree and carries them to a 
limit beyond which revolution begin.s". (Stalin) 

But the Second International did not see the matter in this light. It 
embarked in theory, as well as in practice, on the path of opportunistic adap- 
tation to the conditions and requirements of decaying capitalism, of imperi- 

Marx and Engels waged a constant straggle against opportunism, which 
already began to raise its head during their lifetime not only among the 
socialists of the Anglo-Saxon countries, but even among the leaders of the 
German Social-Democracy. The latter were "farsighted" enough to conceal 
from the public (up till 1932!) the letters of Marx and Engels, in which their 
opportunistic tendencies were subjected to criticism.^ 

Engels, full of indignation at the opportunism of the German Social- 
Democracy, wrote to Wilhelm Liebknecht the following, as early as 1885 : 

"Is it possible that the chapter [in the Communist Manifesto — K.] on 
German or true socialism is destined to become the burning question again 
now after 40 years?" 

And that is exactly what happened. To the extent that the development of 
a privileged aristocracy of labor in the epocli of imperialism tended to create 
a considerable social base for opportunism, to that extent the process of social 
democracy turning bourgeois continued in full swing. 

Then began the reckless revision of Marxism, and of the basic theses of 
the CotuDiunist Manifesto in particular. 

"The theory of pauperization is not true", was the cry of the social-democrats 
identifying the position of the broad masses of proletarians with that of its 
privileged strata. The Communist Manifesto if. wrong when it states that the 
worker is only "an appendage of the machine", who is "daily and hourly 
enslaved by the machine, by the overseer, and, above all, by the individual 
bourgeois manufacturer himself". No, the worker of today is rather a free 
partner of the industrialist. It is not true that "the worker has nothing to lose 
but his chains", for the contemporary worker may even acquire a few shares of 
stock, etc. 

The imperialist bourgeoisie was interested in concocting petty-bourgeois illu- 
sions to befuddle the workers and the social-democratic criers from the top 
of the labor aristocracy were zealously carrying out the order. At first a 
frontal attack against the Marxian theory was launched by the Bernsteinians 
and by other revisionists ; then Kautsky and other "opponents of revisionism" 
continued the attack in roundabout hidden ways by means of distorting, weak- 
ening and emasculating Marxism in the name of its "orthodox interpretation". 

The aristocracy of labor, bribed and corrupted by the imperialistic bour- 
geoisie, was interested, not in preparing for the revolution, but in the 
prosperity of capitalist production. 

That is why the social-democratic theoreticians got busy first of all to 
undermine the Marxian theory of the collapse of capitalism, and in particular 
the basic thesis, as stated in the Communist Manifesto about "the revolt of 
modern productive forces against modern conditions of production, against the 

^Tvvo volumes of these letters, hitherto concealed by the social-democratic leaders, are 
now published by the Marx-Engels-Lenin Institute. 


property relations that are the conditions for the existence of the bourgeoisie 
and of its rule". 

The revolutionary theory of the unavoidable sharpening of the basic contra- 
diction of capitalism was transformed into its direct antithesis, into an 
apology for capitalism and for every step of the bourgeoisie, as long as it 
could be interpreted as promoting the development of productive forces. 

To impede the development of productive forces is, according to social- 
democratic sophists, a reactionary step from the Marxian point of view, therefore, 
the labor movement must refrain from any form of struggle which would be 
likely to hamper the capitalistic industrial development. The fact that produc- 
tion in certain industries is still capable of development within the framework 
of capitalism, is supposed to prove according to Marx, that the time for social- 
ism is still far off, etc. There was systematically spread the fatalistic viewpoint, 
that the development of productive forces will bring about socialism of itself 
some time in the distant future, not, of course, as a result of the breakdown 
of capitalism, and of a violent revolution, but as a result of a gradual and 
peaceful "growing into" socialism. 

Thus was Marxism turned into labor liberalism under cover of pseudo-Marxian 
phraseology. The upper crust of the Second International remained socialist 
in words, bourgeois in deeds. 

The practice of social-democracy was adapting itself even more fully and more 
rapidly than its theory to the requirements of the imperialistic bourgeoisie. 
The dominant political line of class collaboration of the pre-war social-democ- 
racy in the leading capitalist countries manifested itself in the dullest parlia- 
mentary cretinism and trade-union reformism (mainly in negotiations with 
employers regardng wage scales). Parliament was to them the center of the 
universe. Legal parliamentary democracy — their road to bliss. Parliamentary 
diplomacy — their wisdom and virtue. 

Everything said in the Communist Manifesto about the "conservative or 
bourgeois socialism" and most of what is said there about the "German or 'true' 
socialism"— all that strikes squarely in the face of the leading spirits of the 
Second International, particularly during the period immediately preceding the 
World War. 

A consistent struggle against this opportunism and bourgeois socialism be- 
came now the burning issue for all true Marxists within the international labor 
movement and in every individual country. The task of solving this problem 
was undertaken by Lenin — by Bolshevism. The struggle of Bolshevism against 
Menshevism and against the Second International was from its very beginning a 
struggle for the restoration of the true revolutionary Marxism both in theory 
and in practice. It was a constant battle against various and sundry falsifiers 
of Marxism. At the same time it signified a further development of Marxism 
in accordance with the conditions of the new epoch. 

While the ringleaders of the Second International were covering up the con- 
tradictions of imperialism, Lenin was exposing those contradictions. He proved 
the inevitable sharpening of the three basic contradictions of capitalsm in the 
epoch of imperialism, namely: (a) between capital and labor, (b) between a 
handful of exploiting nations and an overwhelming majority of exploited popu- 
lations of colonial and dependent countries, (c) between various imperialist 
powers and financial groups. 

While the ringleaders of the Second International were busy painting the per- 
spective of a uniform evolution of capitalism, Lenin demonstrated the accelera- 
tion of its uneven development in the epoch of imperialism. 

This uneven development is not an increase of differences in the level of 
development of various capitalist countries. No, this inequality tends to di- 
minish on the basis of such an eqtialization, as was shown by Comrade Stalin, 
and the intensification of the action of such an unevenness of development in 
the period of imperialism is quite possible. This unevenness does not consist 
in "some countries overtaking others and then surpassing them economically 
in due course, in an evolutionary way, so to say" as was the rule in the period 
of pre-monopoly capital. No, 

". . . the law of the unevenness of development in the period of imperial- 
ism denotes a spasmodic development of some countries with relation to 
others ; a rapid displacement from the world markets of some countries by 
others; periodic redivisions of the already divided world by means of mili- 
tary clashes and military catastrophies ; a. deepening and sharpening of 


conflicts in the camp of imperialism ; a weakening of the front of the world 
capitalism with a consequent possibility of breaking through that front 
by proletarians of individnal countries and the possibility of the victory of 
socialism in individtial countries." (Stalin) 

(To be continued) 

Exhibit No. 3 

[Somce : The Communist, a magazine of the tlieory and practice of Marxism-Leninism, 
published monthly by the Communist Party of the United States of America. February, 
1934, Vol. XIII, No. 2, pages 193-206] 

The Communist Manifesto — A Progeammatic Docxtment of the Dictatorship 

OF the Peoletakiat 

(By O. Kuusinen) 
(Continued from December issue) 

The problem of the attitude to imperialism, with the steadily growing tenseness 
of the international situation, forced itself with ever greater persistence as the 
burning question of the day before every workers' party. Lenin gave a very 
clear diagnosis of the positions of the social classes in relation to this question : 

"The proletariat is struggling for the revolutionary overthrow of the im- 
perialist bourgeoisie, while the petty bourgeoisie is struggling for a reformistie 
'perfection' of imperialism, for adapting itself to it, while being subservient 
to it." 

The right social-democrats, such as Cunow, acted as open social-imperialists, 
but, of course, they too made use of pseudo-Marxian sophistry to justify their 
policy. '"Cunow", writes Lenin, "argues clumsily and cynically: Imperialism is 
contemporary capitalism ; but the development of capitalism is both inevitable and 
progressive ; hence imperialism is progressive ; hence, we must cringe before 
imperialism and glorify it." 

Centrists, such as Kautsky, strove particularly to cover up the contradictions 
of imperialism. Imperialism, generally speaking, is not a new phase of capitalism, 
according to Kautsky, but an unreasonable policy of expansion on the part of 
industrial nations. Instead of this imp'jrialistic policy the bourgeoisie could 
carry through with equal and even greater success a different and much wiser 
policy of expansion, "The tendencies of capital to expand," wrote literally, 
"can be realized best of all not by the violent methods of imperialism, but by 
peaceful democracy." 

And he was deceiving the workers with illusions of permanently peaceful "ultra- 

''There tmll he no more crises T, announced the professors of economics, them- 
selves hirelings of the cartels ; and the chorus of social-democratic theoreticians 
would joyously take up the refrain: "Yes, no more; the cartels are in a position 
to eliminate crises". And only the crises themselves were rudely destroying the 
harmony of the soloists and the chorus : the crisis of 1000 in Germany and in 
Russia ; the crisis of 1903 in the United States ; the crisis of 19()7 again in the 
United Stales, and in some other countries. 

Each crisis confirmed the theory of crises of Marx and Lenin. Each crisis was 
a reminder of what had been foretold in the Communist Manifesto: 

"How does the bourgeoisie overcome these crises? On the one hand by the 
compulsory annihilation of a quantity of the productive forces ; on the other, 
by the conquest of new markets and the more thorough exploitation of old 
ones. With what results? The results are that the way is paved for more 
wide-spread and more disastrous crises and that tlie capacity for averting 
such crises is lessened." 

"There will be no more wars!", proclaimed the cabinet ministers who managed 
the affairs of the financial oligarchy; and a chorus of petty bourgeois Kautskyists 
would take up the tune : "Yes, no more ! Finance capital together with the wise 
governments will somehow eliminate the war danger through the 'Peaceful 
Democracy' of a perfected imperialism." 


But wars themselves were destroying without any ceremony this delightful 
harmony: the Spanish-American war of 1898; the Anglo-Boer war of 1899-1902; 
the Russo-Japanese war of 1904-1905; the Balkan wars of 1912-1913; and finally 
the imperialist World War of 1914-1918. 

Each war loudly proclaimed that Kautsky's theory of harmony is nothing more 
than a delusion of the masses, that Lenin is perfectly correct in insisting that 
imperialism leads unavoidably to bandit wars for the purpose of a new redivision 
of colonies and of other spheres of exploitation, to violent clashes among the 
biggest imperialist powers for world hegemony; and that peace agreements be- 
tween imperialist powers are merely respites between wars and preparations for 
new ones. 

The struggle of Bolshevism against international Menshevisra was concentrated 
primarily around three great problems of the international movement, which 
remain to this day in the center of daily struggles : 1. The question of the party. 
2. The attitude towards imperialist war. 8. The dictatorship of the proletariat. 
In the solution of each of these problems Lenin was able to find much direct 
support in the Communist Manifesto. 


The epoch of imperialism is an epoch of open clashes between classes, of 
direct preparations by the working class for the overthrow of the bourgeoisie, 
and of proletarian revolutions. Such an epoch places the working class face to 
face with historic problems of great importance, with problem.s which it cannot 
solve without the leadership of a truly revolutionary Communist party. 

The CmummriHt Manifesto came to life in a period already fraught with revo- 
lutionary class struggles. Already at that time Marx and Engels understood 
the urgent need for a highly class-conscious party, in order that "the proletariat 
may be sufficiently strong to win during the decisive days". They wrote the 
Communist Manifesto as a theoretical and practical "party program". It was 
actually named Tho Manifesto of the Communist Party {Comnmnist Manifesto 
is merely an abbreviation). 

At the same time Marx and Engels were busy organizing the Communist 
Party. For several years they were busy recruiting adherents in France, Bel- 
gium. Germany, and" England, uniting them into party groups, educating and 
instructing them in accordance with the unfolding of events. In 1847, they 
reorganized the international "League of the Just", originally founded by 
German emigres, into the "League of Communists", and took upon themselves 
the task of its political leadership. 

The conscious Conimunists of that time constituted a small group, while 
major revolutionary battles were in the offing. Could the Comnuuiists then 
hope to be able to organize the working class In that short period and to rally 
them around their program to such an extent that the Communist Party should 
be able to supplant major proletarian mass organizations, such as the Chartist 
movement in England? No. The political development of the masses of 
workers was inadequate for such a task. Had the Communists taken such a 
course, they would have merely isolated themselves without having aided the 
development of the revolutionary movement. 

Marx and Engels were absolutely against such a sectarian approach. Their 
line of action consisted of the following: To start by building a unified Com- 
munist Party, led by a single Central Committee, out of these Communist groups 
already organized by them in a few co\ui tries, and out of the local organizations 
of the "Union". The reorganized "League of Communists" was to become that 
Communist Party, which was to be an international party. Each country was 
to be divided into a certain number of districts and all districts of a given 
country were 1o be subordinated to its national center. This party, which 
under the prevailing coiiditlons could everywhere maintain but an illegal exist- 
ence, and which was as yet numerically very weak, was not to endeavor arti- 
ficially to shape in accordance with academically worked out "special prin- 
ciples" those labor mass organizations which were being formed in different 
counti'ies. This v/as the way Marx and Engels approached the problem in 1847: 
the "League of Communists" will not put itself in opposition to other working 
class parties, v.iiich may arise in various forms depending upon the concrete 
circumstances, but will rather direct them forward along the road of revolu- 
tionary class struggle through the work of its members within these parties. 

This first bold attempt to build a Communist Party failed as a result of the 
defeat of the revolutionary movement of 1848-9 and of the ensuing reaction. 


and was pushed to the background for a long time. With the founding of the 
First International (1864) the task was not to organize actual Communist 
parties, but rather "to unite into one great army all the fighting forces of 
Europe and America". This International, therefore, could not base itself 
upon the principles expounded in the Manifesto. It had "to adopt a program 
that v/ould leave the door open to the English trade-iinionists ; to the French, 
Belgian, Italian, Spanish Proudhonists ; and the German Lassalleans" (Engels). 
But during the period of the First International, as well as later, Marx and 
Engels were doing everything possible to educate the socialist parties of the 
various countries in the spirit of uncompromising class struggle as well as in 
the spirit of the Con.nnunist program. Thus, the First International was 
organizationally the great forerunner and prototype of the Communist 

However, the objective conditions immediately after the collapse of the First 
International did not favor the building of Communist parties. On the con- 
trary, there followed a prolonged period of more or less peaceful development, 
when the immediate task called for rather slow organizational and propaganda 
efforts. It is well known that during all these stages of the lai^or movement, 
Marx and Engels conducted a systematic struggle against bourgeois and petty- 
bourgeois influences upon the labor movement, both against the so-called "con- 
servative socialism" and anarchism. But the development of the Western 
European movement, particularly since the founding of the Second Interna- 
tional, while growing broadly, was directed ever more one-sidedly along the 
path of social-democratic parliamentarism. 

With the advent of the epoch of imperialism, problems quite different from 
parliamentary ones began pressing for solution. Large scale revolutionary 
struggles were looming once again, the same as at the end of the forties, hence 
again the possibility and necessity of a genxTine Communist Party. 

The new epoch placed before the proletariat new tasks, namely: 

"The rebuilding of the entire Party work along new revolutionary lines; 
the education of the workers in tlie spirit of revolutionary struggle for 
power ; preparation and consolidation of reserves ; union with proletarians 
of neighboring countries ; establishing of solid and enduring contacts with 
the movements for liberation in the colonies and dependent countries ; etc., 
etc. To think that the forces of the old social-democratic parties, trained in 
the peaceful ways of parliamentarism, will be able to solve all these prob- 
lems is to doom oneself to hopeless despair and to an unavoidable defeat." 

The typical parties of the Second International, of the character of which 
we have already spoken, were poles apart from that type of party which would 
correspond to the revolutionary workers' party conceived by Marx. 

In the first place, they were not the conscious vanguard of the working class. 
The Communist Manifesto, speaking of Communists, presents them as the 
actual vanguard of the proletariat : 

"Thus, in actual practice. Communists form the most resolute and per- 
sistently progressive section of the working class parties of all lands 
whilst, as fur as theory is concerned, being in advance of the general 
mass of the proletariat, they have come to understand the determinants 
of the proletarian movement and how to forsee its course and its gen- 
eral results." 

But the social-democratic parties enjoyed neither of these two advantages. 
There were no lines of demarcation between the party and the class and fre- 
quently not even between the party and the mass movement of the petty 
bourgeoisie. In general, it was not even considered necessary to raise the 
question about these dividing lines, until Lenin raised that issue in the Russian 

The attitude of social-democratic parties to the masses at that time was 
one of "tailism". Even the left social-democrats were completely off the track in 
this respect with their theory of spontaneity, by failing to understand the leading 
role of the party. The entire structure of the Communist Manifesto cannot 
be reconciled with either tailism or sectarianism. Communists must not iso- 
late themselves from the masses, neither must they reduce tliemselves to the 
level of the non-class-conscious masses ; they must rather educate the masses 
and lift them to the level of the vanguard. They must not place themselves 


in opposition to mass movements of the workers; on the contrary, they must 
participate in all these movements, they mnst fight in the front line and must 
guide the movement towards the historical aims of the working class. 

"Communists fight on behalf of the immediate aims and interests of the 
working class, but in the present movement they are also defending the 
future of the movement." 

Such is the setting of the Communist Manifesto. 

In the second place, social-democratic parties v»-ere not the organized van- 
guard of the working class. INIany of these parties were a conglomerate, based 
not on an individual membership, but on a collective one. Instead of a con- 
stant centralized leadership of the party organization by its higher and lower 
organs, there appeared in these parties, just as in a bourgeois state, a deep- 
seated duality ; a rift between the bureaucracy and a passive membership. 
Their main political organization was not the party but its parliamentary 
fraction. Party discipline counted for nothing. 

The "League of Communists", after its reorganization by Marx and Engels, 
was a totally different type of party. In accordance with' the statutes of the 
"League of Communists", signed by Engels in the capacity of secretary, each 
member of the League had to subscribe to the following conditions : "faith in 
the tenents of Communism" ; adherence to the rules and regulations of the 
"League" ; admission by unanimous vote to a lower party unit ; and, aside from 
that, "a revolutionary energy and zeal in propaganda work". And it was 
underscored that, "He who ceases to conform to these conditions is to be ex- 
pelled." In general, on the one hand, these statutes are a prototype of the stat- 
utes of a present-day undergroimd Communist Party, and, on the other hand, the 
prototype of the Statutes of the Communist International. 

In the third place, a typical social-democratic party was not a leading organi- 
zation with respect to trade unions and other proletarian mass organizations. 
Even where the trade unions were collectively afiiliated with the party, they 
were considered independent of it. Neither the party nor the trade unions 
entertained any desire that the party members inside the trade unions should 
make an effort, under the direction of the party, to insure unity of political 
line in the decisions of the trade unions. On the contrary, there prevailed the 
conception of "independence" and "neutrality" of the non-parti.san organizations, 
a conception — "breeding independent parliamentarians and activists of the 
press, torn away from the party ; breeding narrow-minded professionals and 
petty-bourgeoisified co-operators" (Stalin). 

The Commitnist Manifesto contains no directives that might be applied 
straight to the problem of the i-elationship between the party and the trade 
unions, which, as mass organizations, were as yet non-existent at that time. 
There was, howevei-, a mass labor party in England, the Charist movement, 
and Marx assumed then, that similar revolutionary movements of parties may 
appear in other countries, too. To such labor parties are applied the following 
words of the Communist Manifesto: 

"The Communists do not form a separate party conflicting with other 
working-class parties." 

This, however, did not mean that in general the Communists must not form 
their own party. No, this phrase may be correctly understood taking in con- 
sideration the conditions under which the "League of Communists" was working, 
and of which we already spoke at the beginning of this article. This phrase 
means that, in individual countries, the Communists were not suppo.sed to put 
their pai-ty in opposition to such revolutionary working-class parties as the 
Chartist movement, but to enter such mass organizations and to work in their 
ranks as "the most resolute section of the working-class parties, that section 
which pushes forward all others." 

In 1920 Lenin recommended similar tactics, though in different circum- 
stances, to the English Communists with regard to the Labor Party of England, 
at the time when the latter did not yet forliid the Communists to conduct unre- 
strained agitational work in its ranks. It is, however, much more important 
that Lenin insisted from the very beginning of the imperialist epoch upon the 
work of Party members in the ranks of non-Party mass organizations along 
directives from Party organizations in order to bring about the realization 
of a political guidance by the Party of all other forms of organizations of the 
proletariat. Lenin taught that the Party is the highest form of class unity of 


In the fourth place, the social-democratic parties were not the means for 
attaining the Dictatorship of the Proletariat. 

It is stated in the Manifesto that the "immediate ohjective" of a Communist, 
as well as of "all other proletarian parties" (i. e., parties similar to the Chartist 
organization in England) is: 

"Organization of the proletariat on a class basis ; destruction of bourgeois 
supremacy ; conquest of political power by the proletariat." 

The epoch of imperialism made this basic problem a burning issue of the 

day. It was necessary to proceed immediately with the task of training the 

working class for struggle for the dictatorship of the proletariat. But the 

social-democratic parties had turned into a tool for the preservation of the 
dictatorship of the bourgeoisie. 

"Hence the urgent need for a new party, a fighting party, a revolutionary 
party; a party sufficiently daring to lead the proletarians into struggle for 
l^ower ; a party experienced enough to oi'ieutate itself under the complex 
conditions of a revolutionary situation and flexible eno\igh to avoid all 
and sundry pitfalls on the road to its goal." (Stalin) 

Marx took into consideration the lessons of the Paris Commune in dealing 
with the problems of the Party. This found a clear expression in the resolu- 
tion of the London Conference of delegates of the First International (Septem- 
ber, 1871) where it was emphasized that it was necessary "to form the prole- 
tariat into a political party in order to insure the victory of the social revolu- 
tion and of its highest goal — the abolition of classes". Here the idea is 
already given for the teachings of Lenin on the Party as a weapon in the 
hands of the proletariat for consolidating and broadening the dictatorship after 
having wrested power. 

In the fifth place, the parties of the Second International of that period 
did not represent a unity of will. Their doors were wide open for all sorts 
of ideological quacks, priests and political careerists. The very name of the 
party ("Social-Democratic") was utilized for that purpose, a name first adopted 
in Germany despite Marx's strongest objections to it. The program of the 
party and the resolutions of congresses were looked upon as mere propaganda 
literature implying no obligations upon either the leadership or the membership 
of the party. The example afforded by the "League of Communists" was wholly 
forgotten. In line with the traditions of bourgeois liberalism, there prevailed 
in the ranks of the social-democratic party a free competition of the most 
diversified currents of thought, of groups, and of fractions. And they never 
even imagined that it ought to be otherwise until I^enin demanded some- 
thing entirely different — a monolithic party, which "knows how to conduct its 
affairs and is not afraid of difficulties" (Stalin) ; which sets a firm line of 
action in accordance with the changes of the situation and then actually carries 
out that line ; which fights everywhere as an entity for an identical platform ; 
which is capable of mass struggles, is trained for such struggles and can, there- 
fore, maintain an iron discipline within its ranks. 

Was there a practical possibility of creating such a truly revolutionary 
Marxian party under the conditions of the labor movement of those (the pre- 
war) days? Yes, there was, but only along one road. Engels expressed it 
back in 188.5, when he wrote to Wilhelm Liebknecht about the social-democratic 
party of Germany : 

"The petty-bourgeois element within the party is gaining the upper hand 
ever more and more. If this will continue, you may rest assured that there 
will be a split in the ranks of the party." 

A split of the social-democracy — such is the road. There was actually no 
other way ahead under the conditions of those days. The Bolsheivks, under the 
leadersship of Lenin, were not afraid to proceed along that road (in 1903). 
Without its struggle against Menshevism, the Party could not have been trained 
for the solution of the impending historical tasks. And that became possible 
only because Lenin put the question of that struggle squarely without retreat- 
ing even before an imminent split. 

In many countries there were left elements in the ranks of the social-demo- 
cratic parties. Almost nowhere did they follow the example of the P>olsheviks 
during the pre-war days. Their struggles against opportunism were half- 
hearted. They themselves were partly infected with opportunism which bios- 


somed out Inxnriantly within the Second International. The German Lefts 
were also guilty of the same fault. 

The Centrists were the main champions of unity within the old social- 
democratic parties, resolutely fighting against tendencies toward a split. 
Therein lies one of the greatest evils of centrism. 

Even the lefts failed to understand that ''the party is strengthened by cleans- 
inn itself from opportunistic elements'' (Stalin). This premise is also one of 
the very basic features of the Leninist Party. The Centrists viewed the 
strengthening of the Party exclusively from the point of view of electoral 
chances. Nor were the lefts free from that one-sidedness. 

We have formulated the problem of the Party in the above discussion from 
the viewpoint of Comrade Stalin's six basic points, which he formulated, in 
his lectures on the foundations of Leninism, as features peculiar to the Party 
of Lenin : and with respect to almost every one of these points we were able 
to establish the presence, both in the Communist Manifesto as well as in the 
"League of Communists", of definite roots of Lenin's teachings on the Party. 
Exactly because of its loyalty to the principles of Marxism did the party of 
Lenin, the C. P. S. U., become not merely a model for the revolutionary labor 
parties of all countries, but also the leading vanguard of the international labor 

The Bolsheviks are true internationalists. Theirs has always been the policy 
of true Communists, as expressed in the Communist Manifesto. 

"On the one hand, in the various national struggles of the proletarians, 
they emphasize and champion the interests of the proletariat as a whole, 
those proletarian interests that are independent of nationality ; and, on 
the other hand, in the various pliases of evolution through which the strug- 
gle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie passes, they always advo- 
cate the interests of the movement as a whole." 

Russian Bolshevism, thanks to its correct tactics and organization, which 
were justified by the greatest successes and victories 

". . . became a world-wide Bolshevism ; it brought forth the idea, the 
theory, the program and the tactics which distinguish it concretely and 
practically from social-chauvinism and social-pacifism. Bolshevism killed 
the old, rotten International of the Scheidemanns and the Kautsky.s, of the 
Renaudels and the Longuets, of the Hendersons and the MacDoualds. . . . 
Bolshevism created the ideological and tactical bases of the Third Inter- 
national — the truly proletarian and Communist International, which takes 
into consideration both the conquests of the peaceful epoch and the expe- 
riences of the revolutionary epoch into which we are entering." 

Lenin wrote those words a few months before the constituent congress of the 
Communist International. Ever since then the Communist International, under 
the guidance of the C.P.S.U., grew up into a sturdy world Party of the revo- 
lutionary proletariat. There is no country in the world without an organiza- 
tion of the Communist International. The Comintern has already been tried 
and tempered in countless fierce battles. To it belongs the future. 


When the imperialist war broke out in August, 1914, all social-democratic 
parties betrayed socialism openly. The Second International suffered an igno- 
minious crash. Tlie majority of social-democratic leaders, parliamentarists, and 
newspapers went over openly to the side of their respective governments. "The 
Fatherland is in danger — all out to protect the Fatherland!" — such was the 
slogan of the Russian. German, French, English and other social-chauvinists. 
Such was the slogan in numerous fatherlands. 

And what was proclaimed in the Communist Manifesto? 

"The workers have no country. No one can take from them what they 
they have not got.'" 

The socialists have been repeating this truth from the Communist Mani- 
festo thousands of times as their principle. And now? Today, when the 
social-democratic parties find themselves face to face with the acid test of 
history to determine whether or not they will practice what they preach, today 
— a complete betrayal. 


OhIij one party — ihe party of Lenin — fnZ/y passed this historiG test. In 
other countries only left-wing groups conducted struggles against their respective 
imperialist governments. The heroic struggle of Karl Liebknecht in Germany- 
was particularly outstanding. 

The Kautskyists in Germany, the Longuetists in France, the '-Independents" 
in England, the Mensheviks — "internationalists"^ — in Russia, and other centrists 
were playing the role of pacifists. In words they were not for war, and, just 
like the right social-democrats, they were for universal peace. But in fact this 
meant only one thing : the maintenance of peace with one's own government 
engaged in war and wnth the openly chauvinistic social-democrats. 

It is important even in these days not to forget the particular pacifistiG 
sophistry of the n-artime eentrists (because history is sure to repeat itself in 
one form or another). They were swearing and vowing, as Lenin said, that 
they are Marxists and Internationalists, that they are for exerting every pnsible 
"pressure" upon their governments for the cause of peace. They "condenuied" 
the attack on Belgium by Germany, the war Russia was waging upon German 
soil, the tendencies for annexation of territory exhibited by this or that gov- 
ernment, the "start" of the war by this or that government, but they would not 
hear or know of one thing: the class character of the imperialist irar. 

They knew perfectly well that according to the Communist Manifesto, the 
abolition of "exploitation of one nation by the other" is connected with the 
abolition of "exploitation of one individual by the other" ; but they were loth 
to derive therefrom the conclusion that is given in the Communist Manifesto: 

"In proportion as the exploitation of one individual by another comes to 
an end, the exploitation of one nation by another will come to an end. 

"The ending of class oppositions within tlie nations will end the mutual 
hostility of the nations." 

The centrist sopliists turned the question upside down : first, remove the 
hostility between nations and then it will be possible to start thinking wliat is 
to be done to remove class antagonisms. 

Lenin explained to the workers that : 

. ". . . the character of a war (be it a revolutionary or a reactionary one) 
does not depend upon who was the aggressor nor upon tlie question of 
whose territory is occupied by the 'enemy', but it depends upon the class 
of society which wages that war and what policy is being promulgated 
by that war. If that war is a reactionary, imperialistic one, waged by 
two sets of imperialistic, oppressing, predatory and reactionary bourgeoisie 
then every bourgeoisie (even of a small country) is turned into a partic- 
ipant in this looting and it is my task, the task of a representative of the 
revolutionary proletariat, to prepare the world proletarian revolution, 
as the only salvation from the horrors of the world war." 

And that was the true internationalism with respect to the war. 
The Leninist party did not forget in this case what was so strongly empha- 
sized by Marx in the Communist Manifesto: 

"The proletariat of each country must, of course, first of all settle 
matters with its own boiu'geoisie." 

The Bolsheviks were not afraid to come out for the defeat of their own 
governments in the war. That is true of Karl Liebknecht. '"The m<iin enemy 
is within one's own country," such is the correct principle for action by a 
revolutionary workers' party. "Turning the imperialist tvar into a civil tofir," 
such is the correct slogan. 

"Imperialism is the epoch of wars, but at the same time it is also the epoch 
of proletarian revolutions," declared Lenin. The imperialist war showed that 
the world bourgeoisie in this epoch can only hasten its downfall even with its 
own monstrous crimes. Millions upon millions of men were sent by the imperi- 
al!.«t boui'geoisie to the front to fight for its piratical policy, to figlit, to shed 
their blood and to die. And what was the outcome? Was it merely senseless 
destruction, as the pacifists claim? No. Was it merely rich spoils and 
conquest for which the imperialists hoped? No. Only a few of the imperialists 
have amassed a booty of other peoples' goods and lands. RussianCzarism broke 
its neck. Austria-Hungary followed suit and German imperialism came out of 
the Avar very much crippled. Such results were of doubtful benefit for the 


cause of the world bourgeoisie. Ratlier the contrary — it was an acceleration 
of the world proletarian revolution. 

The war gathered all the contradictions of imperialism into one knot, wiMtes 
Comrade Stalin, and "threw them imto the scales, thus hastening and facili- 
tating the revolutionary battles of the proletariat. In other words, imperialism 
brought about a situation which made the revolution not only a practical 
necessity, but also created favorable conditions for a frontal attack upon the 
very strongholds of capitalism." 

A revolutionary situation was created on a European scale. The Bolsheviks 
drew from it the true Marxian conclusion : since we are faced with a revolu- 
tionary situation, we have to take up the question of revolution as a practical 
problem. And they did. They did not wait for the revolution to break out 
everywhere. Lenin said : 

"To wait until the working class will accomplish the revolution on a 
world scale iiuplies that we all congeal while waiting. 

Russia was the focal point of imperialist contradictions. 

". . . not only because these contradictions were particularly apparant in 
Russia due to their particularly stupid and unbearable character; not only 
because Russia was the most important mainstay of Western imperialism, 
serving as the connecting link between the finance capital of the West and 
the colonies of the East, but also due to the fact that only in Russia there 
existed that particular and real power, which was able to solve the contra- 
dictions of capitalism in a revolutionary way." (Stalin) 

That power was the most revolutionary proletariat in the world, headed by the 
party of Lenin, and having at its disposal such an important ally as the revolu- 
tionary peasantry of Russia. 

Objective conditions for a proletarian revolution were ripe and favorable in 
many other European countries at the end of the imperialist war. But the 
Centrist "also-Marxists" did not want a revolution against their governments. 
They were afraid of a revolution. That is the crux of the matter. And because 
of that did they embark upon inventing all sorts of "Marxist" sounding excuses 
to justify their evasion of the revolution. 

The Bolsheviks, however, with an eye to the final objective, were busily pre- 
paring the proletariat of Russia for the revolution, and they led the proletariat 
to victory and to power. 

The great October Revolution has given the working class a fatherland, for 
the first time in the history of mankind. It freed the workers and all the 
oppressed nations of the former Russian Empire. It started a new era in the 
world history — the era of world proletarian rerolution. 

Soon after that, proletarian revolutions broke out in a number of countries, 
where the proletariat seized power temporarily, but was unable to retain it. 
And why? Because the labor parties at the head of the revolution were not 
Bolshevist parties. This was the main reason for the defeat of the revolution 
in Finland, for instance, and, some time later, in Bavaria and Hungary. Another 
reason was that in 1918 the German bourgeoisie sent troops into Finland, into 
the Baltic countries and into the Ukraine in order to strangle the revolution. 
Not without reason did Karl Liebknecht and the Spartacides accuse the German 
Social-Democracy of betrayal. In full agreement with this accvisation, Lenin 
wrote : 

"This accusation expresses a clear cognizance of the fact that the German 
proletariat betrayed the Russian (and the international) revolution in 
strangling Finland, the Ukraine, Latvia and Estonia. But this accusation is 
directed first and foremost not against the masses, which are downtrodden 
everywhere, but against those leaders, who, like Scheidemann and Kautsky, 
failed in their duty of revolutionary agitation, revolutionary propaganda, 
and revolutionary work among the masses to counteract their backwardness ; 
who, as a matter of fact, acted contrary to the revolutionary instincts and 
aspirations which are ever smoldering in the depths of the masses of an 
oppressed class." 

The revolution broke out in Germany in November, 1918. The German bour- 
geoisie admitted the social-democratic parties to power. And it knew what it was 
doing. The "Socialist" rulers— Ebert, Scheidemann, Noske, Haase, and Com- 
pany — saved their bourgeoisie. Very skillfully they deceived, disorganized, 
and broke up the revolutionary movement of the German working class. At 
94931 — 40 — app., pt. 1 4 


that time the Communist Party of Germany was only in the process of formation. 
In the same manner and in many other countries, the social-democracy was busy 
saving its bourgeoisie from ruin. 

It is possible that those exploits of the social-democratic leaders are merely 
a record of days gone by? He is mistaken who thinks so. Is it possible that the 
social-democratic politicians have given up befogging the minds with their pacifist 
sophistry? Not at all. As recently as February, 1932, the Second International 
burst forth again into one of its typical appeals for peace. In what respect is 
this any worse than the Basel Manifesto of 1912. What is to hinder the Second 
International from declaring itself as an "instrument of peace" in case of war, 
true to its sharp practices? 

Or did the social-democratic leaders perchance turn left? Oh, no ! They 
were very much "left" in 1919-1920 when It was necessary to charm the masses 
with radical phrases. At that time the French Socialist Party, the German 
National Socialist Party, the English independents and others were even passing 
resolutions in favor of joining the Comintern ! Many leaders of these parties, 
including Ramsay MacDonald, suddenly declared themselves adherents of the 
slogan of the dictatorship of the proletariat ! In Germany, however, Ebert, 
Scheidemann, Noske, Haase, and Company first played the role of "i^eople's 
plenipotentiaries," elected by the councils of workers' and soldiers' deputies (in 
November 1918), and nine months later — that of the happy fathers of the Weimar 
Constitution. In the meantime Noske succeeded, in the course of six days, in 
shooting down workers on the streets of Berlin and in organizing the treacherous 
murder of the best leaders of the German proletariat — Karl LieV)knecht and Rosa 

Do you realize now, you social-democratic workers, why Lenin demanded a 
change in the name of the Russian labor party, which up to 1917 also was called 
"social-democratic"? And why he uttered the words, which we, Communists, 
repeat to you today : 

"It is high time to cast oft the dirty shirt, it is time to put mi clean 

It is high time to throw the social-democartic party off your shoulders ! 

Exhibit No. 4 

[Sourca: Hearings of the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, page 5356. 
Testimony of Willinm Z. Foster, Cliairman of the Communist Party of the United 
States, September 29, 1939] 


Mr. Matthews. Mr. Foster has already stated that he accepts the Program 
of the Communist International; that is correct, is it not? 

Mr. Foster. That is right. 

Mr. Matthews. And in your book you have quoted extensively from the 
Program of the Communist International; that is also correct, is it not? 

Mr. Foster. That is right. 

Exhibit No. 5 

[Source: A pamphlet published by Workers Library Publishers, New York, 1936] 



Worljers Library Publishers : New York, 1936 

The Program of the Communist Interyiational, together with the 
Constitution., vas adopted at the forty-sixth session of the Sixth 
World Congress of the Communist International, September 1, 



The epoch of imperialism is the epoch of moribund capitalism. The World 
War of 1914-1918 and the general crisis of capitalism which it unleashed, being 


the direct result of the sharp contradictions between the growth of the pro- 
ductive forces of world economy and the national state barriers, have shown 
and proved that the material prerequisites for socialism have already ripened 
in the worab of capitalist society, that the shell of capitalism has become aa 
intolerable hindrance to the further development of mankind and that history 
has brought to the forefront the task of the revolutionary overthrow of the yoke 
of capitalism. 

Imperialism subjects large masses of the proletariat of all countries — from 
the centers of capitalist might to the most remote corners of the colonial 
world — to the dictatorship of the finance-capitalist plutocracy. With elemental 
force, imperialism exposes and accentuates all the contradictions of capitalist 
society : it carries class oppression to the utmost limits, intensifies to an 
•extraordinary degree the struggle between capitalist states, inevitably gives 
rise to world-wide imperialist wars that shake the whole prevailing system of 
relationships to the foundations and inexorably leads to the ivorld proletarian 

Binding the whole world in chains of finance-capital, forcing its yoke, by blood- 
letting, by the mailed fist and starvation, upon the proletariat of all countries, 
of all nations and races, sharpening to an immeasurable degree the exploitation, 
oppression and enslavement of the proletariat and confronting it with the 
immediate task of conquering power — imperialism creates the necessity for 
closely uniting the workers of all countries, irrespective of state boundaries and 
of differences of nationality, culture, laugiaage, race, sex or occupation, in a single 
international army of the proletariat. Thus, while imperialism develops and 
completes the process of creating the material prerequisites for socialism, it 
at the same time musters the army of its own grave-diggers, compelling the 
proletariat to organize into a militnnt international workers' association. 

On the other hand, imperialism splits off the best provided for section of the 
working class from the main mass of the workers. Bribed and corrupted by 
imperialism, this upper stratum of the working class, which constitutes the 
leading element in the Social-Democratic parties, which has a stake in the 
imperialist plunder of the colonies and is loyal to "its own" bourgeoisie and 
■"its own" imperialist state, has lined up in the decisive class battles with 
the class enemy of the proletariat. The split that occurred in the socialist 
movement in 1914 as a result of this treachery, and the subsequent treachery of 
the Social-Democratic parties, which in reality have become bourgeois labor 
parties, have demonstrated that the international proletariat will be able to 
fulfill its historical mission — to throw off the .yoke of imperialism and establish 
the proletarian dictatorship — o)ily by ruthless struggle against Social-Democracy. 
Hence, the organization of the forces of the international revolution becomes 
possible only on the platform of communism. In opposition to the opportunist 
Second International of Social-Democracy — which has become the agency of 
imperialism in the ranks of the working class — inevitably rises the Third, 
Communist. International, the international organization of the working class, 
which embodies the real unity of the revolutionary workers of the whole world. 

The war of 1914-1918 gave rise to the first attempts to establish a new, 
revolutionai-y International, as a counterpoise to the Second, social-chauvinist 
Internati inal, and as a weapon of resistance to bellicose imperialism (Zimmer- 
wald and Kienthal). The victorious proletarian revolution in Russia gave an 
imiietus to the formation of Communist Parties in the centers of capitalism 
and in the colonies. In 1919. the Communist International was formed, and for 
the first time in world history the most advanced strata of the European and 
American proletariat were really united in the pi'ocess of practical revolutionary 
struggle with the proletariat of China and India and with the Negro toilers of 
Africa and America. 

As the united and centralized international Party of the proletariat, the 
Communist International is the only heir to the prininples of the First Inter- 
national, carrying them forward upon the new, mass foundation of the revolu- 
tionary proletarian movement. The experience gathered from the first im]>e- 
riaiist war, from the subsequent period of the revolutionary crisis of capitalism, 
from the series of revolutions in Europe and in the colonial countries ; the 
experience gathered from the dictatorship of the proletariat and socialist 
construction in the U. S. S. R. and from the work of all the Sections of the 
■Communist International as recorded in the decisions of its : finally, 
the fact that the struggle between the imperialist bourgeoisie and the proletariat 
is more and more assuming an international character — all this creates the 


need for a program of the Communist International, a uniform and common 
program for all Sections of the Communist International. This program of the 
Communist International, as the supreme critical generalization of the whole 
body of historical exiierience of the international revolutionary proletarian 
movement, becomes tlie program of struggle for the world proletarian dictator- 
sliip, ihe program of struggle for world eommunism. 

Uniting as it does, the revolutionary workers, who lead the millions of 
oppressed and exploited against the bourgeoisie and its "socialist'' agents, the 
Communist International regards itself as the historical successor to the "Com- 
munist League" and the First International led by Marx, and as the inheritor 
of the best of the pre-war traditions of the Second International. The First 
International laid the ideological foundation for the International proletarian 
strxiggle for socialism. The tiecond International, in the best period of its ex- 
istence, prepared the ground for the expansion of the labor movement among 
the masses. The Third, Communist International, in continuing the work of 
the First International, and in accepting the fruits of the work of the Second In- 
ternational, has resolutely lopped off the latter's opportunism, social-chauvinism, 
and bourgeois distortion of socialism and has commenced to realize the dictator- 
ship of the proletariat. In this manner the Communist International continues 
the glorious and heroic traditions of the International labor movement ; of the 
English Chartists and the French insurrectionists of 1831 ; of tlie French and 
German working class revolutionaries of 1848; of the immortal fighters and 
martyrs of the Paris Commune; of the valiant soldiers of the German, Hungar- 
ian and Finnish revolutions; of the workers under the former tsarist despotism — - 
the victorious bearers of the proletarian dictatorship; of the Chinese pro- 
letarians — the heroes of Canton and Shanghai. 

Basing Itself on the experience of the revokitionary labor movement on all 
continents and of all peoples, the Communist International, in its theoretical and 
practical work, stands wholly and unreservedly upon the ground of revolutionary 
Marxism and its further development, Leninism, which is nothing else but 
Marxism of the epoch of imperialism and proletarian revolution. 

Advocating and propagating the dialetical materialism, of Marx and Engels 
and employing it as the revolutionary method of the cognition of reality, with 
the view to the revolutionary transformation of this reality, the Communist In- 
ternational wages an active struggle against all forms of bourgeois philosophy 
and against all forms of theoretical and practical opportunism. Standing 
on the ground of consistent proletarian class struggle and subordinating the 
temporary, partial, group and national Interests of the proletariat to its lasting, 
general, international interests, the Communist International mercilessly exposes 
all forms of the doctrine of "class peace" that the reformists have accepted 
from the bourgeoisie. Expressing the historical need for an international 
organization of revolutionary proletarian.s — -the grave-diggers of the capitalist 
order — the Communist International is the only international force that has 
for its program the dictatorship of the proletariat and communism, and that 
openly comes out as the organizer of the international proletarian revolution. 

chapter one 

The World S"s»3tem of Capitalism, Its Development and Inevitable Downfall 

1. The General Laxos of the Development of Capitalism and the Epoch of 

Industrial Capital 

The characteristic features of capitalist society which arose on the basis of 
commodity production are the monopoly of the most important and vital means 
of production by the capitalist class and big landlords; the exploitation of the 
wage labor of the proletariat, which, being deprived of the means of produc- 
tion, is compelled to sell its labor power ; the production of commodities for 
profit; and these, linked up with all the planless and anarchic character of the 
process of ])roduction as a whole ; exploitation relationships and the economic 
domination of the bourgeoisie and their political expression in the organized 
capitalist state — the instrument for the suppression of the proletariat. 

The history of capitalism has entirely confirmed the Marxian theory con- 
cerning the laws of development of capitalist society and the contradiction of 
this development which ineA'itably lead to the downfall of the whole capitalist 


lu its quest for profits the bourgeoisie was compelled to develop the productive 
forces oa an ever-increasing scale and to strengthen and expand the domination 
of capitalist relationships of production. Thus, the develoimient of capitalism 
constantly reproduces on a wider scale all the inherent contradictious of the capi- 
talist system, primarily, the decisive contradiction betvi-een the social character 
of labor and private appropriation, between the growth of the productive forces 
and the property i-elations of capitalism. The predominance of private prop- 
erty in the means ot production and the anarchy prevailing in the process of 
produi-tion have disturlied the equilibrium between the various branches of 
production ; for a growing contradiction developed between the tendency towards 
unlimited expansion of production and the restricted consumption of the masses 
of the proletariat (general over-production), and this resulted in periodical 
devasraring crises and mass unemployment among the proletariat. The pre- 
dominance of private property also found expression in the competition that 
prevailed in each separate capitalist couutry as well as on the constantly ex- 
panding world market. This latter form of capitalist rivalry resulted in a 
numl)er of wars, which are the inevitable accompaniment of capitalist 

On the other hand, the technical and economic advantages of large-scale pro- 
duction have resulted in the squeezing out and destruction in the competitive 
struggle of the pre-capitalist economic forms and in the ever-increasing concen- 
tration! ami centralization of capital. In the sphere of industry this hiw of con- 
centration and centralization of capital manifested itself primarily in the direct 
ruin of small enterprises and partly in their being reduced to the position of 
auxiliary units of large enterprises. In the domain of agriculture which, owing 
to the existence of the monopoly in land and absolute rent, must inevitably lag 
behind the general rate of development, this law not only found expression in 
the process of differentiation that took place among the peasantry and in the 
proletarianization of broad strata of the latter, but also and mainly in the open 
and concealed subordination of small peasant economy to the domination of 
big capital ; small farming has been able to maintain a nominal independence 
only at the price of extreme intensification of labor and systematic under- 

Tlie e\er-growing application of machinery, the constant improvements in 
technique and the resultant uninterrupted rise in the organic composition of 
capital, accompanied by still further division, increased productivity and inten- 
sity of labor, meant also increased employment of female and child labor, the 
formation of enormous industrial reserve armies which are constantly replen- 
ished by the proletarianized peasantry who are forced to leave their villages as 
well as by the ruined urban small and middle bourgeoisie. The collection of a 
handful of capitalist ntagnates at one pole of social relationships and of a 
gigantic mass of the proletariat at the other ; the constantly increasing rate 
of exploitation of the working class, the reproduction on a wider scale of the 
deepest contradictions of capitalism and their consequences (crises, wars, etc.) ; 
the constant growth of .social inequality, the rising discontent of the proletariat 
united and schooled by the mechanism of capitalist production itself — all this 
was inevitably undermining the foundations of capitalism, bringing nearer the 
day of its collapse. 

Simultaneously, a profound change has taken place in the social and cultural 
life of capitalist society ; the parasitical decadence of the rentier group of the 
bourgeoisie : the break-up of the family, which expresses the growing contradic- 
tion between the mass participation of women in social production and the 
forms of family and domestic life largely inherited from previous economic 
epochs; the growing shallowness and degeneracy of cultural and ideological 
life resulting from the minute specialization of labor, the monstrous forms of ur- 
ban life and the restrictedness of rural life ; the incapability of the bourgeoisie, 
notwithstanding the enormous achievements of the natural sciences, to create 
a .\vnthetically scientific philosophy, and the growth of idealogical, mystical and 
religious superstition, are all plienomena signalizing the approach of the 
historical end of the capitalist system. 

2. The Era of Finance Capital (Imperialism) 

The period of induntrial capitalism was, in the main, a period of "free com- 
petition" : a period of a relatively smooth evolution and expansion of capitalism 
throughou.t the whole world, when the as yet unoccupied colonies were being 
di',ided up and conquered by armed force ; a period of continuous growth of the 


inner contradictions of capitalism, tlie burden of wtiich fell mainly upon the 
systematically plundered, crushed and oppressed colonial periphery. 

Towards the beginning of the twentieth century, this period was replaced by 
the period of imperialism, during which capitalism developed spasmodically 
and conflictingly ; free competition raindly gave way to monopoly, the previously 
"available" colonial lands had already been divided up, and the struggle for 
a redistribution of colonies and spheres of influence inevitably began to assume 
primarily the form of a struggle by force of arms. 

Thus, the entire scope and truly world-wide scale of the contradictions of 
capitalism become most glaringly revealed in the epoch of iinperialism (finance 
capitalism), which, from the historical standpoint, signifies a new form of 
capitalism, a new system of relationship between the various parts of world 
capitalist economy and a change in the relationship between the principal 
classes of capitalist society. 

This new historical period set in as a result of the operation of the principal 
dynamic laws of capitalist society. It grew out of the development of indus- 
trial capitalism, and is the historical continuation of the latter. It sharpened 
the manifestations of all the fundamental tendencies and laws of capitalist 
development, of all its fundamental contradictions and antagonisms. The law 
of the concentration and centralization of capital led to the formation of power- 
ful combines (cartels, syndicates, trusts), to a new form of gigantic combina- 
tions of enterprises linked up into one system by the banks. The merging of 
industrial capital with banking capital, the absorption of big land ownership 
into the gent>ral system of capitalist organization, and the monopolistic charac- 
ter of this form of capitalism transformed the epoch of industrial capital into 
the epoch of finance capital. "Free competition" of the period of industrial capi- 
talism, which replaced feudal monopoly and the monopoly of merchant capital, 
became itself transformed into ftnmice-capUal mouopoly. At the same time, the 
capitalist monopolies which grow out of free competition do not eliminate com- 
petition, but exist side by side with and hover over it, and thus give rise to a 
series of exceptionally great and acute contradictions, frictions and conflicts. 

The growing application of complex machinery, of chemical processes and of 
electric energy ; the resulting higher organic composition of capital and, con- 
sequently, decline in the rate of profit, which only the biggest monopolistic 
combines are able to counteract for a time by their policy of high monopoly 
prices, still further stimulate the quest for colonial super-profits and the strug- 
gle for a new division of the world. Standardized mass production creates the 
demand for new foreign markets. The growing demand for raw materials and 
fuel intensifies the race for their sources. Lastly, the system of high protection, 
which hinders the export of merchandise and secures additional ])rortt for ex- 
ported capital, creates additional stimuli for the export of capital. Export of 
capital becomes, therefore, the decisive and specific form of economic contact 
between the various parts of world economy. The total effect of all 
this is that the monopolist ownership of colonial markets, of sources of raw 
materials, and of spheres of investment of capital extremely accentuates the 
general uneveuness of capitalist developm.ent and sharpens the conflicts between 
the "great powers" of finance capital over the redistribution of the colonies and 
spheres of infiuence. 

The growth of the productive forces of world economy thus leads to the further 
internationalism of economic life and simultaneously leads to a struggle for re- 
distribution of the world, already divided up among the biggest finance capital 
states, to a change in and sharpening of the forms of tliis struggle, to stiperseding 
to an increasing degree the method of lower prices which the method of forcible 
pressure (boycott, high protection, tariff wars, wars proper, etc.). Consequently, 
the monopolistic form of capitalism is inevitably accompanied by imperialist wars, 
which, by the area they embrace and the destructiveness of their technique, have 
no parallel in world history. 

3. The Forces of Imperialism and the Forces of Revolution 

Expressing the tendency for unification of the various sections of the dominant 
class, the imperialist form of capitalism places the broad masses of the proletariat 
in opposition, not to a single employer, but, to an increasing degree, to the capitalist 
class as a whole and to the capitalist state. On the other hand, this form of 
capitalism breaks down the national barriers that have become too restricted for 
it, widens the scope of the capitalist state power of the dominant Great Power 
and brings it in opposition to the vast masses of the nationality oppressed peoples 


in the so-called small nations and in the colonies. Finally, this form of capitalism 
brings the imperialist states most sharply in opposition to each other. 

This being the case, state power, whicli is becoming the dictatorship of the 
finance-capitalist oligarchy and the expression of its concentrated might, acquires 
special significance for the bourgeoise. The functions of this multi-national im- 
perialist state grow in all directions. The development of state capitalist forms 
which facilitate the struggle in foreign jnarkets (mobilization of industry for war 
purposes) as well as the struggle against the working class ; the monstrous growtii 
of militarism (armies, naval and air fleets, and the employment of chemistry and 
bacteriology) ; the increasing pressure of the imperialist state upon the Avorkiiig 
class (the growth of exploitation and direct suppression of the workers on the 
one hand and the systematic policy of bribing the bureaucratic reformist leader- 
ship on the other), all this expresses the enormous growth of the power of the 
state. Under these circumstances, every more or less important action of tlie 
proletariat becomes transformed into an action against the state power, i. c, 
into political action. 

Thus the development of capitalism, and particularly the imperialist epoch of 
its develoinnent, reproduces the fundamental contradictions of capitalism on an 
increasingly magnified scale. Competition among small capitalists ceases, only to 
make way for competition among big capitalists ; where competition among big 
capitalists subsides, it flares up between gigantic combinations of capitalist mag- 
nates and their states ; local and national crises become transformed into crises 
affecting a number of countries and, subsequently, into world crises ; local wars 
give way to wars between coalitions of states and to world wars ; the class strug- 
gles change from isolated actions of single groups of workers into nation-wide 
conflicts and subsequently, into an international struggle of the world proletariat 
against the world bourgeoisie. Finally, two main revolutionary forces are or- 
ganising against the organized might of finance capital — on the one hand, the 
workers in the capitalist states, on the other, the victims of the oppression of 
foreign capital, the masses of the people in the eolonies, marching under the lead- 
ership and the hegemony of the international revolutionary proletarian move- 

However, this fundamental revolutionary tendency is temporarily paralyzed 
by the fact that certain sections of the European, North American and Japanese 
proletariat are bribed by the imperialist bourgeoisie, and by the treachery of the 
national bourgeoisie in the semi-colonial and colonial countries which is fright- 
ened by the revolutionary mass movement. The bourgeoisie of imperialist 
countries, which is able to secure additional surplus profits from the position it 
holds in the world market (more developed technique, export of capital to 
countries with a higher rate of profit, etc.), and from the proceeds of its plunder 
of the colonies and semi-colonies — was able to raise the wages of its "own"' 
workers out of the surplus profits, thus giving workers an interest in the 
development of "their" capitalism, in the plunder of the colonies and in being 
loyal to the imperialist state. 

This systematic bribery was and is being widely practised in the most powerful 
imperialist countries and finds most striking expression in the ideology and prac- 
tice of tlie labor aristocracy and the bureaucratic strata of the working class, 
i. e., the Social-Democratic and trade union leaders, who proved to be the direct 
agencies of bourgeois influence among the proletariat and stalwart pillars of 
the capitalistist system. 

However, while it has stimulated the growth of the corrupt upper stratum of 
the working class, imperialism in the end destroys their influence upon the work- 
ing class, because the growing contradictions of imperialism, the worsening of the 
conditions of the broad masses of the workers, the mass unemijloyment among 
the proletariat, the enormous cost of military conflicts and the "burdens they 
entail, the fact that certain powers have lost their monopolistic position in the 
world market, the break-away of the colonies, etc., serve to undermine the basis 
of Social-Democracy among the masses. Similarly, the systematic bribery of 
the various sections of the bourgeoisie in the colonies and semi-colonies, their 
betrayal of the national-revolutionary movement and their rapprochement with 
the imperialist powers can paralyze the development of the revolutionary crisis 
only for a time. In the final analysis, this leads to the intensification of imperial- 
ist oppression, to the decline of the influence of the national bourgeoisie upon 
the masses of the people, to the .sharpening of the revolutionary crisis, to the 
unleashing of the agrarian revolution of the broad masses of the pea.santry and to 
the creation of conditions favorable for the establishment of the hegemony of the 
proletariat in the colonies and dependencies in the popular mass struggle for in- 
dependence and complete national liberation. 


4. Imperialism and the Doumfall of Capitalism 

Imperialism has greatly developed the productive forces of world capitalism. 
It has completed the preparation of all the material prerequisites for the socialist 
organization of society. By its vi'ars it has demonstrated that the productive 
forces of world economy, which have outgrown the restricted boundaries of 
imperialist states, demand the organization of economy on a world, or inter- 
national, scale. Imperialism tries to remove this contradiction by hacking a road 
with fire and sword towards a single world state-capital trust, which is to organize 
the whole world economy. This sanguinary utopia is being extolled by the 
Social-Democratic ideologist as a peaceful method of a new, "organized", capital- 
ism. In reality, this utopia encounters insurmountable objective obstacles of such 
magnitude that capitalism must inevitably fall beneath the weight of its own 
contradictions. The law of the uneven development of capitalism, accentuated 
in the epoch of imperialism, renders firm and durable international combinations 
of imperialist powers impossible. On the other hand, imperialist wars, which are 
developing into world wars, and by which the law of centralization of capitalism 
strives to reach its world limit — a single world trust — are accompanied by so 
much destruction and j)lace such burdens upon the shoulders of the working class 
and of the millions of colonial proletarians and peasants, that capitalism nnist 
inevitabl.v perish beneath the blows of the proletarian revolution long before this 
goal is reached. 

Being the highest phase of capitalist development, developing the productive 
forces of world economy to enormous dimensions, refashioning the whole 
world after its own image, imperialism draws into the orbit of finance-capitalist 
exploitation all colonies, all races and all nations. At the same time, however, 
the monopolistic form of capital increasingly develops the elements of parasitical 
degeneration, decay and decline of capitalism. By destroying, to some extent, 
the driving force of competition, by conducting a policy of monopoly prices, and 
having undivided mastery of the market, monopoly capital tends to retard the 
further develojmient of the forces of production. In squeezing enormous sums 
of surplus profits out of the millions of colonial workers and peasants and in 
accumulating colossal incomes from this exploitation, imperialism is creating 
a type of decaying and parasitically degenerate rentier-states as well as whole 
strata of parasites who live by clipping coupons. Wliile completing the process 
of creating the material prerequisites for socialism (the concentration of means 
of production, the enormous socialization of labor, the growth of labor organi- 
zations), the epoch of imperialism intensifies the antagonisms among the Great 
Powers and gives rise to wars which cause the break-up of unified world 
economy. is therefore moribund and decayimj capitalism. It is the 
final stage of development of the capitalist system. It is the threshold of world 
social revolvtion. 

Thus, international proletarian revolution emerges out of the conditions of 
development of capitalism generally, and out of its imperialist phase in par- 
ticular. The capitalist system as a whole is approaching its final collapse. The 
dictatorship of finance capital is perishing to give way to the dictatorship of 
the proletariat. 

chapter two 

The General Crisis of Capitalism and the First Phase of World Revolution 

1. The World War and the Progress of the Revolutionary Crisis 

The imperialist struggle among the largest capitalist states for the redistribu- 
tion of tbe globe led to the first imiierialist world war (1914-1918). This war 
shook the whole system of world capitalism and marked the beginning of the 
period of its general crisis. It bent to its service the entire national economy 
of the belligerent countries, thus creating the mailed fist of state capitalism; 
it increased unproductive expenditures to enormous dimensions, destroyed enor- 
mous quantities of the means of production and human labor power, ruined 
large masses of the population and imposed incalculable burdens upon the in- 
dustrial workers, the peasants and the colonial peoples. It inevitably led to 
the intensification of the class struggle, which grows into open revolutionary 
mass action and civil ivar. The imperialist front was broken at its weakest 
link, in tsarist Russia. Tlie Felyrnarij revolution of 1017 overthrew the domina- 


lion of the autocracy of the big land-owning class. The Ortobcr revolution 
overthrew the rule of the bourgeoisie. This victorious proletjirian revolution 
expropriated the expropriators, took the means of production from the laud- 
lords and the capitalists, and for the first time in human history set up and 
consolidated the dictatorship of the proletariat in an enormous country, brought 
into b«'ing a new, Soviet type of state and initiated the international proletarian 

The powerful shock to which the whole of world capitalism was subjected, 
the sharpening of the class struggle and the direct influence of the October 
proletarian revolution gave rise to a series of revolutions and revolutionary 
actions on the continent of Europe as well as in the colonial and semi-colonial 
countries : January, 191S, the proletarian revolution in Finland ; August, 191S, 
the so-called "rice-riots" in Japan ; November, 1918, the revolutions in Austria 
and Germany, which overthrew the semi-feudal mon.archies ; March, 1919, the 
proletarian revolution in Hungary and the uprising in Korea ; April, 1919, the 
Soviet government in Bavaria ; January, 1920, the bourgeois-national revolution 
in Turkey : September, 1920, the seizure of the factories by the workers in Italy ; 
March, 1921, the rising of the advanced workers of Germany ; September, 1923, 
the uprising in Bulgaria; autumn, 1923, the revolutionary crisis in Germany; 
December, 1924, the uprising in Estonia ; April, 1925, the uprising in Morocco ; 
August, 1925, uprising in Syria ; May, 1926, the general strike in England ; July, 
1927, the proletarian uprising in Vienna. These events, as well as events like 
the uprising in Indonesia, the deep ferment in India, the great Chinese revolution 
which shook the whole Asiatic continent, are links in one and the same inter- 
national revolutionary chain, constituent parts of the profound general crisis 
of capitalism. This international revolutionary process embi'aced the direct 
struggle for the dictatorship of the proletariat, as well as national wars of 
liberation and colonial uprisings against imperialism which are inseparably 
linked with the agrarian mass mo"S'ement of millions of peasants. Thus, an 
enormous mass of humanity was swept into the revolutionary torrent. World 
history entered a new phase of development — a phase of prolonged general crisis 
of the capitalist system. In this process, the unity of world economy found 
expression in the international character of the revolution, while the uneven 
develoi)ment of its separate parts was expressed in the absence of simultaneity 
in the outbreak of revolution in the different countries. 

The first attempts at revolutionary overthrow, which sprang from the acute 
crisis of capitalism (1918-1921), ended in the victory and consolidation of the 
dictatorship of the proletariat in the U. S. S. R. and in the defeat of the pro- 
letariat in a number of other countries. These defeats were primarily due to 
the treacherous tactics of the Social-Democratic and reformist trade union 
leaders, but they were also due to the fact that the majority of the working 
class had not yet accepted the lead of the Communists and that in a number of 
important countries Communist Parties had not yet come into existence at all. 
As a result of these defeats, which created the opportunity for intensifying the 
exploitation of the mass of the proletariat and the colonial peoples, and for 
severely depres.sing their standard of living, the bourgeoisie was able to achieve 
a partial stabilization of capitalist relations. 

2. The Revolutionary Crisis and Counter-Revolutionary Social-Democracy 

During the progress of the international revolution, the leading cadres of the 
Social-Democratic parties and of the reformist trade unions on the one hand, 
and the militant capitalist organizations of the fascist type on the other, ac- 
quired special significance as a powerful counter-revolutionary force actively 
fighting against the revolution and actively supporting the partial stabilization 
of capitalism. 

The war crisis of 1914-1918 was accompanied by the disgraceful collapse of 
the Social-Democratic Second International. Acting in complete violation of the 
thesis of the Commmiist Manifesto written by Marx and Engels that the prole- 
tariat has no fatherland under capitalism, and in complete violation of the 
anti-war resolutions passed by the Stuttgart and Basle Congresses, the leaders 
of the Social-Democratic parties in the various countries, with a few exceptions, 
voted for the war credits, came out definitely in defense of the imperialist 
''fatherland" (i. e., the state organizations of the imperialist bouregeoisie) and 
instead of combatting the imperialist v/ar, became its loyal soldiers, bards and 
propagandists (social-patriotism, which grew into social-imperialism). In the 
subsequent period, Social-Democracy supported the predatory treaties (Brest- 


Litovsk, Versailles) ; it actively aligned itself with the militarists in the oloody 
snppression of proletarian nprisiugs (Noske) ; it conducted armed warfare 
against the first proletarian republic (Soviet Russia) ; it despicably betrayed the 
victorious proletariat (Hungary) ; it joined the imperialist League of Nations 
(Albert Thomas, Paul Boncour, Vanden-elde) ; it openly supported the imperial- 
ist slave-owners against the colonial slaves (the British Labor Party) ; it actively 
supported the most reactionary executioners of the working class (Bulgaria, 
Poland) ; it took upon itself the initiative in securing the passage of imperialist 
"military laws" (France) ; it betrayed the general strike of the British prole- 
tariat ; it helped and is still helping to strangle China and India (the MacDonald 
government) ; it acts as tlie propagandist for the imperialist League of Nations; 
it is capital's herald and organizer of the strujrgle against the dictatorship of 
the proletariat in the U. S. S. R. (Kautsky, Hilferding). 

In its systematic conduct of this counter-revolutionary policy, Social-Democ- 
racy operates on two flanks: the Right wing of Social-Democracy, avowedly 
counter-revolutionary, is essential for negotiating and maintaining direct con- 
tact with the bourgeoisie ; the ''Left" wing is essential for the subtle deception 
of the workers. While playing with pacifist and at times even with revolu- 
tionary phrases, "Left wing" Social-Democracy in practice acts against the 
workers, particularly in acute and critical situations (the British I. L. P. and 
the "Left" leaders of the General Council during the general strike in 1926; 
Otto Bauer and Co., at the time of the Vienna uprising), and is, therefore, the 
most dangerous faction in the Social-Democratic parties. While serving the 
interests of the bourgeoisie in the ranks of the working class and being wholly 
in favor of class cooperation and coalition with the bourgeoisie, Social-Democ- 
racy, at certain periods, is compelled to play the part of an opposition party 
and even to act as if it were defending the class interests of the proletariat in 
its economic struggles, in order thereby to win the confidence of a section of 
the working class and thus be in a position the more shamefully to betray the 
lasting interests of the working class, particularly in the midst of decisive class 

The principal function of Social-Democracy at the present time is to disrupt 
the essential fighting unity of the proletariat in its struggle against imperialism. 
In splitting and disrupting the united front of the proletarian struggle against 
capital, Social-Democracy serves as the mainstay of imperialism in the working 
class. International Social-Democracy of all shades, the Second International 
and its trade union branch, the Amsterdam Federation of Trade Unions, have 
thus become the last reserve of bourgeois society, its most reliable pillar of 

3. The Crisis of Capitalism and Fascism 

Along with Social-Democracy, with whose aid the bourgeoisie suppresses the 
workers or lulls their class vigilance, fascism comes into the scene. 

The epoch of imperialism, the sharpening of the class struggle and the 
growth of the elements of civil war — particularly after the imperialist war — 
led to the bankruptcy of parliamentarism. Hence, the adoption of "new" 
methods and forms of administration (for example, the system of inner cab- 
inets, the formation of oligarchical groups acting behind the scenes, the dete- 
rioration and falsification of the function of the "popular representative" 
institutions, the restriction and annulment of "democratic liberties," etc.). 
Under certain special historical conditions, the progress of this bourgeois, 
reactionary offensive assumes the form of fascism. These conditions are: 
instability of capitalist relationships ; the existence of a considerable declassed 
social element, the pauperization of broad strata of the urban petty bourgeoise 
and of the intelligentsia ; discontent among the rural petty bourgeoisie and, 
finally, the constant menace of mass proletarian action. In order to stabilize 
and perpetuate its rule, the bourgeoisie is compelled to an increasing degree 
to abandon the parliamentary system in favor of the fascist system, which is 
independent of inter-party arrangements and combinations. The fascist system 
is a system of direct dictatorship, ideologically masked by the "national idea" 
and representation of "occupations" (in reality, representation of the various 
groups of the ruling class). It is a system that resorts to a peculiar form of 
social demagogy (anti-Semitism, occasional sorties against usui'ers' capital and 
gestures of impatience with the parliamentary "talking shop") in order to 
utilize the discontent of the petty bourgeoisie, the intellectuals and other strata 
of society, and to corruption — the creation of a compact and well-paid hier- 
archy of fascist units, a party apparatiis and a bureaucracy. At the same time. 


fascism strives to permeate the working class bj' recruiting the most bacliward 
strata of worljers to its ranks by phiying upon their discontent, by talving 
advantage of the inaction of Social-Democracy, etc. The principal aim of 
fascism is to destroy the revolutionary vanguard of the working class, i. e., the 
Communist sections of the proletariat and their leading forces. The combina- 
tion of social demagogy, corruption and active white terror, in conjunction with 
extreme imperialist aggressiveness in the sphere of foreign politics, are the 
characteristic features of fascism. In periods of acute crisis for the bour- 
geoisie, fascism resorts to anti-capitalist phraseology, but after it has estab- 
lished itself at the helm of state, it casts aside its anti-caiiitalist rattle and 
discloses itself as the terrorist dictatorship of big capital. 

The bourgeoisie resorts either to the method of fascism or to the method of 
coalition with Social-Democracy according to the changes in the political situa- 
tion ; while Social-Democracy itself often plays a fascist role in periods when 
the situation is critical for capitalism. 

In the iirocess of development Social-Democracy manifests fascist tendencies 
which, however, does not prevent it, in other political situations, from posing 
as an opposition party against the bourgeois government. The fascist method 
and the method of coalition with Social-Democracy are hot the methods 
employed in "normal" capitalist conditions ; they are symptoms of the general 
capitalist crisis, and are employed by the bourgeoisie in order to stem the 
advance of the revolution. 

4. The Contradictions of Capitalist Stabilization aaid the Inevitability of the 

Revolutionary Collapse of Capitalism 

Experience throughout the post-war historical period has shown that the 
stabilization achieved by the repression of the working class and the systematic 
depression of its standard of living can be only a partial, transient, and 
decaying stabilization. 

The spasmodic and feverish development of technique bordering in some 
countries on a new technical revolution, the accelerated process of concentration 
and centralization of capital, the formation of giant trusts and of "national" 
and "international" monopolies, the merging of trusts with the state power and 
the growth of world capitalist economy cannot, however, eliminate the general 
crisis of the capitalist system. The break-up of world economy into a capitalist 
and a socialist sector, the shrinking of markets and the anti-imperialist move- 
ment in the colonies intensify all the contradictions of capitalism, which is 
developing on a new, post-war basis. This very technical progress and ration- 
alization of industry, the reverse side of which is the closing down and 
liquidation of numerous enterprises, the restriction of production, and the 
ruthless and destructive exploitation of labor power, lead to chronic unemploy- 
ment on a scale never before experienced. The absolute deterioration of the 
condition of the working class becomes a fact even in certain highly developed 
capitalist countries. The growing competition between imperialist countries, 
the constant menace of war and the growing intensity of class conflicts prepare 
the ground for a new and higher stage of development of the general crisis of and of the world proletarian revolution. 

As a result of the first round of imperialist wars (the World War of 1914- 
1918) and of the October victory of the working class in the former Russian 
tsarist empire, world economy has been split into two fundamentally hostile 
camps; the camp of the imperialist states and the camp of the dictatorship 
of the proletariat in the U. S. S. R. The difference in class structure and in 
the class character of the government in the two camps, the fundamental 
differences in the aims each pursues in internal, foreign, economic, and cultural 
policy, the fundamentally different courses of their development, bring the 
capitalist world into sharp conflict with the state of the victorious proletariat. 
Within the framework of a formerly uniform world economy, two antagonistic 
systems are now contesting against each other: the system of and 
the system of socialism. The class struggle, which hitherto was conducted in 
forms determined by the fact that the proletariat was not in possession of 
state power, is now being conducted on an enormous and really world scale; 
the working class of the world has now its own state — the one and only father- 
land of the international proletariat. The existence of the Soviet Union and 
the Influence it exercises upon the toiling and oppressed masses all over the 
world is in itself a most striking expression of the profound crisis of the world 
capitalist system and of the expansion and intensification of the struggle 
to a degree hitherto without parallel in history. 


The capitalist world, powerless to eliminate its inherent contradictions, strives 
to establish interuatioual associations (the League of Nations) the main purpose 
of which is to retard the irresistible growth of the revolutionary crisis and to 
strangle the union of proletarian republics by war or blockade. At the same 
time, all the forces of the revolutionary proletariat and of the oppressed colonial 
masses are rallying around the U. S. S. R. The world coalition of Capiialr 
unstable, internally corroded, but armed to the teeth, is confronted by a single 
world coalition of lahor. Thus, as a result of the first round of imperialist wars 
a new, fundamental antagonism has arisen of world historical scope and signifi- 
cance — the antagonism between the TJ. S. S. R. and the capitalist world. 

Meanwhile, the inherent antagonisms within the capitalist sector of world 
economy itself have become intensified. The shifting of the economic center of 
the world to the United States of America and the fact of the "Dollar Repub- 
lic" having become a world exploiter have caused the relations between United 
States and European capitalism, particularly British capitalism, to become 
strained. The conflict between Great Britain — the most powerful of the old, 
conservative imperialist states — and the United States — the greatest of the 
young imperialist 'States, which has already won world hegemony for itself — is 
becoming the pivot of the world conflicts among the finance capitalist states. 
Germany, though plundered by the Versailles peace, is now economically re- 
covered ; she is resuming the path of imperialist politics, and once again she 
stands out as a serious competitor in the world market. The Pacific is becoming- 
involved in a tangle of contradictious which center mainly around the antag- 
onism between America and Japan. Along with these main antogonisms, the 
conflict of interests among the unstable and constantly changing groupings 
of powers is increasing, while the minor powers serve as the auxiliary instru- 
ments in the hands of the imperialist giants and their coalitions. 

The growth of the productive capacity of the industrial apparatus of world 
capitnlism, at a time when the European home markets have shnmk as a result 
of the war, and in face of the Soviet Union's dropping out of the system of 
purely capitalist intercourse and of the close monopoly of the most important 
sources of raw material and fuel, leads to ever-widening conflicts between 
the capitalist states. The "peaceful" struggle for oil, rubber, cotton, coal and 
metals and for a redistribution of markets and spheres for the export of 
capital is inexorably leading to (mother irorld war, the destructiveness of which 
will increase in proiwrtion to the progress achieved in the furiously developing- 
technique of war. 

Simultaneously, the antagonisms between the imperialist home countries and 
the colonial and semi-colonial countries are yroioing. The relative weakening 
of European imperialism as a result of the war, the development of capitalism 
in the colonies, the influence of the Soviet revolution, and the centrifugal 
tendencies within the premier maritime and colonial empire — Great Britain 
(Canada, Australia, South Africa), have stimulated rebellions in the colonies 
and semi-colonies. The great Chinese revolution, which roused hundreds of 
millions of the Chinese people to action, caused an enormous breach in the 
imperialist system. The unceasing revolutionary ferment among hundreds 
of miliions of Indian workers and peasants is threatening to break the domina- 
tion of the world citadel of imperialism, Great Britain. The growth of ten- 
dencies directed against the powerful imperialism of the United States in the 
Latin-American countries threatens to undermine the expansion of North 
American Capital. Thus, the revolutionary process in the colonies, which is 
drawing into the struggle against imperialism the overwhelming ma.iority of the 
world's population that is subjected to the rule of the finance-capital oligarchy 
of a few "great powers" of imperialism, also expresses the profound general 
crisis of capitalism. Even in Europe itself, where imperialism has put a 
number of small nations under its heel, the national question is a factor that 
intensifies the inherent contradictions of capitalism. 

Finally, the revolutionary crisis is inexoi'ably maturing in the very centers of 
impeiialism : the capitalist offensive against the working clasts. the attack 
upon the workers' standard of living, upon their organizations and their political 
rights, and the growth of white terror, rouse increasing resistance on tlie part 
of the broad masses of the proletariat and intensify the class struggle between 
the working class and trustified capital. The great battles fought between labor 
and capital, the accelerated swing of the masses to the Left, the growth in 
the influence and authority of the Communist Parties ; the enormous growth 
of sympathy of the broad masses of workers for the land of the proletarian 
dictatorship — all this is a clear symptom of the maturing of a new revolu- 
tionary upsurge in the centers of imperialism. 


Thus, the sj^stem of world imperialism, and with it the partial stabilization 
of capitalism, is being corroded from various causes; by the antagonisms and 
conflicts between the imperialist states ; by the rising of the vast masses in the 
colonial countries; by the action of the revolutionary proletariat in the im- 
perialist home countries; finally, by the le.'iding force in the vi^orld revolutionary 
movement— the proletarian dictatorship in the U. S. S. R. The international 
revolution is developing. 

Against this revolution, imperialism is gathering its forces. Expeditions 
against the colonies, a new world war. a campaign against the U. S. S. R. are 
matters which now figure prominently in the politics of imperialism. This 
musr lead to the release of all the forces of international revolution and to the 
inevitable doom of capitalism. 

chapter three 

The Ui.timate Aim of the Communist International^ — World Communism 

The ultimate aim of the Communist International is to replace world capital- 
ist economy by a world system of communism. Communist society, the basis 
for which has" been prepared by the whole course of historical development, is 
mankind's only way out, for it alone can abolish the contradictions of the 
capitalist system which threaten to degrade and destroy the human race. 

Communist society will abolish the class division of society, /. c, simultaneously 
with the abolition of anarchy of production, it will abolish all forms of exploita- 
tion and oppression of man by man. Society will no longer consist of antago- 
nistic classes in conflict with each other, but will represent a united common- 
wealth of labor. For the first time in its history mankind will take its fate into 
its own hands. Instead of destroying innumerable human lives and incalculable 
wealth in struggles between classes and nations, mankind will devote all its 
energy to the struggle against the forces of nature, to the development and 
strengthening of its own collective might. 

After abolishing private ownership in the means of production and converting 
them into social property, the world system of communism will replace the 
elemental forces of the world market, of competition and the blind process of 
social production, by consciously organized and planned production for the pur- 
pose of satisfying rapidly growing social needs. With the abolition of competi- 
tion and anarchy in production, the devastating crises and still more devastating 
wars will disappear. Instead of colossal waste of productive forces and spas- 
modic development of society there will be planned utilization of all material 
resources and painless economic development on the basis of the unlimited, 
harmonious and rapid development of the productive forces. 

The abolition of private property and the disappearance of classes will do 
avray with the exploitation of man by man. Work Vtill cease to be toiling for 
the benefit of a class enemy. Instead of being merely a means of livelihood 
it will become a necessity of life. Want and economic inequality, the misery 
of enslaved classes, and a wretched standard of life genei'ally will disappear; 
the hierarchy created in the division of labor sy.stem will be abolished together 
with the antagonism between mental and manual labor, and the last vestige of 
the social inequality of sexes will be removed. At the same time, the organs of 
class domination, and the state in the first place, will disappear also. The state, 
being the embodiment of class domination, will wither away insofar as classes 
disappear, and with it all measures of coercion will expire. 

With the disappearance of classes the monopoly of education in every form 
will be abolished. Culture will become the acquirement of all and the class 
ideologies of the past will give place to scientific materialist philosophy. Under 
such circumstances, the domination of man over man, in any form, becomes 
Impossible, and a great field will be opened for the social selection and the 
harmonious development of all the talents inherent in humanity. 

In communist society no social restrictions will be imposed upon the growth 
of the forces of production. Private ownership in the means of production, the 
selfish lust for profits, the artificial retention of the masses in a state of ignor- 
ance, poverty — which retards technical progress in capitalist society— and unpro- 
ductive expenditures will have no place in a communist society. Tlie most 
expedient utilization of the forces of nature and of the natural conditions of 
production in the various parts of the world; the removal of the antagonism 
between town and country that under capitalism results fi-om the low technical 
level of agriculture and its systematic lagging behind indu.stry ; the closesC 
possible cooperation between science and technics, the utmost encouragement of 


research work and the practical application of its results on the widest possible 
social scale, planned organization of scientific work ; the application of the most 
perfect methods of statistical accounting and planned regulation of economy. 
the rapidly growing social needs, which is the most powerful internal driving 
force of the whole system — all these will secure the maximum productivity of 
social labor, which in turn will release human energy for the powerful develop- 
ment of science and art. 

The development of the productive forces of world communist society will 
make it possible to raise the well-being of the whole of humanity and to reduce 
to a minimum the time devoted to material production and, consequently, will 
enable culture to flourish as never before in history. This new culture of a 
humanity that is united for the first time in history, and has abolished all 
state boundaries, will, unlike capitalist culture, be based upon clear and trans- 
parent human relationships. Hence, it will bury forever all mysticism, religion, 
prejudice and superstition and will give a powerful impetus to the development 
of all-conquering scientific knowledge. 

This higher stage of communism, the stage in which communist society has 
already developed on its own foundation, in which an enormous growth of 
social productive forces has accompanied the manifold development of mail, in 
which humanity has already inscribed on its banner: "From each according 
to his abilities ; to each according to his needs !" — presupposes, as a preliminary 
iiistorical condition, a lower stage of development, the stage of socialism. At 
this lower stage, communist society only just emerges from capitalist society 
and bears all the economic, ethical and intellectual birthmarks it has inherited 
from the society from whose womb it is just emerging. The productive forces 
of socialism are not yet sufficiently developed to assure a distribution of the 
produces of labor according to needs; these are distributed according to the 
amount of labor expended. Division of labor, i.e., the system whereby certain 
groups perform certain labor functions, and especially the distinction between 
mental and manual labor, still exists Although classes are abolished, traces 
of the old class division of society, and, consequently, remnants of the pro- 
letarian state power, coercion, laws, still exist. Consequently, certain traces 
of inequality, which have not yet managed to die out altogether, still remain. 
The antagonism between town and country has not yet been entirely removed. 
But none of these survivals of former society is protected or defended by an.y 
social force. Being the product of a definite level of development of produc- 
tive forces, they will disappear as rapidly as mankind, freed from the fetters 
of the capitalist system, subjugates the forces of nature, re-educates itself in 
the spirit of communism, and passes from socialism to complete communism. 

chapter four 

The Period of Transition From Capitalism to Socialism and the; Dictator- 
ship OF the Proletariat 

1. The Transition Period and the Conquest of Potver by the Proletariat 

Between capitalist society and communist society a period of revolutionary 
transformation intervenes, during which the one changes into the other. Cor- 
respondingly, there is also an intervening period of political transition, in whi-'-h 
the essential state form is the revolutionary dictatorship of the pi-oletariat. 
The transition from the world dictatorship of imperialism to the world dictator- 
ship of the proletariat extends over a long period of proletarian struggles with 
defeats as well as victories; a period of continuous general crisis in capitalist 
relationships and the maturing of socialist revolutions, i.e., of proletarian civil 
wars against the bonrgeoisie; a period of national wars and colonial rebellions 
which, although not in themselves revolutionary proletarian socialist move- 
ments, are nevertheless, objectively, insofar as the,y undermine the domination 
of imperialism, constituent parts of the world proletarian revolution; a period 
in which capitalist and socialist economic and social systems exist side by side 
in "peaceful" relationship as well as in armed conflict ; a period of formation of 
a Union of Soviet Republics ; a period of wars of imperialist states against Soviet 
states ; a period in which the ties between the Soviet states and colonial peoples 
become more and more closely established, etc. 

