Encyclopedia of Trotskyism On-Line: Revolutionary History



Dear Comrades,

Reading the accounts of the Trotskyists in France during the Nazi occupation, I am even more convinced that it was a huge mistake to refuse to participate in the Resistance because it was a ‘bourgeois’ movement. Some of its groups, for example the OCM, were outright chauvinist and fascist, but others like the ‘Liberation-Nord’ (Socialist controlled) and the FTP (Communist Party controlled) were not. Whatever the difficulties and dangers, if the Trotskyists had established a presence in these, it would have given them a much better springboard during and after the liberation.

Having said this, I think the influence and prestige of the Stalinists and the general situation was such that whatever the Trotskyists did would have been ineffective. If a strong left opposition current had developed in the CP, the FTP and the CGT, then indeed the situation would have changed. But the fact that it did not is itself a pointer to the general mood of the working class – unfortunately more patriotic than revolutionary!

Best wishes
Harry Ratner

Updated by ETOL: 5.7.2003