Ralph Grahan

Paris “Peace” Conference
Is Step to World War III

(27 July 1946)

From The Militant, Vol. X No. 30, 27 July 1946, pp. 1 & 8.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for the Marxists’ Internet Archive.

On July 29 representatives of the governments of 21 nations are due to meet in Paris to pass on “peace treaties” to be concluded by the victorious Allied powers with Italy, Rumania, Hungary, Bulgaria and Finland, the defeated satellites of German imperialism. Although designated as a peace conference,” the Paris gathering will prove to be nothing else but a fresh link in the chain of preparations for a third world war, in the same way that the Versailles “peace” conference led inevitably to the Second World War.

The terms of the treaties to be forced on the Axis satellites have already been substantially decided by the “Big Four” Council of Foreign Ministers. The Paris conference is needed merely to rubber-stamp these terms and to give to their subsequent enforcement the authority of “democratic” approval.

The type of treaty which the imperialists and the Kremlin gang seek to impose on the vanquished is sufficiently indicated in the robber decisions made by the “Big Four” with regard to Italy.

Carve Up Country

In addition to stripping Italy of its colonial possessions in Africa (which are now under the control and domination of Britain), the “Big Four” used the carving knife on the defeated country itself. To Greece go the Dodecanese Islands. Yugoslavia, whose government is a puppet of the Kremlin, is to get the Dalmatian Islands, Zara, Fiume and most of Istria. The Piedmontese area of Briga and Tenda is to go to France. The port of Trieste is to be “internationalized” under authority of the Security Council of the United Nations. The Italian navy and merchant fleet are to be divided among the victors. Italy is to pay an indemnity of $100,000,000 to the Soviet Union.

The Atlantic Charter promised that there would be no territorial transfers that did not accord with the “freely expressed wishes of the peoples concerned?’ But these promises, like pie-crusts, were made to be broken.

Not Consulted

Neither the imperialists nor the Kremlin have so much as suggested consulting the natives of the Italian colonies as to their desires and aspirations. Nor are the people in the territories being sliced off from Italy being asked to indicate their wishes. In fact, when the people of Trieste protested against the decision of the “Big Four” to “internationalize” their city, an American warship trained its big guns on them and Allied troops broke up their demonstrations.

The decisions of the “B|ig Four with regard to Italy bear no resemblance whatever to genuine peace-making. By establishing new artificial frontiers, by dividing instead of unifying, by imposing robber indemnities, the economic recovery of Europe will be retarded and new national hatreds engendered. Thus the seeds of another war are being planted by the imperialist “peace-makers” and the Kremlin gang.

Meetings of the “Big Four,” preceding the Paris gathering of July 29, were marked by continuous struggle between the Anglo-American imperialists and the Kremlin representatives both over the .devision of the spoils of war and the redrawing of the map of Europe. Both camps strove for economic and strategic advantages. Few questions were fully settled and differences will now be carried over to the Paris “peace” conference.

Stalin Submits

On every important issue Stalin was forced to submit to the decisions of the Anglo-American bloc. At the “peace” conference the struggle will continue and the ascendancy of the Anglo-American imperialists will again become manifest. The Kremlin strove to delay the, calling of the conference, but in this too it was obliged to submit. The imperialists need this “representative” meeting, not only to reinforce their plans for Europe, but as an additional forum for anti-Soviet propaganda in preparation for the third world war.

The 21-nation gathering will be an utterly powerless affair. It will have the right to “discuss” and “make recommendations” – but no decisions. And naturally, any recommendations that are not to the liking of the “Big Four” can be blandly ignored.

The government representatives of the small nations may not like what the “Big Four” intend doing, but they will be unable to offer any effective resistance. If any of them should harbor the notion that they have been called in to decide anything, they will be quickly disillusioned.

Anti-Soviet Bloc

Just as the Paris conference of Foreign Ministers (the “Big Four”) resolved itself into a bloc of the Anglo-American imperialists against the Soviet Union, so the 21-nation “peace” conference will crystallize along the same lines.

By far the greater majority of the delegations will represent small states which revolve in the orbit of the big imperialist powers. These will be marshalled to vote for any recommendations which the imperialists want adopted. Against this array the Kremlin gang will be able to muster only a handful of its own satellites.

In whatever conflicts arise, the Soviet Union will be made to appear as the author of sinister designs, an obstructor of the majority will, and an obstacle to peace.

It should be borne in mind that the “peace” conference will deal only with the peripheral problems of Europe. Thus far, the “Big Four” have not got around to discussing a peace treaty for Germany, which is the heart of the European problem. Here the conflict between the. imperialists and the Soviet Union is much sharper. The Anglo-American bloc seeks to “unify” Germany and bring the country within its own orbit. Stalin stubbornly opposes such a unification, knowing full well that a Germany unified under Anglo-American auspices will inevitably become a pawn and puppet in the hands of his-imperialist adversaries.

Yet the international relationship of forces is such that Stalin is compelled to submit on every decisive point of difference. The only alternative is an open break with the imperialists, which would speed up the drive toward a war in which the Soviet Union would have to fight for its life under circumstances far less favorable than when Hitler attacked in 1941.

The Soviet Government under Lenin and Trotsky would have shunned all these imperialist conclaves as if they were a plague. It would have denounced the fraudulent “peace-making” at Paris and called upon the world working class to fight against the nefarious plans of the robber imperialists. It would have summoned the toilers in every land to the socialist revolution, which is the only guarantee of true peace. That is exactly what the Russian Bolsheviks did after the first world war.

Stalin and the Kremlin gang cannot do these things. They long since abandoned the program of the socialist revolution. As a consequence, they are compelled to copy the methods of the imperialists and participate in all their dirty business. In so doing they besmirch the Soviet Union, destroy its moral capital in the eyes of the toilers abroad, weaken its international position, and help pave the way to a third world war.

Last updated on 18 June 2021