C.L.R. James 1937
First Published: in Fight,Volume 2. No. 5. April, 1937, pp. 6-9, signed CLRJ;
Transcribed/Marked up: by Ted Crawford/Damon Maxwell.
The Stalinist regime has published what purports to be a verbatim account of the Radek-Pyatakov trial (Report of Proceedings in the case of the Zinoviev-Trotskyist Centre). We recommend it to our readers. Within its covers it has got the complete refutation of the whole fabrication of lies and slander.
The Moscow Trial is a political trial. There are therefore two aspects: (a) the judicial; and (b) the political.
Let us deal with the judicial first. The report shows that not one of the accused was a Trotskyist. Radek, Pyatakov, Serebriakov, etc., had publicly broken with Trotsky many years before and had submitted themselves to the Stalinist regime. Their confessed Trotskyism was therefore secret. Of those indicted, the only ones who are admittedly supporters of the views held by Trotsky are Trotsky and his son Sedov. The Stalinist regime therefore has not actually brought to trial one single Trotsykyist, but only persons who for years have been members, and some like Radek, etc., highly placed members, of the party and the Government. All the shouting of Pollitt, Dutt and the Daily Worker are as nothing compared to this simple fact. Of those in Russia who still stand on the principles of the proletarian revolution and have refused to submit to the Stalinist regime, and there are thousands such, none have confessed to anything. None have been brought to trial.
The second point is that in all the hundreds of pages, there is not one single scrap of evidence brought forward to substantiate the voluminous confessions. There is a lot of talk about evidence, there is a lot of talk about prisoners confessing only when faced with the proofs of their guilt. But what do these amount to? Zero. They do not exist. Not on one page of the book is there any hint of anything like a proof except the confessions of this, that or other of the accused. Train-wrecks took place. Various of the accused say that they engineered them. That is a confession. It is no proof. Why did they confess? We shall deal with that in time. For the moment, we merely wish to point out that this trial proves that Zinoviev and Kamenev, on whose confessions so much in the last trial depended, are now proved by this trial to have been lying. They said in the last trial that the Trotskyists had no programme. Now it turns out that the programme was the restoration of capitalism in the U.S.S.R. and the giving of territory to Germany and Japan. Obviously such persistent liars cannot be the persons whose confessions can be taken as evidence against others. Trotsky and his son Sedov have totally denied the charges. Anyone who is not a Stalinist must see that something a little more substantial is necessary before Trotsky and Sedov are branded as agents of Fascism.
But nothing is brought forward. How simple it would have been for the Soviet authorities to clinch their case by the publishing of some evidence, by laying before the court some conclusive piece of material proof. There is nothing. Not a scrap. They have not done it, because they cannot do it. How convincing it would be. Hundreds of conspirators took part in these wrecking and terrorist acts. But never before have conspirators carried on such a gigantic conspiracy leaving not the slightest clue behind them.
The curious thing is that Radek admits this. On page 542-543 he says that the wrecking was established by technical experts. (It is strange that all these technical experts did not see that wrecking was being committed all these years, and if they had seen it, then what were the Soviet authorities doing?) Radek then says that the testimony of the wreckers “apart from material evidence” presents an absolute picture. His “material evidence” we have seen. He then, however, goes on to the whole purpose of the trial – to discredit Trotsky and all that Trotsky stands for. “But the trial is bicentric, and it has another important significance. It has revealed the smithy of war, and has shown that the Trotskyite organisation became an agency of the forces which are fomenting a new world war.” That is what the Stalinist regime wanted to prove.
Now for the proof. There is none. And Radek admits it. “What proofs are there in support of this fact? In support of this fact there is the evidence of two people – the testimony of myself, who received directives and the letters from Trotsky (which unfortunately I burned) and the testimony of Pyatakov, who spoke to Trotsky. All the testimony of the other accused rests on our testimony.”
Some day the peculiar nature of Radek’s testimony is going to be understood. His gaolers could hardly have asked him to say this. For the burnt letters are no evidence and Radek, saying this at the end of the trial, must have known that the Pyatakov trip to Trotsky had already been exposed during the trial for the crude and clumsy lie that it is. Obviously if the Soviet authorities could have given evidence of Pyatakov’s having gone to see Trotsky in Oslo in an aeroplane, they would have done so. Instead this very question on which Radek insists the whole proof of the connection with Trotsky must now rest, is the very question on which the whole frame-up broke down.