Uneven economic and political development is an absolute law of capitalism. 
This uneveiiness is still n)ore pronounced and acute in the epoch of imperialism. 
Hence, it follows that the international proletarian revolution cannot be con- 
ceived as a single event occuring simultaneously all over the world ; at first 


.socialism may be victorious in a few, or even in one single capitalist country. 
Every such proletarian victory, however, broadens the basis of the world revo- 
lution and, conse(iuently, still further intensifies the general crisis of capitalism. 
Thus, the capitalist system as a wh<ile reaches the point of its final collapse; the 
dictatorship of finance capital perishes and gives place to the dictatorship of the 

Bourgeois revolutions brought about the political liberation of a system of 
productive relationships that had already established itself and become economi- 
cally dominant, and transferred political power from the hands of one class of 
exploiters to the hands of another. Proletarian revolution, however, signifies 
the forcible invasion of the proletariat into the domain of property relationships 
of bourgeoise society, the expropriation of the expropriating classes, and the trans- 
ference of power to a class that aims at the radical reconstruction of the eco- 
nomic foundations of society and the abolition of all exploitation of man by man. 
The political domination of the feudal barons was broken all over the world as 
the result of a series of separate bourgeois revolutions that extended over a 
period of centuries. The international proletarian revolution, however, although 
it will not be a single simultaneous act, but on.e extending over a whole epoch, 
nevertheless — -thanks to the closer ties that now exist between the countries of 
the world — will accomplish its mission in a much shorter period of time. Only 
after the proletariat has achieved victory and consolidated its power all over the 
world will a prolonged period of intensive construction of world socialist econ- 
omy set in. 

The conquest of power by the proletariat is a necessary condition precedent to 
the growth of socialist forms of economy and to the cultural growth of the prole- 
tariat, which transforms its own nature, perfects itself for the leadership of 
society in all spheres of life, draws into this process of transformation all other 
classes and thus prepares the ground for the abolition of classes altogether. 

In the struggle for the dictatorship of the proletariat, and later for the trans- 
formation of the .social system, as against the alliance of capitalists and land- 
lords, an alliance of workers and peasants is formed, under the intellectual and 
political hegemony of the former, an alliance which serves as the basis for the 
dictatorship of the proletariat. 

The characteristic feature of the transition period as a w'hole, is the ruthless 
suppression of the resistance of the exploiters, the organization of socialist con- 
struction, the mass training of men and women in the spirit of .socialism and the 
gradual disappearance of classes. Only to the extent that these great historical 
tasks are fulfilled will .society of the transition period become transformed into 
communist society. 

Thus, the dictatorship of the world proletariat is an essential and vital con- 
dition precedent to the transition of world capitalist economy to socialist economy. 
This world dictatorship can be established only when the victory of socialism 
has been achieved in certain countries or groups of coiuitries, when the newly 
established proletarian republics enter into a federative union with the already 
existing proletarian republics, when the number of such federations lias grown 
and extended also to the colonies which have emancipated themselves from the 
yoke of imperialism ; when these federations of republics have finally grown into 
a World Union of Soviet Socialist Republics uniting the whole of mankind under 
the hegemony of the international proletariat organized as a state. 

The conquest of power by the proletariat does not mean peacefully "capturing" 
the ready-made bourgeois state machinery by means of a parliamentary majority. 
The bourgeoisie resorts to every means of violence and terror to safeguard and 
strengthen its predatory property and its political domination. Like the feudal 
nobility of the past, the bourgeoisie cannot abandon its historical position to 
the new class without a desperate and frantic struggle. Hence, the violence of 
the bourgeoisie can be suppressed only by the stern violence of the proletariat. 
The conquest of power by the proletariat is the violent overthrow of bourgeois 
power, the destriiction of the capitalist state apparatus (bourgeois armies, police, 
bureaucratic hierarchy, the .iudiciary, parliaments, etc.). and sub.stituting in its 
place new organs of proletarian power, to serve primarily as instruments for the 
suppression of the exploiters. 

2. The Dictafnrship of the Proletariat and It.i Soviet Form 

As has been shown by the experience of the October revolution of 1917 and by 
the Hungarian revolution, which immeasurably e))larged the experience of the 
Paris Commune of 1871, the most suitable form of the proletarian state is the 


Soviet state — a new type of State, which differs in principle from the bourgeois 
state, not only in its class content, but also in its internal structure. This is 
precisely the type of State which, emerging as it does directly out of the broadest 
possible mass movement of the toilers, secures the maximum of mass activity and 
is, consequently, the surest guarantee of final victory. 

The Soviet form of state, being the highest form of democracy, namely, prole- 
tarian democracy, is the very opposite of bourgeois democracy, which is bourgeois 
dictatorship in a masked form. The Soviet state is the dictatorship of the prole- 
tariat, the rule of a single class — the proletariat. Unlike bourgeois democracy, 
proletarian democracy openly admits its class character and aims avowedly at 
the suppression of the exploiters in the interests of the overwhelming majority of 
the population. It deprives its class enemies of political rights and, under special 
historical conditions, may grant the proletariat a number of temporary advan- 
tages over the diffused petty-bourgeois peasantry in order to strengthen its role 
of leader. While disarming and suppressing its class enemies, the proletarian 
state at the same time regards this deprivation of political rights and partial 
restriction of liberty as temporary measures in the struggle against the attempts 
on the part of the exploiters to defend or restore their privileges. It inscribes 
on its banner the motto : the proletariat holds power not for the purpose of it, not for the purpose of protecting narrow craft and professional 
interests, but for the purpose of uniting the backward and scattered rural prole- 
tariat, the semi-proletariat and the toiling peasants still more closely with the 
most progressive strata of the workers, for the purpose of gradually and sys- 
tematically overcoming class divisions altogether. Being an all-embracing form 
of the unity and organization of the masses under the leadership of the prole- 
tariat, the Soviets, in actual fact, draw the broad masses of the proletariat, the 
peasants and all toilers into the struggle for socialism, into the work of building 
up socialism, and into the pi-actical administration of the state: in the whole of 
their work they rely upon the working-class organizations and practice the prin- 
ciples of broad democracy among the toilers to a far gi'eater extent and im- 
measurably closer to the masses than any other form of government. The right 
of electing and recalling delegates, the combination of the- executive with the 
legislative power, the electoral system based on a production and not on a resi- 
dential qualification (election by workshops, factories, etc.) — all this secures 
for the working class and for the broad masses of the toilers who march under 
Its hegemony systematic, continuous and active pafticipation in all public 
affairs — economic, social, political, military and cultural — and marks the sharp 
difference that exists between the bourgeois-parliamentary republic and the Soviet 
dictatorship of the proletariat. 

Bourgeois democracy, with its formal equality of all citizens before the law, 
is in reality based on a glaring material and economic inequality of classes. By 
leaving inviolable, defending and strengthening the monopoly of the capitalist 
and landlord classes in the vital means of production, bourgeois democracy, as 
far as the exploited classes and especially the proletariat is concerned, converts 
this formal equality before the law and these democratic rights and liberties, 
vrhich in practice are systematically curtailed, into a juridical fiction and, conse- 
quently, into a means for deceiving and enslaving the masses. Being the ex- 
pression of the political domination of the bourgeoisie, so-called democracy is 
therefore capitalist democracy. By depriving the exploiting classes of the means 
of production, by placing the monopoly of these means of production in the hands 
of the proletariat as the dominant class in society, the Soviet state first foremost 
guarantees to the working class and to the toilers generally the material condi- 
tions for the exercise of their rights by providing them with premises, public 
buildings, printing plants, traveling facilities, etc. 

In the domain of general political rights the Soviet state, while depriving the 
exploiters and the enemies of the people of political rights, completely abolishes 
for the first time all inequality of citizenship, which under systems of exploita- 
tion is based on distinctions of sex, religion and nationality; in this sphere it 
establishes an equality that is not to be found in any bourgeois country. In 
this respect, also, the dictatorship of the proletariat steadily lays down the 
material basis upoii which this equality may be truly exercised by introducing 
measures for the emancipation of women, the industrialization of former colonies, 

Soviet democracy, therefore, is proletarian democracy, democracy of the toiling 
mafiscs, democracy directed agaii^^f the exploiters. 

The Soviet state completely disarms the bourgeoise and concentrates all arms 
in the hands of the proletariat ; it is the armed proletarian state. The armed 


toroes under the Soviet state are organized on a class basis, which corresponds 
to the general structure of the proletarian dictatorship, and guarantees the 
role of leadership to the industrial proletariat. This organization, while main- 
taining revolutionary discipline, ensures to the warriors of the Red Army and 
Navy close and constant contacts with the masses of the toilers, participation 
in the administration of the country and in the work of biiilding up socialism. 

d. The Dictatorsli i I) of the J'roletariut and the Expropriation of the Expropriators 

The victorious proletariat utilizes the conquest of power as a lever of economic 
revolution, /. e., of the revolutionary transformation of the property relations of 
capitalism into relationships of the socialist mode of production. The starting 
point of this great economic revohition is the expropriation of the landlords and 
capitalists, i. c, the conversion of the monopolistic property/ of the bouriieoisie 
into the property of the proletarian state. 

In this sphere the Conuuunist International advances the following funda- 
mental tasks of the proletarian dictatorship: 

.1. Indiisfii/, Transport and Conitniinication Services: 

A. The conliscation and proletarian nationalization of all large private capitalist 
luidertakings (factories, plants, mines, electric power stations) and the trans- 
ference of all state and municipal enterprises to the Soviet. 

B. The confiscation and proletarian nationalization of private capitalist rail- 
way, waterway, automobile and air transport services (commercial and passen- 
ger air fleet) and the transference of all state and municipal transport services 
to the Soviets. 

c. The confiscation and proletarian nationalization of private capitalist com- 
munication services (telegraphs, teleiihones and wireless) and the transference 
of state and nninicii)al communication services to the Soviets. 

D. The organization of workers' management of industry. The establishment 
of state organs for the management of industry with provision for the close 
participati(m of the trade unions in this work of management. Appropriate func- 
tions to be guaranteed for the factory and plant committees. 

E. Industrial activity to be directed towards the satisfaction of the needs of 
the broad masses of the toilers. The reorganization of the branches of industry 
that formerly served the needs of the ruling class (luxury trades, etc.). The 
strengthening of the branches of industry that will facilitate the development of 
agriculture, with the object of strengthening the ties between industry and peas- 
ant economy, of facilitating the development of State farms, and of accelerating 
the rate of development of national economy as a whole. 

B. Agriculture: 

A. The confiscation and pi'oletarian nationalization of all large landed estates 
in town and country (private, church, monastery and other lands) and the trans- 
ference of State and municipal landed property including forests, minerals, lakes, 
rivers, etc., to the Soviets with subseqtient nationalization of the whole of the 

B. The confiscation of all property utilized in production belonging to large 
landed estates, sitch as buildings, machinery and other inventory, cattle, enter- 
prises for the manufacture of agricultural products (large Hour mills, cheese 
plants, dairy farms, frtiit and vegetable drying plants, etc.). 

c. The transfer of large estates, particularly model estates and those of con- 
siderable economic importance, to the management of the organs of the proletarian 
dictatorship and of the Soviet farm organizations. 

D. Part of the land confiscated from the landlords and others, particularly 
where the land was cultivat(Hl liy the peasants on a tenant basis and served as 
a means of holding the peasantry in economic bondage, to be transferred to the 
use of the i>easantry (to the poor and partly also the middle peasantry). The 
amount of land to be so transferred to be determined by economic expediency as 
well as by the degree of necessity to neutralize the peasantry and to win them 
over the side of the proletariat: this amount nuist necessarily vary according to 
the different circumstances. 

E. Prohibition of buying and selling of land, as a means of preserving the land 
for the peasantry and preventing its passing into the bands of capitalists, land 
speculators, etc. Violations of this law to be energetically combatted. 

F. To combat usury. All transactions entailing terms of bondage to l)e an- 
nulled. All debts of the exploited strata of the peasantry to be aimulled. The 
poorest stratum of the peasantry to be relieved from taxation, etc. 

!»40r!l--40— .Tpp.. pt. 1 n 


G. Comprehensive state measures for developing tlie productive forces of agri- 
culture, the development of rural electrification : the manufacture of tractors, the 
production of artificial fertilizers ; the production of pure quality seeds and raising 
thoroughbred stock on Soviet farms; the extensive organization of agricultural 
credits for land reclamation, etc. 

H. Financial and other support for agricultural co-operatives and for all forms 
of collective production in the rural districts (co-operative societies, communes, 
etc.). Systematic propaganda in favor of peasant co-operation (selling, credit 
and supply co-operative societies) to be based on the mass activity of the peasants 
themselves ; propaganda in favor of the transition to large-scale agricultural pro- 
duction which — owing to the indubitable technical and economic advantages of 
large-scale production — provide the greatest immediate economic gain and also 
a method of transition to socialism most accessible to the broad masses of the 
toiling peasants. 

C. Trade and Credit: 

A. The proletarian nationalization of private banks (the entire gold reserve, 
all securities, deposits, etc., to be transferred to the proletarian state) ; the pro- 
letarian state to take over state, municipal, etc.. banks. 

B. The centralization of banking : all nationalized big banks to be subordinated 
to the central state bank. 

c. The nationalization of wholesale trade and large retail trading enterprises 
(warehouses, elevators, stores, stocks of goods, etc.), and their transfer to the 
organs of the Soviet state. 

D. Every encouragement to be given to consumers' co-operatives as representing 
an integral part of the distribiiting apparatus, while maintaining uniformity in 
their system of work and securing the active participation of the masses them- 
selves in their work. 

E. Monopoly of foreign trade. 

F. The repudiation of state debts to foreign and home capitalists. 
D. Conditiwis of Ldfe, Labor, etc.: 

A. Reduction of the working day to seven hours, and to six hours in industries 
particularly hainiful to the health of the workers. P^irther reduction of the 
working day and transition to a five-day week in countries with developed pro- 
ductive forces. The regulation of the working day to correspond to the increase 
of the productivity of labor. 

B. Prohibition, as a rule, of night work nnd employment in harmful trades 
for all females. Prohibition of child labor. Prohiliition of overtime. 

c. Special reduction of the work-day for the youth (a maximum six-hour day 
for young persons up to 18 years of age). Socialistic reorganization of the labor 
of young persons so as to combine employment in industry with general and 
political education. 

D. Social insurance in all forms (sickness, old age. accident, unemployment, 
etc.) at state expense (and at the expense of the owners of private enterprises 
where they still exist), insurance affairs to be managed by the insured them- 

E. Comprehensive measures of hygiene; the organization of free medical 
service. To combat social diseases (alcoholism, venereal dieases, tuberculosis, 
etc. ) . 

p. Complete equality between men and women before the law and in social 
life; a radical reform of marital and family laws; recognition of maternity 
as a social function: protection of mothers and infants. Initiation of social 
care and upbringing of infants and children (creches, kindergartens, children's 
homes, etc.). 

The establishment of institutions that will gradually relieve the burden of 
bouse drudgery (public kitchens and laundries) ; and systematic cultural 
struggle against the ideology and traditions of female bondage. 

E. Housififf: 

A. The confi.scation of big housing property. 

B. The transfer of confiscated houses to the administration of the local 

c. The bourgeois residential districts to be settled by workers. 

D. Palaces and large private and public buildings to be placed at the disposal 
of labor organizations. 

E. The carrying out of an extensive program of housing construction. 

F. Nofio7ial and Colonial Questions: 

A. The recognition of the right of all nations, irrespective of race, to com- 
plete self-determination, that is, self-determination inclusive of the right to state 


B The voluntary unification and centralization of tlie military and economic 
forces of all nations liberated from capitalism— for the purpose of fightm^^ 
against imperialism and for building up socialist economy. 

<3. Wide and determined striiggle against the imposition of any kind of limita- 
tion and restriction upon any nationality, nation or race. Complete equality 
for all nations and races. 

D. The Soviet state to guarantee and support with all the resources at its 
command thie national cultures of nations liberated from capitalism while 
carrying out a consistent proletarian policy in the development of the content of 

such cultuiies. . ^ ,^ , 

E. Everj assistance to be rendered to the economic, political and cultura^ 
gi-owth of the formerly oppressed "territories", "dominions" and "colonies", 
with the oJ)ject of transferring them to socialist lines, so that a durable basis 
may be l»M for complete national equality. 

F. To c<ombat all remnants of chauvinism, national hatred, race prejudices 
and other ideological products of feudal and capitalist barbarism. 

G. Means of Ideoloigical Influence: 

A. The nationalization of printing plants. 

B. The monopoly of newspaper and book-publishing. 

c. The nationalization of big cinema enterprises, theatres, etc. 

D. The utilization of the nationalized means of "intellectual production" for 
the most extensive political and general education of the toilers and for the 
building up of a new socialist culture on a proletarian class basis. 

4. The Basis for the Economic Policy of the Proletarian Dictatorship 

In .carrying out all these tasks of the dictatorship of the proletariat, the 
following postulatees must be borne in mind : 

A. The complete abolition of private property in land, and the nationalization 
of the land, camiot be brought about immediately in the more developed 
capitalist countries, where the principle of private property is deep-rooted among 
broad strata of the peasantry. In such countries, the nationalization of all the 
land can only be I)rought about gradually, by means of a series of transitional 

B. Nationalization of production should not, as a rule, be applied to small and 
middle-sized enterprises (peasants, small artisans, handicraft, small and 
mediitm shops, small manufacturers, etc.). First, because the proletariat must 
draw a strict distinction between the proiierty of the small commodity producer 
workmg for him.self. who can and must be gradually brought into the groove of 
socialist construction, and the property of the capitalist exploiter, the liquidation 
of which is an indispensible prerequisite for socialist construction. 

Second, because the proletariat, after seizing power, may not have sufficient 
organisizing foz-ces at its disix)sal, particularly in the first phases of the dic- 
tatorship, for the purpose of destroying capitalism and at the same time to 
establish contacts with the smaller and medium individual units of production 
'Oil a s<;»cialist basis. These small individual enterprises (primarily peasant 
entei-prise^) will be drawn into the general socialist organization of production 
and distribution only gradually, with the powerful and systematic aid the 
proletarian state will render to organize them in all the various forms of col- 
lective enterprises. Any attempt to break up their economic system violently 
and to compel them to adopt collective methods by force would only lead to 
harmful results. 

c. Owing to the prevalence of a large number of small units of production 
(primarily peasant farms, farmers' enterprises, small artisans, small shop- 
keepers, etc.) in colonies, semi-colonies and economically backward countries, 
where the petty-bourgeois masses represent the overwhelming majority of the 
population, and even in the centers of the capitalist world economy (the United 
States of America, Germany, and to some degree also England), it is necessary, 
in the first stage of development, to preserve to some extent, market forms of 
economic contacts, the money system, etc. The variety of prevailing economic- 
forms (ranging from socialist large scale industry to small peasant and artisan 
enterprises), which unavoidably come into conflict with each other; the variety 
of classes and class groups corresponding to this variety of economic forms,, 
each having different stimuli for economic activity and conflicting class interests 
and finally, the prevalence in all spheres of economic life of habits and tradi- 
tions inherited from bourgeois society, which cannot be removed all at once. — 
/ill this demands that the proletariat, in exercising its economic leadership. 


shall properly combine, on the basis of market relationship, large-scale socialist 
industry with the small enterprises of the simple commodity producers, i. e., 
it must combine them in such a way as to guarantee the leading i-ole to socialist 
Industry and at the same time bring about the greatest possible development 
of the mass of peasant enterprises. Hence, the greater the weight of scattered 
small peasant labor in the general economy of the country, the greater will be 
the scope of the market relations, the smaller will be the significance of direct, 
planned management, and the greater will be the degree to which the general 
economic plan will depend upon an estimation of the xmcontrollable economic 
relations. On the other hand, the smaller the weight of petty husbandry and 
the greater the proporti(»n of .socialized labor, the more powerful the concen- 
trated and socialized means of production, the smaller will be the scope of the 
market relations, the greater will be the importance of plaiuied management 
as compared with the uncontrolled economic activities, and the more consider- 
able and univer.sal will be the application of planned nuinagenient in the sphere 
of production and distribution. 

Provided the proletarian dictator.ship carries out a correct class policy, /. c., 
provided proper account is taken of clas.s-relationshii>s, the technical and eco- 
nomic superiority of large-scale socialized production, the centralization of all 
the most imiwrtant economic key positions (industry, tran.siiort, large-scale 
agricultural enterprises, banks, etc. ) in the hands of the proletarian state, 
planned management of industry, and the power wielded by the state apparatus 
as a whole (the budget, taxes, administrative legislation and legislation gener- 
ally), render it possible continuously and systematically to dislodge private 
•capital as well as the new outcrops of capitalism which, on the basis of more 
•or less free trading and of the market relations, emerge in town and country 
■with the development of simple comnifMlity production (big fanners, kulaks). 
At the same time, by organizing peasant farming on co-operative lines, and as 
i\ result of the growth of collective forms of economy, the great bulk of the 
peasant enterprises will be .systematically drawn into the main channel of 
developing socialism. The oiitwardly capitalist forms and methods of eco- 
nomic activity that are bound up with market relations (money form of ac- 
counting, payment for labor in money, buying and selling, credit and banks, 
etc.), serve as levers for the socialist transformation insofar as they to an 
increasing degree serve the consistently socialist type of enterprises, /. e., the 
socialist section of economy. 

Thus, provided the state carries out a correct policy, the market relations 
under the proletarian dictatorship destroy themselves in the process of their 
•own development by helping to dislodge private capital, by changing the char- 
acter of peasant economy, by further centralization and concentration of the 
means of production in the hands of the proletarian state; by these means they 
help to destroy market relations altogether. 

In the event of probable capitalist military intervention, and of prolonged 
counter-revolutionary wars against the dictatorship of the proletariat, the 
necessity may arise for a war-Communist economic policy (War Communism), 
which is nothing more nor less than the organization of rational consumption 
for the purpose of military defense, accompanied by a system of intensified 
pressure upon the capitalist groups (confiscation, requisitions, etc.), with the 
more or less complete liquidation of freedom of trade and market relations and 
a sharp interference with the individualistic, economic stimuli of the small 
producers, which results in a diminution of the productve forces of the country. 
This policy of War Conununism. while it luidermines the material basis of the 
strata of the population of the country that are hostile to the working class, 
secures a rational distribution of the available supplies and facilitates the 
military struggle of the proletarian dictatorship, which is the historical justifi- 
cation of this policy, it nevertheless cannot be regarded as the "normal" eco- 
nomic policy of the proletarian dictatorship. 

5. Dictatorship of the Proletariat and the Classes 

Tiie dictatorship of the proletariat is a eontiniiation of the class striiof/le 
under new conditions. The dictatorship of the proletariat is a stubborn fight — 
bloody and bloodless, violent and peaceful, military and economic, pedagogical 
iind administrative, — against the forces and traditions of the old society, 
against external capitalist enemies, against the remnants of the exploiting 
classes within the country, against the upshoots of the new bourgeosie that 
spring up on the basis of still existing commodity production. 


After the civil war has been broxight to an end the stubborn class struggle 
continues in new forms, primarily in the form of a struggle between the sur- 
vivals of previous economic systems and fresh upshoots of them on the one 
hand, and socialist forms of economy on the othei-. The forms of the struggle 
undergo a change at various stages of socialist development, and in the first 
stages, the struggle, under certain conditions, may be extremely severe. 

In the initial stage of the proletarian dictatorship, the policy of the prole- 
tariat towards other classes and social groups within the country is determined 
by the following postulates : 

A. The Up honrgcoKic and the lando'wners, a section of the officer corps, the 
higher command of the forces, and the higher bureaucracy — who remain loyal 
to the bourgeosie and the landlords — are consistent enemies of the working 
class against whom ruthless war must be waged. The organizing skill of a 
certain section of these strata may be utilized, but as a rule, only after the 
dictatorship has been consolidated and all conspiracies and rebellions of ex- 
ploiters have been decisively crushed. 

B. In regard to the technical i)itelUf/entsia, which was brought up in the 
spirit of bourgeois traditions and the higher ranks of which were closely linked 
up with the commanding apparatus of capital, the proletariat, while ruth- 
lessly suppressing every coiuiter-revolutionary action on the part of hostile 
sections of the intelligentsia, must at the same time give consideration to the 
necessity of utilizing this skilled social force for the work of socialist con- 
struction ; it must give every encouragement to the groups that are neutral, 
and especially to those that are friendly, towards the proletarian revolution. 
In widening the economic, technical and cultural perspective of socialist con- 
struction to its utmost social limits, the iiroletariat must systematically win 
over the technical intelligentsia to its side, subject it to its ideological influence 
and secure its close co-operation in the work of social reconstruction. 

c. In regard to the peasoHtrij, it is tb.e task of the Communist Party, while 
placing its reliance in the agricultui'al proletariat, to win over all the exploited 
and toiling strata of the countr.vside. The victorious proletariat must draw 
strict distinctions between the various groups among the peasantry, weigh their 
relative importance, and render every support to the propertyless and semi- 
proletarian sections of the peasantry by transferring to them a part of the 
land taken from the big landowners, by helping them in theii' struggle against 
usurer's capital, etc. Moreover, the proletariat must neutralize the middle 
strata of the peasantry and mercilessly suppress the slightest opposition on the 
I)art of the village I)ourgeoisie who ally themselves with the landowners. As 
its dictatorship becomes consolidated and socialist constniction develops, the 
proletariat nnist proceed from the policy of neutralization to a policy of durable 
alliance witli the masses of middle pea.santry, but must not adopt the viewpoint 
of sharing power in any form. The dictatorship of the proletariat implies that 
the industrial workers alone are capable of leading the entire mass of the toilers. 
On the other hand, while representing the rule of a single class, the dictator- 
ship of the proletariat at the same time represents a special form of class 
alliance between the proletariat, as the vanguard of the toilers, and the 
numerous non-proletarian sections of the toiling masses, or the majority of 
them. It represents an alliance for the complete overthrow of capital, for the 
complete suppression of the opposition of the bourgeoisie and its attempts at 
restoration, an alliance aiming at the complete building up and consolidation 
of socialism. 

D. The urban pctti/ hoiin/eoisie, which continuously wavers between extreme 
reaction and sympathy for tlie proletariat, must likewise be neutralized and, 
as far as possible, won over to the side of the proletariat. This can be achieved 
by leaving to them theii- small property and permitting a certain measure of 
free ti-ade, by releasing them from the bondage of usurious credit and by the 
proletariat's helping them in all sorts of ways in the struggle against all and 
every form of capitalist oppression, 

G. jl/a.s'.s^ Organizations iyi the f^iistcin of Proletariaii Dictatorship 

In the process of fulfilling tliese tasks of the proletarian dictator.ship, a radi- 
cal change takes place in the tasks and functions of the mass organizations, 
particularly of the tahor organizations. Under capitalism, the mass labor or- 
ganizations, in which the broad masses of the proletariat were originally 
organized and trained, i.e., the trade (industrial) unions, served as the prin- 
cipal weapons in the struggle against trustified capital and its state. Under 


the proletarian dictatorship, they become transformed into the principal lever 
of the state; thej- become transformed into a school of communism, by means 
of which vast masses of the pi-oletariat are drawn into the work of socialist 
management of production; they are transformed into organizations directly 
connected with all parts of the state apparatus, influencing all branches of its 
■work, safeguarding the lasting as well as the day to day interests of the 
working class and fighting against bureaucratic distortions in the organs of the 
Soviet state. Thus, insofar as they promote from their ranks leaders in tlie 
work of construction, draw into this work of construction broad sections of the 
proletariat and particularly as they undertake the task of combating bureau- 
cratic distortions which inevitably arise as a result of the operation of class 
influences alien to the proletariat and of the inadequate cultural development 
of the masses, the trade unions become the backbone of the proletarian economic 
and state organization as a whole. 

Notwithstanding reformist Utopias, worki)i[/ chhsu co-operatwe organizations 
under capitalism are doomed to play a very minor role and in the general 
environment of the capitalist system not infrequently degenerate into mere 
appendages of capitalism. Under the dictatorship of the proletariat, however, 
these organizations can and must become the most important units of the 
distributing apparatus. 

Lastly, peasmit agricultural co-operative organ izationn (selling, purchasing, 
credit and producing), under proper management and provided a systematic 
struggle is carried on against the capitalist elements, and that really broad 
masses of the toilers who follow the lead of the proletariat take a really active 
part in their work, can and must become one of the principal organizational 
means for linking up town and country. To the extent that they were able 
to maintain their existence at all under capitalism, co-operative peasant enter- 
prises inevitably became transformed into capitalist enterprises, for they were 
dependent upon" capitalist industry, capitalist banks and upon capitalist eco- 
nomic environment, and were led by reformists, the peasant bourgeoisie, and 
sometimes even by landlords. Under the dictatorship of the proletariat, how- 
ever, such enterprises develop amidst a different system of relationships, they 
depend upon proletarian industry, proletarian banks, etc. Thus, provided the 
proletariat carries out a proper policy, provided the class struggle is system- 
atically conducted against the capitalist elements outside as well as inside the 
co-operative organizations, and provided socialist industry exercises its guid- 
ance over it, agricultural co-operation will become one of the principal levers 
for the socialist transformation and collectivization of the countryside. All 
this, however, does not exclude the possibility that in certain countries the 
consumers' societies, and particularly the agricultural co-operative societies led 
by the bourgeoisie and their Social-Democratic agents, at first be hotbeds of 
counter-revolutionary activity and sabotage against the work of economic 
construction of the workers' revolution. 

In the course of this militant and constructive work, carried on through 
the medium of these multifarious proletarian organizations — which should 
serve as effective levers of the Soviet state and the link between it and the 
masses of all strata of the working class — the proletariat secures unity of will 
and action and exercises this unity through the medium of the Communist 
Party, which plays the leading role in the system of the proletarian dictatorship. 

The Party of the proletariat relies directly on the trade unions and other 
organizations that embrace the masses of the workers, and through these, relies 
on the peasantry (Soviets, co-operative societies, Young Communist Leagues, 
etc.) ; by means of these levers it guides the whole Soviet system. The pro- 
letariat can fulfill its role as organizer of the new society only if the Soviet 
government is loyally supported by all the mass organizations, only if class 
unity is maintained, and only under the guidance of the Party. 

~. The Dictatorship of the Proletariat and the Cultural Revolution 

The role of organiser of the new human society presupposes that the pro- 
letariat itself will become culturally mature^ that it will transform its own 
nature, that it will continually promote from its ranks increasing numbers of 
men and women capable of mastering science, technics and administration in 
order to build up socialism and a new socialist culture. 

Bourgeois revolution against feudalism presupposes that a new class has arisen 
in the midst of feudal society that is culturally more advanced than the ruling 
class and is already the dominant factor in economic life. The proletarian 


revcihition, however, develops under other conditions. Being economically ex- 
ploited, politically oppressed and culturally downtrodden under capitalism, the 
working class transforms its owai nature only in the course of the transition 
period, only after it lias conquered state poiver, only by destroying the bour- 
geois monopoly of education and mastering all the sciences, and only after it has 
gained experience in great works of construction. The mass awakening of 
communist consciousness, the cause of socialism itself, calls for a mass chunge of 
human nature-, which can be achieved only in the course of the practical move- 
ment, in revolution. Hence, revolution is not only necessary because there is 
no other way of overthrowing the ruling class, but also because, only in the 
process of revolution is the ov^erthroicing class able to purge itself of the dross 
of the old society and become capable of creating a new society. 

In destroying the capit^ilist monoply of the means of production, the working 
class must also destroy the capitalist monopoly of education, that is, it must 
take possession of all of the schools, from the elementary schools to the uni- 
versities. It is particularly important for the proletariat to train members of 
the working class as experts in the sphere of production (engineers, techni- 
cians, organizers, etc.), as well as in the sphere of military affairs, science, art, 
etc. Parallel with this work stands the task of raising the general cultural 
level of the proletarian masses, of improving their political education, of raising 
their general standard of knowledge and technical skill, of training them in 
the methods of public work and administration, and of combating the survivals 
of bourgeois and petty-bourgeois prejudices, etc. 

Only to the extent that the proletariat promotes from its own ranks a body 
of advanced men and women capable of occupying these "key positions" of 
socialist construction and culture, only to the extent that this body grows, and 
draws increasing numbers of the working class into the process of revolutionai*y- 
cultural transformation and gradually obliterates the line that divides the 
proletariat into an "advanced" and a "backward" section will the guarantees 
be created for successful socialist construction and against bureaucratic decay 
and class degeneracy. 

However, in the process of revolution the proletariat not only changes its 
own nature, but also the nature of other classes-, primarily the numerous petty- 
bourgeois strata in town and country and especially the toiling sections of the 
peasantry. By drawing the wide masses into the process of cultural revolu- 
tion and .socialist construction, by uniting and communistically educating them 
with all the means at its disposal, by strongly combating all anti-proletarian and 
narrow craft ideologies, and by persistently and systematically overcoming the 
general and cultural J>ackwardness of the rural districts, the working class, on 
the basis of the developing collective forms of economy, prepares the way for 
the complete removal of class divisions in society. 

One of the most important tasks of the cultural revolution affecting the wide 
mjisses is the task of systematically and unswervingly combating religion — the 
(ipium of the people. The proletarian government must withdraw all state 
support from the church, which is the agency of the former ruling class ; it 
mu.«;t prevent all church interference in state-organized educational affairs, and 
ruthlessly suppress the counter-revolutionary activity of the ecclesiastical or- 
ganizations. At the same time, the proletarian state, while granting liberty 
of worship and abolishing the privileged position of the formerly dominent 
religion, carries on anti-religious propaganda with all the means at its com- 
mand and reconstructs the whole of its educational work on the basis of 
scientifie materiali-sm. 

S. The Struggle for the World Dictatorship of the Proletariat and the Principal 

Types of Revolutions 

The international proletarian revolution represents a combination of processes 
which vary in time and character : purely proletarian revolutions ; revolutions 
of a bourgeois-democratic type which grow into proletarian revolutions ; wars 
for national liberation ; colonial revolutions. The world dictatorship of the 
proletariat comes only as the final result of the revolutionary process. 

The uneven development of capitalism, which became more accentuated in 
the period of imi>erialism, has given to a variety of types of capitalism, 
to different stages of ripeness of capitalism in different countries, and to a 
variety of sijecific conditions of the revolutionary process. These circumstances 
make it historically inevitable that the proletariat will come to power by a 
varifty of ways and degrees of rapidity ; that a number of countries must pass 


through certain transition stages leading to the dictatorship of the proletariat 
and must adopt varied forms of socialist construction. 

The variety of conditions and ways by which the proletariat will achieve 
its dictatorship in the various countries may be divided schematically into 
three main types. 

Countries of highly developed capitalism (United States of America, Germany, 
Great Britain, etc), having powerful productive forces, highly centralized pro- 
duction, with small-scale production reduced to relative insignificance, and a 
long established bourgeois-democratic political system. In such countries the 
fundamental political demand of the program is direct transition to the dic- 
tatorship of the proletariat. In the economic sphere, the most characteristic 
demands are: expropriation of the whole of large-scale industry; organization of 
a large number of state Soviet farms and, in contrast to this, a relatively 
small portion of the land be transferred to the peasantry ; unregulated market 
relations to be given comparatively small scope ; rapid rate of socialist develop- 
ment generally, and of collectivization of peasant farming in particular. 

Countries ivith a medium development o^ capitalism, (Spain, Portugal, Poland, 
Hungary, the Balkan countries, etc. I , having numerous survivals of semi-feudal 
relationships in agriculture, possessing, to a certain extent, the material prerequi- 
sites for socialist construction, and in which the bourgeois-democratic reforms 
have not yet been completed. In some of these countries a process of more or less 
rapid development from bourgeois-democratic revolution to socialist revolution is 
possible. In others, there may be types of proletarian revolutions which will have 
a large number of bourgeois-democratic tasks to fulfill. Hence, in these countries, 
the dictatorship of the proletariat may not come ab(jut at once, but in the process 
of transition from the democratic dictatorship of the proletariat and peasantry to 
the socialist dictatorship of the proletariat ; where the revolution develops directly 
as a proletarian revolution it is presumed that the proletariat exercises leadership 
over a broad agrarian peasant movement. In general, the agrarian revolution 
plays a most important part in these countries, and in some cases a decisive role ; 
in the process of expropriating large landed property a considerable portion of 
the confiscated land is placed at the disposal of the peasantry ; the scope of market 
relations prevailing after the victory of the proletariat is considerable: the task 
of organizing the peasantry along cooperative lines and, later, of uniting them in 
cooperative production, occupies an important place among the tasks of socialist 
construction. The rate of this construction is relatively slow. 

Colonial and semi-colonial countries (China, India, etc.), and dependent coun- 
tries (Argentina, Brazil, etc.), having the rudiments of and in some cases con- 
siderably developed industry, but which in the majority of cases is inadequate for 
independent socialist construction ; with medieval feudal relationship, or "Asiatic 
mode of production" relationships, prevailing in their economics and political 
super-structure: finally, their most important industrial, commercial and lianking 
enterprises, the principal means of transport, the large landed estates (lati- 
fundia), plantations, etc., are concentrated in the hands of foreign imperialist 
groups. The principal tasks in such countries are, on the one hand, to fight 
against feudalism and the pre-capitalist forms of exploitation and to develop 
systematically the peasant agrarian revolution ; on the other hand, to fight against 
foreign imperialism and for national independence. As a rule, transition to the 
dictatorship of the proletariat in these countries will be possible only through 
a series of preparatory stages, at the outcome of a whole period of the trans- 
formation of the bourgeois-democratic revolution into socialist revolution, while 
in the majority of cases, successful socialist construction will be possible only if 
direct support is obtained from the countries in which the proletarian dictatorship 
is established. 

In still more backward countries (as in some parts of Africa) where there are 
no wage workers or very few, where the majority of the population still live in 
tribal conditions, where survivals of primitive, tribal forms still exist, where a 
national bourgeoisie is almost non-existent, where the primary role of foreign 
imperialism is that of military occupation and usurpation of land, the central 
task is to fight for national independence. Victorious national uprisings in these 
countries may open the way for their direct development towards socialism and 
their avoiding the stage of capitalism, provided real, powerful assistance is 
rendered to them by the countries in M'liich the proletarian dictatorship is 

Thus, in the epoch in which the proletariat in the most developed capitalist 
countries is confronted with the task of capturing power, in which the dictatorship 
of the proletariat is already established in the U.S.S.R. and is a factor of world 


siguificance; tlie liberation movements in the colonial and semi-colonial countries, 
which were caused by the penetration of world capitalism, may lead to their 
.socialist development — notwithstanding the immaturity of social relationships in 
these countries taken by themselves — iirovided theij reeeive the ai^sistance and 
support of the proletarian dictatorship and of the international proletarian move- 
ment generally. 

9. The Struggle for the World Proletarian Dictatorship and the Colonial 


The special conditions of the revolutionary struggle prevailing in colonial and 
semi-colonial countries, the inevital)ly long period of struggle required for the 
demo<-ratic dictatorship of the proletariat and the peasantry and for the trans- 
formation of this dictatorship into the dictatorship of the proletariat, and, 
finally, the decisive importance of the national aspects of the struggle, impose 
upon the Comnnmist Parties of these countries a number of special tasks, which 
are preparatory stages to the general tasks of the dictatorship of the proletariat. 
The Communist International considers the following to be the most important 
of these special tasks : 

A. To overthrow the rule of foreign imperialism, of the feudal rulers and of 
the landlord bureaucracy. 

B. To establish the democratic dictatorship of the proletariat and the peasantry 
on a Soviet basis. 

o. Ck)mplete national independence and national unification. 

n. Annulment of state debts. 

K. Nationalization of the large-scale enterprises (industrial, transport, banking 
and others) owned by the imperialists. 

F. The confiscation of landlord, church and monastery lands. The national- 
ization of all the land. 

Ci. Introduction of the eight-hour day. 

H. The organization of revolutionary workers' and peasants' armies. 

In the colonies and semi-colonies where the proletariat is the leader of and 
commands hegemony in the struggle, the consistent bourgeois-democratic revolu- 
tion will grow into proletarian revolution — in proportion as the struggle develops 
and becomes more intense (sabotage by the bourgeoisie, confiscation of the enter- 
pi'ises l)elonging to the sabotaging section of the bourgeoisie, which inevitably 
extends to the nationalization of the whole of large-scale industry). In the 
colonies where there is no proletariat, the overthrow of the domination of the 
imperialists implies the establishment of the rule of people's (peasant) Soviets, 
the confiscation and transfer to the state of foreign enterprises and lands. 

Colonial revolutions and movements for national liberation play an extremely 
important part in the struggle against imperialism and in the struggle for the 
conquest of power by the working class. Colonies and semi-colonies are also 
important in the transition period because they constitute the world rural district 
in relation to the industrial countries, which function, as it were, as the urban 
cenrers of the world. Consequently, the problem of organizing socialist world 
economy, of properly combining industry with agriculture is, to a large extent, 
the problem of the relation towards the former colonies of imperialism. The 
establishment of a fraternal fighting alliance with the masses of the toilers in 
the colonies co)i.stitutes one of the principal tasks lohich the tvorld industrial 
proletariat must fulfill as the leader in the struggle against imperialism. 

Thus, the world revolution in the course of its development, while rousing the 
workers in the imperialist countries for the struggle for the proletarian dictator- 
ship, rouses also hundreds of millions of colonial workers and peasants for the 
struggle against foreign imperialism. In view of the existence of centers of 
socialism represented by Soviet Republics of growing economic power, the colonies 
which break away from imperialism economically gravitate towards and gradu- 
ally combine with the industrial centers of world socialism. Thus, drawn into 
the channel of socialist construction, they skip the further stage of development 
of capitalism as a pi-edominant system, and obtain opportunities for rapid eco- 
nomic and cultural progress. The Peasants' Soviets in the backward ex-colonies 
and the Workers' and Peasants' Soviets in the more developed ex-colonies group 
themselves politically around the centers of proletarian dictatorship, join the 
grt>wing Federation of Soviet Republics, and thus enter the general system of 
the world proletarian dictatorship. 

Socialism, as the new method of production, thus obtains world-wide scope of 



The Diotatorship or the Proletariat in the U. S. S. R. and the iNTsatNA- 

TioNAL SooiAi. Revolution 

1. The Building Up of Socialism in the U. S. S. R. and the Class Struggle 

The principal manifestation of the profound crisis of the capitalist system 
is the division of world economy into capitalist countries on the one hand, and 
countries building up socialism on the other. Therefore, the internal consoli- 
dation of the proletarian dictatorship in the U. S. S. R., the success achieved 
in the work of socialist construction, the growth of the influence and authority 
of the U. S. S. R. among the masses of the proletariat and the oppressed peoples 
of the colonies signify the continuation, strengthening and expansion of the 
international socialist revolution. 

Possessing in the country the necessary and suflScient material prerequisites 
not only for the overthrow of the landlords and the bourgeoisie but also for the 
establishment of complete socialism, the workers of the Soviet Republic, with 
the aid of the international proletariat, heroically repelled the attacks of the 
armed forces of the internal and foreign counter-revolution, consolidated their 
alliance with the bulk of the peasantry and achieved considerable success in the 
sphere of socialist construction. 

The linking up of the proletarian socialist industry with the small peasant 
economy, thus stimulating the growth of the productive forces of agriculture and 
at the same time asuring the leading role to socialist industry ; the collaboration 
of this industry with agriculture, instead of its catering, as was the case under 
capitalism, to the unproductive consumption of parasitic classes ; production, not 
for capitalist profit, but for the satisfaction of the growing needs of the masses 
of the consumers; the growth of the needs of the masses, which in the final 
analysis greatly stimulates the entire productive process ; and finally, the close 
concentration of the economic key positions under the command of the proletrian 
state, the growth of planned management and the more economic and expedient 
distribution of the means of production that goes with it— all this enables the 
proletariat to make rapid progress along the road of socialist construction. 

In raising the level of the productive forces of the whole economy of the 
country, and in steering a straight course for the Industrialization of the 
U. S. S. R. — the rapidity of which is dictated by the international and internal 
situation, the proletariat in the U. S. S. R., notwithstanding the systematic 
attempts on the part of the capitalist powers to org'anize an economic and 
financial boycott against the Soviet Republics, at the same time increases the 
relative share of the socialized (socialist) sector of national economy in the 
total means of production in the country, in the total output of industry and in 
the total trade turnover. 

Thus, with the land nationalized, and with the increasing industrialization of 
the country, the state socialist industry, transport and banking are more and 
more guiding, by the means of the state trade and the rapidly growing coop- 
eratives, the activities of the small and very small peasant enterprises. 

In the sphere of agriculture especially, the level of the forces of production 
is being ratsed amidst the conditions that restrict the process of differentiation 
among the peasantry (nationalization of the land, and consequently, the pro- 
hibition of the sale and purchase of land ; sharply gi'aded progressive taxation ; 
the financing of poor and middle peasants' cooperative societies and producers' 
organizations ; laws regulating the hiring of labor ; depriving the kulaks of cer- 
tain political and public rights ; organizing the rural poor in separate organiza- 
tions, etc.). However, in so far as the productive forces of socialist industry 
have not yet grown sufficiently to provide a broad new technical base for 
agriculture and, consequently, to render possible the immediate and rapid unifi- 
cation of peasant enterprises into Targe social enterprises (collective farms), 
the kulak class, too, grows, establishing economic and, later, also political col- 
laboration with the elements of the so-called "new bourgeoisie". 

Being in command of the principal economic key positions in the country and 
systematically squeezing out the remnants of urban and private capital, which 
has greatly dwindled in the last few years of the New Economic Policy ; re- 
stricting in every way the exploiting strata in the rural districts that arise out 
of the development of commodity and money relationships ; supporting existing 
Soviet farms in the rural districts and establishing new ones ; drawing the bulk 
of the peasant simple commodity producers into the general system of Soviet 


ecouomic organization and, consequently, into the work of socialist construction, 
through the medium of the rapidly growing cooperative movement, which — 
under the proletarian dictatorship and in view of the economic leadership of 
socialist industry — is identical with the development of socialism ; passing from 
the process of restoration to the process of expanded reproduction of the entire 
productive and technical base of the country — the proletariat of the U. S. S. R. 
sets itself, and is already beginning to fulfill, the task of large-scale basic con- 
struction (production of means of production generally, development of heavy 
industry land especially of electrification) and, developing still further, selling, 
buying and credit cooperation, sets itself the task of organizing the peasantry 
in producing cooperatives on a mass scale and a collectivist basis, which calls 
for the powerful material assistance of the proletari'an state. 

Thus socialism — which is already the decisive economic force determining, 
in the main, the entire economic development of the U. S. S. R. — makes still 
further strides in its development and systematically overcomes the diflBculties 
that arise from the petty-bourgeois character of the country and the periods 
of temporarily acute class antagonisms. 

The task of re-equipping industry and of large-scale basic construction must 
give rise to serious difficulties in the path of socialist development which, in 
the last analysis, are to be attributed to the technical and economic backward- 
ness of the country and to the ruin claused in the years of the imperialist and 
civil wars. Notwithstanding this, however, the standard of living of the 
working class and of the broad masses of the toilers is steadily rising and, 
simultaneously with the socialist rationalization and scientific organization of 
industry, the seven-hour day is gradually being introduced, which opens up 
still wider prospects for the improvement of the living and working conditions 
of the working class. 

On the basis of the economic growth of the U. S. S. R. and of the steady 
increase in the relative importance of the socialist sector of its economy; never 
for a moment halting the struggle against the kulaks ; relying upon the rural 
poor and maintaining a firm alliance with the bulk of the middle peasantry, 
the working class, united and led by the Communist Party which has been 
hardened in revolutionary battles, draws increasing masses, scores of millions 
of toilers into the work of socialist construction. The principal means employed 
towards this aim are: the development of broad mass organizations (the Party, 
as the guiding force ; the trade unions, as the backbone of the entire system 
of the proletarian dictatorship ; the Young Communist League ; cooperative 
societies of all types ; working women's and peasant women's organizations ; 
(he various so-called "voluntary societies" ; worker and peasant correspondents' 
societies; sport, scientific, cultural and educational organizations) ; full encour- 
agement of the initiative of the masses and the promotion of fresh strata of 
workers to high posts in all spheres of economy and administi*ation. The 
steady attraction of the masses into the process of socialist construction, the 
constant renovation of the entire state, economic, trade union and Party 
apparatus with men and women fresh from the ranks of the proletariat, the 
systematic training, in the higher educational institutions and at special 
courses, of workers generally and young workers in particular as new, socialist 
experts in all branches of construction — all these together serve as one of the 
principal guarantees against the bureaucratic ossification and social degenera- 
tion of the stratum of the proletariat directly engaged in administration. 

2. The Signipcance of the U. 8. S. R. and Its International 
Revolutionary Duties 

Having defeated Russian imperialism and liberated all the former colonies 
and oppressed nations of the tsai'ist empire, and systematically laying a firm 
foundation for their cultural and political development by industrializing their 
territories ; having guaranteed the juridicial position of the Autonomous Terri- 
tories, Autonomous Republics and Federated Republics in the Constitution of 
the Union and having realized in full the right of nations to self-determination 
— the dictatorship of the proletariat in the U. S. S. R. has thereby secured, not 
only formal, but real equality for the different nationalities of the Union. 

As the land of the dictatorship of the proletariat and of socialist construc- 
tion, the land of great working class achievements, of the union of the workers 
with the peasants and of a new culture marching under the banner of Marxism, 
the U. S. S. R. inevitably becomes the base of the world movement of all op- 
pressed classe,s, the center of international revolution, the greatest factor in 


world history. In the U. S. S. R., the world proletariat for the first time has 
acquired a country that is really its own, and for the colonial movements the 
U. S. S. R. becomes a powerful center of attraction. 

Thus, the U. S. S. R. is an extremely important factor in the general crisis 
■of capitalism, not only because it has dropped cut of the world capitalist system 
and has created a basis for a new socialist system of production, but also 
because it plays an exceptionally great revolutionary role generally; it is the 
international driving force of proletarian revolution that impels the proletariat 
■of all countries to seize power ; it is the living example proving that the working 
class is not only capable of destroying capitalism, but of building up socialism 
as well ; it is the prototype of the fraternity of nationalities in all lands united 
in the world union of socialist republics and of the economic unity of the toilers 
of all countries in a single world socialist economic system that the world 
proletariat must establish when it has captured political power. 

The simultaneous existence of two economic systems — the socialist system 
in the U. S. H. R., and the capitalist system in other countries — imposes on tlie 
proletarian state the task of warding off the blows showered upon it by the 
capitalist world (boycott, blockade, etc.). This also compels it to resort to 
economic maneuvering and to utilize the economic contacts with the capitalist 
countries (with the aid of the monopoly of foreign trade, which is one of the 
fundamental conditions for the successful building up of socialism, and also 
with the aid of credits, loans, concessions, etc.). The principal and fundamental 
line to be followed in this connection must be the line of establishing the widest 
possible contact with foreign countries — within limits determined hv tbfir 
usefulness to the I'. !S. S. R., i. e., primarily for strengthening industry in tlie 
U. S. S. R., for laying the base for its own heavy industry and electrification and 
finally, for the development of its own socialist machine manufacturing in- 
dustry. Only to the extent that the economic indei>endence of the U. S. S. R. 
from the encircling capitalist world is secured can solid guarantees be obtained 
against the danger that socialist construction in the U. S. S. R. may be destroyed 
and that the U. S. S. R. may be transformed into an appendage of the world 
capitalist system. 

On the other hand, notwithstanding their interest in the markets of the 
U. S. S. R., the capitalist states continually vacillate between their commercial 
interests and their fear of the growtli of the U. S. S. R., which means the growth 
of the international revolution. However, tha principal and fundamental 
tendency in the policy of the imperialist powers is to encircle the U. S. S. R. and 
to conduct counter-revQlutionary war against her in order to strangle her 
and to establish a world bourgeois terrorist regime. 

The systematic imperialist attempts politically to encircle the U. S. S. R. and 
the growing danger of an armed attack upon her, do not, however, prevent 
the Communist Party of the Soviet Union — a section of the Communist Inter- 
national and the leader of the proletarian dictatorship in the U. S. S. R. — from 
fulfilling its international obligations and from rendering support to all the 
<)ppressed, to the labor movement in the capitalist countries, to the colonial 
movements against imperialism and to the struggle against national oppres- 
sion in every form. 

3. The Duties of the International Proletariat to the U. 8. S. R. 

In view of the fact that the TJ. S. S. R. is the only fatherland of the interna- 
tional proletariat, the principal bulwark of its achievements and the most 
important factor for its international emancipation, the international pro- 
letariat must on its part facilitate the success of the work of socialist con- 
struction in the U. S. S. R. and defend it against the attacks of the capitalist 
powers by all the means in its power. 

"The world political situation has made the dictatorship of the proletariat 
an immediate issue, and all the events of world politics are inevitably 
concentrating around one central point, nfimely, the struggle of the world 
bourgeoisie against the Soviet Russian Republic, which must inevitably 
group around itself the Soviet movements of the advanced workei's of all 
countries on the one hand, and all the national liberation movements of 
the colonial and oppressed nationalities on the other." {Lenin.) 

In the event of the imperialist states declaring war upon and attacking the 
U. S. S. R., the international proletariat must retaliate by organizing bold and 
determined mass action and struggling for the overthrow of the imperialist 


governments with the slogan of: Dictatorship of the Proletariat and Alliance 

with the U. S. S. R. ...... 

In the colonies, and particularly the colonies of the imperialist country 
attacking the U. S. S. R., every effort must be made to take advantage of the 
diversion of the imperialist military forces to develop an anti-imperialist 
struggle and to organize revolutionary action for the purpose of throwing off 
the vokp of imperialism and of winninj; complete independence. 

The development of socialism in the U. S. S. R. and the growth of its inter- 
national innuence not only rouse the hatred of the capitalist states and the 
Social-Democratic agents against it, but also inspire the toilers all over the 
world with sympathy towards it and stimulate the readiness of the oppressed 
classes of all countries to fight with all the means in their power for the 
land of the proletarian dictatorship, in the event of au imperialist attack 
upon it. 

Thus, the development of the contradictions within modern world economy, 
the development of the general capitalist crisis, and the imperialist military 
attack upon the Soviet Union inevitably lead to a mighty revolutionary outbreak 
which must overwhelm capitalism in a number of the so-called civilized countries, 
unlease the victorious revolution in the colonies, broaden the base of the prole- 
tarian dlctatorsliip to an enormous degree and thus, with tremendous strides, 
bring nearer the final world victoi-y of socialism. 


The Strategy and Tactics of the Communist International in the Struggle 
FOR the Dictatorship of the Proletariat 

1. Ideologies Among the Working Class Inimical to Communism 

In its fight against capitalism for the dictatorship of the proletariat, revolu- 
tionary conuuunism encounters numerous tendencies within the working class 
which to a greater or lesser degree express the ideological suliordination of the 
proletariat to tlie imperialist bourgeoisie, or rellect the ideological influence 
exercised upon the proletariat by the petty bourgeoisie, which at times rebels 
against the .shackles of finance capital, but is incapable of adopting sustained 
and scientifically planned strategy and tactics or of carrying on the struggle in 
an organized manner on the basis of the stern discipline that is characteristic 
of the proletariat. 

The mighty social power of the imperialist state, with its auxiliary apparatus 
 — schools, press, theater and church — is primarily reflected in the existence of 
confessional and reformist tendencies among the working class, which represent 
the main obstacles on the road towards the proletarian social revolution. 

The confessional, religiously tinged, tendency among the working class flnds 
expression in the confessional trade unions, which frequently are directly con- 
nected with corresponding bourgeois political organizations and are affiliated 
with one or other of the church organizations of the dominant class (Catholic 
trade unions, Young Men's Christian As.sociation, Jewish Zionist organizations, 
etc.). All these tendencies, being the most striking ijroduct of the ideological 
captivity of certain strata of the proletariat, in most cases, bear a romantic- 
feudal tinge. By sanctifying all the abominations of the capitalist regime with 
the holy water of religion, and by terrorizing their flock with the spectre of 
punishment in the hereafter, the leaders of these organizations serve as the most 
reactionary agents of the class enemy in the camp of the proletariat. 

A cynically commercial, and imperialistic secular form of subjecting the pro- 
letariat to the ideological influence of the bourgeoisie is represented by contem- 
porary "socialist" reformism. Taking its main gospel from the tablets of 
imperialist politics, its model today is the deliberately anti-socialist and openly 
counter-revolutionary American Federation of Labor. The "ideological" dic- 
tatorship of the servile American trade union bureaucracy, which in its turn 
expresses the "ideological" dictatorship of the American dollar, has become, 
through the medium of British reformism and His Majesty's Socialists of the 
British Labor Party, the most important constituent in the theory and practice 
of international Social-Democracy and of the leaders of the Amsterdam Inter- 
antional, while the leaders of German and Austrian Social-Democracy embellish 
these theories with Marxism phraseology in order to cover up their utter be- 
trayal of Marxism. The principal enemy of revolutionary communism in the 
labor movement, "socialist" reformism, which has a broad organizational base 


in the Social -Democratic Parties and tlirougli these in tlie reformist trade unions, 
stands out in its entire policy and tlieoretical outlook as a force directed against 
the proletaiian revohition. 

In the sphere of foreign, politics, the Social-Democratic Parties actively sup- 
ported the imperialist war on the pretext of "defending the fatherland". Im- 
perialist expansion and "colonial policy'' received their wholehearted support. 
Orientation towards the counter-revolutionary "holy alliance" of imperialist 
powers (the League of Nations), advocacy of "ultra-imperialism", mobilization 
of the masses under pseudo-pacifist slogans, and at the same time, active supiwrt 
of imperialism in its attacks upon the U. S. S. R. and in its preparations for war 
against the U. S. S. R. — are the main features of reformist foreign policy. 

In the sphere of home politics, Social-Democracy has set itself the task of 
directly cooperating with and supporting the capitalist regime. Complete sup- 
port for capitalist rationalization and stabilization, safeguarding of class peace, 
of "industrial peace" ; the policy of linking up the labor organizations with the 
organizations of the employers and with the predatory imperialist state ; the 
practice of so-called "industrial democracy" which in fact means complete sub- 
ordination to trustified capital ; homage to the imperialist state and particularly 
to its false democratic front ; active participation in the building up of the organs 
of the imperialist state — police, army, gendarmerie, its class judiciary; the 
defense of the state against the encroachments of the revolutionary communist 
proletariat and the executioner's role Social-Democracy plays in time of revolu- 
tionary crisis — such is the line of reformist home policy. While pretending to 
conduct the industrial struggle, reformism considers its function in this field 
to be to conduct that struggle in such manner as to guard the capitalist class 
against any kind of shock, or at all events, to preserve the complete inviolability 
of the foundations of capitalist property. 

In the sphere of theory, Social-Democracy has utterly and completely be- 
trayed Marxism, having traversed the road from revisionism' to complete liberal 
bourgeois reformism and avowed social-imperialism ; it has substituted In place 
of the Marxian theory of the contradictions of capitalism, the bourgeois theory 
of its harmonious development : it has pigeonholed the theory of crises and of 
the pauperization of the proletariat ; it has turned the flaming and redoubtable 
theory of class struggle into the mean advocacy of class peace ; it has exchanged 
the theory of growing class antagonisms for the petty-bourgeois fairy-tale about 
the "democratization" of capital; in place of the theory of the inevitability of 
war under capitalism it has substituted the bourgeois deceit of pacifism and the 
lying propaganda of "ultra-imperialism" : it has exchanged the theory of the 
revolutionary downfall of capitalism for the counterfeit coinage of "sound"' 
capitalism transforming itself peacefully into socialism ; it has replaced revolu- 
tion by evolution, the destruction of the bourgeois state by its active upbuilding, 
the theory of proletarian dictatorship by the theory of coalition with the bour- 
geoisie, the doctrine of international proletarian solidarity — by preaching defense 
of the imperialist fatherland ; for Marxian dialetical materialism it has sub- 
stituted the idealist philosophy and is now engaged in picking up the crumbs of 
religion that fall from the table of the bourgeoisie. 

Within Social-Democratic reformism a number of tendencies stand out that 
are characteristic of the bourgeois degeneracy of Social-Democracy. 

Constrnctii-e socialism (MacDonald & Co.) — the very name of which suggests 
the idea of struggle against the revolutionary proletariat and a favorable atti- 
tude towards the capitalist system — continiies the liberal-philanhropic. anti- 
revolutionary and bourgeois traditions of Fabianism (Beatrice and Sydney 
Webb. Bernard Shaw, Lord Oliver, etc.). It repudiates, on principle, the 
dictatorship of the proletariat and the iise of violence in the struggle against 
the bourgeoisie, but it favors violence in the struggle against the proletariat 
and the colonial peoples. Acting as apologist of the capitalist state, "con- 
structive socialism" preaches state capitalism under the guise of socialism, 
denounces, in conjunction with the most vulgar ideologists of imperialism 
in both hemispheres, the theory of the class struggle as "prescientific'' theory, 
and ostensibly advocates a moderate program of nationalization with compensa- 
tion, taxation of land values, inheritance taxes and taxation of surplus profits 
as a means for abolishing capitalism. Being resolutely opposed to the dictator- 
ship of the proletariat in the U. S. S. R., "Constructive* Socialism", in complete 
alliance with the bourgeoise — is an active enemy of the communist proletarian 
movement and of colonial revolutions. 

A special variety of "Constructive Socialism" is "Cooperatism'", or "Coopera- 
tive Socialism'" (Charles Gide, Totomyantz & Co.), which also strongly repudi- 


ates the class struggle and advocates the cooperative organization of consumers 
as a means of overcoming capitalism, but which in fact does all it can to help 
the stabilization of capitalism. Having at its command an extensive propa- 
gandist apparatus, in the shape of the mass consumers' cooperative organiza- 
tions, which it employs for the purpose of systematically influencing the masses, 
"cooperativism" carries on a fierce struggle against the revolutionary labor 
movement, hampers it in the achievement of its aims and represents today one 
of the most potent factors in the camp of the reformist counter-revolution. 

So-called "Guild Socialism' (Penty, Ot*age, Hobson and others) is an eclectic 
attempt to unite "revolutionary" syndicalism with bourgeois-liberal Fabianism, 
anarchist decentralization ("national industrial guilds") with state-capitalist 
centralization, and medieval guild and craft narrowness with modern capitalism. 
Starting out with the ostensible demand for the abolition of the "wage system" 
as an "immoral" institution which must be abolished by means of workers' 
control of industi-y, Guild Socialism completely ignores the most important 
question, viz., the question of power. While striving to unite workers, intel- 
lectuals, and technicians into a federation of national industrial "guilds" and 
to convert these guilds by peaceful means ("control from within") into organs 
for the administration of industry within the framework of the bourgeois state, 
Guild Socialism actually defends the bourgeois state, obscures its class, im- 
perialist and anti-proletarian character and allots tti it the function of the non- 
clas.« representative of the interests of the "consumers" as against the guild- 
organized "producers". By its advocacy of "functional democracy", *. e., repre- 
sentation of classes in capitalist society, each class being presumed to have 
definite social and productive function. Guild Socialism paves the way for the 
fascist "Corporate State". By repudiating both parliamentarism and "direct 
action", the majority of the Guild Socialists doom the working class to inaction 
and passive subordination to the bourgeoisie. Thus, Guild Socialism represents 
a peculiar form of trade unionist Utopian opportunism and, as such, cannot but 
play an anti-revolutionary role. 

Lastly, Aiistro-Marxism represents a special variety of Social-Democratic 
reformism. Being a part of the "Left-wing" of Social-Democracy, Austro- 
]Marxism represents a most subtle deception of the masses of the toilers. 
Prostituting the terminology of Marxism, while divorcing themselves entirely 
from the basic principles of revolutionary Marxism (the Kantism, Machism, 
etc., of the Austro-Marxists in the domain of philosophy), toying with religion, 
borrowing the tiieory of "functional democracy" from the British reformists, 
agreeing with the principle of "building up the Republic", i. e., building up the 
liourgeois state. Austro-Marxism recommends "class cooperation" in periods of 
so-called "equilibrium of class forces", /. e., precisely at the time when the revo- 
lutionary crisis is maturing. This theory is a .iustification of coalition with the 
bourgeoisie for the overthrow of the proletarian revolution under the guise 
of defending "democracy" against the attacks of reaction. Objectively, and in 
practice, the violence which Austro-Marxism admits in cases of reactionary 
attack is converted into reactionary violence against the proletarian revolu- 
tion. Hence, the "functional role" of Austro-Marism is to deceive the workers 
already marching towards Communism, and therefore it is the most dangerous 
enemy of the proletariat, more dangerous than the avowed adherents of 
predatory social-imperialism. 

All the above-mentioned tendencies, being constituent parts of "socialist" 
reformism, are agencies of the imperialist bourgeoisie within the working class 
itself. But Communism has to contend also against a number of petty-bourgeois 
tendencies, which reflect and express the vacillation of the unstable strata 
of society (the urban petty bourgeoisie, the lumpen-proletariat, the declared 
Bohemian intellectuals, the pauperized artisans, certain strata of the peasantry, 
etc. etc.). These tendencies, which are distinguished for their extreme political 
instability, often cover up a Right policy with Left phraseology or drop into 
adventurism, substitiite "radical" political gesticulation for objective estimation 
of forces and often tumble from astounding heights of revolutionary bombast 
to profound depths of pessimism and downright capitulation before the enemy. 
Under certain conditions, particularly in periods of sharp changes in the po- 
litical situation and of forced temporary retreat, these tendencies may become 
very dangerous disrupters of the proletarian ranks and, consequently, a drag 
upon the revolutionary proletarian movement. 

Anarcliism, the most prominent representatives of which (Kropotkin, Jean 
Grave and others) treacherously went over to the side of the imperialist 


bourgeoisie in the war of 1914-1918, denies the necessity for wide, centralized 
and disciplined proletarian organizations and thus leaves the proletariat 
powerless before the powerful organizations of capital. By its advtx;acy of 
individual terror, it distracts the proletariat from the methods of mass organiza- 
tion and mass struggle. By repudiating the dictatorship of the proletariat in 
the name of "abstract" liberty, anarchism deprives the proletariat of its most 
important and sharpest weapon against the bourgeoisie, its armies, and all its 
organs of repression. Being remote from mass movement of any kind in the 
most important centers of proletarian struggle, anarchism is steadily being 
reduced to a sect which, by its tactics and actions, including its opposition to 
the dictatorship of the working class in the U. S. S. R., has objectively joined 
the united front of the anti-revolutionary forces. 

"Revolutionary" syndicalism, many ideologists of which in the extremely 
critical war period went over to the camp of the fascist type of "•anti- 
parliamentary" counter-revolutionaries, or became peaceful reformists of the 
Social-Democratic type, by its repudiation of political struggle (particularly 
of revolutionary parliamentarism) and of the revolutionary dictatorship of the 
proletariat, by its advocacy of the craft decentralization of the labor movement 
generally and of the trade union movement in particular, by its repudiation of 
the need for a proletarian party, and of the necessity of insurrection, and by its 
exaggeration of the importance of the general strike (the "folded-arms tactics"). 
like anarchism, hinders the revolutionization of the masses of the workers 
wherever it has any influence. Its attacks upon the U. S. S. R., which logically 
follow from its repudiation of dictatorship of the proletariat in general, place 
it In this respect on a level with Social-Democracy. 

All these tendencies take a common stand with Social-Dcinocraci/, the prin- 
cipal enemy of the proletarian revolution, on the fundamental political issue, 
viz., the question of the dictatorship of the proletariat. Hence, all of them come 
out more or less definitely in a united front with Social-Democracy against the 
U. S. S. R. On the other hand, Social-Democracy, which has utterly and com- 
pletely betrayed Marxism, tends to rely more and more upon the ideology of the 
Fabians, of the Con.structive Socialists and of the Guild Socialists. 
tendencies are becoming transformed into the official liberal-reformist ideology 
of the bourgeois "socialism" of the Second International. 

In the colonial countries and among the oppressed peoples and races gener- 
ally, communism encounters the influence of peculiar tendencies in the labor 
movement which played a useful role in a definite phase of development, but 
which, in the new stage of development, are becoming transformed into a 
reactionary force. 

Sirfi-Yat-8enisin in China expres.sed the ideology of petty-bourgeois democratic 
"socialism." In the "Three Principles" (nationalism, democracy, socialism), 
the concept "people" obscured the concept "classes" ; socialism was presented, 
not as a specific mode of production, to be realized by a specific class, i. c, by 
the proletariat, but as a vague state of social well-being, the struggle against 
imperialism was not linked up with the perspective of the development of 'the 
class struggle in China. Therefore, while it played a very useful role in the 
first stage of the Chinese revolution, as a consequence of the further process 
of class differentiation that has taken place in the country and of the further 
progress of the revolution, Sun-Yat-Senism has now changed from being the 
ideological expression of the development of that revolution into fetters of its 
further development. The epigones of Sun-Yat-Senism, by emphasizing and 
exaggerating the very features of this ideology that have become objectively 
reactionary, have transformed it into the official ideology of the Kuomintang, 
which is now an openly counter-revolutionary force. The ideological growth of 
Ihe masses of the Chinese proletariat and of the toiling peasantry must therefore 
be accompanied by determined decisive struggle against the Kuomintang decep- 
tion and by opposition to the remnants of the Sun-Yat-Senist ideology. 

Tendencies like Gandhi-ism in India, thoroughly imbued with religious con- 
ceptions, idealize the most backward and economically most reactionary forms 
of social life, see the solution of the social problem not in proletarian socialism, 
but in a reversion to these backward forms, preach passivity and repudiate thi^ 
class struggle, and in the process of the development of the revolution become 
transformed into an openly reactionary force. Gandhi-ism is more and more 
becoming an ideology directed against mass revolution. It must be strongly 
combatted by communism. 

Garveyism, which formerly was the ideology of the Negro small property 
owners and tcorkers in America, and which even now exercises some influence 


over the Negro masses, like Gandhi-ism. has hecome a hindrance to the revolii- 
tionization of the Negro masses. Originally advocating social equalit.v for 
Negroes, Garve.vism snbseqnentl.v developed into a peculiar form of Negro 
Zionism which, instead of fighting American imperialism, advanced the slogan : 
"Back to Africa !'" This dangeroiis ideology, which bears not a single genuine 
democratic trait, and which toys with the aristocratic attributes of a non- 
existent "Negro kingdom", must he strongly resisted, for it is not a help but a 
hindrance to the mass Negro liberation struggle against American imperialism. 
Standing out against all these tendencies is proletarian communism. The 
powerful ideology of the international revolutionary working class differs from 
all these tendencies, and primarily from Social-Democracy, in that in complete 
harmony with the teachings of Marx and Engels, it conducts a theoretical avd 
practical revolutionar)/ striif/gle for the dictatorship of the proletariat, and in 
the strvfigle applies all forms of proletarian mass action. 

2. The Fundamental Tasks of Communist Strategy and Tactics 

The successful struggle of the Communist International for the dictatorship 
of the iiroletariat presupposes the existence in every country of a compact 
Communist Party, hardened in the struggle, disciplined, centralized, clo.'^ely 
linked up with the masses. 

The Party is the vanguard of the working class and consists of the best, 
most class-conscious, most active, and most courageous members of that class. 
It incorporates the whole body of experience of the proletarian struggle. Basing 
itself upon the revolutionary theory of Marxism and representing the general 
and lasting interests of the whole of the working class, the Party personifies 
the unity of proletarian principles, of proletarian will and of proletarian revo- 
lutionary action. It is a revolutionary organization, bound by iron discipline 
and strict revolutionary rules of democratic centralism, which can be carried 
out thanks to the class-consciousness of the proletarian vanguard, to its loyalty 
to the revolution, its ability to maintain unbreakable ties with the proletarian 
masses and to its correct political leadership, which is constantly verified and 
clarified b.v the experiences of the masses themselves. 

In order that it may fulfill its historic mission of achieving the dictatorship 
of the proletariat, the Communist Party must first of all set itself and accom- 
plish the following fundamental strategic aims : 

Extend its influence over the ntajority of memiers of its own class, including 
working women and the working youth. To achieve this the Comnuinist Party 
must secure ijredominant influence in the broad mass proletarian organizations 
(Soviets, trade unions, factory committees, cooperative societies, sport organi- 
zations, cultural organizations, etc.). It is particularly important for the 
purpose of winning over the majority of the proletariat, to gain control of the 
trade unions, which are genuine mass working class organizations closely bound 
up with the every-day struggles of the w<n-king class. To work in reactionary 
trade unions and skillfully to gain control of them, to win the confidence of 
the broad masses of the industriall.v organized workers, to change and "remove 
from their posts" the reformist leaders, represent important tasks in the 
preparatory period. 

The achievement of the dictatorship of the proletariat presupposes also that 
the proletariat has acquired hegemony over vide sections of the toiling masses. 
To accomplish this the Communist Party must extend its influence over the 
masses of the urban and rural poor, over the lower strata of the intelligentsia 
and over the so-called "little man", /. r., the petty-bourgeois strata generally. 
It is particularly important that work be carried on for the purpose of extending 
the Party's influence over the peasantry. The Communist Party must secure 
for itself the whole-hearted support of that stratum of the rural population 
that stands closest to the proletariat, /. e., the agricultural laborers and the 
rural poor. To this end, the agricultural laborers must be organized in separate 
organizations ; all possible support must be given them in their struggles again;:!t 
the rural bourgeoisie, and strenuous work must be carried on among the small 
parcel farmers and small peasants. In regard to the middle strata of the peas- 
antry in developed capitalist countries, the Communist Parties must conduct 
a policy to secure their neutrality. The fulfillment of all these tasks by the 
l)roletariat — the champion of the interests of the whole people and the leader 
of the broad masses in their struggle against the oppression of finance capital — 
is an essential prerequisite for the victorious communist revolution. 
94931 — 40— app., pt. 1 6 


The tasks of the revolutionary struggle in colonies, seniwolonies and de- 
pendencies are extremely important strategic tasks of the Communist Inter- 
national from the standpoint of the world proletarian struggle. The colonial 
struggle presupposes that the broad masses of the working class and of the 
peasantry in the colonies be rallied around the banner of the revolution; but 
this cannot be achieved unless the closest cooperation is maintained between 
the proletariat in the oppressing countries and the toiling masses in the oppressed 

While organizing, under the banner <if the proletarian dictatorship, the revolu- 
tion against imperialism in the so-called civilized states, the Communist Inter- 
national supports every movement against imiK'rialist oppression in the colonies, 
semi-colonies and dependencies (for example in Latin-America) ; it carries on 
propaganda against all forms of chauvinism and against the imperialist mal- 
treatment of enslaved peoples and races, big and small (treatment of Negroes, 
'•yellow labor", anti-Semitism, etc.), and supports their struggles against the 
bourgeoisie of the oppressing nations. The Conununist International e.specially 
combats the chauvinism among the dnmiiiant nations of the great powers, the 
chauvinism fostered by the imperialist bourgeoisie as well as by its Social- 
Democratic agency, the Second International, and constantly holds up in contrast 
to the practices of the imperialist bourgeoisie the practice of the Soviet Union, 
which has established relations of fraternity and equality among the nationalities 
inhabiting it. 

The Communist Parties in the imperialist countries must render systematic aid 
to the colonial revolutionary liberation movement and to the movement of oppressed 
nationalities generally. The duty of rendering active support to these movements 
rests primarily upon the workers in the countries upon which the oppressed na- 
tions are economically, financially or politically dependent. The Communist 
Parties must openly recognize the right of the cohtnies to separation and their 
right to carry on propaganda for this separation, i. e., propaganda in favor of 
the independence of the colonies from the imperialist state ; they must recognize 
their right of armed defense against imperialism (i. c, the right of rebellion and 
revolutionary war) and must advocate and give active support to this defense 
by all the means in their power. The Communist Parties must adopt this line of 
policy in regard to all oppressed nations. 

The Communist Parties in the coloui<i1 <uid semi-coloni-al countries must carry 
on a bold and consistent struggle again.'it foreign im))crialism and unfailingly 
conduct propaganda in favor of friendship and unity with the proletariat in the 
imperialist countries. They nuist openly advance, conduct propaganda for and 
carry out the slogan of agrarian revolution ; they must rovise the broad ma.sses of 
the peasantry for the overthrow of the landlords and combat the reactionary and 
medieval influence of the clergy, of the missionaries and other similar elements. 

In these countries, the principal task i.s to organize the workers and the peasantry 
independcntiii (to establish class Communist Parties of the proletariat, trade 
unions, peasant leagues and committees and, in a revolutionary situation, Soviets, 
etc. t. and to free them from the influence of the national bourgeoisie, with whom 
temporary agreements may be made only on the condition that they, the bourgeoisie, 
do not hamper the revolutionary organization of the workers and peasants, and 
that they carry on a genuine struggle against imperialism. 

In determining its line of tactics, each Communist Party must take into account 
the concrete internal and external situation, the correlation of class forces, the 
degree of stability and strength of the bourgeoisie, the degree of preparedness of 
the proletariat, the position taken up by the various intermediary strata in its 
country, etc. The Party determines its slogans and methods of struggle in accord- 
ance with these circumstances, with the view to organizing and mobilizing the 
masses on the broadest possible scale and on the highest possible level of this 

When a revolutionary situation is developing, the I'arty advances certain transi- 
tional slogans and partial demands corresponding to the concrete situation; but 
these demands and i^logans must be bent to the revolutionary aim of capturing 
power and of overthrowing bourgeois capitalist society. The Party must neither 
stand aloof from the daily needs and struggle of the working class nor confine 
its activities exclusively to them. The task of the Party is to utilize these minor 
tvery-day needs as a startnifj point from which to lead the working class to the 
revolutionary strugfflc for power. 

In the event of a rerolutiomiry upxurge. if the ruling classes are disorganized, 
the mas.'jes are in a state of revolutionary ferment and the intermediary strata 
are inclining towards the proletariat. If the masses are readv for action and for 


saciitice, the Party of the proletariat is confronted with the task of leading the 
masses to a direct attack upon the bourgeois state. This it does by carrying on 
propaganda in favor of increasingly radical transitional slogans (for Soviets, 
workers' control of industry, for peasant connnittees for the seizure of the big 
landed properties, for disarming the bourgeoisie and arming the proletariat, etc.), 
ajid by organizing mass action, upon which all branches of the Party agitation 
and propaganda, including parliamentary activity, must be concentrated. This 
mass action includes : a combination of strikes and demonstrations ; a combination 
o± strikes and armed demonstrations and finally, the general strike conjointly 
with armed insurrection against the state power of the bourgeoisie. The latter 
form of struggle, which is the supreme form, must be conducted according to the 
lules of military science: it presupposes a plan of campaign, offensive fighting 
operations and unboimded devotion and on the part of the proletariat. An 
ab.sclutely essential prerequisite for this form of action is the organization of the 
broad masses into militant units, which, by their very form, embrace and set into 
action the largest possible numbers of toilers (Councils of Workers" Deputies, 
Soldiers' Councils, etc.), and intensified revolutionary work in the army and the 

In passing over to new and more radical slogans, the Parties must be guided by 
the fundamental role of the political tactics of Leninism, which call for ability to 
lead the masses to revolutionary positions in such a manner that the masses may, 
by their own experience, convince themselves of the correctness of the Party line. 
Failure to observe this rule must inevitably lead to isolation from the masses, to 
])Ut.schism, to the indeological degeneration of communism into "Leftist" dog- 
matism and to petty-bourgeois "revolutionary" adventurism. No less dangerous 
is the failure to take advantage of the culminating point in the development of the 
levolutionary situation, when the Party of the proletariat is called upon to conduct 
a bold and determined attack upon the enemy. To allow that opportunity to slip 
by and to fail to start rebellicm at that point, means to allow the initiative to pass 
to the enemy and to doom the revohition to defeat. 

When there is no revolutionary upsurge, the Communist Parties must advance 
partial slogans and demands that correspond to the every-day needs of the toilers, 
linking them up with the fundamental ta.sks of the Communist International. The 
Connnunist Parties must not. however, at such a time, advance transitional slogans 
that are applicable only to revolutionary situations (for example, workers' control 
of industry, etc.). To advance such slogans when there is no revolutionary situa- 
tion means to transform them into slogans that favor merging with the system 
of capitalist organization. Partial demands and slogans generally form an essen- 
tial part of correct tactics ; but certain transitional slogans go inseparably with a 
revolutionry situation. Repudiation of partial demands and transitional slogans 
"on principle", however, in incompatible with the tactical principle of communism, 
for in effect, such repudiation condemns the Party to inaction and isolates it from 
the masses. Throughout the entire pre-revohitionani period a most imiwrtant 
basic part of the tactics of the Communist Parties is the tactic of the nnited front, 
as a means towards most successful struggle against capital, towards the class 
iiiobilization of the masses and the exposure and isolation of the reformist leaders. 

The correct application of united front tactics and the fulfillment of the general 
task of winning over the masses presuppose in their turn systematic and persistent 
work in the trade unions and other mass proletarian organizations. It is the 
boniiden duty of every Communist to belong to a trade union, even a most reac- 
tionary one, provided it is a mass organization. Only by constant and persistent 
work in the trade unions and in the factories for the steadfast and energetic defense 
of the interests of the workers, together with ruthless struggle against the reformist 
bureaucracy, will it be possible to win the leadership in the workers' struggle and 
to win the industrially organized workers over to the side of the Party. 

T'nlike the reformists, whose policy is to split the trade unions, the Communists 
defend trade union vnitii nationally and internationally on the basis of the class 
struggle, and render every support to and strengthen the work of the Red Interna- 
tional of Labor Unions. 

In universally championing the current everyday needs of the masses of the 
workers and of the toilers generally, in utilizing the bourgeois parliament as a 
platform for revolutionary agitation and propaganda, and subordinating the partial 
tasks to the struggle for the dictatorship of the proletariat, the Parties of the Com- 
munist International advance partial demands and slogans in the following main 
spheres : 

In the sphere of lahor, in the narrow meaning of the term. i. c. questions con- 
cerned with the industrial struyyle (the light against the trustified capitalist 


offensive, wage questions, tlie working day, compulsory arbitration, nnemploy- 
meut), wliich firow into questions of the general political struggle (big industrial 
conflicts, tight for the right to organize, right to strike, etc.) : in the sphere of 
politics proper (taxation, high cost of living, fa.scisiu, persecution of revolutionary 
parties. White terror and current politics generally) ; and finally the sphere of 
world politics; viz., attitude towards the U. S. S. R. and colonial revolutions, strug- 
gle for the unity of the international trade union movement, struggle against 
imperialism and the war danger, and systematic prepiiration for the tight against 
imperialist war. 

In the sphere of the peasant problems, the partial demands are those appertain- 
ing to taxation, peasant mortgage indebtedness, struggle against usurer's capital, 
the land hunger of the peasant small holders, rent, the metayer (crop-sharing) 
system. Starting out from these partial needs, the Communist Party must 
sharpen the respective slogans and broaden them out into the slogans : confisca- 
tion of large estates, and workers' and peasants' government (the synonym for 
proletarian dictatorship in developed capitalist countries and for the democratic 
dictatorship of the proletariat and peasantry in backward countries and in 
certain colonies). 

Similarly, systematic work must be carried on among the proletarian and 
peasant yo^ith (mainly through the Young Communist International and its 
Sections) and among working icomcn and peasant women. This work must 
concern itself with the special conditions of life and struggle of the working and 
peasant women, and their demands must be linked up with the general demands 
and fighting slogans of the proletariat. 

