Fragments of Truth From
Under the Garbage of Slander


Source: The Militant, Vol. IV No. 18, 8 August 1931, p. 3.
Transcription/HTML Mark-up: Einde O’Callaghan for the Trotsky Internet Archive.
Copyleft: Leon Trotsky Internet Archive ( 2013. Permission is granted to copy and/or distribute this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0.

In 1924, Zinoviev set into circulation an accusation against Trotsky for issuing the railroad “Order 1042”, which was supposed to have nearly ruined transportation. Upon this canvas, Stalin, Yaroslavsky and Rudzutak embroidered their designs. The legend made its rounds in its day throughout the press of the Comintern. In a letter by Trotsky to the Institute for Party History, the actual comments of Lenin and Dzerzhinsky on Order 1042 and its significance for transportation are reproduced. But it appears that there is a comment of more recent origin. In the Annual of the Comintern which appeared in 1923, that is, on the eve of the campaign against Trotsky, in an article The Transport of the R.S.F.S.R. and Its Rehabilitation the following is said literally:

“At this time, transportation was completely ruined. There was not only no talk about its rehabilitation, but matters went so far that in the Council of Labor and Defense, a member of the collegium of the People’s Commissariat of Transportation, Professor Lomonossov, made a report to the effect that transportation is on the eve of complete and unavoidable standstill. Comrade Trotsky, having undertaken the direction of transportation, advanced two slogans which had a decisive significance not only for transportation but for the whole economy of the country ... Order 1042 is an historical one. According to it, the locomotives were to be rehabilitated within five years. The Communist propagation of this Order and the Communist rise which this produced should be recognized as the highest level attained by the increase of the masses’ readiness for labor – for feats.” (Annual of the Comintern, Publishing House of the Comintern, Petrograd-Moscow 1923, page 363)

And so on and so forth. As we see, the function of “Order 1042” was different at different periods.

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Last updated on: 13.1.2013