Giving evidence on January 23rd, Pyatakov says about his trip to Oslo (page 60): “We got into an aeroplane and set off. We did not stop anywhere, and at approximately 3 p.m. we landed at the airdrome in Oslo. There an automobile awaited us. We got in and drove off. We drove for about 30 minutes and came to a country suburb. We got out, entered a small house that was not badly furnished, and there I saw Trotsky, whom I had not seen since 1928.” They then talked for two hours while Trotsky detailed to Pyatakov all the wicked things he was to do. But alas! An aeroplane is not a letter. It cannot easily be burned. The Norwegian press at once stated that no aeroplane had landed at Oslo from Germany on that day. That was the lie direct. On January 27 therefore Vishinsky, the public prosecutor, attempted to patch up this gaping hole. On page 442 we read. “The President. The examination of the accused is finished. The examination of the witnesses is also finished. Are there any supplementary questions?
Vishinsky: I have a question to put to Pyatakov. Accused Pyatakov please tell me, you travelled in an aeroplane to Norway to meet Trotsky. Do you know in which aerodrome you landed?
Pyatakov: Near Oslo.
He moves from Oslo to near Oslo. Now airdromes are not taxi-stands. Pyatakov is lying now or he was lying before (in fact he is lying both times). But both accuser and accused have to get out of this somehow. They go on.
“Vishinsky: Did you have any difficulties about the landing or admission of the aeroplane to the airdrome?
Pyatakov: I was so excited by the unusual nature of the journey, that I did not pay attention.
Any fool can see Vishinsky knows that that this is pretty poor stuff and this is not good enough. He continues:
“Vishinsky: Have you heard of a place called Kjeller or Kjellere?
Vishinsky: You confirm that you landed in an aerdrome near Oslo.
Pyatakov: Near Oslo, that I remember.
Vishinsky: I have no more questions.
Indeed he could have no more. Pyatakov, on a journey which could have cost him not only his life but the imprisonment of all his relatives and dependants, an old revolutionary and at one time head of a great Soviet department of state, does not know whether he landed in or near Oslo, or whether there were difficulties about landing. An aeroplane is not a ship or a train. Pyatakov was the passenger who mattered. Yet in the space of four days he gives this ludicrously contradictory evidence, and Vishinsky has no more questions to ask. Instead he makes a ruinous attempt to give some legal covering to the lie.
“I have an application to the Court. I interested myself in this matter and asked the People’s Commissariat of Foreign Affairs to make an enquiry, for I wanted to verify Pyatakov’s evidence from this side too. I have received an official communication which I ask to have out in the records.”
Why, in the name of law and justice, was not Pyatakov examined about all these things before and the enquiries made? Why do reports have to appear in the foreign press before Vishinsky interests himself in this matter? The volumes of evidence extracted from the prisoners run to 36. The accused are examined on all manner of things. But on this, the key question, it takes a denial from Norwegian papers to make the prosecution bestir itself. And what does Vishinsky produce? Evidence of the arrival of a plane on the day in question? Nothing of the sort. He reads the following:
“The Consular Department of the People’s Commissariat of Foreign Affairs hereby informs the Procurator of the U.S.S.R. according to the information received by the Embassy of the U.S.S.R. in Norway, the Kjellere Aerdrome near Oslo receives all the year round, in accordance with international regulations, aeroplanes of other countries, and that the arrival and departures of aeroplanes is possible also in winter months. (To Pyatakov) It was in December?
Vishinsky: I ask that this be placed in the records .. .” That is the end of this crucial link.
Who says that he wants to believe all this can do so. Who will convict Trotsky and Sedov of wishing to restore capitalism in the Soviet Union and planning with Hitler and Japan to dismember Soviet Russia, on the evidence of this visit, can do so. But I say quite frankly, that apart from the official Stalinists themselves, A. J. Cummings of the News Chronicle, Sir Bernard Pares (in the Observer), D. N. Pritt, K.C., all who are satisfied with all this, are showing not their capacity to analyse evidence, but the bias of their political views. Trotsky and Sedov have not confessed to anything. And no one could convict a dog on such evidence.