In the struggle against colonial oppi'ession, the Communist Parties in the 
colonies must advance partial demands that correspond to the special circum- 
stances prevailing in each country, such as : compieLe equalny lor all uanoiis 
and races ; abolition of all privileges for foreigners ; the right to organize for 
workers and peasants ; reduction of the working day ; prohibition of child labor ; 
prohibition of usury and of all transactions entailing bondage ; reduction and 
abolition of rent ; reduction of taxation ; refusal to pay taxes, etc. All these 
partial slogans must be subordinate to the fundamental demands of the Com- 
munist Parties such as : complete political independence of the country and the 
expulsion of the imperialists, workers' and peasants' government, the land to the 
whole people, eight-hour day, etc. The Communist Parties in imperialist coun" 
tries, while supporting the struggle proceeding in the colonies, must carry on a 
campaign in their own respective countries for the withdrawal of imperialist 
troops, conduct propaganda in the army and navy in defense of the oppressed 
countries fighting for their liberation, mobilize the masses to refuse to transport 
troops and munitions and, in connection with this, to organize strikes and other 
forms of mass protest, etc. 

The Communist International must devote itself especially to systematic prep- 
aration for the struggle against the danger of imperialist wars. Ruthless ex- 
posure of .social-chauvinLsm, of social-imperialism, and of pacifist phrasemonger- 
ing intended to camouflage the imperialist plans of the bourgeoisie ; propaganda 
in favor of the principal slogans of the Communist International ; everyday or- 
ganiz itional work in connection with this, in the course of which work legal 
methods must unfailingly be combined with illegal methods; organized work in 
the army and navy— such must be the activity of the Communist Parties in this 
connection. The fundamental slogans of the Communist International in this 
connection must be the following : Convert imperialist war into civil war ; defeat 
"your own" imperialist government; defend the U.S.S.R. and the colonies by 
every possible means in the event of imperialist war against them. It is the 
bouiiden duty of all Sections of the Communist International, and of every one 
of its members, to carry on propaganda for these slogans, to expose the "social- 
istic" sorhisms and the "socialist" camouflage of the League of Nations and 
constantly to keep to the front the experiences of the war of 1914-1918. 

In order that revolutionary work and revolutionary action may be coordinated 
and in order that these activities may be guided most successfully, the interna- 
tional proletariat must be bound by international class discipline, for which, first 
of all, it is most important to have the strictest international discipline in the 
Communist ranks. 

The international Communist discipline must find expression in the subordina- 
tion of the partial and local interests of the movement to its general and lasting 
interests and in the strict fulfillment, by all members, of the decisions passed by 
the leading bodies of the Communist International. 


Uulike the Social-Democratic, Second International, each section of which 
submits to the discipline of "its own" national bourgeoisie and of its "fatherland", 
the Sections of the Communist International submit to only one discipline, vis., 
international proletarian discipline, which guarantees victory in the struggle of 
the world's workers for world proletarian dictatorship. Unlike the Second 
International, which splits the trade unions, fights against colonial peoples, and 
practices unity with the bourgeoisie, the Communist International is an organiza- 
tion that guards proletarian unity in all countries and the unity of the toilers of 
all races and all peoples in their struggle against the yoke of imperialism. 

Despite the bloody terror of the bourgeoisie, the Communists fight with courage 
and devotion on all sectors of the international class front, in the firm conviction 
that the victory of the proletariat is inevitable and cannot be averted. 

"The Connnunists disdain to conceal their views and aims. They openly 
declare that their aims can be attained, only l>y the foreihle overthroiv of all the 
ea^isting social conditions. Let the ruling class tremble at a ootnmunist revolu- 
tion. The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a tvorld 
to win. 

"Workers of all countries, unite!" 

Constitution of the Communist International 
/. Name and Objects 

1. The Communist International — the International Workers' Association — is 
a union of Communist Parties in various countries ; it is the world Communist 
Party. As the leader and organizer of the world revolutionary movement 
of the proletariat and the protagonist of the principles and aims of Com- 
munism, the Communist International strives to win over the majority of the 
working class and the broad strata of the propertyless peasantry, fights for 
the establishment of the world dictatorship of the proletariat, for the estab- 
lishment of a World Union of Socialist Soviet Ilepublics. for the complete 
abolition of classes and for the achievement of socialism — the first stage of 
communist society. 

2. Each of the various Parties atfiliated to the Communist International 

is called the Communist Party of [name and country] (Section 

of the Communist International). In any given country there can be only 
one Communist Party affiliated to the Communist International and con- 
stituting its Section in that country. 

3. Membership in the Communist Party and in the Conununist International 
is open to all those who accept the program and rules of the respective 
('Ommunist Party and of the Communist International, who join one of the 
basic units of the Party, actively work in it. aliide by all the decisions of 
the Party and of tlie Communist International, and regularly pay Party dues. 

4. The basic unit of the Communist Party organization is the nucleus in 
the place of employment (factory, workshop, mine, oftice, store, farm, etc.) 
which unites all the Party members employed in the given enterprise. 

5. The Communist International and its Sections are built up on the basis 
of democratic centralism, the fundamental principles of which ;are : (a) 
election of all the leading committees of the Party, from the lowest to the 
highest (by general meetings of I'arty members, conferences, congresses and 
international congresses) ; (b) periodical reports by k'ading Party committees 
to their constituents: (c) decisions of the higher Party organs to be ob- 
ligatory for the lower organs, strict Party discipline and prompt execution of 
the decisions of the Communist International, of its leading committees and 
of the leading Party centers. 

Party questions may be discussed by the members of the Party and by 
Party organizations until such time as a decision is taken upon them by 
the competent Party organs. After a decision has been taken by the Congress 
of the Communist International, by the Congress of the respective Sections, 
or by leading committees of the Comintern, and of its various Sections, the 
decision must be unreservedly carried out even if a part of the Party mem- 
bersliip or of the local Party organizations are in disagreement with it. 

In cases where a Party exists illegally, the higher Party committees may 
appoint the lower committees and co-opt members for their own committee, 
subject to subsequent endorsement by the competent higher Party committees. 


6. In all non-Party workers' aud peasants' mass organizations and in their 
leading committees (trade unions, co-operative societies, sport organizations, 
ex-servicemen's organizations, and at their congresses and conferences! and 
also on municipal elective bodies and in parliament, even if there are only 
two Party members in such organizations and bodies. Communist fractions 
must be formed for the purpose of strengthening the Party's influence and for 
carrying out its policy in these organizations and bodies. 

7. The Communist fractions are subordinated to the competent Party bodies. 

Note. a. Communist fractions in international organizations (Red Inter- 
national of Labor Unions, International Labor Defense, Workers International 
Relief, etc.), are subordinate to the Executive Committee of the Communist 

B. The organizational structure of the Communist fractions and the manner 
in which their work is guided are determined by special instructions from 
the Executive Committee of the Communist International and from Central Com- 
mittees of the respective Sections of the Comintern. 

//. The World Congress of the Communist International 

8. The supreme body of the Communist International is the World Congres.s 
of representatives of all Parties (Sections) and organizations affiliated to 
the Communist International. 

The World Congress discusses and decides the programmatic, tactical and 
organizational questions connected with the activities of the Communi>^t In- 
ternational aud of its various Sections. Power to alter the Program and 
Constitution of the Communist International lies exclusively with the World 
Congress of the Communist International. 

The World Congress shall be convened once every two years. The date of 
the Congress and the number of representatives from the various Sections 
to the Congress to be determined by the Executive Committee of the Communist 

The number of decisive votes to be allocated to each Section at the World 
Congress shall be determined by the special decision of the Congress itself, 
in accordance with the membership of the respective Party and to the political 
importance of the respective country. Delegates to the Congress must have a 
free mandate ; no imiierative mandate can be recognized. 

9. Special Congresses of the Communist International shall be convened on 
the demand of Parties which, at the preceding World Congress, had an aggre- 
gate of not less than one-half of the decisive votes. 

10. The World Congress elects the Executive Committee of the Communist 
International (E. C. C. I.), and the International Control Commission (I. C. C). 

11. The location of the headquarters of the Executive Committee is decided 
on by the World Congress. 

///. The Executive Committee of the Communist International 
and Its Suhsi diary Bodies 

12. The leading body of the Communist International in the period between 
Congresses is the Executive Committee, which gives instructions to all the 
Sections of the Communist International and controls their activity. 

The E. C. C. I. publishes the Central Organ of the Communist International, 
in not less than four languages. 

13. The decisions of the B. C. C. I. are obligatory for all the Sections of 
the Communist International and must be promptly carried out. The Sections 
have the right to appeal against decisions of the E. C. C. I. to the World 
Congress, but the decisions of the E. C. C. I. must be carried out pendioir the 
action of the World Congress. 

14. The Central Committees of the various Sections of the Communist 
International are responsible to their respective Party Congresses and to the 
E. C. C. I. The latter has the right to annul or amend decisions of Party^ 
Congresses and of Central Committees of Parties and also to make decisions 
which are obligatory for them. (Cf. Par. 13.) 

15. The E. C. C. I. has the right to expel from the Communist International, 
entire Sections, groups and individual members who violate the program and 
constitution of the Communist International or the decisions of the World 


Congress or of the E. C. C. I. Persons and bodies expelled have the right 
to appeal to the World Congress. 

16. The programs of the various Sections of the Communist International 
must be endorsed by the E. C. C. I. In the event of the E. C. C. I. refusing 
to endorse a program, the Section concerned has the right to appeal to the 
World Congress of the Communist International. 

17. The leading organs of the press of the various Sections of the Communist 
International must publish all the decisions and official documents of the 
E. C. C. I. These decisions must, as far as possible, be published also in 
the other organs of the Party press. 

18. The E.C.C.I. has the right to accept affiliation to the Communist Inter- 
national of organizations and Parties sympathetic to Communism, such organ- 
izations to have a consultative voice. 

19. The E.C.C.I. elects a Presidium responsible to the E.C.C.I., which acts as 
the permanent body carrying out all the business of the E.C.C.I. in the interval 
between the meetings of the latter. 

20. The E.C.C.I. and its Presidium have the right to establish permanent 
bureaus (Western European, South American, Eastern and other Bureaus of the 
E.C.C.I.), for the purpose of establishing closer contact with the various Sec- 
tions of the Communist International and in order to be better able to guide 
their work. 

Note: The scope of the activities of the permanent bureaus of the E.C.C.I. 
shall be determined by the E.C.C.I. or by its Presidium. The Sections of the 
Communist International which come within the scope of activities of the 
permanent bureaus of the E.C.C.I. must be informed of the powers conferred 
on these bureaus. 

21. The Sections must carry out the instructions of the permanent bureaus 
of the E.C.C.I. Sections may appeal against the instructions of the permanent 
bureaus to the E.C.C.I. or to its Presidium, but must continue to carry out sucli 
instructions pending the decision of the E.C.C.I. or of its Presidium. 

22. The E.C.C.I. and its Presidium have the right to send their representatives 
to the various Sections of the Communist International. Such representatives 
receive their instructions from the E.C.C.I. or from Its Presidium, and are 
responsible to them for their activities. Representatives of the E.C.C.I. have the 
right to participate in meetings of the central Party bodies as well as of the 
local organizations of the Sections to which they are sent. Representatives of 
the E. C. C.I. must carry out their commission in close contact with the Central 
Committee of the Section to which they are sent. They may, however, speak in 
opposition to the Central Committee of the given Section, at Congresses and Con- 
ferences of that Section, if the line of the Central Committee in question diverges 
from the instructions of the E.C.C.I. Representatives of the E.C.C.I. are especially 
obliged to supervise the carrying out of the decisions of the World Congresses and 
of the Executive Committee of the Conununist International. 

The E.C.C.I. and its Presidium also have the right to send instructors to the 
various Sections of the Communist International. The powers and duties of 
instructors are determined by the E.C.C.I., to whom the instructors are responsible 
in their work. 

23. Meetings of the E.C.C.I. must take place not less than once every six months. 
A quorum consists of not less than one-half of the membership of the E.C.C.I. 

24. Meetings of the Presidium of the E.C.C.I. must take place not less than 
once a fortnight. A quorum consists of not less than one-half of the membership 
of the Presidium. 

25. The Presidium elects the Political Secretariat, which is empowered to make 
decisions, and which also draws up proposals for the meetings of the E.C.C.I. 
and of its Presidium, and acts as their executive body. 

26. The Presidium appoints the editorial committees of the periodical and other 
publications of the Communist International. 

27. The Presidium of the E.C.C.I. sets up a Department for Work among Women 
Toilers, permanent committees for guiding the work of definite groups of Sections 
of the Communist International and other departments for its work. 

IV. The International Control Commission 

28. The International Control Commission investigates matters affecting the 
unity of the Sections affiliated to the Communist International and also matters 


connected with the Communist conduct of individual members of tlie various 

For tliis purpose tlie I.C.C., 

A. Examines complaints against the actions of Central Committees of Com- 
munist Parties lodged by Party members who have been subjected to disciplinary 
measures for political differences ; 

B. Examines such analogous matters concerning members of central bodies of 
Communist Parties and of individual Party members as it deems necessary, or 
which are submitted to it by the deciding bodies of the E. C.C.I. ; 

c. Audits the accounts of the Communist International. 

The International Control Commission nuist not intervene in the political 
differences or in organizational and administrative conflicts in the Communist 

The headquarters of the I. (". C. are lixed by the I. C. C, in agreement with 
the E. C. C. I. 

T. The Relationship Between the Sections of the Communist International and 

the E. C. C. I. 

29. The Central Committees of Sections affiliated to the Communist Interna- 
tional and the Central Committees of affiliated sympathizing organizations must 
send to the E. C. C. I. the Minutes of theii' meetings and reports of their work. 

30. Resignation from office by individual members or groups of members of 
Central Committees of the various Sections is regarded as disruptive of the 
Communist movement. Leading posts in the Party do not belong to the 
occupant of that post, but to the Communist International as a whole. Elected 
members of the Central leading bodies of the various Sections may resign 
before their time of office expires only with the consent of the E. C. C. I. 
Resignations accepted by Central Committees of Sections without the consent of 
the E. C. C. I. are invalid. 

31. The Sections affiliated to the Communist International nuist maintain 
close organizational and informational contact with each other, arrange for 
mutual representation at each other's conferences and congresses, and with 
the consent of the H C. C. I., exchange leading comrades. This applies par- 
ticularly to the Sections in imperialist countries and their colonies, and to 
the Sections in countries adjacent to each other. 

32. Two or more Sections of the Communist International which (like the 
Sections in the Scandinavian countries and in the Balkans) are politically 
connected with each other b.v common conditions of struggle, may, with the 
consent of the E. C. C. I., form federations for the piu'pose of co-ordinating 
their activities, such federations to work under the guidance and control of 
the E. C. C. I. 

83. The Sections of the Comintern must regularly pay affiliation dues to the 
E. C. C. I.; the amount of^such dues to be determined by the E. C. O. I. 

34. Congresses of the various Sections, ordinary and special, can be convened 
only with the consent of the E. C. C. I. 

In the event of a Section failing to convene a Party Congress prior to the 
convening of a World Congress, that Section, before electing delegates to the 
World Congress, must convene a Party conference, or Plenum of its Central 
Committee, for the purpf)se of considering the questions that are to come before 
the World Congress. 

35. The International League of Conununist Youth (Comnnuiist Youth Inter- 
national) is a Section of the Communist International with full rights and is 
subordinate to the E. C. C. I. 

36. The Communist Parties must be prepared for transition to illegal 
conditions. The E. C. C. I. must render the Parties concerned assistance in 
their preparations for transition to illegal conditions. 

37. Individual members of Sections of the Communist International may 
pass from one country to another only with the consent of the Central Com- 
mittee of the Section of which they are members. 

Communists changing their domicile must join the Section in the country of 
their new domicile. Communists leaving their country without the consent of 
the Central Committee of their Section must liot be accepted into other Sections 
of the Communist International. 


Exhibit No. 6 

[Source: A booklet published by the Trade Uuion Educational League, 1113 W. Wash- 
ington St., Chicago. Illinois : September, 1924] 


(By A. Losovsky) 

{Translation and Jntrodiiction by Alexander Bitteltnan) 

Published by The Trade Union International League, 111.3 W. Wasliington Blvd., 

Chicago. 111. 


If I were iiJ^ked to tell in a few words what is tlie most pronounced feature 
of tliis pamplilet by A. Lozovsky on "Lenin ; tlie Great Strategian of the Class- 
War," I should say this : It is a desire to extract from tlie experiences of 
Lenin's life as many lessons as is humanly possible for the advancement «)f the 
class struggle and for the promotion of the proletarian victory thruout the 

A. Lozovsky has been prompted to write on Lenin, it seems to me, not merely 
by a desire to perpetuate Lenin's memory. No. Lenin's name will live in the 
world as long as toiling ma.sses struggle against exploitation, and as long as 
oppressed nations and persecuted races tread the path of revolt against their 
masters in a fight for freedom aiul human equality. The motive that produced 
this little book is mucli more immediate, direct and practical than a mere wish 
to perpetuate the memory of a great leader. It is an earnest attempt to make 
Lenin in his death as nearly useful to the working class as he was in his life, 
and a study of this pamphlet will show that its autlior has acquitted himself of 
his task with more than ordinary excellence. 

What is it that we are primarily interested in about I/cniu? We, I mean 
tliose that are part and parcel of the labor movement and of the proletarian 
class struggle and that are fighting for the dawn of a new day. Wliat do we 
want to know about I.*nin and for what purpose? 

Lenin was the founder of a great party, the Commiuiist Party of Russia. 
He was the leader of the first successful proletarian revoUition. He was for 
over .six years the head of the tirst Workers' and Peasants' Government in the 
world. He was also the founder and recognized leader of the Communist In- 
ternational. For us, working class militants in the cause of labor, there is a 
world to learn from the experiences of Lenin as to how to educate, organize and 
arouse the masses to action against their capitalist exploiters. What we all 
want to know is, how did Lenin do it? What theories did he hold? What 
tactics did he pursue? What means did he employ? In short, ivhat is the 
essence of Lenin ism f 

Leninism is the theory and practice of working class struggle. It is tlie 
accumulated experience of the battling armies of the proletariat against capi- 
talism reflected by the mind of a genius. It is the century-old hatred of the 
oppressed against tlie oppressors embodied in a man of iron will and a great, 
beautiful heart. It is the proletarian urge to power expressed, formulated and 
led by the greatest leader the working class ever had. 

To understand thoroughly Lenin and Leninism one needs to be familiar with 
Russia, its history, the martyrdom of hundreds and thousands of Russian 
revolutionaries, and the long, bitter years of oppression suffered by the toiling 
masses of Russia. Lenin is inseparable from the class struggle of the Russian 

But his greatness and the importance of his work have gone far beyond the 
boundaries of his native land. At this moment there is not another name in 
the whole world which means so much for millions upon millions of human be- 
ings. It is as if the deepest longings and most intimate dreams of the oppressed 
in every corner of the globe, in "civilized" Europe as w^ell as in backward Africa, 
as much in America, as in Asia, have gone forward into the endless spaces of the 
universe and have found their point of concentration, their unifying genius in the 
life and teachings of Lenin. 

Was there ever a human being more truly international, more a leader of 
the people of all countries and all nations, than Lenin? 

Take his attitude toward the late imperialist war. How did he look upon 
it? How did he react towards it? 


He loA-ed the Russian masses with all the great powers of his human soul. 
Is anyone in doubt about that? If one's understanding of the most deeply 
buried feelings of the masses is any test of one's love for them, then who in 
Russia's history has surpassed Lenin in such understanding? And if one's 
sympathy for the sufferings of the masses, sympathy of the purest kind, of a 
most intense and burning nature, is any sign of one's love and devotion to the 
masses, then who in the life of Russia is greater in this resiJect than Lenin? 

And vet Lenin was one of the most consistent opponents of the idea of the 
workers defending "their" fatherland. He was unalterably opposed to the 
Russian masses shedding their blood for the greatness of Russia. Why? 
Because to him "Russia" was not an abstraction, but a real living thing. 
Because his great realistic mind was able to pierce through the glittering super- 
ficialities of "patriotism and fatherland, and to reach out after the substance of 
things. And in doing so he tinally reached the truth that if the name Russia 
stands for the tens of millions of its toiling masses, if the greatness of Russia is 
the same as the well-being, peace and security of the workers and peasants, then 
the true way of serving the greatness of Russia was to combat the late war 
and to destroy those forces which were instrumental in bringing the war about. 

This was the Lenin-way of being patriotic and loyal to one's nation and 

As these lines are being written, new war clouds are becoming visible on 
the Far-Eastern horizon. The capitalists of Japan are preparing to resist th.e 
encroachment of the capitalists of America in the division of imperialist spoils 
in China. The capitalists of America are preparing to impose their will by 
the force of arms. What does it mean? It means that we are drifting with 
progressively greater speed into a war with Japan. In fact, we are already 
engaged in war. 

Look at what we are now doing in China. All the manoeuvres of our bankers 
and officials in China in support of one warring general against another, all 
the movements of our warships in the Chinese waters, are nothing else than war 
against the capitalists of Japan for more power and influence over China for 
the capitalists of America. 

Again the air will be filled with "patriotism." love of country, loyalty to the 
fatherland, etc. Again the workers of the United States will be called upon 
l)y their masters to come to the defense of the honor, greatness and even 
freedom of America. The capitalist press of the country, these giant factories 
for the production of sham and camouflage to dope the working masses, will 
again start out on a systematic campaign to befog and befuddle the minds of 
the masses into tlie belief that "their" country is in danger of being attacked 
by a foreign enemy. 

' And when this begins to happen we shall be badly in need of some antidote 
to the poisonous influences of war propaganda. And what better means is 
there for such purpose than the wholesome, nourishing and sustaining food 
of Leninism? 

When in troi;ble, go back to Lenin. When in doubt, consult Lenin. This 
should become the maxim of every worker and poor farmer in the United States. 
For there is no surer guide to what the oppressed masses must do to protect 
themselves against the conspiracies of the capitalists than the teachings and 
directions of Leninism. 

Is it war that you are called upon to sacrifice your life for? If It is, here 
is what Lenin will tell you. First, inquire, ask questions. Who is it that calls 
you to war? For what purpose? In defense of whose interests? 

And when you find, as you are bound to, that the war is championed by the 
capitalists, that you are called upon to defend the profits and power of your 
I)Osses and exploiters, that it is a war of imperialist robbery and plunder, you 
will say what Lenin said: Not a cent and not a man for the aggrandizement 
of our class-enemies I Instead of waging war for capitalism, we shall start 
war against capitalism, for the overthrow of the power of our bosses and for 
the establishment of our own rule. 

And, then, you might ask some more questions. You might want to know 
liow best to fight your economic battles, how to resist wage cuts, open shops 
drives, unemployment. You will find, for instance, that one of your main 
problems in the coming months will be how best to strengthen your unions, 
to rejuvenate them with a new spirit of militancy and hopefulness. What 
must you do? What can you do? 

Turn to Lenin, he'll tell you. He has built a party and led a movement 
which already conquered for the toiling masses one sixth of the earth's surface. 


He ought to know liow you do those things. Ask him and he'll tell you. 

Then, if you go deep enough into the problems of the woi'king class, you 
will strike the problem of all problems, the question of how you can do away 
with capitalism altogether. And you will want to know the best way, the suresc 
road, the shortest cut to your final goal. And again we say, ask Leuiu, study 

As with all knowledge tliat is really worth having, there is no royal or 
sliort road to the study of Leninism. Many books liave been and will be 
written on Lenin and on Leninism, which is merely anotlier name for the great 
art and science of the Social Revolution. Those working class militants, who 
are truly ambitious to serve their class against capitalism, will no doubt find 
the rime and energy required for a thorough study of Leninism. And as a 
l.ieginning or introduction to such a course of study we know of no better work 
than this pamphlet by A. 

Losovsky's pamphlet should be carefully read aud studied by every trade- 
union militant who is active in the labor movement. For there are few better 
ways of assimilating the experiences of great — one is tempted to say the 
greatest — revolutionary leader and turning these experiences to good account 
is one's own immediate work, than by studying the life work of Lenin. And 
for this one would want no more efficient and kindlier guide than this little 

AVhen you are thru with the reading of it. you grasp, perhaps for the first 
time, the true stature of the Russian giant. His marvelous knowledge of 
economics and the social sciences generally, his great analytical mind, his 
almost superhuman sense for detecting the deep, quiet processes that are 
constantly taking place within the broad masses, his flexibility of mind, his 
burning hatred of capitalist oppression and his iron determination to fight the 
l)loody thing to a finish — all these qualities of Lenin take living shape under the 
pen of Lozovsky, who has succeeded in presenting us with a most illuminating 
picture of the great Strategian of the Class Struggle. 

We cannot all become Lenins. it is true, but many a workingman and working- 
woman can succeed in approximating the great leader to one degree or another 
if sufficient effort is lent in that direction in a conscious and determined way. 

Our class is badly in need of leaders — loyal, capable and efficient fighters 
in the proletarian struggle for power. Never in the history of society has an 
oppressed class struggling for freedom confronted an enemy as clever, tricky, 
resourceful, unscrupulous and brutal as is the ruling class of today, the 
capitalists. This fact imposes a duty upon every working class militant to 
study and learn the art and science of social revolution, to familiarize him- 
.self with the tactics and methods of Leninism which have been proved to be 
the only way to the overthrow of capitalism and the complete liberation of 
the working class. 

Alexander Bittelmax 

Chicago, September, 1924. 

A Le:adf.r Not A Hero 

There are epochs in human history when single individuals incorporate the 
experiences and historical tasks of whole classes. History develops by curves 
find as the class struggle develops in intensity these individuals appear in the 
foreground and assume their greatest importance at a time when the social 
antiigouisms reach their highest point. 

Human history knows of many examples of gifted statesmen, thinkers, 
politicians aud diplomats. But all of them up till now have been representa- 
tives of the feudal and capitalist classes. Only in the 19th century when the 
proletariat came to feel itself as a class do we find the refiection of its in- 
terests in the genius, Marx. Lenin is the direct successor of Marx. 

When we consider closely Lenin's role in the labor movement of the last 
decades the first question that appears is. whether we Marxians ought not to 
revise our theory regarding the role of single individuals in history. For is 
it not a fact that Lenin has been a living illustration of the theory of the 
heroes and the masses and did he not, by the activities of his life, disprove the 
correctness of the materialist conception of history? We must consider this 
problem at the very outset in order to relieve ourselves of any false idealistic 
conceptions that we might entertain. The truth is that the real greatness of 


the genius of the most outstanding strategian of the class struggle can be cor- 
rectly appreciated only from the point of view of the class whose leader he was. 
The Marxians who enter the study of Lenin's role in history are under 
no necessity of abandoning their theory of the relation between heroes and 
masses. Quite the contrary. Only on the basis of the materialist conception 
of history, only thru a sober analysis of the forces in the class strugglp, can 
we correctly appreciate the role which Lenin, the greatest thinker and rev- 
olutionist, has played in the international labor movement and in tlse inter- 
national revolution. 

^Marxism ix Practice 

Lenin was a Marxian dialectician. There are many people that 'know Marx 
very well but are incapable of deriving the political lessons and conclusions 
implied in theory. In this' respect Lenin was totally diffei-ent. He has taken 
the Marxian tlieory and methods and applied them in the practice of life. 
And with the help of his acute analytical mind he interpreted events in their 
dialectical development. Lenin was one of the foremost experts in the economics 
and philosophical theories of Marx. But as already said, he was not primarily 
a theoretician, but a practical Marxian and a political dialectician. The Hegel- 
ian dialectics which Marx had developed to its higliest point were conipletely 
mastered by Lenin. He never reasoned abstractly. He despised piu-e rati<iii- 
alizing. He hated the free sway of "pure reasoning." He fought against 
philosophic charlatanism and always proved in action that the truth is concrete. 

Just as Marx was manoeiivring with the general factors of economic life, 
so was Lenin manoeuvring with the concrete forces of the class struggle. In the 
colorful kaleidoscope of social relations and from the complexities of the 
everyday events of modern life he always managed to hit upon the fundamental 
and most important tendencies. He was never deceived by appearances. He 
was a man called upon to tread new paths. Always pursuing his own way, 
capable by means of his dialectics not only to explain but constantly to drive 
history forward. Lenin was a dialectician in politics and a Marxist in action. 
That is, he knew exactly how to make history in as masterly a fashion as Marx 
explained it. 

Identity With a Class 

Lenin joined the labor movement at its very dawn. The first spontaueou.s 
outbreaks of the class struggle in the '80s reverberated thru Russia with a 
resounding echo. The advancing Marxian movement thrust itself upon the 
beginnings of the industrial develoiiment of Russia, drawing into its ranks 
many elements of the radical intelligentsia. The first generation of revolution- 
ary intellectuals (Plechanov, Vera Sassulitsch, and Deutsch) founded the group 
of "Liberation of Labor" which is the predecessor of the Russian Social- 
Democratic Party and of the Russian Communist Party. Lenin belonged to 
the second generation of Marxians. Together with many others he joined the 
labor movement, but while tlie others were merely passers-by. utilizing it for 
their own purpose, Lenin remained and led the movement until his very end. 

Lenin imderstood from the very outset the power of the new class. In his 
very first writings he discusses this matter and says : '"The working class 
is the bearer of the revolution." The working class stands in the foreground 
and everything which hampers its development, which demoralizes its ranks, 
which stands in the way of its historical development, must be destroyed and 
removed. To say at that period that the working class was the bearer of the 
revolution meant to determine its historic role as against tlie couceptions of 
the old socialist school of the "Narodniki." 

Lenin completely identified him.'^elf with the working class and became its 
spokesman. He knew as nobody else did how to keep away from the working 
class and from the then-developing working class party all alien elements. At 
present it is <>asier, of course, to see which of those elements were really alien 
to the labor movement. But to have known this 25 or 30 years ago was much 
more difficult. At that time there were no material advantages to be derived 
by people accepting the Marxian theory. On the contrary.' they had to bring 
sacrifices, suffer persecutions, etc. Nevertheless some of these Marxians were 
nothing more than hangers-on to the labor movement. Chief among those was 
Peter Struve, formerly a Social-Democrat and later on a leader of the left-wing 
of the liberal movement, still later a meml)er of the Constitutional Democratic 


I'arty, ami at present a monarchist. One required a sliarp tlieoretical mind, 
and an extraordinary instinct, to detect in tlie Marxian pliraseology of the 
Jirst worlc of Peter Struve the real weak spots. 

Lenin po.ssessed the ability to guard the working class theoretically and 
practically against the intrusion of alien elements. He also knew how to relieve 
llie labor* movement of those of them who succeeded iu getting into it. Lenin 
knew the working class, he had faith in it, he grasped its historical importance 
and tlierefore understood how to maintain the integrity of the labor movement. 

Building the Russian Party 

The working class will win, but only iu the event that it succeeds in creating 
a strongly united <ii'gauization whicli is ideologically homogeneous. The work- 
ing class cannot be victorious without uniting the best, the most class conscious 
and revolutionary elements. Hence tiie role of the party as the guiding-force 
of the revolution." The party is not identical with the working class, l)ut is its 
natural leader. The party leads the masses only inasmuch as it is organically 
united with tiie working class reacting to its everyday life. Without a party 
tlie working class cannot make a single step. Without a party the revolution 
is an empty i)hrase. 

Theoretically this truth was recognized even by Lenin's predecessors, but it 
was he alone "who understood how to translate into practice these theoretical 
propositions. The history of the Russian Social-Democracy and of the Russian 
Communist Party is organically bound up with the activities of Lenin. He was 
the organizer of "the party, tiie educator of a whole generation of party workers 
and leaders, beginning with the time of underground groups up till the moment 
when the working class assumed power in the largest country in the world. 
It was because he understood that the w^orking class cannot live without a 
party that he devoted his greatest attention to the building up of such a party. 

It" would be difticult to find another man in the history of parties whose life 
and activity was so intimately interwoven with the party as was Lenin's with 
the Russian Commttnist Party. He was its theoretician, its man of action, 
agitator, propagandist, organizer and leader. He was soldier and general, 
teacher and ptipil. but never did he get the idea that: "The party, this is I," 
as his opponents used to reproach him. He realized that the power and great- 
ness of the party depends upon its organic connection with tlie masses, its 
collaboration with the creative and progressive elements of the working class. 

One can state without exaggeration that the Russian Communist Party was 
the creation of his spirit, the work of his hands. Such a party could be created 
liy one who is perfectly clear as to what are the mtitual relations between the 
party and the class. Lenin's slogan was: "The party above all." Why'? 
Because the Party is the vanguard of the working class, and as such must know 
not only how to march forward but, if need be, to go against the spontaneous 
movements among the workers and at decisive moments powerfully to assume 
the offensive. The party is the organized consciousness of the class, a fact 
which distinguishes it from the unorganized elemental movements of the 

Seuf-Criticism and Frankness 

Lenin knew exactly the strong and weak sides of the labor movement. And 
for this reason he reacted so exceptionally critically to every theory built upon 
tlie backwardness and weaknesses of the working class. He possessed a sixth 
sense, the sense of anti-reformism. He smelted reformism from a distance. It 
was very difficult indeed in 1903 to have determined on the basis of differences 
(if opinion regarding the first paragraph of tlie party constittition, who were the 
proletarian Girondists and who were the Jacobins. Nevertheless, Lenin deter- 
mined this very definitely after the Second Congress of the Russian Social- 
Democratic Party. Thrti the formttlation of the famous paragraph one, he 
came to the creation of the Girondist wing of the Party. Since then he con- 
tinuotisly criticized the right wing of the Russian Social-Democratic Party whose 
reformism became apparent to everyone only in 1905. 

Thruout the first revolution, in tlie period preceding the late war, and par- 
ticularly after the war, this anti-reformist sense of Lenin manifests itself in 
all his activities. He was deceived neither by revolutionary phrases nor by 
well-sounding resolutions. He exposed to the daylight the reformist theoreti- 
cians and men of action, despite all their atteniijts to conceal their real nature. 


He was primarily a man of experience and practical deeds, and it was iu this 
.sphere of life that he caused the defeat of the strategians of reformism. More 
than one half of his writings were devoted to the demoralizing activities of 
reformism, specifically to the Russian Mensheviks. Just as an archeologist 
determines the species of a pre-historic animal by the examination of a single 
bone, so Lenin was able to determine the reformist nature of his opponents by a 
single phrase in one or another of their articles. 

The Enemy of Reformism 

Lenin would i-eacli out after the substance of reformism, no matter under 
what masks it would make its appearance, and without any effort on his part 
would tear off the covering. In the attempt that was made before the first 
revolution to revise Marx, to connect him with Kant and similar philosophers, 
Lenin immediately recognized the intention to reject the revolution and a tend- 
ency to surrender Marxism to the ideology of the bourgeoisie. Lenin never 
considered reformism as an inner tendency in the working class. He con- 
sidered reformism rather as a class enemy, operating within the labor movement 
and therefore more dangerous to it than the outside enemies. 

Because of this attitude of Lenin's, he has been charged with sectarianism 
and intolerance. But he continued to pursue his line of action with the greatest 
tenacity for details, proving that reformism is one of the greatest enemies of 
the labor movement, and that our theoretical struggle with the Mensheviks will 
eventually bring us to the sharpest conflicts with them. The Russian revolution 
has proved Lenin correct, thereby showing his extraordinary far-sightedness and 
sound instinct. In recent years reformism became the most powerful weapon 
in the hands of the bourgeoisie. Due to reformism, the working class movement 
has suffered a series of defeats enabling the capitalist system to continue a 
while in existence. 

Re\-oluiion and Actuaxity 

Lenin conceived of the revolution as of something that Avas moving right 
upon us. and not as something lying in the far-off distance. Because of this 
he never tired of insisting that we must prepare ourselves daily for the revo- 
lution, even politically and technically. The political preparations consisted in 
training the masses for action thru everyday struggle. Lenin used to say: 
"The most important thing is to bring the masses in motion, thereby enabling 
them to accumulate experiences within a short period of time." The revolution 
confronts us directly with the problem of armed insurrection. And to speak 
of this without proper technical preparations, is merely to mouth empty 
phrases. He who wants the revolution must systematically prepare for it the 
broad masses, who will, in the process of preparation, create the necessary 
organs of the struggle. 

The Mtnisheviks were fond of ridiculing the idea of technical preparations 
for an armed insurrection. According to their conception the center of gravity- 
would lie in the sphere of propaganda, of arming the minds of the workers. 
To this Lenin's reply was: '"He who refuses technically to prepare for the 
insurrection ultimately rejects the insurrection itself, and transforms the 
program of the revolution into an empty phrase." 

Although Lenin knew quite well that revolutions are not made to order, that 
the success of a revolution demands certain deep-going historical changes. 
Tievertheless he insisted that the problem of the revolution is not only political 
but also the technical organization of the revolutionary class. A party which 
does not prepare for the revolution must be considered a discussion club rather 
than the leader of a revolutionary class. No matter how difficult this problem 
is. yet all the progressive forces of the working class must be organized in 
order to solve this problem. Thus we see that for Lenin the revolution was 
always a concrete problem of the day which at times comes close to us and 
again moves back into the distance, depending upon the situation and the 
correlation of forces, but always remains the acute problem of the labor 

Proletarian Statesmanship 

Lenin was a foremost statesman. What does this mean? Arcording to' his 
own definition a statesman is one who understands how to manoeuver with 
niiliions of people, Avho is capable of estimating correctly the mutual relations- 


of social classes, who can detect the weak spots iu his enemy's armor and who 
knows how to make effective the strongest side of his own class. 

In this respect Lenin possessed extraordinary gifts. He knew above all 
how to determine the line of demarcation between classes and to create a con- 
crete and practical program of action calculated to bring together the working 
class with its temporary ally, the peasantry. He based his judgment of political 
conditions, not on superficial appearances, not upon the so-called public opinion, 
but upon the deep processes that are taking place within the working class. 
His mind always pierced thru to the very vitals of a situation. He studied 
the make-up of social life in order to find for himself a starting point, and 
then he continued to base his activities on tlie dynamics of the class struggle. 

These traits of Lenin's character made him the most dangerous to, and at 
the same time the most hated by, the class enemies of the proletariat, whom 
he always managed to hit at the softest spot. He was a realer politiker (of 
course, realistic not in the reformist sense, for whom realism means adaptation 
to the bourgeoi-sie ) in the sense that he based his revolutionary activities on 
the correlation of forces in the class struggle. The reformists of all countries 
declared Lenin to be a Utopian, an "irrational" statesman, because he always 
busied himself with the problem of revolution, and themselves they consider 
realists because they advocate the idea of gradually transforming bourgeois 
society along the lines of evolution. But these "great realists" became tools 
in the hands of the bourgeois politicians after the war, while Lenin the 
"irrational state.sman" became the most dangerous opponent of the bourgeoisie 
and the leader of millions of toilers who have risen against theii* masters. 

Immediately after the October revolution Lenin was charged by all petty 
bourgeois socialists with being an adventurer. But this "adventurer" iiroved 
by his deeds which side the real power was on. The "realists" among the 
Social-Revolutionists and Mensheviks have simply missed the importance of 
rhe great change that has taken place in human life. They have even failed 
to notice that the masses have turned their backs on them, Lenin was the 
greatest statesman of our age. He has proven this standing at the helm of 
the greatest state in the world, by the exceptional flexibility of the Russian 
Communist Party, whose leader and creator he was. 

Critical and Realistic 

A sober estimate of his own and his enemies' forces was always the starting 
point for Lenins political activity. Only he can be termed a real statesman 
who is able fearlessly to look reality in the face, who coolly estimates the forces 
of the opposing class, who is not dealing in mere phrases and who is able mer- 
cilessly to expose and criticize the weak sides of his own class and Iiis own 
organization. Also in this respect Lenin iiossessed an exceptionally strong 
senst' for reality. He never succumed to the hypnosis of fantastic figui'es and 
prctnipous proclamation. 

When he came to Russia in 1917. the time when the Social-Revolutionists held 
full sway, Lenin remarked : "The power they hold is only imaginary. The 
Party of the Socialist Revolutionists is an empty shell." Although at that 
time millions upon millions of workers were following the lead of the party 
of the Chernovs and Kerenskys. yet he immediately perceived the instability 
of the influence of the Socialist Revolutionists. 

Basing his opinion on the real situation, Lenin spoke in favor of the Brest- 
Litovsk treaty against the wish of the "public opinion" (at that time the 
liberal and reformist press was still in existence) and at first even against 
the leadership of the Russian Connnunist Party. Upon what did Lenin base 
his tactics? T'pon those deep processes which have been developing within 
the broad masses. While these latter had been protesting against the peace 
treaty, the soldiers were leaving the front e» masse. Lenin has defined the 
situation by a very laconic but significant expi-ession : "The peasants have voted 
in favor of peace with their legs because they have been leaving the front." 
No amount of phraseology in favor of a revolutionary war could convince him to 
the contrary. He was asking his opponents : "Have you got at least one regi- 
ment, have you the support of any armed power, which could be put up against 
rho fleeing, demoralized peasant ma.sses? We cannot fight. We need a I)rea th- 
ing space. No matter how short, it will be of advantage to us." History has 
proved that he was right. 

Lenin's prognosis that by means of tliis breathing space we would be able to 
create a new army, inspired with a new spirit, and able to take the offensive 


again, has been proven to the correct. "One must know also how to evade a 
tight," he used to exclaim, arguing in favor of signing the Brest-Litovsk treaty. 
"It is better to retreat in a semi-orderly fashion than to subject the army to 
complete dissolution. A leader is he who knows how to protect his army from 
breaking up, and who adopts all necessary measures to preserve his army for 
future battles." Today this looks to us like A. B. C. wisdom. In order to 
understand the real extent of Lenin's genius one must remember the tragic 
situation of Soviet Russia in 1918, and the terrific difBculties which Lenin had 
to overcome in order to convince his own Party that his estimate of the situa- 
tion and of the relation of forces was the correct one. 

The Gbkat Alliance Be-Tween Workers and Peasants 

Lenin's sense for reality has manifested itself also in the fact that long before 
the revolution he was able to estimate correctly the significance of the peasan- 
try. Most of the Marxians had a very poor conception of the role of the peas- 
ants in the approaching revolution. From the fact that agriculture was 
subservient to city industry and that small-scale production was gradually dis- 
appearing, many Marxians drew the conclusion that the peasants will not play 
in the revolution any active part at all or else will play a reactionary part. 

As far back as 1905, Lenin already perceived the insufficiency of the agrarian 
program of the Social-Democratic Party. Immediately upon the beginning of 
the wide revolutionary movement among the peasants in 1005, he formulated 
the demand for the nationalization of the land. Lenin's slogan at that time was : 
"The dictatorship of the proletariat and the peasantry." He saw the necessity 
for an alliance of these two classes in order to remove the power of the largo 
land-owners. As the February revolution was developing, making clear the 
extent of the change that was to come, and as he realized that Russia would 
not satisfy itself with a l)Ourgeois democracy, he conunenced propounding in a 
practical fashion the problem of the dictatorship of the proletariat and the 
peasantry which was to be incorporated in the Russian Soviet State. 

As an expert in the agrarian problems, and as one well versed in the applied 
phases of political economy, I^enin had been well aware of the fact that the 
peasantry cannot play any independent role. But for this very reason, he said, 
it is our duty to win the peasantry over to the side of the proletariat. He had 
been writing and saying: "The peasantry will support either the bourgeoisie or 
the proletariat. The peasantry stands to gain from the proletariat much more 
than from the bourgeoisie. Particularly if we pursue such a policy as to 
disabuse the peasantry of its prejudices against the dictatorship of the prole- 
tariat." Hence his slogan : "An alliance between the proletariat and the peas- 
antry," and the policy of winning the masses of the villages for the support of 
the political and economic policies of the working class. 

LEiVRNiNG From Events 

How did Lenin succeed in arriving at such a realistic conception of the role 
of the peasantry in the revolution? It was due to his ability to estimate cor- 
rectly the social forces in modern society. He knew how to learn from events. 
The peasant uprisings of 1902-03, which had assumed very large proportions 
before the revolution of 1005, the role played by the army in suppressing the 
first revolution, the role played by the same army during the second revolution, 
the revolt of the peasants, the vacillating attitude of the peasantry towards the 
Soviet Power during the first year after the October revolution — all these facts 
served Lenin as material for his decisions on tactics with regard to the peasantry. 
He was a realistic statesman in the best sense of the word. A defeat would never 
cause him to fold his hands in passivity, but on the contrary would just aroust> 
his energy and obstinacy, in a desire to study and arrive at the causes which had 
led to defeat. He used to sa.v : "We are defeated. We must learn the causes 
of our defeat, we must throw light upon every wrong step that we have made, so 
that we become more practical and more far-sighted." 


Lenin never limited himself to the study of the labor movement of Russia alone 
but studied with the same vigor all social confiicts in Europe during which the 
working class suffered defeat. The great French Revolution, the conspiracy of 
Baboeuf, the Chartist movement, the June days in Paris, the Paris Commune, 
the great economic strikes during the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 


20th ceiituiy— all these served as the basis for determiniug the causes of the 
weakness of the working class movement. Furthermore he studied with the same 
care the mechanism of modern society and the forces at the disposj'.l of our enemy 
classes. As the result of his study of capitalist society, its form and methods 
of oi'ganization, the unity of the bourgeois classes as against the disunity of the 
working masses, he had found the prime reason for our defeats, for the victories 
of the bourgeoisie, and had arrived at a correct appreciation of the methods of 
struggle of the working class. 

Tbtje Pegle^takian Internationalism 

As with the agrarian problem, so also with the national problem, Leain has 
given us a new conception of its siguificance. The international Social- 
Democracy attempted tlie solution oi this problem in a purely rationalistic man- 
ner. The Social-Democracy protested formally against the colonial policy of the 
bourgeoisie. It became apparent, however, right at the beginning of the last 
war, that international reformism is putting the so-called national interests 
above the class interests, and is accepting the point of view of the bourgeoisie in 
the matter of colonial ix)licy. Long before the revolution Lenin had been study- 
ing the national problem. During the war he had been writing against the 
Great Russian chauvinists, exposing the false position of even many of the left- 
wing elements of the labor movement. 

When Lenin came to power he commenced to put into effect his own policies. 
In doing so, it must be admitted, he found resistance even in the ranks of his 
own party. Lenin had fought with particular energy against the attempt to 
carrj on a nationalistic and Russifying policy under the cover of international- 
ism. It is known that Lenin was the spiritual father of tiie international policies 
of Soviet Russia. But is is not so well known that he had been following with 
particular attention Soviet Russia's Eastern policies. From the workers of those 
countries which hold in subjection other nations, he used to demand not only 
platonic sympathies for the oppressed, but practical political and technical mea- 
sures of support to the revolutionary masses which are struggling against the 
yoke of imperialism. 

For Lenin the demand for "self-determination of nations up to the point of 
separation" was no mere demagogic phrase, but a real law of practical policy. 
If we follow the line of policy pursued by Soviet Russia since its existence we 
hnd that this v.'as the actual policy of Leuin put into effect. He was never 
satisfied with general principles alone. He carried out his ideas in all details. 

Lenin took part in the debate on the national question which took place in 
December of 1922. He wrote : "I have already mentioned in my writings on 
the national question that there is no use in considering this problem abstractly. 
It is necessary to distinguish between the nationalism of a people which op- 
presses, and the nationalism of a people which is itself oppressed, that is, be- 
tween the nationalism of big nations and the nationalism of small nations. We, 
as representatives of a big nation, are almost always guilty of endless wrongs 
against the small nations. And furthermore, unconsciously for ourselves, we 
perpetrate outrages and give offense. The internationalism of the so-called big 
nations, of one who is oppressing others, must consist not only in formally ac- 
cepting the principle of equality of nations, but also in creating conditions for 
the abolition of the wrong doings of the great nation. He who does not under- 
stand this will not be able to assume a correct proletarian position on this 
question. He will assume substantially the point of view of the petty bourgeoisie, 
being liable at any moment to follow the lead of the bourgeoisie. What is it that 
is of importance to the proletariat? It is not only important but absolutely 
essential that the proletariat possess great confidence in iself. How can this 
be secured V To establish the principle of formal equality will not suffice. Only 
thru our deeds, thru the actual concessions that we make to other nationalities, 
which will wipe out their memories of former oppression by the old ruling classes, 
can we establish the necessary self-confidence. I believe that a Bolshevist or a 
Communist needs no further explanations. A true proletarian policy would 
demand of us in this sphere of activity, to be particuhirly careful and concilia- 
tory, and in this given instance it would be much better to yield too nuich than too 
little to the national minorities. The interests of proletarian solidarity, and c(m- 
sequently of the proletarian class struggle, demand that we consider the national 
question not merely in a formal way. We must take into consideration the dif- 
ference of conception and ideas between the great nation and the small }iation. 
Nothing is so detrimental to the development and consolidation of proletarian 
94031 — 40 — app., pt. 1 7 


solidarity as a sense of national injustice. Nothing calls forth such bitter reac- 
tions from the national minorities as the sense of being oppressed by our own 
proletarian comrades." 

This quotation shows the whole genius and simplicity of Lenin's deep under- 
standing of the psychology of the oppressed peoples. Now, has Lenin's national 
policy brought any positive results? If there is any doubt on that score it can 
be obliterated by merely inquiring of the oppressed peoples of the East. The 
oppressed peoples of the entire East have a very correct understanding of the 
deeply interna,tional and revolutionary proletarian character of Lenin's national 

The Gift of Orientation 

Lenin possessed the exceptional ability of orientation and Marxian far- 
sightedness. As a realist in class politics he quickly perceived the nature of 
bourgeois democracy. But it was in this field that great efforts had to be made 
to free oneself from historic traditions. For was not Lenin the founder of the 
Social-Democracy which had inscribed on its banner that the way to socialism 
lies thru democracy? Yet in spite of all this he was successful in destroying 
all fetishes of democracy. He succeeded in this because of the revolution which 
in its development had to overcome these democratic obstacles. He did not shrink 
even from dissolving the Constituent Assembly, which had been a sacred 
thing in the minds of many generations of Russian intellectuals. Political 
democracy was never able to blind his eyes to the social and economic problems 
of the revolution. As against bourgeois democracy he placed the democracy of 
the proletariat. 

International refoi-mism saw in this act of Lenin's his heaviest sin, while in 
reality it was one of his greatest contributions to the proletarian class struggle. 
The civil war in Russia had exposed the fractions and parties, which had been 
fighting under the banner of democracy and the Constituent Assembly as real 
counter-revolutionists. The last years of struggle in the West have proved very 
convincingly that the democratic cooperationi between the Social-Democracy 
and the bourgeoisie is nothing more than betrayal of the working class. 

The Proletarian State and the Communist Party 

Lenin had a perfect conception of the nature of democracy and of the State. 
He restated the ftlarxian position regarding the nature of the State and its 
role in the class struggle. As against the bourgeois democi-atic State, he placed 
the Soviet State as the concrete form of the proletarian dictatorship. And 
he also defined the position of the Soviet State in the development of the social 
revolution. Every State, including the Soviet State, is the weapon of a definite 
class. The State as such is an organ of oppression of one class by the other. 
In this definition is contained the idea of the tran.sitory nature of the State 
from a historic point of view. By the abolition of classes and the class stmggle, 
the State will disappear, hut as a result of many years of historical develop- 
ment and not as a result of one single act, as in the conception of the Anarchists. 
To bring about the situation where there are no classes in society, is possible 
only by means of a firm dictatorship of the working class, it is only 
by means of such a dictatorship that we can break the resistance of the classes 
that are opposed to the proletariat. Lenin also knew that the establishment 
of the proletarian power is impossible without a violent revolution, and tliat 
the maintenance of this proletarian power would be impossible without a 
merciless suppression of the exploiting classes. 

But the State is not an abstract category. The proletariat creates the State 
in a form which is most advantageous to itself. Such a form is the Soviet 
System of State, for it best unites the workers for management of the economic 
and political affairs of the country. Consequently the Soviet system is the 
best form of the proletarian dictatorship, and the Soviets are the best adapted 
fighting organs of the working class. 

How does the working realize its dictatorship? Naturally, thru the 
Soviets. And how do the Soviets realize their dictator.ship? Thru special organs 
created by themselves. The opponents of Communism criticized Lenin for 
the fact that he placed the sign of equation between the dictatorship of the 
class and the dictatorship of the Party. They said: "The dictatorship of the 
class is one thing, while the dictatorship of the Party is an entirely different 
proposition." To this Lenin replied : "The working class must realize its 


dictatorship thru its vanguard, and since the Communist Party of Russia is the 
vanguard of the working class it is quite natural that this Party exercises the 
power of the proletarian rule." This theory Lenin had put into effect. And 
it is not an abstract theory, but a living reality. In the gigantic workshop 
called Soviet Russia were forged the new historic forms of working class power, 
and new methods of struggle for its liberation. Lenin always went aliead, 
clearing the path, casting aside all prejudices and throwing a mighty searchlight 
of Marxism upon the complex problems of the social and economic struggles. 

Power of Concentration 

As a foremost strategian Lenin understood how to direct the attention of the 
masses to itself, how to concentrate the lighting energies of the masses, direct- 
ing them to some central point. He knew the secret of formulating slogans in 
a simple and universally understood manner. He also knew as nobody else did 
how to organize the masses and lead them into struggle, always in accordance 
with the fundamental principle of strategy which is, that the offensive is the 
best defensive. Lenin never iiermitted the initiative to slip out of his hands. 
He knew that the moment the enemy seizes the initiative our battle is lost. 
He was always striving towards determining results, even if they were small. 
He pursued our class enemies to the point of tlieir complete destruction. He 
knew neither sentimentalism nor vacillation, whicli was the result, not of his 
"blood-thirstiness"' as our class enemies would have us believe, but of liis deep 
understanding of the mechanism of the social struggle. 

When the class struggle reaches a sharpened stage, indecision is much more 
costly to the working class than the utmost relentlessness towards the enemy. 
In moments of decision the least failure to adopt energetic measures results 
in tlie working class paying witli thousands of lives. Such indecision enables 
the enemy to collect its forces and to assume the offensive. In the whole of 
Lenin's activities the following passes like a redthread : Initiative, determina- 
tion, ruthlessness, the pursuit of the enemy until he is destroyed, quick action 
and the co'.icentration of the proletarian forces at the weakest spot of the 
enemy's front. 

At the same time Lenin understood how to diagnose the weak spots in the 
armor of his own class. He would fight and exclude from the midst of the 
proletariat many elements and whole social groups that were steering against 
the course of the proletarian movement. He had a very fine sense of perception 
for all the quiet processes that are going on within the masses, he sensed very 
quickly all the subterranean forces within the proletariat, and he always under- 
stood how to differentiate between tlie sound and unsound tendencies within 
the working class. We must not forget that the working class finds itself within 
the capitalist order of society, and that as a result of this, capitalism is exert- 
ing a great influence over the proletarian masses. Reformism, for instance, is 
the ideology of the bourgeoisie transplanted on working class soil. Lenin was 
in possession of an iron will to fight. He never permitted himself to be intimi- 
dated by defeats. He always intrenched himself in the po.sitions to which the 
working class would be compelled to retreat and from there again assume the 

An Organizer of Masses 

Lenin was not only a foremost Marxian, a statesman and strategian of 
extraordinary foresightedness, he was also one of the greatest organizers and 
leaders of the masses. He knew how to unite around himself large masses of 
human beings, to draw them into a mass movement, and to lead them into strug- 
gles. He always stood at the central point of the class struggle. He was 
charged with energy, with faith, witli absolute conviction, transmitting all this 
not only to those who stood close to him but also to hundreds of thousands and 
to millions. The international reformists speak of Lenin as the destroyer of 
socialism, a sectarian, an intolerant spirit, and .so forth. Yes, we will admit 
that Lenin was the destroyer of bourgeois and petty-bourgeois parties. He 
couldn't tolerate reformism. He was a sectarian because he refused to deal 
with the betrayers of the labor movement. 

The work of Lenin's life speaks for itself. This "spirit of destruction" stood 
at tlie head of a mighty country. This "sectarian" has been the founder and 
leader of the greatest political party in the world. This "spirit of intolerance" 
left after him more love and loyalty than anyone else in the course of thou- 
sands of years. Lenin's organizing abilities have found their expression in 30 
j'ears of work, beginning with the creation of illegal political groups up to the 


point when he assumed the leadership of Soviet Russia. For him there was 
no struggle possible, no victory possible, without organization. Organization 
work was part and parcel of his life's activities. He had built his organiz-ition 
from the bottom up, he created a school of organization that is being followed 
hy a generation which, from his theorey and particularly from his action, will 
draw inspiration for years and years to come. 

The Embodiment op the Proletaeian Will to Po^^•ER? 

One of Lenins most notable characteristics was his will pov\'er. He knew 
nothing but the revolution, and had been pursuing this end with all his energy. 
So-called public opinion had no influence over him. He never paid any attention 
to "what the other fellow will say. He always felt the pulsation of the working 
class, because he was so closely connected with it. He also knew how to swim 
against the current, how to overcome obstacles, whenever this was demanded 
by the revolution. Let us recollect how he passed to Russia thru Germany at the 
I)eginning of the revolution without paying the least attention to the insinuations 
of Ithe capitalist and reformist press the world over. He possessed the ability to 
concentrate his will power and to strike the enemy at the weakest spot. While 
he was very patient with his friends he never knew or showed any tolerance to 
the betrayers of the working class. When a friend of yesterday would become 
the enemy of todav Lenin would pursue the same tactics of uncompromising 
hostility. His tactics were always elastic, which enabled him to utilize even 
the slightest mistake of his opponent in order to drive a wedge into the ranks 
of the enemy. He never shunned responsibility, especially in decisive moments 
of struggle. * He always knew what he wanted. The most characteristic feature 
of the Apolitical and moral physiognomy of Lenin, this gigantic concentration 
of the v.'ill of the proletariat, were his extraordinary will power and his all- 
inclusive spirit. 

Formal Logic Versus Revolutionary Tactics 

If one were to approach the estimation of Lenins activities from the point of 
view of formal logic, one would find quite a number of contradictions. In the 
one hand, if one analyzes his activity from the i>oint of view of the objective 
conditions with which Lenin was dealing, and also considers dialectically the 
developments themselves, then all contradictions will disappear. He pursued 
the taetics of quick changes in orientation. His agrarian program between 1901 
and 1903 had been based upon the principle of the division of land among the 
peasants, and in October of 1917 he carried thru the socialization of land. 

Like all Social-Democrats Lenin started out as one favoring the defense of the 
fatherland. However, when the last war broke out, he immediately adopted 
the attitude of uncompromising hostility to the theory and practice of national 
defense. He declared that not even the defeat of Russia would matter for 
the working class. xVt that time the Marxian literature had just begun to 
discuss the problem of national and imperialist war. Lenin began devoting 
his attention to this problem and came to the conclusion that it is our duty 
to transform the imperialist war into a civil war. 

From the Provisional Government of Russia he demanded the immediate con- 
vocation of the Constituent Assembly, and after the October Revolution he dis- 
persed this very same Assembly. In the beginning Lenin was in favor of mili- 
tary Communism, but in 1921 he introduced the New Econmic Policy. Follov,ing 
Ihe socialization of the land in 1917, he favored in 1918 the formation of special 
committees composed of the poorest peasants, in order to split the peasantry 
thereby deciding the fate of the civil war in the villages. Starting out as an 
adherent of the idea of revolutionary war, he yet rejected this idea in 1918, 
and signed the Brest Litovsk peace treaty. And in 1920, he again favored the 
revolutionary war. this time against Poland. A deadly enemy of reformism, 
opposed to all dealings with the reformists, yet when conditions changed he de- 
clared in favor of the united front as a means of combating reformism altho it 
involved dealing wtih the reformists. Altho he favored a direct struggle against 
all parties of the Second International, yet at a certain stage in the development 
of the class struggle in England he favored the idea of supporting the British 
Labor Party and its coming into power. We could relate many more illustrations 

of the same kind. . . , .c i, * 

In view of all this, would not the activity of Lenin appear to be full of con- 
tradictions? Closet philosophers, adherents of the so-called rationalistic and 
logical formulae, could never adjust themselves to the "illogical" thinking of 


Lenin. But this proves only tliat tliese people have forgotten the whole Hegelian 
rule that the truth is concrete. Lenins quick changes of orientation were not 
caused by abstract reasons, but by changes of realties. He was no couservor of 
dead formulae and lifeless slogans. Lenins mobility in politics and tactics was 
always in accord with the daily changes in the mutual relation of forces between 

If we were to collect all that has been written on Lenin by his opponents, we 
should get one great historical rebus. According to some of his opponents, Lenin 
was a typical conspirator, a Blanquist, a Jacobin. According to others, Lenin 
was one of the greatest opportunists, a careerist, one who was determined upon 
getting into power, irrespective of the price. All these descriptions are mean- 
ingless because they are based upon single instances of Lenins activities, torn out 
from their connections with the whole, qualified according to the personal senti- 
ments of one or the other of his enemies, and stamped accordingly. 

Lenin was a dialectician in politics. That is, he knew how to attack, when 
necessary to retreat, always according to plan, to change directions, and when 
the situation became favorable again, to reassume the offensive, never for a 
second losing sight of his final aims. During the thirty years of his activities 
Lenin showed how changes of orientation could be effected without the Party or 
the class whom he represented breaking their necks, but on the contrary strength- 
ening their fighting ability and organization. From this point of view his entire 
political work has been a classical example of revolutionary class strategy. 

War and Revolution 

From the very beginning Lenin had a clear conception of the international 
nature of the class struggle. Long before the war he already felt himself a 
stranger at the international socialist parades where the phrase reigned svipreme 
and where no action was to be seen. As a result of his appearance at interna- 
tional congresses (Stuttgart, Copenhagen) there was formed a small and loosely- 
allied left wing. This "Russian sectarian" was treated condescendingly by the 
leaders of European reformism. Some of them looked upon Lenin's activities 
as a sort of sectarian madness, others considers it a result of the mystical traits 
of his Slavic character. Very few realized the significance of this coming leader 
of the interjiational working class movement. Only a few radical Germans, 
Polish social-democrats, and several comrades of other countries, stood in close 
political relations towards Bolshevism. Clara Zetkin relates the following story : 
At the congress in Stuttgart, held in 1907, Rosa Luxembourg, while pointing out 
to her the place occupied by Lenin, said: "See that man? Just watch the char- 
acteristics of his head. He looks as if he were ready to crush the whole world, 
that he would rather break his head than surrender." 

Lenin knew the international working class movement well for many years. 
But the international labor movement began to know Lenin only after the Octo- 
ber Revolution. And here we approach one of the most interesting questions 
connected with the theory and practice of the labor movement. How many peo- 
ple are familiar with the giant of scientific socialism whose name was Marx? A 
few hundreds of thousands. On the other hand, how many have heard of Lenin? 
Hundreds of millions. How is this to be explained? Marx forged the weapon 
of criticism for the struggle against the capitalist system, while Lenin employed 
this cHticism as a weapon to strike the enemy over the head. The oppressed 
millions have gotten a very clear conception of the significance of what Lenin 
was doing, while the materialistic conception of history, the theory of the sociali- 
zation of production, could be understood by a limited number of people. But 
the expropopriation of land, factories, and banks, the abolition of exploitation, 
the annulment of debts — such propaganda by action appealed to and was 
understood by the widest sections of the working class. 

One of the French bourgeois papers wrote after Lenin's death : "His thots were 
grey and theologically monotonous." For the bourgeois world the ideas of Lenin 
were really grey. But how did the international working class movement 
re.spond to his ideas? Millions of people understood his thots because they were 
simple and within the grasp of the masses. They were in harmony with the 
class instincts of these masses, if not always with their conscious understanding. 
But the true greatness of Lenin's "grey ideas could be seen only after these ideas 
had been transformed into "red actions." 

When at the end of 1914 Lenin spoke of the necessity of putting up the civil 
war against the imperialist war, not even the left wing could follow the trend 


of his thots. He therefore organized at Zimmerwald a left wing which assumed 
definite form only at Kienthal. But even after the conference at Kienthal one 
of its participant's, the French delegate Brisson, spolie of Lenin as of a queer sort 
of fellow who had been making publicly very childish propositions. 

From the very beginning Lenin had a very clear idea as to wliat results the 
imperialist war would bring to humanity, and that the capitalist world would 
under no circumstances be able to avoid civil war. This explains his radical 
slogans. But the international labor movement had been developing very slowly. 
It had to have a few more years of war before the masses would come back to 
their senses. And this had been Lenin's task, to awaken the masses to revo- 
lutionary action altho he was very little known to tlie wide proletarian masses. 

After the February Revolution the patriotic henchmen of all countries started a 
campiiign of vilification against Lenin as an agent of the Germnn General Staff. 
This story found wide circulation also among social-democratic circles. Only 
after the October Revolution did the masses come to learn the part played by 
Lenin at Zimmerwald and Kienthal where he demanded that the working class 
be aroused ti gainst the imperialist war. Only after he assumed the leadership of 
the greatest revolution in the history of the world did tlie masses come to know 
who Lenin really was. And since then the international labor movement has been 
divided into two groups as far as Lenin was concerned, enthusiastic friends and 
deadly enemies. 

Every day of the existence of Soviet Russia, every attaclc against Russia by 
its enemies, have contributed towards the increase of Lenin's popularity among 
the masses, thereby raising the importance of those organizations (the Com- 
munist International and the Red liiternational of Labor Unions) whose fiite was 
bound up with that of Soviet Russia. 

Lenin's deatli deeply impressed the working masses of the entire world. Most 
of the leaders of the international revolutionary movement have realized that 
Lenin has been the trail-blazer for the Commtinist Parties of every country in the 
world. At present the theoretical and practical features of Bolsiievism which 
were created by Lenin liave become factors of world importance. Since Bol- 
shevism has thrown off the chains of Czarist rule, it has become the object of 
universal attention and of the liatred of the imperialist bourgeoisie the world 
over. Bolshevism at present stands against imperialism and reaction as a real 
power. In the constant development of our movement, in the constant growtli 
of the Communist ideas and Communist Parties, in the extended influence of the 
Communist International and the Red International of Labor Unions, in the inter- 
nationalization of our methods of struggle and in the elasticity of our revolution- 
ary tactics, in the growing international unity between the various sections of the 
revolutionary proletariat — in all this we can see the firm hand and the great 
genius of Lenin. He stands out in the history of the international labor move- 
ment as one of its foremost and greatest leaders. 

The Father of the Communist International 

Lenin was the creator and the drivhig force of the Third Communist Inter- 
national, which he began building during the very first days of the world war. The 
moment the Parties of the Second International began openly to support their 
Governnu'nts, Lenin issued the following slogan : "The Second International is 
dead; long live the Third International." He was one of the organizers of the 
conference of Zimmerwald and Kienthal, where he fornuilated the basis for the 
left wing. During the years of war he ruthlessly opposed and attacked every 
shade of opportunism, particularly the meaningless pacifist abortion of Kautsky. 
But it was only after the October Revolution that conditions became ripe for the 
Third International, conditions which laid the national, territorial, social, and 
political foundations for the International of action. The Russian experiences 
served the Communist Internationnl as the guiding line of its policies. 

However, Lenin did not reject in an offhand manner everijthinfj that was created 
1\V the Second International. He understood how to differentiate between what 
was valuable and what was not. In his article entitled "The Third International 
and Its Place in History" he said the following: 

"Tlie First International laid the foundation for the international proletarian 
struggle for socialism. The Second International constitutes the epoch in which 
the ground has been prepared in a number of countries for a mass movement. 
The Third International utilizes the results of the activities of the Second Inter- 


national, breaks with tlie opportunistic, social-chiuivinistic, and petty-bourgeois 
tendencies, and begins to realize the dictatorship of the proletariat." 

In the same article Lenin explains what he c^uisidercd llie foundation of the 
Third International : 

'•The historic world significance of the Communist International consists in 
this, that it begins to put into effect the things which Murx has proven the- 
oretically to be a necessity, thereby realizing the consequences produced by the 
socialist and labor movement, that is, the dictatorship of the proletariat." 

Lenin gave the Communist Iiiterjiational not only its ideological direction by 
formulating many of the theses adopted by the Comintern, which hiive drawn the 
attention of the Communist Parties to the importance of the agrarian and colonial 
questions, to the mutual relations between the dictatorship and capitalist 
democracy, but he also participated directly and actively in the solution of all 
problems confronted by the Communist International. Between Congresses he 
always occupied himself very intensively with the problems of the Communist 
Parties all over the world. And when, in the beginning of 1920, he noticed the 
appearance of a sort of Utopian Communism, he began struggling against it in his 
famous booklet, "The Infantile Sickness of Communism," thereby dealing a death- 
blow to this tendency. 

After the formation of the Communist International, Lenin's main worry was 
to close the gates to the opportunist elements. The famous 21 points, which 
attracted so much attention, not only of the reformist press but also of the 
capitalist press, belong to Lenin. Lenin looked upon the Communist International 
not as a meeting place of all kinds of independent national parties, but as a abso- 
lutely homogeneous international fighting organization. However, he always had 
regard for the situations of the various countries, and never presented exag- 
gerated demands to the newly-formed Communist organizations, for he knew only 
too well how much effort it would require to educate politically and organization- 
ally and to put on the right track all those new Communist Parties which had 
just emerged from the ranks of the Social Democracy. He considered it the best 
means to pursue a clear revolutionary policy and, in this sense, he developed his 
activities in the Communist International. Lenin was, for the Third Interna- 
tional, what Marx was for the First. The revolutionary workers of all countries 
have still a lot to learn from Lenin's works, particularly from his actions, because 
Leninism and Communism are one and the same thing. 

Lenin and the Trade Unions 

The trade union movement also is very much indebted to Lenin. First of 
all because he has determined the correct place to be occupied by the trade 
xmions in the class struggle. He fought very bitterly all those in the trade 
unions of Europe that favored the existence of the trade unions as perfectly 
independent organizations from the political party of the proletariat. He 
proved in a number of cases that this idea of the independence of the unions 
from the political movement of the proletariat in reality means independence 
from revolutionary class politics, that the anarchists and reformists by preach- 
ing the idea of the independence of the trade unions are merely serving the 
Intei'ests ofjthe bourgeoisie. 

Lenin looked upon the trade unions as the elementary units of working class 
organization, "as the place where the masses are trained in organization, in 
collective management, and in Communism." He was at one and the same time 
opposed to over-estimating as well 'as under-estimating the importance of trade 
unions. He always insisted upon the necessity of taking part in these mass 
oi'ganizations, irrespective of the nature of their leadership. In his book "The 
Infantile Sicknesses of Communism," in the chapter entitled, "Shall Revolu- 
tionaries Participate in Reactionary Trade Unions?" he criticizes very ener- 
getically those Communist elements which at the first onslaught of the reaction- 
ary bureaucracy become pessimistic and throw out the slogan of : "Out of the 
Trade Unions, an immediate split." Such tactics he designates as: "Unpardon- 
able stuioidity which is equivalent to offering the greatest .service to the bour- 
geoisie." He says : "We must work wherever the masses are, criticize merci- 
lessly the labor aristocracy which is dominated by reformism, narrow craft 
egotism, and the ideas of bourgeois imperialism." Lenin would emphasize time 
and again that without the trade unions the Soviet Government could not have 
maintained itself in power for more than two weeks. The trade unions are 
the connecting link between the masses and the proletarian vanguard. It is 


only by our dnily activities that we can convince the masses that it is only we 
who are caijable of leadiiijr them from capitalism communism. 

The development of the revolutionary trade union movement followed that of 
the Communist movement. The Russian trade union movement was to the Red 
International of Labor Unions of the same importance as the Communist Party 
of Russia \\'^is to the Communist International. The Russian trade union move- 
ment had begun developing with particuar intensity after the October Revolution 
under the ideological and political leadership of Lenin. 

Lenin followed the development of the trade nnion movement with the same 
interest with which he followed that of the Commmiist movement. He would 
always explain that the Amsterdam International is the main support of the 
international bourgeoisie, and l^ecause of this was he so much interested in the 
R(>d International of Labor Unions, as can be seen from his communication to 
the First of the R. I. L. U. (July, 1921) where Lenin said : 

"It is hard to express in words the importance of this international trade 
union congress. Everywhere in the whole world the Communist ideas find ever 
more followers among the membership of the trade unions. The progress of 
Comnuniism does not follow a straight line. It is not regular, it has got to 
overcome thousands of obstacles, but it moves forward just the same. This 
international trade nnion congress will hasten the progress of Communism, 
which will be victorious in the trade union movement. There is no power on 
earth that is able to prevent the collapse of capitalism and the victory of the 
working class over the bourgeoisie." 

From this it can be seen what importance Lenin attached to the internation'al 
unification of the revolutionary trade union movement for the struggles of the 
working class. 

A Child of His People and Centuby 

Lenin was the child of his people and of his century. When called a Jacobin 
he would answer : "We, the Bolsheviks, are the Jacobins of the Twentieth 
Century, that is, the Jacobins of the proletarian revolution." Lenin was, as we 
have seen, the very embodiment of the idea of internationalism, 'and at the 
same time he was part and parcel of the mighty revolutionary movement that 
the oppressed masses of Russia have been carrying on for years and years. 
He was really one link in 'a long chain of struggles for the emancipation of 
the Russian proletariat and the Russian peasantry. From Radschev, thru 
Belinsky. Dobroljubov. Bakunin, Tschernischevsky, Netschajev. and Jelibov, 
thru the party "The Will of the People" and thru the group of "Emancipation of 
Labor.*' and thru many mdvnown representatives of the workers and peasants, 
which have been populating the prisons of the Czar and of Siberia, there runs 
the thread of struggle which unites Lenin with the Russian revolutionary move- 
ment. He was a man of an all-inclusive spirit : the press of our opponents 
would speak with irony about the utopian plans of Bolshevism. But in this 
irony there is to be found 'a profound truth. Lenin has been operating with 
whole continents. He was basing his policies upon the experiences of millions. 

Only the limitless and vast extent of Russia could give birth to such a 
spirit. This youth, born to a family of state functionaries and adopted by the 
proletariat, embo<lied and gave expression to the hatred of the working class of 
Russia accumul'ated thru centuries. He also reflected in himself the hatred of 
the peasantry against its oppressors that accumulated thru centuries. He had 
a deep sense for the sufferings of the toiling masses, even when the masses 
could not give expression to those sufferings in words. 

Lenin cnnnot be considered apart from the Russian workers and peasants 
land from the Russian history. Only within the social structure of Russia, the 
revolutionary struggles of whole generations, only by considering the achiev- 
ments of the Russian revolutionary movement since the ISth century and up 
to the last day, can we locate the prime factors that have brought about the 
appearance of Bolshevism in Russia at the cross-roads of two centuries. Only 
by taking all this into consideration can we properly estimate the moral, po- 
litical, national, and international physiognomy of Lenin. For us, his contem- 
poraries, who have been living within the circle of his influence, one thing is 
clear. liCnin was one of those men by whom humanity marks its historical 
path, concerning whom legends are being told in his lifetime, and the farther we 
go from the date of his death the clearer will stand before us Lenin's greatness 
and immortality. 


Exhibit No. 7 

[Source: "Lenin on the Historic Sisniflcance of tlio Tliird Internationiil," a pamphlet 
published by Martin liawrence, London: 19;54] 



Published by Martin Lawrence, 33 Great James Street, London. W. C. 1. and printed in 
Great Britain by Western Printing Services Ltd., Bristol, 1934 

The Third, Communist International 
Speech Recorded for the Gramophone 

In March of this year, 1919, there took place an international congress of 
Communists in Moscow. This Congress founded the Third, Communist Inter- 
national, the Union of the Workers of the whole world who are striving for 
the establishment of Soviet power in all countries. 

The First International, founded by Marx, existed from 1864 to 1872. The 
defeat of the heroic Paris workers — the famous Paris Commune — meant the 
end of this International. It is unforgettable, it is eternal, in the history of 
the struggle of the workers for their emancipation. It laid the foundation of 
that building of the World Socialist Republic, which we to-day have the 
happiness of constructing. 

The Second International existed from 1889 to 1914, until the war. This 
period was the period of the quietest and most peaceful developments of capi- 
talism, a period without great revolutions. The labour movement grew strong 
and mature in that period in a number of countries. But the leaders of the 
workers in the majority of parties, growing accustomed to peaceful times, lost 
the capacity for revolutionary struggle. When the War began in 1914, which 
for four years has drenched the earth with blood, a war between the capitalists 
for the division of protits, for power over the small and weak nations, these 
socialists passed over to the side of their governments. They betrayed the 
workers, they helped to drag out the slaughter, they became enemies of 
Socialism, they passed over to the side of the capitalists. The masses of the 
workers have "turned away from the:^ traitors to Socialism. Throughout the 
world a turn to revolutionary struggle has commenced. The War has shown 
that capitalism is doomed. A new order is taking its place. The traitors to 
Socialism have disgraced the old word "Socialism." 

Now the workers who have remained faitlifui to the cause of the overtlirow 
of the yoke of capital call themselves Communists. Throughout the world 
the Union of Communists is growing. In a number of countries Soviet power 
has already been victorious.^ It will not be long before we see the victory of 
Communism throughout the world, before we see the foundation of the World 
Federal Republic of Soviets. {Made in March 1919.) 

The Third International and Its Place in History 

The imperialists of the Entente countries are blockading Russia, endeavouring 
to cut off the Soviet Republic from the capitalist world, as a centre of infection. 
These people who boast of the "democracy" of their institutions are so blinded 
by hatred towards the Soviet Republic that they do not notice how they are 
making themselves ridiculous. Only think : the advanced, most civilised and 
"democratic" countries, armed to the teeth, which in a military respect have 
xmchallenged sway over the whole earth, are frightened as of lire of the ideolof/ical 
infection which proceeds from a ruined, hungry, backward, and, as they declare, 
even a half-savage country ! 

This contradiction alone opens the eyes of the labouring masses of all countries 
and helps to expose the hypocrisy of the imperialists Clemenceau, Lloyd George, 
Wilson, and their governments. 

But not only the blind hatred of the capitalists towards the Soviets, but also 
their squabbles among themselves help us, inciting them to injure one another. 
They have concluded among themselves a real conspiracy of silence, being fright- 
ened more than anything else of the spreading of correct news about the Soviet 
Republic in general, and of its official documents in particular. Howe^•er, the 

^ Lenin refers to the Soviet revolutions in Bavaria and Hungary. 


chief organ of the French hourgeoisie, Le Temps, has printed a communication 
about the founding in Moscow of the Third, Communist International. 

We express our respectful thanks for this to the chief organ of the French 
bourgeoisie, to this leader of French chauvinism and French imperialism. We 
are ready to send the newspaper Lc Tcmvn a solemn address in expression of our 
gratitude for having so succes-sfuUy and cleverly assisted us. 

From the wav in which the newspaper Lc Temps made its communication on 
the basis of our wireless message we can see with complete clarity the motive 
which impelled this organ of the money bags. It wanted to taunt Wilson, to 
sting him. I'ray see what kind of people you are allowing negotiations with ! 
These clever feliows who wrote at command of the money bags do not see how 
their attempt to scare Wilson with the P,olsheviks is turned in the eyes of the 
labouring masses into an advertisement for the Bolsheviks. Once again, our 
respectful thanks to the organ of the French millionaires! 

The foundation of the Third International took place in such a world situation 
that lui i)i'()liihitions, no petty or wretched tricks of the imperialists of the Entente 
or of the lackeys of capitalism, such as Scheideniann in Germany, Renner in 
Austria, could prevent the spreading of the news of this International among the 
working class of the whole world and of sympathy towards it. This situation has 
been created l»y the-iiroletarian revolution which is clearly growing everywhere, 
no longer just daily, but hourly. This situation has been created by the Soviet 
movement among the labouring masses which has already reached such a strength 
that it has really become ivtennitional. 

The First International (1864-1872) laid the foundation of the international 
organisation of the workers for the preparation of their revolutionary onslaught 
upon capital. The Second International (1889-1914) was the international or- 
ganisation of the proletarian movement, the growth of which extended widely 
but not without a temporary lowering of the height of the revolutionary level, 
without a temporary increase in opportunism which finally led to the shameful 
collapse of this International. 

The Third International was in fact founded in 1918 when the many years 
process of struggle against opportunism and social-chauvinism, particularly during 
the War, has led to the formation of Communist parties in a number of nations. 
Formally, the Third International was founded at its first Congress in Moscow 
in March 1919. And the most characteristic feature of this International, its 
vocation, is to fulfill and bring to life the heritage of Marxism and to realise the 
century-old ideals of Socialism and of the labour movement — this most character- 
istic feature of the Third International showed itself at once in the fact that 
the new. Third, "International Working Men's A.ssociation" has alreadij begun nou- 
to eoincide to a certain degree, with the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. 

The first International laid the foundation of proletarian. International struggle 
for Socialism. 

The Second International was the epoch of preparing the ground for a wide, 
mass spreading of the movement in a number of countries. 

The Third International gathered the fruits of the work of the Second Inter- 
national, cut off its opportunist, social-chauvinist, bourgeois and pettv-bourgeois 
filth and ber/an to realise the dictatorship of the proletariat. 

The International Union of the parties which are leading the most revolutionary 
movement in the world, the movement of the proletariat for the overthrow of the 
yoke of capital, now has beneath it a basis of unexampled firmness: several 
Soviet republics which on an international scale embody in life the dictatorship of 
the proletariat, its victory over capitalism. 

The world historical importance of the Third, Communist International con- 
sists in the fact that it has begun to bring to life Marx' greatest slogan the 
slogan which sums up the century-old development of Socialism and of the labour 
movement, tlie slogan which is expressed in the conception : the dictator.ship of 
the proletariat. 

This prophecy of genius, this theory of genius is becoming a reality T.atin words have now been translated into all the national languages of 
modern Europe— more than that, into all the languages of the world 

A new epoch in world history has begun. 

Humanity is throwing off the last form of slavery, capitalist or wage-slavery 

In emancii)ating itself from slavery humanity is for the first time approaching 
real freedom. '^^ * 

How could it happen that the first country to realise the dictatorship of the 
proletarit to organize a Soviet republic, was one of the most backward European 
countries? We shall hardly be mistaken in saying that it was precisely this 


contradiction between the backwardness of Russia and its "leap" to the highest 
form of democracy, through bourgeois democracy to Soviet or proletarian democ- 
racy, it was precisely this contradiction which was one of the reasons (in addition 
to the load of opportunist habits and philistine prejudices which lay upon the 
majority of the socialist leaders), which has particularly made diflBcult and 
slowed up the understanding of the role of the Soviets in the West. 

The working masses throughout the world guessed by instinct the importance 
of the Soviets as the weapons of struggle of the proletariat and as the forms of 
the proletarian state. But the "leaders," spoiled by opportunism, continued and 
still continue to pray to bourgeois democracy, calling it "democracy" in general. 

Is it astonishing that the realisation of the dictatorship of the proletariat has 
first of all shown the "contradiction" between the backwardness of Russia and 
its "leap" fhrough bourgeois democracy? It would have been astonishing if the 
realisation of n nctc form of democracy had been given us l:>y history without 
a riumbcr of contradictions. 

Any ^Marxist, even any person acquainted with modern science in general, if 
you asked him: "Is the even, or harmonious, proportional transition of different 
capitalist countries to the dictatorship of the proletariat likely?" — would un- 
doubtedly have answered this question in the negative. Neither evenness, nor 
harmony, nor proportion have ever existed in the world of capitalism or ever 
could exist. Every country has developed particularly prominently either one 
side or feature, or group of characteristics of capitalism and of the labour move- 
ment. The process of development has gone on une^•enly. 

When France carried out its great bourgeois revolution, awakening the 
whole continent of Europe to a historically new life, England was at the head 
of the counter-revolutionary coalition, although at that time it was much more 
developed capitalistically than France. Yet the English labour movement at 
this period anticipates with genius a great deal of future Marxism. 

