Source: Published in Toward the United Front: Proceedings of the Fourth Congress of the Communist International, 1922 (https://www.haymarketbooks.org/books/897-to-the-masses), pp. 1069-1071.
Translation: Translations by John Riddell
HTML Markup: David Walters & Andy Blunden for the Marxists Internet Archive, 2018
Copyright: John Riddell, 2017. Republished here with permission.
Published: in Toward the United Front: Proceedings of the Fourth Congress of the Communist International, 1922 (https://www.haymarketbooks.org/books/472-toward-the-united-front), pp. 1069-1071.
1. Workers of every country, without distinction of political or trade union alignments, have a stake in the survival and consolidation of Soviet Russia. It is this awareness, combined with deeply rooted feelings of proletarian solidarity, that has moved all workers’ parties to support the campaign of famine relief for Soviet Russia and led millions of working people in all countries to make the greatest sacrifices. This proletarian aid campaign grew into the mightiest and most extended international solidarity campaign in the history of the workers’ movement. With its aid, Soviet Russia has come through the worst days of famine and has conquered hunger.
But already during the famine relief campaign, a large number of the workers’ organisations engaged in it realised that a one-time effort to deliver food supplies was not enough to help Soviet Russia. The economic war of the imperialist states continues against Soviet Russia. The trade blockade persists in the form of a refusal of credits, and in every case where capitalist groups do initiate economic relations, it is done with the goal of walking off from Russia with profits and exploiting Soviet Russia.
As in all other conflicts of Soviet Russia with its imperialist enemies, the workers of all countries have the duty to intervene in the economic war in support of Soviet Russia against its imperialist enemies, and to support Soviet Russia with all means, including those of effective and practical economic assistance.
The best support to Soviet Russia in the economic war is workers’ revolutionary political struggle, and increasing pressure on the government of every country around demands for recognition of the Soviet government and creation of favourable trade relations with it. However, given the importance of Soviet Russia for all working people, political efforts need to be accompanied by the mobilisation of the maximum economic effort by the world proletariat to support Soviet Russia.
Every factory and workplace that Soviet Russia is able to bring into production without capitalist credits provides it with effective help in the struggle against imperialist robbery. Every reinforcement of Soviet Russia, the first workers’ state of the world, strengthens the international proletariat in struggle against its class enemy, the bourgeoisie.
The Fourth Congress of the Communist International therefore considers it the duty of all workers’ parties and organisations, and above all the Communists, alongside their revolutionary political struggle, to carry out a campaign of economic aid among the broadest masses to provide Soviet Russia with immediate and practical assistance in rebuilding its economy.
3. The most important task of proletarian economic aid outside Soviet Russia consists of providing means that make it possible to buy machines, raw materials, tools, etc. for Soviet Russia. In addition to the techniques utilised so far – collections, donations, the organisation of special events, and so on – we must consider the participation of party branches, trade unions, cooperatives, and broader circles of workers in the workers’ loan for Soviet Russia.
Propaganda for proletarian economic aid also provides an outstanding opportunity to develop agitation on behalf of Soviet Russia. It should therefore be carried out in close liaison with the national sections in each country.
Since the question of economic support for Soviet Russia is one of general importance for the entire working class, it is necessary that the campaign be organised and led by committees including delegates of diverse worker organisations, similar to the workers’ famine relief committees for Russia – or that entirely new associations be created. These committees or associations have the task of interesting the broadest layers of workers in economic assistance and winning them to it.
These agencies will be under the supervision of the Communist International.
4. The distribution of funds raised by the committees and associations must be carried out in close consultation with the existing Russian economic agencies, both state and workers’ organisations.
5. Given Russia’s present economic situation, a massive immigration into Russia of workers from abroad would not provide support, but rather would make Russia’s reconstruction more difficult, and should not be encouraged under any circumstances. The immigration into Russia of workers from abroad should be limited to individual specialists who are urgently needed in the factories. Even in such cases, however, it is first necessary to receive agreement and approval from the Russian trade unions.
6. Proletarian economic aid must strive to harmonise two aims: the focusing of international workers’ solidarity on assisting the world’s first proletarian state, and efforts to achieve tangible economic results.
7. In accordance with the principles of socialist cooperation and economic management, any surplus that is achieved may be used only to expand the scope of the campaign.