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Jack Weber

March of Events

(30 June 1934)

From The Militant, Vol. VII No. 26, 30 June 1934, p. 2.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

Contraction of the Stalinist Bureaucracy

The more the Stalinist bureaucracy loses its mass support, the more it feels its isolation and divorce from the masses, the greater becomes its contraction into a bureaucratic directory. The process of elimination of all control, even the fictitious control by the left-over apparatus of what was once the powerful Russian Communist party, goes on apace. Nothing could prove more conclusively the utter disintegration of the Russian Party than the cavalier fashion in which the most prized symbols of Soviet power created by the revolutionary Bolsheviks are ushered out of existence.

A stroke of Stalin’s pen is enough to wipe out the Workers and Peasants’ Inspection. Lenin hailed this institution as the means of uprooting the growing bureaucracy which he saw menacing the progress of the proletarian dictatorship. Ironically enough, Stalin placed Ordjanikidze at the head of this organization, formed to eliminate these very Ordjanikidzes. It will be remembered that Lenin had demanded the expulsion of this same Ordjanikidze for his high-handed bureaucracy in the Caucasus. And to think of this man made head of the Control Commission!

Following this blow at the October Revolution there came the elimination by simple decree (there could be no discussion of such vital problems in a dead party) of the once all-powerful G.P.U. The latter institution embodied a force of bureaucrats knowing too much of Stalinist intrigue and methods of dealing with opposition.

The Bonapartist Danger

Now comes a still more ominous step in the direction of Thermidor and Bonapartism. This is the abolition of the Peoples’ Commissariat of War (the Revolutionary War Council) and the concentration of power in the hands of Voroshiloff as Supreme Commander of the Red Army. We recall that these same bureaucrats, aiming at this type of uncontrolled Bonapartist power attributed their own design to Comrade Trotsky, creator of the Red Army and organizer of its revolutionary successes. The bureaucracy naturally cloaks its arbitrary acts under the guise of increasing efficiency and individual initiative and responsibility. (And who is to bring this reactionary clique to task for inefficiency, nay for its crimes against the international proletariat and the October Revolution?)

As the danger of imperialist war looms closer and closer the Stalinist bureaucracy entrenches itself ever more firmly. One can see the outlines of a future Directory of Public Safety established for the “efficient” carrying out of Soviet defense. Whether this Directory will consist of its present candidates, – Stalin, Voroshiloff, Molotoff, Kaganowitch, Ordjonikdze – no one can now predict, for developments become rapid during national crises. That the dictatorship of the proletariat that has not yet been liquidated, since the Soviet system still endures, is nevertheless under the gravest danger from the ever contracting bureaucracy, goes without saying.

Build New Parties

The fate of the international revolution, which means the fate of the Soviet Union, for the years to come depends on the rallying of the revolutionary vanguard of the world’s working class under the banner of the Fourth International, on the speed with which the new parties of the Fourth International can be constituted. The Russian workers have forgotten their leading role in the world revolution. Stalinist defeats have turned their attention inwards on national problems. Only a new party of Internationalist Communists in the Soviet Union too can guide the Russian masses back on the road of world revolution. Only the new party can prepare for the dangers that He ahead in the further evolution of the proletarian dictatorship in the Soviet Union. The defense of the Soviet Union becomes linked more and more abroad and at home with the construction of the Fourth International.

The Infallibility of Stalinism

As this Militant goes to press the Daily Worker comes out with an offer of United Front in the struggle against fascism – with the new executive committee of the Socialist Party. What will become of the infallibility of the Stalinist leadership with such an offer made from organization to organization? Is this a United Front from below or from above? We shall await with interest the outcome of this most belated action. Needless to say, the past of the Stalinist Party here has hardly led up to a ready acceptance of such an offer by anybody. Events will demonstrate whether this is a maneuver to save the party from the type of split that occurred in St. Denis.

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