Wlien England gave the world the first wide and really mass, politically 
organised, proletarian revolutionary movement. Chartism, on the European 
continent in most cases feeble bourgeois revolutions were taking place, but in 
France there broke out the first great civil war between proletariat and bour- 
geoisie. The bourgeosie defeated the various national detachments of the 
proletariat singly and in different ways in different countries. 

England was an example of a country in which, according to the expression 
of Engels, the bourgeosie, along with an aristocracy become bourgeois, created 
a more or less bourgeois upper section of the proletariat. An advanced capi- 
talist country for some generations was backward in the sense of the revo- 
lutionary struggle of the proletariat. France apparently exhausted the strength 
of the proletariat in two heroic revolts of the working class against the bour- 
geosie in 1848 and 1871 which gave an extraordinary great deal in the world 
historical sense. The hegemony in the International of the labour movement 
nest passed to Germany from the seventies of the nineteenth century, when 
Germany was economically behind both England and France. But when Ger- 
many caught up both these countries economically, that is towards the second 
decade of the twentieth century, then at the head of the Marxist labour party 
of Germany, which had been an example to the world, appeared a group of 
arch-scoundrels, of the filthiest swine bought by the capitalists, from Scheide- 
mann and Noske to David and Legien, of the most disgusting executioners of 
the workers in the service of the monarchy and the counter-revolutionary 

World history mai-ches unswervingly towards the dictatorship of the prole- 
tariat, but it marches along paths which are far from smooth, simple or direct. 

When Karl Kautsky was still a IMarxist, and not the renegade from Marxism 
he has become in his capacity of fighter for unity with the Scheidemanns and 
for bourgeois democracy against Soviet or proletarian democracy, at the very 
beginning of the twentieth century, he wrote an article, "The Slavs and the 
Revolution." In this article he explained the historical conditions which 
pointed to the possibility of the passing of the hegemony inside the international 
revolutionary movement to the Salvs. 

It has happened so. For a time— obvioiisly only for a short time — the hege- 
mony in the revolutionary proletarian International has passed to the Russians, 
as at different periods in the nineteenth century it was held by the English, 
then by the French, then by the Germans. 

I have had occasion to say more than once, in comparison with the advanced 
countries it was easier for the Russians to 'brgin a great proletarian revolution, 
but it will be more difficult for them to continue it and bring it to final victory, 
in the sense of the complete organisation of socialist society. 


It was easier for us to begin because in the first place, the unusual political 
backwardness— for twentieth century Europe— of the Tsarist monarchy called 
forth unusual strength in the revolutionary onslaught of the masses. Sec- 
ondly, the backwardness of Russia merged in an original fashion the prole- 
tarian revolution against the bourgeosie with a peasant revolution agauist the 
landlords. We started from this in October 1917 and we shoidd not have been 
so easily victorious if we had not started from this. x\.s far back as 1856, 
speaking of Prussia, Marx pointed out the possibility of au original combination 
of the proletarian revolution with a peasant war. The Bolsheviks from the 
beginning of 1905 persisted in the idea of the revolutionary democratic dic- 
tatorship of the proletariat and peasantry. Thirdly, the revolution of 1905 
did an extraordinary great deal for the political education of the masses of 
workers and of peasants both in the sense of making the vanguard acquainted 
with the "last word" in Socialism in the West, and also in the sense of the 
revolutionarv activity of the masses. Without such a "general rehearsal" as 
took place in 1905 the revolutions of 1917, both the bourgeois February one and 
the proletarian October one, would have been impossible. Fourthly, the geo- 
graphical conditions of Russia allowed it to hold out more than other countries 
against the external preponderance of the capitalist advanced countries. 
Fifthly, the peculiar relationship of the proletariat and the peasantry facili- 
tated the transition from the bourgeois revolution to the socialist one, facili- 
tated the influence of the proletarians of the towns ovev the semiproletarian, 
poorest sections of the toilers in the country. Sixthly, the long school of strike 
struggle and the experience of the European mass labour movement facilitated 
the appearance in a deep and rapidly sharpening revolutionary situation of 
such an original form of proletarian revolutionary organisation as the Soviets. 

This list is, of course, not complete. But we can limit ourselves to it mean- 

Soviet or proletarian democracy was born in Russia. In comparison with 
the Paris Commune a second world historical step was made. The proletarian- 
peasant Soviet republic has become the first stable socialist republic in the 
world. It is already impossible for it to die as a new type of state. It is 
now already not standing alone. 

For the continuing of the work of the construction of Socialism, in order to 
bring it to a conclusion, a very great deal is still called for. Soviet republics 
in more civilised countries in which the proletariat has greater weight and 
influence, have every chance of overtaking Russia once they step onto the path 
of the dictatorship of the proletariat. 

The bankrupt Second International is now dying and rotting alive. It is in 
fact playing the role of servant of the international bourgeosie. It is a real 
yellow International. Its most important ideological leaders .such as Kautsky, 
are praising honrc/eois democracy, calling it "democracy" in general or, what 
is still more crude and stupid, "pure democracy," 

Boui'geois democracy has outlived itself, as has the Second International, 
having done a historically necessary and useful work, when it was a question 
of the preparation of the working masses within the confines of this bourgeois 

The most democratic bourgeois republic has never been and never could be 
anything but a machine for the suppression of the toilers by capital, a tool of 
the political power of capital, of the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie. The 
democratic bourgeois republic promised power to the majority, proclaimed it, 
but could never realise it so long as private property in the land and of the 
means of production existed. 

"Freedom" in the bourgeois democratic republic was in practice freedom 
for the rich. The proletarians and labouring peasants could and should use 
it for preparing their forces for the overthrow of capital, for passing beyond 
bourgeois democarey, but in fact as a general rule the toiling masses under 
capitalism could not make use of democracy. 

For the time in the world, Soviet or proletarian democracy has created 
democracy for the masses, for the toilers, for the workers and small peasants. 

There has never before in the world been such a state power of the majority 
of the population, a power of that majority in practice, as is the Soviet power. 

It suppresses the " freedom " of the exploiters and their assistants, it takes 
away f I'om them the " freedom " to exploit, the " freedom " to make profit out 
of hunger, the " freedom " of struggle to restore the power of capital, the 
" freedom " to make agreements with the foreign bourgeoisie against the workers 
and peasants of their own fatherland. 


Let the Kantskys defend such a freedom. To do this they must be renegades 
from Marxism, renegades from socialism. 

The colhipse of the ideological leaders of the Second International, such as 
Hilferding and Kautsky, has in no way been so vividly shown as in their com- 
plete incapacity to understand the meaning of Soviet or proletarian democracy, 
its relation to the Paris Commune, its historical place, its necessity, as the form 
of the dictatorship of the proletariat. 

In number 74 of the newspaper Die Freihcit, the organ of the "Independent" 
(read, petty-bourgeois, philistine, middle-class) German Social Democracy, in 
the issue of the 11th February, 1919. there was published an appeal " To the 
revolutionary proletariat of Germany." 

This appeal was signed by the leadership of the party and the whole of its 
fraction in the "National Assembly," in the German " Constituent." 

This appeal accuses the Scheidenianns of trying to get rid of the Soviets and 
propose.s — don't lau^h ! — to conibiuc the Soviets with the Constituent, to give 
the Soviets definite state rights, a definite place in the constitution. 

To reconcile, to unite the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie with the dictatorship 
of the proletariat! How simple! Wliat a philistine idea of genius! 

It is only a pity that the united Mensheviks and Socialist Revolutionaries, 
those petty-bourgeois democrats who call themselves socialists, have already 
tried it in Russia under Kerensky. 

Whoever has ii«>t understood when reading Marx that in capitalist society, on 
every acute occa.sion. at every serious conflict of classes, it is only jjossible to 
have either the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie, or the dictatorship of the pro- 
letariat, has understood nothing of either the economic or the political teaching 
of Marx. 

But the pliilistine idea of genius of Hilferding, Kautsky and Co. of peacefully 
uniting the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie and the dictatorship of the prole- 
tariat demands a special examination if we wish to exhaust the economic and 
political stupidities crov.-ded into this remarkable and comic appeal of the 11th 

We must put this off for another article. 

Moscow, 15th April, 1919. 

First published in No. 1 of the Communist International, May 1st, 1919. 

The Heroes of the Beene Internationai. 

In the article The Third International and Its Place in History I pointed out 
one of the outstanding manifestations of the ideological collapse of the repre- 
sentatives of the old, rotten " Berne " International. This of the 
theoreticians of the reactionary Socialism which does not understand the dic- 
tatorship of the proletariat, is expressed in the proposal of the German "Inde- 
pendent " social-democrats to combine, unite and join the bourgeois parliament 
with Soviet power. 

The most prominent theoreticians of the old International, Kautsky, Hilferd- 
ing, Otto Bauer and Company have not understood that they are proposing to 
join the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie and the dictatorship of the proletariat! 
The people who made a name for themselves and won the sympathy of the 
workers by preaching the class struggle, by explaining its necessities, at the 
most decisive moment of the struggle for Socialism have not understood that 
they are completely abandoning all teaching of the struggle, that they are 
completely renouncing it and in practice passing into the camp of the bourgeoisie 
in trying to join the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie with the dictatorship of 
the proletariat. 

This sounds unlikely, but it is a fact. 

As a rare occurrence we have managed now to get in Moscow a fairly large 
number of foreign newspapers, though of odd issues, so that it is possible to 
put together in a little more detail, although, of course, far from fully, the 
history of the hesitations of the " Independent " gentlemen in the chief theo- 
retical and practical question of our time. This is the question of the relation- 
ship of dictatorship (of the proletariat) to democracy (hourgeois) or of Soviet 
power to bourgeois parlianientarianii-m. 

In his pamphlet The Dictatorship of the Proletariat (Vienna, 1918) Mr. 
Kautsky wrote that " Soviet organisation is one of the important phenom- 
ena of our times. It promises to obtain decisive importance in the grrnt decisive 
battles between capital and labour towards which we are marching" (page 33 


of Kautsky's pamphlet). And he added that the Bolsheviks had made a mistake 
in converting the Soviets from "the militant organisation of one class" into "a 
state organisation;' thereby "destroying democracy" (the same page). 

In my pamphlet The Proletarian Revolution and the Renegade Kautsky 
(Petrograd and Moscow 1918) I have analysed this argument of Kantskv in 
detail and shown that it is made up of complete forgetfulness of the verv founda- 
tions of the teaching of Marxism upon the state. For the state (every state, 
including the most democratic republic) is nothing but a machine for the sup- 
pression of one class by another. To call the Soviets the militant organisation 
of a class and to deny them the right of becoming a " state organisation " means 
in practice to renounce the A. B. C. of Socialism, to declare or to defend the in- 
violability of the bourgeois machine for the suppression of the proletariat (that 
is of the bourgeois democratic republic, of the bourgeois state), means in facl 
going over into the camp of the bourgeoisie. 

The stupidity of Kautsky's position is so glaring, the onslaught of the work- 
ing masses who are calling for Soviet power is so strong, that Kautsky and the 
Kautskyians have been forced to retreat shamefully, to fall into confusion, for 
they have not shown themselves able to admit honestly that they were mistaken. 
On February 9th, 1919, in the newspaper Freiheit, the organ of the " Inde- 
pendent " (of Marxism, but completely dependent on petty-bourgeois democracy) 
Social Democrats of Germany, there appeared an article by Mr. Hilferding 
which already calls for the conversion of the Soviets into state organisations, 
but along with the bourgeois parliament, with the " National Assembly," to- 
gether with it. On February llth, 1919, in an appeal to the proletariat of Ger- 
many the whole "Independent" party adopts this slogan (consequently Mr. 
Kautsky also who has forgotten about the statement he made in the Autuinn of 

This attempt to join the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie with the dictatorship 
of the proletariat is a complete renunciation of Marxism and of Socialism in 
general, it is forgetting the experience of the Russian Mensheviks and " Socialist 
Revolutionaries" who from May 6th, 1917 to October 25th, 1917 (old style) 
made the "experiment" of combining the Soviets as a "state organisation" 
with the bourgeois state and failed shamefully in this experiment. 

At the Party Congress of the "Independents" (at the beginnins- of March 
1919) the whole party adopted this position of sage combination of the Soviets 
with bourgeois parliamentarianism. But in No. 178 of Freiheit. on April 1.3th, 
1919, it is announced that the fraction of the " Independents " at the Second 
Congress of Soviets has proposed the resolution: 

"The Second Congress of Soviets is adopting the ground of the Soviet 
system. In accordance with this the political and economic system of 
Germany must be based on the organisation of Soviets. The Soviets of 
Workers' Deputies are the recognised representative of the toiling popula- 
tion in all spheres of political and economic life." 

Alongside with this the same fraction proposed to the Congress a project of 
"directives" (Richtlinien), in which we read : 

"The Congress of Soviets has full political power. The right to elect and 
to be elected into the Soviets is enjoyed without distinction of s^ex by those who 
fulfill socially necessary and useful labour without exploiting other peoples' 
labour power." 

We see, con.sequently, how the "Independent" leaders have turned out to be 
wretched philistines. completely dependent on thephilistine prejudices of the most 
l)ackward section of the proletariat. In the Autumn of 1818 these leaders, through 
the mouth of Kautsky, renounce any conversion of the Soviets into state organisa- 
tion. In March 1919 they abandon this position, hanging onto the tail "of the 
working masses. In April 1919 they upset the decision of their own Congress, 
passing over completely to the position of the Communists: "All power to the 

Such leaders are not worth much. To be an indication of the mood of the more 
backward section of the proletariat, going behind and not in front of the advance 
guard, it is not for this that leaders are needed. And these leaders are worth 
nothing at all for the complete lack of character with which they change their 
slogau.s. It is impossible to feel confidence in them. They will nlwaijs be ballast, 
a negative quantity In the labour movement. 


The most "left" of them, a certain Mr. Daumig, argued as follows at the Party 
Congress (see Frciheit of March 9th) : 

"Diiumig declares that nothuig divides him from the demand of the Com- 
munists : 'All power to the Soviets of Workers' Deputies.' But he nuist 
appeal against the putschism in practice carried out hy the Communist Party 
and against the Byzantinism " which they assume in regard to the masses 
instead of educating them. Putschist disrupting activity cannot take us 
forward. . . ." 

The Germans call putschism what old revolutionaries in Russia fifty years ago 
called "outbreak.s," "outbreak-fomenting," the organisation of petty conspiracies, 
attempts at assassination, uprisings, etc. 

In accusing the Communists of "putschism" Mr. Diiumig only proves thereb.y his 
own "Byzantinism," his servile crawlii.g before the pliilistine prejudices of the 
petty bourgeoisie. The "leftism" of such a gentleman which repeats a "fashion- 
iible" slogan out of cowardice before the masses, ivithout understanding the mass 
revotutionary movement, is not worth a broken half-penny. 

In Germany a powerful wave of spontaneous strike movements is taking place. 
There is an unheard of revival and growth of the proletarian struggle, greater, 
apparently, even than there was in Russia in 1905 when the strike movement 
reached a height so far unparallelled in the world. To talk of "outbreak-foment- 
ing" in the face of such a movement means that one is a hopeless tout and lackey 
of Philistine prejudices. 

The Philistine gentlemen, led by Diiumig, are dreaming probably of the kind of 
revolution (if in general they have any kind of idea in their head about revolution) 
in which the masses would rise all at once and completely organised. 

There are no svich revolutions and there cannot be such revolutions. Capitalism 
would not be capitalism if it did not keep the millions of the masses of toilers, the 
immense majority, in oppression, down-trodden. In want and in darkness. Capi- 
talism cannot collapse otherwise than by means of revolution which in the course 
of the struggle will raise masse.> wlio were hitherto unaffected. Spontaneous 
explosions are inevitable with the growth of revolution. Without this there has 
been no revolution and cannot be a revolution. 

That Communists are in favour of spontaneity is a lie of Mr. Diiumig, exactly 
the same sort of lie as we have many times heard from the Mensheviks and S. Rs. 
Communists are not in favour of spontaneity, do not stand for scattered outbreaks. 
Comnuuiists teach the masses organised, complete, comradely, opportune, mature 
action. This fact is not refuted by the philistine slanders of Messrs. Diiumig, 
Kautsky and Co. 

But the Philistines are not capable of understanding that Communists consider — 
and quite correctly — it is their duty to he iritii the struggling masses of the op- 
pressed and not with the heroes of Philistinism who stand on one side in cowardly 
expectation. When the masses are struggling mistakes are inevitable in the 
struggle. And the Communists seeing these mistakes, explaining them to the 
masses, getting the mistakes corrected, unswervingly insisting on the victory of 
con.sciousness over spontaneity, remain vith the niaf<ses. It is better to be with 
the struggling masses who in the course of their struggle gradually free them- 
selves from mistakes, than with the intellectuals, the phiiistines, the Kautskyians, 
who wait on one side for "complete victory," and this is a truth which it is not 
given to the Mr. Daumigs to understand. 

So much the for them. They have already passed into the history of the 
world revolution as cowardly phiiistines. reactionary whimperers, yesterday's 
servants of the Scheidemanns, to-day's pi'eachers of 'social peace," for it is a matter 
of indifference whether this preaching is hidden luider the form of combining a 
Constituent Assembly with Soviets or under the form of deep thinking condemna- 
tion of "putschism." 

Mr. Kautsky has broken the record in the cause of replacing Marxism by reac- 
tionary Philistine whining. He sticks to one note. He weeps over what has taken 
place, complains, cries, is horrified, preaches reconciliation ! All his life this 
knight of pitiful shape has written about the class struggle and about Socialism, 
but when matters have reached a maximum sharpening of the class struggle and 
the eve of Socialism, our sage is panic-stricken, bursts into tears and appeal's as a 
common philistine. In No. r>8 of the paper of the Vienna traitors to socialism, 
the Austerlitzes, the Renners, the Rauers, (Arbeiter Zietung, April 9th. 1919, 

" Obscure dogmatism. 


Vienna, morning edition), Kautsky, for tlie hundredth, if not for the thousandth 
time brings liis lamentations together : 

"Economic thought and economic understanding," he weeps, "have been 
driven from the lieads of all classes." "The long War has accustomed wide 
sections of the proletariat to a complete disregard for economic conditions 
and to a firm faith in the all-powerfulness of violence." 

There are the two "little points" of our "very learned" person ! 

"The cult of violence" and the collapse of production — that is why instead of an 
analysis of the real conditions of the class struggle he has fallen into the accus- 
tomed, old, primordial, philistine whining. "We expected," he writes, "that the 
revolution will come as a product of the proletarian class struggle . . . but the 
revolution has come as a consequence of the military collapse of the ruling system 
in Russia and in Germany. . . ." 

In other words this sage "expected" a peaceful revolution ! This is excellent ! 

But Mr. Kautsky has so lost his head that he has forgotten how he himself 
once wrote, when he was a Marxist, that war, most likely, will be the cause of 
revolution. Now in place of a calm analysis of what changes in the forms of 
revolution are hievitubic as a consequence of the War, our "theoretician" weeps 
for his broken "expectations !" 

". . . Disregard for economic conditions from wide sections of the proletariat !" 

What pitiful nonsense ! How well we know that philistine song from the 
Menshevik newspapers of the epoch of Kerensky ! 

The economist Kautsky has forgotten that when a country is ruined by 
war, and brought to the verge of doom, that the chief, main, fundamental, 
"economic condition" is the salvation of the worker. If the working class is 
to be saved from famine, from downright destruction, then it will be possible 
to restore ruined production. But in order to save the working class, the 
dictatorship of the proletariat is necessary, the only means of preventing the 
burdens and consequences of the war being thrown onto the shoulders of the 

The economist Kautsky has "forgotten" that the question of dividing the 
burdens of defeat is decided by class struggle and that the class struggle in the 
situation of a completely tormented, ruined, starving, dying country incvitahhj 
changes its form. This is no longer class struggle for a share in production, 
for carrying on production (for pi-oduction is at a standstill, there is no coal, 
the railways are spoiled, the war has thrown people out of their stride, the 
machines are worn out and so on and so on), but for salvation from famine. 
Only fools, even though they are very "learned," can in such a situation "con- 
demn" "consumers' soldiers' " communism and sui^erciliously teach the workers 
the importance of production. 

It is necessary in the first place, above all, in the very first place, to save 
the v^orker. The bourgeoisie wishes to preserves its privileges, to throw all 
the consequences of the war upon the worker, and that means to kill the 
workers with hunger. 

The working class wishes to be saved from hunger and in order to do this 
it must completely smash the bourgeoisie, in the first place guarantee consump- 
tion, even though a very meagre one, for otherwise it is impossible to drag out 
a semistarved existence, it is impossible to hang on until production is set 
going again. 

"Think of production !" says the well-fed bourgeois to the starving worker 
enfeebled by hunger, and Kautsky, repeating these songs of the capitalists in 
the shape of "economic science" is completely converted into a lackey of the 

But the worker says: "Let the bourgeoisie also be put on the ration of 
semi-starvation in order that the toilers may pull themselves together, may 
not perish." "Consumers' commmiism" is the condition for saving the worker. 
It is impossible to hesitate before any sacrifices in order to save the worker! 
Half a pound to the capitalists, a pound to the worker — this is the way it is 
necessary to get out of the condition of f.-imine, of ruin. The consumption of 
the starving worker is the foundation and condition for the restoration of 

Clara Zetkin was quite right to say to Kautsky that he "is going over to 
bourgeois political economy. Production is for man, not the contrary . . . ." 

The independent Mr. Kautsky, weeping over "the cult of violence" has shown 
exactly the same dependence on petty bourgeois prejudices. When even in 


1914 the Bolshevik party pointed out that the imperialist war will be turned 
into a civil war, Mr. Kautsky was silent, while remaining in one party with 
David and Co., who had declared this forecast (and this slogan) to be 
"madness." Kautsky absolutely did not understand the inevitability of the 
conversion of the imperialist war into a civil war and now throws his lack of 
understanding onto both of the sides struggling in the civil war ! Surely this 
is an example of reactionary, philistine stupidity? 

But if in 1914 failure to understand that the imperialist war must inevitably 
be turned into a civil war was merely philistine stupidity, now, in 1919, it is- 
already something worse. It is treachery to the working class. For civil war 
both in Russia, and in Finland, and in Latvia, and in Germany, and in 
Hungary, is w fact. Hundreds and thousands of times in his former works 
Kautsky recognised that historical periods occur when the class struggle is 
inevitably converted into civil war. This has come, and Kautsky has turned 
out to be in the camp of hesitating, cowardly petty-bourgeoisie. 

''The, spirit inspiring Spartacvs^ is in essence the spirit of Ludendorf 
. . . ISpartaciis is not onttj bringing about the doom of its oirn cause but 
strengthening the policy of violence of the majority socialists. Noske i» 
the antithesis of Spartacus . .'' 

These words of Kautsky (from his article in the Vienna Arbciter Zeitung) are 
so utterly stupid, base and vile that is suflicient just to point at them. A 
party which tolerates such leaders is a rotten party. The Berne International, 
to which Mr. Kautsky belongs, must be judged by us as it deserves, from the 
point of view of these words of Kautsky, as a yellow International. 

As a curiosity we will also mention the argument of Mr. Haase in his article 
on "The International at Amsterdam" {Freiheit May 4th, 1919). Mr. Haase 
boasts that on the colonial question he proposed a resolution by which "a 
League* of Nations, organized according to the proposal of the International 
. . . will have the task, before the realisatiofi of socialism" (note this!) . . . 
"of administering the colonies in the first place in the interests of the natives, 
and afterward in the interests of all the peoples united in the League of 
Nations. . ." 

Is not this really a pearl? Before the realisation of .socialism the colonies 
will be administered, according to the resolution of this sage, not by the 
bourgeoisie but by some kind, just, sweet "League of Nations!" How is this dif- 
ferent in practice from painting iu false colours the vilest capitalist hypocrisy? 
And these are the "left" members of the Berne International. . . 

In order that the render may more clearly compare the full stupidity, base- 
ness and vileness of the writings of Haase, Kautsky and Co. with the real 
situation in Germany, I will bring forward one other quotation. 

The famout capitalist Walter Rathenau has published a book. The New State. 
The book is dated March 24th, 1919. Its theoretical value is absolutely nil. 
But as an observer, Walter Rathenau is compelled to recognise the following: 

"We, a people of poets and thinkers, are philistines by our secondary 
occupation. . ." 

"To-day idealism is found only among the extreme Monarchists and the 

"The bare truth is a.s follows: we are going towards a dictatorship, 
either a proletarian or a pretorian one." 

This bourgeoise evidently imagines himself to be as "independent" of the 
bourgeoisie as Messrs. Kautsky and Haase imagine themselves to be "inde- 
pendent" of petty bourgeois Philistinism. 

But Walter Rathenau is head and shoulders above Karl Kautsky. for the 
latter whines, hiding himself in cowardly fashion from "the bare truth," while 
the former recognises it directly. 

2Sth May, 1919. 
First published in No. 2 of the Communist International. 

1st June, 1919. 

* Kautsky refers to the Spartacus Lensno foundofl by Karl Liebknecht ami Rosa 
Luxemburg which became the Communist Party of Germany hi November, 1018- 

94931— 40— app., pt. 1 8 


Exhibit No. 8 

[Source: A pamphlet published by the International Publishers, New York: second print- 
ing, 1935. In an edition of lOO.Odtl] 

A Letter to American Workers 

(V. I. Lenin) 
International Publishers 


When the October Revolution was less than a year old, August 20, 1918, Lenin 
submitted a written report to the American workers on the progress of the Pro- 
letarian Revolution in Russia and the obstacles which were still in the way of 
complete victory. 

Remembering the revolutionary traditions of the American working class and 
believing that "the American revolutionary proletarians are destined now to 
play an especially important role as irreconcilable foes of American imperialism." 
Lenin proceeded to explain the imperialist nature of the war which was still 
raging, the rapacious imperialist designs of the ruling classes of the warring 
nations, including the American, and the attempts of the capitalist governments 
to destroy the young Soviet Republic. In flaming words he showed how the 
Allies as well as the Central Powers were carrying on the wholesale slaughter 
for the division of spoils, for profits from the markets and colonies which would 
go to the victorious imperialist group. 

In words full of scorn, Lenin described the betrayals of those Socialist leaders, 
"the watchdogs of imperialism," who aided their capitalist governments by 
deluding the workers. He wrote : "Thrice they deserve utmost contempt, this 
scum of international Socialism, these lackeys of bourgeois morality." 

But the October Revolution made a breach in the strongest imperialist block. 
The Soviet Republic withdrew from the war and renounced all the imperialist 
covenants and policies of tsarism and of the Kerensky government which con- 
tinued them. The October Revolution established workers' rule, which was 
showing the road to power to the toiling masses of the capitalist countries and 
the colonies. World capitalism would not countenance that. Counter-revolution 
in Russia was given every possible aid. Armies wore fitted out and dispatched 
to the various borders from the Black Sea to the Pacific Ocean. Almost the 
very day Lenin was writing his Letter to the American Workers about these im- 
perialist attacks, American troops were disembarking in Vladivostock (August 
17, 1918) to join Japanese, British and French military detachments. 

Already on July 17, President Wilson had agreed to a "limited military in- 
tervention." On August 3, the American government was forced to admit publicly 
that it was in full accord with the other imperialist powers in the Russian inter- 
ventionist policy. But in the usual, hypocritical Wilsonian manner, common to 
all "democratic" governments, it declared that the troops wei-e being sent to 
"protect" the "stranded" Czechoslovak regiments, and to "guard the military sup- 
plies" from the Germans who were thousands of miles away. In "the most 
public and solenm manner," the American government infornied the people of 
Russia that "it contemplates no interference with the political sovereignty of 
Russia and no intervention in her internal affairs" (sic!). The Japanese govern- 
ment hurried to issue a statement containing similar assurances of "friendship 
to Russia" and proclaiming "its avowed policy of respecting the territorial in- 
tegrity of Russia and of abstaining from all interference in her internal affairs." 
To make sure that Russian territory in Siberia was "respected," Japan, which 
was to send over 7000 troops, soon landed 70,000 armed and equipped men. 
Troops of the other "respectors" of Russian territory were pouring in from 
Hong-Kong (British), Indo-China (French) and the Philippines (American). 
Not satis- fled with sending troops to the Far East, the American government sent military detachments to Archangel in the North with the cradle of 
the revolution, Petrograd, as a cherished objective. 

Lenin characterised these American invasions by declaring that the American 
government was joining "the Anglo-Japanese beasts for the purpose of stran- 
gling the first Socialist Republic." 

While Russian soil was being invaded, the enemies within, the Socialists- 
Revolutionaries, were organizing an attempt on the life of the German Ambassa- 
dor von INIirbach, in order to provoke the invasion of the German army from 
the West, and were plotting to behead the revolution bv killing Lenin. They 
succeeded in killing the German Ambassador and seriouslV wounding Lenin. 


It was in these circumstances that Lenin addressed himself directly to the 
American workers, telling them of the conditions under which the October 
Kevolution was fighting to achieve its aims. He also drew lessons for the 
American workers and, for that matter, for the workers of the whole world, to 
whom the success or failure of the Russian Revolution was closely tied up 
with their own struggles against the oppression of imperialism. 

With war again the order of the day and with Japanese imperialisni and 
Oerman fascism acting as spearheads in the threatening attack on the Soviet 
I'nion, Lenin's Letter is as timely today as it was when it was written. 

The lessons which Lenin outlined in the Letter are also timely at the present 
lime. To those who did not free themselves "from the pedantry of bourgeois 
intellectualism" and were questioning Lenin's policy of dealing with the French 
niilitari^its when the German troops were marching towards the Ukraine, he 
declared: "To throw back the rapacious advancing Germans we made use of 
the equally rapacious counter-interests of the other imperialists thereby serving 
I lie interests of the Russian and the international Socialist revolution." The 
>ame reasoning was used earlier by Lenin when he fought the "revolutionary" 
views of those who oppo.sed the signing of the Brest-Litovsk peace with the 
German government, necessary, according to Lenin, to "gain a breathing spell" 
for the revolution. 

Turning to American history, Lenin recalled how the leaders of the American 
Revolution sought the aid of other Powers in their struggle against the British. 
"The American people utilised the differences that existed between the French, 
the Spanish and the English, at times even fighting side by side with the 
armies of the French and Spanish oppressors against the English oppressors. 
First it vanquished the English and then freed itself (partly by purchase) from 
the French and the Spanish." 

There were voices in America, as elsewhere, who were bemoaning the "de- 
struction" which was entailed in the civil war brought about by the imperialist 
invasion and counter-revolution at home. Drawing again the parallel with 
epochal events in American history and suggesting that immediately after the 
Civil War the United States may have appeared "behind" that of the pre-war 
period, Lenin exclaimed : "But what a pedant, what an idiot is he who denies 
on such grounds, the greatest, world-historic, progressive and revolutionary 
significance of the American Civil War of 18G1-186.5 !" 

Those in the American labor movement who ranged themselves against Lenin 
and the Bolsheviks were prepared to admit the progressive character of the 
war for the abolition of ehutirl slavery, but, "frightened by the bourgeoisie and 
shunning the revolution, cannot understa)id or do not want to understand the 
necessity and the legality of civil war" in the struggle for the abolition of 
icage .slavery — "a vastly greater task." 

Over the heads of the treacherous and faint-hearted leaders, the Gomperses 
and the Hillquits, Lenin passed on to the American workers the great lesson 
"that there can be no successful revolution without crusliino the resistance of 
the exploiters" a truth "left as a heritage to the workers by the best teachers, 
the founders of modern Socialism." 

The workers of Germany and Austria are today smarting under the iron 
heel of fascism because the socialist leaders refused to follow this truth "taught 
by all revolutions" when the revolutions of 1918 occurred. Instead of allowing 
the workers' revolution to develop to its logical conclusion — proletarian dicta- 
torship and Soviet power — the socialist leaders permitted the counter-revolution 
of the bourgeoisie to develop to its logical conclusion — fascism. 

Under Lenin's tutelage, the Bolsheviks, on the other hand, mastered the 
"great truth" and continually urged the Russian workers and peasants to carry 
on tlie struggle until every vestige of capitalism in the city and on the land 
was destroyed and the workers' rule firmly entrenched. 

Every line of Lenin's Letter breathes with faith in the ultmiate triumph of 
the revolution, and not only in Russia, but throughout the world. Fervently 
confident that the international revolution would materialise, Lenin foresaw 
that "before the outburst of the international revolution there may be several 
defeats of separate revolutions." And, in his Letter he wrote: "We know that 
help from you, comrades American workers, will probably not come soon." 

Irrespective, therefore, of the temporary fortunes of the revolutions in other 
countries, the Russian Revolution must carry on. Thus, under the leadership 
of Lenin, the Russian workers conquered power, and under the leadership of 
his successor, Stalin, are now building successfully a classless society— - 


But the overthrow of the rule of capital, tlirougliout the world, is iiieYitahle. 
Writing in the darkest hour of the Russian Revolution — imperialist attacks on 
all sides, far-flung civil war — Lenin concluded his historic message to the 
American workers with the words which the toiling masses of all countries 
can inscribe on their banners: "We are wviiicible, because the world prole- 
tarian revolution is invincible.'' 

A Letter to American Workers, dated August 20, 1918, was first published 
in the United States in the December, 11)18 issue of the Class Striif/gle, a 
bi-monthly issued by an internationalist group in the Socialist Party. It was 
reprinted in pamphlet form from that magazine and widely distributed. It 
played an important part in developing among American Socialists an under- 
standing of the nature of imperialism, of the aims of the October Revolution 
and of the role of the social-chauvinists in the labor movement. It directly 
contributed to the building of the Left Wing in the Socialist Party which led 
later to the splitting away of the revolutionary elements and the formation of 
the Communist Party. 

The version of the Letter printed in the Class Struffffle and reprinted on 
numerous occasions in the periodical press, was not only inaccurate but also 
incomplete. Whole passages were left out, some of them giving Lenin's estimate 
of the role of American imperialism in the World War and stressing the im- 
perialist designs of both warring groups. Much of what Lenin wrote about 
the role of the reformist and centrist Socialists — the forerunners of present-day 
social-fascists — in the war was omitted. The translation was free, whole sec- 
tions of the Letter being rendered only in bare outline. 

Partial results of an inquiry conducted recently into the cause of the crim- 
inal mutilation of Lenin's ''Letter'' revealed that the English translation was 
made from the Swedish text published in a Stockholm paper. It is yet to be 
established who were responsible for the excisions and free tran.slation — those 
v.iio translated the ''Letter" from Russian into Swedish, or the English 

For the present edition, a completely new translation was made from the 
original Russian text, prepared l)y the Marx-Engels-Lenin Institute and pub- 
lished in Lenin's Collected Worl;s.'' This is, therefore, the first complete Eng- 
lish version of the historic message of Lenin to the Americjin worki^rs, which 
remains as fresh and appropriate today as when it was penned almost sixteen 
years ago. 

May, 1934. Alexander Tbachtenberg. 

A Letter to American Workers 

Comrades: A Russian Bolshevik who participated in the Revolution of 1905 
and for many years afterwards live in your country has offered to transmit 
my letter to you. I accepted his proposal all the more joyfully, because the 
American revolutionary proletarians are destined precisely now to play an 
especially important role as irreconcilable foes of American imperialism, which 
is the newest, strongest and latest to participate in the world-wide slaughter of 
nations for the division of capitalist profits. Precisely now the American 
billionaires, these contemporary slave-owners, have opened a particularly tragic 
page in the bloody history of bloody imperialism by giving their ajjproval — it 
makes no difference whether direct or indirect, whether open or liypooitically 
covered up — to an armed expedition of the Anglo-Japanese beasts for the pur- 
pose of strangling the first Socialist republic. 

The Iiistory of modern civilised America opens with one of those great, really 
liberating, really revolutionary wars of which there have been so few among 
the large numlier of wars of conquest that were caused, like the present 
imperialist war, by squabbles among kings, landowners and capitalists over the 
division of .seized lands and stolen profits. It was a war of the American 
people against English robbers who subjected America and held it in colonial 
slavery as these "civilised" bloodsuckers are even now subjecting and holding 
in colonial .slavery hundreds of millions of people in India, Egypt and in ail 
corners of the word. 

Since that time aliout 150 years have passed. Bourgeois civilisation has 
borne all its luxuriant fruits. By the high level of development of the produc- 
tive forces of organised human labour, by utilising machines and all the wonders 
of modern technic. America has taken the first place among free and cultured 
nations. But at the same time America has become one of the foremost conn- 


tries as regards the depth of the abyss which divides a handful of brazen 
billionaires who are wallowing in dirt and in luxury on the one hand, and 
niilliuns of toilers who are always on the verge of starvation. The American 
people, who gave the world an example of a revolutionary war against feudal 
subjection, now appears as a new, capitalist wage slave of a handful of billion- 
aires; finds itself playing the role of a hired assassin for the wealtliy gang, 
having strangled the Philippines in 1898 under the pretext of "liberating" them, 
and strangling the Russian Socialist Republic in 1918 under the pretext of 
"protecting" it from the Germans. 

But four years of the imperialist slaughter of peoples have not passed in 
vain. Obvious and irrefutable facts have exposed to the end the duping of 
peoples by the scoundrels of both tlie English and the German group of brigands. 
The four years of war have shown in their results the general law of capitalism 
as applied to war between murderers for the division of spoils : that he who 
was richest and mightiest profited and robbed the most; that he who was 
weakest was robbed, decimated, crushed and strangled to the utmost. 

In numljer of "colonial slaves" the English imperialist cutthroats have always 
been most powerful. English capitalists did not lose a foot of their "own" 
territory (acquired through centuries of robbery) but have managed to ap- 
propriate al tiie German colonies in Africa, have grabbed Mesopotamia and 
Palestine, have stifled Greece and have begun to plunder Russia. 

German imperialist cutthroats were stronger in regard to the organisation 
and discipline of "their" armies, but weaker in colonies. They have lost all 
their colonies, but have robbed half of Europe and throttled most of the small 
countries and weaker peoples. V/hat a great war of "liberation" on both sides ! 
How well they have "defended the fatherland" — these bandits of both groups, 
the Anglo-French and the German capitalists together with their lackeys, the 
social-chauvinists, i. e., Socialists who went over to the side of "their own" 
boiirgeoisie ! 

The American billionaires were richest of all and geographic;! lly tlie most 
secure. They have profited most of all. Tliey have made all, even the richest 
countries, their vassals. They have plundered hundreds of billions of dollars. 
And every dollar is stained with fllth ; filthy secret pacts between England and 
her "allies." between Germany and her vassals, pacts on the division of spoils, 
pacts on mutual "aid" in oppressing the workers and persecuting the Socialists- 
internationalists. Every dollar is stained with the filth of "profitable" military 
•deliveries enriching the rich and despoiling the poor in every country. And 
every dollar is stained with blood — of that sea of blood which was shed by tlie 
ten millions killed and twenty millions maimed in the great, noble, liberating and 
holy war, which was to decide whether the English or the German cutthroats 
will get more of the spoils, whether tlie English or the German executioners 
Avill be the first to smother the weak peoples the world over. 

While the German bandits established a record of military brutalities, the 
English established a record not only in the numl)er of looted colonies, l)ut also 
in the subtlety of their disgusting hyprocrisy. Precisely now the Anglo-French 
and American bourgeois press is spreading in millions upon millions of copie.s 
their lies and calumnies about Russia, hypocritically justifying their predatory 
expedition against her by the alleged desire to "protect" Russia from the 
Germans ! 

It is not necessary to waste many words to disprove this despicable and 
Iddeous lie ; it is sufficient to point out one well-known fact. When in October, 
1917, the Russian workers overthrew their imperialist government, the Soviet 
power, the power of revolutionary workers and peasants openly proposed a just 
peace, a peace without annexations and indemnities, a peace fully guarantee- 
ing equal rights to all nations — and proposed such a peace to all the countries at 

And it was the Anglo-French and the American bourgeoisie who refused to 
accept our proposals; they were the very ones who even refused to talk to us 
of a universal peace! Precisely thej were the ones who acted treacherously 
towards the interests of all peoples by prolonging the imperialist slaughter. 

Precisely they were the ones who, speculating upon a renewed participation 
■of Russia in the imperialist war, have shunned peace negotiations and thereby 
given a free hand to the no less marauding German capitalists in foisting upon 
Russia the annexationist and violent Brest Peace ! ^ 

1 The treaty signed in Brest-Litovsk, Marcli, 1918, between the Soviet Government and 
the Central Powers. — Ed. 


It is difficult to imagine a more disgusting piece of hypocrisy than the 
one with which the Anglo-French and American bourgeoisie now put upon us 
the "blame" for the Brest Peace. The very capitalists of those countries upon 
which it depended to turn Brest into general negotiations for world peace are 
now our "accusers." The scoundrels of Anglo-French imperialism who profited 
from the loot of colonies and from the slaughter of peoples, and who prolonged 
the war almost a year after Brest— they "accuse" us, the Bolsheviks, who 
proposed a just peace to all countries; us, who tore up, exposed and put to 
shame the secret criminal treaties of the former Tsar with the Anglo-French 

capitalists. . . 

The workers of the whole world, in whatever country they may live, rejoice 
with us and svmpathise with us, applaud us for having burst the iron ring of 
imperialist ties, dirtv imperialist treaties, imperialist chains, for having dreaded 
no sacrilice, however great, to free ourselves, for having established ourselves 
as a Socialist republic, even though rent asunder and plundered by the im- 
perialists, for having gotten out of the imperialist war and raising the banner 
of peace, the banner of Socialism over the world. 

No wonder that for this we are hated by the band of international im- 
perialists; no wonder that they all "accuse" us and that the lackeys of imperial- 
ism, including our right Socialist-Revolutiouiiries and Meusheviks, also "accuse" 
us. From the hatred of these watchdogs of imperialism for the Bolsheviks, 
as well as from the sympathy of class-conscious workers of all countries, we 
draw new assurance in the justice of our cause. 

He is no Socialist who does not understand that one cannot and must not 
hesitate to make even such a sacrifice as the sacrifice of a piece of territory, 
the sacrifice of a heavy defeat at the hand of capitalists of other countries, the 
sacrifice of indemnities to capitalists, in the interest of victory over the 
bourgeoisie, in the interest of transfer of power to the working class, in the 
interest of the Icfjinning of the international proletarian revolution. He is no 
Socialist who has not shown by deeds his readiness for the greatest sacrifices 
on the part of his fatherland so that the cause of the Socialist revolution may 
be pushed forward. 

For the sake of "their" cause, that is, the conquest of world hegemony, the 
imperialists of England and Germany have not hesitated to ruin and to strangle a 
whole series of countries from Belgium and Serbia to Palestine and Mesopotamia. 
And what about the Socialists? Shall they, for the sake of "their" cause — the 
liberation of the workers of the whole world from the yoke of capital, the 
conquest of a universal lasting peace — wait until they can find a way that entails 
no sacrifice? Shall they be afraid to commence the battle until an easy victory 
is "guaranteed"? Shall they place the integrity and safety of "their" fatherland, 
created by the bourgeoisie, above the interests of the world Socialist revolution? 
Thrice they deserve utmost contempt, this scum of international Socialism, these 
lackeys of bourgeois morality who think along these lines. 

The beasts of prey of Anglo-French and American imperialism "accuse" us of 
coming to an "agreement" with German imperialism. 

O hypocrites ! O scoundrels, who slander the workers' government and shiver 
from fear of that sympathy which is being shown us by the workers of "their 
own" countries ! But their hypocrisy will be exposed. They pretend not to un- 
derstand the difference between an agreement made by "Socialists" with the 
bourgeosie (native or foreign) against the workers, against the toilers, and an 
agreement for the safety of the workers who have defeated their bourgeoisie, 
with a bourgeoisie of one national color af/ainst the bourgeoisie of another color 
for the sake of the utilisation by the proletariat of the contradictions between 
the different groups of the bourgeoisie. 

In reality every European knows this difference very well, and the American 
people particularly, as I shall presently show, have "experienced" it in their own 
history. There are agreements and agreements, there are fagots et fagots as the 
French say. 

When the German imperialist robbers in February. 1918, threw their armies 
against defenseless, demobilised Russia, which staked its hopes upon the inter- 
national solidarity of the proletariat before the international revolution had 
completely ripened, I did not hesitate for a moment to come to a certain "agree- 
ment" with the French monarchists. The French captain Sadoul, who sympa- 
thised in words with the Bolsheviks while in deeds a faithful servant of French 
imperialism, brought the French officer de Lubersac to me. "I am a monarchist. 
My only purpose is the defeat of Germany," de Lubersac declared to me. "That 
goes without saying {cela va sans dire)," I replied. But this by no means pre- 


veuted me from coming to an "agreement" with de Lubersac concerning certain 
services that French olticers, experts in explosives, were ready to render by 
blowing up railroad traclis in order to prevent the advance of German troops 
against us. This was an example of an "agreement" of which every class-con- 
scious worker will approve, an agreement in the interests of Socialism. We 
shook hands with the French monarchist although we knew that each of us would 
readily hang his "partner." But for a time our interests coincided. To throw 
l)ack the rapacious advancing Germans we made use of the equally rapacious 
counter-interests of the other imperialists, thereby serving the interests of the 
Russian and the international Socialist revolution. In this way we served the 
interests of the working class of Russia and other countries, we strengthened 
the proletariat and weakened the bourgeoisie of the whole world, we used the 
justified practise of manoeuvring, necessary in every war, of shifting and waiting 
for the moment when the rapidly growing proletarian revolution in a number of 
advanced countries had ripened. 

And despite all the wrathful howling of the sharks of Anglo-French and Ameri- 
can imperialism, despite all the calumnies they have showered upon us, despite 
all the millions spent for bribing the right Socialist-Revolutionary, Menshevik 
and other social-patriotic newspapers, / would not liesiiate a single second to 
come to the same kind of an "agreement" with the German imperialist robbers, 
should an attack upon Russia by Anglo-French troops demand it. And I know 
perfectly well that my tactics will meet with the approval of the class-conscious 
proletariait of Russia, Germany, France. England, America— in a word, of the 
whole civilised world. Such tactics will lighten the task of the Socialist revolu- 
tion, will hasten its advance, will weaken the international bourgeoisie, will 
strengthen the position of the working class which is conquering it. 

The American people used these tactics long ago to the advantage of its 
revolution. When America waged its great war of liberation against the English 
oppressors, it was confronted with the French and the Spanish oppressors, who 
owned a portion of what is now the United States of North America. In its 
difficult war for freedom the American people, too, made "agreements" with one 
yroup of oppressors against the other for the purpose of weakening oppressors 
and strengthening those who were struggling in a revolutionary manner against 
oppression — in the interest of the oppressed masses. The American people 
utilised the differences that existed between the French, the Spanish and the 
English, at times even fighting side by side witli the armies of the French and 
Spanish oppressors against the English oppressors. First it vanquislied the Eng- 
lish and then freed itself (partly by purchase) from the French and the Spanish. 

The great Russian revolutionist Chernyshevsky once said : "Historical action 
is not the pavement of Nevski/ Prospect." He is no revolutionist who would 
"permit" the proletarian revolution only under the "condition" that it proceed 
easily, smoothly, with the co-ordinated and simultaneous action of the prole- 
tarians of different countries and witli a guarantee beforehand against defeat : 
that the revolution go forward along the broad, free, direct path to victory, with- 
out the necessity sometimes of making the greatest sacrifies, of "lying in wait 
in besieged fortresses," or of climbing along the narrov.'est, most impassable, 
winding, dangerous mountain road,s — he has not yet freed himself from the 
pedantry of bourgeois intellectualism, he will fall back again and again into the 
camp of the counter-revolutionary bourgeoisie, like our Right Socialist-Revolu- 
tionaries, Mensheviks and even (although more seldom) the Left Socialist- 

Along with the bourgeoisie these gentlemen like to blame us for the "chaos" 
of revolution, the "destruction" of industry, the unemployment, the lack of food. 
What hypocrisy these accusations are from people who greeted and supported 
the imi^erialist war or came to an "agi'eement" with Kereusky, who continued this 
war ! It is that very imperialist war which is the cause of all these misfortunes. 
The revolution that was born of the war must necessarily go through the terrible 
difficulties and sufferings left as the heritage of the prolonged, destructive, re- 
actionary slaughter of the peoples. To accuse us of "destruction" of industries, or 
of "terror," is either hypocrisy or clumsy pedantry ; it is an inability to under- 
stand the basic conditions of the raging class struggle, intensified to the utmost, 
which is called revolution. 

Generally speaking, such "accusers" limit themselves to a verbal recognition 
even when they do "recognise" the class struggle, but in deeds they revert again 

2 Reference is here made to the smoothness of the pavement of the famed main street of 
St. Petersburg, now Leningrad. — Ed. 


and asain to the philistine Utopia of "conciliation" and "collaboration" of classes. 
For the class struggle in revolutionary times has always inevitably and in every 
country taken on the form of a civil war, and civil war is unthinkable without 
the worst kind of destruction, without terror and limitations of formal democracy 
in the int(>rests of the war. Only suave priests, be they Christian or "secular" 
parliamentary or parlor Socialists, are unable to see, understand and feel this 
necessity. Only a lifeless "man in the case" ^ can shun the revolution for this 
reason instead ' of throwing himself into the fight with the utmost passion and 
decisiveness at a moment when history demands that the greatest problems of 
humanity be solved by struggle and war. 

The American people has a revolutionary tradition adopted by the best repre- 
sentatives of the American proletariat, who gave repeated expression to their full 
solidarity with us, the Bolsheviks. This tradition is the war of liberation against 
the English in the ISth and the Civil War iri the 19th century. If we are to take 
only into consideration the "destruction" of some branches of industry and 
national economy, America in 1870 was in some respects hehlnd 18G0. But whnt 
a pedant, what an idiot is he who denies on such grounds the greatest, world- 
historic, progressive and revolutionary significance of the American Civil War of 

Representatives of the bourgeoisie understand that it was worth letting the 
country go through long years of civil war, the abysmal ruin, destruction and 
terror which are connected with every war for the sake of the overthrow of 
Negro slavery and the overthrow of the rule of the slave-owners. But now, wlien 
we are confronted with the vastly greater task of the overthrow of capitalist 
wage slavery, the overthrow of the rule of the bourgeoisie — now the representa- 
tives and defenders of the bourgeoisie, as well as the socialist-reformists, fright- 
ened by the bourgeoisie and shunning the revolution, cannot understand and do 
not want to understand the necessity and the legality of civil war. 

The American workers will not follow the bourgeoisie. They will be with us 
for civil war against the bourgeoisie. The whole history of the world and the 
American labour movement strengthens my conviction. I also recall the words 
of one of the most beloved leaders of the American proletariat, Eugene Debs, 
who wrote in Tltc Appeal to Rcamn. I believe towards the end of 191.^. in the 
article "In Whose War I Will Fight" ^ (I quoted that article at the beginning 
of 1916 at a public meeting of workers in Berne, Switzerland) that he, Debs, 
would rather be shot than vote for loans for the present criminal and reaction- 
ary imperialist w^ar : that he, Debs, knows of only one holy and, from the 
standpoint of the proletariat, legal war. namely: the war against the capitalists, 
the war for the liberation of manliind from wage slavery ! 

I am not at all surprised that Wilson, the head of the American billionaires 
and servant of the capitalist sharks, has thrown Debs into prison. Let the 
bourgeoisie be brutal to the true internationalists, the true representatives of the 
revolutionary proletariat! The more obduracy and bestiality it displays, the 
nearer comes the day of the vict<n-ious proletarian revolution. 

We are blamed for the destruction caused by our revolution. . . . Who are 
the accusers? The hangers-on of the bourgeoisie, that very bourgeoisie, which 
has destroyed almost the whole of European culture during the four years of 
the imperialist war, and has brought Europe to a state of barbarism, savagery 
and starvation. That bourgeoisie now demands of us that we do not carry on 
our revolution on the basis of this destruction, amidst the remnants of culture, 
ruins created by the war, nor with men whom the war turned into savages. 
O how humane and righteous is that bourgeoisie ! 

Its servants accuse us of terror. . . . The English bourgeois has forgotten 
his 1649, the French his 1793." Terror was just and legal when used bv the 
bourgeoisie to its own advantage against feudalism. Terror became monstrous 
and criminal when workers and the poorest peasants dared to use it against 
the bourgeoisie! Terror was legal and just when used in the interests of a 
substitution of one exploiting minority for another. Terror became monstrous 
and criminal when it began to be used in the interests of an overthrow of ei^erij 
exploiting minority, in the interests of a really vast majoritv, in the interests 

cl.nJ^n Us^*shon — Brf ' ""^ ^^ Anton Chekhov. The hero is hemmed in by routine like a 

".l/;pe«/«, September 11, 1015. Reprinted in Voices of Revolt, Vol. IX, 

Speeches (if I'.ujrene V. Deb.s ' (International Publi.shers) p 6.3 Ed 

"The oxeeution of Khig Charle.s I and the suppression of opposition' durinj? the rggime 
Df Cromwell in England, and the terror during the Great French Revolution.— JS/d. 


of the proletariat and semi-proletariat, the working class and the poorest 

The international imperialist bourgeoisie has killed off ten million men and 
maimed twenty million in "its" war, the war to decide whether the English or 
the German robbers are to rule the world. 

If our war. the war of oppressed and exploited against oppressors and 
exploiters, results in half a million or a million victims in all countries, the 
bourgeoisie will say that the sacrifice of the former is justified, while the 
latter is criminal. 

The proletariat will say something altogether different. 

Now, amid the ravages of the imperialist war, the proletariat is thoroughly 
mastering that great truth taught by all revolutions and left as a heritage 
to the workers by their best teachers, the founders of modern Socialism. That 
truth is, that there can be no successful revolution without crush inr/ the resist- 
ance of the exploiters. It was our duty to crush the resistance of exploiters 
when we, the workers and toiling peasants, seized state power. We are proud 
that we have been doing it and are continuing to do it. We only regret that we 
are not doing it in a sutRciently firm and dererniined manner. 

We know that the fierce resistance of the bourgeoisie to the Socialist revolution 
is inevitable in all countries and that it will grow with the growth of this revo- 
lution. The proletariat will crush this resistance; it will definitely mature to 
victory and power in the course of struggle against the resisting bourgeoisie. 

Let "the kept bourgeois press howl to the whole world about each mistake made 
by our revolution. We are not afraid of our mistakes. Men have not become 
saints because the revolution has begun. The toiling classes, oppressed and 
downtrodden for centuries and forced into the clutches of poverty, savagery and 
ignorance, cannot be expected to bring about a revolution flawlessly. And 
the cadaver of bourgeois society, as I had occasion to point out once before,' 
cannot be nailed in a casket and buried. Defeated capitalism is dying and 
rotting around us, polluting the air with germs and poisoning our lives, grasping 
the new, the fresh, the young and the live with thousands of threads and bonds 
of the old, the rotten, the dead. 

For every hundred mistakes of ours heralded to the world by the bourgeoisie 
and its lackeys (including our own Mensheviks and Right Socialist-Revolu- 
tionaries) there are 10,000 great and heroic deeds, the greater and the more 
heroic for their simplicity, for their being unseen and hidden in the everyday 
life of an industrial quarter or provincial village, performed by men who are not 
used to (and who do not have the opportunity to) herald their achievements 
to the world. 

But even if the contrary were true— although I know this supposition to be 
incorrect — even if there were 10,000 mistakes for every 100 correct actions of 
ours, even in that case our revolution would be great and invincible, and so it 
will be in the ei/es of ivorld history, because, for the first time not the minority, 
not only the rich, not only the educated, but the real masses, the vast majority 
of toilers are thetnselves building a new life, are deciding hy their own experi- 
ence the most difficult problems of Socialist organisation. 

Each mistake in such a work, in this most honest and sincere work of tens 
of millions of simple workers and peasants for the reorganisation of their 
whole life, each such mistake is worth thousands and millions of "faultless" 
successes of the exploiting minority — successes in swindling and duping the 
toiler. For only through such mistakes will the workers and peasants learn 
to build a new life, learn to do without capitalists; only thus will they blaze 
a new trail — through thousands of obstacles — to a victorious Socialism. 

In carrying on their revolutionary work mistakes were made by our peasants 
who abolished all private landed property at one blow in one night, October 
25-26 (Nov. 7), 1917. Now, month after month, overcoming tremendoTis hard- 
ships and correcting themselves, they are solving in a practical way the most 
difficult tasks of oi-ganising new conditions of economic life — struggling with 
kulaks, securing the land for the toilers (and not for the rich people) and 
bringing about the transition to a Communist large scale agriculture. 

In carrying on their revolutionary work mistakes were made by our workers, 
who have now nationalised, after a few months, almost all the major factories 
and plants and who are learning from hard, day-to-day work the new task of 
managing whole branches of industry ; who are perfecting the nationalised 

■^ In a speech before the Joint Session of the Central Executive Committee, the Moscow 
Soviet and the Trade Unions on June 4, 1918. — Ed. 


economy; who are overcoming the powerfnl resistance of inertia, petty-bourgeois 
tendencies and seliisbness ; who are laying stone after stoue the foundation 
of a neiv social bond, of a new labor discipline, of a neiv power of trade unions 
of worliers over their members. 

In carrying on their revolutionary work mistakes are made by our Soviets, 
which were created back in 1905 by a mighty upsurge of the masses. The 
Soviets of workers and peasants are a new ti/pe of state, a new and higher 
type of democracy, the form of the dictatorship of the proletariat, a means of 
ruling the state ivithout the bourgeoisie and against the bourgeoisie. For the 
first time democracy serves the masses, the toilers, having ceased to be a 
democracy for the rich, as it stills remains hi all the bourgeois republics, even 
the most democratic ones. For the first time the popular masses are deciding, 
on a scale affecting hundreds of millions of people, the task of realising the 
dictatorship of proletarians and semi-proletarians — a task without the solution 
of which one cannot speak about Socialism. 

Let the pedants, or people hopelessly stuffed with bourgeois-democratic or 
parliamentary prejudices, shake their heads perplexedly about our Soviets, for 
instance, about the lack of direct elections. These people forgot nothing and 
learned nothing during the period of the great upheavals of 1914-1918. A 
union of the dictatorship of the proletariat with a new democracy for the 
toilers — civil war with the broadest involving of the masses in politics — such 
union is neither to be achieved at once nor is it to be fitted into the dreary 
forms of routine parliamentary democracy. A new world, the world of Social- 
ism, is what rises before us in its contours as the Soviet Republic. And it is 
no wonder that this world is not being born ready-made and does not spring 
forth all at once, like Minerva from the head of Jupiter. 

Wliile the old bourgeois-democratic constitutions spoke about formal equality 
and right of assembly, our proletarian and peasant Soviet constitution casts 
aside the hypocrisy of formal equality. When bourgeois republicans overthrew^ 
thrones they did not care about formal equality of monarchists with republicans. 
When we speak of the overthrow of the bourgeoisie, only traitors or idiots will 
seek to concede to the bourgeosie formal equality of rights. The "freedom of 
assembly" for workers and peasants is not worth a cent when the best buildings 
are in the hands of the bourgeosie. Our Soviets took away all the good build- 
ings from the rich both in town and country, and turned over all these buildings 
to the workers and peasants for their unions and meetings. That is our free- 
dom of assembly — for the toilers. That is the idea and content of our Soviet, 
Socialist Constitution ! 

And this is why we are so firmly convinced that our Republic of Soviets is 
imniicibJe no matter what misfortunes befall her. 

It is invincible, because each blow of frenzied imperialism, each defeat 
which we suffer from the international bourgeoisie, calls to struggle new strata 
of workers and peasants, teaches them at the price of the greatest sacrifices, 
hardens them and gives birth to new mass heroism. 

We know that help from you, comrades American workers, will probably not 
come soon, for the development of the revolution proceeds with a different 
tempo and in different forms in different countries (and it cannot be otherwise). 
We know that the European proletarian revolution also may not blaze forth 
during the next few weeks,** no matter how rapidly it has been ripening lately. 
We stake our chances on the inevitability of the international revolution, but 
fhis in no way means that we are so foolish as to stake our chances on the 
inevitability of the revolution within a stated short period. We have seen in 
our country two great revolutions, in 1905 and 1917, and we know that revolu- 
tions are made neither to order nor by agreement. We know that circumstances 
brought to the fore our Russian detachment of the Socialist proletariat, not by 
virtue of our merits, but due to the particular backwardness of Russia, and that 
before the outburst of the international revolution there may be several defeats 
of separate revolutions. 

Despite this, we are firmly convinced that we are invincible, because man- 
kind will not break down under the imperialist slaughter, but will overcome 
it. And the first country which demolished the galley chains of imperialist war, 
was our country. We made the greatest of sacrifices in the struggle for the 

* The German Revolution broke out about ten weeks after these lines were written. — F!d. 


demolitiou of this chain, but we &roA-e it. We are beyond imiDerialist depend- 
ence, we raised before the wliole world tlio banner of struggle for tlie complete 
OA'erthrow of imperialism. 

We are now as if in a beleaguered fortress until other detachments of the 
international Socialist revolution come to our rescue. But these detachments 
exist, they are more numerous than ours, they mature, they grow, they become 
stronger as the bestialities of imperialism continue. The workers sever con- 
nections with their social-traitors — the Gomperses, Hendersons, Renaudels, 
Scheidemauns, Renners."' The workers are going slowly, bvit unswervingly, 
towards Communist, Bolshevik tactics, towards the proletarian revolution, 
which is the only one capable of saving perishing culture and perishing mankind 

In a word, we are invincible, because the world px'oletarian revolution is 

N. Lenin. 

August 20, 1918. 

First published in Pravda, No. 178, August 22, 1918. 

Exhibit No. 9 

[Source: Excerpts from Stalin, by Boris Souvarine, former member of the Executive 
Committee of the Communist International. Alliance Booli Corporation. Longmans, 
Green & Company, New York : 1939] 

The disaster of the Spartacus League in Germany, then the assassination of 
Liebkuecht and of Rosa Luxemburg, has darkened the prospects of revolution. 
But Lenin renounced neither his hopes nor his plans, and he had at heart 
the creation of a Communist International. No one in his Party raised any 
objections when he proposed to summon to Moscow the Conference, to which, 
in addition to Bolsheviks of the various nationalities inside Russia, there was 
only one single delegate representing a Party, the German Communist Party. 
The other participants, recruited from refugees, emigres, exiles, represented 
no one but themselves. The Spartacus delegate brought with him the 
posthumous view of Rosa Luxemburg, definitely hostile to the premature forma- 
tion of a new International. This was also the definite opinion of the Central 
■Committee of his Party. After much hesitation, Lenin ignored it ; the Com- 
munist International was born of his will. He was not disturbed by a modest 
beginning. The political fortune of his own original group, of which he had 
been the only fully conscious member, seemed to him to promise the future 
victoi'y of the Communist embryo organization on a world scale. A few days 
after the conference had transformed itself into a congress the proclamation 
of a Soviet Republic in Hungary and then in Bavaria, where no Communist 
Party even existed, fortified him in his illusions, [pages 236, 237] 

The Politbureau, which had to conduct simultaneously both the foreign 
policy of the Soviet Union, which was necessarily opportunist, and the Com- 
munist International, which was, by definition, revolutionary, had embarked 
on a queer diplomatic adventure with the General Council of the Trade Union 
Congress using the bureaucratic Russian trade unions as intermediaries. 
Ipage 428] 

ilf ^ in H: il: if t- 

After a few days of this unparalleled democracy, the Opposition, faced with 
the dilemma of submission or insurrection, chose to retreat. On October 4th 
it oiTered to make peace with the Politbureau ... As for Zinoviev, he was 
invited to resign from the Presidency of the International, which he did soon 
after, [page 436] 


Stalin arranged his pieces on the chess-board, where the so-called Trotskyists 
were mere pawns : Ordjonikidze as Pi*esident of the Control Commission ; Chubar 
to fill the vacancy as alternate of the Politbureau ; Bukharin at the helm of 

* Right-wing leaders of American, English, French, German and Austrian socialist and 
trade union movements. — Ed. 


the International, without the title of President ; lesser personages everywhere 
where the machine did not appear to be secure, [page 440] 

Stalin had against him a body of more or less respectable traditions, static 
tendencies consecrated by time, and reputations which were long established, 
even overvalued . . . Having already postponed the Party Congress, first for 
some months, then for a year, he adjourned the Congress of the Soviets for 
the same period, and put off the Congress of the International to an unspecified 
date, [page 44S] 

Exhibit No. dO 

[Source: Excerpts from Questions and Answers to American Trade Unionists, Stalin's 
Interviev; with the First American Trade Union Delegation to Soviet Russia. Septem- 
ber 9, 1927. Workers Library Publishers, 39 East 125th Street, New York', N. Y. : 
First edition — December 15, 1927] 

^: :{: ^ ^ 4: >;: ^ 

Question II. Is it accurate to say that the Communist Party controls the 
Russian Government? 

Reply : . . . Perhaps the delegation did not mean control, but the guidance 
exercised by the Party in relation to the Government. If that is what the 
delegation meant by its question, then my reply is : Yes, our Party does guide 
the Government. And the Party is able to guide the Government because it 
enjoys the confidence of the majority of the workers and the toilers generally 
and it has the right to guide the organs of the Government in the name of this 
majority, [page 21] 

Question X. Is any money now heing sent to America to aid either the 
American Communist Party or the Communist paper, The ''Daily Worker''? 
If not how much do American Communists remit to the Third International 
in annual membership duesf 

Reply: If this has reference to the relations between the Communist Party 
of America and the Third International, I must say that the Communist Party 
of America, as part of the Communist International most likely pays afliliation 
fee to the Comintern. On the other hand, the Comintern, being the central 
body of the International Communist movement, we assume, renders assistance 
to the Communist Party of America whenever it thinks it necessary. I do not 
think there is anything surprising or exceptional in this. . . . What would 
hapiien if the Communist Party of America did appeal for aid to the Com- 
munist Party of the U. S. S. R.? I think the Communist Party of the U. S. S. R. 
w^ould render it whatever assistance it could. Indeed, what would be the worth 
of the Communist Party, a Party which is in power, if it refused to do what 
it could to aid the Communist Party of another country laboring under the 
yoke of capitalism. I would say that such a Communist Party would not be 
worth a cent. Let us assume that the American working class had come into 
power after overthrowing its bourgeoisie. Let us assume that the working 
class of another country appealed to the working class of America, which had 
emerged victorious in a great struggle against capitalism, for material aid; 
would the American working class refuse it? I think it would disgrace itself 
if it hesitated to give the assistance asked fon [page 44] 

Exhibit No. 11 

[Source: Excerpts from My Life as A Rebel, by Angelica Balabanoflf, first Secretary of the 
Vo"l"i^""'^ I"t<^'"°ational. Harper & Brothers Publishers, New York and London : 

Soon after the February Revolution the Soviets had issued a proclamation 
to the effect that "the time had come to begin a resolute struggle with the 
predatory aspirations of the governments of all countries." [page 153] 


In Russia, at the April meeting of tlie Bolshevik Party, Lenin liad already 
railed for a break with the Zimnierwald "Center" and for the immediate organi- 
zation of the Third International, [page 154] 

5). ***** * 

On January 24th Chicherin sent out, by radio, an invitation to an interna- 
tional Left iving gathering to be held in Moscow early in March . . . The 
manifesto which had been written by Trotsky, ended with the call : "Under 
the banner of Workers' Councils, of the revolutionary fight for power and the 
(llctarorship of the proletariat, under the bamier of the Third International, 
workers of all countries, unite !" [page 209] 

^;; * * * SfS * * 

I heard that Radek was organizing foreign sections of the "Communist 
Party,"' with headquarters in the Commissariat of Foreign Affairs. When I 
went there to investigate, I found that this widely heralded achievement was 
a fake. The members of these sections were practically all war prisoners in 
Russia : most of them had joined the Party recently because of the favour 
and privileges which membership involved . . . Radek was grooming them to 
return to their native countries, Where they were to "work for the Soviet 
Union." [page 210] 


Most of the thirty-five delegates and fifteen guests had been handpicked 
by the Russian Central Committee from so-called "Communist parties" in those 
smaller "nations" which had formerly comprised the Russian Empire, such as 
Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Ukraine, and Finland; or they were war prisoners 
or foreign radicals who happened to be in Russia at this time . . . the 
Socialist Propaganda League of America (made up mostly of Slavic immi- 
grants) . . . were represented by a Dutch- American engineer named Rutgers, 
[page 213] 


The Third International was born ! Immediately after this, Lenin, Trotsky, 
Zinoviev, Racovsky, and Flatten were chosen as the members of its first Bureau. 
[page 216] 


Meeting Trotsky as I was leaving the hall, I bade him good-bye. 

"Good-bye? AVhat do you mean?" he asked. "Don't you know that you are 
to be the secretary of the International? It has been discussed and Lenin 
is of the opinion that no one but you should have this position." [page 217] 

* :;: ***** 

I hardly had time to voice my first objection to Lenin when he inter- 
rupted me . . . 

"Party discipline exists for you too, dear comrade. The Central Committee 
has decided." (When Lenin had decided something before the Central Com- 
mittee had ratified his decision, he usually anticipated their action in this 
fashion so as to avoid superfluous discussion.) 

I knew it would be useless to argue. 

When I returned to my hotel a few minutes after this conversation with 
Lenin I received the confirmation of my apiwintment by telephone, [page 218] 
***** ^ * 

I was surprised to find that the topics of discussion at our Executive meet- 
ings had so little relation to the work we had been elected to do. (Later, 
when I discovered that our meetings were mere formalities and that real 
authority rested with a secret Party Committee, I was to understand the 
reason for this.) [page 222] 


It was the secret Party Committee, not the Comintern Executive, that had 
met "informally" and issued statements in my name, [page 224] 


I knew, of course, that the Bolshevik leaders controlled the International 
Executive . . . 

The next meeting of the International Executive was to take place in Petrograd 
in Zinoviev's magnificent oflices . . . [page 241] 


It become obvious that the Bolsheviks . . . were concerned only with the 
organization in each country of a militarized and miniature Bolshevik Party 
completely dominated by and dependent upon Moscow itself, [page 274] 

Exhibit No. 12 

[Source: A booklet published by the Publishing Office of the Communist International,. 
Moscow : 1920 ; and reprinted by the United Communist Party of America] 

Workers of the uorld unite! 



Adopted by the Second Congress July 17th— August 7th, 1920. Publishing 

Office of the Communist International, Moscow, 1920. Reprinted by 

United Communist Party of America 

(To be inserted in the U. C. P. edition of the Theses of the Second Congress 
of the Third (Communist) International.) 


Theses on the Trade Union Movement : 

Page 136, twenty-fifth line from bottom 

Instead of: "But the support of the revolutionary trades unions, which are 
in a state of ferment and passing over to the class struggle, must not be 
neglected" — 

This sentence should read: "But the support of the revolutionary trades 
unions must not result in an exodus of the communists from the opportunist 
unions which are in a state of ferment and are beginning to recognize the class 


Final text of clause 17, of the "Theses on the Fundamental Tasks 
of the Communist Interuationar' (see pages 120-121). 

§ 17. With regard to the Italian Socialist Party the Second Congress of 
the Third International recognizes that the revision of the programme, which 
had been last year decided upon by the Party Congress of Bologne, indicates 
a milestone along the road of communism and that the proposal which was sub- 
mitted to the National Council of the Italian Socialist Party by the Turin 
Section of the Party published in the journal "KOrdine Nuovo" (The New 
Order) of the 3rd of May, 1920, is in keeping with all the basic principles of 
the Third International. The Third International requests that at the next 
Congress of the Italian Socialist Party which is to be convened in accordance 
with the party regulations and the general rules regarding the affiliation to the 
Third International the Italian Socialist Party should discuss these proposals 
as well as all the decisions of the two Congresses of the Communists Inter- 
national, special attention to be paid to the resolutions on parliamentary frac- 
tions, trade unions and the non-communist elements of the party. 

Statutes of the Communist International 

In London in 1864 was established the first International Association of 
Workers, latterly known as the First International. The statute of the Inter- 
national Association of Workers reads as follows : 

"That the emancipation of the working class to to be attained by the working 
class itself; 

That the struggle for the emancipation of the working class does not mean 
a struggle for class privileges and mnnopolies but a struggle for equal rights 
and equal obligations, for the abolition of every kind of class-domination ; 

That the economic subjection of the worker under the monoy;)olists of the 
means of production, i. e., of the sources of life is the cause of servitude in 


all its forms, the cause of all social misery, all mental degradation and 
liolitical dependence. 

Tliat the economic emancipation of the working class is therefore the great 
aim which every political movement must be subordinated to; 

That all endeavors for this great aim have failed as yet because of the lack 
of solidarity between the various branches of industry in all countries, because 
of the absence of the fraternal tie of unity between the working classes of 
the different countries. 

That the emancipation is neither a local nor a national problem but a problem 
of a social character embracing every civilized country, the solution of which 
depends on the theoretical and practical co-operation of the most progressive 
countries ; 

That the actual simultaneous revival of the workers' movement in the 
industrial countries of Europe, on the one hand, awakens new hopes, while, 
on the other hand, it is a solemn warning of the danger of relapse into the 
old errors and an appeal for an immediate union of the hitherto disconnected 

The Second International which was established in 18S9 at Paris had under- 
taken to continue the work of the First International. In 1914, at the outbreak 
of the world slaughter, it suffered a complete failure. Undermined by oppor- 
tunism and damaged by the treason of its leaders who had taken the side 
of the bourgeoise — the Second International perished. 

The Third Communist International which was established in March, 1919, 
in the capital of the Russian Socialist Federated Soviet Republic, in the cit.v 
of Mt)scow, solemnly proclaims before the entire world that it takes upon itself 
to continue and to complete the great cause begun by the First International 
Workers" Association. 

The Third Communist International was formed at a moment when the 
Imperialist slaughter of 1911-1918, in which the Imperialist bourgeoise of the 
various countries had sacrificed twenty million men, came to an end. 

Keep in mind the Imperialist war ! This is the first appeal of the Com- 
munist International to every toiler wherever he may live and whatever lan- 
guage he may speak. Keep in mind that owing to the existence of the capitali-'^t 
system a small group of Imperialists had the oijportuuity during four loog 
years to compel the workers of various countries to cut each other's throats. 
Keep in mind that the bourgeois war has cast Europe and the entire world 
into a state of extreme destitution and starvation. Keep in mind that unless 
the capitalist system is overthrown the repetition of such criminal war is not 
only possible but inevitable. 

The Communist International makes its aim to put up an armed struggle 
for the overthrow of the International bourgeoisie and to create an Interna- 
tional Soviet Republic as a transition stage to the complete abolition of the 
State. The Communist International considers the dictatorship of the prole- 
tariat as the only means for the liberation of humanity from the horrors of 
capitalism. The Communist International considers the Soviet form of goverii- 
ment as the historically evolved form of this dictatorship of the proletariat. 

The Imperialist war is responsible for the close union of the fates of the 
workers of one country with the fates of the workers of all other countries. 
The imperialist was emphasizes once more what is pointed out in the stature 
of the First International : that the emancipation of labor is neither a local. 
nor as a national task, but one of a social and international character. 

The Communist International once for ever breaks with the traiiitions of 
the Second International which in reality only recognized the white race. The 
Communist International makes it its task to emancipate the workers of the 
entire world. The ranks of the Connnunist International fraternally unite 
men of all colors : white, yellow, and black — the toilers of the entire world. 

The Communist International fully and unreservedly upholds the gains 
of the gx'eat proletarian revolution in Russia, the first victorious socialist 
revolution in the world's history, and calls upon all workers to follow the same 
road. The Communist International makes is its duty to support with all 
the power at its disposal every Soviet Republic, wherever it may be formed. 

The Communist International is awai-e that for the purpose of a speedy 
achievement of victory the International Association of Workers, whicii is 
struggling for the abolition of capitalism and the establishment of Communism, 
should possess a firm and centralized organization. To all intents and purposes 


the Commiuiist International shonlrt represent a single universal Communist 
party, of which the parties operating in every country form individual 
sections. The organized apparatus of the Communist International is to 
secure to the toilers of every country the possibility at any given moment of 
obtaining the maximum of aid from the organized workers of the other 

For this purpose the Communist International confirms the following items 
of its statutes : 

§ 1. The new International Association of Workers is established for the 
purpose of organizing common activity of the workers of various countries 
who are striving towards a single aim: the overthrow of capitalism; the 
establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat and of the International 
Soviet Republic; the complete abolition of classes, and the realization of 
socia/sm — the first step of Communist Society. 

§ 2. The new International Association of Workers has been given th.e name 
of The Communist International. 

§ 3. All the parties and orgnnizations comprising the Conununist Interna- 
tional bear the name of the Communist party of the given country (section 
of the Communist International). 

§ 4. The World Congress of all parties and organizations which form part 
of the Communist International, is the supreme organ of this International. 
The World Congress confirms the programmes of the various parties com- 
prising the Communist International. The World Congress discusses and 
decides the more important questions of programme and tactics, which are 
connected with the activity of the Communist International. The number 
of decisive votes at the World Congress for every party and organization is 
determined by a special regulation of the Congress ; it is found necessary to 
strive for a speedy establishment of a standard of representation on the 
basis of the actual number of the members of the organization and the real 
influence of the party in question. 

§ 5. The World Congress elects an Executive Committee of the Communist 
International which serves as the leading organ of the Communist Interna tioiial 
in the interval between the convention of World Congresses, and is respon- 
sible only to the World Congress. 

§ 6. The residence of the Executive ('ommittee of the ('ommunist Inter- 
national is every time decided at the World Congress of the Communist 

§ 7. A Special World Congress of the Communist International may be 
convened by regulation of the Executive Committee, or at the demand 
of one-half of the* number of the parties which were part of the Communist 
International at the last World Congress. 

§ 8. The chief bulk of the work and greatest responsibility in the Executive 
Committee of the Communist International lie with the party of that country 
where, in keeping with the regulation of the World Congress, the Executive 
Committee finds its residence at the time. The party of the country in ques- 
tion sends to the Executive Committee not less thtui five members with a 
decisive vote. In addition to this, one representative with a decisive vote is 
sent to the Comnuniist International from ten or twelve of the largest com- 
munist parties. The list of these representatives is to be confirmed by the 
Universal Congress of the Communist Interna tional. The remaining parties 
and organizations forming part of the Communist International enjoy the 
right of sending to the Executive Committee one representative each with a 
consultative votei. 

§ 9. The Executive Committee is the leading organ of the Communist Inter- 
national between the conventions ; the Executive Committee publishes in no 
less than four languages the central organ of the Communist International 
(the periodical 'The Commimist International"). The Executive Committee 
makes the necessary appeals on behalf of the Communist International, and 
issues instructions obligatory on all the parties and organizations which form 
part of the Communist International. The Executive Committee of the Com- 
munist International enjoys the right to demand from the affiliated pa.rties 
the exclusion of groups of members who are guilty of the infringement of 
international pi-oletarian discipline, as well as the exclusion from the Communist 
International of parties guilty of the infringement of the regulations of the 
World Congress. In the event of necessity the Executive Connnittee organizes 
in various countries its technical and auxiliary bureaus, which are entirely 
under the control of the Executive Committee. 


S 10. The Executive Committee of the Communist International enjoys the 
right fo include in its ranlvs representatives of organizations and parties not 
accepteil in tlie Communist International, but whicli are sympathetic towards 
conunimism ; these are to have a consultative vote only. 

§ 11. The organs of all the parties and organizations forming part of the 
Communist International as well as of those which are recognized sympathizers 
of tiie Communist International, are obliged to publish all official regulations of 
the Connnunist International and of its Executive Committee. 

§ lli. The general state of things in the whole of Europe and of America 
makes it necessary for the conanunists of the wliole world an obligatory forma- 
tion of illegal connnunist organizations along wuth those existing legally. 
The Executive Connnittee should take charge of the universal application of 
this rule. 

§ 13. All the most important jiolitical relations between the individual parties 
forming part of the Communist Inerniitional will generally be carried on through 
the nieilium of the Executive Committee of the Communist International. In 
oases of exigency direct relations will be established, with the provision, how- 
ever, that tiie Executive Connnittee of the Communist International shall be 
informed of them at the same time. 

§ 14. The Trade Unions that have accepted the Communist platform and 
are united on an international scale under the control of the Executive Com- 
mittee of the Communist International, form Trade Union Sections of the 
Communist International. The Communist Trade Unions send their representa- 
tives to the World Congresses of the Communist International through the 
medium of the Communist parties of their respective countries. Trade Union 
sections of the Comnuinist International delegate a representative with decisive 
vote to the Executive Committee of the Communist International. The Execu- 
tive Committee of the Communist International enjoys the right of sending 
a representative with decisive vote, to the Trade Union section of the Com- 
munist International. 

§ 15. The International League of Communist Youth is subordinate to the 
Communist International and its Executive Committee. One representative of 
the PJxecutive Committee of the International League of Communist Youth with 
a decisive vote is delegated to the Executive Committee of the Communist 
International. The Executive Connnittee of the Communist International, on the 
other hand, enjoys the right of sending a representative with a decisive vote 
to the Executive organ of tlie International League of Youth. Organization 
relations between the League of Youth and the Communist party are basically 
defined in every country after the same system. 

S 10. The Executive Committee of the Communist International confirms 
the Interna tiorial Secretary of the Communist Women's Movement, and organizes 
a women's section of the Communist International. 

S 17. In case a member of the Communist International goes to another 
country, he is to have the fraternal support of the local members of the 
Third Interna tional. 

The Fundamental Tasks of the CommunIvST International 
theses adopted by the second congress 

1. A characteristic feature of the present moment in the development of the 
international Communist niovement is the fact that in all the capitalist coun- 
tries the best representatives of the revolutionary proletariat have completely 
understood the fundamental principles of the Communist International, namely, 
the dictatorship of the proletariat and the power of the Soviets; and with a 
loyal enthusiasm have placed themselves on the side of the Communist Interna- 
tional. A still more important and great step forward is the unlimited sym- 
pathy with these principles manifested by the wider masses not only of the 
proletariat of the towns, but also by the advanced portion of the agrarian 

On the other hand two mistakes or weaknesses in the extraordinarily rapidly 
increasing international Communist movement have shown themselves. One 
very serious weakness directly dangerous to the success of the cause of the 
liberation of the proletariat consists in the fact that some of the old leaders 
and old parties of the Second International— partly half-unconsciously yielding 
to the wishes and pressure of the masses, party consciously deceiving them in 
ordei' to preserve their former role of agents and supporters of the bom-geoisie 

94931 — 40 — a pp.. pt. 1 9 


inside tlie Labor movement — are declaring tlieir conditional or even uiicdijcli- 
tioual affiliation to the Third International, while remaining-, in reality, in the 
whole practice of their party and political work, on the level of the Second 
International. Snch a state of things is absolutel.v inadmissible, because it 
demoralizes the masses, hinders the development of u strong Commnnist Party, 
and lowers their respect for the Third International by threatening repetition 
of such betrayals as that of the Hungarian Social-Democrats, who had rapidly 
assumed the disguise of Communists. The second much less important mistake. 
which is, for the most part, a malady inherent in the paity growth nf the 
movement, is the tendency to be extremely "left." which leads to an erroneous 
valution of the role and duties of the party in respect to the class and lo the 
mass, and of the obligation of the revolutionary Communists to work in the 
bourgeois parliaments and reactionary labor unions. 

The duty of the Communists is not to gloss over any of the weaknesse>« of 
'.heir movement, but to criticize them openly, in order to get rid of them 
promptly and radically. To this end it is necessary, 1) to establish concretely, 
especially on the basis of the already acquired practical experience, the meaning 
of the terms: "Dictatorship of the Proletariat" and "Soviet Po^wer", and, 2 
to point out what could and should be in all countries the immediate and sys- 
tematic preparatory work to realizing these formulas; and. 3) to indiear*- the 
ways and means of curing our movement of its defects. 