In regard to the letters written by Trotsky, this trial contains also a glaring departure from the last that is sufficient by itself to discredit all the volumes of confessions. It will be remembered that in the Zinoviev-Kamenev Trial Vishinsky made great play with a letter written by Trotsky in March 1932 in which he called for the removal of Stalin, i.e. Vishinsky insisted, by terrorism or in plain words, murder. This in the first trial was “evidence.” But it was quickly shown that in March 1932 Trotsky had indeed written a letter calling for the removal of Stalin and published it openly in a bulletin of the Left Opposition (from which has developed the sections working for the Fourth International). Trotsky had written that the Bolshevik Party should do what Lenin had recommended in the Testament – remove Stalin. This was widely noted in the European press. Now at this trial Vishinsky has dropped that letter altogether. This main prop of the last trial has vanished. Instead we have accounts of other letters in which Trotsky unfolded his schemes, all of which were burnt. So that the only piece of concrete evidence (and the letter was not shown) which the prosecution adopted in the first trial has been abandoned without a by your leave and for the same reason for which Pyatakov abandoned the airdrome in Oslo for another elsewhere. It is no wonder that the prosecution prefers confessions and burnt letters. The moment they attempt to base the charge upon material other than burnt letters they burn their fingers.
Let us now examine the grave charge of terrorism. Trotsky is accused of urging insistently that terrorists attacks against the leaders should be undertaken. Now it is easy enough to point to train wrecks and say that they were due to the activities of wreckers. The wrecks took place and here are people who say they did it. But a terrorist attempt is a terrorist attempt. It could hardly be anything else but a terrorist attempt. There is the murder of Kirov in 1934, but in the trial in August 1936 not one other terrorist attempt could be brought forward. This conspirator confessed that he intended to murder Stalin, but was seated too far from him, etc. etc., and another wanted to murder Voroshilov but Voroshilov’s car went too fast – the whole collection of rigmarole which drew so much suspicion and derisive laughter from the ordinary intelligent person.
In this new trial Vishinsky made an attempt to produce at least some actual terrorist attacks. He had better have left it at intentions. On page 302, the examination of Arnold begins. Arnold is made to tell us where he went to school, beginning at the age of seven, what countries he travelled in, where he fought in the war, his views on Protestantism, Freemasonary, Roman Catholicism (page 325) and much information of equal interest and value. All this no doubt was very convincing and it is not improbable that Arnold spoke the truth. Only on page 327, however, he begins to tell us about his two terrorist acts. The first was in 1934, “at the beginning of the year, or rather in the Spring.” One Cherepukhin told him to wreck the car when driving Orjonokidze, one of Stalin’s closest supporters. He drove the car at 70 or 80 kilometres an hour but he did not have the nerve to perform the act. That is all. The reader can get the whole dastardly crime on page 328. The second is also on page 328. He was driving Molotov, and had been told to cause an accident. Just as he was leaving the dirt road for the high road another car came dashing towards him “There was no time to think; I had to commit a terrorist act. I see that the other car is flying towards me. Then I realised that Cherepukhin had not trusted me and had sent a second car. I had not much time to think, but I got scared. I managed to turn to the side into the gully. At that moment Gryadinsky seized me and said “What are you doing?””
Vishinsky: What stopped you?
Arnold: Cowardice stopped me.
Vishinsky: And this thwarted your criminal plans.
And that was the second dastardly terrorist attempt. The Stalinist regime must think that the workers in Western Europe are all as stupid as the leaders of the Third International who visit them in Moscow. Are these the crimes for which one shoots people? The train-wrecks are there. One can link them up with “counter-revolutionary Trotskyists.” But a terrorist attempt is on a par with a visit to Trotsky in an aeroplane. These things cannot easily be manufactured, and the attempts to do so result in these incredibly childish concoctions. And let us note that there will never be any evidence of any terrorist act that is worth the paper it is written on. The prosecution has to stick to intentions. For if they attempt to give evidence, of one actually made, then they will have to answer the question: “Why haven’t you said anything about it before?”
If X attempted to kill Stalin or Y attempted to kill Molotov, then surely the G.P.U., not to say Stalin or Molotov would have known something about it before these confessions? Retrospective charges of attempted terrorism cannot therefore be supported by evidence. The prosecution is in a mess from which it cannot escape.
