Spector Archive   |   Trotskyist Writers Index  |   ETOL Main Page


Solidarity on the Streets

New York Demonstrates for India

(July 1930)

From The Militant, Vol. III No. 26, 12 July 1930, p. 8.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

The British consulate was the scene of a militant demonstration of 1,500 work[a line of text is missing]tion. Following the mass meeting in Battery Park the march of the workers on Whitehall Street began. Shouting revolutionary slogans and singing revolutionary battle songs, the procession advanced to the vicinity of the consulate. It was here that Mulrooney's police thugs swept in with their accustomed brutalities. One worker who attempted to address the mass from the steps of the building was [attacked by] the police and pulled down.

This was the signal for a concerted onslaught of the police on the demonstrators. The workers fought back bravely until the police reinforcement arrived in the shape of an emergency wagon with sirens shrieking, prepared to hurl tear bombs Four comrades were arrested, Rollins, Manusky, L.B. Cohen and one other. Several workers were terribly manhandled and one Beatrice Blosser was knocked unconscious.

The demonstration was called by the New York district of the Communist Party and all workers organizations were invited to participate. The Communist League (Opposition) in New York immediately signified its decision to take part. We wrote a letter to the International Labor Defense notifying them of our intention and asking whether legal aid and defense would be extended to any comrades of the Opposition who would be arrested in the course of the demonstration. We received no reply from the I.L.D. which still leaves the question open whether the I.L.D. is an organization for the defense of the revolutionary movement at large or only the auxiliary for the defense of the adherents of the Stalin faction which momentarily controls the Party machinery.

Immediately we arrived at the demonstration we unfurled the banner of the Communist League which bore slogans denouncing British Imperialism and manifesting solidarity with the Indian Revolution. It was here that the functionaries of the Stalin group struck an ugly note that threatened to disrupt the mass meeting before the demonstration could get under way. A series of physical attacks began on our comrades who carried the placards bearing our slogans and Militants. Among the rank and file Party comrades there was a noticeable current to resist this breach by their officials of the united front of the demonstration. But the officials went around agitating for a pogrom and comrades Berman and George Clarke were set upon by the functionaries tools, certain half-underworld types that have bored their way into the Communist Party under the present regime. Finally our placard was destroyed, but our comrades held their ground staunchly and would not be eliminated. While the Daily Worker maintains silence regarding our presence at the demonstration, the Freiheit, and the Uj Elore both shamefully surpass themselves.

The Freiheit is the Party organ whose editor is the old Menshevik, Olgin, Abe Cahan's old crony and a former strong believer in the Sisson documents that "Lenin and Trotsky were German spies". This Freiheit came out with the unspeakable statement that the "Left renegades were in a united front with the detectives to break up the meeting, etc., etc." It would be tragic if it were not so ridiculous that no worker in his senses reads this without shrugging his shoulders and feeling ashamed that what was once a Communist paper should have sink to the degraded spiritual level of the yellow Forward.

We repeat—such factional tactics will not deter us. As Communists we continue to participate in every class struggle demonstration of the Party against capitalism and imperialism, without abandoning our Marxist right and duty to work for the clarification of principles, the correction of political blunders, and a Bolshevik Party regime.

Maurice Spector Archive   |   ETOL Main Page

Last updated: 22.10.2012