2. The victory of Socialism over Capitalism — as the fii-st step to Cummu- 
iiism — demands the accomplishment of the three following tasks by the prole- 
tariat, as the only really revolutionary class : 

The first task is to lay low the exploiters, and above all the bourgeoisie as 
their chief economic and political representative : to defeat them completely : to 
crush their resistance; to render impossible any attempts on their part to veini- 
pose the yoke of capitalism and wage-slavery. 

The second is to inspire and lead in the footsteps of the revolutionary advance 
guai'd of the proletariat, its Communist party — not only the whole proletariat 
or the great majority, but the entire mass of workers and those exploited )>y 
capital ; to enlighten, organize, instruct, and discipline them during the course 
of the bold and mercilessly firm struggle against the ex])loiters; to wrench this 
enormous majority of the population in all the capitalist countries out of their 
state of dependence on the bourgeoisies; to instill in them, through practical 
experience, confidence in the leading role of the proletariat and its revolutionary 
advance guard. The third is to neutralize or render harmless the inevitable 
lluctuations between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, between bourgeois 
democracy and Soviet Power, on the part of that rather numerous class in all 
advanced countries — although constituting a minority of the population — the 
small owners and proprietors in agriculture, industry, connnerce, and the cor- 
responding layers of intellectuals, employees, and so on. 

The first and second tasks are independent ones, demanding each of them 
their special methods of action in respect to the exploiters and to the exploited. 
The third task results from the two first, demanding only a skilful, timely, 
supple combination of the methods of the first and second kind, depending on 
the concrete circumstances of each separate case of fluctuation. 

3. Under the circumstances which have been created in the whole world, and 
especiall.^■ in the most advanced, most powerful, most eidightened and freest 
capitalist countries by militarist imperialism — oppression of colonies and 
weaker nations, the universal imperialist slaughter, the "peace" of Versailles — 
to admit the idea of a voluntary submission of the capitalists to the will of the 
majority of the exploited, of a peaceful, reformist iiassage to Socialism, is not 
only to give proof of an extreme petty bourgeois stupidity, but it is a direct 
deception of the workmen, a disguisal of capitalist wage-slavery, a concealment 
of the truth. This truth is that the bourgeoisie, the most enlightened and dem- 
ocratic portion of the bourgeoisie, is even now not stopping at deceit and crime, 
at the slaughter of millions of workmen and ])easants, in order to retain the 
right of private ownership over the means of prodiK'tion. Oidy a violent defeat 
of the iKmrgeoisie, the confiscation of its propert.v, the annihilation of the 
entire bourgeois governmental apparatus, parliamentary, judicial, military, 
bureaucratic, administrative, municipal, etc., even the individual exile or in- 
ternment of the most stubborn and dangerous exploiters, the establishment of 


a strict control over them for the repression of all inevitable attempts at re- 
sistance and restoration of capitalist slavery— only such measures will be able to 
guarantee the complete submission of the whole class of exploiters. 

On the other hand, it is the same disguising of capitalism and bourgeois 
democracy, the same deceiving of the workmen, when the old parties and old 
leaders of the Second International admit the idea that the majority of the 
workers and exploited will be able to acquire a clear Socialist consciousness, 
firm Socialifst convictions and character under the conditions of capitalist 
enslavement, under the yoke of the bourgeoisie, which assumes an endless 
variety of forms — the more refined and at the same time the more cruel and 
pitiless, the nwjre cultured the given capitalist nation. In reality it is only 
when the advance guard of the proletariat, supported by the whole class as the 
only revolutionary one, or a majority of the same, will have overthrown the 
exploiters, crushed them, freed all the exploited from their position of slaves, 
improved their conditions of life immediately at the expense of the expropriated 
capitalists — ttnly after that, and during the very course of the acute class strug- 
gle, it will be iwssible to bring about the enlightenment, education and organ- 
ization of the widest masses of workers and exploited around the proletariat, 
under its influence and direction ; to cure them of their egotism, their non-soli- 
darity, their vic-es and weaknesses engendered by private ownership, and to 
transform them into free workers. 

4. For victory over capitalism a correct correlation between the leading 
Communist Party — the revolutionary class, the proletariat — and the masses, 
i. e.. the whole mass of workers and exploited, is essential. If the <Jon>munist 
Party is really the advance guard of the revolutionary class, if it includes the 
best representatives of the class, if it consists of perfectly conscious and loyal 
Communists, enlightened by experience gained in the stubborn revolutionary 
struggle — if it can be bound indissolubly with the entire life of its class, and 
thiough the latter with the whole mass of the exploited, and if it can inspire 
full confidence in this class and this mass, only then is it capable of leading the 
proletariat in the pitiless, decisive, and final struggle against all the forces of 
capitalism. On the other hand, only under the leadership of such a Party will 
the proletariat be able to employ all the force of its I'evolutionary onslaught, 
nullifying the inevitable apathy and partial resistance of the insignificant mi- 
nority of the demoralized labor aristocracy, the old trade-union and guild 
leaders, etc. Only then will the proletariat be able to display its power whicli 
is inmaeasurably greater than its share in the population, by reason of the 
economic organization of capitalist society itself. Lastly, only when practically 
freed from the yoke of the bourgeoisie and the bourgeois governing apparatus, 
only after acquiring the possibility of freely (from all capitalist exploitation ► 
oi-ganizing into its own Soviets, will the mass — i. e., the total of all the workei-)^ 
and exploited — employ for the first time in history all the initiative and energy 
of tens of millions of people, formerly crushed by capitalism. Only when the 
Soviets will become the only State apparatus, will effectual participation in the 
administration be realized for the entire mass of the exploited, who, even under 
the most cultured and free bourgeois democracy, remain practically excluded 
from participation in the administration. Only in the Soviets does the mass 
really begin to study, not out of books, but out of its own practical exijerience, 
the work of Socialist construction, the creation of a new social discipline, a free 
union of free workers. 



5. Tlie present moment in the development of the International Communist 
movement is characterized by the fact that in a great majority of capitalist 
countries the preparation of the proletariat or the realization of its dictator- 
ship is not yet completed — very often it has not even been begun systemati- 
cally. It does not follow that the proletarian revolution is not possible, for the 
economic and political situation is extraordinarily rich in inflammable mate- 
rial which may cause a .sudden flame: the other condition for a revolution, 
besides the preparedness of the proletariat, namely, the general state of crisis 
in all the ruling and all the bourgeois pai-ties. is also at hand. But \t follows 
from the above that for the moment the duty of the Comnuinist Parties consist.*; 
in accelerating the vevolution, without provoking it artificially until sufficient 
preparation has been made; such preparation is to be carried on and empha- 
sized by revolutionary activity. On the other hand, the above instance in the 


history of mauy Socialist parties draws our attention to the fact, that the 
"recognition" of the dictatorship of the proletariat should not remain only 

Therefore the principal duty of the Communist Parties, from the point of 
view of an international proletarian movement, is at the present moment the 
uniting of the dispersed Communist forces, the formation in each country of 
a single Communist Party (or the strengthening and renovation of the already 
existing one) in order to perform the work of preparing the proletariat for 
the conquest of the governing power, and especially for the acquisition of power 
under the form of a dictatorship of the groups and parties that recognize the- 
'dictatorship of the proletariat. This work has not been sufficiently subjected 
to the radical reformation, the radical renovation, which ai-p necessary for it 
to be recognized as Communist work, and as corresponding to the tasks on 
the eve of proletarian dictatorship. 

v6. The conquest of political power by the proletariat does not put a stop to 
its class struggle against the bourgeoisie ; on the contrary, it makes the struggle 
especially broad, acute, and pitiless. All the groups, pai'ties, leaders of the 
Labor movement, fully or partially on the side of reformism, the "center," 
and so on, turn inevitably, during the most acute periods of the struggle, either 
to the side of the bourgeoisie or to that of the wmvering ones, and the most 
dangerous are added to the number of the unreliable friends of the vanciuished 
proletariat. Therefore the preparation of the dictatorship of the prolcrariat 
■demands not only an increased struggle against all reformists and "'centrist" 
tendencies, but a modification of the nature of this struggle. 

The struggle should not be limited to an explanation of the fallacy of ^nch 
tendencies, but it should stulibornly and mercilessly denounce any leader in the 
Labor movement who may be manifesring such tendencies, otherwise the ])ro- 
letariat will not know whom it must trust in the n\ost decisive struggle 
against the bourgeoisie. The struggle is such, that the slightest hesitation or 
weakness in the denunciation of those who show themselves to be reformists 
or "centrists," means a direct increase of the danger that the power of the 
proletariat may be overthrown by the liourgeoisie, which will on the morrow 
utilize in favor of the counter-revolution all that which to short-sighted people 
appears only as a "theoretical difference of opinion" to-day. 

7. In particular one cannot stop at the usual doctrinaire refutation of all 
"'collaboration" between the proletariat and the hourgeoisie: 

The simple defense of "liberty and equality," under the condition of preserving 
the right of i>rivate ownership of the means of production, becomes transformed 
under the conditions of the dictatorship of the proletariat — which will never 
be able to suppress completely all private ownershii) — into a "collaboration " 
with the bourgeoisie, v.'hich undermines directly the power of the working class. 
The dictatorship of the proletariat means the strengthening and defense, by 
means of the ruling power of the State, of the "non-liberty" of the exploiter 
to continue his work of oppression and exploitation, the "inequality" of the 
proprietor (i. e., of the person who has taken for himself personally the means 
•of production created by public labor and the proletariat). That which before 
the victory of the proletariat seems but a theoretical difference of opinion on 
the question of "democracy," becomes inevitably on the morrow of the victoi'y, 
ji question which can only be decided by force of arms. Consequently, without 
a radical modification of the whole nature of the struggle against the "centrists" 
and "defenders of democracy," even a preliminary preparation of the mass for 
the realization of a dictatorship of the proletariat is impossible. 

8. The dictatorship of the proletariat is the most decisive and revolution- 
ary form of class struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie. Such 
a struggle can be successful only when the revolutionary advance guard of 
the proletariat leads the majority. The preparation of the dictatorship of 
the proletariat demands, therefore, not only the elucidation of the bourgeois 
nature of all reformism, all defense of "democracy," with the preservation of 
the right to the ownership of the means of production ; not only the denunci- 
ation of such tendencies, which in practice mean the defense of the bourgeoisie 
inside the Labor movement — but it demands also the replacing of the old 
leaders by Communi.sts in all kinds of proletarian organizations, not only 
political, but industrial, co-operative, educational, etc. The more lasting, com- 
plete, and solid the rule of the bourgeois democracy has been in any country, 
the more has it been possible for the bourgeoisie to apixtint as labor leaders 
men who have been educated by it, imbued with its views and prejudices and 
very frequently directly or indirectly bribed by it. It is necessary to remove 


Jill these representatives of the Labor aristocracy, all such "bourgeois" work- 
men, from their posts and replace them by even inexperienced workers, so 
long as these are in unity with the exploited masses, and enjoy tlie latter's 
confidence in the struggle against the exploiters. The dictatorship of the pro- 
letariat will demand the appointment of such inexperienced workmen to the 
most responsible State functions, otlierwise the rule of the Labor government 
will be powerless and it will not have the support of the masses. 

9. The dictatorsliip of the proletariat is the most complete realization of a 
leadership over all workers and exploited, who have been oppressed, beaten 
down, crushed, intimidated, disi>ersed, deceived by the class of capitalists, oa 
the part of the only class prepared for such a leading role by the whole his- 
tory of capitalism. Therefore the preparation of the dictatorship of the 
proletariat must begin immediately and in all places by means of the following 
methods among others : 

In every organization, vniion, association — beginning with the proletarian ones- 
at first, and afterwards in all those of the non-proletarian workers and ex- 
ploited masses (political, pi'ofessional, military, co-operative, educational, 
sporting, etc., etc.) must be formed groups or nuclei of Communists — mostly 
open ones, but also secret ones which become necessary in each case when the 
arrest or exile of their juembers or the dispersal of their' organization is 
threatened ; and these nuclei, in close contact with one another and with the 
central Party, exchanging experiences, carrying on the work of propaganda, 
campaign, organization, adapting themselves to all the branches of social life, 
to all the various forms and subdivisions of the working masses, must syste- 
matically train themselves, the Party, the class, and the masses by such 
multiform work. 

At the same time it is most important to work out practically the necessary 
methods on the one hand in respect to the "leaders" or responsible repre- 
sentatives, who are very frequently hopelessly infected with petty bourgeois 
and imperialist prejudices : on the other hand, in respect to the masses, who. 
especially after the imperialist slaughter, are mostly inclined to listen to and 
accept the doctrine of the necessity of leadership of the proletariat as the 
only way out of capitalistic enslavement. The masses must be approached 
with patience and caution, and with an understanding of the peculiarities, the- 
special psychology of each layer, each profession of these masses. 

10. In particular one of the groups or nuclei of the Communists deserves 
tJie exclusive attention and care of the party, namely, the parliamentary fac- 
tion, i. e., the group of members of the Party who are members of bourgeois 
representative institutions (first of all state institutions, then local, municipal, 
and others). On the one hand, such a tribune has a special importance in the 
eyes of the wider circles of the backward or prejudiced working masses; 
therefore, from this very tribune, the Communists must carry on their work 
of propaganda, agitation, organization, explaining to the masses why the 
dissolution of the bourgeois parliament (Constituent Assembly) by the national 
Congress of Soviets was a legitimate proceeding at the time in Russia (as it 
will be in all countries in due time). On the other hand, the whole history 
of bourgeois democracy has made the parliamentary tribune, e.specially in the 
more advanced countries, the chief or one of the chief means of unbelievable 
fijiancial and political swindles, the means of making a career out of hypocrisy 
and oppression of the workers. Therefore the deep hatred against all parlia- 
ments in the revohitionary proletariat is perfectly justified. Therefore the 
Communist Parties, and all parties adhering to the Third International, espe- 
cially in cases when such parties have been formed not by means of a division 
in the old parties and after a long stubborn struggle against them, but by 
means of tiie old parties passing over (often nominally) to a new position,, 
must be very strict in their attitude towards their parliamentary factions, 
demanding their complete subordination to the control and the direction of the 
Central Committee of the party; the inclusion in them chiefly of revolutionary 
workmen; the carrying out at Party meetings of a most intensive analysis of 
the Party press and of the parliamentary speeches, from the point of view of 
their Communist integrity ; detailing of parliament members for propaganda 
among the masses ; the exclusion from such groups of all those who show a 
tendency towards the Second International, and so forth. 

11. One of the chief causes of difficiilty in the revolutionary Labor movement 
in the advanced capitalist countries lies in the fact that owing to colonial 
dominions and super-dividends of a financial capital, etc., capital has been able to 
attract a comparatively more solid and broader group of a small minority of the 


labor aristocracy. The latter enjoy better conditions of pay and are most of all 
impregnated with the spirit of ijrofessional narrow-mindedness, bonrgeois and 
imperialist prejndices. This is the true social '"support" of the Second Inter- 
national reformists and centrists, and at the present moment almost the chief 
social support of the bourgeoisie. 

Not even preliminary preparation of the proletariat for the overthrow of tlie 
bourgeoisie is possible without an immediate, systematic, widely organized and 
open struggle against the group which undoubtedly — as experience has already 
proved — will furnish plenty of men for the White (iuards of the hourgfoisie after 
the victory of the proletariat. All the parlies adhering to the Third International 
must at all costs put into practice tlie mottoes: "deeper into the masses," "in 
closer contact with tln^ masses," understanding by the word "masses" the entire 
mass of workers and those exploited by tapitalism, especially the less organized 
and enlightened, the most oppressed and less adaptable to organization. 

The proletariat becomes revolutionary in so far as it is not enclo-^ed within 
narrow guild limits, in so far as it participates in all the events and branches 
of public life, as a leader of the whole working and exploited mass ; and it is 
completely impossible for it to realize its dictatorship unless it is ready for and 
capable of doing everything for the victory over the boiugeoisie. The experience 
of Russia in this resi)ect has a theoretical and practical importance; where the 
proletariat could not have realized its dictatorship, nor acciuired the respect and 
confidence of the whole working mass, if it had not borne most of the sacrifices 
and had not suffered from hunger more than all tlu- other groups in this mass, 
during the most difhcult moments of the onslaught, war and blockade on the part 
of the imiversal bourgeoisie. 

In particular it is necessary for the Conmnmist Parly and the whole advanced 
proletariat to give the most absolute and self-denying support to all the masses 
for a larger general strike movement, which is alone able under the yoke of 
capitalism to awaken jiroperly. arouse, enlighten, and organize the masses, and 
develop in them a full c(infi(lence in the leading role of the revolutionary pro- 
letariat. Without such a preparation no dictatorship of the proletariat will be 
possible, and those who are capable of preaching against strik<'s. like Kautsky 
in Germany. Turati in Italy, are not to l)e suffered in the ranks of parties adhering 
to the Third International. This concerns still more, naturally, such trade-union 
and parliamentary leaders, as often betray the the worklngmen l»y teaching them 
to make the strike an instrument of reform and not of revolution (Jouhaux in 
France. Gompers in America, and Thomas in England.) 

12. For all countries, even for most free "legal" and "peaceful" ones in the sense 
of a lesser acuteness in the class struggle, the period has arrived, when it has 
become absolutely necessary for every Communist party to join systematically 
lawful and unlawful work, lawful and unlawful organization. 

In the most enlightened and fi'ee countries, with a most "solid bourgeois- 
democratic regime, the governments are systematically recurring, in spite of 
their false and hypocritical assurances, to the method of keeping secret lists of 
Communists: to endless violations of their constitutions f<ir the semi-secret sup- 
port of White Guards and the murder of Communists in all countries; to .secret 
preparations for the arrest of Communists: the introduction of provocateurs 
among the Communists, etc. Only the most reactionary petty bourgeoisie, by 
whatever high-sounding "democratic" or pacifist phrases it might disguise its 
ideas, can dispute this fact or the necessary conclusion ; an immediate formation 
by all lawful Communist parties of unlawful organizations for systematic unlawful 
work, for their complete preijaration at any moment to thwart any steps on the 
part of the bourgeoisie. It is especially necessary to carry on unlawful work in 
the army. navy, and police, as, after the imperialist slaughter, all the govern- 
ments in the world are becoming afraid of the national armies, open to all 
peasants and workingmen. and they are .<etting up in secret all kinds of select 
military organizations recruited from the bourgeoisie and especially provided with 
Improved technical equipment. 

On the other hand, it is also necessary, in all cases without exception, not 
to limit oneself to unlawful work, but to carry on also lawful work over- 
coming all diflSculties, founding a lawful press and lawful organizations under 
the most diverse, and in case of need, frequently changing names. This is 
now being done by the illegal Communist parties in Finland, in part in 
Germany, Poland, Latvia, etc. It is thus that the I. W. W. in America should 
act. as well as all the lawful Communist parties at present, in prosecutors 
start prosecutions on the basis of resolutions of the congresses of the Com- 
munist International, etc 


The absolute necessity of the principle of unlawful and lawful work is 
determined not only by the total aggregate of all the peculiarities of the 
given movement, on the very eve of a proletarian dictatorship, but by the neces- 
sity of proving to the bourgeoisie, that there is not and can not be any branch 
of the work of which the Communists have not possessed themselves, and 
still more by the fact that everywhere there are still wide circles of the 
proletariat and greater ones of the non-proletarian workers and exploited 
masses, which still trust in the bourgeois democracy, the discussion of which 
is our most important duty. 

13. In particular, the situation of the Labor press in the more advanced 
capitalist countries shows with special force both the falsity of liberty and 
equality under the bourgeois democracy, and the necessity of a systematic 
blending of the lawful and unlawful work. Both in vanquished Germany 
and in victorious America all the powers of the governmental apparatus 
of the bourgeoisie, and all the tricks of its financial kings are being set 
in motion in order to deprive the workingmen of their press; prosecutions 
and arrests (or murber by means of hired murderers) of the editors, denial 
of mailing privilege, curtailing of paper supply, etc. Moreover, the informa- 
tion necessary for a daily paper is in the hands of bourgeois telegraph 
agencies, and the advertisements, without which a large paper cannot pay 
its way, are at the "free" disposal of capitalists. On the whole, by means 
of deception, the pressure of capital, and the bourgeois government, the 
bourgeoisie deprives the revolutionary proletariat of its press. 

For the struggle against this state of things the Communist parties must 
create a new type of periodical press for extensive circulation among the 
workmen : 

1) Lawful publications, in which the Communists without calling themselves 
such and without mentioning their connection with the party, learn to utilize 
the slightest liberty allowed by the laws, as the Bolsheviks did at the "time 
of the Tsar," after 1905. 

2) Illegal sheets, although of the smallest dimensions and irregularly pub- 
lished, but reproduced in most of the printing offices by the workingmen (in 
secret, or if the movement has grown stronger, by means of a revolutionary 
.seizure of the printing offices) giving the proletariat imdiluted revolutionary 
information and the revolutionary mottoes. 

Without a Communist press the preparation for the dictatorship of the 
proletariat is impossible. 


14. The degree of preparedness of the proletariat to carry out its dictator- 
ship, in the countries most important from the view-point of world economics 
and world politics, is manifested most objectively and precisely by the fact 
that the most influential parties of the Second International, the French 
Socialist Party, the Independent Social Democratic Party of Germany, the 
Independent Labor Party of England, the American Socialist Party, have 
gone out of this yellow International and have passed resolutions to join the 
Third International, the first three con-resolutions to join the Third Inter- 
national, all, however, making certain reservations. This proves that not only 
the advance guard but the majority of the proletariat has begun to pass 
over to our side, persuaded thereto by the whole course of events. The chief 
thing now is to know how to complete this passage and solidly, structurally 
strengthen it, so as to be able to advance along the whole line, without the 
slightest hesitation. 

1.5. The whole activity of the above-mentioned parties (to which must be added 
the Swiss Socialist Party if the telegraphic reports regarding its resolution to 
join the Third International are correct) proves — and any given periodical paper 
of tliese parties confirms it — that they are not Comtminist as yet, and frequently 
even are in direct opposition to the fundamental principles of the Third Interna- 
tional, namely: the rpoognition of the dictatorship of the proletariat, and of 
♦Soviet iiower instead of the bourgeois democracy. 

Therefore the Second Congress of the Communist International should announce 
that it does not consider it possible to receive these parties immediately ; that 
it confirms the answer of the Executive Committee of the Third International 
to the German Independents ; that it confirms its readiness to carry on negotia- 
tions with any party leaving the Second International and desiring to join the 


Third ; that it reserves the right of a consultative vote to the delegate of such 
parties at all its congresses and conferences, and that it proposes the following 
conditions for a complete union of these (and similar) parties with the Com- 
munist International. 

1.) The publishing of all the resolutions passed by all the congress of the 
party for the weeding out of all elements that Committee, in all the periodical 
publications of the party. 

2.) Their discussion at the special meetings of all sections and local organiza- 
tions of the party. 

3.) The convocation, after such a discussion, of a special congress of the party 
for the weeding out of all elements which continue to act in the spirit of the 
Second International. Such a congress is to be called together as soon as possible 
within a period of four months at most foliov/ing the Second Congress. 

4.) Expulsion from the party of all members who persist in their adlierence 
to the Second International. 

5.) The transfer of all periodical papers of tlie party into the hands of 
Communist editors. 

6.) The parties wishing to join the Third International but which have not 
yet radically changed their old tactics, must above all take care that two-thirds 
of their Central Conunittee and of their chief central institutions consist of such 
comrades as have declared their adherence to a party of the Third International 
before the Second Congress. Exceptions can be made only with the sanction 
of the Executive Committee of the Communist International. The E. C. also 
reserves the right of making exceptions with regard to the rejiresentatives of the 
"centrist" movement mentioned in paragraph 7. 

7.) Members of the party who repudiate the conditions and theses adopted by 
the Communist International must be excluded from the Party. The same ap- 
plies to delegates of special congresses. The Second Congress of the Third 
Intern, must charge its Executive Committee to adnu"t the above-named and 
similar parties into the Third International after a preliminary verification that 
all these conditions have been fulfilled, and that the nature of the activity of the 
party has become Conmiunist. 

16. In regard to the question as to what must be the line of conduct of the 
Communists at present constituting the minority at the responsible posts of the 
above-named and similar parties, the Second Congress of the Third International 
should establish, that, in view of the rapid progress of the actual revolutionarv 
spirit among the workingmeTi belonging to these parties it would be undesirable 
for the Communists to leave the parties, so long as they are able to carry on 
their work within the parties in the spirit of a lecognition of the dictatorship 
of the proletariat and of the criticism of all opportunists and centrists still 
remaining in these parties. 

When the left wing of the centre party becomes sufficiently strong, it can- 
provided it considers it beneficial for the development of Communism— leave the 
party in a body and inaugurate a Communist Party. 

At the same time the Second Congress of the Third International must declare 
itself in favor of the joining of Connnunist Party, and the groups and organiza- 
tions sympathizing with Communism in England, joining the Labor Party, not- 
withstanding the circumstance that this party is a member of the Second 
International. The reason of this is that so long as this party will allow all 
constituent organizations their present freedom of criticism and freedom of 
propaganda, and organizing activity in favor of the dictatorship of the proletariat 
and the power of Soviets, so long as this party preserves its principle of uniting 
all the industrial organizations of the working class, the Connnunists ought to 
take all measures and even consent to certain compromises, in order to be able 
to exercise an influence over the wider circles of workingmen and the masses, 
to denounce their opportunist leaders from a higher tribune, to accelerate the 
transfer of the political power from the direct representatives of the bourgeoise 
to the "Labor lieutenants of the capitalist class," so that the masses may be 
more rapidly cured of all illusions on this subject. 

17. In regard to the Italian Socialist Party, the Second Congress of the Third 
International considers as perfectly correct the criticism of tliis Party and the 
practical propositions which are stated, as propositions to the District Council 
of the Italian Socialist Party on behalf of the Turin section of this Party in 
the paper "New Order" (L'Ordine Nnovo) dated May 8th, 1920, and which 
completely corresponds with the fundamental principles of the Third Inter- 


Therefore the Second Congress of the Third International requests the Italian 
Socialist Party to convene an extraordinary congress of the party for the dis- 
cussion of these propositions and the resolutions of both congresses of the 
Commnnist International, especially with regard to the parliamentary fraction, 
lo the non-communist elements in the party, and concerning the tactics in the 
trade unions. 

18. The Second Congress of the Third International considers as not correct 
Ihe views regarding the relations of the Party to the class and to the masses, 
and the non-iiarricipation of the Communist Parties in the bourgeois parlia- 
ments and reactionary Labor unions, whicli have been emphatically repudiated 
in the special re,solutions of the present congress, and defended in full by the 
'Communist Labor P;>rty of Germany" and also partially by the "Comnnmist 
Parly of Switzerland," by the organ of the West European secretariat of the 
< 'ommunist International "CommunisniTis" in Amsterdam, and by several of our 
Dutch comrades: further by certain Communist organizations in England, as 
for instances "The Workers' Socialist Federation," also by the "I. W. W." in 
America, the '"Shop Steward Committees" in England, and so forth, 

Nevertlieless the Second Congress of the Third International considers pos- 
sible and desirable the iunnediate afriliation of such of these organizations as 
have not already d(me so ollicially, because, in the given case, especially as 
regards the I. W. W. of America and Australia, and the "Shop Steward Com- 
mittees of England, we have to deal with a genuinely proletarian mass move- 
ment, which practically adheres to the principles of the Communist Interna- 
tional. In such organizations any mistaken views on the question of partici- 
pation in the bourgeois parliaments, are to be explained not so much on the 
theory that they are members of the bourgeoisie advocating their own petty 
bourge<ns vievrs, as the views of the Anarchists frequently are, but on the 
theory of the political inexjierience of the proletarians, who are, nevertheless, 
completely revolutionary and in contact with the masses. 

The Second Congress of the Third International requests, therefore, all 
Communist organizations and groups in the Anglo-Saxon countries, even in 
case immediate union between the Third International and the "Industrial 
Workers of the World" and the "Shf)p Steward Committees" does not take place, 
to carry on a polic.v of the most friendly attitude toward these organizations, 
to eater into closer connection with them, to explain to them in a friendly way, 
from the point of view of all revolutions and the three Russian revolutions in 
the Twentieth Centttry especially, the fallac.v of their above-stated views, and 
not to desist from repeated attempts to become united with these organiza- 
tions so as to form one Communist Party. 

19. In connection with this the Congress draws the attention of all com- 
rades, especially in the Latin and AngloSaxon countries to the fact that 
among the Anarchists since the war all over the world a deep ideological 
schism is taking jjlace iipon the question of thei rattitude towards the dictator- 
ship of the proletariat and the power of Soviets. And it is just among the 
proletarian elements, which were frequently led into anarchism by their per- 
fectly justified hatred of the opportunism and reformism of the parties of 
the Second International, that there is to be noticed a perfectl.v correct ttnder- 
standing of these principles, especially among those who are more nearly 
acqtiainted with the experience of Russia, Finland. Hungary, Lettland, Poland, 
and Germany. 

The Congress considers it the duty of all comrades to sitpport by all measures 
all the masses of proletarian elements passing from Anarchism to the Third 
International. The Congress points out that the success of the work of the truly 
Communist Parties otight to be measured, among other tbing.s, by how far they 
have been able to attract to their party all the uneducated, not petty-botirgeois, 
but proletarian masses from Anarchism. 

Conditions or Admission to the Communist International 

The First Constituent Congress of the Communist International did not draw 
up precise conditions of admission to the Third International. 

At the moment of the convocation of the First Congress in the majority of 
countries only Communist currents and groups existed. 

The Second World Congress of the Communist International is convening under 
different conditions. At the present moment in most countries there are not only 
Communist tendencies and groups but Communist parties and organizations. 


The Commumst International more and more frequently receives applications 
from parties and groups but a short time ago belonging to the Second Inter- 
national, now desirous of poining the Third International, but not yet really 
communist. The Second International is completely broken. Seeing the com- 
plete helplessness of the Second International the intermediary faction and the 
groups of the "centre" are trying to lean on the ever strengthening Communist 
International hoping at the same time, however, to preserve a certain "autonomy" 
which should enable them to carry on their former opportunist or "centrist" 
policy. The Communist International has become the fashion. 

The desire of certain leading groups of the "centre" to join the Third Inter- 
national now is an indirect confirmation of the fact that the majority of conscious 
workers of the whole world is growing stronger every day. 

The Communist International is being threatened with the danger of dilution 
with the fluctuating and half-and-half groups which have as yet not abandoned 
the ideaology of the Second International. 

It must be mentioned that in some of the large parties (Italy, Norway, Jugo- 
slavia, etc.), the majority of which adhere to the point of view of, 
there is up to this moment a considerable reformist and social pacifist wing, 
which is only awaiting the moment to revive and to begin an active "sabotage" of 
the proletarian revolution, and thus assist the bourgeoisie and the Second 

No Communist should forget the lesson of the Hungarian Soviet Republic. 

The unity between the Hungarian Communists and the so-called Left Social 
Democrats cost the Hungarian Proletariat very dearly. 

In view of this the Second World Congress finds it necessary to establish 
most definite conditions for the joining of new parties, as well as to ix)int out to 
such parties as have already joined the Communist International the duties 
which are laid upon them. 

The Second Congress of the Commumst International rules that the condi- 
tions for joining the Communist International shall be as follows : 

1. The general propaganda and agitation shoxild bear a really Communist 
character, and should correspond to the programme and decisions of the Third 
International. The entire party press should be edited by reliable Communists 
who have proved their loyalty to the cause of the Proletarian revolution. The 
dictatorship of the proletariat should not be spoken of simply as a current hack- 
neyed formula, it should be advocated in such a way that its necessity should be 
apparent to every rank-and-file working man and woman, to each soldier and 
peasant, and should emanate from everyday facts systematically recorded !iy our 
press day by day. 

All periodicals and other publications, as well as all party publications and 
editions, are subject to the control of the presidium of the party, independently 
of whether the party is legal or illegal. The editors should in no way be given 
an opportunity to abuse their autonomy and carry on a policy not fully 
corresponding to the policy of the party. 

Wherever the followers of the Third International have access, and whatever 
means of propaganda are at their disposal, whether the columns of new.>:papers, 
popular meetings, labor imions or co-operatives, — it is indispensable for them 
not only to denounce the bourgeoisie, but also its assistants and agent.s — 
reformists of every color and shade. 

2. Every organization desiring to join the Communist International shall 
be bound systematically and regailarly to remove from all the responsible posts 
in the labor movement (Party organizations, editors, labor unions, parliamentary 
factions, co-operatives, municipalities, etc.), all reformists and followers of the 
"centre," and to have them replaced by Communists, even at the cost of replacing 
at the beginning "experienced" men by rank-and-file working men. 

3. The class struggle in almost every country of Europe and America is enter- 
ing the phase of civil war. Under such conditions the Communists can have no 
confidence in bourgeois laws. Tliey should create everywhere a parallel illegal 
apparatus, which at the decisive moment should do its duty by the party, and in 
every way possible assist the revolution. In every country where in consequence 
of martial law or of other exceptional laws, the Communists are unable to carry 
on their work lawfully, a combination of lawful and unlawful work is absolutely 

4. A persistent and systematic propaganda and agitation is necessary in the 
army, where Communist groups should be formed in every military organizarion. 
Wherever, owing to repressive legislation, agitation becomes impossible, it is neces- 
sary to carry on such agitation illegally. But refusal to carry on or participate 


in such work shoiikl be considered equal to treason to the revolutionary rause, 
and incompatible with affiliation with the Third International. 

5. A systematic and regular propaganda is necessary in the rural districts. 
The working class can gain no victory unless it possesses the sympathy and 
support of at least part of the rural workers and of the poor peasants, and 
unless other sections of the population are equally utilized. Communist work in 
the rui'al districts is acquiring a predominant importance during the present 
period. It shotdd be carried on through Communist workingmen of both city 
and country who have connections with the rural districts. To refuse to do this 
work, or to transfer such work to untrustworthy half reformists, is equal to 
renouncing the proletarian revolution. 

6. Every party desirous of affiliating with the Third International should re- 
nounce not only avowed social patriotism, but also the falsehood and the hypoc- 
risy of social pacifism ; it should systematically demonstrate to the workers that 
without a revolutionary overthrow of capitalism no international arbitration, no 
talk of disarmament, no democratic reorganization of the League of Nations 
will he capable of saving mankind from new Imperialist wars. 

7. Parties desirous of joining the Communist International must recognize 
the necessity of a complete and absolute rupture with reformism and the 
policy of the "centrists," and must advocate this rupture amongst the widest 
circles of the party membership, without which condition a consistent Ccrm- 
munist policy is impossible. The Communist International demands uncon- 
ditionally and peremptorily that such rupture be brought about with the least 
possible delay. The Communist International cannot reconcile itself to the 
fact that such avowed reformists as for instance Tiirati, Modigliani, Kautsky, 
Hillquit, Longuet, Macdonald and others should be entitled to consider them- 
selves members of the Third International. This would make the Third 
International resemble the Second International. 

8. In the Colonial question and that of the oppressed nationalities there is 
necessary an especially distinct and clear line of conduct of the parties of 
countries where the boui'geoisie possesses such colonies or oppresses other 
nationalities. Evei'y party desirous of belonging to the Third International 
should be bound to denounce without any reserve all the methods of "its own" 
imperialists in the colonies, supporting not only in words but practically a 
movement of liberation in the colonies. It should demand the expulsion of its 
o'wn Imperialists from such colonies, and cultivate among the workingmen 
of its own country a truly fraternal attitude towards the working population 
of the colonies and oppressed nationalities, and carry on a systematic agitation 
in its own army against every kind of oppression of the colonial population. 

9. Every party desirous of belonging to the Communist International should 
be bound to carry on systematic and per.sistent Communist work in the labor 
unions, co-operatives and other labor organizations of the masses. It is 
necessary to form Communist groups within the organizations, which by per- 
sistent and lasting work should win over labor unions to Communismi These 
groups shoiild constantly denounce the treachery of the social patriots and 
of the fluctuations of the "centre." These Communist groups should be com- 
pletely subordinated to the party in general. 

10. Any party belonging to the Communist International is bound to carry 
on a stubborn struggle against the Amsterdam "International" of the yellow 
labor unions. It should propagate insistently amongst the organized workers 
the necessity of a rupture with the yellow Amsterdam Internatioiial. It shoiild 
support by all means in its power the International Unification of Red Labor 
L^nions. adhering to the Communist International, which is now beginning. 

11. Parties desirous of joining the Third International shall be bound to 
inspect the persotinel of their parliamentary factions, to remove all unreliable 
elements therefrom, to control such factions, not only verbally but in reality, 
to subordinate them to the Central Committee of the party, and to demand 
from each proletarian Communist that he devote his entire activity to the 
interests of real revolutionary propaganda. 

12. All parties belonging to the Communist International should be formed 
on the basis of the principle of democratic centralization. At the present time 
of acute civil war the Communist Party will be able fully to do its duty only 
when it is organized in a sufficiently thorongh way when it possesses an iron 
discipline, and when its party centre enjoys the confidence of the members of 
the party, who are to endow this centre with complete power, authority and 
ample rights. 

13. The Communist parties of those countries where the Communist activity 
is legal, should make a clearance of their members from time to time, as well 


-as those of the party organizations, in order systematically to free the party 
from the petty bourgeois elements which penetrate into it. 

14. Each party desirous of affiliating with the Communist International 
should be obliged to render every possible assistance to the Soviet Republics 
in their struggle against all counter-revolutionary forces. The Communist 
parties should carry on a precise and definite propaganda to induce the workers 
to refuse to transport any kind of military equipment intended for fighting 
against the Soviet Republics, and should also by legal or illegal means carry on a 
prop;iganda amongst the troops sent against the workers' republics, etc. 

15. All those parties which up to the present moment have stood upon the 
old social and democratic programmes should, within the shortest time pos- 
sible, draw up a new Communist programme in conformity with the special 
•conditions of their country, and in accordance with the resolutions of the 
■Communist International. As a rule, the programme of each party belonging 
to the Communist International should be confirmed by the next congress of the 
Communist International or its Executive Committee. In the event of the 
failure of the programme of any party being confirmed by the Executive 
Committee of the Communist International, the said party shjill be entitled 
to appeal to the Congress of the Communist International. 

16. All the resolutions of the congresses of the Communist International, as 
well as the resolutions of the Executive Committee are binding for all parties 
joining the Communis!" International. The International, operating 
under the conditions of most acute civil warfare, should be centralized in a 
better manner than the Second International. At the same time, the Communist 
International and the Executive Committee are naturally bound in every form 
of their activity to consider the variety of conditions under which the different 
parties have to work and struggle, and generally binding resolutions should be 
passed only on such questions upon which such resolutions are possible. 

17. In connection with the above, all parties desiring to join the Com- 
munist International should alter their name. Each party desirous of joining 
the Communist International should bear the following name : Communist 
Party of such and such a country, section of the Third Connnunist International. 
The question of the renaming of a party is not only a formal one, but is a 
political question of great importance. The Comnumist International has de- 
clared a decisive war against the entire bourgeois world, and all the yellow 
Social Democratic parties. It is indispensable that every rank-and-file worker 
should be able clearly to distinguish between the Communist parties and the 

•old official "Social Democratic'' or "Socialist" parties, which have betrayed the 
cause of the working class. 

18. All the leading organs of the press of every party are bound to publish 
all the most important documents of the Executive Committee of the Communist 

19. All those parties which have joined the Communist International, as well 
as those which have expressed a desire to do so, are obliged in as short a space 
of time as possible, and in no case later than four months after the Second 
Congress of the Communist International, to convene an Extraordinary Congress 
in order to discuss these conditions. In addition to this, the Central Committees 
of these parties should take care to acquaint all the local organizations with the 
regulations of the Second Congress. 

20. All those parties which at the present time are willing to join the Third 
International, but have so far not changed their tactics in any radical manner, 
shotild, prior to their joining the Third International, take care that not less 
than two-thirds of their committee members and of all their central institutions 
should be composed of comrades whf) have made an open and definite declaration 
prior to the convening of the Second Congress, as to their desire that the party 
should affiliate with the Third International. Exclusions are permitted only with 
the confirmation of the Executive Committee of the Third International. The 
Executive Committee of the Communist International has the right to make 
an exception also for the representatives of the "centre" as mentioned in 
paragraph 7. 

21. Those members of the party wlio reject the conditions and the theses of 
the Third International, are liable to be excluded from the party. 

This applies principally to the delegates at the Special Congresses of the party. 

The Role of the Communist Party in the Proletarian Revolution 

The world proletariat is confronted witli decisive battles. We are living in an 
epoch of civil war. The critical hour has struck. I)i almost all countries where 


there is a labor movement of any importance the working class, arms in hand, 
stands in the midst of tierce and decisive battles. Now more than ever is the work- 
ing class in need of a strong organization. Without losing an hour of invaluable 
time, the working class must keep on indefatigably preparing for the impending 
decisive struggle. 

The first hetoic uprising of the French proletariat during the Paris Commune 
of 1871 would have been much more successful, and many errors and shortcomings 
would have been avoided, had there been a strong Communist party, no matter 
how small. The struggle which the proletariat is now facing, under changed his- 
torical cii'cumstances, will be of nuich more vital importance to the future destiny 
of the working class than was the insmreciion of 1871. 

The Second World Congress of the Connnunist International therefore calls upon 
the revolutionary workers of the whole world to concentrate all their attention on 
the following: 

1. The ('ommunist Party is part of the working class, namely, its most ad- 
vanced, intelligent, and therefore most revolutionary part. The Communist Party 
is formed of the best, most intelligent, self-sacrificiug and far-seeing workers. 
The Communist Party has no other interests than those of the working class. It 
differs from the general mass of the workers iu that it takes a general view of 
the whole historical march of the working class, and at all turns of the road it 
endeavors to defend the interests, not of separate groups or professions, but of 
the working class as a whole. The Communist Party is the organized political 
lever by means of which the more advanced part of the working class leads all 
the proletarian and semi-proletarian mass. 

2. Until the time when the power of g(A-ernment will have been finally conquered 
by the proletariat, until the time when the proletarian rule will have been firmly 
established beyond the possibility of a bourgeois restoration, the Communist Party 
will have in its organized ranks oidy a minority of the workers. Up to the time 
when the power will have been seized by it, and during the transition period, the 
Conmiunist Party may. under favorable conditions, exercise undisputed moral and 
political influence on all the proletarian and semi-proletarian classes of the popula- 
tion ; but it will not be able to unite them within its ranks. Only when the dicta- 
torship of the workers has deprived the bourgeoisie of such powerful weapons 
as the press, the school, parliament, the church, the government apparatus, etc.; 
only when the final overthrow of the capitalist order will have become an evident 
fact — only then will all or almost all the workers enter the ranks of the Communist 

3. A sharp distinction must be made between the conception of "party" and 
"class". The members of the "Christian" and liberal trade luiions of Germany, 
England, and other coinitries, are undoubtedly parts of the working class. More 
or less considerable circles of the working people, followers of Scheidemann, 
Gompers and Co., are likewise part of the working class. Under certain historical 
conditions the working class is very likely to be impregnated with numerous reac- 
tionary elements. The task of Communism is not to adapt itself to such retrograde 
elements of the working class, but to raise the whole working class to the level of 
the Communist vanguard. The confoiuiding of these two conceptions — of party 
and of class — can only lead to the greatest errors and confusion. Thus, for in- 
stance, it is clear that notwithstanding the disposition or pre.iudices of certain 
parts of the working masses during the imperialist war, the workers' parties ought 
to have counteracted these prejudices, defending the historical interests of the 
proletariat, which demanded of the proletarian parties a declaration of war 
against war. 

Thus in the beginning of the imperialistic war of 1914, the social-traitor parties 
of all countries, in upholding the capitalists of their "own" countries, unanimously 
declared that such was the will of the people. They forgot at the same time that 
even if this were so, the duty of the workers' party would have been to combat 
.such an attitude of the majority of the workers, and to defend the interests of the 
workers at whatever cost. At the very beginning of the twentieth century the 
Russian Mensheviks (minimalists) of the time (the so-called "economists"), denied 
the possibility of an open political struggle against Tsarism, on the ground that 
the working class in general was not yet ripe for the understanding of the political 
struggle. So also has the right wing of the Independents of Germany, in all its 
compromising, referred to the "will of the masses," failing to understand that the 
party exists precisely for the purpose of marching ahead of the masses and point- 
ing out the way. 

4. The Communist International is firmly convinced that the collapse of the 
old "Social Democratic" parties of the Second International cannot be rep- 


resented as the collapse of the proletariau party organizations in general. The 
period of open struggle for the dictatorship of the workers has created a new 
proletarian party, the Communist Party. 

5. The Communist International emphatically rejects the opinion that the 
workers could carry out a revolution without having an independent political 
party of their own. Every class struggle is a political struggle. The object of 
this struggle, which inevitably turns into a civil war, is the obtaining of politi- 
cal power. However, this power cannot be acquired, organized and directed 
otherwise than by means of a political party. Only in case the workers have 
for their leader an organized and experienced party, with strictly defined 
objects, and a practically drawn up program of immediate action, both in 
internal and foreign policy — then only will the acquisition of political power 
cease to be a causal episode, but will serve as a starting point. 

This class struggle likewise demands that the general guidance of the vari- 
ous forms of the proletarian movement (labor unions, co-operative associations, 
cultural-educational work, elections, etc. ) be united in one central organiza- 
tion. Only a political party can be such a unifying and guiding centre. To 
refuse to create and strengthen such a party and submit to its dictates, would 
mean to abandon the idea of unity in the guidance of the separate proletariau 
groups operating in the different arenas of the struggle. Lastly, the class 
struggle of the proletariat demands a concentrated propaganda, throwing light 
on the various stages of the fight, a unified point of view, directing the atten- 
tion of the proletariat at each given moment to the definite tasks to be accom- 
plished by the whole class. This cannot be done without the help of a cen- 
tralized political apparatus, i. e., a political party. Therefore the propaganda 
of the revolutionary Syndicalists, and the partisans of the Industrial Workers 
of the World (I. W. W.), against the necessity of an Independent Workers" 
Party, as a matter of fact has only served and continues to serve the interests 
of the bourgeoisie and the counter-revolutionary "Social Democrats." In their 
propaganda against the Comnuuiist Party, which the Syndicalists and Indus- 
tiralists desire to replace by the labor unions, they approach the opportunists. 
After the defeat of the revolution in 1905, during the course of several years 
the Russian Mensheviks proclaimed the necessity of a so-called Labor Congress, 
which was to replace the revolutionary party of the working class ; all kinds of 
"Laborites" of England and America, while consicously carrying on a bour- 
geois policy, are propagating among the workers the idea of creating indefinite 
shapeless workers' unions instead of a political party. The revolutionary Syn- 
dicalists and Industrialists desire to fight against the dictatorship of the 
bourgeoisie, but they do not know how to do it. They do not see that a working 
class without an independent political party is like a body without a head. 

Revolutionary Syndicalism and Industrialism are a step forward only iu 
comparison with the old. mttsty, counter-revolutionary ideology of the Second 
International. But in comparison with the revolutionary Marxian doctrine, 
i. e., with Communism, Syndicalism and indtistrialism are a step backward. 
The declaration made by the "Lefts" of the Communist Labor Party of Ger- 
many (in the programme-declaration of their Constituent Congress in April) 
to the effect that they are forming a party, but not one in the traditional sense 
of the word (''Kein Partei im iiberlieferten Sinne") — is a capitulation before 
the views of Syndicalism and Industrialism which are reactionary. The work- 
ing class cannot achieve the victory over the bourgeoisie by means of the gen- 
eral strike alone, and by the policy of folded arms. The proletariat nn;st re- 
sort to an armed uprising. Having understood this, one realizes that an or- 
ganized political party is absolutely essential, and that shapeless labor organi- 
zations will not suffice. ^ 

The revolutionary Syndicalists frequently advance the idea of the great ini;^ 
portance of a determined revolutionary minority. The Communist Party is 
just such a determined minority of the working class, which is ready to act, 
which has a program and strives to organize the masses for the struggle. 

6. The most important task of a genuine Communist Party is to preserve con- 
stantly the closest contact with the widest masses of the workers. For that the Communists must carry on activity also within such orgainzations 
as are non-partisan, but which comprise large proletarian groups, for exam- 
ple organizations of war invalids in various countries, the "Hands-off Russia" 
Committee in England, Proletarian Tenants' Unions, and so forth. Of special 
importance are the so-called non-party conferences of workers and peasants 
held in Russia. Such conferences are being organized almost in every town, 
in all industrial districts and in the country. In the elections to these con- 


ferences the widest masses even of the most backward workers take part. 
The order of business at these conferences is made up of the most pressing 
questions, such as the food question, the housing problem, the military situa- 
tion, the school question. The Communists exercise their influence on these 
non-party conferences in the most energetic manner, and with the greatest 
success for the party. They consider it their most important task to carry 
on the work of organization and instruction within such organizations. But 
in order that their efforts should bring forth the desired results, and that such 
organizations should not become the prey of opponents of the revolutionary 
proletariat, the most advanced Communist workers should always have their 
own independent, closely united Connnunist Party, working in an organized 
manner, and standing up for the general interests of Communism at each turn 
of events, and under every form of the movement. 

7. The Communists have no fear of the largest workers' organizations which 
belong to no party, even when they are of a decidedly reactionary nature 
(yellow unions, Christian Associations, etc.). The Communist Party carries 
oil its work inside such organizations, and untiringly instructs the workers, 
and proves to them that the idea of no political party as a principle is con- 
sciously cultivated among the workers by the bourgeoisie and its adherents, 
with the object of keeping the proletariat from an organized struggle for 

8. The old classical division of the labor movement into three forms (party, 
hibor unions and co-operatives) has evidently served its time. Th9 proletarian 
revolution in Russia has brought forward the fundamental form of the workers' 
dictatorship, the Soviets. The new divisions, which are now everywhere form- 
ing, are: Party, Soviet, Industrial Union. But the party of the proletariat, 
that is to say, the Communist Party, must constantly and systematically direct 
the work of the Soviets as well as of the revolutionized industrial unions. 
The Communist Party, the organized vanguard of the working class, must 
direct the struggle of the entire class on the economic and the political fields, 
and also on the tield of edvication. It must be the animating spirit in the indus- 
trial unions, labor councils and all other forms of proletarian organizations. 

The existence of the Soviets as an historically basic form of the dictatorship 
of the proletariat, in no way lessens the guiding role of the Communist Party 
in the proletarian revolution. The assertions made by the "Left" Communists 
of Germany (in their appeal to the German proletariat of April 14th, 1920, 
signed "The Communist Labor Party of Germany") that the party must always 
adapt itself to the idea of the Soviets and assume a proletarian character, is 
nothing but a hazy expression of the opinion that the Communist Party should 
dissolve itself into the Soviets, that the Soviets can replace the Commimist 
Party. This idea is essentially reactionary. 

There was a period in the history of the Russian Revolution when the Soviets 
were acting in opposition to the party, and sitpported the policy of the agents 
of the bourgeoisie. The same has happened in Germany, and may take place 
in other countries. 

In order that the Soviets may be able to perform their historic mission, a 
party of staunch Communists is necessary who should not merely adapt 
themselves to the Soviets, but, on the contrary, should take care that the 
Soviets do not adapt themselves to the boiu-geoisie, and to the white guard 
Social Democracy. The Soviets, with the aid of the Communist factions in 
them, should be brought under the banner of the Communist Party. 

Those who propose to the Communist Party to "conform" to the Soviets, 
those who perceive in such "conformation" a strengthening of the "proletarian 
nature" of the party, are rendering a bad service both to the Party and to 
the Soviets, and do not understand the importance of the Party, nor that of the 
Soviets. The stronger the Communist Party in each country, the sooner will 
the Soviet idea triumph. INIany "Independent" and even "Right" Socialists 
profess to believe in the Soviet idea. But we cannot prevent such elements from 
distorting this idea, unless there exists a strong Communist Party, capable of 
determining the policy of the Soviets and of making them follow it. 

9. The Communist Party is necessary to the working class not only before 
it has acquired power, not only while it is acquiring such power, but also 
after the power has passed into the hands of the working class. The history 
of the Russian Communist Party, for three years at the head of such a vast 
country, shows that the role of the party after the acquisition of i>ower by 
the working class has not only not diminished, but, on the contrary, has 
greatly increa.sed. 


10. On the morrow of the acquisition of power by the proletariat, its party 
still remained, as formerly, a part of the working class. But it was just that 
part of the class which organized the victory. During twenty years in Russia — 
and for a number of years in Germany — the Communist Party, in its struggle 
not only against the bourgeoisie, but also against those Socialists who diffuse 
bourgeois ideas among the proletariat, has enrolled in its ranks the staunchest, 
the most far-seeing and most advanced fighters of the working class. Only by 
having such a closely united organization of the best part of the working class 
is it possible for the Party to overcome all the difficulties that arise before the 
proletarian dictatorships in the days following tlie victory. In the organization 
of a new proletarian Red Army, in the practical abolition of the bourgeois govern- 
ing apparatus, and the building in its place of tlie framework of a new prole- 
tarian state apparatus, in the struggle against the narrow craft tendencies of 
certain separate groups of workers, in the struggle against local and provincial 
"patriotism," clearing the way for the creation of new labor discipline — ^^iu all 
these undertakings the final decisive word is to be said by the Communist Party, 
whose members by tlieir own example animate, guide the majority of the workers. 

11. The necessity of a political party for the proletariat can cease only with 
the complete abolition of classes. On the way to this final victory of Comnnmism 
it is possible that the relative importance of the three fundamental proletarian 
organizations of modern times (Party, Soviets, and Industrial Unions), shall 
undergo some changes, and that gradually a single type of workers' organization 
will be formed. The Communist Party, however, will become absorbed in the 
working class only when Communism ceases to be the object of struggle, and the 
whole working class shall have become Communist. 

12. The Second Congress of the Communist International must serve not only 
to establish the historical mission of the Communist Party in general, but it 
must indicate to the international proletariat, in rough draft, what kind of 
Communist Party is needed. 

13. The Communist International assumes that especially during the period 
of the dictatorship of the proletariat, the Communist Party should be organized 
on the basis of strict proletarian centralism. In order to lead the working 
class successfully during the long, stubborn civil war, the Communist Party 
must establish the strictest military discipline within its own ranks. The expe- 
rience of the Russian Communist Party in its successful leadership of the civil 
war of the working class during three years, h'as proved that the victory of 
the workers is impossible without a severe discipline, a perfected centralization, 
and the fullest confidence of all the organizations of the party in the leading 
organ of the party. 

14. The Communist Party should be based on the principle of democratic 
centralization. The chief principle of the latter is the election of the tipper 
party units by those immediately below, the unconditional subordination of 
subordinate units to the decisions of those above them, and a strong party 
central organ, whose decrees are binding upon all the leaders of party life 
between party conventions. 

15. In view of the state of siege introduced by the bourgeoisie ag^xinst the 
Communists, a whole series of Communist parties in Europe and America, are 
comiielled to exist illegally. It must be remembered that imder such condi- 
tions it may become necessary sometimes temporarily to deviate from the strict 
observance of the elective principle, and to delegate to the leading party organi- 
zations the right of co-election, as was done in Rtissia at one time. Under the 
state of siege the Communist Party cannot have recourse to a democratic refer- 
endum among all the members of the party (as was proposed by part of the 
American Communists), but on the contrary, it should empower its leading 
central organ to make important decisions in emergencies on beh'alf of all the 
members of the party. 

16. The doctrine of a vride "autonomy" for the separate local organizations 
of the party at the present moment only weakens the Communist Party, under- 
mines its working capacity, and aids the development of petty bourgeois, 
anarchistic, centrifugal tendencies. 

17. In countries where the power is in the hands of the bourgeoisie or the 
counter-revolutionary Social Democrats, the Communist Party must learn to 
unite systematically legal with Illegal work ; but all legal work must be carried 
on under the practical control of the illegal Party. The parliamentary groups 
of Communists, both in the central as well as in the local government institu- 
tions, must be fully and absolutely subject to the Communist Party in general, 
irrespective of whether the Party on the whole be a legal or an illegal organiza- 


tlou at the moment. Ad.v delegate who in one way or another does not submit 
absolutely to the Party shall be expelled from the ranks of Communism. 

The legal press (newspapers, publications) must be unconditionally and fully 
subject to the party in general, and to its Central Committee. No concessions 
are admissible in this respect. 

18. The fundamental principle of all organization work of the Communist 
Party and individual Communists nuist be the creation of Communist nuclei 
everywhere where they find proletarians and semi-proletarians — although even 
in small numbers. In" every Soviet of Workers' Deputies, in every government 
institution, everywhere, even though there may be only three people sympathizing 
with Comnuuiisiu, a Communist nucleus must be inunediately organized. It is 
only the power of organization of the Communists that enables the advance guard 
of the working class to be the leader of the whole class. Communist nuclei, 
working in organizations adhering to no political party, must be subject to the 
party organizations in general, whether the Party itself is working legally or 
illegally at the given moment. Conunnnist nuclei of all kinds nuist be subordin- 
ated one to another in a strictly hierarchical order and system. 

19. The Communist Party almost always begins its work among the industrial 
workers residing for the niost part in cities. For the rapid victory of the work- 
ing class it is necessary that the Party should also work in the country, in the 
villages. The Communist Party must carry on its propaganda and organization 
work among the agricultural laborers and the poorer farmers. It must especially 
endeavor to organize Communist nuclei in tlie rural districts. 

The international organization of the proletariat will be strong only if in all the 
countries where the Communists are living and working the above principles of 
party organization and activity are firmly established. The Communist Interna- 
tional invites to its Congress all labor unions which recognize the principles of 
the Third International, and are ready to break with the yellow International. 
The Conmiunist International intends to organize an international section com- 
posed of the red labor unions, which recognize the principles of Comnuinism. 
The Communist International will not refuse to co-operate with purely non- 
political workers' organizations desirous of carrying on a serious revolutionary 
struggle against the boiirgeoisie. But at the same time the Communist Interna- 
tional will never cease to emphasize to the workers of all the world : 

1. The Communist International is the chief and essential instrument for the 
liberation of the working class. In each country there must now be not only 
Communist groups, or tendencies, — but a Communist Party. 

2. In evei-y country there must be only one Commimist Party. 

3. The Conunnnist Party must be founded on the principle of the strictest 
centralization, and during the period of civil war it must introduce military 
discipline in its ranks. 

4. In every place where there are a dozen proletarians or semi-proletarians, 
the Communist Party must have an organized nucleus. 

5. In each non-political organization there must be a Communist nucleus, 
strictly subordinate to the Party in general. 

6. While firmly and faithfully supporting the programme and revolutionary 
tactics of Communism, the Communist Party must always be closely united with 
the most widely spread workers' organizations, and avoid sectarianism as much 
as lack of principle. 

The Communist Party and Parliamentarism 

i. the new epoch and the new parliamentarism 

The attitude of the Socialist Parties towards parliamentarism was originally, 
at the time of the International, one of utilizing the bourgeois parliament 
for purposes of agitation. Participation in parliamentary activity was looked 
upon from the point of view of developing class consciousness, i. e., of awaken- 
ing in the proletariat class hostility toward the ruling class. Changes in this 
attitude were brought about not through change of doctrine, but under the in- 
fluence of political development. Owing to the uninterrupted advance of the 
forces of production and the widening sphere of capitalist exploitation, capi- 
talism, and together with it the parliamentary state, acquired a lasting stability. 

This gave rise to the adaptibility of the parliamentary tactics of the Socialist 

parties to "organic" legislative activity in the bourgeois parliament, and the 

ever growing significance of the struggle for reforms within the capitalist 

system as well as the predominating influence of the so-called "immediate de- 

94931— 40— app., pt. 1—10 


niand" and the conversion of the maximum programme into a figure of speech 
as an altogether remote "final goal." This served as a basis for the develop- 
ment of parliamentary careerism, corruption, and open or hidden betrayal of 
the fundamental interests of the working class. 

The attitude of the Third International towards parliamentarism is deter- 
mined not by a new doctrine, but by the changed goal of i>arliamentarism 
itself. During the previous epoch parliament performed a certain i)rogressive 
function as the weapon of developing capitalism, but under the present condi- 
tions of unbridled Imperialism, parliament has become a tool of falsehood, 
deceit, violence, and enervating gossip. In the ruin, parliamentary reforms, 
devoid of system, of constancy, and of definite plan, have lost every practical 
significance for the working masses. 

Parliament has lost its stability like the whole of bourgeois society. The 
sudden transition from the organic to the critical epoch has created the founda- 
tion for new proletarian tactics in the field of parliamentarism. The Russian 
Workers' Party (Bolsheviks) had already worked out the essence of revolu- 
tionary parliamentarism in the preceding period, owing to the fact that Russia, 
since 1905, had lost its political and social equilibrium and had entered upon 
Ihe period of storm and stress. 

To the extent that some Socialists with an inclination for Communism iwinr 
out that the moment of revolution in their respective countries has not yet 
arrived, and so decline to break away from the parliamentary opportunists, 
they are reasoning consciously or unconsciously from the assumption that the 
present epoch is one of relative stability for imperialist society, and they are 
assuming, therefore, that i)ractical results may be achieved in the struggle for 
reform by coalition with such men as Turati and Longuet. As soon as Com- 
munism comes to light, it must begin to elucidate the character of the present 
epoch (the culminations of capitalism, imperialistic self-negation and self- 
destruction, uninterrupted growth of civil war, etc.). Political relationships 
and political groupings may be different in different countries, but the essence 
of the matter is everywhere the same: we must start with the direct prepara- 
tion for a proletarian uprising, politically and technically, for the destruction 
of the bourgeoisie and for the creation of the new proletarian state. 

Parliament at present can in no way serve as the arena of a struggle for 
reform, for improving the lot of the working people, as it has at certain periods 
of the preceding epoch. The centre of gravity of political life at present has 
been completely and finally transferred beyond the limits of parliament. On 
the other hand, owing not only to its relationship to the working masses, but 
also to the complicated mutual relations within the various groups of the 
bourgeois itself, the bourgeoisie, is forced to have some of its policies in one 
way or another passed through parliament, where the various cliques haggle for 
power, exhibit their strong sides and betray their weak ones, get themselves 
unmasked, etc., etc. Therefore it is the immediate historical task of the work- 
ing class to tear this apparatus out of the hands of the ruling classes, to break 
and destroy it, and to create in its place a new proletarian apparatus. At the 
same time, however, the revolutionary general staff of the working class is 
vitally concerned in having its scouting parties in the parliamentary institu- 
tions of the bourgeoisie, in order to facilitate this task of destruction. 

Thus the fundamental difference between the tactics of Communists entering 
parliament with revolutionary aims in view, and the tactics of the socialist 
parliamentarians, becomes perfectly clear. The latter act on the assumption 
of the relative stability and the indefinite durability of the existing order, they 
consider it their task to achieve reforms by all means and are concerned to 
make the mass(>s appreciative of every accompiishinent as the merit of Social 
Democratic parliamentarism (Turati, Longuet & Co.). 

Instead of the old compromising parliamentarism a new parliamentarism 
has come to life, as a weapon for the destruction of parliamentarism as a 
whole. Hut the aversion towards tlie traditional practices of the old parlia- 
mentarism drives some revolutionary elements into the camp of the opponents 
of parliamentarism on principle (I. W. W., the revolutionary Syndicalists, 
German Communist Labor Party). 

Taking all this into consideration, tlie Second adopts the following 
theses : 


1. Parliamentarism as a State system, has become a "democratic" form of 
the rule of liie bourgeoisie which, at a certain stage of its development, needs 



ilif liotion of national representation, wliicli outwardly would be an organiza- 
rion of a "national will" standing outside of classes, but in reality is an 
instrument of oppi'ession and suppression in the hands of the ruling capitalists. 

2. Parliamentarism is a definite form of State order. Therefore it can in 
no way be a form of Comnuuiist society, which recognizes neither classes, nor 
class struggle, nor any form of State authority. 

3. Parliamentarism cannot be a form of proletarian government during the 
transition period between the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie and that of the 
proietariat. At the moment when the accentuated class struggle turns into 
civil war, the proletariat must inevitably form its State organization as a 
fighting organization, whicii cannot contain any of the representatives of the 
former ruling classes: all fictions of a "national will" are liarniful to the 
proletariat at that time, and a parliamentary division of authority is needless 
and injurious to it; the only form of proletarian dictatorship is a Republic 
of Soviets. 

4. The bourgeois parliaments, which constitute one of the most important 
instruments of the State machinery of the bourgeoisie, cannot be won over 
by the proletariat any more than can the bourgeois order in general. The 
task of the proletariat consists in blowing up the whole machinery of tiie 
bourgeoisie, in destroying it. and all the parliamentary institutions with it, 
whether they l)e republican or constitutional-monarchical. 

5. Thf same relates to the local government institutions of the bourgeoisie, 
which theoretically it is not correct to differentiate from State organizations. 
In reality they are part of the same apparatus of the State machinery of the 
bourgeoisie which must be destroyed by the revolutionary proletariat and 
replaced by local Soviets of Workers' Deputies. 

6. <'onse(iuently, Communism repudiates parliamentarism as the form of the 
future; it renounces the same as a form of the class dictatorship of the prole- 
tariat: it repudiates the possibility of winning over the parliaments ;. its aim 
is to destroy parliamentarism. Therefore it is only possible to speak of 
utilizing the bourgeois State organizations with the object of destroying them. 
The question can be discussed only and exclusively on such a plane. 

7. All class struggle is a political struggle, because it is finally a straggle for 
power. Any strike, when it spreads through the whole country, is a menace 
to tlie bourgeois State, and thus acquires a political character. To strive to 
overthrow the bourgeoisie, and to destroy its State, means to carry on political 
warfare. To create one's own class apparatus — for the bridling and suppres- 
sion of the resisting bourgeoisie, whatever such an apparatus may be — means 
to gain political power. 

8. Consequently, the question of a political struggle does not end in the 
question of one's attitude towards the parliamentary system. It is a general 
condition of the class struggle of the proletariat, insofar as the struggle grows 
from a .small and personal one to a general struggle for the overthrow of the 
capitalist order as a whole. 

9. The elementary means of the struggle of the proletariat against the rule of 
the bourgeoisie is, first of all, the method of mass demonstrations. Such mass 
demonstrations are prepared and carried out by the organized masses of the 
prol^'tariat, under the direction of a united, disciplined, centralized Conununist 
Party. Civil war is war. In this war the proletariat must have its eflicient 
political officers, its good political general staff, to coudtict operations dtu'ing 
all tlie stages of that fight. 

Ki. The mass struggle means a whole system of developing demonstrations 
growing ever more actite in form, and logically leading to an uprising against 
the capitalist order of government. In this warfare of the masses developing 
into ;i civil war, the guiding party of the proletariat must, as a general rule, 
secure every and all lawftil positions, making them its auxiliaries in the revolu- 
tioiiaiy work, and stibordinating sitch positions to the plans of the general 
campaign, that of the mass struggle. 

11. One such auxiliary suiiport is the rostnun of the bourgeois parliament. 
Against participation in a political campaign one should not use the argument 
that parliament is a bourgeois government institution. The Communist Party 
enters such institutions not for the purpose of organization work, imt in order to 
blow up the whole bourgeois machinery and the parliament itself from within (for 
instance, the work of Liebknecht in Germany, of the Bolsheviks in the Imi)erial 
Duma, in the "Democratic Conference," in the "Parliament" of Kereusky. and 
lastly, in the "Constituent Assembly." and akso in the Municipal Dumas, an<l 
the activities of the Bulgarian Co;nnuinists. ) 


12. This work within the parliaments, which consists chiefly in malcing revolu- 
tionary propaganda from the parliamentary platform, the denouncing of enemies, 
the ideological unification of the masses, who are still looking up to the parlia- 
mentary platform, captivated by democratic illusions, especially in backward 
territories, etc., must be fully subordinated to the objects and tasks of the mass 
struggle outside the parliaments. 

The participation in the elective campaign and the revolutionary propaganda 
from the parliamentary tribune has a special importance for the winning over of 
those elements of the workers, who — as perhaps the agrarian working masses — 
have stood far away from the revolutionarj' movement and political life. 

13. If the Communists have the majority in the local government institutions, 
they must: a) carry on a revolutionary opposition against the bourgeois central 
authority; b) do all for the aid of the poor population (economic measures, 
establishment ot attempt to establish an armed workers' militia : c) point out on 
every occasion the barriers which the bourgeois State power i)urs against really 
great changes; d) develop on this basis the sharpest revolutionary propaganda 
without fearing a conflict with the State authorities; e) under certain conditions 
substitute local Workers' Councils for the municipal administration. The whole 
activity of the Communists in the communal administration therefore must be 
a part of the general work of destruction of the capitalistic system. 

14. The elective campaign must be carried on not in the sense of obtaining a 
maximum of votes, but in that of a revolutionary mobilization of the masses 
around the mottoes of the proletarian revolution. The election campaign must 
be conducted by the entire mass of party members, not by the leaders alone ; it is 
necessary to make use of and be in complete touch witli all the manifestations 
of the masses (strikes, demonstrations, movements among the soldiers and sailors, 
etc.) going on at the moment; it is necessary to summon all the masses of the 
proletarian organizations to active work. 

15. In complying with all these conditions, as well as with those indicated in 
a special instruction, the parliamentary work must present a direct contrast to 
the dirty ''politics" which has been practised by the Social Democratic parties 
of all countries, that enter parliament with tlie object of supporting that "demo- 
cratic" in.stitution or. at best, to "win it over." The Comnumist Party can only 
recommend a revolutionary use of the parliament as exemplified by Karl Lieb- 
knecht, Haeglund and the Bolsheviks. 

16. "Anti-parliamentarism," in principle, in the sense of an absolute and 
categorical repudiation of participation in the elections and the parliamentary 
revolutionary work, cannot, therefore, bear criticism, and is a naive, childish 
doctrine, which is founded sometimes on a healthy disgust of politicians, but 
which does not understand the possibilities of revolutionary parliamentarism. 
Besides, very often this doctrine is connected with a quite erroneous idea of the 
role of the party, which in this case is considered not as a fighting, centralized, 
advance guard of the workers, but as a decentralized system of badly joined 
revolutionary nuclei. 

17. On the other hand, an acknowledgement of the value of parliamentary 
work in no wise leads to an absolute, in-all-and-any-case acknowledgement of 
the necessity of concrete elections and a concrete participation in parliamentary 
sessions. The matter depends upon a series of specific conditions. Under 
certain circumstances it may become necessary to leave the parliament. The 
Bolsheviks did so when they left the pre-parliament in order to break it up, 
to weaken it, and to set up against it the Petrograd Soviet, which was then 
prepared to head the uprising; they acted in the same way in the Constituent 
Assembly on the day of its dissolution, converting the Third Congress of Soviets 
into the centre of political events. In other circumstances a lioycotting of the 
elections may be necessary, and a direct, violent storming of both the great 
bourgeois State apparatus and the parliamentary bourgeois clique, or a parti- 
cipation in the elections with a boycott of the parliament itself, etc. 

18. In this way, while recognizing as a general rule the necessity of parti- 
cipating in the election to the central parliament, and the institutions of local 
self-goverment, as well as in the woi'k in such institutions, the Communist 
Party must decide the question concretely, according to the specific conditions of 
the given amount. Boycotting the elections or the parliament, or leaving the 
parliament, is permissible, chiefly when there is a possibility of an immediate 
transition to an armed fight for power. 

19. At the same time one must constantly bear in mind the relative unimpor- 
tance of this question. If the center of gravity lies in the struggle for the power 
outside the parliament, then naturally the qtiestion of a proletarian dictatorship 


and a mass fight for it is immeasurably greater tliau tlio seeoiidary one of using 
the parliament. 

20. Therefore the Communist International insists categorically that it con- 
siders any division or attempt at a division within the Communist Parties 
along this line a crime against the labor movement. The Congress calls upon 
all the elements which are in favor of the mass struggle for the proletarian 
dictatorship, and of being under the direction of a centralized party of the 
revolutionary proletariat for gaining influence over all the mass organizations 
of the working class, to strive for a complete unity Ijetween the Communist 
elements, notwithstanding any iwssible disagreement on the question of utilizing 
the bourgeois parliaments. 


For securing the real execution of revolutionary parliamentary tactics it is 
necessary that : 

1. The Conuuunist Party in general and its Central Committee should, during 
the preparatory stage, before the parliamentary elections, inspect very carefully 
the quality of the personnel of the parliamentary factions. The Central Com- 
mittee should be responsible for the parliamentary Communist faction. The 
Central Committee shall have the undeniable right to reject any candidate of any 
organizations, if it is not perfectly convinced that such candidate will carry on a 
real Communist policy while in parliament. 

The Communist parties must desist from the old Social Democratic habit 
of electing as delegates only the so-called "experienced" parliamentarians, chiefly 
lawyers and so on. As a rule workmen should be put forward as candidates, 
without troubling al)out the fact that these may be sometimes simple rank-and- 
file workmen. The Communist Party must treat with merciless contempt all 
elements who try to make a career by joining the party just before elections 
in order to get into parliament. The Central Committees of Communist parties 
must sanction the candidacy of only such men as by long years of work have 
proved their unwavering loyalty to the working class. 

2. When the elections are over, the organization of the parliamentary factions 
must be wholly in the liands of the Central Committee of the Conununist Party — 
whether the party in general is a lawful or unlawful one at the given moment. 
The chairman and the bureau of the parliamentary faction of Communists must 
he confirmed in their functions by the Central Committee of the Party. The 
Central Committee of the Party must have its permanent representative in the 
parliamentary faction with the right of veto. On all important political ques- 
tions the parliamentary faction shall get preliminary instructions from the 
Central Committee of the Party. 

At each forthcoming important debate of the Communists in the parliament, 
the Central Committee sliall bo entitled and I)ound to appoint or reject the 
orator of the faction, to demand that he submit previously the theses of his 
speech, or the text, for confirmation by the Central Committee, etc. Each candi- 
date entered in the list of the Connnunists must sign a paper to the effect that 
at the first request of the Central Committee of the Party he shall be bound 
to give up his mandate, in order that in a given situation the act of leaving the 
parliament may be executed in luiison. 

3. In countries where reformist, semi-reformist or simply career-seeking ele- 
ments have managed to penetrate into the parliamentary faction of the Com- 
munists (as has already happened in several places), the Central Committees 
of the Communist Parties are bound radically to weed out the personnel of the 
factions, on the principle that it is better for the cause of the working class 
to have a small but truly Communist faction than a large one without a regular 
Communist line of conditct. 

4. A Communist delegate, by decision of the Central Committee, is bound 
to combine lawful work with unlawful work. In countries where the Communist 
delegate enjoys a certain inviolability, this must be utilized by way of rendering 
assistance to illegal organizations and for the propaganda of the party. 

.5. The Communist members shall make all their parliamentary work depend- 
ent on the work of the Party outside the parliament. The regular proposing 
of demonstrative measures, uot for the purpose of having them passed by the 
bourgeois majority, but for the purpose of jiropaganda, agitation, aiid organiza- 
tion, must be carried on under the direction of the party and its Central 


6. In the event of labor demonstrations in the streets or other revolutiouarjr 
movements, the Commnnist members must occupy the most conspicuous place — 
at the head of the proletarian masses. 

7. The Communist deputies must try to get in touch (under the control of 
the party) v^^ith the revolutionary workingmen, peasants, and other workers 
either by correspondence or otherwise. They must in no way act like the 
Social Democratic deputies who carry on mere business relations with the con- 
stituents. They must always be at the disposal of the Commnnist organiza- 
tions for propaganda work in the country. 

8. Each Communist member nnist remember that he is not a "legislator" 
who is bound to seek agreements with the other legislators, but an agitator of 
the Party, detailed into the enemy's camp in order to carry out the orders of 
the Party there. The Communist member is answerable not to the wide mas.< 
of his constituents, but to his own Comnnmist Party— whether lawful or 

9. The Communist members must speak in parliament in such a way as tt> be 
understood by every workman, peasant, washerwoman, shepherd; so that 
the Party may publish his sijeeches and spread them tol the most remote 
villages of the country. 

10. The rank-and-tile Communist worker must not shrink from speaking in 
the bourgeois parliaments, and not give way to the so-called experienced 
parliamentarians, even if such woikingmen are novices in parliamentary 
methods. In case of need the workingmen members may read their speeches 
from notes, in order that the speech may be printed afterwards in the papers 
or in leaflet form. 

11. The Communist members mnst make use of the parliamentary tribune to 
denounce not only the bourgeoisie and its hangers-on, but also for the denuncia- 
tion of the social patriots, reformists, the half-and-half politicians of the 
centre and other opponents of Communism, and for the wide propagation of 
the ideas of the Third International. 

12. The Communist members, even though there should be only one or two 
of them in the parliament, should by their whole conduct challenge capitalism, 
and never forget that only those are worthy of the name of Communists, who 
not in words only but in deeds are the mortal enemy of the bourgeois order 
and its social-patriotic flunkeys. 

The Trade Union Movement, Factory Committees, anu the Third International 

The trade unions, created by the working class during the period of the 
peaceful development of capitalism, were organizations of the workers for the 
struggle for the increase of the price of labor at the labor market, and the im- 
provement of labor conditions. The revolutionary Marxists endeavored by their 
influence to unite them with the political party of the proletariat, the Socinl 
Democracy, for a joint struggle for Socialism. For the same reasons that the 
international Social Democracy, with a few exceptions, proved to be not an in- 
strument of the revolutionary struggle of the proletariat for the overthrow of 
capitalism, but an organization which held back the proletariat from revolution 
in interests of the bourgeoisie, the trade unions proved to be in inost cases, duriiiir 
the war, a part of the military apparatus of the bourgeoisie, helping the latter 
to exploit from the working class as much sweat as possible for a more energetic 
warfare for capitalist profits. Containing chiefly the skilled workmen, the better 
paid, limited by their craft narrowmindedness, fettered by a bureaucratic appa- 
ratus, which had removed itself from the masses, demoralized by their oppor- 
tunist leaders, the labor xuiions betrayed not only the cause of the Social Revolu- 
tion, but even also the struggle for the improvement of the conditions of life of 
the workmen organized by them. They started from the point of view of the 
trade union struggle against the employers, and replaced it by the program of 
an amiable arrangement with the capitalists, at any cost. This policy was carried 
on not oilly by liberal unions of England and America, not only by the would-be 
"Socialist". Trade unions in Germany and Austria, but by the Syndicalist unions 
in France as well. 

2. The economic consequences of the war, the complete disorganization of worlil 
economy, the insane prices, the unlimited application of the labor of women and 
children, the aggravation of the housing conditions, all these are forcing tlu"- 
large masses of the proletariat into the struggle against capital This strug- 
gle is revolutionary warfare by its proposition, and the character that it i.s; 
assuming more and more every day ; a warfare destroying objectively the bases; 


of the capitalist order. The increase of wages, ohtained one day by the economic 
struggle of one or another category of workers, is the next day nullified by the 
high prices. The prices must continue to vise, because the capitalist class of the 
victorious countries, ruining by their policy of exploitation central and eastern 
Europe, is not only not in a position to organize world economy but is incessantly 
disorganizing it. For the success of their economic struggle, the larger masses of 
workers who up to this time have stood apart from the labor unions, are now 
flowing into their ranks in a powerful stream. In all capitalist .countries a tre- 
mendous increase of the trade unions is to be noticed, which now become organi- 
zations of the chief masses of the proletariat, not only if its advanced elements. 
Flowing into the unions, these masses strive to make them their weapons of 
battle. The sharpening of class antagonism compels the trade unions to lead 
strikes, which flow in a broad wave over the entire capitalist world, constantly 
interrupting the process of capitalist production and exchange. Increasing their 
demands in proportion to the rising prices and their own exhaustion, the working 
classes undermine the basis of all capitalist calculations, that elementary premise 
of every well organized economic management. The unions, which during the 
war had been organs of compulsion over the working masses, become in this way 
organs for the annihilation of capitalism. 

3. The old trade union bureaucracy and the old forms of organization of the 
trade unions are in every way opposing such a change in the nature of the trade 
unions. The old trade unions Bureaucracy is endeavoring in many places to 
maintain the old trade unions as organizations of the workers" aristocracy. It 
preserves the rules which make it impossible for the badly paid working classes 
to enter into the trade union organizations. The old trade union aristocracy is 
even now intensifying its efforts to replace the strike methods, which are ever 
more and more acquiring the character of revolutionary warfare between the 
bourgeoisie and the proletariat, by the policy of arrangements with the capitalists, 
the policy of long term contracts, which have lost all sense simply in view of 
constant insane rise of prices. It tries to force upon the workers the policy of 
"Joint Industrial Councils," and legally to impede the leading of sti'ikes with the 
assistance of the capitalist State. At the most tense moments of the struggle 
this bureaucracy sows trouble and confusion among the struggling masses of 
the workers, impeding the fusion of the struggle of various categories of 
workmen into one general class struggle. In these attempts it is helped by 
the old organization of the trade unions according to crafts, which breaks up the 
workmen of one branch of production into separate professional groups, not- 
withstanding their being bound together by the process of capitalist exploita- 
tion. It rests on the force of tradition of the ideology of the old labor aristoc- 
racy, which is now constantly being weakened by the process of suppression of 
the privilege of separate groups of the proletariat through the general decay of 
capitalism, the equalization of the level of the working class and the growth 
of its need and the precariousness of its livelihood. In this way the trade 
imion bureaucracy breaks up the powerful stream of the labor movement 
into weak streamlets, substitutes partial reformist demands for the general 
revolutionary aims of the movement, and on the whole retards the transfor- 
mation of the struggle of the proletariat into a revolutionary struggle for 
the annihilation of capitalism. 

4. Bearing in mind the rush of the enormous working masses into the trade 
rnions. and also the objective revolutionary character of the economic struggle 
which those masses are carrying on in spite of the trade union bureaucracy, the 
Communists must join such unions in all countries, in order to make of them 
efticient organs of the struggle for the suppression of capitalism and for Com- 
munism. They must initiate the forming of trade unions where these do not 
exist. All voluntary withdrawal from the industrial movement, every arti- 
ficial attempt to organize special unions, without being compelled thereto by 
exceptional acts of violence on the part of the trade union bureaucracy, 
such as expulsion of separate revolutionary local branches of the unions 
by the opportunist officials, or by their narrow-minded aristocratic policy, 
which prohibits the unskilled workers from entering into the organization, 
represents a great danger to the Communist movement. It threatens to hand 
over the most advanced, the most conscious workers, to the opportunist leaders, 
playing into the hands of the bourgeoisie. . . . The luke-warmness of 
the working masses, their ideological Indecision, their tendency to yield to the 
arguments of opportunist leaders, can be overcome only during the process of 
the evergrowing struggle, by degrees as the wider masses of the proletariat 
learn to understand, by experience, by their victories and defeats, that ob- 


jectiveJy it is already impossible to obtain Imman conditions of life on the 
basis of capitalist methods of management ; and by degrees as the advanced 
Communist workmen Jearn through their economic struggle to be not only 
preachers of the ideas of Communism, but also the most determined leaders 
of the economic struggle of the labor unions — only in this ^\'ay will it be possible 
to remove from the unions their opportunist leaders, only in this way will the 
Communists be able to take the lead of rlie trade-union movement, and make of 
it an organ of the revohitionary struggle for Communism. Only in this way can 
tliey prevent the break-up of tlie trade unions, and replace them by industrial 
unions, remove the old bureauiracy separated from the masses and replace it by 
the apparatus of factory-representatives, leaving only the most necessary func- 
tions to the center. 

