Albert Inkpin & Arthur MacManus

The Threatened War Against Russia

The First Communist Party of Great Britain Circular

Written: August 5, 1920
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The Threatened War Against Russia

To the Branch Secretaries of the Communist Party


There is no need to remind you of the importance of saving Soviet Russia from the attacks of the capitalist governments. For nearly three years you have worked loyally and well to that end. Your efforts, according to their own admissions, have paralysed the militarists’ attempts to crush our Russian comrades, for they realise how deeply “Hands off Russia” propaganda has sunk into the minds of the workers.

But this is a supreme moment for action. War—definite, open, bloody war—in support of the Polish nationalists, is threatened against Russia. The Polish attack was secretly instigated and secretly prepared; the Polish request for an armistice a trick to gain time. Otherwise the Polish delegates at Baranovitchi would have been instructed to discuss the terms of peace which all along had been assumed to be the object of the armistice.

Comrades, the government must be told in plain terms that the workers will not have war aginst Soviet Russia. It is our duty deliberately to advise the workers not only to refuse all service for that purpose, but to oppose it actively.

The Communist Party, in the first days of its existence, must be worthy of its mission. Let us rise to the height of a great occasion.

Call meetings in your district to denounce the new war. Wherever meetings have been arranged for this week-end make them specifically for this object.

Get into touch with the organised workers in your district through the trade union branches, trade councils, shop steward committees—everywhere—and urge them immediately to notify the government that they will not make nor handle munitions, nor volunteer for service, nor be pressed into service, but will actively oppose, by general strike, this threatened campaign.

Speak boldly and act quickly. Neglect nothing. On the shoulders of every individual member of the Communist party rests the fate of Russia at this critical moment. Let every member, therefore, be a missionary for the salvation of Russia lest we be branded with the infamy of crushing by our apathy the first Socialist Republic, and our own hopes and ideals at the same time.

Yours fraternally,

Arthur MacManis, Chairman.
Albert Inkpin, Secretary.