Finally there is the question of the confessions. People ask “Why did they confess?” They cannot imagine that men not guilty of these crimes should stand up and confess to them. They think it psychologically impossible. On the psychological plane the alternatives are equally impossible. If they are guilty it means that Rykov, Bucharin, Serebriakov, Pyatakov, Radek, Tomsky, Zinoviev, Kamenev, Sokolnikov, having no mass support (their own confessions), seeing the astonishing victory of Socialism under Stalin, yet have all plotted for the restoration of capitalism in the Soviet Union, out of sheer spite, malice and lust for power. That is nonsense. Revolutionaries have degenerated in the past, but they were corrupted by capitalism, they had not lived in a socialist state which they had helped to build. These men are the men of 1917-1923. And it is here that the whole Stalinist case stinks to heaven. For in a pamphlet, “The Truth about Trotskyism,” Harry Pollitt tells us that the real Old Guard are still at their posts and these are “Stalin, Ordjonokidze, Yezhov, Molotov, Voroshilov, Litvinov, Kalinin, Kaganovitch, Zhedanov.” He says, “The gang of enemies now being uprooted by the vigilance of the Soviet Government never were the Old Guard. If they had been, they would never have been the subject of such adulation on the part of those inside and outside the Labour movement who hate above all else Revolution and Socialism.”
For cool lying and brazen effrontery, that statement would be hard to beat. We are not talking of Assyrian history or the Roman Empire. Since when were Zinoviev, Pyatakov and Co. not the Old Guard and these others have become Lenin’s collaborators? Pollitt has got to write that or he’ll be accused of Trotskyism. Luckily only members of the Communist Party have to believe it. Purely on the plane of psychological probability, is it not more likely that Stalin, backed by the bureaucracy, has gradually transformed the Bolshevik Party from a revolutionary organisation into a militia protecting the interests of the bureaucracy? That Zinoviev, Kamenev and the others, not seeing this process as early as Trotsky saw it, went part of the way with Stalin against Trotsky, but little by little they have realised where Stalin was leading the party, that some of them have tried again and again to fit themselves into Stalinism but that the evolution of Russia into a conservative nationalism has one by one driven them to take the road of opposition? Today, Stalin, master of the apparatus, has brought the Soviet Union to the verge of the restoration of capitalism, and must get rid of these who, whatever their previous faults, still cannot help retaining something of the principles and ideas which helped them to achieve victory in October 1917.
Differences with Lenin they had – violent conflicts at times. But it is only Stalinism with its fascist mentality of “the Leader” which sees a difference of policy honestly fought for as a treason to Socialism.
“Why did they confess?” Confession is a Stalinist technique. If you do not confess you are not tried. A prisoner confessed in 1931 that he conspired with Abramovitch in Russia in the summer of 1928. Yet Adler has printed in his Witchcraft Trial in Moscow, a photograph of Abramovitch at a conference of the Second International in that very summer of 1928. Why did that man confess ? We can suggest one reason. The Stalinist regime is the cruellest and most tyrannical regime that exists on the face of the globe, and to identify it with Socialism is gross ignorance or equally culpable cowardice. The proofs are there for those who want them.
On June 8th, 1934, Kalinin, President of the Central Executive Committee and Medviev, the Secretary, signed a decree which was published in Izvestia of June 9th. By this decree whoever attempts to leave the Soviet Union, not only a soldier but a civilian is liable to the death penalty. Section 3 of the decree states that if the criminal is a soldier, the adult members of his family who knew but did not report it, will receive 5-10 years of prison with confiscation of all goods. And the second paragraph of that section states. “The other adult members of the family of the traitor, living with him or at his expense at the time of the treason are deprived of electoral rights and deported for five years to the distant regions of Siberia.” For wife, mother, sisters, that is often worse than death.
On April 8th, 1935, Izvestia published the decree instituting the death penalty for children of twelve. That is Stalinist law. What would Stalin’s secret police not threaten, or even perform, in the secrecy of prison? The Stalinist loud speakers in this country raise a cheap applause by ranting about Dimitrov, and the Reichstag Trial. Muralov, Pyatakov, Sokolnikov would, we are sure, have stood up to a Fascist tribunal, for Socialism against Fascism. But for them to stand up and denounce Stalin after promising to confess means what? Condemning the work to which they have given their lives, and degradation and torture for their families. We do not know for certain why they confessed. But the confessions are no surprise to us. We know the Stalinist regime. And we know that it is capable of any crime.
We support the U.S.S.R. because international socialism has its basis there in the abolition of private property in the means of production. But that basis is today in danger.
Stalin has broken with the socialist revolution, and these trials are the culmination of the degeneration of the Soviet bureaucracy. They have to crush the socialist revolution inside and outside Russia, and we who take no responsibility for the political views of Radek, Zinoviev, Sokolnikov, etc., defend them because we know that their confessions about working under the directions of Trotsky are false and have been extorted from them.
We have dealt with the judicial side of the trial. But infinitely more important is the political side. And it is to that which we shall now address ourselves.