5. Placing the object and the essence of labor organizations before them, the 
Communists ought not to hesitate before a split in such organizations, if a 
refusal to split would mean abandoning revolutionary work in the trade unions, 
and giving up tlie attempt to make of them an instrument of revolutionary 
struggle, the attemjit to orgjinize the most exploited part of the proletariat. 
But even if such a split siiould be necessary, it must be carried into effect only 
at a time when tiie Comnnuiists have succeeded by the incessant warfai'e against 
the opportunist leaders and their tactics, by their most active participation in 
the economic struggle, in persuading the wider masses of workmen that the split 
is occurring not because of the remote and as yet incomprehensible aims of the 
i-evolution, but on account of the concrete, immediate interests of the working 
class in the development of its economic struggle. The Communists in case a 
necessity for a split arises, must continuously and attentively the ques- 
tion as to whether a split might not lead to their isolation from the working 

6. Where a split between the opportunists and the revolutionary trade union 
movement has already taken place before, where, as in America, alongside the 
opportunist trade unions there are unions with revolutionary tendencies — al- 
though not Comijiunist ones — there the Ccnnmunists are bound to support such 
revolutionary unions, to persuade thein to abandon Syndicalist prejudices and 
to place themselves on the platform of Connnunism, which alone is a trustworthy 
compass in the complicated question of the economic struggle. Where within 
the trade unions or outside of them in the factories, organizations are formed, 
such as shop stewards, factory committees, etc., for the purpose of fighting 
against the counter-revolutionary tendencies of the trade-union bureaucracy, to 
support the spontaneous direct action of the proletariat, there, of course,' the 
Oomminiists must with all their energy give assistance to these organizations. 
But the support of the revolutionary trade unions, which are in a state of fer- 
ment and passing over to the class struggle, must not be neglected. On the con- 
trary, by approaching this evolution of the unions on their way to a revolution- 
ary struggle, the Connnunists will be able to play the part of aii element uniting 
the politically and industrially organized workmen in their joint struggle for 
the suppression of capitalism. 

The economic struggle of the proletariat becomes a political struggle during 
an epoch of the decline of capitalism nmch quicker than during an epoch of 
its peaceful development. Every serious economic clash may immediately place 
the workers face to face with the question of revolution. ' Therefore it' is the 
duty of the Communists in all the phases of the economic struggle to point out 
to the workers, that the success of the struggle is only possible if the working 
class conquers the capitalists in open fight, and by means of dictatorship pro- 
peeds to the organization of a Socialist order, (^'onsequently. the Communists 
must strive to create as far as i>ossible complete unity "between the trade 
unions and the Communist party, and to subordinate the unions to the prac- 
tical leadership of the Party, as the advance guard of the workers' revolutions. 
For this purpose the Ccmmuuiists should have Communist factions in all the 
trade unions and factory committees, and acquire by their means and influence 
over the labor movement and direct it. 


1. The economic struggle of the proletariat for the increase of wages and 
the imT)rovenient of the conditions of life of the masses, is getting more and 
more into a blind alley. The economic crisis, embracing one country after 
another in ever increasing proportions, is showing to even unenlightened work- 
ingmen that it is not enough to demand an increase of wages and a shortening 


of the working hours, but thnt the capitalist classes less capable every day 
of establishing the normal conditions of public economy and of guaranteeing 
to the workers at least those conditions of life which it gave them before the 
world war. Out of this growing conviction of the working masses are born 
their efforts to create organizations which will be able to commence a struggle 
for the alleviation of the situation by means of workers' control over pro- 
duction through the medium of the factory committees. This aspiration to 
create factory committees, which is more and more taking iwssession of the 
workingmen of different countries, takes its origin from the most varied causes 
(struggle against tlie counter-revolutionary bureaucracy, discouragement after 
union defeats, striving to create an organization embracing all workers), but 
in the end it results in the fight for control over industry, the special historic 
task of the factory committees. Therefore it is a mistake to form the shop 
committees only out of workingmen who are already struggling for the dic- 
tatoi-ship of the proletariat; on the contrary, the duty of the Communist Party 
is to organize all the workingmen on the ground for the economic crisis, and 
to lead them toward the strv;ggle for the dictatorship of the proletariat by 
developing the struggle for workers' control over production, which they all 

2. The Communist Party will be able to accomplish this task if, taking part 
in the struggle in the factory committees, it will instill in the minds of the 
masses the consciousness that a systematic reconstruction of the public econ- 
omy on the basis of a capitalist order, which would mean its new enslavement 
by the government in favor of the industrial class, is now fatally impossible. 
The organization of the economic management corresiionding with the interests 
of the working masses, is possible only when the government is in the hands 
of the working class, when the strong hand of the labor dictatorship will 
proceed to the suppression of capitalism and to the new Socialist organization. 

3. The struggle of the factory committees against capitalism has for its' 
immediate object workers' control over production. 

The workers of every enterprise, every branch of industry, no matter what 
their trade, suffer from the "sabotage" of production on the part of capitalists, 
wh<i frequently consider it more profitable to stop production in order that it 
may be easier to compel the workingmen to agree to unsatisfactory labor 
conditions, or not to invest new canital in industry at a moment of a general 
rise in prices. The need to protect themselves against such sabotage of pro- 
duction by the capitalists luiites the workingmen independently of their polit- 
ical opinions, and therefore, the factory conunittees elected by the workingmen 
of a given enterprise are the broadest mass organizations of the proletariat. 
But the disorganization of capitalist management is the result not only of 
the conscious will of the capitalists, but in a still greater degree an inevitable 
decline of capitalism. Therefore in their struggle against the consequences of 
such a decline, the factory committees must go beyond the limits of control in 
separate factories. The factory committees of separate factories will soon 
be faced with the question of workers' control over the whole branches of 
industry and their combinati<ms. And as any attempt on the part of the 
workingmen to exercise a control over the supplying of the factories with raw ma- 
terial or to control the financial operations of the Factory owners, v/ill meet 
with the most energetic measures against the working class on the pait of the 
bourgeoisie and the capitalist government, the struggle for workers' control 
over production must lead to the struggle for a seizure of power by the working 

4. The campaign in favor of the factory committees n>ust be conducted in 
such a way that into the minds of the popular masses, even not directly be- 
longing to the factory proletariat, there should be instilled the conviction that 
the bourgeoisie is responsible for the economic crisis, while the proletariat, im- 
der the motto of workers' control of indstry. is struggling for the organization 
of produ^-tion. for the suppression of speculation, dism-ganization and high 
prices, the duty of the Communist Parties is to struggle for control over pro- 
duction on the ground of the most insistent questions of the day, the lack of 
fuel, the transport crisis — to unite the different groups of the proletariat and 
to attract wide circles of the petty bour<reoisie, which is ber-omino- nioi'e and 
mo»-e proletarized day by day, and is suffering extremely from, the economic 

5. The factory committees cannot be substituted for the labor unions. Dur- 
ing the process of struggle they mav forTU unions outside the limits of single 
factories and trades, according to the branches of production, and create a 


-general apparatus for the direction of the struggle. The labor unions are 
already now centralized fighting organs, although they do not embrace such 
wide masses of workingmen as the factory committees are capable of, these 
latter being loose organizations which arc accessible to all the workers of a 
given enterprise. The division of tasks between the shop committees and the 
industi-ial unions is the result of the historical development of the social revolu- 
tion. The industrial unions organize the working masses for the struggle for 
the increase of wages and shortening of work-hours on a national scale. The 
factory committees are organized for workers' control over production, for tlir 
struggle against the crisi.'s, cm.bracing all the workingmen of the enterprises, but 
tlieir struggle can only gradually assume the character of a national one. 
The Connnunists must endeavor to render the factory comn>ittecs the nuclei of 
the labor unions and to support them in proportion as the unions overcome 
the counter-revolutionary tendencies of their bureaucracy, as they consciously 
h(>come organs of the revolution. 

G. The duty of the Connnunists consists in inspiring the labor unions and the 
factory committee with a spirit of determined struggle, and the consciousness 
and knowledge of the best methods of such a struggle — tlie spirit of Commun- 
ism.. In execution of this duty the Communists must practically subordinalc 
the factory committees and the unions to the Connnunist Party, and thus create 
a proletarian mass organ, a basis for a powerful centraliz(Hl party of the 
proletariat, embracing all the organizations of the proletarian struggle, lendin;: 
them all to one aim, to the victory of the working class, through the dictator- 
ship of the proletariat to Communism. The Communists converting the labor 
unions and factory committees into powerful weai)ons of the n'volution, pre- 
pare these miiss organizations for the great task which they will have aft«'r 
the establishment of the dictator.shiii of the proletariat, for the task of being 
the Instmment of the reorganization of economic life on a Socialistic basis. 
The labor unions, developed as industrial iniions and supported by the factory 
committees as their factory organizations, will then make the working 
acquainted with their tjisks of production: they will educate the most experi- 
enced workingmen to become leaders of the factories to control the technical 
specialists, and, together with the repre.sentatives of the Workers' State, will 
lay down the plan of the Socialist economic policy, and carry it out. 


1. The labor unions tried to form international unions even in time of peace, 
because during strikes the capitalists used to invite workers from other coun- 
tries, as strike-breakers. But the International of Labor T'nions had only a 
secondary importance before the war. It made one union support another 
when needful ; it organized social statistic, hut it did nothing for the organiza- 
tion of a joint struggle, because the labor unions, under the leader.ship of op- 
portunists, strove to avoid all revolutionary collisions on an international scale. 
The opportunist leaders of the lal)or unions, who, each in his own country, 
during the war were flunkies of the bourgeoisie, are now striving to revive the 
International of Labor Union, attempting to make it a weapon for the direct 
struggle of international world capital against the proletariat. Under the di- 
rection of Legien, Jouhaux, Gompers, they are creating a Labor Unreau of the 
League of Nations, the organization of international capitalist robbery. In all 
countries they are attempting to crush the strike movement by means of laws, 
compelling the workmen to submit to the arbitration of representatives of the 
■capitalist State. 

They are endeavoring to obtain concessions for the skilled workers by 
means of agreements with the capitalists, in order to break in this way 
tl'.e growing unity of the working class. The Amsterdam International of 
Labor Unions is thus a substitute for the bankrupt Second International of 

The Communist workers who are members of the labor unions in all 
C'Oimtries must, on the contrary, strive to create an international battle fr<nit 
of labor unions. The question now is not financial relief in case of strikes: 
but when the danger is threatening the working class of one country, the 
labor unions of the others, being organizations of the larger, shoidd 
all come to its they should make it impossible for the bourgeoisie of 
their respective countries to render assistance to the bourgeoisie of the country 
engaged in the struggle against the working class. The economic struggle 
against the working class, the economic str,uggle of the proh'tariat in all conn- 


tries, is daily becoming more and more a revolutionai-y .struggle. Therefore the 
labor unions must consciously use their forces for the support of all revolution- 
ary struggles in their own and in other countries. For this purpose they must 
not only, in their own countries, strive to attain as great centralization of their 
struggle as possible, but they must do so on an international scale by joining the 
Communist International, and by vmiting in one army the different parts of 
-which shall carry on the struggle co-jointly, supporting one another. 

Whesst and Under What Conditions Soviets of Workers' Deputies 

Should Be Formed 

1. The Soviets of Workers' Deputies appeared for the first time in Russia 
in 1905, at a time when the revolutionary movement of Russian workingmen 
was at its heiglit. Already in 1905 the Petrograd Soviet of Workers' Deputies 
was taking the first instinctive steps towards a seizure of the power. And at 
that time the Petrograd Soviet was strong only as far as it had a chance 
of acquiring political power. As soon as the Imperial counter-revolution rallied 
its forces and the labor movement slackened, the Soviet, after a short vege- 
tatitm, ceased to exist. 

2. When in 190.5, at the beginning of a new strong revolutionary wave, 
the idea began to awaken in Russia regarding the immediate organization of 
Soviets of Workers' Deputies, the Bolshevik party warned the workingmen 
against the immediate formation of the Soviets, and pointed out that such a 
foi'iuation would be well-timed only at the moment when the revolution 
■would have already begun, and when the turn would have come for the direct 
■struggle for the power. 

3. At the beginning of the February revolution of 1917. when the Soviets of 
Workers' Deputies were transformed into Soviets of Wox-kers' and Soldiers' 
Deputies, they drew into the .sphere of their influence the widest circles of 
the popular masses and at once acquired a tremendous authority, because 
the real force was on tlieir side, in their hands. But when the liberal bour- 
geoisie recovered from the suddenness of the first revolutionary blows, and 
^vhen the social traitors, the Socialist Revolutionaries and the Mensheviki. 
lielped the Russian bourgeoisie to take the power into its hands, the importance 
of the Soviets began to dwindle. Only after the Jidy days and after the 
ill-success of Kornilov's counter-revolutionary campaign, when the wider popu- 
lar masses began to m<ive, and when the threat of the counter-revolutionary 
Iwurgeois coalition government came quite near, then the Soviets began to 
flourish again ; and they soon required a pi'ominent position in the country. 

4. The history of the German and the Austrian revolutions shows the same 
situation. When the popular masses revolted, when the revolutionary wave 
rose so high that it washed away the strongholds of the monarchies of the 
Hohenzollerns and the Hapsburgs, in Germany and in Austria, the Soviets or 
Workers' and Soldiers' Deputies were formed with gigantic rapidity. At first 
the real force was on their side, and the Soviets were well on the way to 
become practically the power. But, owing to a whole series of historical 
■conditions, as soon as the power began to pass to the bourgeoisie and the 
counter-revolutionary Social Democrats, then the Soviets began to decline 
and lose all importance. During the days of the unsuccessful counter-revolu- 
tionary revolt of Kapp-Liittwitz in Germany, the Soviets again resumed their 
activity, but when the struggle ended again in the victory of the bourgeoisie 
and the social-traitors, the Soviets, which had just begun to revive, once more 
died away. 

5. The above facts prove that for the formation of Soviets certain definite 
premises are necessary. To organize Soviets of Workers' Deputies, and trans- 
form them into Soviets of Workers' and Soldiers' Deputies, the following con- 
ditions are necessary : 

a) A great revolutionary impulse among the widest circle of working men 
and working women, the soldiers and the workers in general ; 

h) The acuteness of a political economic crisis attaining such a degree that 
the power begins to slip out of the hands of the government ; 

c) A serious decision to begin a systematic and regular struggle developing 
in the ranks of considerable masses of the workingmen, and first of all in 
the ranks of the Communist Party. 

6. In the absence of these conditions the Conununists may and should systera- 
ntically and insistently propagate the idea of Soviets, jxipuJarize it among the 


masses and demonstrate to the widest circles of the population that the Soviets- 
are the only efficient form of government during the transition to complete 
Communism". Bnt to proceed to a direct organization of Soviets in the absence 
of the above three conditions is impossible. 

7. The attempt of the social traitors in Germany to introduce the Soviets 
into the general bourgeois-democratic constitutional system, is treason to the 
workers' cause and deception of the workingmen. Real Soviets are possible 
only as a farm of state organization, relieving bourgeois democracy, breaking 
it up and replacing it by a dictatorship of the proletariat. 

8. The propaganda of the rit^lit leaders of the Independents (Hilferdmg. 
Kautsky, and others), proving the compatibility of the Soviet "system" with 
the bourgeois Constituent Assembly, is either a complete misunderstanding of 
the laws of development of a proletarian revolution, or a conscious deceiving 
of the working class. The Soviets are the dictatorship of the proletariat. The 
Constituent Assembly is the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie. To unite and 
reconcile the dictatorship of the working class with that of the bourgeoisie is 

9. The propaganda of some representatives of the Left Independents in 
Germany presenting the workers with a ready-made, formal plan of a "Soviet 
system,'"' which has no relation whatever to the concrete process of the civil 
war, is a doctrinaire pastime which draws the workers away from their 
essential tasks of the real struggle for power. 

10. The attempts of separate Communist groups in France, Italy, America, 
England to form Soviets not embracing the larger working masses and unable, 
therefore, to enter into a direct struggle for power, are only prejudicial to 
the actual preparation of a Soviet revolution. Such artificial hot-house 
"Soviets" soon become transformed in the best of cases into small associations 
for propaganda of the idea of a Soviet power, and in the worst case stich 
miserable "Soviets" are capable only of compromising the idea of the power 
of "Soviets" in the eyes of the popular masses. 

11. At the present time there exists a special condition in Austria, where 
the working class has succeeded in preserving its Soviets, which unite large 
masses of workers. Here the situation resembles the period between February 
and Oetol)er, 1917, in Russia. The Soviets in Austria represent a considerable 
political force, and appear to be tlie embryo of a new power. 

It must be niiderstood that in such a situation the Communists onght to par- 
ticipate in these Soviets, help the Soviets to i:»enetrate into all phases of the 
social economic and political life of the country ; they should create Commu- 
nist factions within these Soviets, and by all means aid their development. 

12. Soviets without a revolution are impossible. Soviets without a pro- 
letarian revolution inevitably became a parody of Soviets. Tlie authentic 
Soviets of the masses are the historically revealed form of the dictatorship of the 
proletariat. All sincere and serious partisans of the power of Soviets should 
deal cautionsly with the idea of Soviets, and while indefatigably propagating 
it among the, proceed to the direct realization of such Soviets only under 
the conditions mentioned above. 

Theses on the National and Colonial Questions. 


1. It is typical of bourgeois democracy, by its very nature, to take an abstract 
or forinj'd attitude towards the question of the colonies in general, and to that 
of national e(piality in particular. Under the appearance of the eqttality of 
human beings in general, bourgeois democracy proclaims the formal or judicial 
equality of the i)roprietor and the proletarian, of the exploiter and the exploited, 
thereby greatly deceiving the oppressed classes. On the pretext of absolute 
equality which is in itself but a rellection of the relations caused by commodity 
production, he converts them into an instnnnent in the struggle"^ against the 
abolition of classes. But the real essence of the demand for equality is based 
on the demand for the abolition of classes. 

2. In conformity with its chief task — the struggle against boni'geois democ- 
racy and the denunciation of its lies and deceptions — the Communist Party 
being the class conscious expression ot tlie struggle of the proletariat to cast off 
the yoke of the bourgeoisie, must not advance any abstract and formal princi- 
ples on the national question, but must first analyz-e liie historical, and, before 


nil, the economic conditions; second, it must clearly distinguish the interests 
of 'the oppressed classes, of the toilers, of the exploited, from the general con- 
ception of national interests which in reality means the interests of the ruling 
class; third, it must equally separate the oppressed and subject nations from 
the dominating nations, in* contradistinction to the liourgeois democratic lies 
concealing the enslavement of a vast majority of the population of the earth 
by an insignificant minority of the advanced capitalist nations which is peculiar 
to the epoch of financial capital and imperialism. 

3. The imperialist war of 1914 has deujonstrated very clearly to all nations 
and to all opiiressed classes of the world the deceitfulness of bourgeois demo- 
cratic phraseology. That war has been carried on on both sides under the false 
motto of the freedom of nations and luttional self-determination. But the 
Brest Litovsk and Bucharest peace on the one hand, and the Versailles and 
Saint-Germain peace on the other, have shown how the bourgeoisie establishes 
even "national" boundaries in conformity with its own economic interests, 
•'National" boundaries are for the bourgeoisie nothing but market commodities. 
The so-called "League of Nations" is nothing but an insurance policy in which 
the victoi-s mutually guarantee each other their prey. The striving for the 
reconstruction of national unity and of the "re-union of alienated territories" 
on the part of the bourgeoisie, is nothing but an attempt of the vanquished to 
gather forces for new wars. The re-uniting of the nationalities artificially torn 
asunder corresponds also to the interests of the prolet;u-iat only through revolu- 
tionary struggle and by the overthrow of the bourgeoisie. The League of Na- 
tions and the policy of the imperialist powers after the war demonstrate this 
even more clearly and definitely, making the revolutionary struggle in the 
.■idvanced countries more acute, increasing the ferment of the working masses 
of the colonies and the sul>ject countries, and dispelling the middle class na- 
tionalistic illusion of the possibility of peaceful collaboration and equality of 
D.-itions under capitalism. 

4. It follows from the fundamental principles laid down above, that the policy 
of the Conununist International on the National and Colonial questions must be 
chiefly to bring about a union of the proletarian and working masses of all nations 
and countries for a joint revolutionary struggle leading to the overthrow of 
capitalism, without which national equality and oppression cannot be abolished. 

5. The. political situation of the world at the present time has placed the 
question of tlie dictatorship (^f the proletariat in the foreground, and all the events 
of world politics are inevitably concentrating around one point, namely, the 
struggle of the bourgeois world against the Russi;in Soviet Republic, which is 
grouping around itself the Soviet movements of the vanguard of the workers of 
all countries, and all national liberation movements of the colonial and subject 
counti-ies, which have been taught by bitter experience that there can be no salva- 
tion for them outside of a union with the revolutionary proletariat, and the 
triumph of the Soviet power over Imperialism. 

6. Consequently, we nutst not content ourselves with a mere recognition or 
declaration concerning the tmlty of the workers of different nations, but we 
must carry out a policy of realizing the closest union between all national and 
colonial liberation movements and Soviet Russia, determining the forms of this 
union in accordance with the stage of development of the Conununist movement 
among the proletariat of each country, or the revolutionary liberation movement 
hi the subject nations and backward countries. 

7. Federation is a transitional form towards the complete imion of the workers 
of all countries. It has already proved its efficiency in practice in the relations 
of the Socialist Federated Soviet Republic of Russia to the other Soviet Republics 
(Hungarian, Finnish, Lettish, in the past; and the Azerbeidjan and Ukrainian 
in the present ) , as also within the borders of the Socialist Federal Soviet Republic 
of Russia with regard to the nationalities which had neither their own govern- 
ment nor any self-governing institutions (for example, the autonomous Republic 
of Bashkiria and the Tartar Republic, wbich were formed in 1019 — 1920 by the 
Russian Socialist Federated Soviet Republic). 

8. It is the task of the Communist International in this regard not only to 
develop further, but also to study and test by experience, these federations which 
have arisen out of the Soviet order and the Soviet movement. Recognizing fed- 
eration as a transition form towards complete tuiion, we must strive for ever 
closer federative connections, bearing in mind first, the impossibility of maintain- 
ing the Soviet Republic surrounded by powerful imperialist nations, without a 
close union with other Soviet Republics ; second, the necessity of a close economic 
union of the Soviet Republics, without which the restoration of the forces of pro 


(luction destroyed by Imperialism, and the assuring of the welfare of the workers 
is impossible ; third, the striving towards the creation of a unified world economy 
based on one general plan and regulated by the proletariat of all the nations of 
the world. This tendency has already manifested itself under capitalism, and is 
undoubtedly going to be further developed and perfected by Socialism. 

9. With regard to inter-state relations, the international policy of the Com- 
munist International cannot limit itself to a mere formal verbal declaration of 
the recognition of the equality of nations, which does not involve any practical 
obligations, such as has been made by the bourgeois democrats who styled them- 
selves socialist. The constant violations of the equality of nations and the 
infringement upon the rights of national minorities practised in all the capitalist 
states in spite of the democratic constitutions, must be denounced in all the propa- 
ganda and agitational activity of the Communist International, within, as well 
as outside the parliament. It is likewise necessary, first, to explain constantly 
that only the Soviet regime is able to give the nations real equality, by uniting the 
proletariat and all the masses of the workers in the stiuggle against the bour- 
geoisie ; second, to support the i-evolutionary movement among the subject nations 
(for example, Ireland, American negroes, etc.) and in the colonies. 

Without this last, especially important conditiun the struggle against the 
oppression of dependent nations and colonies, as well as the recognition of their 
right to an independent existence, is only a misleading signboard, such as has 
been exhibited by the i)arties of the Second International. 

10. It is the habitual practice not only of the centre parties of the Second 
International, but also of those which have left it. to recognize 
in words and then to adulterate it in their propaganda, agitation, and practical 
activity by mixing it up with petty bourgeois nationalism and pacifism. This 
is to be found even among those parties that at present call themselves Com- 
munist. The struggle against this evil, and against the deep-rooted petty 
bourgeois national pi-ejudices (manifesting themselves in various forms, such 
as race hatred, national ant.-igonism and antisemitism). must be brought to the 
foreground the more vigorously because of the urgent necessity of transforming 
the dictatorship of the proletariat and changing it from a national basis (i. e., 
existing in one country and incapable of exercising an influence over world 
politics), into an international dictatorship ( i. e., a dictatorship of the proletariat 
of at least several advanced countries capable of exercising a determined influ- 
ence upon world politics). Petty bourgeois internationalism means the mere 
recognition of the rights of national equality, and preserves intact national ego- 
tism. Proletarian internationalism, on the other hand, demands: (1) the sub- 
ordination of the intei'e.sts of the proletarian struggle in one nation to the inter- 
ests of that struggle on an international scale; (2) the capability and the readi- 
ness on the part of one nation which has gained a victory over the bourgeoisie, of 
making the greatest national sacrifices for the overthrow of international 

In the countries in which fully developed capitalist states exist, the labor 
parties, comprising the vanguard of the proletariat, must consider it as their 
primary and most important task to combat the opportunist an<l petty bourgeois 
pacifist confusion of the ideas and the policy of internationalism. 

11. AVith regard to those states and nati(inalities where a backward, mainly 
feudal, patriarchal, or patriarchal-agrarian regime prevails, the following must 
be borne in mind: 1) All ("onnnunist parties must give active support to the 
revolutionary movements of liberation, the form of support to be determined 
by a study of existing conditions, carried on by the party wherever there is 
one. This duty of rendering active support is to be impo.«ed in the first place- 
on the workers of those countries on whom the subject nation is dependent 
in a colonial or financial way: 2) Naturally, a struggle must be carried on 
against the reactionary nudiaeval influences of the clergy, the christian mis- 
sions, and similar elements; H) It is iilso necessary to combat the pan-Islam 
and pan-Asiatic and similar movements, which are" endeavoring to utilize the 
liberation struggle against European and American imperialism for the purpose 
of strengthening the power of Turkish and .lapanese iniperiiilists, of the nobility, 
of the large land owners, of the clergy, etc.: 4) It is of special importance to 
support the peasant movements in backward countries against the land owners 
and all feudal survivals: above all, we nmst strive as far as possible to give the 
peasant movement a revolutionary character, to organize the peasants "and all 
the exploited into the Soviets, and thus bring about the closest possible union 
between the romminiist proletariat of Western Europe and the revolutionary 
peasant movement of the East and of the colonial and subject countries; 5) It 
is likewise necessary to wage determined war against the attempt of quasi- 

APPE^^DIX, PART 1 143.. 

Coniimiiiist revolutionists to cloak the liboration movement in the backward 
coimtries with a Cunnnnnist garb. It is the duty of the Communist International 
to support the revolutionary movement in the colonies and in the backward' 
countries, for the exclusive purpose of uniting the various units of the future- 
proletarian parties — such as are Comnnuiist not t)nly in name^ — in all back- 
ward countries and educate them to the consciousness of their specific tasks, i. e.,. 
to the tasks of the struggle against the bourgeois democratic tendencies within 
their respective nationalities. The Communist International muist establish 
temporai'y relations and even unions with the revolutionary movements in the 
colonies and backward countries, without, however, amalgamating with them, but 
preserving the independent character of the proletarian movement, even though 
it be still in its embryonic state. 6) It is essential continually to expose the 
deception fostered among the masses of the toilers in all, and especially in the 
backward countries, by the imperialist powers aided by privileged classes of" 
the subject countries, in creating under the mask of political independence various 
governments and state institutions which are in reality completely dependent 
upon them economically, financially and in a military sense. As a striking 
example of the deception practised upon the working class of a subject country 
through the combined efforts of Allied Imperialism and bourgeoisie of the 
given nation, we may cite the Palestine affair of the Zionists, where, under the- 
pretext of creating a Jewish state in Palestine, in which the Jews form only an 
insignificant part of the population. Zionism has delivered the native Arabian 
working population t(» the exploitation of England. Only a union of Soviet 
Republics can bring salvation to the dependent and weak nationalities under 
present International conditions. 

12. The age long enslavement of the colonial and weak nationrJities by the 
imperialist powers, has given rise to a feeling of I'ancour among the masses of 
the enslaved countries, as well as to a feeling of distrust towards the oppressive - 
nations in general and towards the proletariat of those nations. These senti- 
ments have becojjie strengthened by the base treachery of the majority of the- 
official leaders of the proletariat in the years of 1914-1919, when the social 
patriots came out in defence of their fatherlands and of the "rights" of their 
bourgeoisie to the enslavement of the colonies and to the plunder of the financially 
dependent countries. These sentiments can be completely rooted out only by 
the abolition of imperialism in the advanced countries and the radical trans- 
formation of all the foundations of economic life in the backward countries. 
Thus it will take a long time for these national prejudices to disappear. This upon the class conscious proletariat of all countries the duty of exercising 
special caution and care with regard to these national sentiments still surviving 
in the countries and nationalities which have been subjected to lasting enslave- 
ment, and also of making necessary concessions in order more speedily to remove 
this distrust and prejudice. The victory over capitalism cannot be fully achieved 
and carried to its ultimate goal unless the proletariat and the toiling masses of 
all nations of the world rally of their own accord in a harmonious and close 


1. To determine more especially the relation of the Communist International 
to the revolutionary movements in the countries dominated by capitalistic im- 
perialism, for instance, China and India, is one of the most important questions 
before the Second Congress of the Third Internationiil. The history of the 
world revolution has come to a peiiod when a proper understanding of this re- 
lation is indispensable. The great European war and its results have shown 
clearly that the of non-European subject countries are inseparably con- 
nected with the proletarian movement in Europe, as a consequence of the cen- 
tralization of world capitalism — for instance, the sending of colonial troops and 
huge armies of workers to the battle front during the war, etc. 

2. One of the main sources from which European capitalism draws its chief 
strength is to be found in the colonial possessions and deijendencies. Without 
the control of the extensive ??V??V and vast fields of exploitation in the colonies, 
the capitalist powers of Europe, cannot maintain their existence even for a 
short time. P]ngland, the stronghold of imperialism, has been suffering from 
overproduction for more than a century. But for the extensive colonial pos- 
sessions ac(iuired for the sale of her surplus products and as a source of raw 
materials for her ever-growing industries, the capitalistic structure of England 


would have been crushed uuder its own weight long ago. By euslayiug the hun- 
dreds of millions of inhabitants of Asia and Africa, English imperialism succeeds 
so far in keeping the British proletariat under the domination of the bourgeoisie. 

3. Super-profit gained in the colonies is the mainstay of modern capitalism 
and so long as the latter is not deprived of this source of super-profit, it will 
not be easy for the European working class to overthrow the capitalist order. 
Thanks to "the possibilitv of the extensive and intensive exploitation of human 
labor and natural resources in the colonies, the capitalist nations of Europe 
are trviug, not without success, to recuperate their present bankruptcy. By 
exploiting the masses in the colonies, European imperialism will be m a iwsition 
to give concession after concession to the labor aristocracy at home While, on 
the one hand, European imperialism seeks to lower the standard of living of the 
home proletariat bv bringing into competition the productions of the lower paid 
workers in subjectV-ountries, on the other hand, it wnll not hesitate to go to the 
extent of sacrificing the entire surplus value in the home country so long as it 
continues to gain its huge super-profits in the colonies. . , ^, , ^ • 

4 The breaking up of the colonial empire, together with the proletarian 
revolution in the home country, will ovei'thiow the capitalist system in Europe. 
Consequently, the Communist International must widen the sphere of its 
activities. It must establish relations with those revolutionary forces that 
are working for the overthrow of imperialism in the countries subjected 
politically and economically. These two forces must be co-ordinated if the 
final success of the world revolution is to be guaranteed. 

.5. The Communist International is the concentrated will of the world revo- 
lutionary proletariat. Its mission is to organize the working class of the whole 
world for the overthrow of the capitalistic order and the establishment of 
Communism. The Third International is a fighting body which must assume 
the task of combining the revolutionary forces of all the countries of the 
world. Dominated as it was by a group of politicians, permeated with bour- 
geois culture, the Second International failed to appreciate the importance of 
the colonial question. For them the w'orld did not exist outside of Europe. 
They could not see the necessity of co-ordinating the revolutionary movement 
of Europe with those in the non-European countries. Instead of giving moral 
and material help to the revolutionary movement in the colonies, the members 
of the Second International themselves became imperialists. 

6. Foreign imperialism, imposed on the Eastern peoples prevented them from 
developing, socially and economically, side by side wath their felhtws in Europe 
and America. Owing to the imperialist policy of preventing industrial devel- 
opment in the colonies, a proletarian class, in the strict sense of the word, 
could not come into existence there until recently. The ingenious craft indus- 
tries were destroyed to make room for the products of the centralized indus- 
tries in the imperialistic countries, con.sequently a majority of the population 
was driven to the land to produce food, grains, and raw materials for export 
to foreign lands. On the other hand, there followed a rapid concentration of 
land in the hands of the big landowners, of financial capitalists, and the state, 
thus creating a huge landless peasantry. The great bulk of the population 
Avas kept in a state of illiteracy. As a result of this policy, the spirit of revolt 
latent in every subject people, found its expression only through the small, 
educated middle class. 

Foreign domination has obstructed the free development of the social forces, 
therefore, its overthrow is the first step towards a revolution in the colonies. 
So to help overthrow the foreign rule in the colonies is not to endorse the 
nationalist aspirations of the native bourgeoisie, but to open the way to the 
smothered proletariat there. 

7. There are to be found in the dependent countries two distinct movements 
which every day grow farther apart from each other. One is the bourgeois 
democratic nationalist movement, with a programme of political independence 
uuder the bourgeois order, and the other is the mass action of the poor and 
ignorant peasants and workers for their lil)eration from all sorts of exploita- 
tion. The former endeavor to control the latter, and often succeed to a certain 
extent, but the Communist International and the parties affected must stmggle 
against such control, and help to develop class consciousness in the working 
masses of the colonies. For the overthrow of foreign capitalism, which is 
the first step toward revolution in the colonies, the co-operation of the bour- 
geois nationalist revolutionary elements is useful. 

But the foremost and necessary task is the formation of Communist Parties 
which will organize the peasants and workers and lead them to the revolution 


and to the establishment of soviet republics. Thus the masses in the backward 
countries may reach Communism, not through capitalistic development, but 
led by the class conscious proletariat of the advanced capitalist countries. 

8. The real strength of the liberation movements in the colonies is no longer 
confined to the narrow circle of bourgeois democratic nationalists. In most 
of the colonies there already exist organized revolutionary parties which strive 
to be in close connection with the working masses. (The relation of the 
Communist International with the revolutionary movement in the colonies 
should be realized through the mediums of these parties or groups, because 
they were the vanguard of the working class in their respective countries.) 
They are not verv large today, but they reflect the aspirations of the masses 
and' the latter will follow them to the revolution. The Communist parties of 
the different imperialistic countries must work in conjunction with these pro- 
letarian parties of the colonies, and, through them, give all moral and material 
support to the revolutionary movement in general. 

9. The revolution in the colonies is not going to be a Communist revolution 
in its first stages. But from the outset the leadership is in the hands of a 
Communist vanguard, the revolutionary masses will not be led astray, but 
will go ahead through the successive periods of development of revolutionary 
experience. Indeed, it would be extremely erroneous in many of the Oriental 
countries to try to solve tie agrarian problem according to pure Communist 
principles. In "its first stages the revolution in the colonies must be carried on 
with a programme which will include many petty bourgeois reform clauses, 
such as division of land, etc. But from this it does not follow at all that 
the leadership of the revolution will have to be surrendered to the bourgeois 
democrats. On the contrary, the proletarian parties must carry on vigorous 
and systematic propaganda of the Soviet idea, and organize the peasants' and 
workers' Soviets as soon as possible. These Soviets will work in co-operation 
with the Soviet Republics in the advanced capitalistic countries for the ulti- 
mate overthrow of the capitalist order throughout the world. 

Thesis on the Agrarian Question 

1. No one but the city industrial proletariat, led by the Communist Party, 
can save the laboring masses in the country from the pressiire of capital 
and landlordism, from dissolution and from inperialistic wars, ever inevitable 
as long as the capitalist regime endures. There is no salvation for the peasants 
except to join the Communist proletariat, to support with heart and soiil 
its revolutionary struggle to throw off the yoke of the landlords and the 

On the other hand, the industrial workers will be unable to carry out their 
universal historic mission, and to liberate humanity from the bondage of capital 
and war, if they shut themselves within their separate guilds, their nr.rrow 
trade interests, and restrict themselves self-sufficiently to a desire for the 
improvement of their sometimes tolerable botirgeois conditions of life. That 
is what happens in most advanced cottntries possessing a "labor aristocracy,'* 
which forms the basis of the would-be parties of the Second International, who 
are, in fact, the worst enemies of Socialism, traitors to it, bourgeois jingoes, 
agents of the bourgeoisie in the labor movement. The proletariat becomes a 
truly revolutionary class, truly Socialist in its actions, only by acting as the 
vanguard of all those who work and are being exploited, as their leader in 
the struggle for the overthrow of the oppressors; and this cannot be achieved 
without carrying the class struggle into the agrictiltural districts, without 
making the laboring masses of the country all gather around the Communist 
Party of the town proletariat, without the peasants being educated by the 
town proletariat. 

2. The laboring and exploited masses in the cotmtry, which the town pro- 
letariat must lead on to the fight, or at least wih over to its side, are repre- 
sented in all capitalist coimtries by the following groups : 

In the first place, the agrictiltural proletariat, the hired laborers (by the year, 
by the day, l)y the job), making their living by wage hibor in capitalist, agri- 
cultural or industrial establishments; the independent organization of this class, 
separated from the other groups of the country population (in a political, mili- 
tary, trade, co-operative, educational sense), and an energetic propaganda among 
it, in order to win it over to the side of the Soviet power and of the dictatorship 
of the proletariat, must be the fundamental task of the Comnnniist parties in all 

04931 — 40 — app., pt. 1 11 


In the second place, the semi-proletariat or small peasants, those who make 
their living partly by working for wages in agricultural and industrial capitalist 
establishments, partly by toiling on their own or a rented parcel of land yielding 
but a part of the necessary food produce for their families ; this class of the rural 
population is rather numerous in all capitalist countries, but its existence and 
its peculiar position are hushed up by the representatives of the bourgeoisie 
and the yellow "Socialists" affiliated to the Second International. Some of these 
people intentionally cheat the workers, but others follow blindly the average 
views of the public and mix up this special clas.s with the whole mass of the 
"peasantry." Such a method of bourgeois deception of the workers is used more 
particularly in Germany and France, and then in America and other countries. 
Provided that the work of the Communist Party is well organized, this group 
is sure to side with the Communists, the conditions of life of these half-prole- 
tarians being very hard, the advantage the Soviet power and the dictatorship of 
the proletariat would bring them being enormous and immediate. In some coun- 
tries there is no clear-cut distinction between these two groups ; it is, therefore, 
permissible under certain conditions to form them into separate organizations. 

In the third place, the little proprietors, the small farmers who possess by 
right of ownership or on rent small portions of land which satisfy the needs of 
their family and of their farming without requiring any additional wage labor ; 
this part of the population as a class gains everytliing by the victory of the 
proletariat, which brings with it: a) liberation from the payment of rent or of 
a part of the crops (for instance, the metayers in France, the same arrangements 
in Italy, etc.) to the owners of large estates: b) abolition of all mortgages; c) 
abolition of many forms of pressure and of dependence on the owners of large 
estates (forests and their use, etc.) ; d) immediate help from the proletarian 
?tate for farm work (permitting use by peasants of the agrueiltural implements 
and in part of the buildings on the big capitalist estates expropriated by the 
proletariat, the immediate transformation by the proletarian state power of 
all rural co-operatives and agricultural companies, which under the capitalist 
rule were chiefly supporting the wealthy and the middle peasantry, into institu- 
tions primarily for the support of the poor peasantry, that is to say, the proletari- 
ans, semi-proletarians, small farmers, etc.) 

At the same time the Connnunist I'arty should be thoroughly aware that during 
the dictatorship of the proletariat, at least some partial hesitations are inevitable 
in this class, in favor of unrestricted free trade and free use of the rights of 
private property. For this class, being a seller of commodities (although on 
a small scale), is necessarily demoralized by profit-hunting and habits of pro- 
prietorship. And yet, provided thei'e is a consistent proletarian policy — and the 
victorious proletariat deals relentlessly with tlie owners of the large estates and 
the landed peasants — the hesitations of the class in question will not be consid- 
erable, and cannot change the fact that on the whole this class will side with 
the proletarian revolution. 

3. All these three groups taken together constitute the majority of the agrarian 
popiUation in all capitalist countries. This guarantees in full the success of the 
proletarian revolution, not only in the towns but in the country as well. The 
opposite view is very widely spread, but it persists only becaiise of a systematic 
deception on the part of bourgeois science and statistics. They hush up by every 
means any mention of the deep chasm which divides the rural classes we have 
indicated, from the exploiters, the landowners and capitalists on the one hand, 
from the landed peasants on the other. It holds further because of the incapacity 
and the failure of the "heroes" affiliated to the yellow Second International and 
the "labor aristocracy," demoralized by imperialistic privileges, to do gemiine 
propaganda work among the poor in the country. All the attention of the 
opportunists was given and is being given now to the arrangement of theoretical 
and practical agreements with the bourgeoisie, including the landed and the middle 
peasantry (see Paragraph concerning these classes) and not to the revolutionary 
overthrow of the bourgeois government and the bourgeois class by the proletariat. 
In the third place, this view persists because of the force of inveterate prejudice 
possessing already a great stability (and connected with all bourgeois-democratic 
and parliamentary prejudices) the incapacity to grasp a simple truth fully 
proved by the Marxian theory and confirmed by the practice of the proletarian 
revolution in Russia. This truth consists in the fact that the peasant population 
of the three classes we have mentioned above, being extremely oppressed, scat- 
tered, and doomed to live in half-civilized conditions in all countries, even in the 
most advanced, is economically, socially, and morally interested in the victory 
of Socialism; but that it will finally support the revolutionai'y proletariat only 


after the proletariat has taken the political power, after it has done away with 
the owners of the large estates and the capitalists, after the oppressed masses 
are able to see in practice that they have an organized leader and helper suf- 
ficiently powerful and firm to support and to guide, to show the right way. 

The "middle peasantry," in the economic sense, consists of small landowners 
who possess, according to the right of ownership or rent, portions of land, which, 
although small, nevertheless may: 1) usually yield under capitalist rule not only 
scanty provision for the fjiniily and the needs of the farming, but also the possibil- 
ity of accinnulating a certain surplus, which, at least in the best years, could be 
transformed into capital; and 2) necessitate the employment of (for instance, in 
a family of two or three members) wage labor. As a concrete example of the 
middle peasantry in an advanced capitalist country, we may take the situation in 
Germany, where, according to the registration of ]917, there was a group tilling 
farms from live to ten acres, and in these farms the number of hired agricultural 
laborers made up about a third of the whole number of farms in this group.' In 
France, the country of a greater development of siiecial cultures, for instance, 
the vineyards, requiring special treatment and care, the corresponding group 
employs wage labor probably in a somewhat larger portion. 

The revolutionary proletariat can not make it its aim, at least for the nearest 
future and for the beginning of the period of the proletarian dictatorship, to win 
this class over to its side. The proletariat will have to content itself with neu- 
tralizing this class, i. e., with making it take a neutral position in the struggle 
between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie. The vacillation of this class is 
unavoidable, and in the beginning of the new epoch its predominating tendency 
in the advanced capitalist countries will be in favor of the bourgeoisie, for the 
ideas and sentiments of private property are characteristic of the possessors. The 
victorious proletariat will immediately improve the lot of this class by abolishing 
the system of rent and mortgage, by the introduction of machinery and electrical 
appliances into agriculture. The proletarian state power cannot at once abolish 
private property in most of the capitalist countries, but must do away with all 
duties and levies imposed upon this class of people by the landlords ; it will also 
secure to the small and middle peasantry the ownership of their land holding-s 
and enlarge them, putting the peasants in possession of the land they used to rent 
abolition of rents). 

The combination of such measures with a relentless struggle against the bour- 
geoisie guarantees the full success of the neutralization policy. The transition to 
collective agriculture must be managed with much circumspection and step by 
step, and the proletarian state power must proceed by the force of example without 
any violence toward the middle peasantry. 

5. The landed peasants or farmei-s ( Grossbauern ) ) are capitalists in agricul- 
ture, managing their lands usually with several hired laborers. They are con- 
nected with the "peasantry" only by their rather low standard of culture, their 
way of living, the personal manual work of their land. This is the most nu- 
merous element of the bourgeois class, and the decided enemy of the revolu- 
tionary proletariat. The chief attention of the Communist Party in the rural 
districts must be given to the struggle against this element, to 'the liberation 
of the laboring and exploited majority of the rural population from the moral 
and political influence of these exploiters. 

After the victory of the proletariat in the towns, this class will inevitably 
oppose it by all means, from sabotage to open armed counter-revolutionary 
resistance. The revolutionary proletariat must, therefore, immediately begin 
to prepare the necessary force for the disarmament of every single man of this 
class, and together with the overthrow of the capitalists in industry, the pro- 
letariat must deal a relentless, crushing blow to this class. To that end it must 
arm the rural proletariat and organize Soviets in the country, with no room 
for exploiters, and a preponderant place must be reserved to the proletarians 
and the semi-proletarians. 

But the expropriation even of the landed peasants can by no means be an 
immediate object of the victorious proletariat, considering the lack of material, 
particularly of technical material, and further of the social conditions necessary 
for the socialization of such lands. In some probably exceptional cases parts 

^ These are the exact figures: number of farms .5 — 10 acres 552,798 (out of 5,736,082) : 
tney possess in all sorts of hired worl^ers, 487,704 — the number of worlcers with their 
families (Familienangehoeri'j-e) being 2,013,6.3.3. In Austria, according to the census of 
1910, there were 383,351 farms in this group. 126,136 of them employing hired labor : 
146,044 hired worker.s, 1,215,969 workers with their families. The total number of 
farms in Austria amounts to 2,856,349. 


of their estates will be confiscated if they are leased in small parcels, or if they 
are specially needed by the small-peasant iX)pulation. A free use must be also 
secured to this population, on definite terms, of a part of the agricultural 
machinery of the lauded peasants, etc. As a general rule, however, the state 
power must leave the peasants in possession of their land, confiscating it only 
in case of resistance to the government of the laboring and exploited peasants. 
The experience of the Russian proletarian revolution, whose struggle against the 
landed peasants became very complicated and prolonged owing to a number of 
particular circumstances, nevertheless shows that this class has been at last 
taught what it costs to make the slightest attempt at resistance, and is now 
quite willing to serve loyally the aims of the proletarian state. It begins even 
to be penetrated, although very slowly, by a respect for the government which 
protects every worker and deals relentlessly vi'ith the idle rich. 

The specific conditions which complicated and prolonged the struggle of the 
Russian proletariat against the landed peasantry after the overthrow of the 
bourgeoisie, consist mainly in the fact that after the coup d'etat of October 25 and 
November 7, 1917, the Russian revolution traversed a stage of "general demo- 
cratic," actually bourgeois democratic, struggle of the peasantry as a whole 
against the landowners, and there were further the low standard of living and 
scarcity of the urban proletariat, and, finally, the enormous distances and ex- 
ceedingly bad transport conditions. Insofar as these adverse conditions do not 
exist in the advanced countries, the revolutionary proletariat in Europe and 
America must prepare with much more energy and carry out a much more rapid 
and complete victory over the resistance of the landed peasantry, depriving it 
of all possibility of resistance. This is of the utmost importance, considering that 
until a complete, absolute victory is won, the proletarian state power cannot be 
regarded as secure and capable of resisting its enemies. 

6. The revolutionary proletariat must proceed to an immediate and uncondi- 
tional confi.scation of the estates of the landowners and big landlords, that is, 
of all those who systematically euiploy wage labor, directly or through their 
tenants, who exploit all the small (and not infrequently also the middle) 
peasantry in their neighborhood, and who do not do any actual manual work. 
To this element belong the majority of the descendants of the feudal lords 
(the nobility of Russia, Germany, and Hungary, the restored seigneurs of 
France, the Lords in England, the former slave owners in America), or financial 
magnates who have become particularly rich, or a mixture of those two classes 
of exploiters and idlers. 

No propaganda can be admitted in the ranks of the Communist parties in 
favor of an indemnity to be paid to the owners of large estates for their 
expropriation. In the present conditions prevailing in Europe and America 
this would mean treason to Socialism and the imposition of a new tax on the 
laboring and exploited masses, who have already suffered from the war, which 
has increased the number of millionaires and has mulliplied their wealth. 

In the advanced capitalist countries the Communist International considers 
that it should be a prevailing practice to preserve the lai-ge agricultural estab- 
lishments and manage them on the lines of the "Soviet farms" in Riissia.^ In 
regard to the management of the estates confiscated by the victorious prole- 
tariat from the owners of large landed property — the prevailing practice in 
Russia — the cause of economic backwardness was the partition of this landed 
property for the benefit of the peasantry, and in comparatively rare exceptions 
was there a preservation of the so-called "Soviet farm." managed by the prole- 
tarian state at its expense, and transforming the former wage laborers into 
workers employed by the state, and into members of the Soviets managing these 

The preservation of large landholdings serves best the interests of the revo- 
lutionary elements of the population, namely, the landless agricultural workers 
and semi-pi'oletarian small landholders, who get their livelihood mainly by 
working on the large estates. IJesides, the nationalization of large landholdings 
makes the urban population, at least in part, less dependent on the peasantry 
for their food. 

In those places, however, where relics of the feudal system still prevail, 
where "serfdom" and the system of giving half of the products to the peasants 
prevails and where a part of the soil belongs to the large estates the landlord 
privileges give rise to special forms of exploitation. 

2 It is also advisable to encourage collective establishments (Comnuines). 


In countries where large landlioklings are insignificant in number, while a 
great number of small tenants are in search of land, the distribution of the 
large holdings can prove a sure means of winning the peasantry for the revo- 
lution, while the preservation of the large estates can be of no value for the 
provisioning of the towns. The first and most important task of the proletarian 
state is to secure a lasting victory. The proletariat must put up with a tempo- 
rary decline of production so long as it makes for the success of the revolution. 
Only by persuading the middle peasantry to maintain a neutral attitude, and 
by gaining the support of a large part, if not the whole, of the small ijeas- 
antry, can the lasting maintenance of the proletarian power be secured. 

At any rate, where the land of the large owners is being distributed, the 
interests of the agricultural proletariat must be of primary consideration. 

The implements of large estates must be converted into state property abso- 
lutely intact, but on the unfailing condition that these implements be put at 
the disposal of the small peasants gratis, subject to conditions worked out by 
the proletarian state. 

If just at first, after the proletarian coup de'etat, the Immediate confiscation 
of the big estates becomes absolutely necessary, and moreover, also the banish- 
ment or internment of all landowners as leaders of the counter-revolution, and 
relentless oppressors of the whole rural population, the proletarian state, in 
proportion to its consolidation not only in the towns but in the country as well, 
must systematically strive to take advantage of all the forces of this class, of 
all those who possess valuable experience, learning, organizing talent, and must 
use them (under special control of the most reliable Communist workers) to 
organize large agriculture on Socialist principles. 

7. The victory of Socialism over capitalism, the consolidation of Socialism, will 
be definitely established at the time that the proletarian state power, after hav- 
ing finally subdued all resistance of the exploiters and secured for itself com- 
plete and absolute submission, will reorganize the whole industry on the base of 
wholesale collective production and a nev/ technical basis (founded on the elec- 
trification of agriculture). This alone will afford a possibility of such radical 
help in the technical and the social sense, accorded by the town to the backward 
and dispersed country, that this help will create the material base for an enor- 
mous increase in the productivity of agricultural and general farming work, and 
will induce the small farmers by force of example and for their own benefit to 
change to large, collective machine agriculture. 

Most particularl.v in the rural districts real possibility of successful struggle 
for Socialism requires, in the first place, that all Communist parties inculcate in 
the industrial proletariat the necessity of sacrifice on its part, and readiness to 
sacrifice it.self for the overthrow of the bourgeoisie, and that the consolidation of 
the proletariat be based on the proletariat's knowing how to organize and to lead 
the woi-king and exploited masses, and on the vanguard's being ready for the 
greatest sacrifices and heroism. In the second place, possibility of success re- 
quires that the laboring and most exploited masses in the country experience 
immediate and great improvement in their position caused by the victory of the 
proletariat and by the defeat of the exploiters. Unless this is done, the indus- 
trial proletariat cannot depend on the support of the rural districts, and cannot 
secure the provisioning of the town with foodstuffs. 

8. The enormous ditficulty of organization and education for the revolutionary 
struggle of the agrarian laboring masses placed by capitalism in a condition of 
particular oppression, disper.sion, and often a mediaeval dependence require from 
the Communist parties special care for the strike movement in the rural dis- 
tricts. It requires enforced support and wide development of mass strikes of the 
agrarian proletarians and semiproletarians. The experience of the Russian rev- 
olutions of 1905 and 1917, confirmed and enlarged now by the experience of Ger- 
many and other advanced countries, shows that only the development of mass- 
strike struggle (under certain conditions the small peasants are also to be drawn 
into these strikes) will shake the inactivity of the country population, arouse 
in them a class consciousness and the consciousness of the necessity of class 
organization in the exploited masses in the country, and show them the obvious 
practical use of their joining the town workers. From this standpoint the pro- 
motion or Unions of Agricultural "Workers, the co-operation of Communists in 
the country, and woodworkers' organizations are of great importance. The 
Communists must likewise support the co-operative organizations formed by the 
exploited agricultural population closely connected with the revolutionary labor 
movement. A vigorous agitation is likewise to be carried on among the small 


The Congress of the Communist International denounces as traitors those 
Socialists — unfortunately there are such not only in the yellow Second Interna- 
tional, but also among the three most important European parties, which have 
left the Second International — who are not only indifferent toward the strike 
struggle in the rural districts, but oppose it (as does Kautsky) on the ground 
that it might cause a falling-off of the production of foodstuffs. No programmes 
and no solemn declarations have any value if the fact is not in evidence, testified 
to by actual deeds, that the Communists and labor leaders know how to put the 
development of the proletarian revolution and its victory above everything else 
and are ready to make the utmost sacrifices for the sake of this victory. Unless 
this is a fact, there is no escape, no barrier against starvation, dissolution, and 
new imperialistic wars. 

The Communist parties must make all efforts possible to start as soon as pos- 
sible setting up Soviets in the country, and these Soviets must be chiefly com- 
posed of hired laborers and semi-proletarians. Only in connection with the 
mass-strike struggle of the most oppressed class will the Soviets be able to serve 
fully their ends, and become sufficiently firm to dominate (and further on to 
include in their ranks) the small peasants. But if the strike struggle is not yet 
developed, and the ability to organize the agrarian proletariat is weak because 
of the strone: oppression by the landowners and the landed peasants, and also 
because of the want of support from the industrial workers and their unions, 
the organization of the Soviets in the rural districts will require long prepara- 
tion by means of creating small Communist centers, of intensive propaganda, ex- 
pounding in a most popular form the demands of the Communists, and illustrat- 
ing the reasons of these demands by specially convincing cases of exploitation, 
and pressure by systematic excursions of industrial workers into the country, etc. 

Exhibit No. 13 

[Source: Excerpts from Lenin On Organization, published by Daily Worl^er Publislilng 

Company, 1113 W. Washington Blvd., Chicago. Illinois: 1926. Pages G4, 74, 111- 

* * * * * * * 

On the other hand, the organizations of revolutionaries must be comprised 
first and foremost of people whose profession consists of being revolutionaries 
(that is why I speak of organizations of revolutionaries, meaning revolutionary 
Social Democrats). In face of this common characteristic the members of such 
an organization must ahdvdon all distincUo'n between workers and intellectuals, 
let alone distinctions between trades and professions. Such an organization must 
of necessity be not too extensive and as conspiratorial as possible. 


I might go on analyzing the statutes, but I think that what has been said will 
suflSce. A small tight kernel, consisting of reliable, experienced and steeled 
workers, with responsible agents in the chief districts and connected by all the 
rules of strict conspiracy with the organizations of revolutionaries, can, with 
the wide support of the masses and without any formulation, fully perform all 
the functions belonging to a trade union organization, and perform them 
moreover in the manner desii-ed by Social Democrats. 



General Type of Organization 

(From "A Letter to a Comrade on Our Problems of Organization," 

September, 1902) 

. . . Now a word about the factory circles. They are of extreme im- 
portance to us : the main strength of our movement lies in the workers' organi- 
zations in the large factories. For in the large factories (and works) are 
concentrated that section of the worlving class which is not only predominant 
in numbers, but still more predominant in influence, development and fighting 
capacity. Every factory must be our stronghold. And that means that every 
"factory" workers' organization must be as conspiratorial internally and as 
"ramified" externally, and that its feelers be stretched as far and widespread 
as any revolutionary organization. I emphasize that hero again the center, 


the leader, the "boss" nutst be .1 group of worker revolutionaries. We must 
break completely with the traditional type of purely labor or purely trade union 
oi-ganizatiou, not excludhiff the "factory" circles. The factory si'oup, or the 
factory (works) committee (to distinguish it from other groups of which there 
should be a great number) must consist of a very small number of revolu- 
tionaries who will take their instructions and receive their authority to carry 
on Social Democratic work in the factory, direetlij from the committee. Kvery 
member of the factory committee must regard himself as an agent of the com- 
mittee, obliged to subordinate himself to the orders of the committee and to 
adhere to all the 'iaws and customs" of that "army on active service" which 
he has joined and which in time of war he has no right to abandon without the 
consent of his superior. The composition of the factory committee is therefore 
a matter of extreme importance. One of the main cares of the committee 
should be that the sub-committee be properly organized. I inuigine the thing 
somewhat as follows: the committee charges certain of its members (plus, let 
us say, certain workers who for some reason or other cannot join the committee, 
)iut who may be very useful on account of their experience, knowledge of people, 
good sense and connections) to organize factory sub-committees everywhere. 
Ihe commission will consult with the district delegates, arrange meetings, care- 
fully examine the candidates for membership of the factory sub-committees, 
submit them to close cross-examination, if possible subject them to a test, en- 
deavoring themselves to interview and directly examine as large a numher as 
possible of candidates to the sub-committee of the factory in question and will 
finally submit a certain list of members for each factory group for the approval 
of the committee, or propose that authority be given to a certain worker to set 
up. indicate, or select a complete sub-committee. The committee will itself 
(letermine which of these agents is to maintain contact with it and how the 
contact ivS to be maintained (as a rule, through the district delegates, but this 
rule may be subject to additions and amendments). In view of the great im- 
portance of these factory sub-committees, we must see to it that wherever pos- 
sible each sub-committee should be in possession of an address to which to 
direct its communications to the C. O. (16) and have a depot for its contacts 
in some safe place (i. e., that the information required for the immediate 
reformation of a factory committee in the event of the arrest of its members 
should be transmitted as frequently and as abundantly as possible to the party 
centre, there to be kept in a safe place where the Russian gendarmes are unable 
to get at it). It will, of course, be understood that the transmission of 
addresses is to be determined by the committee according to its own discretion 
and the facts at its disposal, and not in accordance with some non-existent 
"democratic" right. Finally, it is perhaps not superfluous to mention that it 
might sometimes he more convenient in place of a factory sub-committee con- 
sisting of several members to confine itself to the appointment of an agent of 
the committee (and his candidate or substitute). As soon as the factory 
sub-committee has been formed it should proceed to organize a number of fac- 
tory groups and circles with functions and with varying degrees of 
conspiratorialness and definition of organization : such as, for instance, circles 
for distributing and broadcasting literature (this is one of the most important 
functions ; it must be so organized as to provide us with a real postal service 
of our own ; not only the methods of distributing literature but also of deliver- 
ing it in the homes must be carefully studied and tested, and the home of 
every worker and the way to it must be well learned) ; circles for reading 
illegal literature ; groups for keeping a watch on spies ; ^ circles for the economic 
struggle, groups of agitators and propagandists who know how to start and to 
carry specific leadership of the trade union movement and on long conversations 
in a legal manner (on the subject of machinery, inspectors, etc.), and so be 
able to speak safely in public, to examine people and feel how the land lies." 
The factory sub-committee should endeavor to embrace the whole factory and the 
largest possible number of the workers in a network of circles of all kinds (or 
agents). The success of the activities of the .sub-committee should be measured 

1 We must get tlie workers to understand that while the killins of spies, pro- 
vocateurs and traitors ma.v sometimes, of course, be absolutely unavoidable, it is highly 
undesirable and mistaken to make a system of it, and that our endeavor should be to 
create an organization which will be able to render spies innocuous by exposing them 
and tracking them down. To root out spies altogether is impossible, but to create an 
organization which will track them out and educate the working class masses is both 
possible and necessarii. 

2 We also need fighting groups, in which workers who have had military training or 
who are particularly muscular and agile should be enrolled, to be used in tlie event of 
demonstrations, prison, releases, etc. 


by the multiplicity of circles, the possibility of travelling propagandists getting^ 
into contact with them, and above all, by the correctness and regularity of the 
work done in the distribution of literature and the reception of information and 

In my opinion, the general type of organization should be as follows: the 
head of the whole local movement and of all the local Social Democratic 
activities should be the conmiittee. From it should proceed the institutions 
and branch departments subordinated to it, such as, firstly, the network of 
executive agents embracing (as far as possible) the whole working class mass 
and organized in the form of district groups and factory (works) sub-corn- 
mitties. In times of peace this network will be engaged in distributing litera- 
ture, leaflets, proclamations and the conspiratorial communications of the 
committee ; in time of war it will organize demonstrations and similar collec- 
tive activities. Secondly, there will proceed from the committee circles and 
groups of all kinds necessary for serving the whole movement (propaganda, 
transport, conspiratorial function, etc.). Every group, circle, sub-committee, 
etc., must be on the footing of a committee or branch department of the 
committee. Certain of them may express a direct wish to join the Rus.sian 
Social Democratic Labor Party (17), and, provided that the committee give\s 
its approval, will do so, and (at the request of, or in agreement with, the 
committee) will assume definite functions, will undertake to obey all the 
instructions of the Party organs, will be endowed with the rights enjoyed by 
every member of the Party, may be regarded as immediate candidates for 
membership of the committee, etc. Others will not join the Russian Social 
Democratic Labor Party, but will be regarded as circles formed by Party mem- 
bers or associated with some or other Party group, etc. 

In all their internal affairs the members of all these circles are, of course, 
equal among themselves, just as the members of a committee are equal among 
themselves. The sole exception will be that the right of personal contact with 
the local committee (as well as with the C. C. and the C. O. ) will be possessed 
only by the person (or persons) appointed for that purpose by the committee. 
In all other respects, this person will be on an equality with the rest, who 
will also have the right of addressing themselves (but not personally) to the 
local committee and to the C. C. and the C. O. The exception indicated there- 
fore will not be an infringement of equality, but only an absolutely essential 
concession to the demands of conspiracy. A member of a committee who fails 
to transmit to the committee, the C. C. or the C. O:, the communications of 
"his" group will be guilty of a direct infringement of his Party duties. Fur- 
thermore, the degree of conspiratorialness and definition of organization of the 
various circles will depend upon the character of their functions, and the 
organizations will therefore be of the most varied character (from the most 
"strict", narrow and closed type of organization to the "loosest," widest, oi>en 
and indefinite type). For instance, the distributing groups require the utmost 
conspiratorialness and nnlitary discipline. The propagandist groups need to be 
equally conspiratorial, but with a far less degree of military discipline. Work- 
ers' groups for reading legal literature, or for discussions on trade union needs 
and problems require to be still less conspiratorial and so on. The distributing 
groups should belong to the R. S. D. L. P. and be acquainted with a certain 
number of its members and responsible persons. A group for studying trade 
union conditions of labor and for drawing up trade union demands is not obliged 
to belong to the R. S. D. L. P. A group of students, officers or clerks engaged 
in self-education with the cooperation of one or two members of the Party, 
should sometimes even not be acquainted with the fact that they belong to the 
Party, etc. But in one respect we must ahsoltdcly demand the maximum dcfi- 
niteness in every branch of groups, namely, that each Party member working 
in these groups is formally responsible for the conduct of their affairs and is 
obliged to take ei-ery measure in order that the composition of each of 
groups, the whole mechani.-nn of its work and the character of that work should 
be knoivn to the C. C. and the C. O. That is necessary not only in order that 
the centres may have a complete picture of the whole movement, but that the 
selection for various Party posts may be made from the widest possible circle of 
people, that (through the intermediary of the centre) each group may serve as a 
les-son for all the groups of a similar character in Russia, and that adequate 
warning may be given in the event of the appearance of provocateurs or doubtful 
persons — in a word, it is necessary from every point of view. 

How is this to be done? By regular reports to the committee, the transmis- 
sion of as large a number of as much of the contents as possible of these reports 


1() the C. O. by arranging that members of the C. C. and the local committee 
should visit the circles, and, tinally. that the contacts with the circles, i. e. the 
names and addresses of several members of each circle, should be transmitted 
for safe-keeping (and to the Party bureaus of the C. O. and the C. C). Only 
when reports are regularly made and contacts transmitted may it be said that 
a Party member participating in a circle is fulfilling his duties; only when the 
Party as a whole is in a position to leant from every circle which; is carrying 
(in practical work, will arrests have lost their terror; for if contacts are main- 
tained with the various circles it will always be easy for a delegate of the C. C. 
to find a substitute iiuDiediateUj and liave the work renewed. The arrest of a 
committee will then not destroy the whole machine, but only remove the leaders, 
to replace whom there will always be candidates ready. And let it not be said 
that the communication of reports and contacts are impossible under conspira- 
torial conditions: one has only to desire it and it is always, and icill always, 
be possible to hand over (or transmit) reports and contacts as long as we have 
committees, a C. C. and a C. O. 

We have arrived at a very important principle of all Party organization and 
all Party activity: while as far as the intellectual and practical leadership of 
the movement and the revolutionary struggle of the proletariat is concerned, 
the greatest possible decentralization is required, as far as keeping the Party 
centre (and therefore the Party as a whole), informed regarding the movement 
and as far as responsibility to the Party is concerned, the greatest possible de- 
centralization is required. The leadership of the movement should be entrusted 
to the smallest possible number of uniform groups of professional revolution- 
aries who have been trained in the school of experience. The greatest possible 
number of diverse and heterogeneous groups of every section of the proletariat 
(and other of the population) should take part in the movement. The 
Party centre must always have before it not only exact information regarding 
the activities of each of" the groups, but also the fullest possible facts regard- 
ing its composition. The leadership of the movement must be centralized. 
We must also, (and for that very reason, for without information we cannot 
have decentralization) as far as possible, decentralization responsibility to the 
Party on the part of every individual member and every participant in the 
work and of every circle belonging to, or associating itself with, the Party. 
This decentralization is an essential condition of revolutionary centralization 
and an essential corrective to it. When centralization has been fully estab- 
lished and we have a C. O. and a C. C, it will be possible for every group, 
however small, to communicate with them — and not only will it be able to 
communicate with them, but regularity of comnuinication will be established 
by years of experience— and the possibility of grievous consequences resulting 
from the chance unfortunate composition of a local committee will be removed. 
Now, when we are seriously endeavoring to effect real unity in the Party and 
to create a real leading centre, we must particularly bear in mind that the 
centre will be impotent if we do not introduce the maximnm of decentraliza- 
tion both as far as responsibility to the centre and keeping it informed of all 
the wheels and inner wheels of the Party machine are concerned. Thisi de- 
centralization is only the reverse side of the division of labor which is generally 
recognized to be one of the most urgent practical needs of our movement. The 
official recognition of a given organization as the leading organization, the setting 
up of a formal C. C. is not enough to make our movement a real united move- 
ment, or to create a strong fighting Party if the Party centre is oit off from 
direct practical work by the local committees of the old type, i. e. by such as are, 
on the one hand, made up of a great number of persons each of which carries 
on every kind of work, does not devote himself to certain definite functions, is not 
responsible for some special duty, never carries a well-considered and well- 
prepared piece of work to an end, and spends an enormous amount of time and 
energy in simply running to and fro — and, on the other hand, embrace a great 
mass of student and worker.s' circles, half of which are altogether unknown to the 
committee, and the other half are huge unspecialized, accumulating no profes- 
sional experience, nor making use of the experience of others, and, like the 
committee itself, engaged in endless conferences about everything in general, 
in elections and in the drawing up of statutes. In order that the centre may be 
able to work properly, the local committees must be re-formed; they must become 
specialized and "business-like" organizations which will be capable of achieving 
real "improvements" in some one or other practical .sphere. In order that the 
centre should do more than discuss, argue and wrangle (as has been the case 
hitherto) but really conduct the orchestra, it is necessary that it should know 


who is playing wliicli fiddle and where; who has learnt, or is learning to play 
a certain instrument, and how and where ; who is playing a false note ( that 
is, when the music happens to go wrong) and where and why, and who must 
be transferred, and where to in order that the discord be corrected, etc. Let 
it be said openly, at the present moment we either know nothing about the 
real internal work of a given committee, except from its proclamations and gen- 
eral correspondence, or we know about it from friends or personal acquaintances. 
It is ridiculous to think that this is good enough for a huge Party which is capable 
of leading the Russian working class movement and which is preparing itself 
for an attack upon the autocracy. The number of members of the committees 
must be cut down ; each of them, wherever possible, must be entrusted with a 
definite special and responsible function, for which it must account ; a small 
special directing centre must be set up ; a network of executive agents must be 
developed to connect the committee with every large factory and works, to conduct 
the regular distribution of literature and to supply the centre with an exact 
picture of how the distribution is being carried out and of the whole mechanism 
of the work ; and finally, numerous groups and circles must be formed which 
will take various functions upon themselves or unite persons who desire to 
work with the Social Democratic Party, to help it and to become Social Demo- 
crats, and which will keep the committee and the centre constantly informed of the 
activities (and the composition) of the circles. That is the way in which the St. 
Petersburg, and all the other comimttees of the Party must be reorganized ; and 
that is why the question of the statutes is of such little importance. 


... I now pass to the question of the propagandist groups. To organize such 
in every district is hardly possible and hardly desirable, in view of our poverty of 
propagandists. Propaganda should be carried on by the Committee as a whole 
and must be strictly centralized, and my idea of the matter is therefore as fol- 
lows : the Committee charges certain of its members to organize a propagandist 
group (which will act as a branch department of the Committee or be one of the 
Committee institution's). This group, making conspiratorial use of the services 
of the district groups, will conduct propaganda throughout the tvhole town, and 
in every locality "within the competence" of the Committee. If necessary, this 
group may set up a sub-group, and, so to speak, transfer certain of its functions, 
but only with the sanction of the Connnittee, and the Committee shall always 
and unconditionally possess the right of detailing its delegate to each group, 
sub-group, or circle which has any contact at all with the movement. . . 

By the way, while on the subject of propagandists, I should like to say a few 
words in criticism of the usual practice of ovcrloadinff this profession with 
people of little capacity for it and thus lowering the level of propaganda. 
Almost every student without any selection is regarded as a propagandist, and 
the whole of our youth demand that they should "be given circles." This 
tendency must be fought, because it is doing a lot of harm. As a matter of 
fact, capable propagandists well-grouni!ed and trained in theory are very rare 
(to become such a propagandist requires a fair amount of training and accu- 
inulation of experience) ; they must therefore be specialized, we must put them 
wholly on this work and take great care of them. We must arrange several 
lectures a week for them; we nuist be able when necessary to send them to 
other towns, and, in general, arrange for various towns to be toured by capable 
propagandists. The mass of young beginners should rather be put on practical 
jobs; these are rather neglected in comparison with the amount of circle attend- 
ing which is done by the students and which is optimistically called "propa- 
ganda." Of course, serious practice jobs also require considerable training, 
but nevertheless, work in this sphere can more easily be found even for 
"novices". . . 


In the same way, and after the type of branch department of the Committee 
or Connnittee institution, all the other groups serving the movement should be 
organized — the university students and high school students groups, the groups, 
let us say, for assisting government officials, transport groups, printing groups, 
passport groups, groups for arranging conspiratorial meeting places, groups for 
tracking spys, military groups, groups for procuring arms, organization groups, 
such as for running income producing enterprises, etc. The whole art of con- 
spiratorial organization consists in making use of everything and everybody and 


finding work for everybody, at the same time retaining the leadership of the 
whole movement, not by force, but by virtue of authority, energy, greater experi- 
ence, greater versatility and greater talent. We say this for the sake of those 
who usually object that too strict centralization, which is absolutely impossible 
to any large extent and which is even directly harmful to revolutionary work 
carried on under an autocratic government. Statutes gives us no guarantee ; 
that can be provided only by measures of "fraternal co-operation," beginning 
with the resolutions of each and every sub-group, their appeals to the C. O. and 
the C. C. and ending (if the worst comes to the worst tvith the overthrow of 
incapable authorities. The Committee should try to achieve the greatest possible 
division of labor, remembering that the various kinds of revolutionary work 
demand various capacities and that a person who is absolutely useless as an 
organizer may be invaluable as an agitator, or that a person who does not 
possess the endurance demanded by conspiratorial work may be an excellent 
propagandist and so on. . . 

Exhibit No. 14 

[Source: Programme of the World Revolution, by N. Bucharin ; a booklet published by 
the Contemporary Publishing Association, New York : 1920] 


(By N. Bucharin) 

Contemporary Publishing Association, New York. 1920 

chapter i 

The Reign of Capital, the Working Class, and the Poorer Elements of the 

Village Population 

In all countries, except in Russia, Capital is predominant. Whatever State 
one takes, whether semi-despotic Prussia, or Republican France, or so-called 
democratic America, everywhere power is wholly concentrated in the hands of 
big capital. A small group of people, landowners, manufacturers and the 
richest bankers, hold millions and hundreds of millions of town workers and 
rural poor in slavery bondage, compelling them to toil, sweating them and 
throwing them on the street as soon as they become useless and worn out and 
incapable of being a source of further profit to Lord Capital. 

This terrible power of the bankers and manufacturers over millions of toilers 
is given to them by wealth. Why does a poor man who is thrown on the streets 
have to starve to death? Because he possesses nothing but a pair of hands 
which he can sell to the capitalist should the capitalist want them. How is it 
that a rich banker or business man can do nothing, and yet lead an easy life 
free of care, getting a solid income and taking in profit daily, hourly, and 
even by the minute? Because he possesses not only a pair of hands, but also 
those means of production without which work is impossible nowadays, fac- 
tories, land, machines, railroads, mines, ships and steamers, and all kinds of 
apparatus and instruments. All over the world, except in present-day Russia, 
this wealth accumulated by man belongs only to capitalist and landowners 
who have also become capitalists. And it is no wonder that in such a state 
of affairs a group of men, having in their hands all that is indispensable, the 
most necessary things, dominate the rest who possess nothing. Let us take the 
instance of a poor man from the country coming to town to seek work. Who 
does he go to? To the proprietor, the man who owns a factory or works. And 
this snme proprietor becomes the complete master of the man's life. If his, 
the master's loyal servants, directors and bookkeepers, have calculated that it 
is possible to squeeze more profits out of fresh workers than out of the old ones, 
then he "gives a job." If not, he tells him to "pass along." At the factory 
the capitalist is monarch of all he surveys. He is obeyed by all, and hi."? 
directions are implicitly carried out. The factory is extended or reduced at 
his will. At his command, through foremen and managers, workmen are em- 
ployed or dismissed. He decides how long they are to work and what pay 
they are to get. And all this happens because the factory is his factory, the 
works his works, they belong to him, are his private property. It is this right 


of private property over the means of production that is the cause of the 
terrible power trhich is in the hands of capital. 

The same thing Iwkls good with regard to land. Take the freest and the 
most democratic country — the United States. Thousands of workers cultivate 
land that does not belong to them, land owned by landowning capitalists. Here 
everything is organized on the plan of a large factory ; there are tens and 
hundreds of electric ploughs, reaping machines, reaping and sheaf-binding 
machines, at which hired slaves toil from dawn till night. And just as at the 
factory, they work not for themselves, but for a master. This is because land 
itself as well as the seeds and machines, in a word, everything, except the 
working hands, is the private property of the capitalist master. He is autocrat 
here. He commands and conducts the business in such a way as to convert 
the very sweat and blood into shining yellow metal. The workmen, grumbling 
sometimes, obey, and go on making money for the master because he possesses 
everything, while the worker, the poor agricultural laborer, possesses nothing. 

But sometimes It so happens that the landowner does not hire laborers, but 
lets his land on lease. Here in Russia, for instance, the poor peasantry, holding 
small allotments hardly enough to pasture a hen, were obliged to rent land 
from the landowners. They cultivate it with their own horses, ploughs and 
harrows. But even here they were mercilessly fleeced. The greater the peas- 
ant's need for land, the greater was the rent charged by the landowners, thus 
holding the poor peasant in real bondage. What enabled him to do that? The 
fact that the land was his, the landowner's land ; the fact that the laud con- 
stituted the private property of the landoimiing class. 

Capitalist society is divided into two classes : those who work a great deal 
and feed scantily, and those who work little or not at all, but eat well and 
plentifully. That is not at all in accordance with the Scriptures, where it says: 
"He that does not work, neither shall he eat." This circumstance, however, 
does not prevent the priests of all faiths and tongues from lauding the capitalist 
order; for these priests everywhere (except in Soviet Republic) are maintained 
by increment derived from private or church property. 

Another question now arises. How is it possible for a group of parasites to 
retain private ownership over the means of labor, so indispensable to all? How 
has it come about that private ownership by the idle classes is maintained to 
the present day? Where does the reason lie? 

The reason lies in the perfect organization of the enemies of the laboring 
class. To-day there does not exist a single capitalist country where the capital- 
ists act individually. On the contrary, each one of them is infallibly a member 
of some economic organization. And it is these economic unions that hold every- 
thing in their hands, having tens of thoiisands of faithful agents to serve them, 
not out of fear, but as a matter of conscience. The entire economic life of every 
capitalist country is at the complete disposal of special economic organizations ; 
syndicates, trusts, and unions of many banking concerns. TTiese combines own 
and direct everything. 

The most important industrial and financial combine is the Bourgeois State. 
This combine holds in its hands the reins of government and power. Here 
everything Is weighed and measured, everything is premeditated and arranged 
in such a manner as to crush instantly any attempt at rebellion on the part 
of the working class against the domination of capital. The State has at its 
disposal forces (such as spies, police, judges, executioners, and trained soldiers, 
who have become soulless machines), as well as mental influences v.^hich grad- 
ually pervert the workers and poorer elements of society, imbuing them with 
fallacious ideas. For this purpose the bourgeois State utilizes schools and 
Church, aided by the capitalist press. It is a known fact that pig-breeders can 
breed such stock as are incapable of moving owing to the vast accumulation 
of fat ; but such pigs are extremely suitable for slaughter. They are bred 
artificially on special fattening food. The bourgeoisie deals witli the working 
class in exactly the same way. It is true it gives them little enough substantial 
food — not enough to get fat on. But day by day it offers to the workers a 
specially-prepared mental food which fattens their brains and make them 
incapable of thought. The bourgeoisie wants to turn the woi'king class into a 
herd of swine, docile and fit for slaughter, not capable of thinking and ever 
subservient. This is the reason why, with the help of schools and the Church, 
the bourgeoisie tries to instill into the minds of children the idea that it is 
necessary to obey the Authorities, as they hold their power from heaven (and 
the Bolsheviks, instead of prayers, have drawn on themselves the curses of the 
Church, because they have refused to grant any State subsidies 1o these cas- 


socked frauds). This is also the reason why the bourgeoisie is so anxious to 
circulate its lying press far and wide. 

The poiverfiil organization of the bourgeois class enables them to retain pri- 
vate property. TTie rich are few in number, but they are surrounded by a large 
number of faithful, devoted and handsomely-paid servants : ministers, directors 
of works, directors of banks, and so on; these latter are again surrounded by 
a still greater number of retainers who get paid less, but who are entirely de- 
pendent on them, and are educated along the same lines. They are themselves 
on the look-out for such posts, should they be lucky enough to attain them. 
These again are followed by minor officials, agents of capital, etc., etc. It is 
just as the Russian nursery tale has it : "Grandad holds on to the turnip, 
grandma on to grandad, grandchild on to grandma," and so on ; in short they 
follow one another in an interminable chain united by the general organization 
of the bourgeois State and other industrial combines. These organizations cover 
all countries with a net out of which the working class struggles in vain to 
get free. Every capitalist State is in reality one vast economic union. The 
workers toil — the masters enjoy themselves. The workers carry out orders — 
the masters lord it over them. The workers are deceived — the masters deceive 
them. Such is the state of things called capitalistic, which the capitalists and 
their servants — the priests, intellectual classes, mensheviks, socialist revolu- 
tionaries, and the rest of that fraternity, are inviting the workers and peasants 
to obey. 

chapter ii 

Plundering Wars, the Oppeession of the Working Classes, and the 
Beginning of the Fall of Capitalism 

In every capitalist country small capital has practically vanished ; of late it 
has been eaten up by the big sharks of capitalism. At first, a struggle went 
on between the individual capitalist for customers ; at the present time when 
there are only a few of them left (as the small fry is absolutely ruined), the 
remaining ones have united, organized, and have it their own way in their 
country, just as in olden times the barons had full power over their own 
domains ; a few American bankers own the whole of America, just as formerly 
a single capitalist owned his factory. A few French usurers have subjugated 
the whole French people ; 5 of the biggest banks hold the fate of the German 
people in their hands. The same thing happens in other capitalist countries. 
It may therefore be said that the present capitalist States, or as they are called, 
"Fatherlands," have become huge factories owned by an industrial combine, just 
as formerly a single capitalist owned his particular factory. 

It is not surprising that such combines, unions of the various capitalist coun- 
tries, are now carrying on among themselves the same sort of struggle which 
was formerly carried on between individual capitalists ; the English capitalist 
State is fighting the German capitalist State, just as formerly in England or in 
Germany respectively one individual manufacturer was struggling against an- 
other. Only now the State is a thousand times bigger, and the struggle for the 
Increase of profits is being waged by means of human life and human blood. 

In this struggle, which has spread over the whole globe, the first to i>erish 
were small weak countries. At the beginning it is always the small colonial 
people that perish. Weak, uncivilized tribes are dispossessed of their lands by 
the great plundering States. A struggle ensues for the division of the remain- 
ing '"free" lands, i. e., lands not yet looted by the "civilized" States. Then 
begins a struggle for the re-division of that which has already been looted. 
It is quite evident that the struggle for the re-division of the world must be 
bloody and furious as no war before it. It is conducted by monstrous giants, by 
the biggest States in the world, armed with perfected death-dealing machines. 

The U'orld tear which broke out in the summer of 1914 was the first war of 
the final re-division of the world between the monsters of "civilized" robbery. 
It has drawn into its whirlpool four of the chief rival giants : England. Ger- 
many, America and Japan. And the struggle is being carried on to decide 
which of these plundering unions will put the world under the domination of 
its bloody iron heel. 

This war has everywhere vastly deteriorated the position of the working 
class, which was bad enough as it was. Terrible calamities have fallen on the 
workers : millions of the best men were simply mown down on the battlefields ; 


starvation was the fate of others. Those who dare to protest are menaced with 
severest punishments. Prisons are filled to overflowing; gendarmes with ma- 
chine guns are held ready against the working classes. The rights of the 
workers liave vanished even in the most "free" countries : the workers are even 
forbidden to strike ; strikes are looked upon in the sam,e light as treason. The 
Labor and Socialist Press is stifled. The best workers, the most loyal fighters 
for the revolution, are compelled to hide and build up their organizations 
secretly, just as we used to do in the time of the Czar, furtively liiding from 
crowds of spies and police. No wonder that all these consequences of the war 
have made the workers not only groan, but 7-ise against their oppressors. 

