Leon Trotsky

Maurin and the Anarcho-Syndicalists

Written & Dated: 29 June, 1930.
First published in The Militant of Vol 4, No. 22, Page 4, September 5 of 1931.
Translated: The Militant, individuals unknown.
Transcription/HTML Markup:Riazinov Library & David Walters.
Copyleft: Leon Trotsky Internet Archive (www.marxists.org) 2011. Permission is granted to copy and/or distribute this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 .

We must pitilessly criticize Maurin without surcease; the events will completely confirm our criticism. In a short time Maurin will only be a comical figure with his provincial reflections, his corroded doctrines and his primitive slogans. Everything lies in knowing who will succeed him. The Left Opposition will be unable to become a leading force in Spain without being one in Catalonia.

The second urgent question is that of the anarcho-syndicalists. It is indispensable to publish a pamphlet against anarcho-syndicalism and to distribute it widely not only in Spain, but also in other countries. Have you read the articles by Monatte [leading French syndicalist.—Ed.] in which he expresses his hope to see the Spanish anarcho-syndicalists oppose to the Bolshevik state a genuinely “anarchist” state? The whole fate of world anarchism, or rather of the fragments saved from the Russian revolution, is intimately bound up today with the fate of Spanish anarcho-syndicalism. And since anarcho-syndicalism in Spain is moving inevitably to the most pitiful and ridiculous bankruptcy, there is no doubt that the Spanish revolution will be the tombstone of anarchism. But attention must be paid so that the tombstone of anarcho-syndicalism does not at the same time become the one of the revolution. If Maurin is the temporary cover for the Stalinists, anarcho-syndicalism is a temporary cover for the socialists and the republicans, that is, for the bourgeoisie. Just as Maurin can turn over the advanced Catalonian workers into the hands of the Centrist bureaucracy, so the anarcho-syndicalists can turn over the whole revolution into the hands of the bourgeoisie. The theoretical and practical struggle against anarcho-syndicalism now stands on the order of the day. It is manifest that this struggle must be conducted on the basis of the policy of the united front, of the unity of the trade union organization, etc. But we must unmask the leaders of anarcho-syndicalism and, above all, expose that pitiful lay priest of a Pestagna who will undoubtedly play the most infamous and cowardly rule in the coming developments of the revolution . . .

The samples of Maurin’s speeches produce a painful impression. Contrary to us, he considers, you see. the Five Year Plan as an acquisition of the revolution: Can it be that he has read nothing?

By the way, the Reuter Press Agency and other agencies with it, are spreading false telegrams concerning alleged articles and interviews with me on the Five Year Plan (complete failure, falsehood, etc. . . ). It is extremely important to unmask and to deny these infamies. In the present case, the bourgeoisie uses against the Stalinists the latter’s own falsehoods and calumnies. . .

Kadikoy, June 29, 1931


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Last updated on: 2 January 2011