First Published: in Fight,Volume 2. No. 6. May, 1937, pp. 7-9, signed CLRJ;
Transcribed/Marked up: by Ted Crawford/Damon Maxwell.
While one must not ignore the judicial aspects of these trials, yet the political aspects are the side which concern us most. First, therefore, the significance of the trial for the internal position of the Soviet Union. The distinguishing characteristic of the Soviet Union is a huge bureaucracy which swallows up a large share of the economic gains of the revolution, cruelly, mercilessly suppressing the attempts of the workers to lessen this inequality. It controls the country through the party which Stalin dominates and as long as Stalin protects the privileges of the bureaucracy, the bureaucracy is solidly pro-Stalin and supports this uncontrolled despot. But the pressure of the masses is continually forcing itself into the party, and year after year, Stalin purges the party only to find the discontent pushing its way through. The war danger has demanded a yearly expenditure of over a thousand million pounds. This expenditure falls heavily upon the workers. To keep them down the party has had to increase even its former bureaucratic tyranny. But this process could not go on forever. An explosion was inevitable. Stalin, the most astute and relentless bureaucrat who ever lived, tried to forestall it by these trials.
What is the evidence for all this? Stalin himself gives it to us. In the International Press Correspondence of April loth, 1937, appears a speech by him delivered some weeks ago to the Central Committee. Stalin is there pointing out the new road for the party. He says:
“Another example! I have in mind the example of Comrade Nikolayenko. Who is Nikolayenko? Nikolayenko is a rank and file member of the Party, she is an ordinary “little person.” For a whole year she had signalled about a wrong situation in the Party organisation in Kiev, exposing the nepotism, philistine approach to workers, gagging of self-criticism, high-handed action by the Trotskyist wreckers. She was shunned like a bothersome fly. At last in order to get rid of her, they expelled her from the Party. Neither the Kiev organisation, nor the C.C. of the C.P. of the Ukraine helped her to obtain justice. It was only the intervention of the C.C. of the Party, which helped to disentangle that twisted knot. And what was revealed by an examination of the case? It was revealed that Nikolayenko was right, while the Kiev organisation was wrong.”
For years we have pointed out the rotten condition of the C.P.S.U. We were called anti-Soviet. Now comes this damning confession from Stalin, and another report by Zdhanov which shows that this state of affairs is widespread. Something had to be done. Stalin staged his trials, called the Trotskyists wreckers and terrorists and threw all the blame on them; both for the rottenness of the party regime and for the thousands of accidents, due to the reckless speeding-up called the Stakhanovite movement. Conscious of the widespread discontent, he proclaims a new policy, self-criticism, but at the same time he has prepared the way for the judicial assassination of every one of the old Bolsheviks, who could form a rallying point for the opposition. The speech just quoted, later gives warning of a terror to be unloosed, which is enough to freeze the bones of all those who live in that land of terror. Crush Trotskyism is the command. There are not many, only a handful, but crush them, crush them, and so on, page after page, we find in the report. But what is perfectly clear from the speech is that the Party does not believe Stalin. How could it?
If all this wrecking was going on and Pyatakov, Assistant Commissar of Heavy Industry was responsible for it, what was Ordjonokidze, his chief, doing? Was he a Trotskyist? Stalin dared not say that. But Ordjonokidze “died” providentially just when the questions were being asked. And if all the Trotskyists were about wrecking and conspiring, what was Yagoda, head of the G.P.U., doing? Yagoda has been arrested. For Trotskyism? Not yet. But for drunkenness, debauchery, bribery, and stealing from the till like a dishonest shop-assistant.
What a dirty, bloody mess of lies, deceptions and murder, open and secret. We, the Trotskyists, know what the Soviet Union means to Socialism. If it were to get back to Capitalism, to private property, then all the work and hopes of the last twenty years will be blasted, and the international working-class movement will have to begin all over again. But never shall we identify the corrupt, cruel, and depraved Stalinist regime with Socialism. And the Third International, the Independent Labour Party, the Left Book Club, the Friends of the Soviet Union, and all these hangers-on of the Soviet Union who will not face the truth, and who either by their sycophancy or silence protect the Stalinist regime from the consequences of its crimes, these bear a responsibility only less heavy than the criminals themselves.
In this speech, Stalin, after two years of lying about the classless society, now tells us that the class struggle must be fought out still both outside and inside the Soviet Union. But the class-struggle he is fighting is not against Kulaks and capitalists, but on behalf of the bureaucracy against those who try to express the desires of the suffering workers. That battle has gone on for years and the trials show that a climax is approaching.