But now the bourgeois States, which are responsible for the great slaughter, 
are in their turn beginning to decay at the root and fall. The bourgeois States 
have "stuck," so to speak. They have stuck in the bloody swamp they have 
created in their hunt after profit, and there is no way out. To go back, to 
return empty-handed is impossible. Tlie policy of the war has led .them into 
a blind alley from which there is no exit. And that is why the war is still 
continuing without either coming to an end or achieving any definite result. 
For the same reason the decaying capitalist order is beginning to totter, and 
will sooner or later have to make way for a new order of things, under which 
the imbecility of the world war for the sake of gain will have become impossible. 

The longer the war lasts the poorer the combatant countries become. The 
flower of the working class has either perished or is lying eaten alive by lice 
in the trenches, busily at work in the cause of destruction. Everything has 
been demolished in the of the war : even brass door handles have been 
conflscated for war requirements. Objects of primary necessity are lacking 
because the war, like the insatiable locust, has devoured everything. There 
is no one to manufacture useful articles any longer ; what there is, is being 
gradually used up. For nearly four years factories that previously turned out 
useful things are manufacturing shells and shrapnel instead. And now, with- 
out men, without producing what is indispensable, all the countries have reached 
a state of decline where people are beginning to howl like wolves with cold, 
hunger, poverty, want and oppression. 

In German villages, where formerly electricity was used, they now burn 
dried wood cliips for lack of coals. Life is coming to a standstill with the 
general growth of poverty of the people. In such well-kept towns as Berlin 
and Vienna, the streets are not traversable at night because of the robberiei? 
that take place. The press is wailing over the insufficiency of iwlice. They 
refuse to see that the growth of crime is the consequence of the growth of 
pauperism, despair and exasperation. Cripples returning from the front find 
sheer starvation at home; the number of hungry and homeless, notwith- 
standing the number of various relief organizations, is constantly growing, 
because there is nothing to eat. 

The harder the position of the warring States, the more friction, quarrels 
and misunderstandings arise between the different sections of the bourgeoisie, 
who formerly went hand in hand for the sake of their mutual aims. In 
Austro-Hungary, Bohemians, Ukranians, Germans, Poles and others are fighting 
each other. In Germany, with the conquest of new provinces, the same 
bourgeoisie (Esthonian, Lettish, Ukranian, Polish) which welcomed the German 
troops, are now quarreling furiously with their liberators. In, England, the 
English bourgeoisie is in mortal conflict with the enslaved Irish bourgeoisie. 
And in the midst of this tumult and general disorganization is heard the voice 
of the laboring class, before which history has laid the problem of putting an 
end to war and of oi^erthrotving the yoke of capitalism. Thus approaches 
the hour of the decay of capitalism and the communist revolution of the working 

The first stone was laid by the Russian October Revolution. The reason why 
capitalism in Russia became disorganized before it did in any other country, 
was that the burden of the world war was heaviest for the young capitalist 
State of our country. We had not the monstrous organization of the bour- 
geoisie which they have in England, Germany or America ; and our bourgeoisie 
could not therefore coi)e with the demands laid on it by the war. Nor could 
they withstand the mighty onset of the Russian laboring class and of the poor 
elements of the peasantry who, in the October days, knocked the bourgeoisie 
out of their seats and put at the head of the Government the party of the 
working class — the Communist Bolsheviks. 


Sooner or later the same fate will overtake the bourgeoisie of Western 
Europe, where the working class is joining more and more the ranks of the 
communists. Everywhere, organizations of native "bolsheviks" are growing; in 
Austria and America, in Germany and in Norway, in France and in Italy. 
The programme of the communist party is becoming tlie programme of the 
universal proletarian revolution. 

chapter iii 

General Sharing, or Cooperative Communist Production 

We already know that the root of the evil of all plundering wars, of oppression 
of the working classes and of all the atrocities of capitalism, is that the world 
has been enslaved by a few State organized capitalist bands, who own all the 
wealth of the earth as their private property. The capitalist ownership of 
means of production — this is the reason of reasons which explains the barbarity 
of the present order of things. To deprive the rich of their power by depriving 
them of their wealth, by force, that is the paramount duty of the working class, 
of the Labor Party, the party of communists. 

Some think that, after depriving the rich of their possessions, these should be 
religiously, justly and equally divided between everybody, and then all will be 
well. Everyone, they say, would have just as much as everyone else; all would be 
equal, and freed from inequality, oppression and exploitation. Thanks to this 
equal share-out, general division and allotment of all the riches amongst the 
I)oor, everybody will look after -himself, will own all things convenient for his 
use, and the domination of man over man will vanish. 

But this is not the point of view of the Communist Party. The Communist 
Party considers that such equal sharing would lead to nothing good, and to no 
other result than confusion and a return to the old order. 

Firstly, there are quite a number of things which are impossible to divide. 
How, for instance, would you divide the railway? If one man gets the rails, 
another the steel plate, a third one of the screws, and a fourth begins smashing 
up the carriages to light his stove, a fifth breaks a mirror, to have a piece of glass 
for shaving purposes, and so on — it is plain that this kind of division would not 
be fair at all, and would only lead to an idiotic plundering and destruction of 
useful things. It is just as impossible to divide a machine. For. if one takes a 
pinion, another a lever, and the rest other parts, the machine will cease to be a 
machine, and the whole thing will go to ruin. And the same thing holds good with 
I'egard to all complicated machinery, which is so important as a means of further 
production. We have only to think of telegraph and telephone apparatiis, and 
the apparatus at chemical works, etc. It is evident that only an unintelligent 
man or a direct enemy of the working class would advise this kind <>f sharing. 

This, however, is not the only reason why such a sharing is harmful. Let us 
suppose that by some kind of miracle, a more or less equal division was attained 
of everything taken from the rich ; even that would not lead to any desirable 
result in the end. What is the meaning of a division? It means that instead of a 
few large owners there would spring up a large number of small ones. It means 
not the abolition of private ownership, but its dispersion over a large area. In 
the place of large ownership there would arise ownership on a small scale. But 
such a period we have already had in the past. We know very well that capital- 
ism and large capitalists have developed out of the competition between one 
small owner and another. If we bred a number of small owners as a result of 
our division, we shouh! get the following result: part of them (and quite a 
considerable part) would, on the very next day, get rid of their share on some 
market or other (say the Soucharew Market in Moscow), and their property 
would thus fall into the hands of wealthier owners ; between the remaining ones 
a struggle would ensue for the buyers, and in this struggle, too, the wealthier 
ones would soon get the upper hand of the less well-to-do. The latter would soon 
be ruined and turn into proletarians, and their lucky rivals would amass fortunes, 
employing men to work for them, and thus be gradually transformed into first- 
rate capitalists. And so we should, in a very short time, return to the same order 
which we have just destroyed, and find ourselves once again before the old 
problem of capitalist exploitation. 

Dividing up into small pi'operty-holders is not the ideal of the workers or the 
agricultural laborer. It is rather the dream of the small shopkeeper opnressed 
by the big one, who wants to become a large shopkeeper himself. How to 
become a 'boss', how to get hold of as much as possible and i-etain it in his greedy 


clutch — that is what the shopkeeper is aiming at. To think of otlier^ and consider 
what this may result in is not his affair so long as he gets an extra sixpence 
clinking in his pocket. He is not to be frightened by a possible return to capi- 
talism, for he is cherishing a faint hope that he himself, John Smith, may 
become a capitalist. And that would not be so bad for him. 

No ; there is an entirely different road along which the working class should 
go, and is going. The working class is interested in such a reconstruction of 
society as would make return to capitalism impossible. Sharing of wealth 
would mean driving capitalism out of the front door only to see it return by 
the back door. The only way out of this dilemma is a cooperative lahor {com- 
munist) system. 

In a communist order, all the wealth belongs not to individuals or classes, 
but to society as a whole, which becomes, as it were, one great labor association ; 
no one man is master over it. All are equal comrades. There are no classes ; 
capitalists do not employ labor, nor do workers sell their labor to employers. 
The work is carried out jointly, according to a prearranged labor plan. A 
central bureau of statistics calculates how much it is required to manufacture 
in a year ; such and such a number of boots, trousers, sausages, blacking, wheat, 
cloth, and so on. It will also calculate that for this purpose such and such a 
number of men must work on the fields and in the sausage work respectively, 
such and such a number in the large communal tailoring workshops, etc., and 
working hands will be distributed accordingly. 

The whole of production is conducted on a strictly calculated and adjusted 
plan, on the basis of an exact estimate of all the machines, apparatus, all raw 
material, and all the labor power in the community. There is also an exact 
account kept of the annual requirements of the community. The manufactured 
products is stored in communal warehouses, from whence it is distributed 
amongst the workers. All work is carried out only in the largest works and 
on the best machines, thereby saving labor. The management of production 
is conducted along the most economical lines : all unnecessary expenditure is 
avoided, owing to work being carried out on one general plan of production. 
We do not have here the kind of order that allows one kind of management 
in one place and another kind of management in another ; or that one factory, 
for example, should not know how things are done at another factory. Here, 
on the contrary, the whole world is weighed and accounted for. Cotton is only 
grown where the soil is most suitable. The production of coal is concentrated 
in the richest mines; iron foundries are built in the neighborhood of coal and 
ore ; parts where the soil is tit for wheat, will not be employed for building 
monstrous city edifices, but will be used for sowing wheat. Everything, in 
short, is arranged in such a manner that each kind of production should be 
carried out in a place most suitable for it, where work could be done most 
successfully, where things could be obtained easiest, where human labor would 
be most productive. All this can be attained only by working on a single plan 
and by organizing the whole community into one vast labor commune. 

People in this commtmistic order do not benefit at one another's expense. 
There are no rich here, no parvenues, no bosses and no bottom dogs ; society is 
not divided into classes of which one rules over the other. And there being no 
classes means that there are not two sorts of people (poor and rich), gnashing 
their teeth against one another, the oppressor against the oppressed, and vice 
versa. For this same reason we have no such organization as the State, because 
there is no dominating class requiring a special organization to keep their class 
opponents under their heel. There is no Government to rule men, and there 
is no power of one man over another. There is administration of things only, 
management of machines ; there is the power of human society over Nature. 
Mankind is not divided up into hostile camps; it is imited by common labor and 
by a common struggle against the elements. The political barriers that divide 
nations are done away with. Separate fatherlands are abolished. The whole 
of humanity, without distinction of nationality, is bound together in all its 
parts and organized into one united whole. All peoples form one great united 
labor association. 

chapter iv 

An Anarchist or a Communist Crder 

There are people who call themselves Anarchists, that is to say, adherents 
to an order of things where there is no Government. They aflBrm that the 


Rolslievik-Coninmnists are on the wrong path, because they wish to preserve 
order, and that any kind of power or authority, and any kind of state, means 
oppression and violence. We have seen tliat sucli an opinion of communism 
is not right. A communist order of life is an order in which there are neither 
workers nor capitalists, nor any kiiul of State. The difference between an 
anarchist and a communist order is not in the fact that there is a State in 
one and none in the other. No ; there is no State in either of them. The real 
difference is in the following : — 

Anarchists think that human life will be better and freer when they sub- 
divide all production into small labor-conmiune organizations. A group or 
association, say, of ten men is formed who have united by their own free 
will. Very well. These ten men begin to work on their own account and at 
their own risk In another place there has arisen a similar association ; in a 
third another. In time all these associations enter into negotiations and agree- 
ments with one another concerning the things which are lacking in each respec- 
tive union. Gradually they come to an understanding and "free contracts" or 
agreements are drawn up. 

And now all production is carried on in these small communes. Every 
man is free at any time to withdraw from tlie commune, and each commune 
is free to withdraw from the voluntary union (federation) of these small com- 
munes (labor associations). Do anarchists reason rightly? Any v.'orker ac- 
quainted with the present system of factory machine production will see that 
this is not right. Let us explain why. 

The future order is meant to save the working class from two evils. In 
the first place from the subjection of man by man, from exploitation from 
the evil of one man oppressing another. Tliis is attained by casting off the 
yoke of capital and depriving the capitalists of all their wealth. But there 
Is yet another problem, that of shaking off the yoke of Nature, of mastering 
Nature, of organizing production in the best, most perfect way. Only then 
will it i)e possible for each man to spend but a little time in the manufacture of 
food products, boots, clothes, houses, etc., and to spend the rest of his time 
for developing his mind, for studying science, for art, for all that which makes 
human life beautiful. Prehistoric man lived in groups in which all were equal. 
But they led a brutal existence, because they did not subject Nature to them- 
selves, but allowed Nature entirely to subject them. Although with the capital- 
ists production on a large scale humanity has learned to control Nature, the 
working class still live like beasts of burden, because the capitalists hold them in 
his clutches, owing to the existence of economic inequality. What follows? 
That economic equality should be united with production on a large scale. It 
is not enough to do away with capitalists. It is indispensible that production 
should be organized, as we have already said, on a large scale. All small, 
inefficient enterprises must disappear. The whole work must be concentrated 
in the largest factories, work and estates. And not in such a way that Tom 
should not know what John is doing, nor John know what Tom is doing ; this 
kind of management is all wrong. What we want is a united plan of work. 
The more localities such a plan embraces the better. The world must ultimately 
become one labor enterprise, where the whole of humanity, in accordance with 
a strictly worked out, estimated and measured plan, would work for its own 
needs, on the best machines, at the biggest works, without either employers 
or capitalists. In order to advance production, we must on no account subdivide 
the big production which capitalisnk has left us as a heritage. It should, on 
the contrary, be still more widened. The wider and larger the general plan, 
the bigger the scale on which production will be organized, the more will it be 
guided by the estimates and accounts of the statistical centres. In other words, 
the more centralized industry will be, the better: for then the less labor will 
fall to the share of each individual, the freer will each man be, the greater 
the scope for mental development in human society. 

But the future state of society propagated by the anarchists is just the 
opposite of this. Instead of enlarging, centralizing or regulating production, 
it subdivides it, and consequently iveakens the domination of man over Nature. 
There is no general plan, no large organization. Under an anarchist order 
it will be even impossible to utilize large machines to the fullest extent, to 
reconstruct railroads, according to a ganeral plan, to undertake irrigation on 
a big scale. Let us give an example. A great deal is being spoken of sub- 
stituting steam plant by electricity, and of utilizing waterfalls, etc., for obtain- 
ing electric motor power. In order to distribute correctly the electrical energy 
obtained, it is of course necessary to estimate, weigh and measure where and 
94931— 40— app., pt. 1 12 


how much of this energy is to be directed, so as to derive the greatest possible 
advantage therefrom. What does that mean, and how is it to be made pos- 
sible? It is only possible wlien production is organized on a large scale, wlaen 
it is concentrated in one or two great centres of management and control. 
And, on tlie other hand, it is Impossible under an anarchist order of small, 
disseminated communes but loosely held togetlier. In this way we can see 
that, as a matter of fact, production cannot be properly organized in an 
anarcliist State. This in its turn results in a long working day, i. e., dependence 
to a great extent on Nature. An anarchist order would only serve as a bridle 
retarding the progress of liumanity. That is wiiy we, communists, are tight! ng 
against tlie teaching spread by the anarchists. 

Now it is plain why anarchist propaganda leads to a sharing of wealth 
instead of a communist construction of society. A small anarcliist commune 
is not a vast collaboration of men, but a tiny group, wliidi can even consist 
of as few as two or three men. At Petrograd there exist such a group — "The 
Union of Five Oppressed". According to the anarchist teachings it might 
have been "A Union of Two Oppressed". Imagine what would happen if 
every five men or every couple of men began independently to requisition, 
confiscate, and then start work at their own risk. Tliere are in Russia about 
a hundred million of tlie laboring population. If they were to form "unions 
of five oppressed," we should have in Russia twenty millions of such com- 
munes. Imagine what a Babel would ensue if these twenty million little com- 
munes began acting indei>end('ntly ! What chaos and anarchy we should have! 
Nor would it be surprising that if such groups began, independently of each other, 
to usurp tlie wealth of the ricli, notliing but a sharing-out would result. And 
sharing-out leads, as we have seen above, to the reign of capital all over again, 
to violence and oppression of tlie laboring masses. 


To Communism Through Proletarian Dictatorship 

How is the communist order to be instituted? How is it to be attained? To 
this the Communist Party gives the following answer: Through the dictator- 
ship of the proletariat. 

Dictatorship means a power of iron, a power that shows no mercy to its 
foes. Tlie dictatorship of the working class means the governing power of 
the working class, which is to stifle the bourgeoisie and the landowners. 
Such a government of the workers can only arise out of a Socialist revolution 
of the working class, which destroys the bourgeois State and bourgeois power, 
and builds up a new State on the ruins — that of the proletariat itself and 
of the poorest elements supporting it. 

This, in fact, is the reason why we stand for a workers' State, whilst the 
anarchists are against it. That means to say that we, communists, want a 
workers' government which we MUST HAVE PROVISIONALLY, UNTIL THE 

And so you, communists, are for force, we may be asked. Certainly, we 
shall reply. But we are for REVOLUTIONARY FORCE. First of all we 
think that by mere gentle persuasion the working class will never attain any- 
thing at all. The road of compromise, as preached by the mensheviks and 
the socialist revolutionaries, will lead nowhere. The working class will achieve 
liberty in no other w;>y except thronsrb a revolution, that is to say, through 
the overthrow of the power of capitalism, through the destruction of the bour- 
geoise State. But every revolution is a form of violence against former rulers. 
The March revolution in Russia was force against the oppressors, landlords and 
the Czar. The October revolution was force, of the workers, peasants and 
soldiers, against the bourgeoisie. And such force against those who have op- 
pressed millions of the toiling masses is not wiong — it is sacred. 

But the working class is compelled to use force against the bourgeoisie even 
after the bourgeoisie has been overthrown in an open revolutionary fight. 
For, as a matter of fact, even after the working class have destroyed the 
government of the bourgeoisie, the bourgeoisie does not cease to exist as 
a class. It does not vanish altogether. It continues to hope for a return to 


appelNdix, part 1 163 

the old order, and is therefore ready to form an alliance with anyone, except 
•ciie victorious working class. 

The experience of the Russian revolution of 1917 fully confirms this. In 
October the working class excluded the bourgeoisie from the government. But, 
nevertheless, the bourgeoisie was not completely crushed : it acted against the 
workers, mobilizing all its forces, striving to crush the proletariat again, and 
to achieve its own ends by hook or by crook. It organized sabotage; that is, 
counter-revolutionary officials, — clerks, and civil servants who did not wish to 
be subjected to workmen and peasants, abandoned their posts en masse. It 
organized the armed forces of Dutoff, Kaledin, Korniloff ; it is at present, whilst 
we are writing these lines, organizing the banus of Esaiil Seminoff for a cam- 
paign against the Siberian Soviets ; and lastly it is calling to its aid the troops 
■of the foreign bourgeoisie, German, Japanese, British, etc. Thus the experience 
of the Russian October revolution teaches us that the working class, even after 
its victory, is compelled to deal with the mightiest of external foes (the plun- 
dering capitalistic States) who are on their way to aid the overthrown bour- 
geoisie of Russia. 

If we seriously consider the whole world at the present time, we shall see 
that it is only in Russia that the proletariat has succeeded in overthrowing 
the power of the bourgeois State. The remainder of the world still belongs 
to big-capital robbers. Soviet Russia, with its worker and peasant Govern- 
ment, is a small island in the midst of a tempestuous capitalist ocean. And 
even if the victory of the Russian workers is to be followed by a victory of 
the workers of Austria and Germany, there will still be left big vulture-like 
capitalist States. If all capitalistic Europe breaks up and fails under the blows of 
the working class, there will still be left the capitalistic world of Asia, with Japan 
like a beast of prey at its head. Then we have the capital of America, at 
the head of which stands the monstrous plundering union called the United 
States of America. All these capitalist States will not give up their position 
without a fight. They will fight with all their might to prevent the proletariat 
from getting possession of the whole world. The mightier the onslaught of the 
proletariat, the more dangerous the position of the bourgeoisie ; the more neces- 
sary it becomes for the bourgeoisie to concentrate all its forces in the struggle 
against the proletariat. The proletariat, having conquered in one, two, or 
three countries, will inevitably come into collision with the rest of the bourgeois 
world that will attempt to break by blood and iron the elTorts of the class 
that is fighting for its freedom. 

What follows? It follows that pr^ior to the establishment of the communist 
order and after the abolition of capitalism, in the interval between capitalism 
and communism, even after socialistic revolutions in several countries, the 
working class will have to endure a furious struggle with its inner and external 
foes. And for such a struggle a strong, wide, well-constructed organization' 
is required, having at its disposal, all the means of fighting. An organization 
of this kind is the Proletarian State, the power of the workers. The proletarian 
State, similar to other States, is an organization of the dominant class (the 
dominating class is here the working class), and an organization of force over 
the bourgeoisie, as a means of putting an end to the bourgeoisie and getting 
rid of it. 

He who is afraid of this kind of force is not a revolutionist. The question 
of force should not be regarded from the point of view that every kind of 
force is pernicious. The force practised by the rich against the poor, by 
capitalists toward workers — such force acts against the working class and 
aims at supporting and strengthening capitalistic plunder. But the force of 
workers against the bourgeoisie aims at freeing millions of working men from 
slavery; it means redemption from the rod of capital, from plundering wars, 
from savage looting and destruction of all that mankind has been building 
up and accumulating for ages and ages. That is why, in the making of revolu- 
tion and the forming of a communist order, the iron rule of a proletarian 
dictatorship is indispensable. 

It should be clear to everyone, that during the transition period, the working 
class will have to (and must now) strain all its energy in order to emerge 
victorious in the battle with its numerous enemies, and that no other organiza- 
tion can defeat the enemies of the working class except one that embraces the 
working class and the poorer peasantry of the whole country. How is it possible 
to ward off foreign imperialists unless one holds in one's hands government 
power and an army? How is it possible to fight against counter-revolution 
unless one holds in one's hands arms (as a means of coercion), prisons for 


confining counter-revolutionaries (a means of coercion), and other means of 
force and subjection? How is it possible to make capitalists conform to the 
workers' control, requisition, etc., if the working class possesses no means for 
compelling others to obey? Of course some may say that a few "Unions of Five 
Oppressed" would be sufficient. That is nonsense. 

The pecularities of a transition, period call for ttie necessity of a Workers' 
State. For even when the bourgeois will be defeated all over the world, accus- 
tomed as it is to idleness, and imbued with feelings of hostility towards the 
workers, it will do its best to avoid work, to try and injure the proletariat in every 
way. The bourgeois must be made to serve the people. Only an authorized 
government and compulsory measures can do that. 

In backward countries like Russia there still exists a multitude of small and 
medium property-holders, sweaters, usurers, and land-grabbers. All these are 
against the poorest elements of the rural population and still more against the 
town laborers. They follow in the wake of big capital and of the ex-state 
owners. It is needless to say that the workers and the poorest of the peasants 
must crush them should they rise against the revolution. The workers have got 
to think how to organize a new plan of work, systematize the work of produc- 
tion taken out of the hands of the manufacturers, help the peasants to organize 
rural economy and a fair distribution of bread, manufactured goods, iron 
products, and so on. But the sweater-land-grabber, grown fat on the war, is 
stubborn ; he does not intend to act in the common interest. "I am my own 
master", he says. The workers and the poor elements of the peasantry must 
compel him to obey just in the same way as they are compelling the big 
capitalists to obey ; the ex-landlords and ex-generals and officers. 

The more precarious the position of the workers' revolution is. and the more 
enemies it is surrounded by, the more ruthless should be the workers' govern- 
ment, the heavier should be the hand of the revolutionary workers and of the 
poorest elements of the peasantry, and the more energetic should be the dicta- 
torship. State governnaent in the hands of the working class is an axe held 
in readiness against the bourgeoisie. In a Communist order, when the bour- 
geoisie has ceased to exist, and with it class divisions and every kind of ex- 
ternal as well as internal danger, then the axe will be needed no longer. But 
in the transition period, when the enemy is still showing his fangs, and is ready 
to drown the whole working class in a sea of blood (let us recall to mind the 
shooting of the Finnish workmen, the executions at Kiev, executions of work- 
men and peasants all over the Ukraine and in Lithuania!), and we will agree 
that to go unarmed, to act without this axe of State government, would be an 
act of folly. 

Two parties are clamouring against the dictatorship of the working class. 
On the one side are the Anarchists ; these, being against every kind of govern- 
ment, are therefore against the government of the workers and peasants. To 
these we can say, "If you are against the workers using means of force against 
the bourffcoisie, then get you to a convent !" 

On the other side, against the dictatorship of the workers we have the 
Mensheviks and the Right Socialist Revolutionaries (though they were them- 
selves formerly in favor of it). These are against encroaching upon the 
liberty. ... of the bourgeoisie. They are backing up the purse-proud bourgeois 
to get for him that which he once possessed, and enable him peacefully to saunter 
along the Nevsky Prospect in Petrograd or the Tverskaya at Moscow, etc. They 
maintain that the working class is "not yet ripe" for a dictatorship. To them 
we can say, "You, sirs, defenders of the bourgeoisie, go to the bourgeoisie whom 
you love so much, but leave the working class and the poor peasantry alone". 

Just because the Communist Party is an adherent of the most rigid iron 
dictatorship of the workers over capitalists — small sweaters, late landowners, 
and all other similar delightful relics of the old bourgeois order — it is for that 
very reason the extremest and most revolutionary of all existing groups and 
parties. "Through a mercilessly firm government of the workers, through a 
proletarian dictatorship— to Communism !" This is the war-cry of our party. 
And the programme of our party is the programme of proJctarian dictatorship. 


A Soviet Government or a Boltrgeois Repubuc? 

Our attitude towards the necessity of dictatorship leads us, as an inevitable 
result, both to our struggle against an antiquated form of a parliamentary 
bourgeois republic (sometimes called "democratic"), and to our attempts at 


setting up instead a new form of State administration — a government of the 
tiovicts of Workers', Soldiers' and Peasants' Deputies. 

The meusheviks and the right wing of the socialist revolutionaries are staunch 
supporters of the Constituent Assembly and a parliamentary republic. They 
loudly abuse the government of the Soviets. And why? First, because they are 
afraid of the power of the workers, and desire to retain all power in the 
hands of the bourgeoisie. But the communists who are sti'iving to realize the 
(ommunist (socialist) order must inevitably fight for the dictatorship of the 
proletariat and for the complete overthrow of the bourgeoisie. That is where 
the difference lies. And for this very reason tlie parties of meusheviks and 
socialist revolutionaries are at one with the party of the bourgeoisie. 

What is the essential dift'erence between a parliamentary republic and a 
republic of Soviets? It is, that in a soviet republic the non-working elements 
are deprived of the franchise and take no part in administrative affairs. The 
country is governed by Soviets, which are elected by the toilers in the places 
vrhere they work, as factories, works, work.shops, mines and in villages and 
liamlets. The bourgeoisie, ex-landowners, bankers, speculating traders, mer- 
chants, shopkeepers, usurers, the Korniloft" intellectuals, priests and bishops, 
in short the whole of the black host have no right to vote, no fundamental 
political rights. The foundation of a parliamentary republic is formed by 
the Constituent Assembly, while the supreme organ of the Soviet Republic is 
The Convention of Soviets. What is the principal difference between the Con- 
vention of Soviets and the Constituent Assembly? Anybody with the least 
intelligence can easily answer this question. Although the meusheviks and 
the right wing of the .socialist revolutionaries do, as a matter of fact, try to 
muddle things by inventing various pompous names such as, for instance, 
"Master of the Russian Land," still truth will out. The Constituent Assembly 
differs from the Convention of Soviets inasmuch as into the former are elected 
not only the laborers, but also the bourgeoisie and all the bourgeois hangers-on. 
It consequently differs from the Convention of Soviets in that in the Constituent 
Assembly may sit not only workers and peasants, but also bankers, landowners 
and capitalists; not only the labor party (the communists), not only the left 
wing of socialist revolutionaries, and even not only the socialist traitors such 
as the right wing of the socialist revolutionaries, but also the constitutional 
democrats (the party of traitors to the people), the Black Hundred and the 
Octobrists. This is the crowd for whom these honorable compromisers are 
demanding enfranchisement. When they clamor for the necessity of a "popu- 
lar," "all-national" Constituent Assembly, they do not consider the Soviets as 
all-national, because the Rnssian. bourgeoisie is lacking to complete the full 
representation of the Russian people. To supplement working-class representa- 
tion with this crowd of parasites, to give these enemies of the people all 
rights, to give them seats next to themselves iu parliament, to transform the 
class government of workers and peasants into a class government of the boui'- 
geoisie under the pretext of admitting all nationalities — this is the task of the 
right wing of the socialist revolutionaries, of the mensheviks, of the constitu- 
tional democrats, in a word of big capital and its petty bourgeois agents. The 
experience of all countries shows that where the bourgeoisie enjoy all the 
lights, it invariably deceives the working class and the poorest peasantry. 

By holding the press, newspapers and magazines firmly in its grasp, possess- 
ing as it does vast riches, bribing officials, exploiting the services of hundreds of 
thousands of their agents, threatening and intimidating the more downtrodden 
of their slaves the bourgeoisie succeed in preventing power from slipping from 
their hands. At first sight it appears as if the whole nation were voting, but 
iu reality this screen is used by domineering financial capital, which arranges 
matters to suit itself, and even boasts of "allowing the people to vote" and of 
preserving all kinds of "democratic liberties." This is the reason why, in all 
countries where there is a bourgeois republic (take, for instance, France, Swit- 
zerland, and the United States), notwithstanding universal suffrage, the power 
is completely concentrated in the hands of the leading bankers. And so we see 
why the right wing of the socialist revolutionaries and the mensheviks are 
striving to overthrow the power of the Soviets and to summon the "Constituent 
Assembly." In granting votes to the bourgeoisie they intend to prepare for a 
transition to a similar order of things as exists in France and America. They 
consider that the Russian workers are not "ripe" to hold the government in 
their own hands. But the party of the communists-bolsheviks, on the contrary, 
holds that dictatorship of the workers is essential at the present moment and 
that there can be no talk whatever of any transfer of government. The bour- 
geoisie must be deprived of every possibility of deceiving the people. The 


bourgeoisie must be set aside aud firmly prevented from taking any part in the- 
government of the country, because the present is the time of acute struggle. 
We must strengthen aud widen the dictatorship of the workers and the poorer- 
elements of the peasantry. That is why the State government of Soviets is 
indispensable. Here we have no bourgeoisie whatever, and no landowners. 
Here the State is governed by the organizations of workers and peasants which 
have grown up together with the revolution and have borne the whole burden 
of the great struggle on their own shoulders. 

But this is not enough. An ordinary republic does not only represent the 
power of the bourgeoisie. A republic of this kind can never, by reason of its 
composition, become inspired with the spirit of the workers party. In a parlia- 
mentary republic every citizen hands in his vote once in every four or five years, 
and there his part in this matter ends. All the rest is left to deputies, ministers 
and presidents, who manage everything. There is no connection whatever with 
the masses. The masses of the laboring people are only tools exploited by the- 
oflicials of the bourgeoisie, taking no real part in the government. 

Quite a different matter is a Soviet republic, corresponding to a dictatorship 
of the workers. Here the whole administration is based on an entirely different 
principle. A Soviet government is not an organization of officials independent 
of the masses and dependent on the bourgeoisie. The Soviet government and its 
organs are supported by general organizations of the woi'king class and the 
peasantry. Trade unions, works and factories committees, local Soviets of work- 
ment and peasants, soldiers' and sailors' organizations — all these support the 
central Soviet Government. Prom the Central Soviet Government thousands 
and millions of threads spread in all directions : first these threads go to dis- 
trict and provincial Soviets, then to the town Soviets, from these to the town- 
parish Soviets, from these again to the factories and works, uniting hundreds 
of thousands of workers. All the higher institutions of the Soviet Government 
are organized on the same lines. Take, for instance, the Supreme Council for 
Public Economy. It is composed of representatives of central committees of 
trade unions, of factories and works committees, and other organizations. Trade- 
unions in their turn unite whole branches of production ; they have branches in 
various towns and are supported by the organized masses at factories and 
works. To-day at every factory there is a factory and works committee, which 
is elected by the workers of that factory ; these factory and works' committees 
being again united. And these, too, send their representatives to the Supreme 
Council for Public Economy, which draws up economic plans and directs pro- 
duction. Thus, here, too, the central organ of the control of industry is com- 
posed of representatives of workers, and is supported by mass organizations 
of the working class and of the poorest elements of the peasantry. This, then,, 
is an entirely different plan from that of a bourgeois republic. The bourgeoi- 
sie is not only deprived of rights, and there is not only a question of the country 
being governed by representatives of workers and peasants. The great thing is 
that the Soviets govern the country, keeping in constant touch with the large 
unions of the workers and peasants, and thus the wide masses are all the time 
taking part in the administration of the Workers' and Peasants' Government 
In this way each organized workman exercises his influence. He takes part 
in the government of the state not only by electing trusted representatives once 
a month or two. No. The trade unions, say, work out a plan for organizing 
production ; these plans are then considered by the Soviets or by the Council 
for Public Economy, and then, if they are practicable they obtain the full force 
of law, after being approved by the Central Executive Committee of the Soviets. 
Any given trade union, any works' and factories' committee, can in this way 
take a part in the general work of creating a new order of life. In a bour- 
geois republic the more indifferent the masses are, the happier is the govern- 
ment, because the interests of the masses are opiiosed to those of the capitalist 
state. If, for Instance, the masses of the United States should take matters into 
their own hands — that would mean the end of the supremacy of the bourgeoisie. 
Tlie bourgeois State is based on the deception of the masses, keeping them half- 
awake, by the method of depriving them of any active part in the everyday 
work of the state, by summoning them once every few years "to vote", and by 
deceiving them with their own vote. It is entirely different thing in a Soviet 
republic. The Soviet republic, embodying the dictatorship of the masses, cannot 
even for a minute tear itself away from these Such a republic is the 
stronger in proportion to the greater activity and energy manifested by the 
masses and the more work accomplished at works and factories, in the towns 


and iu the provinces. It is not a matter of mere chance, therefore, that the 
Soviet Government in issuing its decrees addresses tlie masses with the demand 
that the workers and poorest peasants themselves should carry these decrees 
into execution. That is why the significance of various workers' and peasants' 
organizations entirely changed after the October revolution. At first they were 
weapons of class struggle against the governing capitalists and landowners. 
Take, for example, the trade unions and some small peasants' Soviets. At first 
they were compelled to carry on a struggle for higher pay and a shorter working 
day in the towns, and for depriving the landowners of the land in the rural 
districts. At the present time, when the government is in the hands of the 
workers and the peasants, organizations are becoming wheels in the 
machinery of state government. At present, the trade unions are not only fight- 
ing with the capitalists, but are taking an active part in the organization of 
production, as organs of a labor government, as part of the Soviet State, in the 
adminii^tratio)! of industry; and in the same way the village and peasants' 
Soviets not only have to carry on a war with village sharks or sweaters, with 
the capitalists and landowners, but are also working to establish a new land 
system; that is to say, they have the ndm'mistratlon of the land in their hands 
as organs of a workers' and peasants' government; they are as screws and nuts 
in the huge machine of state administration, where the power is in the hands 
of the workmen and peasants. 

In this way, through the workers' and peasants' organizations, the widest sec- 
tions of the laboring masses have been gradually called to the work of govern- 
ment. There is nothing like this in any other country. Nowhere but in Russia 
has the victory of the working class and the establishment of a workers' govern- 
ment yet been achieved ; no other country has yet a proletarian dictatorship, 
nor a Soviet Republic, nor a Soviet state. 

It is very clearly understood that the Soviet Government corresponding to 
the proletarian dictatorship, does not suit those groups of the population that 
are interested in a return to capitalist slavery, instead of going ahead to a 
communist order. It is also clear that they cannot possibly say frankly and 
openly, "we want the whip and the stick for the workers." 

Here, too. a certain amount of deceit is required. Such deceit is the specialty 
of the right wing of the socialist revolutionaries and of the mensheviks who are 
shouting about "a struggle for a democratic republic," about the Constituent 
Assembly, which they declare will save us from all evils, and so on. But as a 
matrer of fact the real question here is to transfer the government to the 
howf/eoisie. And iu this fundamental question no agreement can possibly be 
arrived at between us, communists, and the various mensheviks, right wing 
socialist revolutionaries, the followers of the "Novaya Zhisn," and the rest of 
that fraternity. They stand for capitalism, whilst we stand for a movement 
towards Comniunism. They— for a government of the bourgeoisie, we — for a 
dictatorship of the workers; they — for a parliamentary bourgeois i-epublic, where 
capital will reign, we — for a Soviet Socialist Republic where all the power 
belongs to the workers and the poorest elements of the peasantry. 

Until the present time, prior to the Russian Revolution of 1917, the dictator- 
ship of the proletariat was only written about. But no one seemed to have 
quite a clear idea as to how this dictatorship v.'as to be realized. The Russian 
Revolution evolved the actual form of the dictatorship— that of the Soviet 
Republic. And therefore, at the present moment, the best sections of the uiter- 
national proletariat are inscribing on their banners the motto of a Soviet re- 
public and of a Soviet government. And therefore, too, our task now consists 
in strengthening the Soviet government by all the means in our power, and in 
clearing it of various imdesirable elements, in attracting to the task of recon- 
struction a greater number of capable comrades, elected by the working and 
peasant masses. Only such a government, a government of the Soviets, a govern- 
ment of the workers and peasants, is what the workers and peasants can and 
should defend. 

Should our workers and peasons suffer defeats, should the Constituent Assem- 
bly be really summoned, should the place of the Government of the Soviets be 
taken by an ordinary bourgeois republic after the manner of the French and 
American Republic, then the worker should not only not be under any obliga- 
tion to defend it, but should make it the task of his life to overthrow such a 
reputlic. For it is his duty to defend the government of the workers and not 
the government of the bourgeoisie. With regard to the government of the bour- 
geoisie, he has but one obligation, and that is to overthrow it. 


chaptee vii 

Freedom for the Working Class and the Poorest Elements of the Peasantry ; 

Restrictions for the Bourgeoisie 

(Freedom of Speech, Press, Unions, Meetings, etc., in the Soviet Republic) 

Since v^^e have a dictatorship of workers and peasants whose aim is to crush 
the bourgeoisie completely and to put down any attempt at reviving the bour- 
geois government, it is plain that there can be no question of freedom, in the 
wide sense of the word, for the bourgeoisie, just as there can be no question of 
allowing the bourgeoisie the riglit of franchise, nor of transforming the Soviet 
Government into a republican bourgeois parliament. 

The party of the Communists (bolsheviks) are overwhelmed on all sides by 
shouts of indignation and even threats : ''You stop newspapers, you make arrests, 
you prohibit meetings, you suppress the freedom of speech and of press, you 
revive despotism, you are violators and murderei's," and much more to the same 
effect. It is this question of "freedom" in the Soviet Republic that should be 
thoroughly discussed in detail. 

First of all, let us take an example. When the revolution broke out in ]\Iarch 
of last year (1917), Tzarist ministers were arrested (Sturmer, Protoppopoff 
and others). Did anyone protest? No! And yet these arrests, just as any 
other arrests, were an infringement of personal freedom. Why was this in- 
fringement universally approved? And why do we still say at the present 
moment : "Yes, that was the right thing to do?" Simply because it was the arrest 
of dangerous counter-revolutionaries. And in a revolution, more than at any 
other time, we should remember the eleventh Commandment : "Be on the look 
out!" If you are not, if you set all the enemies of the people free, if you do 
not keep them under control, there will be nothing left to remember the 
revolution by ! 

Anotljer example. When Sturmer and Goremikin were being arrested, the 
Black Hundred press was closed. This was a deliberate infringement of the 
freedom of the press. Was it justifiable? Most certainly! And no reasonable 
being will dispute that this was just what should have been done. And why? 
Again, because at a time of revolution, when there is a life and death struggle 
going on, the enemy should be deprived of his weapons. And the press is such 
a weapon. 

Prior to the October revolution, several Black Hundred societies ("The Two- 
Headed Eagle" and a few others) were closed down at Kiev. This was an 
infringement of the freedom^ of association. But it was the right thing to do, 
because the revolution cannot permit the free organization of unions against the 

Wlien Korniloff was advancing on Petrograd, a number of generals struck, 
refusing to obey the orders of the Provincial Government. They declared they 
would support Korniloff to the last. Was it possible to sanction such freedom 
of generals' strikes f Surely for such strikes the Black Hundred generals should 
have been subjected to the severest punishment. 

What does all this mean? We see now that infringement of freedom is 
necessary with regard to the opponents of the revolution. At a time of revolution 
we cannot allow freedom for the enemies of the people and of the revolution. 
That is a sure, clear, irrefutable conclusion. 

After March and before October neither the mensheviks nor the right socialist 
revolutionaries, nor the bourgeoisie, once raised their voices against the usurpa- 
tion of power by violence in March, or against the suppression of freedom (of 
the Black Hundred press), or speech (Black Hundred), etc. They never once 
raised their voices against all this, because it was carried out by the bourgeoisie, 
Goutchkoff, Mihikoff, Rodzianko, and Tereschenko, and their loyal servants Keren- 
sky and Tzeretelli, who had usurped power in March. 

By October things had changed. In October the workers rose against the 
bourgeoisie who had trodden upon their necks in March. In October the peasants 
supported the workers. It clearly follows that the bourgeoisie grew to hate 
the woi'kers' revolution, and in its mad hatred behaved no better than the 

All the large property owners united against the working class and the 
poorest peasantry. They gathered around the so-called party of the people's 
freedom (in reality the party of the people's treason) against the people. 


And it is easy enough to understand that when the people succeed in getting 
the upper hand over their enemies the latter, in impotent fury, cry, "usurpers," 
"violators," and so on. 

The following is now clear to the workers and peasants. The party of the 
Connnunists not only allows no freedom (such as liherty of the press, speech, 
meetings, unions, etc.) for the hourf/eois enemies of the people, but goes still 
further and demands of the government to be always ready to close the bour- 
geois press, to br(>ak up gatherings of the enemies of the people to forbid their 
lying and libeling, and sowing panic; the party must mercilessly suppress all 
attempts of the bourgeoisie to return to power. And this is what is meant by 
dictatorship of the proletariat. 

When there is a question of the press, we first ask whieh press— the bourgeois 
or the workers' press; when there is a question of gatherings, we ask what 
gatherings — workers' or counter-revolutionary ; when a question arises of strikes, 
the first question for us is whether it is a strike of the workers against the 
capitalists, or a sabotage instigated by the bourgeoisie or the bourgeois intel- 
lectuals against the proletariat. He who makes no distinction between these 
two things is groping in the dark. The press, meetings, unions, etc., are weapons 
of class struggle. And in a revolutionary epoch they are the weapons of civil 
war, together with munition stores, machine guns, powder and bombs. The great 
question is : which class is using them as a weapon against the other. The workers 
revolution cannot possiblv grant freedom for the organization of such risings as 
those of Korniloff, Dutoff, or Milukoff against the working masses. Neither 
can it allow full freedom of organization, of speech, press, and of meetings of 
the counter-revolutionary bands who are stubbornly carrying on their own policy, 
and only lying in wait for a chance of throwing themselves upon the workers. 

As we have already seen, the right wing socialist revolutionaries and men- 
sheviks, decaring their motto to be "the Constituent Assembly," are only 
anxious for votes for the dourflcoisie. And just in the same way when they 
violently abuse destruction of freedom they are anxious for the freedom of the 
hourgeoisie. The bourgeois press, bourgeois leaders, the counter-revolutionary 
bourgeois organizations are not to be touched — this is the real position of these 

But, they will say. you yourselves used to close both mensb.evik and socialist 
revolutionary newspapers ; the party of the Communists has more than once 
encroached on the liberty of worthy individuals, who in their time (in the reign 
of the Tzar) suffered imprisonment. How can we .justify that'? This question 
may be answered by another : when Goltz, the right wing socialist revolutionary, 
organized a rising of Junkers and officers against the soldiers and the workers — 
what were we to do? Pat him on the head for it? When Roudneff, the richt 
wing socialist revolutionary together with colonel Riabtzeff, the right wing 
socialist revolutionary. In October armed the Moscow White Guards, consist- 
ing of the sons of the bourgeoisie, houseowners, and other gentry, the gilded 
youth, and in union with the officers and .junkers tried to suppress by machine 
guns and drown in blood the October rising of workers and soldiers — what could 
we do? Decorate them with medals for their feats? When the menshevlk organ 
"Forward" (which ought really to be named "Backward") and the socialist 
• revolutionist "Labor" lied to the Moscow workers at the critical moment of the 
struggle, that Kerensky had taken Petrograd (which they did to break up the 
unanimity nf the workers), were we expected to praise them for these provocatory 

What follows from all this? It follows that when the socialist traitors and 
socialist traitors' organs begin to serve the bourgeoisie too fervently, or when 
they cease to differ In their line of action from the Black Hundred cadet or- 
ganizers of pogroms — then they should and must be treated In the same way as 
their beloved teachers and benefactors. At the present moment there are many 
such, who, although having fought against the Tzar and landowners, now cry 
at the top of their voice when the workers seize the wealth of the bourgeoisie. 
For what they have done in the past we render them our thanks. But if at the 
present moment they do not in any way differ from the Black Hundred liorde, 
then they can hardly exiiect us to encourage them. 

But whilst the l)ourgeolsle and all the other enemies of the proletariat and 

I poorest peasantry require a bridle to restrain them, the proletariat and peasantry, 

1 on the other hand, need complete freedom of speech, of association, and of the 

I press, etc., not only In word, but In fact. Never, under any government, was 

there such a number of workers' and peasants' organizations as there are now 


in the Soviet Government. Never did any government support such a vast num- 
ber of worliers' and peasants' organizations as does the Soviet Government. This 
is because the Soviet Government is the government of workers and peasants 
themselves, and it is no wonder therefore that such a government supports all 
other working class organizations as far as it lies in its power. We repeat, the 
Communists carry all this freedom into effect instead of merely proclaiming it 
before the world. Here is a little example : the freedom of the workers' press. 
Under the pressure of the working class even the bourgeoisie might agree to a 
greater or smaller amount of freedom for the workers' press. But the workers 
have no means ; all the printing works are in the hands of the capitalists. Paper 
is in the hands of the capitalists, who have bought up everything. The workers 
have the right to a free press, but they are unable to make use of it. We, 
Communists, on the other hand, approach the owners of printing works and of 
paper works, and we say to them : "the proletarian government is about to con- 
fiscate your works and declare them to be the property of the workers' and 
peasants' government, and to place them at the disposal of the workers" ; let 
them now put their right to a free press into execution. Of course the capitalists 
will set up a howl at such proceedings, but it is the only way to attain real 
freedom of the workers' press. 

Another question may be put to us : why did the bolsheviks never before speak 
of the complete destruction of the freedom of the bourgeois press? Why were 
they formerly on the side of a bourgeois democratic republic? Why did they 
themselves side with the Constituent Assembly without ever expressing them- 
selves in favor of depriving the bourgeoisie of the franchise? In a word, why 
have they changed their attitude now in conection with these questions? 

The reason is very simple. The working class at that time was not yet powerful 
enough to storm the bourgeois fortress. It needed time to prepare, to gather 
strength, to enlighten the masses, to organize. 

It lacked, for instance, a press of its own uninfluenced by the capitalist class. 
But it could not come to the capitalists and their government and demand : 
"close your newspapers. Messrs Capitalists, and start newspapers for us work- 
ers." They woidd be laughed at; it would be ridiculous to put such demands 
to capitalists. It would be equivalent to expecting the latter to cut their hands 
off with their own knife. Such demands are only made when a position is 
being taken by storm. Previously there was no such time. And that is why 
the working class (and our party) said: "Long live freedom of the press (the 
whole press, the bourgeois jjress included) !" Or take another instance. It is 
evident that employers' associations, such as throw workers on the street, keep 
black lists, etc. These are very harmful to the working class. But the working 
class could not demand the suppression of employers' associations and full 
liberty for labor union. To do this it was necessary first to destroy the capi- 
talist government, and the workers were not strong enough to do that. Tliat 
is why at that time our party demanded the freedom of association (not only 
workingmen's), but unions in general. 

Now times have changed. There is no question now of a lengthy preparation 
for the battle : we are now living in the period after storm, in the period after 
the first great victory over the bourgeoisie. Now there is only one other prob- 
lem before the working class : to finally and irretrievably break up the resist- • 
ance of the bourgeoisie. 

That is why the working class, acting in the name of the liberation of the 
whole of humanity from the atrocities and terrors of capitalism, must carry 
out this task to a definite end and with unswerving firmness. No indidgence 
for the bourgeoisie and no leniency^ — but complete liberty and the possibility 
of realizing this liberty, to the working class and poorest peasants. 

chapter viii 

Banks, the Common Propehity of the Workeks. Nationalization of Banks 

We have seen above that the cause of all evils in a capitalist society lies in 
the fact that all the means of production belong to the landowners and capital- 
ists. We have also seen that the only way out of this is to take the means nf 
production out of the hands of the capitalist class (whether they be individual 
capitalists, or trusts, or a bourgeois State) and to transfer them into the hands 
of the working class. This can be done and is being done, now that the workers 
and peasants possess such a strong weapon as is their Workers' Soviet Govern- 


It is perfectly understood that the tirst thing to be done in this direction is to 
deprive capitaf of its most essential and most important means of control ; to 
take the principal economic fortresses of capital. The second is to begin with 
that which is not only easier to take, but easier also to organize and have 
control and account over, and which can be arranged in the smoothest way. 
AVe already know that the task of the working class and the poor peasantry 
does not consist in depriving the rich of their wealth, distributing this wealth 
among themselves, robbing and sharing the spoils. No ; it consists in construct- 
ing society on the basis of labor, working according to a defimte plan, and 
organizing the production and distribution of products. Hence it follows that 
the working class must tirst of all take possession of those organizations which 
have up till now existed only for the profit of the capitalist, and divert them 
to their own uses, putting them on a different footing, thus making them serve 
not capitalists and landowners, not speculators and sharks, but the laboring 

That is why our party has put forward the demand (since carried into 
execution) for the nationalization of banks, that is to say, for the transfer of 
banks into the hands of the workers' and peasants' Government. 

It is generally believed that the chief significance of banks lies in the fact 
that their vaults are packed with piles of gold and heaps of paper money and 
valuables, for which reason the Communists are so eager to get the banks. But 
in reality tliis is not the case. 

Modern banks are not only filled with money bags. Banks as a matter of fact, 
represent the pinnacle of capitalist orf/anization which rules industry. The 
industrial capitalists make profits uninterruptedly, and capital flows to them in 
a continuous stream. What does tlie capitalist do with the profit acquired? A 
parr of it is saved for eating, drinking and dissipation. Another part, consider- 
ably larger, is saved for extending his business at any given moment: he can 
only do so when a large enough "balance" has accumulated, a sum big enough, 
let "us say, to build a new factory or set up a new plant. Until that happens he 
deposits his money into the bank so as not to have "dead" capital on his hands. 
He deposits it and gets definite interest on it. The question now is, does this 
capital remain in the bank, increasing thei-e of itself? Certainly not. The 
bank transacts business with this money. It either establishes enterprises, or 
shares purchases in enterprises just being formed. The dividend it obtains on 
its shares are considerably higher than the sums it pays to its clients. 

The difference goes to form the profit of the bank. This difference accumu- 
lates, is again involved in transactions, and in this way the capital of the bank 
increases. Gradually the banks become the real heads of industrial enterprises ; 
some enterprises are entirely owned by them, others, only partly. Experience 
has shown that it is enough to own thirty or forty per cent, of the total shares 
to become practically the controller of the whole enterprise. And that is what 
really happens. For instance, two banks manage and direct the entire industry 
of America. In Germany four banks hold in their hands the whole economic 
lifei of the country. The same thing to a certain extent held good for Russia. 
The great majority of big enterprises in Russia were limited companies. 

Russian banks, too, were the owners of a large number of shares of these 
enterprises, so that the limited companies were in the closest union and in 
complete dependence on the banker — were, in fact, under their heel. Seeing that 
one bank rules over many industrial enterprises, it is evident that a number of 
the largest banks are in reality tlie main directors of industry, the centre as it 
were, in which the threads of various enterprises meet. That is why confiscating 
the banks, depriving private persons of control over banks, and transferring 
them into the hands of the workers' and peasants' government, in a word, the 
nationalization of banks, should become a question of paramount importance to 
the working class. In response to this, the bourgeoisie, together with its press 
and the rest of its suite, have, of course, raised the cry of alarm : "the bolshe- 
viks are robbers ! The bolsheviks are thieves ! Do not allow them to plunder 
the national wealth and the national savings !" But the reason for all this 
clamor is self-evident : the bourgeoisie felt that the nationalization of banks was 
a transfer to the working class of the main fortress of capitalistic society — and 
therefore the first decisive step towards the destruction of their gain and ex- 
ploitation. Once the proletariat has laid its hand on the banks, that means that 
it has already taken into its hands to a great extent the reins of industry. 

On the other hand, it is not hard to see that without the nationalization of 
banks it would have been impossible to weaken the power of the capitalist in 
works and factories. The modern factory depends on the bank ; either the 


bank simply owns the whole factory or a part of its shares. In some cases it 
allows the "factory credit in one form or another. Let us now suppose that the 
workmen of a certain factory have taken everything under their own control. 
If the bank of the factory is a private concern belonging to the bourgeoisie, the- 
whole factory must stop work : it will simply be informed by the bank that there 
will be no further credit. And that is equivalent to cutting off a fortress from 
supplies. Under such conditions the workers would inevitably have to surrender 
and bow the knee to the master. That means, that in nationalizing the banks- 
the Soviet Government simultaneously acquires the power of directing and 
managing finance, and various bonds and certificates which serve as substitutes 
for money ; and thereby the bank, instead of hindering the transfer of industry 
into the hands of the working class, on the contrary lends its assistance in such 
transfer. The power that in the hands of the bankers was directed against the 
workers, now under these now circumstances becomes a power helping the work- 
ing class, and directed against the capitalists. 

The next consists in uniting the different and formerly private banks into 
our national bank, to unite the work of the banks or, as it is called, to centralize 
the hanking huslness. In that case the transfer of industry into the hands of 
the working class would convert the national bank into the principle counting 
house; an institution affecting mutual "payments" between different enterprises 
and separate branches of production. Let us suppose that the coal, steel, and 
iron industries depended on the Central bank. Each one of these has to utilize 
the products of the others ; the steel foundries nuist receive their coal from the 
coal mines, the steel works must get their steel from the foundries, and so on. 
It is evident that since all these enterprises depend entirely upon the bank, all 
kinds of "payments" can be settled by the mere transfer of accounts ; banks 
become simply counting houses for central book-keeping, where the relations 
between the various sections of industry are made clear. In accordance with 
these relationships the banks supports ("finances") industry, supporting it with 
financial supplies. 

Ultimately should we be successful in duly organizing the whole business (and 
that is what our party and tlie Soviet Government, at the head of which our 
party stands, is striving for) it would result in the following state of things: 
they are united by means of central national banks, at which the threads of the 
separate enterprises meet, grotiped according to their respective specialties. The 
bank keeps an exact account of these enterprises and of all transactions effected 
between them which mutually countei-balance as one branch of production sup- 
plies products for another. In the bank, the book-keeping department of com- 
munal production, the general position of production is in this manner neg- 
lected. The centralized and nationalized banking business (that is to say, the 
united banking business that is in the hands of the workers' and iieasants' 
State) is converted into a communal book-keeping department of the socialist 
co-operative production. 

chaptee ix 
Industry to Belong to the Working Class. (Nationalization of Industry) ? 

Although the most important step towards obtaining the means of productioii ' 
from the hands of exploiters is, as we have seen above, the proletarian na- 
tionalization of banks, nevertheless, if industry, in factories and works, the 
power of the capitalists will still be maintained, no very desirable results wouM 
have been achieved. These enterprises wotild draw such sums as they reqtiircd 
from the bank, and the capitalists would calmly go on exploiting their workers, 
and would even manage to beg for State subsidies to be spent on all kinds of 
things. And therefore a transition to a Comumnist oider. which is unattainable 
without the nationalization of banks, is jttst as unattainable without the prole- 
tarian nationalization of all large industrial enterprises. 

In this direction, too, the working class and our party are taking such steps 
to enable us not only to break with the old, taking the reins of prodttction out 
of the hands of capitalists, but to create a new standard of relations. That is 
why the nationalization of industry must begin with large enterprises, namely, 
in the first place with the so-called syndicate. 

What is syndicated industry (industries united in syndicates)? Syndicates 
are huge industrial combines. When capitalist owners of various enterprises see 
that it is not worth their while to compete for each others clients, and that it 
is far more profitable to form a close union for the purpose of jointly fleecing 
the public, they organize syndicates or still closer combines of manufacturers, 


namely — trusts. Wlieu promoters are not united in sucli unions, each one tries 
to bring clown the prices of his rival ; each one wishes to win over his com- 
petitor's client, and this can only be done if he sells goods cheaper, thus ulti- 
mately ruining his rival, who is unable to withstand the competition. This sort 
of struggle between the rich manufacturt'rs invariably leads to the ruin of the 
smaller man; the big sharks of capitalism and the richest manufacturers come 
out victorious. Let us now suppose that in some one branch of industry (say the 
merallurgic) three or four big lirms remain. If one of them is stronger it 
•carries on the struggle until the rest are ruined. But supposing that their 
powers are approximately the same, then it is evident that a mutual straggle 
is fruitless : it will result in the exhaustion of all the rivals to an equal extent. 
In such cases we generally see an attempt to come to an understanding; they 
organize a union of these" enterprises and make an agreement not to sell their 
goods below a fixed price; they distribute the orders among themselves, or 
appoint one firm to do business in one pr.rt of the country and another firm in 
^another; in a word, they amicably divide the market between themselves. As 
the firms united into a syndicate usually supply nuich more than half products 
required for a given area, that means that the syndicate dominates over the 
market, and that the directors of the syndicates can fix very high prices and 
fleece their buyers like sheep. But once they join a union it is natural that they 
are comi>elled to form a joint board of management for the formerly separate 
enterprises and to keep a strict account of all the goods produced, to organize 
the distribution of orders, in a word, they are compelled to organize production. 
Not for the people, not for the sake of the buyer's advantage. Oh, no! Only 
for their own profits and gains, and for the sake of overcharging the worker 
and fleecing the buyer ; that is the real purpose for which capitalists form their 


It has now been made clear why the working class must first of all proceed 
to nationalize those branches of productiou which are syndicated. It is because 
such branches have already been organized by the capitalists, and such produc- 
tion, even when organized by capitalists, is easiest to deal with. It is, of 
course, necessary somewhat to modify the capitalist organizations, ridding them 
of the most obdurate enemies of the working class ; w^e must strengthen the 
po.sition of the workers in such a way that everything should be subjected to 
the workers ; and, in the process, abolish certain things altogether. Even a 
child can understand why such companies are easiest to conquer. Here the 
same thing is repeated as in the case of Government railroads ; being organized 
by a bourgeois Government, their management was, for that very reason, 
worked on a principle of centralization, and it was easier for the Workers' 
Government to take them into its own haiuls. 

In Western Europe (especially in Germany) and in th.e United States of 
America, practically tlse whole of production during the time of the war has 
fallen into the hands of the plundering bourgeois Government. The bourgeoisie 
■decided that it would never attain a victory unless the war was condr.cted in 
accordance with the latest dictates of science. And modern warfare dem-mds 
not only expenditure of money, but necessitates all production to be organized 
for the purpose of the war, a strict account being registered of everything, 
so that there be no waste and all things be correctly distributed. All this is 
possible when there is a central united management. It is needless to say that 
production is not organized for the benefit of the working class, but only for 
the purpose of conducting the war and of affording the bourgeoisie still more 
chances of enriching themselves. No wonder, then, that at the head of this 
system of penal servitude there stand generals, bankers, and the greatest 
exploiters. Nor is it surprising that the working class in those countries 
are oppressed and turned into white slaves or serfs. But, on the other hand, 
if the workers there succeed in shattering the machinery of the bourgeois 
State, it will be quite easy for them to take possession of the means of produc- 
tion and arrange it on a new plan ; they will have to drive the generals and 
bankers out, and put their own men everywhere ; but they will be able to use 
that apparatus tor checking and control that has been created for them by 
the vultures of capitalism. That is why it is infinitely harder for the Western 
European workers to hegin destroying the most powerful of bourgeois States, 
but it will be also much easier to conclude the task, having at their disposal 
tlie means of production organized by the bourgeoisie. 

The Russian bourgeoisie, seeing that its power was not very secure, and 
that the proletariat was near a victory, was afraid to start decisively along 
the road traced by the Western European bourgeoisie. It understood that, 
together with the Government power, organized production would fall into 


the hands of the working class. And therefore the Russian bourgeoisie did 
not care to improve its organization, but, on the contrary, strove to disorganize, 
and at the time of Kerensli.v, had recourse to sabotage as a means of ruining 

However it is to be noted tliat, even prior to the war, in Russia, partly owing 
to foreign capital, the most important spheres of industry were already 
syndicated. This especially applies to the so-called heavy branches of industry 
(coal mining, metallurgic industry, etc.). It is this heaA-y industry that must be- 
nationalized first (and this is already being done: production in the Ural 
district, for instance, being practically entirely nationalized). After that, the 
whole of big production should be nationalized. Together with the transfer of 
big industry into the hands of the Woi-kers' Government, the less important 
industries will also become dependent on the Government, because very many 
lesser industries depended to a great extent on the greater ones even before 
any nationalization took place. Sometimes these smaller firms are no more 
than branches of the larger concerns, depending on them for orders. In otlier 
cases they supply their products to the larger concerns ; in others they depend 
on the banks, and so on. Together with the nationalization of banks and of 
large industry, they immediately become dependent in some way or other 
upon nationalized production. Of course, there will still remain a number of 
small owners and proprietors of small home industries, etc. There are a 
great number of such in Russia. But, nevertheless, the basis of our industry 
is not the above named workshops, but the large scale industry, and the 
r\ationalization by the Workers' Government of this kind of production deals 
capitalism an irreparable blow. The banks and large scale industry are the 
two main fortresses of capitalism. Their expropriation, that is to say, their 
seizure by the working class and the Workers' Government, marks the end of 
capitalism and the beginning of Socialism. The means of production, that prin- 
cipal basis of human existence, is thereby taken out of the hands of a small 
number of exploiters and transferred into the hands of the working class and 
the Workers' and Peasants' Government. 

The Meusheviks and the Right Wing Socialist Revolutionaries, who do not 
wish to deviate one step from capitalism, and who are going hand in hand witli 
the bourgeoisie, are opposed to any kind of nationalization by the Soviet 
Government. That is because they are fully aware, as well as the bourgeoisie, 
that by nationalization a severe blow is dealt into the very heart of the 
capitalist order, so dear to them. They deliberately deceive the workers with 
tales of our "immaturity" for Socialism, of our industry being in a backward 
state, of it being quite impossible to organize, and so on. 

We have already seen that this is not the case at all. The backwardness 
of Russia is not in the small number of large enterprises — on the contrary, we 
have quite a number of such. Its backwardness consists in the fact that the 
whole of our industry occupies too little place in comparison with the vast areas 
of our rural districts. But in spite of this we must not belittle the importance 
of our industry, for it is a significant fact that the working class is carrying 
all the vital elements of the Revolution along with it. 

There is another curious circumstance to be noted. All the time when the 
Government was in the hands of the bourgeoisie, Mensheviks and Right Wing 
Socialist Revolutionaries, these latter drew up a programme of Government 
regulation of industry. They did not then lament over the backwardness of 
our country. At that time they considered it possible to organize industry. 
What is the reason for such change in opinion? It is simple enough. The 
Mensheviks and Right Wing Socialist Revolutionaries hold it necessary for 
the bourgcais State to organize production (in Western Europe this would be 
agreed to by Wilhelm, George and President Wilson) ; the party of the Com- 
munists, on the contrary, wants production to be organized by a proletarian 
Government. The thing is indeed simplicity itself. It is the same story all over 
again. The Mensheviks and Socialist Revolutionaries want to revert to capital- 
ism ; the Communists are going ahead to Socialism and Communism, and the 
most important step on the road towards Communism they consider to be the 
nationalization of banks and the nationalization of large-scale production. 


Communal Cultivation of Public Land 

The October Revolution accomplished that for which the Russian peasants 
had been striving during many centuries. It deprived the landowners of the 


land and transferred it into the hands of the peasants. The question now is 
how to allot this land. And here, too, we Communists must talce up the same 
position as we did regarding the question of arranging industrial produftion. 
riilike a factory, land can, of course, be divided. But what would be the 
result of dividing up land into private allotments amongst individual i^asants? 
The result would be that the man who had managed to save up a little money, 
being stronger and richer, would soon become a "personality" and turn into 
a shark, a land-grabber or a usurer; then he would aim still higher and l)egin 
buying up the land of those who were getting poorer. Before long the village 
would be again divided into big landowners and poor peasants, the latter having 
no alternative but to go to town in search of work or hire himself out to the 
rich landowner. 

These new landowners would not, it is true, belong to the gentry, being only 
rich peasants, but the difference is after all a small one. The exploiting peasant 
landowner is a real vampire; he will sweat the poor worker even harder than 
the representative of the degenerating, impoverished, and thoroughly incapable 

This shows us that the plan of dividing or sharing the land offers us no way 
out of the dilemma. The only solution is in a communal national holding of 
land ; in land being declared the conunon property of the laborers. The Soviet 
Government has made a law of socialization of land ; the land has in fact been 
taken from the landowners, and it has become the common property of the toiling 

But that is not enough. We must aim at such an arrangement as would ensure 
the land being not only owned in common, but also be cultivated in common. If 
that is not done, then no matter what you proclaim or whatever laws you 
publish, the result will be most unsatisfactory. One man will fuss about on 
his allotment, another on his, and if they continue to live apart without mutual 
aid and common work, they will gradually come to look upon the land as their 
private property, and no laws from above would be of any use. Common cultiva- 
tion of the soil is what should be aimed at. 

In agriculture, just as in industry, it is easiest to carry on production on a 
large scale. With large-scale production it is possible to use good agricultural 
machines effecting a saving of all kinds of material, to arrange the work accord- 
ing to one single plan, to put every workman to the most suitable job, and to 
keep a strict account of everything, thus preventing undue waste of either ma- 
terials or labor-power. Our task, therefore, does not at all consist in making 
every peasant a manager of his own small allotment, but in making the poorer 
peasants join a cfimniDn scheme of work on the largest possible scale. 

How is this to lie done? This can and must be done in two ways: first, co- 
operative cultivation of irhat were formerly hiy estates; and secondly, hij or- 
yanizing agricultural labor communes. 

In the estates of former landowners where the land was not leased to the 
peasant as a whole, and where there existed the private direction of the landlord, 
the estate was, of course, ever so much better managed than the peasants'. The 
evil was that the entire profits fell into the hands of the landowners, who 
oppressed the peasants. And here again there is one thing clear to the Com- 
munists ; just as there is no sense whatever in the factory workers plundering 
the factory plant, to share them between themselves, and ruining the factory, 
so would it be equally senseless for the peasants to act in the same manner on 
the land. On the l)ig private estates there is often much that is valuable: horses, 
cattle, different kinds of implements, stocks of seeds, reaping and other kinds of 
agricultural machines, and so on. In other estates, again, there are dairies, 
cheese churns, quite large works in fact. And it would be senseless to plunder 
all that and drag it away to the different cottages. The village exploiters would 
be interested in that, knov^'ing that sooner or later all these things would fall 
into their hands again, as they would buy up the poor men's shares. 

The exploiting country shark clearly understands that such a sharing will in the 
end be to his "benefit." But the interests of the poorest peasantry, of the prole- 
tariat, and of all those who eked out a poor living independently by selling their 
labor power, lie in quite another direction. For the poorest peasants it is far 
more profitable to deal with "the large estates in just the same way as the workers 
are dealing with the factories," that is, to take them under their control and 
management, to cultivate the former landowner's estates in common, and not 
plundering and carrying off the machines and plant, but using jointly such ma- 
chines and plant that formerly belonged to the landowners and have now become 
the property of the laborers. They could call to their aid agricultural experts,. 


competent men, to help them cultivate the land not in a casual way, but properly, 
so that it should yield not less than when it belonged to the landlord, but much 
more. It is not difficult to seize the land; neither did it prove difficult to seize 
private estates. It had to be done. In spite of all tliat the Socialist Revolu- 
tionaries and Mensheviks did to dissuade the peasants (pointing out the lawless- 
ness of such an action, and saying that the whole thing would be useless and 
i-esult only in bloodshed, and so on ) , the peasants, in spite of everything, took the 
land, and the Soviet Government helped them to do it. It is a far harder 
for the workers to retain the land, defending it from the exploiting village sharks 
whose eyes are already lighting up with greed at the prospect of seizing it. At 
this point the poorest peasants should remember that they must carefully guard 
the safety of communal property. For now the wealth that was formerly the 
landowner's has become the property of the whole community. It should be 
improved for the benefit of all the workers. Things should be organized in such 
a manner that the delegates of the poorest peasantry and of the laborers and 
those of the regional Soviets and their land departments, should have charge of 
everything, so as not to allow any waste, and should lend their assistance in the 
joint cultivation of the land. The more ordered the joint production in such 
estates will be, the better it will be for the workers. All this means that the 
land will yield better crops, the village exploiters will be foiled, and the pea.saut 
will be trained in co-operative production, the latter a most important principle of 

But it is not enough to preserve the estates of the former landowners and 
cultivate them on new principles. AVe must strive to organize hir(/e joint 
agriculfiiral labor communes by uniting separate allotments. For now the 
Government is in the hands of the workers and peasants. That means that 
this Government will, as far as it lies within its power, assist the peasants 
in any useful undertaking. It is only necessary for the poorest peasants and 
semi-proletariat, as well as the late farm hands, to manifest greater activity, 
more personal initiative. The weak, poverty-stricken peasants, working each 
one by liimself, can achieve nothing; they \\\\\ hardly be able to exist. But 
they will aitain a great deal once they begin to unify their allotments, jointly 
purchasing machinery with the aid of the town workers, and in this manner 
cultivating the land in common, on a basis of common interests. 

The town Soviets and economic organizations of the workers will assist 
such labor agricultural communes, supplying them with iron and manufactured 
goods, and they will help them by recommending land experts and competent 
men. And thus gradually the once poor peasant, who has never seen anything 
beyond his native town, will begin to be transformed into a comrade, who, 
hand in hand with others, will march along the road of communal labor. 

It has now been made clear that to organize matters in this direction we 
must have a solid organization of the poorest elements of peasantry. This 
organization must accomplish two principle tas-ks; the first is the struggle 
with the country sharks, usurers, former inn-keepers, in a woi'd, with the 
former bourgeoisie ; the second is the organization of agricultural production 
and the control over the distribution of land, the organization of labor com- 
munes and the management of the estates of former landowners with a view 
to their best possible utilization ; in other words, they must set before them- 
selves the groat task of a new reconstruction of land. The poorest peasantry 
should form such organizations in the shape of regional Soviets, and shoidd 
introduce into them special departments such as, for instance, a food supply 
department, a land department, and others. The land departments of the 
peasants' Soviets should form the chief support of the poorest elements of the 
peasantry in conned ion with the land question. To arrange matters on a 
firmer basis it woidd be best to construct these Soviet organizations in such 
a way that the local and neighboring factory workers should also have 
their representatives. Workmen are a moi'e experienced set of people than 
the peasants, they are used to joint business organizations, and are also more 
experienced in the struggle against the bourgeoisie. The factory workers 
will always help the village poor against the rich, and therefore the former 
will ever find in them their staunchest allies. 

The village poor should not allow tliemselves to be duped. They have 
fought and struggled for the land, and they have finally won it from the 
landlords. They miTSt see that they do not lose it again ! They must see 
that they do not let it slip through their fingers ! The danger is there if they 
are going to work in the direction of sub-dividing the land and sharing it out 
into private lots. The danger will vanish if the rural poor, together with 


tlie working class, go along the road of joint production on as large a scale as 
jidsi^ilile. Then we shall all proceed at top speed towards Communism. 

Chapter XI 
Workers' Management of Production 

Just as in connection with the land, the lef'ding part in the management in 
1 ^ various localities is gradually transferred to the organizations of poorest 
1! 'asantry and the different peasant Soviets and their departments, so is indus- 
trial management gradually heing transferred (which is exactly what our party 
expects) into the hands of the workers and peasants' government. 

Prior to the October revolution and in the period immediately following upon 
ir. the working class and our party put forward the demand for a workers' con- 
trol that is to say, for workers' supervision over factories and works to prevent 
rhe capitalists from making secret reserves of fuel and raw materials, to see 
that they did not cheat or speculate, damage goods or dismiss workers unjustly. 
A workers' supervision was instituted over production, as well as over the sale 
and purchase of products, raw materials, their storage, and the financing of 
enterprises. However, a mere supervision proved inefficient. Especially did this 
l)rove insufficient wdien the nationalization of production took place and the 
v:trious privileges of the capitalists were destroyed, and when enterprises and 
whole branches of Industry were transferred into the hands of the workers' and 
peasants' government. It is easy to see that a mere supervision is quite ineffi- 
cient, and that what is required is not only a workers' control but tvorkers' man- 
aricvient of industry; workers' organizations, w^orks' and factories' committees, 
trade unions, economic branches of the Soviets, of workers' deputies, and finally 
organs of the Workers' and Peasants' Government (such as special committees, 
Soviets of public economy, and so on). These are the organizations that should 
nor cinly supervise but should also manage. There is another thing that atten- 
tion should be drawn to here. 

Some of the workers who are not sufficiently imbued with the class-spirit 
argue as follows : w^e are here to take our factory into our own hands, and there 
is an end to the matter. Before, the factory was the property of, say, Mr. 
Smith ; now it is the property of the workers. Such a point of view is, of 
coui'se. wrong, and closely resembles dividing. Indeed, if a state of affairs came 
about in which every factory belongs to the workers of only that particular 
factory, the result would be a competition between factories : one cloth factory 
would strive to gain more than another, they would strive to win over eacli 
others customers ; tlie workers of one factory would be ruined whilst those of 
another would prosper ; these latter employ the workers of the ruined factory, and, 
in a word, we have again the old familiar picture ; just as in the case of the shar- 
ing out capitalism w^ould soon revive. 

How are we to fight against it? It is evident that we must build up such an order 
of workers' management of enterprises as would train the workers in the idea that 
every factory is the property not only of the workers of that particular factory, 
but of the tvhole working people. This can be attained in the following way. 
Every factory that works should have a board of management composed of 
workers in such a way that the majority of members should belong not to that 
factory in question, but should consist of w^orkers delegated by trade unions of 
the special branch of industry, by the Soviet of Workers' Deputies, and finally 
by the local Soviet of Public Economy. If the board is composed of workers and 
of employees (the workers must be in the majority, as they are more reliable 
adherents to Communism), and if the majority of workers should belong to 
other factories, then the factory will be managed in the manner required for 
turtliering the interests of all workers as a class. 

Every worker understands that works and factories cannot do without book- 
keepers, mechanics, engineers, etc. Therefore another task of the working class 
lies in enlisting these into their service. So far the working class could not 
produce such specialists from their own midst (but they will be able to do so 
when plans of general education will have been carried out successfully, and a 
special h-igher education will have become accessible to ever.vbody), until that 
time, of course, we shall have, willy-nilly, to pay higher wages to ordinary 
spejialists. Let them now serve the working class just as they formerly did the 
bourgeoisie. Formerly they were under the control and supervision of the 
1 uurgeoisie ; now they will have to be under the supervision and control of the 
workers and employees. 

94931— 40— app., pt. 1 13 


To ensure a smooth running of the wheels of industry it is indispensable, as 
we have already explained, to have one general plan. It is not enough for 
every large factory to have its own board of management consisting of workers. 
There are many factories and many branches of production ; they are all bound 
to one another, all inter-dependent : if the coal mine yields little coal the result 
will be that factories and railroads will be brought to a standstill ; if there is no 
petrol, navigation is impeded ; if no cotton, there will be no work to do for the 
textile factories. It is consequently necessary to form such an organization 
which should embrace all production, based on a general plan, and united with 
workers' boards of management of other works and factories; should keep an 
exact account of all requirements and reserves, not only of one town or of one 
factory, but for the whole country. The necessity for such a general plan is 
especially evident in the case of railroads. Any child can understand that the 
disorganization in the working of railroads causes incredible calamities: in 
Siberia, for instance, there is a sui>er-abundauce of bread, whilst Petrograd is 
on the verge of famine. Why is this? Because the bread is beyond the reach 
of the inhabitants of Petrograd, as it is impossible to transport it. To ensure 
regular traffic it is necessary that everything be strictly registered and correctly 
distributed. And this is only possible under one uniform plan. Let us imagine 
that one mile of the railroad is under one management, another is under a dif- 
ferent one, and a third under a third, and so on, all working independently 
of each other. An indescribable muddle would be the result. Such a muddle 
could be avoided only by conducting the railway through a single centralized 
management. Hence the necessity arises for such workers' organs and labor 
organizations, as would unite entire branches of production to each other, 
forming one complete whole, and which would also unite the work done in 
different parts of the country, as, for instance, Siberia and the Ural districts, 
the northern provinces, the centre, and so on. Such organs are in the course 
of construction ; they are the district and regional Soviets of Public Economy, 
sijecial committees uniting whole branches of production or commerce (as, for 
instance, Centro-texile, Centro-sugar, and so on), and over all the rest we have, 
as a central organization, the Supreme Council (Soviet) of Public Economy. 
All these organizations are connected with the Soviets of the workers' deputies 
and work in unison with the Soviet Government. Their staff is mainly com- 
posed of representatives of tcorkers' orf/anizaiions. and they are siipported by 
trade unions, works' and factories' committees, unions of employees, and so on. 

In this way gradually a irorkrrs' management of industry is being formed 
from the top of the ladder to the bottom. In the respective localities we have 
works' and factories' committees and the workers' board of management, and 
above those the region and district committees, and Soviets of Public Economy, 
and at the head of all these organizations we have the Supreme Council of 
Public Economy. The task of the working class now lies in enlarging and 
strengthening by all possible means the workers' management of industry, 
educating the vast masses of the people in this direction. The proletariat taking 
production into its own hands, not as the property of separate individuals or 
groups, but as the property of the whole working class, should concern itself 
with supporting the central and district workers' organizations by thousands of 
branches, at the various works and factories. If the higher organs of workers 
boards of management in the localities of production are not supported by the 
local ones, they will hover, as it were, in mid air, and become transformed into 
bureaucratic institutions devoid of any live revolutionary spirit. But, on the 
other hand, they will be enabled to cope with the terrible existing disorganiza- 
tion if they are supported on all sides by the vital forces of the workers in every 
locality, and every command of the workers' central organization will lie 
responded to and executed not as a matter of form, but as a matter of duty by 
the workers' organizations and by the working masses in their respective 
localities. The more the masses discuss matters for themselves, the more keen 
their interest in the election of their boards, the more work carried on at the 
works and factories, the greater the part they take in the business of doing away 
with all kinds of disorder and dishonesty — the sooner will the working class 
possess itself not only in word but in deed of the whole industrial production, 
thus realizing not merely a political, but even an eeonninie dieiaiorxhU) of flu' 
■irfyi-Jcwfj elasn. that is to say, the working class will become the actunl nvi^tei' 
not only of the army, the courts of justice, schools and other departments, hut 
it will also be at the bead of the management of ijirjdiietio}). Only then will 
the might of capital he completely rooted out, and the possibility for capital 
ever again to crush the working class under its heel be completely destroyed. 


chapter xii 
Bkead — Only fdr the Woekers. Compxjlsory Labor Service fob the Rich 

A transition to the communal order means a transition to an order where 
there will be no class difference between people, and where all will be coiu- 
mnnal icorkers and never hired laborers. It is necessary to pass immediately 
on to the oryanization of such an order. And one of the first steps in this 
direction on a parallel with a proletarian nationalization of banks and of 
industry, is the introduction of labor service for the rich. 

There are at present many ijeople who do nothing, create nothing, but consume 
that which others have made. And more than that, there are people who not 
only do no work, but whose whole activity is directed at hindering and inter- 
fering with the work of the Soviet Government and the working class. The 
Avorkers sflw with their own eyes the instance of the sabotage attempted by 
the Russian intellectuals, teachers, engineers, doctors and others of the "learned 
professions." It would be superfluous to mention the bigger game such as 
directors of factories and banks, the late high oflicials, etc. They all made 
efforts to disorganize and destroy at the i-oot the work of the proletariat and 
the Soviet Government. The task of the proletariat consists in cmnpelling 
these bourgeoisie, former landowners, and numerous intellectuals of the well- 
to-do classes to work for the common good. How is this to be done? By means 
of introducing lahor record books and labor service. Every one of the above- 
named class should receive a special book in which an account is kept of his 
work, that is to say, of his compulsory service. Fixed entries in his book 
entitle him to buy or receive certain food products, bread in the first place. 
Anyone who refuses to work, supposing he sabotages (an ex-official, a former 
manufacturer or landowner who cannot possibly accustom himself to the idea 
of the loss of land on which he has lived for years and has become a frenzied 
enemy of the workers), if such an individual refuses to work there is nO' 
corresponding entry in his book. He goes to the store, but is told, "There is 
nothing for you. Please to show an entry confirming your work." 

Under such a system the mass of idlers who fill the Nevsky Prospect of 
Petrograd and the main street of other big towns, will have to set to work 
against their will. It is i>erfectly understood that the carrying into execution' 
of this kind <>f labor service will be hindered by many obstacles. The upper 
and upper-middle classes will, on the other hand, make every endeavor to evade- 
this compulsory service, and on the other hand, try by every means within their 
power to hinder such an order. To arrange matters so that certain food 
products should be obtained only on producing a corresponding entry in the 
labor book, and that such products .should not be distributed in any other way, 
is not an easy matter. The rich who possess money (and money means merely: 
counters for obtaining products) have also a thousand possibilities of deceiving 
the Soviet Government and duping the workers and poorest peasantry. These 
possibilities must be destroyed by a well-regulated organization for supplying 

Of course labor service for the rich should only be a transitory stage towards 
(jenenii labor service. The latter is necessary not only because the productveness 
of our trade and agriculture can be increased by enlisting the service of all 
members of society fit for work, but also because a strict account of labor power 
and a proper distribution of such over the various branches of production and 
the different undertakings is neces.sary. Just as in war time it is necessary, 
on the one hand, to mobilize all the forces, and on the other to keep account of 
and properly organize them, so in the war ivifh economic disoryanisaiiO'n it is 
necessary to draw all the useful sections of the population into the work, 
register and organize them into one great army of labor with a labor discipline 
and a proper understanding of its duties. 

At the pre.sent moment in Russia, in consequence of the economic disorganiza'- 
tion and shortage of raw material which has been intensified by the occupatioru 
of South Russia and Ukraine by the forces of German Imperialism, there is a 
considerable amount of unemployment. As a result we are faced with the 
following situation : we know that we can only win through by the aid of 
human labor power, from the fact that only labor can increase the productivity 
of our industry and agriculture; and of this human labor power we have plenty. 
But in spite of that there is no opportunity to apply this labor power. There 
is already a large amount of unemployment as a result of the shortage of fuel 
and raw material. Where then shall we place these people whom the Workers' 


and Peasants' Government intends to compel to work? It is true that one of 
the most important questions is the organization of public works and construc- 
tion of such things of supreme social importance as railways, grain elevators, 
and the opening of new mines. But it is evident that this work could not at 
once absorb the large surplus of labor that exists. 

