William F. Warde

GPU Lynch Campaign Is
on International Scale

Seeks to Destroy Anti-Fascist Opponents of Stalinism
by Incitations to Violence

(14 March 1942)

Source: The Militant, Vol. VI No. 11, 14 March 1942, p. 4.
Transcription/Editing/HTML Markup: 2021 by Einde O’Callaghan.
Public Domain: George Novack Internet Archive 2021. This work is completely free. In any reproduction, we ask that you cite this Internet address and the publishing information above.

The Stalinist GPU through its various national sections and sympathetic agencies has launched a new campaign of slander and violence against its opponents within the labor movement.

In Mexico the Communist press has singled out for attack Grandizo Muniz, Marceau Pivert, Victor Serge, Julian Gorkin and Gustav Regler, and demanded their “suppression” as “fifth columnists,” “agents of Hitler,” “gangsters,” “spies” and “saboteurs.” A group of deputies, hypocritically claiming to be “democratic” but in reality agents of the Communist Party, has introduced a resolution into the Mexican Chamber of Deputies, demanding the expulsion or imprisonment of these refugees.

The Communist press has published open incitements to assassination by calling for the formation of “Vigilante Committees” to deal with these individuals.

This campaign of provocations is identical with that preceding the May 24, 1940 machine-gun raid on Trotsky’s house by a vigilante gang led by the Mexican Communist, David Siquieros, which resulted in the murder of Sheldon Harte, Trotsky’s bodyguard, and afterwards in the assassination of Trotsky himself by an agent of the GPU.

All five of these anti-fascist refugees have long records of service in the international labor movement; several fought arms in hand against the fascists in Spain; all have prices placed on their heads by Hitler, Franco or Petain. We solidarize ourselves with the protest sent to President Camacho of Mexico last month by more than 225 noted American labor and liberal leaders, or behalf of these victims of the Stalinist campaign of character assassination.

Campaign in Britain

In England the Communist Party has ordered its members “to treat the Trotskyists as you would a Nazi.” They have used physical violence against salesmen of the Trotskyist and other labor papers. The Sunday Dispatch, owned by fascist-minded Lord Rothermere, the British equivalent of Hearst, has repeated the Stalinist slanders against the Trotskyists to justify its campaign for the repression of all militant workers.

Now the Stalinists, under cover of jingo prejudices inflamed by the war, are extending their poisonous activities to the United States. The sole editorial in the Daily Worker of Mar. 2 viciously attacked Serge, Muniz and their defenders and recommended “stern measures” against them. The Stalinist leaders seek to take advantage of the heroic resistance of the Red Army to vilify, terrorize, and get rid of their political opponents. High government authorities not only look with indulgence upon these attempts but even lend “ideological” assistance by approving the publication of such whitewashes of Stalin’s infamous Moscow trials and purges as Ex-Ambassador Davies’ Mission to Moscow.

The Main Targets

The Trotskyists, now as always, are the main targets of these attacks. Opponents of Stalinist policies in the labor movement whose ideas differ from ours are designated by the Stalinist press as “Trotskyists.” The Stalinist lynch campaign against us has been rendered difficult by the government trial and conviction of the Trotskyist leaders in Minneapolis as revolutionary socialists, as “followers of V.I. Lenin and Leon Trotsky” who “accept as the ideal formula for the carrying out of their said objectives the Russian Revolution of 1917.”

But the leaders of the Communist Party in this country, as in others, are obliged to undertake this slander campaign under supervision of the GPU and in compliance with the reactionary policies of Stalin’s regime. In exchange for proffered material support and political flattery, Stalin has sold the services of the Communist International to his capitalist allies. During the Stalin-Hitler pact, the Communist parties, following Stalin’s instructions, opposed Roosevelt and Churchill’s policies while they remained silent about Hitler’s crimes. In Nazi-occupied countries names and addresses of revolutionary opponents to Communist Party policies were handed over to the Gestapo.

Today the Communist Parties, again following Stalin’s orders are performing similar chores for the Allied governments. They act as strikebreakers and agents of the bosses in the trade-unions. They do not – and will not – hesitate to act as fingermen against militant workers. Their slander campaigns against the Trotskyists are designed to create a favorable atmosphere to enable them to carry out these assignments with impunity.

They Hate Our Policies

The Stalinists persecute us Trotskyists with such savage hatred because we arc the most relentless and uncompromising opponents of their reactionary and treacherous policies in the labor movement. We alone among the working class parties carry forward the struggle for the interests of the working masses in the spirit of revolutionary internationalism. We unconditionally defend the Soviet Union. At the same time we expose and condemn the domestic and foreign policies of Stalin which serve to undermine that defense. We call for the establishment of a Workers’ and Farmers’ Government in the United States which can institute socialism in place of capitalist anarchy and we fight all forms of fascism to the death.

These Trotskyist ideas are penetrating the ranks of the Communist Party. The Stalinist slanders and falsifications are calculated to prevent their duped followers from learning the truth about Trotskyism.

The poisonous propaganda spread by the Stalinists against us repeats the lies used against revolutionary socialists by the imperialists and their agents in the last war. In the days of the Russian Revolution Lenin and Trotsky were indicted by Kerensky as “agents of the German General Staff.” Karl Liebknecht was denounced in Germany as a “paid agent of the Entente.” Eugene V. Debs was branded as an agent of the Kaiser for opposing the war in this country. Today every militant worker who stands up for the rights of labor is liable to be accused by capitalist reactionaries and Stalinists of “sabotage” and “aiding the Axis.”

The Struggle Against Fascism

The Trotskyist record of struggle against fascism is unimpeachable. The German Trotskyists now imprisoned in Hitler’s jails and concentration camps testify to our undying opposition to fascism. So do the Trotskyists who died fighting in the front lines against Franco in the Spanish Civil War. So does Jean Meichler, French Trotskyist recently shot as a hostage by the Germans in occupied Paris.

No one has assisted the fascists in the past decade more than the Stalinists. While Trotsky was urging a genuine fighting united front of labor to beat down the Nazis before Hitler came to power, the Stalinist leaders were preparing to surrender without a battle and boasting that: “After Hitler will come our turn.” While the Trotskyists warned the Spanish and French workers against coalition with the capitalist parties, the Stalinists were promoting the Popular Front policies which doomed both “democracy” and the labor movement to destruction by fascism. Stalin’s pact enabled Hitler to overrun Europe, to demoralize the working masses, and to take the Soviet Union by surprise with his attack.

Now the Stalinists crown their crimes against the working class by giving “all-out” support to the policies of Roosevelt and Churchill – and attacking those who remain true to the revolutionary socialism of Lenin, Liebknecht and Trotsky.

No lies, persecutions or murders by the Stalinist gang will prevent us from carrying on our struggle for socialism.


Last updated on: 21 August 2021