So much for the internal situation. But the trials too, as everything in the modern world, have an international significance. It is reported and probably with truth that there is a conflict in the bureaucracy between those who wish the Franco-Soviet pact to continue, and those who wish an entente with Germany. The vital issue, however, is: are the workers of the world to trail behind Soviet Union foreign policy and join up with their bourgeoisies in those countries which have the alliance with the Soviet Union, or are they, as Lenin always insisted, to carry on the class-struggle and try to turn the Imperialist War into Civil War? The Third International has been driven by Stalin to adopt the first position. But in Europe and America a Fourth International headed by the hated name of Trotsky is growing. This for Stalin and the Stalinists in Russia would be a disaster. They cannot let the revolutionary movement in Europe get out of their control. Hence their persecution of the revolutionary P.O.U.M. in Spain, and Stalin’s bitter attack in this recent speech against the Fourth International.
National Defence or Turn Imperialist War into Civil War? That is the question, and Radek’s last speech gives us an astonishing indication that, deep-dyed Stalinist as he became, yet in the mind of even that corrupt old Bolshevik, the old Leninist slogan still remained paramount, and in his own crooked way he remains faithful at heart to the revolution as he sees it. In his last statement he is lying and, given the inherent absurdity of his premise, he lies about his psychological reactions at different times, convincingly to some, simply because he is a trained writer and man of letters. (If Gorki had decided to confess, does anyone doubt that wherever he didn’t have to deal with facts, his analysis of his motives would have been moving?)
But Radek tells us on page 542 that he admits his guilt “from motives of the general benefit that this truth must bring.” He knows that the Stalinists need this confession in their desperate effort (vain) to restore confidence of the politically minded masses in their regime. But on the question of Turning Imperialist War into Civil War, Radek uses his last utterance to condemn subtly, but as clearly as he can, the counter-revolutionary policy of Stalin and the Third International. On page 543, he says: “And we must also tell the world what Lenin – I tremble to mention his name from this dock – said in the letter in the directions he gave to the delegation that was about to leave for The Hague about the secret of war.”
Every educated revolutionary knows that document. It is perhaps the most famous of Lenin’s writings on war, and is a merciless condemnation of every other policy except Turn the Imperialist War into Civil War.
Why should Radek choose to remind the world of this at that moment. The answer seems to me clear. He is saying to those who can understand: “Rally round Stalin in Russia, defend the Socialist Fatherland,” but to those outside, even while he is cursing Trotsky he is saying: “Do not be seduced by that lying policy of the Third International. Stick to Lenin’s instructions to the Hague delegation.”
Stalin seeks by the trials not only to deflect unrest at home but prove to the international bourgeoisie that he can be trusted to collaborate with them. But collaboration with the bourgeoisie means the ruin of the workers, and that is why Stalinism outside Russia as inside is a cancer to be cut out of our movement. Everything rests with us in Europe. It is the defeat of the proletariat that drove Smirnov and others like him to capitulation. But Victor Serge tells us of the thousands of Trotskyists in the prisons who will not capitulate, who in the face of every conceivable cruelty and privation, are waiting for the time when the revolution will relieve them. Russia will need these disciples of Lenin some day. It is on us they depend. Radek had no need to remind us of Lenin’s instructions to the Hague delegation. That is our foundation and we are building on it. As the Fourth International grows and forces its way to the head of the masses, the anti-Stalinist forces in Russia will be heartened and strengthened in their resistance. And they need it. Never in history has there been such repression as the Stalinist bureaucracy metes out to these gallant soldiers of the revolution. Yet Stalin could not get one of them to confess, he had to use men who had already capitulated.
Let their example be always with us, and strengthen us in our task to build at all costs and with every sacrifice our section for the Fourth International; to support our comrades in other sections; ceaselessly to expose the treachery and crimes of the Stalinist bureaucracy and the Third International. The trials have had exactly the opposite effect to that which Stalin intended. Everywhere people are listening to us now, moving tentatively towards us. The tide has turned at last. The rest is courage, energy and organization. If the obstacles become greater, at least the rightness of our road becomes clearer every day. We of the Marxist Group and our comrades and allies will follow it without flinching.
LONG LIVE THE SOVIET UNION
DOWN WITH THE STALINIST BUREAUCRACY
FOR THE WORKERS’ PARTY
FOR THE FOURTH INTERNATIONAL.
1. Lenin, Notes On The Tasks Of Our Delegation At The Hague.