Tchen Du Hsiu

Stalin-Bucharin and the Chinese Revolution

(September 1929)

From The Militant, Vol. IV No. 3, 1 February 1931, p. 7.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Marxists’ Internet Archive.

The Communist International and the Central Committee have for a long time opposed any review of the record of failure of the Chinese revolution. And now, because I have constantly criticized them, they have suddenly invented the following declaration: “He (i.e., I) is not sincere in recognizing his own error of opportunist leadership in the period of the great revolution and has not decided to recognize where his real past errors lay; therefore, he must inevitably pursue his past erroneous line.” These words are a self-revelation. In reality, if I were to stultify my mind, and care nothing about the interests of the proletariat; if I had not decided to recognize my real past errors, and had been willing to do their dirty work and have them continue with their past false line, they would nevertheless, as before, depend upon the old opportunist’s (i.e., my) pen and mouth to attack so-called Trotskyism in order to cover up their errors. How could they expel me from the party? Am I, who have struggled against evil social forces for the greater part of my life, willing to do such a base work – to confuse right and wrong? Lee Li San said: “The Chinese opportunists are unwilling to absorb accurately the lessons of the failure of the past great revolution, but try to hide behind the banner of Trotskyism in order to cover up their own mistakes.” In reality, the documents of comrade Trotsky accuse me much more severely than do those of Stalin and Bucharin; and I could not but recognize that the lessons of the past revolution pointed out by him are one hundred percent correct, and I could never reject his words because he criticizes me. I am willing to accept the severest criticism of my comrades, but unwilling to bury the lessons and experiences of the revolution. I would rather be expelled now by Lee Li San and a few others than to see the party crisis without attempting to save the party and be blamed in the future by the masses of the party members.

Comrades! I know that my expulsion from the party by the Central Committee is the act of a few men for the purpose of covering up their errors. They not only want to save themselves the “trouble” of hearing my opinions expressed within the party and advocating an open discussion on political problems, but also to demonstrate by my expulsion that all the comrades must keep their mouths closed. I know that the masses of the party members never entertained the idea of expelling me. Though I have been expelled by a few leaders at the top of the party, yet there has never been any hostility or bad feeling between the masses in the ranks and myself. I shall continue to serve the proletariat hand in hand with all those comrades who are not following the opportunist policy of Stalin’s clique both in the International and in China.

Comrades! The present errors of the party are not partial or accidental problems: like in the past, they are the manifestation of the whole opportunist policy conducted by Stalin in China. The responsible heads of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party, who are willing to be the phonograph of Stalin, have never shown any political consciousness and are growing worse and worse: they can never be saved. At the Tenth Conference of the Russian party, Lenin said: “It is better to have a small organization if there are fundamentally different political opinions and there is no way of solving the problem.” Based on this theory, he led the faction of the Bolshevik movement. Now, in our party, there is no other way permitted (legal or open discussion in the party), to overcome the party crisis. Every party member has the obligation of saving the party. We must return to the spirit and political line of Bolshevism, unite together solidly, and stand straightforward on the side of the International Opposition led by comrade Trotsky, that is, under the banner of real Marxism and Leninism, and decisively, persistently and thoroughly fight against the opportunism of the Comintern and the Central Committee of the Chinese party. We are opposed not only to the opportunism of Stalin and his like, but also to the compromising attitude of Zinoviev. We are not afraid of the so-called “jumping out of the ranks of the party” and do not hesitate to sacrifice everything in order to save the party and the Chinese revolution!

December 10, 1929

Tchen Du-Hsiu

Last updated on 28.11.2012