Thus it will be necessary fr-om the very first to limit ourselves to registering 
the working hands, noting their respective compulsory service only at the request 
of the Soviet Government, or working class bodies superintending the manage- 
ment of production. Let us illustrate this by an example. Supposing that 
for surveying new mines in Siberia engineering specialists are required. The 
metallurgic department of the Soviet of Public Economy puts forward a demand 
for such. The department for registering labor power examines its lists and 
finds the people who correspond to the kind required, and these are then ohUycd 
to go where the above-mentioned departments choose to send them. 

Naturally, as the organization of production becomes more ordered, and the 
demand for labor increases, so will compulsory service be carried into effect; 
that is to say, all persons capable of work will be compelled to do their share 
of work. 

Compulsory labor service in itself is not a new idea. At the present moment, 
in practically all the warring countries, the Imperialist Governments have in-.^ 
troduced labor service for their population (in the first instance, of course, for 
the oppressed classes). But the labor service introduced in Westeni Europe 
is as far removed from that which ought to be introduced by us as is heaven 
from earth. In the Imperialist States such service means the complete suhju- 
gation of the working class, its complete enslavement to financial capital and 
the plundering Government. And why is that? Simply because the workers 
do not govern themselves but are governed by generals, bankers and big syndi- 
calists and bourgeois politicians. The worker there is a mere pawn in their 
hands. He is a serf whom his master can dispose of as he pleases. No wonder 
that compulsory service in the West at the present time means a new contri- 
bution, a new ^feudal levy, the institution of a new system of military hard 
labor. It is introduced there for the purpose of enabling the capitalists, whose 
pockets are being filled by the labor of the workers, to carry on an interminable 
plundering war. 

Our workers themselves must, through their own organizations, introduce and 
carry out compulsory labor-service on the basis of self government by the work- 
ers. There is no bourgeoisie over them here. On the contrary, the workers 
are noto placed over the bourgeosie. Controlling, accounting, and distributing 
labor power is now the concern of tlie workers' oryaiiizations, and as compulsory 
labor service will affect the rural districts, it will become the concern of the 
peasants Soviets, which will stand over the village bourgeoisie, subjugating it 
to their ride. All the organs dealing with labor will be purely workers* organs. 
This is quite natural : if the administration of industry is to become a workers' 
administration, the management of labor must also be in the hands of the work- 
ers, for that is only part of the management or administration of production. 

The working class, which wishes to take the lead in the economic life of the 
country (and which will do so in spite of any obstacles), the class that is becom- 
ing master of all the wealth, is confronted with this main question — the organi- 
zation of prodiietiov. The organization of production demands in its turn the 
solution of two principal problems : the organization of the means of production 
(accounting, controlling, and correct distribution of fuel, raw material, machin- 
ery, instruments, seeds, etc.), and the organization of labor (accounting, con- 
trolling and correct distribution of labor power). In order to utilize thoroughly 
all the forces of society, compulsory labor service, which will sooner or later 
be introduced by the working class is indispensable. Idlers must vanish ; only 
useful social workers will remain. 


A Systematic Distribution of Products. The Abolition of Trade, Profits, 
AND Speculation. Co-operative Communes 

It is impossible to take possession of production properly without taking control 
of the distribution of products. When products are wrongly distributed there 
can be no projier production. Supposing that the largest branches of industry 
are nationalized. As we have seen above, one branch of production works for 
another. To make production systematic it is necessary that each branch should 


be supplied with as much material as it requires; one enterprise getting more, 
another less. That means that each product should be distributed regularly, 
according to plan, in correspondence with the demands of the branches in question. 
The various organs of supply, that is to say, such working organizations as deal 
with distribution of pioducts, must be in direct communication with the organs 
dealing with its production. Only then can the work of production run smoothly. 

But there are some products that are directly used by the consumer. Such as 
bread, for instance, many food products, the greater part of clothing materials, 
many India ruliber products (no factory buys goloshes, which enter into direct 
use of the consumer), and so on. Here an equally strict account and a just distri- 
bution of these products among the population is necessary. And such a just 
distribution is absolutely impossible without a definite plan being carried into 
execution. First, the quantity of goods must be registered, then the demand for 
fhem, and after that the products must be distributed according to these calcida- 
tious. Tlie best instance of the necessity of an organized plan is the food question, 
the question of bread. At present the bourgeoisie, the village sweaters, the 
Right Social Revolutionaries, the IMensheviks, the well-to-do land grabbing peas- 
ants, have all raised a hue and cry about repealing the bread monopoly, and 
that speculators, big and small, the wholesale dealers and myesochniki ' should 
be allowed to cairy on their trade as they like. It is easy to understand why 
the tradesmen are interested in the repeal of the bread monopoly ; in some way 
or another this monopoly hinders them from fleecing the consumer. On rhe 
other hand, it is quite clear that the present state of things is absurd; the rich 
calmly go on eating white bread, buying it in smuggler fashion ; that they have 
black bread in plenty there is no question. They just pay considerably more and 
get everything they want. Who helps them in thisV The speculators, of course. 
What they are anxious about is not to feed the population, bui to grab a little more 
money, to stuff a little more into their pockets, and it is, of course, the rich, not 
the poor, that can give more. That is why the speculators bring bread not to 
those localities where it is most needed, but to where they get paid most. And, 
so far, it has not been possible to put an end to this. Hence it is clear that to 
organize a systematic distribution of bread, the bread monopoly must be left 
intact, as well as the food committees and the hoards of food, and further, this 
monopoly must be carried out in the strictest manner, speculators must be dealt 
with without mercy, private traders must be made to undei'stand that they dare 
not make money out of a national calamity, disturl)ing the general plan. The 
trouble at the present time is in the fact that the bread monopoly is imperfectly 
carried out, while contraband private trading is thriving, and not in the fact that 
there is a monopoly. And that, at a time when there is so little bread, when the 
Germans have occupied the richest provinces; at a time when in many places 
grain stored for seeds has been eaten up, when the fields remain uncultivated and 
people are starving! Every piece of bread is precious, every pound of flour and 
grain is priceless. And just for this very reason everything must be strictly 
registered, so that not a crumb be wasted, and that all the bread be distributed 
evenly, and that the rich should not be privileged in any way. This, we repeat, 
can be done and will be attained if the workers only set to work promptly, if 
they aid the working organizers in their task, if they help to catch speculators 
and cheats. 

Unfortunately, there are quite a number of people not filled with class spirit, 
who make purchases at their own risk independently of the working organizations, 
thereby also increasing the disorganization of the general plan. Each one thinks 
to himself: "No matter what you say, I can mind my own business best" — and 
off he goes to buy bread. Later on, conflicts are apt to arise on the way, on 
account of this very bread, and then he complains : "They don't give you a chance 
to look after yourself." As a matter of fact the whole affair looks somewhat like 
this : let us imagine a train going, packed full ; some passengers are standing in 
the corridors, others lying on the floors — in a word there is not enough room to 
drop a pin. Then all of a sudden one man smells something burning, raises a cry 
of "fire," and dashes like mad towards the door, pushing i)eople aside. The 
people, panic stricken, try to break open the door, a wild scuffle ensues, they bite 
and hit each other, break one another's ribs, trample children underfoot. The 
result is — dozens of killed, wounded, maimed. Is that right? It might all have 
been quite different. If reasonable people had been found to reassure the crowd, 

^ The term "mysochnik" comes from a Russian word which means a sack, and is 
applied to petty food speculators who carry flour, bread, etc., from the country Into tbe 
towns in sacks. 


to calm it, everyone would have walked out iu order without a scratch! Why 
did everything hapiien in the way it did? Because each one thought: he will act 
for himself, the others are "no concern of mine." But in the end it is he who gets 
his neck broken first. 

The very same thing takes place with those who buy bread independently, 
infringing the regulations of the workers' food organizations. Each one thinks 
that he will make things easier for himself. But what is the result? Every such 
purchase upsets the systematic registering of the stock in hand : owing to these 
purchases the regular delivery of bread becomes impossible. One locality, for 
instance, where there is absolute starvation, must have bread delivered at the 
expense of another, where things are comparatively better. But, instead some 
people from the latter locality buy up all the bread and take it with them. The 
former locality is thus left to starve to death. What follows? As the organized 
public purchases have become disorganized there appears on the scene the maraud- 
ing speculator. He at once begins to try his hand at private purchases. In this 
manner the unintelligent poor, lacking in class consciousness, not understanding 
things themselves, aid and abet the vampire speculator, whose real place is on 
the gallows. Now we can understand why these speculating gentry exploit the 
natural dissatisfaction of the hungry against the Soviet Government, and why 
the greatest scoundrels and sweaters often stand at the head of risings against 
the Soviets in small provincial towns. Workers should understand once and for 
all that salvation is not to be attained by a return to the old order, but by ways 
which lead forward towards the destruction of speculation towards the annihila- 
tion of private trade, towards the social distribution of products by the workers' 

The same holds good concerning a whole series of other products. The working 
class ought not to sufCer in order that the rich may get everything for extra prices, 
but, on the contrary, must put an end to the profiteering speculators who, like the 
hungry ravens, come flocking from all directions. A just, regulated distribution of 
products, on the basis of registering the demands and reserves, is one of the 
fundamental tasks confronting the working class. What does this mean? It 
means the nationalization of trading, that is, in other words, the aholltion of 
trading, for the transition to social distribution cannot exist side by side with 
dealer.s and agents who live like parasites and completely upset the work of 
supply. Not back to "free private trading," that is to say, to "free" robbery, but 
towards an exact, regulated distribution of products by workers' organizations— 
this should be the watchword of the intelligent workers. 

In order to carry out this plan into execution more successfully a compulsory 
union of the whole population into co-operative communes must be aimed at. 
Only then can products be justly distributed, when the population that is to get 
them is united and organized into large groups, whose demands can be exactly 
estimated. If the population, instead of being united and organized, is scattered, 
it becomes extremely difBeult to carry out this distribution in a more or less 
orderly way ; it is difficult to calculate how much of each article is needed, what 
and how much is to be delivered, how, that is, through what agency the distribu- 
tion is to be effected. Let us imagine that the population is united into co-opera- 
tive communes according to their parishes. Every town or parish, say, is united 
into one co-operation which is in its turn united with the house committees. 
Then a given product is first distributed to such communes, and these, having cal- 
culated beforehand what product and of what quality they require, they distribute 
it through their agents, among the different consumers. 

In uniting the population into such co-oi>erative communes the already existing 
co-operative societies will be of great importance. The wider the sphere of work 
of the co-operatives, the wider the circle of the population included, the more 
organized will the distribution of products become, and the more frequently will 
these co-operatives be changed into organs of supply for the whole population. 
Compulsory communes around already existing co-operatives; such, in all 
probability, will be the most convenient form of the organization of distribution, 
by the aid of which it will be ultimately possible to supplant trade and do away 
once for ever with private profit. 

To make the task of a regular distribution of products still easier, we must 
aim at changing our private system of domestic economii into a social one. At 
present every family has its own kitchen, every family, independently of others, 
buys provisions, dooming woman to slavery, turning her into an eternal cook 
who sees nothing from dawn till night except kitchen utensils, brushes, dusters, 
and all kinds of refuse. An innnense amount of labor is absolutely wasted. If 
we united and organized housekeeping, beginning with the supply and prepara- 


tion of food (by means of joint purchases of provisions, cooking, construction of 
large model restaurants, etc.). it would be much easier to keep an account of the 
demandis of various households, and besides tlie saving of money tluis effected, 
the regular genei'al distribulion would be greatly assisted. 

One of the most viral questitms for the consumer, and a very painful one for 
the town laborers, is the housino question. The poor are here mercilessly ex- 
ploited. And on the other hand landlords used to make heaps of money on the 
business. The expropriation of this kind of property, a transfer of houses and 
of various kinds of residential premises, their registering and the regular dis- 
tribution of flats and rooms, the transfer of this work into the hands of the 
local workers' committee and of the organs of the Soviet Government is a difficult 
but grateful task. We have had enough of the lording of the better classes ! The 
worker, the poor toiler, has also a right to a warm room and to a living as 
befits a human being. 

In this way must economic life gradually be organized. The working class 
must organize production. The working class must organize distribution. The 
working class to organize consinnption — food, clothes, and housing — there is an 
nccounf kept of everything, everything is distributed in the most reasonable way. 
T'here are no master.s — there is the self administration of the working class. 

chapter xiv 

Labor Discipline of thei Working Class and of the Poorest Elements of the 


To organize production so that life should be possible without masters, to 
organize it on a fraternal basis, is a very good thing, but it is easier said than 
done. We meet with munberless difficulties : in the first place we are now stand- 
ing face to face with the heritage of the unfortunate war — a ruined country. 
The working class is now obliged to clear up the mess made by Nicholas Romanoff 
and his servants — Stunner. Sukhomlinolf, Protoppopoff, a mess which was later 
increased by Gutchkofl: and Rodzianko with their servants — Kerensky, Tzeretelli, 
Dan. and the rest of the treacherous company. Secondly, the working class are 
now compelled to organize production whilst reijelling the blows of their greatest 
enemies : on the other hand, those who are attacking them with savage hatred 
from without, as well as those who are attempting to destroy the Workers' 
■Government from within. 

In order to emei-ge victorious under such conditions, to conquer once and for 
•ever, the workers must struggle against their own inertia. Whilst organizing a 
lahor (irriuj. it is at the same time imperative to create a revolutionm'y labor 
(li.scipUne in this army. The fact of the matter is that there are still such indi- 
viduals among the workers who do not yet believe that they have now become 
masters of the situation. We want them to understand that at the present time 
the State Exchequer belongs to the workers and the peasants : the factories are 
national factories, the land is the land of the people, forests, machinery, mines, 
factory plant, houses, evory thing has been transferred into the hands of the 
working class. The administration over all this is a toorkers' ndnmmtration. 
The attitude of the workers and peasants towards all this wealth cannot now 
be the same as it was before; before it belonged to the masters, now all this 
wealth belongs to the people. The masters used to sweat the workers to the 
utmost. The landowner who lived like a lord fleeced the poor peasant and farm 
laborer as bare as he could. Both the worker and the farm laborer were there- 
fore right when they did not consider themselves bound to do their best under 
the master's whip, for the sake of strengthening the might and power of their 
tormentors. This is why there can be no question whatever of a labor discipline 
when the whip of the capitalist is brandished over the workmen's head and the 
whip of the landowner over that of the peasant and farm laborer. Things are 
quite different now. These whips have now been destroyed. The working class 
is now working for itself, it is now not making money for the capitalists, but 
working in the people's cause, in the cause of the toiling masses which were 
previously held in bondage. 

But nevertheless, we repeat, there still are workers lacking class spirit who 
do not seem to see all this. Why is that? Because they have been slaves too 
long. Slavish servile thoughts ever crowd in their brain. Perhaps they think, 
at the bottom of their hearts, that they cannot possibly exist without God and 
i\ master. And consequently they use the revolution to their own ends, trying to 
fill their pockets, to grasp where they can, and what they can, never stopping to 


thiuk of their labor duties nor of the fact that slovenliness and cheating at wort 
at present is a crime against the ivoikitKj class. For labor does not now serve to 
enrich a master ; labor now supports the workers — the poverty-stricken classes 
who are now at the helm of State. The indifferent workman now does not injure 
directors or bankers, but members of workers' administration, workers' unions, 
and the Government of the workers and peasants. To handle machinery care- 
lessly, to break tools, to try and get little work done in the ordinary working 
hours for the purpose of working overtime and receiving double pay — by all this 
it is not the master who is cheated, it is not the capitalist who is harmed, but 
the working class as a whole. The same thing applies to the land. He who 
steals farming implements which have been registered by the farm laborers and 
peasants, robs the society and not the landowner, who has been driven out a 
long time ago. The man who cuts down timber despite the prohibition of the 
peasants' organizations is thereby robbing the poor. Any man who, instead of 
cultivating the land taken from the landowner, is engaged in bread speculation 
or secret distilling, is a cheat and a criminal against the workers and peasants. 

Now it is quite evident to everyone that, for setting in order and organizing 
production, it is necessary for the workers to organize themselves and create 
their own labor discipline. At the factories and works the workers must them- 
selves see to it that every comrade should tuin out as much as is required. 
Professional workers' unions and the Soviets of the workers are in direct super- 
vision of production. They may, when possible, shorten the working day, and 
we mean to aim at such excellent organization of production as to make it 
possible for each set of workmen to work only six instead of eight hours. But 
these very same workers' organizations, as well as the workers' Government and 
the working class as a whole, may and she mid expect of their members the most 
conscientious devotion to their work. The workers' organizations, especially 
labor unions, should themselves fix the average output, that is to say, the amount 
of work that must be performed by every workman during one working day : 
he who does riot execute the required quantity, allowance of course being made 
for sickness and weakness, is sabotaging, undermining the work of constructing 
a new social order, and hinders the working class in its progress towards i^erfect 

Production is a vast machine, every part of which must be in perfect harmony 
with the other, all working equally well. An imperfect tool in the hands of a good 
workman is worthless, and so is a good tool in the hands of an inefficient one. 
What we want is a good tool and a good workman. 

Therefore we should strain our powers to the utmost to organize the supply 
of fuel and raw material, to organize transpoi-t and to distribute this fuel and 
raw material properly, at the same time taking measures for self-discipline and 
a proper training of the working masses to conscientious labor. 

It is more difficult to do this in Russia than in any other country. The work- 
ing class (and this applies in a still greater degree to the peasantry) have not 
gone through a long stage of organized training as the Western European and 
American workers have. We have among our mnnber many woi'kers who are 
only just becoming workers, who are only just getting accustomed to rollectivo 
social work, who are only now learning that to say "other people's business is no 
concern of mine" is not the proper sentiment for a workman to express. This 
kind of workman will always tend to disturb the harmony of social labor. The 
more we have of the kind who still nurse the idea of becoming their own masters, 
or saving a little money and starting a shop, the harder will be our task of carry- 
ing through real labor discipline. But foi- this very reason must those in tlie 
vanguard of the I'evolution, pioneers and labor organizations, grow more and 
more determined to establish and strengthen such discipline. If this is a success 
will become possible to organize everytliing else and for the working class to 
emerge victorious out of the difficulties created by the war, by disorganization and 
sabotage, and all the barbarity and atrocities of the capitalist order. 

chaptee xv 

The End of the Power of Money. "State Finance" and Financial Economy 

IN THE Soviet Republic 

Money at the present time represents the means of obtaining goods. Tlius 
those who have much money can buy many things ; they are rich. However low 
the rate of money falls, it is always easier to live for the man who has much of it. 
The rich classes who even now have an abundance of money can live at their 


.-as.'. In towns, traders, merchants, capitalists and speculators : in the country 
The "kulaks" (rich peasants), the sharks and sweaters who have fattened on 
tliH wai- to an incredible degree, having saved hundreds of thousands of roubles. 
Things have reached such a pitch that some buried their money in the ground in 
boxes or glass jars. 

The workers" and peasants' State, on the other hand, is in need of money. 
Additional issues of paper money depreciates its value: the more paper money 
is printed the cheaper it gets. And yet the works and factories must be main- 
tained by these paper tokens ; workers must be paid, the administration must be 
kept going, the employees must get their wages. Where is the money to come 
f!om? To get the money it is necessary first of all to tax the rich. An income 
inid property fax. that is to say, a tax on big profits and on large property, must 
be the principal tax; a tax on the rich, a tax on those who receive a surplus 

But at the present time, when everybody is living through a revolutionary fever, 
when it is diflScult to arrange for the regular imposition of taxes, any means of 
obtaining money is reasonable and admissible. For instance, the following is 
quite an excellent measure. The Government declares that up to a certain date 
all money must be exchanged for new. and that the old money has lost its value. 
That means that everybody must empty his boxes and jars and cupboards and 
bring his hoard to the bank to be exchanged. And here the following system 
should be carried out; the savings of poor people must be untouched, a new 
rouble being paid for every old one ; but begiiniing with a certain sum a part must 
be deducted for the benefit of the State. And the larger the amount of money 
saved up, the greater will be the sum retained. Let us propose the following 
scheme: up to 5000 the exchange is to be a rouble for a rouble; of the following 
5000 a tenth part is deducted ; from the third 5000 a seventh part ; from the 
fourth a fourth part ; from the fifth a half : from the sixth three-quarters ; and 
beginning with a definite sum, the whole is confi.'icated. 

Thus the power of the rich would be considerably undermined, additional 
means for the needs of the Workers' State would be obtained, and everybody 
would be more or less equalized with regard to income. 

In a time of revolution the imposition of contrihutions on the bourgeoisie is 
justifiable. It is certainly not at all advisable for one local Soviet to tax the 
bourgeoisie according to one system, whilst the other does so in accordance with 
another system, and a third according to a third. Tliis would be as bad as if 
there were varying forms of levying taxes in a given locality. 

We must strive towards a uniform system of taxation, suitable for the whole 
Soviet Republic. But if in the meantime we have not been able to build up such 
machinery, contributions are admissible. There is a Russian proverb which says : 
"When you can't get fish, a lobster will do." We mi;st bear in mind that the 
duty of the party and of the Soviets, as well as that of the working class and the 
poorest peasantry, consists in uniting and centralizing on one definite plan, the 
collection of taxes, thereby systematically driving the bourgeoisie out of their 
economic stronghold. 

We must, however, note that the moi-e successful the organization of produc- 
tion on new labor principles, the more will the importance of money decrease. 
Formerly, when private enterprises were the dominating institution, these private 
enterprises sold their goods to one another. The tendency now is for various 
branches of industry to unite and become different departments of general social 
production. Products may be exchanged between the different departments 
simply by a process of book-keeping without the need of using money at all. 
This method is acrually in process between the different branches of capitalistic 
trusts or combines. 

Combined enterprises are those which embrace several varying branches of 
production. In America, for instance, there are enterprises which own metal 
works, coal mines, iron mines, and steamship companies. One branch of the 
enterprise supplies the other with raw materials or transports its manufactured 
products. But all these separate branches represent but part of one enterprise. 
It is. of course, imderstood that one part does not sell its products to another 
branch of the enterprise, but distributes it according to the orders of the central 
head oflice of the various departments. Or let us take another example: the 
works of one department transfer the half-finished product to another, yet 
n-ithin the works no kind of purchase and sale transaction takes place. The same 
sort of things will be established in the general plan of production. The main 
branches of production will be organized into huge social enterprises under the 
management of the workers. A systematic distribution of the necessary means 


of production will take place between the different branches ; this will include 
fuel, raw materials, half-finished products, auxiliary materials, and so on. And 
that will mean that money will lose its importance. Money is important only 
when production is unorganized ; the more organized it becomes the smaller 
becomes the part played by money, and the need for it gradually decreases. 

What about the woi-kers' pay? we shall be asked. The same thing will hold 
good here. The better production is organized by the working class, the less will 
social workmen be paid in money and the more they will be paid in kind, that 
is to say, in products. We have already spoken of co-operative communes and of 
labor registers. Products required by workers will be issued without any money 
whatever, simply upon the evidence that such and such a man has worked and is 
working; they will be given out by the co-operative stores in accordancf' with 
such entries in the labor registers. This, of course, cannot be organized all at 
once. It will be long before we are able to organize this into proi:>er working 
order. It is a new plan that has never been worked before, and is therefore 
exceptionally difficult to carry out. But one thing is clear : in proportion as the 
worker.s come into possession of production and distribution, the need of money 
will become less and less, and subsequently will gradually die out altogether. 

An "exchange" of goods must then begin between town and countrij, without 
the agency of money; municipal industrial organizations send out textile, iron 
and other goods into the country, while the village district organizations send 
bread to the towns in exchange. Here, too. the importance of money will \ye les- 
sened in proportion as the town and country labor organizations of the workers 
and peasants become more closely united. 

But at present, at this very moment, the workers' Government needs money, 
and needs it badly. That is because the organizations of production and di.^tri- 
bution is only just getting into working order, and money still plays a most 
important part. Finances, including income and expenditure of State money, are 
at present of the utmost importance. And that is why the question of taxes is sa 
acute at the present time ; they must be exacted by every means. The confisca- 
tion of surplus incomes of Ihe town and country bourgeoisie is inevitable, as i? 
also periodical taxation. 

But in the future taxation will also become obsolete. To the extent that pro- 
duction becomes nationalized, .so capitalists' profits cease: as there are no more 
landowners the so-called land tax is abolished. Property holders are deprived of 
their houses, and thus another source of taxation is gone. Superfluous wealth 
is confiscated, the rich are losing their main support, and the whole population 
is gradually becoming employed by the proletarian State organizations. (Later 
on, with complete Communism, when there is no State, [jeople, as we have seen, 
will become equal comrades, and the very memory of the division of society into 
bourgeoisie will vanish.) 

When such a state of things exists it will be much simpler to deduct the neces- 
sary taxes immediately from salaries than to deduct considerable sums in the 
way of taxes or dues. It is not worth while spending both time and money on 
the senseless transaction of giving with one hand and taking away with the other. 

We have seen, on the other hand, that when production and distribution are 
thoroughly organized, money will play no part whatever and as a matter of no kind of money dues will be demanded from anyone. Money will have 
generally become unnecessar.v. Finance will become extinct. 

We repeat that that time is a long way off yet. There can be no talk of it in 
the near future. For the present we must find means for public finance. But we 
are already taking steps leading to the abolition of the money system. Society 
is being transformed into one huge labor organization or company to produce 
and distribute what is already produced without the agency of gold coinage or 
paper money. The end of the power of money is imminent. 


No Trade Communication Between the Russian Bourgeoisie and Foreign 
iMPERiAijsTS. ( Nation alizaton of Foreign Trade) 

At the present time every countr.y is surrounded b.v other countries on which 
it depends to a considerable extent. It is very difficult for a country to manage 
without foreign trade, because the country produces more of one protluct than 
another, and vice versa. Blockaded Germany is now experiencing how hard it 
is to do without a supply from other countries. And should England, for instance, 
be surrounded by as close a ring as is Germany, it would have perished long ago. 


The Russian industry, nationalized by tli«^ working class, cannot possibly dis- 
pense with certain goods from abroad, and on the other hand, foreign countries, 
especially Germany, are badly in need of raw material. We must not forget even 
for a minute that we live in the midst of rapacious capitalist States. Naturally 
enough these plundering States will try to obtain everything that they require 
to further their aims of plunder. And the Russian bourgeoisie, that has been so 
hedged in and persecuted in Russia, will be very glad to enter into direct contact 
with foreign Imperialists. There is no doubt whatever that the foreign bourgeoisie 
could pay the Russian speculators even more than does our own home-made, 
true-Russian patriotic bourgeoisie. A speculator, as we know, sells to him who 
pays the most. And so we have only to give our bourgeois the chance of exporting 
goods abroad, and foreign plunderers the possibility of arranging their little 
business atfairs here, and the Socialist Soviet Republic would have little cause 
to rejoice at the results. 

Formerly, when the question of foreign trade arose, the discussion confined 
itself to two points; whether high import duties on foreign goods were necessary 
or whether they should be abolished altogether; that is to say, Protection or 
Free Trade. During the last years of the reign of capital, capitalists were very 
active in carrying out the policy of Protection. Thanks to this the trusts received 
additional profit. Having no competitors or rivals within the country, they were 
the monopolists of the home market, the high wall of import duties protected 
them from foreign competitors. In this way, by the aid of high duties, the 
syndicalists, that is the biggest sharks of capital, could fleece their countrymen 
shamelessly. Making use of this double extortion of their countrymen, the syn- 
dicalists began to export goods abroad at extremely cheap prices in order to 
displace or remove their rival syndicalists of other countries from their path. 
Xatuially these cheap prices were only temporary. As soon as they had removed 
their rivals they immediately raised the prices in the newly-conquered markets. 
It was in order to carry out this policy that they required high customs tarifEs. 
In raising a cry about the defence of industry the syndicalists were really 
clamoring for a' means of attack, for means of economic conquest of foreign 
markets. And as always happens in such cases, these professional imposters on 
the people were disguising their plunder by a pretence of guarding the national 

A few Socialist.s seeing this, put forward the demand for Free Trade between 
the different countries. That would have meant everything being left to the 
chances of a free economic struggle between individual bourgeoisie. But this 
war cry was left to hover in mid-air; it was simply of no use to anybody. For 
what syndicalist would reject a proposition of additional profit? And since he 
received this additional profit only owing to his being immune from foreign com- 
petition thanks to the high customs tariff, how do you expect this syndicalist 
to reject such high duties? First of all it is imperative to overthrow the syn- 
dicalists. Our first object is a Socialist Revolution. This is how the question 
was answered by true Socialists, by Communist Bolsheviks, as we now call them. 
And a Socialist Revolution means the institution of such an order where every- 
thing is in the hands of an oryanized ^tatc of the icorking class. We have seen 
what harm private trade causes within the country: the harm done by this kind 
of trade between different countries is not less. In other words, abolishing Free 
Trade within the country whilst establishing it abroad is sheer nonsense. Equally 
absurd, from the point of view of the working class, is the system of taxation of 
foreign capitalists. A third way out is wanted, and this consists in the nationali- 
zation of foreifj)! trade hi/ the proletarian State. 

What does this mean? It means that no one who lives upon Russian soil has 
a right to make business agreements with foreign capitalists. If anyone is 
caught at it, he should be fined or Imprisoned. The whole of the foreign trade is 
carried on by the Workers' and Peasants' Government. The latter carries out 
all transactions whenever occasion arises. Suppo.sing American machines are 
being offered In exchange for certain goods or for a certain amount of money or 
gold, whilst some Germans offer the same machines at a different price and on 
different terms. The workers" organizations (Government Soviet organizations) 
consider whether it is necessary to make the purchase and of whom it should 
be more advantageous to buy. In accordance with their decision the machines 
are bought in the place and upon terms which are the most profitable. Products 
bought in the manner are distributed to the liopulation without any profits being 
made out of them, because the transaction is carried out not by capitalists to 
make money out of the workers, but by the workers themselves. In this manner 
the domination of capital would be abolished hi this department as well. The 


workers must take the business of foreign trade (as tliey liave done and are 
doing) into their own hands and organize it so that not a single swindler or 
speculator or shop-keeper should be able to evade the workers' watchfulness. 

It is clearly understood that capitalist smugglers should be dealt with merci- 
lessly. They should be made to forget all their tricks. The management of 
economic life is at present the business of the working class. It is only by the 
aid of a further strengthening of this order that the working class can attain 
its final liberation from the remnants of the accursed capitalist order. 

chapter xvii 

Spiritual Liberation — The Next Step to Economic Liberation. (The Church 
AND the School in the Soviet Republic) 

The working class and its party, the party of Communist Bolsheviks, are 
struggling not only for economic freedom but also for spiritual liberation of the 
toiling masses. Economic liberation itself will be the easier attained the sooner 
the workman and the farm laborer get their brains cleared of all the rubbish 
with which the landowners and the manufacturing bourgeoisie have stuffed 
them. We have already noticed before how cleverly the dominating classes 
have hitherto bound the workers with their newspapers, journals, pamphlets, 
priests, and even the school, which they cleverly converted from an organ of 
enlightenment into an institution for dulling the minds of the people. 

One of the agencies in achieving this object was the belief in God and in the 
Devil, spirits good and evil (angels and saints), in short, in religion. A great 
number of people have grown accustomed to believe in all this, whilst if we 
analyze these ideas and try to understand the origin of religion and why it 
is so strongly supported by the bourgeoisie, it will become clear that the real 
significance of religion is that it is a poison which is still being instilled into 
the people. It will also become clear why the party of the Communists is a 
>strong antagonist of religion. 

Modern science has proved that the original form of religion was the worship 
of the souls of dead ancestors. This worship began at a time when the so-called 
elders — that is to say, the richer, more experienced and wise old men of the 
tribe who already had some power over the rest, had attained great importance. 
In the early stages of human history, when men were still living in herds, like 
semi-apes, people were indeed equal. It was only later on that elders or heads 
of tribes began to have command over the whole tribe: they were the first to 
be worshipped. The worship of the spirits of the dead rich — this is the basis 
of religion: and these "sacred" idols were later on changed into a terrible God 
who punishes and forgives, judges and governs. Let us analyze why people 
have come to accept such an explanation of everything that takes place around 
them. The reason is that people judge of things that are little known to them 
by comparing them with things with which they are familiar : they weigh and 
measure things on a scale that is concrete and comprehensible. A well-known 
scholar quotes the following instance. A little girl, brought up on a private 
estate where there was a poultry farm, constantly had to do with eggs: eggs 
were ever present before her eyes. Once, when she saw the sky strewn with 
stars, she told a story of how the heavens were sprinkled with a vast number 
of eggs. Such instances may be quoted endlessly. The same thing holds true 
as regards religion. People saw that there are those who obey and those who 
are obeyed. They constantly witnessed the following picture — the elder (and 
later on the prince) surrounded by his followers, more experienced, wiser, 
stronger and richer than the others, orders others and reigns over them: the 
others act according to his wish : he is obeyed by all. 

This kind of thing witnessed daily and hourly apiieared to explain all that 
takes place in the world. There is on the earth, they said, one commander 
and those who obey him. Consequently, they reasoned, the whole world is built 
up on the same scheme. There is a master of the world, a great, strong, terrible 
master upon whom everything is dependent, and who punishes her servants 
severely for disobedience. This master over the world is God. And so the 
idea of a god in the heavens arises only in tliose cases when people are accustomed 
to the power of the elders over the tribe. 

It is an interesting fact that all the names given to God confirm the same origin 
of religion. The Russian words for God and for rich are of the same origin ; thus 
"Bog" (God) and "Bogat" (rich) are derived from the same root. God is great, 
powerful, and rich. God is called Lord or Master. What does "Lord" signify 


hnt the contrary to servant or slaA^e? In prayers we have : "We arc thy servants." 
God is further called the "Heavenly King." All the other titles point in the 
same direction : "sovereign," "ruler." and so on. And so, what does "God" 
really mean? It means, as we are told, a rich, strong master, a slave owner, 
a "heavenly king," a judge — in short, an exact copy, a reproduction of the earthly 
power of the elders, and later on of the princes. When the Jews were governed 
by their ]irinces, who punished and tortured them, there arose the teaching of 
a cruel and terrible God. Such is the God of the Old Testament. He is a vicious 
old man, who chastises his subjects severely. Let us now consider the God of 
the Greek Orthodox <;5hurch. The teachings concerning this god arose in 
Byzantium, in the country which served as a model of despotism. At the head 
stood a despotic monarch surrounded by his ministers: these, in their turn, were 
surrounded by high ofiicials ; next followed a whole host of avaricious officials. 
The Greek orthodox religion is an exact model of this system. The "Heavenly 
King" sits above. Around him are gathered the most important saints (for in- 
stance, Saint Nicholas, the Holy Virgin, something after the style of an empress, 
tlie wife of the Holy Ghost), these are ministers; next comes a hierarchy of 
angels and saints in the order of officials in a despotic government. These are 
the so-called "ranks of angels and arch-angels": cherubs, seraphs heralds and 
various other "ranks" or "offices." The word "rank" itself shows that we 
have to do with officials ("rank" and "official" are words which have the same 
root in the Russian language). These "ranks" are represented on images in 
such a way as to show that he who stands higher in rank is better dressed, has 
more laurels, that is to say, he has more "orders," just the same as on our 
sinful earth. In a despotic State the official invariably demands "a bribe", else 
ho will do nothing for you : and just in the same way it is necessary to light 
a candle before the image of the saint or he will get angry and not deliver 
your message to the highest official — to God. In a despotic State there are 
special officials whose express mission is to act as intercessors, for a bribe," 
of course. Here in the orthodox religion there are also special saints — "inter- 
cessors," or intermediaries, especially women. For instance, the Holy Virgin 
is, so to speak, a professional female "intercessor." Of course, she does not per- 
form her services free of charge ; she expects to have more churches built in 
her name than anyone else, and a great number of surplices have tO' be bought 
for her images, ornamented with precious stones, and so on. 

In short, we see that the belief in God is a )X'ffcction of the commonest everyday 
relations: it is the belief in sJarerii, which people are made to believe exists- 
not only on the earth, but in the whole universe. We understand, of course, that 
in reality there is nothing of the kind ; and it is clear to everybody that sucfe 
legends hinder the development of humanity. The progress of Man is possible 
only when he finds vafural explanations for all phenomena. But when, instead of 
a logical reason, people invent a god or saints or demons or devilsi, then, of 
course, we can expect nothing sensible. Here are a few more instances. Some 
religious people believe that thunder is caused by the Prophet Elijah taking a 
ride in his chariot ; and therefore, when they hear thunder they take off their 
hats and make the sign of the cross. In reality this electricity which causes 
thunder is perfectly well known to science, and by this same power we run 
trams and carry on them many things we desire. A logical line of reasoning 
shows us that we can convey manure with the aid of the "Prophet Elijah," and 
that he makes a good carman. Let us suppose that we believed in the Prophet 
Elijah version. In that case we should never have invented tramears. That 
means that, owing to religion, we should for ever have remained in a state of 
burharix')!!. Another instance. AVar breaks out, people perish in millions, oceans 
of blood are shed. A reason explaining this must be found. Those who do not 
believe in God think, reason, and analyze ; they see that the war is conducted 
f(ir plundering purposes and for filthy aims; and therefore they say for the 
workers of all countries, "To arms against your oppressors !" "Down with cap- 
ital !" We see quite a different attitude in the case of a religious man. Sighing 
like an old woman, he rea.sons as follows: "God is punishing us for our sins. 
O Lord, our heavenly father ! Thou art chastising us justly for our transgres- 
sions." And if he is very pious, and Greek Orthodox into the bargain he makes: 
it a point to use one particular kind of food on definite days (this is called 
fasting), to beat his forehead against stone floors (this is called penance), and 
to perform a thousand other idiotic things. Equally foolish things are done 
by the religious Jew, the Moslem Turk, the Buddhist Chinese, in a word by 
everyone who believes in God. Hence it follows that really religious people 
are incapable of fighting. Religion, as we have shown, not only leaves peopl'' iu 


a state of harbarism. but helps to leave them in a state of slaverji. A religious 
man is more inclined to suffer anything that happens resignedly, for everything, 
as they believe, "comes from God" ("from on high") ; he considers himself bound 
to submit to the authorities and to suffer, for which he will be repaid a hundred- 
fold in the life to come. Little wonder, then, that the dominant classes in cap- 
italist States look upon religion as a very useful tool for deceiving and stultifying 
the people. 

At the beginning of the chapter we saw that the power of the bourgeoisie is 
sustained not only by bayonets but also by dulling the hrains of the slaves. We 
also saw that the bourgeoisie poisons the minds of its subjects on an organized 
plan. For this purpose there is a special organization, namely, the Church or- 
ganized by the State. In nearly all capitalist countries the church is just af< 
much a State institution as is the police ; and the priest is as much a State oflBcial 
as is the executioner, the gendarme, the detective. He receives a Governmient 
sahirij for administering his poison to the masses. Tliis is the most dangerous 
part of the whole affair. Were it not for this monstrously firm and strong 
organization of the plundering capitalist State, there would be no room for 
a single priest. Their bankruptcy would be swift enough. But the trouble is 
that the bourgeois States support the whole church institution, which in return 
staunchly supports the bourgeois Government. At the time of the Tzar the 
Russian priests not only deceived the masses, but even made use of the con- 
fessional to find out what ideas or intentions their victims entertained towards 
the Government ; they acted as spies while discharging their "sacred duties." 
The Government not only supported them, but even persecuted by imprisonment 
and exile and all other means, all so-called "blasphemers" of the Greek Orthodox 

All these considerations explain the programme of the Communists with regard 
to their attitude to religion and to the Church. RclU/ion must be fought, if not 
by violence, at all events by argument. The Church must be seita rated from the 
State. That means that the priests may remain, but should be maintained by 
those who wish to accept their poison from them or by those who are interested 
in their existence. There is a poison called opium ; when that is smoked, sweet 
visions appear; you feel as if you were in paradise. But its action tells on the 
health of the smoker. His health is gradually ruined, and little by little he 
becomes a meek idiot. The same applies to religion. There are people wh<_) 
wish to smoke opium ; but it would be absurd if the State maintained at its 
expense, that is to say. at the expense of the people, opium dens and special men 
to serve them. For this reason the Church must be (and already is) treated 
in the same way : priests, bishops, archbishops, patriarchs, abbots and the rest 
of the lot must l)e refused State maintenance. Let the believers, if they wish ir. 
feed the holy fathers at their own expense on the fat of the land, a thing which 
thev. the priests, greatly appreciate. 

On the other hand, freedom of thought must be guaranteed. Hence the axiom 
that religion is a private affair. This does not mean that we should not struggle 
against it by freedom of argument. It means that the State should support 
no' church organization. As regards this question, the programme of the Bol- 
shevik Communists has been carried out all over Russia. Priests of all creed-* 
have been deprived of State subsidy. And that is the reason why they have 
become so furious and have twice anathematized the present Government, i. e., 
the Government of the workers, by excommunicating all workers from the church. 
We must note this. At the time of the Tzar they knew well enough the text in 
the Scripture which says, "There is no power but from God," and "The powers 
that be are to be obeyed." They willingly sprinkled executioners with holy water. 
But why have they forgotten these texts at a time when the workers are at 
the head of the Government? Is it possible that the will of God does not hold 
good when there is a Communist Government? What can the reason be? The 
thing is very simple. The Soviet Government is the first Government in Russia 
to attack the pockets of the clergy. And this, by the way, is a priest's most 
sensitive spot. The clergy are now in the camp of the "oppressed bourgeoisie." 
They areworking secretly and openly against the working class. But times 
have changed, and the masses of the laboring class are not so prone to become 
the easy prey to deceit they were before. Such is the great educational signfi- 
cance of the Revolution ; revoiution liberates us from economic slavery, but ir. 
also frees us from spiritual bondage. 

There is another vital Question concerning the mental education of the masses. 
It is the question of the school. 


At the time of the domination of the bourgeoisie the school served more as an 
ur^'aii of educating the masses in a spirit of submission to the houryeoisie than as 
a medium of real education. All primers and other appurtenances of study were 
permeated with the spirit of slavery. Especially was this the case with history 
1 looks. These did nothing but lie in describing the feats of the Tzars and other 
crowned scoundrels. Next to these, an important part in the schools was played 
l>y the clergy. Everything aimed at one object: to mould the child so that it 
i<liouId emerge not a citizen l)ut a subject, a slave, capable if the occasion requires 
to kill his fellow-men should they rise against the capitalist Government. Schools 
were divided into grades; there were schools for the common people and others 
lor the better classes. For the latter there were colleges and universities, where 
the sons of the bourgeoisie were taught various sciences with the final object 
of teaching them how to manage and subjugate the rabble ; for the rabble there 
was the lower school. In these, more than in the others, was the influence of the 
clergy predominant. The object of this school, that gave very little knowledge 
but lauglit the children a great deal of religious lies, was to prepare i^eople to 
suffer, obey, and be resignedly submissive to the better classes. The common 
people had no access whatever to the higher schools, that is to the universities, 
the social higher technical schools, and various other institutions. And thus an 
educational monopoly was created. Only the rich or those supported by the 
rich could enjoy a more or less decent education. For these reasons the intellec- 
tuals utilized their position in a very clever manner. And, of course, at the time 
of the October Revolution they were against the workers ; they scented danger 
of their privileges and rights vanishing if everybody had the right to study, and 
if the "rabble" were given the possibility of acquiring knowledge. 

It is therefore necessary in the very first place to make education general 
and c^impulsory. In order to construct life on new principles it is necessary that 
a man ^^hould be accustomed from childhood to honest toil. For this purpose 
school children should be taught all kinds of manual labor in the schools. The 
doors of the high schools shoitld be open to all. The priests should be turned 
out of the schools ; let them, if they wish to, fool the children anywhere they like, 
but not in a Government institution: schools should be secular and not religious. 
The organs of the local government of the workers have control over the schools, 
and should not be parsimonious where public instruction and the supply of all 
the requisites for successful teaching for boys and girls is concerned. At present 
in some of the villages and provincial towns, some idiotic schoolmasters, aided 
l)y the "kulaks" (or rather the "kulaks" aided by these idiots) are carrying on 
a propaganda, saying that the Bolsheviks are aiming at destroying science, 
abolishing education, and so on. This is, of course, a most despicable lie. The 
Comnuinist Bolsheviks have quite different intentions ; they wish to liberate 
science from the yoke of capitalism, and to make all science accessible to the 
laboring masses. They wish to destroy the monopoly (exclusive right) of the 
rich to education. This is the true foundation of the matter : and it is no wonder 
that the rich are afraid of losing one of their chief supports. If every workman 
acquires the qualifications of an engineer, then the position of the capitalist and 
of the rich engineer is not worth a brass farthing. They will have nothing more 
to boast of, for there will be many such as they. No undermining of the workers' 
cause, no amottnt of sabotage by the old servants of capital will be of any avail. 
And that is what the right honorable bottrgeoisie is afraid of. 

Culttire for the bourgeoisie, spiritual subjection for the poor — these are the 
capitalists' war cries. Citltttre for all, liberation of the mind from the yoke of 
capital — this is the watchword of the party of the working class, the party of 
the Oimmunists. 

chapter xviii 

The People Akmed Defend Their Gains 

(Army of the Soviet Republic) 

"The best guarantee, the best security for freedom, is a bayonet in the hands 
of the workers." These were the words of one of the creators of scientific Com- 
munism, Frederick Engels. Now we can actually see how true this saying is : 
it has been completely confirmed by the experience of the great Revolution of 

Quite a short time ago even some of otir more radical comrades raised the 
cry of "disarmament." This is what they said: The bourgeoisie is everywhere 


building a monstrous, colossal fleet — submarine, marine and aerial; huge armies 
are growing. Fortresses are being built, colossal cannon and such organs of 
destruction as armored cars and tanks. All this terrible system of violence must 
be destroyed. We must demand general disarmament. 

But the Bolsheviks argued otherwise. We said : Our war cry is disarmament 
of the bourgeoisie and unconditioTial and universal arming of the working class. 
And indeed, it would be ridiculous to attempt to persuade the bourgeoisie to 
surrender its most powerful weapon — its armed forces (composed by the way, 
of deceived workmen and poor peasants). This violent death-dealing machine 
can only be destroyed by means of violence. Arms are surrendered only by the 
compulsion of the superior armed force of the other side ; and in this fact lies 
the signiticance of the armed resi.sta)ice against the bourgeoisie. 

For the bourgeoisie the army is a weapon in the struggle for the division of 
the world on the one hand, and a weapon in the struggle against the working 
class on the other. The Tzar and Kerensky dreamed of conquering Constanti- 
nople as well as the Dardanelles, Galicia, and many another spicy bit by the 
aid of their army. At the same time both the Tzar and Kerensky (and that 
means the landowners and the capitalists) were oppressing the working class 
and the poorest peasantry as nnich as they could. In the hands of large property 
owners the army served as a weapon for the division of the world and for the 
subjection of the poor elements of the population. That is what the army used to 
be in former times. 

How was it possible for the bovirgeoisie to make of the workers and peasants 
(of whom the army is largely composed) a weapon against these very workers 
and peasants? What enabled the Tzar and Kerensky to do so? Why was it 
done by Wilhelra and Hindenburg and by the German bourgeoisie, who turned 
their workers into executioners of the Russian, Finnisli, Ukrainian and German 
revolutionaries? Why were German sailors who revolted against their oppres- 
sors shot down by the hand of other German sailors? How is it that the Englisli 
bourgeoisie is suppressing by means of English soldiers (who are also mostly 
workers) the revolution in Ireland, a country oppressed and trodden underfoot 
by cruel English bankers? 

To this question the same answer should be given as to that of how the bour- 
geoisie manages to retain its power in general. We have seen that this is 
achieved by means of the perfect organization of the bourgeoisie. In the army 
the power of the bourgeoisie rests on two principles ; tirstly on the officer corps. 
consisting of nobles and bourgeois; and secondly on the special training and 
spiritual murder, i. e., on a bourgeois moulding of the minds of the soldier.'t. 
The otficer corps on the whole is a purely class institution. An officer is ideally 
tiained for the work of militarism, to inflict brutal corporal punishment on the 
soldiers and to cruelly mishandle them. Just glance at one of these brave officers 
of the Guards or at a Prussian dandy with the face of a prize bull-dog. You 
can see at a glance that like a circus trainer he has been long and i)ersistently 
learning how to ill-treat and bully and keep the human herd in a state of mortal 
fear and blind-obedience. 

You can see that, since such gentlemen are picked and chosen from among the 
bourgeoisie and nobility and sous of landowners and capitalists, it is quite 
evident that they will lead the army in quite a definite direction. 

And now, look at the soldiers : They enter the army as common men, with no 
common bond, from different provinces, unable to show any united resistance, 
with minds already tainted by the clergy and the school. They are instantly 
put up at barracks, and the triiuing begun. Intimidation and teaching of the 
most anti-democratic notions, a constant system of fear and punishment, cor- 
ruption by i-ewards for crime (for instance, for the execution of strikers), all 
this makes idiots of the men, dummies, who blindly obey their own mortal 

It is evident that with the Revolution, the army entirely resting on the old 
Tzarist basis, the army driven to slaughter for the purpose of conquering Con- 
stantinople even by Kerensky, must inevitably have become disorganized. Do 
you ask why? Because the soldiers saw that they were being organized, trained 
and thrown into battle for the sake of the criminal stupidity of the bourgeoisie. 
They saw that for nearly three years they sat in the trenches, perished, hungered, 
suffered, and died and killed others all for the sake of somebody's money-bags. 
It is natural enough that when the revolution has displaced the old discipline 
and a new one had not get had time to be formed, the collapse, ruin and deatji 
of the old army took place. 


This disease was inevitable. Tlie Meiishevik and Socialist revolutionary fools 
accuse the Bolsheviks of this disaster: "see what you have done! Corrupted 
the army of the Tzar." They fail to see that the lievolutiou could not have 
been victoriou.s if the army had remained loyal to the Tzar and to the generals 
in February and to the bourgeoisie in October. The soldiers' rising against the 
Tzar was iilrvadv the result of the disorganization of the Tzarist army. Every 
revolution destroys what is old and rotten: a certain period (a very difficult 
one to live through) must pass until the new life is fornieil, until the building 
of a new beautiful editice is begun upon the ruins of the old pig-sty. 

Let us give you another example from a different sphere. As the older 
workers know, in bygone times, when the peasants were only begiiming to turn 
to factory work, the first thing that happened when they came to town was to 
become desperate "hooligans," "rowdies," "roughs." The word "factory hand" 
or "worker" were practically words of abuse ; and indeed our workers were 
great hands at ruflianism, obscenity and swearing. Basing their arguments on 
this state of affairs, all reactionaries fearing any kind of innovation used to 
propagate a return to serfdom. 

What they said was this : As town life depraves workers and as its rendency 
is to "roughen their characters," what they want is the country, and especially 
the paternal rod of the landowners. Under these conditions virtue will be sure 
to thrive. And they sneered ill-naturedly at those who looked upon the working 
class as the salt of the earth. They used to say to us Marxists, disciples of 
the great Conununist, Karl Marx: "Do you see what you workers areV They 
are swine, not men. They are blackguards ! And you say that they are tlie salt 
of the earth ! A good whip and a stick — that is what they want ; that will teach 
them to behave themselves." 

Many were "convinced" by such argumeuts. But the truth of the matter is 
this: when the pea.'^ants went to town iuid broke with the country, the old village 
ties and traditions were forgotten. In the country they lived according to 
old traditions, looking up to the old men as if they were oracles, obeying them 
although they had grown childish with age : they would stay peacefully within 
the limits of their cabbage patch, never setting foot outside their native town, 
and would, of course, be afraid of anything new. This is an example of rustic 
wisdom. Bad as it was, it served as a bridle, and helped to preserve village order. 
This simplicity vanished rayndly in the towns, where everything was new: new 
people, new outlooks, and a multitude of new temptations in store. No wonder 
that the old village morality vanished into thin air, and some time elapsed 
before a new was formed. It was this interval between two periods that came 
to be a period of depravity. 

But during the course of events a new consciousness arose in the new sphere 
of life; the consciousness of the solidarity of the proletariat. The factory united 
the workers; the opression of the capitalists taught them to struggle jointly:" 
in the place of the weak, insipid grandfatherly wisdom there arose a new prole- 
tarian outlook, infinitely higher than the old. It is this new outlook that is 
changing the proletariat into the most advanced, most revolutionary, most 
creative of all classes. We Communists, of course, and not the feudalist land- 
owners proved to be right. 

At the present time the Mensheviks and Socialist Revolutionaries have taken 
up the attitude of the feudalists with regard to the army. They are loudly lic- 
wailing the disorganization of the army, whilst laying the blame on the Bol- 
sheviks. And just as the feudalists used to call the worlvers back into the country 
under the protective wing of the landowner and his whip, just so do the Men- 
sheviks and Socialist Revolutionaries now appeal for a return to the old army 
discipline, to serve under a Constituent Assembly on a basis of a return to 
capitalism and all its "attractions." But we Communists look aliead. We know 
that the past is dead, having become rotten as was inevitable, and that, failing 
thus, the workers and poor i>easants could never take the (Tovernment into their 
hands: we know that in the place of the old army a new, more enlightened one. 
the Red Arniii of Socialism, has arisen. 

As long as the bourcjeoisie stand at the head of Government, and our country 
is a fatherland of bankers, traders, speculators, liolice. kings and ))residents, so 
long will the working class have no personal interests in guarding this filthy profit- 
producing apparatus. A proletarian's duty is to rise against this institution. 
Only miserable lackies and hangers-on to money-bags can say that we must not 
strike and revolt against the plundering Imjierialist Government at a time of war. 
Of course, such revolts stand in the way of the plundering war business. It is 
949.^,1—40— app.. pt. 1— — 14 


quite clear that agitation within the country, and more especially agitation in 
the army, aids disorganization. But how is the domination of Wilhelm, for 
instance, to be broken without disorganizing the Wilhelm discipline? Impossible. 
The German martyr sailors murdered by Wilhelm's executioners, certainly aided 
the disorganization of the army organized after the high-way robbery system. 
But if the robbers' armv is inwardly strong, that would mean death to the revolu- 
tion If the revolution is strong, that means death to the robbers' army. The 
followers of Scheidemann, the German social betrayers, are persecuting Lieblvnecht, 
as a disorganizer of the army. They are persecuting all the German revolution- 
ists, the German Bolsheviks, as people who are "dealing the valorous army a 
dastardly blow in the back," in other words, a blow to the cause of plunder. Let 
the Scheidemanns fraternize with our Mensheviks and such like individuals^ 
they are all of a kidney. 

Russia has passed through this period. The revolution of the workers is vic- 
torious. The period of decay has passed into the realm of memory. The period 
of construction of a new order of things is upon us. A Red Army is being built 
now 7iot for plunder, but for the defence of t<ociaUsms not to guard the fatherland 
of profit, where everything was in the hands of capital and the landowners, but 
to protect the Socialist fatherland, where everything has been transferred to the 
hands of workers ; not for the sake of mutilating and ravaging foreign countries, 
but for the purpose of aiding the international Coninninist Revolution. 

It is needless to say that this army must be built on different principles to the 
old one. The Red Army, we have said, must represent an armed people alongside 
a disarmed bourgeoisie. It must be a class army of the proletariat and the poor- 
est peasantry. It is essentially directed against the bourgeoisie of the whole 
world, including its own. This is the reason why it cannot include armed repre- 
sentatives of the bourgeoisie. To admit the bourgeoisie into the army would be 
equal to arming it: it would mean creating a White Guard within the Red Array 
which might easily disorganize the whole concern, becoming a centre of treason 
and revolt, and go over into the camp of the imperialist troops of the enemy. Our 
object is not to arm the bourgeoisie, but to disarm it, depriving it of its last 
machine gun. 

Our second, and not less important task, is to prepare a proletarian officer corps. 
The working class has to defend itself against enemies who are attacking it from 
all sides. War has been imposed upon it by the imperialist rascals : and modern 
warfare requires well-trained specialists. The Tzar and Kerensky had such men 
at their disposal, but the working class and the peasantry have not. Specialists 
have to be trained. For this purpose we must utilize the knowledge of the old 
ones; they must be compelled to instruct the proletariat. Then the Socialist 
Soviet Fatherland will have its own officers and its own officer corps. And just 
as in the Revolution, the more experience and active working class leads after it 
the poor peasantry, so in the war against the imperialist robbers, the worker- 
officers will lead tlie whole mass of the Red Peasant Army. 

The Red Army must be created on the basis of universal training of the worker.s 
and the poorest elements of the peasantry. 

This is most urgent and important. Not a minute, not a second should be lost. 

Every workman and every peasant must be trained and must be taught how to 
use arms. Only fools can argue that : "They are a long way off yet ; until they 
come we shall have time to get ready." Russian sluggards often reason like that. 
All the world knows that the favorite Russian saying is ("avos") "perhaps" or 
"maybe" ; "avos we shall manage." But before you have time to wink, the class 
foe called landowners and capitalists, arrives on the spot and takes the workman 
by the collar; and, maybe, when some brave Prussian subaltern (or an English 
oiie, who knows?) places our workman against the wall to be shot, the good- 
natured fellow will scratch his head saying, "What a fool I have been !" 

We must look sharp. Don't let Peter loait for Bill, or Bill for Peter. Let no one 
be idle, but all set earnestly to work. Universal military training is the most 
urgent and most important problem of the day. 

The old army was based on the retreat of the soldiers. This happened because 
of capitalists and landowners commanding over millions of soldiers-peasants and 
workmen, whose interests were contrary to their own. The capitalist Govern- 
ment was thus obliged to turn the soldier into a brainless tool, acting against his 
own interests. But the Red Army of the workers and peasants, on the contrary, 
is defending its own cause. It must therefore be based only on the enlighten- 
ment and conscieniiou.'iness of all comrades who enter its ranks. Hence the need 
for special courses, reading-rooms, lectures, meetings and conferences. In their 
leisure hours the soldiers of the Red Army must take an active part together 

APPENDIX, PAllT 1 195 

Avirli the workmen in the political life of the country, attending meetings and 
sliiirivf/ the life of the irorking class. 

This is one of the most important conditions for creating a firm rvrolutiotuiry 
discipline: not the former discipline of the rod, hut the new discipline of the 
class-conscious revolutionary. If the bond between the army and tlie working 
class is broken, then the army rapidly degenerates and can easily turn into a 
band willing to serve the master who pays most. Then it begins to fall asunder, 
and nothing can save it. And, on the contrary, if the soldiers of the Red Army 
keep close contact with and take an interest in their lives, then they will be 
exactly what they are meant to be — the armed organ of the revolutionary masses. 

Due of the best ways of keeping in contact with the masses besides the above- 
mentioned lectures, political meetings, is the utilization of the soldiers for con- 
tinuously training the workers in shooting, handling rifles, machine guns, etc. 
Instead of idling, card playing, and other "recreations." instead of senselessly 
sauntering about the barracks, they can turn to creative work, which is in unit- 
ing the proletariat into one friendly family. In this way an armed people is 
<?reated, as well as an armed peasantry, to keep watch over the great revolution 
of the workers. 


The LiBEfRATioN OF Nations 
(The National Question and International Diplomacy) 

The programme of the Communist Party is a scheme not only for the liberation 
of the proletariat of one country, but for the emancipation of the proletariat of 
the whole world: for it is a programme of international revolution. But it is, at 
the same time a progrannue of the liberation of all oppressed countries and 
nations. The plundering "great Empires" (England, Germany, Japan, America, 
ere.) have, by dint of robbery acquired ascendancy over untold expanses of land 
and vast number of people. They have divided our whole planet between them ; 
and no wonder that in these conquered countries the working class and the labor- 
ing: masses are groaning under a double yoke — that of their own bourgeoisie and 
the additional one cast ttpon them by their conqtierors. 

Tzarist Russia had also gained by plunder a great deal of territory and many 
peoi»les. The present size of "our"' Empire is only to be explained in this way It 
is quite natural that among many "aliens," including even some sections of the 
proletariat who did not belong to the "great Russian" nationality, there was a 
general lack of confidence towards the "Moscal." as the natives of Muscovy were 
formerly called. The nationalist persecution evoked nationalist sentiments ; the 
ojtpressed part of the proletariat had no confidence in the oppressing nationality 
a-> a whole, without distinction of class ; the oppressing parts of the pro- 
letariat did not sufficiently understand the position of the "alien" prole- 
tariat subjected to a double burden of persecution. And yet, in order to attain 
the victory of the workers' revolution along the whole front, complete and 
ji< rfect confidence of the various parts of the proletariat towards each other is 
imperative. The proletariat of "alien" nations should be made to feel by deed 
and word that it has a loyal ally in the person of the proletariat of the nation 
that formerly was the oppressor. Here in Russia the dominating nation used to 
be the "Great Russian," which conquered in succession the Finns and the Tartars, 
the Ukrainian and the Armenians, the Georgians and the Poles, the Sivashes and 
Moravians, the Kirghizes and Ba.shkirs, and dozens of other tribes. It naturally 
follows that some proletarians of these peoples foster mistaken notions concerning 
everpthififf Rus.^ian. He has been accustomed to being ordered about and abused 
by the Tzar's officials, and he thinks that all Russians and the Russian proletariat 
as well are like what the former was. 

It is for the ptirpose of instilling a brotherly confidence in the various sections 
of the proletariat that the programme of the Communists proclaims the rif/ht of 
the laboring class of every nation to complete independence. That means to sa.v 
that the Russian worker who is now at the head of the Government must say 
to the workers of other nationalities living in Russia : "Comrades, if you do not 
wish to form a part of the Soviet Republic: if you wish to organize your own 
Soviets and form an independent Soviet Republic, you can do so. We fully 
acknowledge your right to do so, and we do not wish to detain you by force even 
for a single moment. 

It is self-evident that only by such tactic.'< can the confidence of (he proletariat 
as a whole be won. Let us imagine what would happen if the workers' Soviets 


of Great Russia were to attempt by force of arms to coerce the worting ela?.s of 
other nations into submission. The hitter would mean the complete collapse of 
the whole of all proletarian movements and the fall of the Revolution. Thai is 
not the right way to act, for, we repeat, victory is possible only on condition of a 
frntcrnal union of the ivorkers. 

Let us bear this in mind. The question is not of the right of the nation [ i. e., of 
the workers and the bourgeoisie together) to independence, but of the right of the 
laboririff classes. That means that the so-called "will of the nation" is not in the 
least sacred to us. We consider sacred only the will of tlie proletariat innl the 
semi-proletarian masses. 

That is why we .speak not of the rights of nations to independence, but of the 
right of the lahoritu/ rlnsses of every nation to separation if it so desires. During 
a proletarian dictatorship it is not the constituent Assemblies (all national, 
embracing all the people of the given territory), but the Soviets of workers that 
decide questions. And if in any out-of-the-way corner there would be simul- 
taneously convened two conferences, the "Constituent Assembly" of the given: 
nation and the Convention of Soviets ; and if it so happens that tlie "Constituent 
Assembly" expressed itself in favor of separation, and the Proletariat Convontion 
voted against it, even then we should support the decision of the prolcltiriaf 
against that of the "Constituent Assembly" by every means, including force of 

This is how the Proletarian Party decides que.stions relating to the proletarians 
of the various nations living within the bomidai ies of the country. But our party 
is confronted witli a still more dilRcuH question, that of its international pro- 
gramme. Here our way is clear. We must pursue the tactics of universal siiit- 
port of the International Revolution by means of revolutionary propaganda, 
strikes, and revolts in Imperialist countries, and by piopagating revolts and in- 
.surrections in the colonies of these countries. 

In Imperialist countries (and such are all countries except Russia, whei'e the 
workers have blown out the brains of capital) one of the main obstacles to a 
revolution is the social-patriotic p;u-ty. Even at the present moment it is pro- 
claiming the defence of the (phmdering) fatherland, thereby deceiving the masses 
of the people. They are deploring the decay of the (plundering) army. They 
are persecuting our friends the German, Austrian and English Bolsheviks, wlio 
alone persist in refusing with contempt and indigiiatiDit to defend the bourgeois 
fatherland. The position of tlie f^oviet Republic is an exclusive one. It is the 
only proletarian State organization in the world, in the midst of organized plun- 
dering bourgeois States. For that reason alone this Soviet State has a right to 
he defended: and more tlian tliat, it must be looked on as a weapon of the 
universal proletariat against the tuiiversal bourgeoisie. The war cry of this 
struggle is self-evident: the universal war cry of this struggle is the motto of the- 
International Soviet Republic. 

The overthrow of Imperialist Governments by means of armed insurrection, and 
the organization of the international Soviet Republic, such is the way to an 
international dictatorship of the working class. 

The most efficient means of supporting the international revolution is the 
organization of armed forces of the revolution. The workers of all cottntrles who 
are not blinded by social patriots, the local Socialist Revolutionaries and Menshe- 
viks (of whom there are many in every country) I'ecognize in the Russian Workers' 
Revolution and in the Soviet Government facts that concern them intimately. 
Why? Because they understand that the government of the Soviets means tlie 
government of the workers themselves. It w(tuld be quite different if the bour- 
geoisie, aided by the Mensheviks and Social Revolutionaries had overthrown the 
Soviet Government, convened the Constituent Assembly, and by its means had 
organized the government of the bourgeoisie, approximately on the same plan as 
that which existed before the October coup d'etat. In that case the working class 
would have lost its country, its fatherland, foi' if would have lost its power. Then 
the banks would inevitably have been returned to the bankers, the factories to the 
manufacturers, and the land to the landowners. The fatherland of profits would 
have revived, and the workers would not have been interested in the least in de- 
fending such a fatherland. On the other hand the West European workers would 
also have ceased to regard bourgeoisie Russia as the bright beacon showing them 
their way in the difficult struggle. The development of international revolution 
would have retarded. On the contrary, the organization of i-esistanee against 
international robbers who are fighfing against Soviet Russia as its class enemies, 
as owners and capitalists, in a word, as a band of executioners of the Workers'' 
Rcrolutioi7, the oi'ganization of the Red Army — these are the factors combining 
to strengthen the revolutionary movement in all European countrie.s. 


The better we are organized, the better we arm the battalions of workers and 
peasants, tlie stronger will be the proletarian dictatorship in Russia, and the 
quicker will the cause of international revolution advance. 

The Revolution is inevitable, however its progress is hindered by German, 
Austrian, French and English Mensheviks. The Russian working masses have 
broken with the compromisers. The workers of Western Europe will also break 
with them. (They are, as a matter of fact, doing so already.) The maximum 
of overthrowing the bourgeois fatherlands, of shattering the plundering Govern- 
ments, and of establishing workers' dictatorship, is steadily gaining ground. 
Sooner or later we shall have an International RepvbUe of Soviets. 

The International Republic of Soviets will free hundreds of millions in all 
nations of their yoke. The "civilized" plundering Empires have cruelly tortured 
tin- inhabitants of their colonies by their blood and iron regime. European civili- 
zation was maintained by the blood of small peoples mercilessly exploited and 
lobbed in the far-otf countries beyond the seas. They will be freed by the 
dictatorship of the proletariat, and by that alone. Just as the Russian Govern- 
menr has announced its refusal to participate in a colonial policy, and has proved 
its decision by its attitude with regard to Persia, just so will the European work- 
ing class, after overthrowing the domination of bankers, etc., give complete free- 
dom to the oppressed and exploited classes. That is the reason why our pro- 
gramme, which is that of the international revolution, is at the same time a 
plan for the complete liberation of all the weak and oppressed. The great class — 
the working class — has set before itself great problems: and it has not only set 
them, but is proceeding to solve them in a bloody, painful, heroic struggle. 


I (Why We are Communists) 

Up to the time of the last Convention, our party called itself the party of the 
social democracy. The party of the working class bore the same name all over the 
world. But the war has been responsible for an unprecedented schism in the 
social-democratic parties here. Three main tendencies have come to the fore — 
the extreme right, the centre, and the extreme left wing. 

The right social-democrats have proved to be thoroughgoing traitors to the 
working class. They prostrated themselves in the dust, and are still doing so, 
before the generals whose hands are covered with the blood of workers. They 
support the vilest projects and greatest crimes of their Governments. We have 
only to remember that the German Social-Democrat Scheidemann is supporting 
the' Ukrainian policy of the German generals. They are the real executioners 
■of the wvrkers revohition. 

When the German workers have won their cause they will hang Scheidemann 
on the same gallows as Wilhelm. There are a great number of these kind of 
persons in France and England, as well as in other countries. It is they who 
deceive the workei's by empty words about the defence of the fatherland (the 
bourgeois, Wilhelm fatherland), and crush the workers' revolution at home and 
execute it in Russia with the aid of the bayonets of their Governments. 

The second current is the centre. This has a tendency to grumble against its 
Guverinnent, but it is not capable ot carrying on a revolutionary struggle. It has 
not the courage to call the workers into an open fight, and fears beyond everything 
;an armed insurrection, which is the only way of solving the question. 

And lastly, there is the third current, the extreme left. In Germany Liebknecht 
and his comrades. They are German Bolsheviks, their policy and views being 
those of the Bolsheviks. 

You will understand what a muddle ensues as a result of all these grotips calling 
themselves by one and the sante name. The Social Democrat Liebknecht and the 
Social Democrat Scheidemann! What have they in common? The one, a mean 
traitor, an executioner of the revolution : and the other, a brave fighter for the 
working class. Can you imagine a greater difference? 

In Russia, where the revolutionary struggle and the development of the revolu- 
tion in October caused the question of Socialism and the overthrow of the bour- 
geois Government to be settled : immediately the dispute between the traitors to 
Socialism and the adherents of true Socialism was decided by force of arms. 
The Right Socialist Revolutionaries and party of the Mensheviks were on the 
same side of the barricades as the counter-revolutionary rabble : the Bolsheviks 
were on the other side, side by side with the workers and soldiers. Blood marked 
a boundary line between us. Such a thing cannot and never will be forgotten. 


This is why we were compelled to give a different name to distinguish us from 
the traitors to Socialism. The difference between us is too great. Our ways and 
means are too far apart. 

As regards the boiirr/eois Government, we Connnunists know but one duty 
towards it— to blow it up, shattering at one blow this union of plunderers. The 
Social Democrats propagate the defence of the union of business men, screening 
themselves by a pretence of defending their fatherland. 

But after the victory of the AA'orking class, we stand for the defence and pro- 
tection of the workers' Soviet Government against the sworn enemies, the 
Imperialists of the whole world. But they, like true traitors to the workers' 
interests, make it their task to break up the Workers' Government and demolish 
the Soviets. And in their struggle in this direction they go hand in hand with 
the united bourgeoisie. 

We Communists are eagerly striving onward in spite of all difficulties: we are 
going towards Communism throin/h ihe dictntorship of the proletariat. But they, 
like the evil bourgeoisie, hate this dictatorship with all their hearts, libelling and 
lowering it whenever they can. proclaiming as their watchword : "Back to 
Capitalism !" 

We Connnunists say to the working class: "There ai-e many thorns upon our 
path, but we must go onward, undaunted. The great revolution which is turning 
the old world upside down cannot go smoothly ; the great revolution cannot be 
carried out in white gloves ; it is born in pain. These birth pangs must be gone 
through with infinite patience : when duly born they will serve to free us from 
the iron grip of capitalist slavery." 

And the Mensheviks. Socialist Revolutionaries and Social Democrats stand 
aside, looking on at our mistakes and failings, and draw the conclusion of going 
back. "Let us return," they say. "Give up everything to the bourgeoisie and 
content ourselves with a modest helping at capitalist tables." 

No! Our road is not the same. These wretches try to scare us by the hogej^ 
of civil war. But there can be no revolution without a civil war. Or do they 
perhaps imagine that in other more advanced counti'ies Socialist revolutions will 
take place without civil warY The example of Finland has proved the best 
evidence of civil war in advanced capitalist countries being even more tierce, 
more bloody, more cruel and frenzied than ours proved to be. Now we can foresee 
that in Germany, for instance, the war between the classes will be extremely acute. 
The German officers are already shooting their soldiers and sailors by hundreds 
for the slightest attempt at rebellion. It is only through civil war and the iron 
dictatorship of the workers that Socialism can be attained. Such is the pro- 
gramme of the Communists. 

The domination of the bourgeois Government, organization of production by the 
working class, a wide road to Communism — such is the programme of the Com- 
munist Party. 

When we call ourselves Communists we not only draw a line to distinguish 
ourselves from the social traitors, such as Mensheviks, Socialist Revolutionaries, 
and followers of Scheidemann. and other bourgeois agents. We i-evert to the 
old name of the revolutionary party, at the head of which stood Kail Marx. His 
was the Communist Parti/. The testament of modern revolution up to the present 
moment is still the "Manifesto of the Communists" written by Marx and Engels. 
Some eighteen months before his death old Engels protested against the name of 
"Social Democrat." He said. "This name is not a suitable one for a party which 
is striving towards Communism and which finally aims at destroying evenj form 
of government, including a democratic one." What would these great old men, 
glowing with hatred towards the bourgeois State apparatus, say if they were 
shown such Social Democrats as Dan, Tzeretelli, Scheidemann? They would have 
branded them with contempt, as they did those "democrats" who. in tragic and 
difficult moments of the revolution, directed the muzzles of their revolvers against 
the working class. 

There are many obstacles in our way ; and there is at present much that is 
evil in our midst. For many outsiders have joined us who are selling themselves 
for money to the highest bidder, intending to flsh in troubled waters. And the 
working class is young and inexi>erienced. And the fiercest enemies are surround- 
ing the young Soviet Republic on all sides. But we Communists know that the 
working class is learning wi.sdom by its own mistakes. We know that it will 
clear its ranks of all the impurity that has crept in ; we know that it will be 
joined by its loyal and desired ally — the world proletariat. No old womanish 
wails, no hysterical shrieks will confuse our party, for it has put upon its banner 


the golden words written bv Marx in the Communist Manifesto: "LET THE 
May, 1918. 

Exhibit No. 15 

[Source: A pamphlet published by the Tublishing Office of the Third Communist Interna- 
tional, Moscow: 1920; American edition, published by the United Communist Party 
of America] 

Workers of the World Unite! 

Manifesto of the Second Congress of the Third Communist International 

Publishing Office of the Third Communist International, Moscow 1920. American 
edition published by the United Communist Party of America 

The Second Congress of the Communist International, representing 
thirty-five countries, met at Petrograd on July 17th, 1920, and con- 
tinued its sessions in Moscow from July 27th to Aug. 7th. Its pur- 
pose was to form a clear idea regarding the international situation, 
to cast a retrospective glance over the road already traveled, and to 
establish the milestone of further struggle. 

The World Congress of the Communist International unanimously 
addresses this manifesto to the workingmen and women of the whole 
world with the profound conviction that its aims are just and its 
methods correct. 

1. international relations after VERSAILLES 

The bourgeoisie of the whole world is looking back wistfully upon the days- 
just past. All the foundations of international and internal relations have beea 
overthrown or shaken. Threatening clouds darken the future of the capitalist 
world. The old system of alliances and mutual insurance which formed the 
foundations of international equilibrium and of armed peace has been utterly 
destroyed by the Imperialist War. The Versailles Treaty has failed to establish 
any othei- adjustment in its stead. 

Russia, Austria-Hungary and Germany in succession have fallen out of the 
world race. Some of the powerful empires which had themselves previously 
played a prominent part in the world's plunder have now become the objects of 
plunder and dismemberment. A new and vast field for colonial exploitation, 
beginning from this side of the Rhine, embracing the whole of Central and Eastern 
Europe and stretching as far as the Pacific Ocean, opens itself before the victorious 
Imperialists of the Entente. How can the Congo, Syria, Egypt or Mexico be com- 
pared with the steppes, forests and mountain lands of Russia taken together with 
the skilled labor power of Germany? The new colonial policy of the victors has 
worked itself out: the overthrow of the Labor Republic in Russia, the plunder of 
Russian raw material, the compulsory application of German labor power to work 
this raw material with the aid of German coal, using the German employer as an 
armed overseer — and the assembling of the manufactured products and the profits 
that go with them. The victorious Allies have inherited the program of "organ- 
izing Europe", which had been advanced by German Imperialism in the heyday 
of its military success. Thus when the vanquished bandits of the German Empire 
are to be put on trial by the Entente rulers, they will certainly be tried by a jury 
of their peers. 

But there are defeated parties even in the camp of tlie conquerors. 

Stupefied by tlie fumes of a chauvinistic victory which it had won for the benefit 
of others the French bourgeoisie fancies that it has become tiie ruler of Europe. 
But in reality France has never been in such slavish dependence upon the more 
powerful governments of England and America than she is today. France is 
dictating Belgium's industrial and military policy, thus converting her weaker ally 
into a subject province. While she herself is nothing but a larger Belgium in 
relation to England. For the time being the English Imperialists allowed the 


French usurers to have their way within tlie limits of the continent assigntd to 
them, thus shrewdly diverting from themselves the keen indignation of Euroi^ean 
and English workers, and turning it ui)on France. The power of moribund and 
xlevastated France is ephemeral and almost farcical. Sooner or later this fact 
will penetrate into the minds of even the French social-patriots. 

Italv has fallen still lower in the scale of international relations. Deprived 
of coal and bread, deprived of raw material, having its internal equilibrium lost 
as a result of the war. the Italian bourgeoisie is incapable, though entirely will- 
ing, to realize in full measure the rights to plunder and violate even those colonial 
allotments assigned to it by England. 

Japan, torn within her feudal shell by capitalist contradictions, stands on the 
verge of a great revolutionary crisis which is already paralyzing her imperialist 
aspirations, in spite of the favorable international situation. 

Thus only two great powers remain : Great Britain and the United States. 

The English Imperialism has rid itself of the Asiatic rivalry of Czarism and of 
the menace of German competition. The military power of Britain has reached 
its apex. England has surrounded the Continent with a chain of subject nations. 
She has subjected to her control Finland, Esthonia and Latvia, thus depriving 
Sweden and Norway of the last vestige of independence and converting the Baltic 
Sea into a British bay. She has no rival in the North Sea. Her supremacy in 
South Africa, Egypt, India, Persia and Afganistau has converted the Indian Ocean 
into a British lake. Her domination on the sea makes her likewise mistress of the 
continent. Her power over the world ends only with the American Dollar Repub- 
lic and the Russian Soviet Republic. 

The United States was absolutely thrown off the path of continental provincial- 
ism by the world war. The Monroe doctrine — "America for the Americans" — 
which was the program of the newly fledged national capitalism, has given place 
to the imperialism watchword — ''Make the Whole World America." Having 
started with exploiting the war and profiting from the European bloodshed by 
commercial and industrial deals and exchange speculation, America went on to 
direct participation in the world war, playing a predominant part in the destruction 
of Germany and now has its hand in all questions of European and world politics. 

Under the banner of the League of Nations the United States tried to extend to 
this side of the ocean its policy of uniting various nationalities on a federative 
basis and hitch to its golden chariot the nationalities of Europe and other pai'ts 
of the world and govern them from Washington. The League of Nations was to 
be essentially nothing more than a world monopoly of "Yankee and Co." 

The President of the Ignited States, the great Prophet of Platitudes, had de- 
scended from Mt. Sinai to conquer the world with his Fourteen Commandments. 
Stockbrokers, ministers and men of business entertained no illusion whatever 
regarding the meaning of this new revelation. The European "Socialists" on the 
other hand, baked on the Kautskian oven, got into a religious transport, and 
danced like King David following in the wake of the Wilsonian ark. 

But in coming down to practical questions the American apostle learned that in 
spite of the excellent exchange rate of the dollar, England still occupies, as here- 
tofore, the first place on all sea routes which connect and divide nations, for she 
has the strongest navy, the longer cables and the greater experience in world 
plunder. Another obstacle in Wilson's path was the Soviet Republic and Com- 
munism. Thus the American Messiah resentfidly deserted the League of Nations, 
which has become one of England's diplomatic offices, and turned his back \xpou 

It would be childish, however, to suppose that American Imperialism, its first 
advance thwarted by England, is going to lock itself up within the shell of the 
Monroe doctrine. By no means. The laiited States is planning to create its own 
international system with its center in North America ; both the Republican and 
Democratic parties stand by the policy of continuing to subject the entire Ameri- 
can continent, convert all the countries of Central and South America into colonial 
dependencies, and thus create a counterpart to the English League of Nations. 
This end is to be achieved by means of a naval program, which in 3 to 5 years 
will create a navy surpassing that of Great Britain. This being a matter of life 
and denth for English Imperialism, it results in a frenzied shipbuilding rivalry 
between the two giants, accompanied by a no less frenzied scramble for petroleum. 

France, which had expected to play the part of arbiter between England and the 
TTnited States, but which has herself like one of the lesser planets been drawn into 
the orbit of Great Britain, now finds herself unbearably burdened by the League 
of Nations and is trying to rid herself of it by fainiing antagonism between 
England and the United States. 


Thus the greatest Powers are preparing the ground for a new world encounter. 

Instead of liberating the small nationalities the War has brought ruination and 
t'lislavemeut upon the Balkan nations, both victors and vanquished, and has Bal- 
kanized a considerable part of Europe. Actuated by ilieir Imperialist interests 
I he conquerors adopted the policy of dividing up the devastated great powers into 
.-mall separate national states. This policy bears not even a trace of the so-called 
national principle: Imperialism is essentially inimical to national boundaries, even 
iliough they be those of great powers. The new petty bourgeois states are nothing 
more than the by-products of Imperialism ; it has created as temporary props for 
irself. a whole series of small nations, such as Austria, Hungary, Poland, Jugo- 
slavia, Bohemia, Finland, Esthonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Armenia, Georgia and 
orliers, some of which are openly oppressed while others are officially patronized, 
but all are treated as vassals. By means of its banks, railways and coal monop- 
olies. Imperialism dominates these nations, dooming them to intolerable economic 
and national hardships, to endless conflicts and sanguinary strife. 

What an overwhelming irony of fate tliat the reconstruction of Poland, which 
formed a part of the program of the Revolutionary democracy during the first rev- 
olutionary outbursts of the international proletariat, should now be brought about 
by Imperialism for counter revolutionary ends, and that the "Democracy" of 
Poland, whose predecessors had died on the barricades of Europe, should be used 
as a foul and bloody weapon in the miirderous hands of the Anglo-French bandits 
against the first Proletarian Republic in the world ! 

"Democratic" Czecho-Slovakia has likewise sold itself to French capital, and 
has furnished White Guard contingents against Soviet Russia and Hungary. 

The heroic attempt of the Hungarian proletariat to free itself from the national 
and economic chaos prevailing in central Europe, and emerge upon the road of a 
Soviet Federation, which is the only means to salvation, was stifled by the com- 
bined forces of capitalist reaction at a time when the proletariat of the more 
advanced countries of Europe, misled by its parties, proved incapable of doing its 
duty both toward Socialist Hungary and its own self. 

The Soviet Government of Btidapest was overthrown with the assistance of the 
social traitors who after having stayed in power foi' three and a half days, were 
themselves overthrown by the luibridled counter-revolutionary canaille, surpassing 
in Its bloody deeds the crimes of Kolchak, Denikin, Wrangel and other Allied 
agents. But even though temporarily crushed Soviet Hungary is like a beacon 
light to the toilers of Central Europe. 

The Turks are unwilling to submit to the l)ase peace terms dictated by the 
London tyrants. In order to get these terms fulfilled England has armed Greece 
and set her against Turkey. Thus both the Turks and the Greeks are given over 
to mutual destruction, and the Balkan peninsida and anterior Asia Minor are 
doomed to devastation. 

Armenia's part in the Allies' fight against Turkey is analogous to that which 
Belgium played in the war with Germany, and Serbia in the war with Austria- 
Hungary. When the Armenian state was formed — without boundary lines and 
withou't means of existence — Wilson declined the Armenian mandate offered him 
by the "League of