Communist Party of Great Britain

Manifesto of the Communist Party of Great Britain1

Source: The Communist International, No. 7, July 1940
Transcription\HTML Markup: Brian Reid
Proofreader: David Tate
Public Domain: Marxists Internet Archive (2009). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.

A MANIFESTO of the Communist Party of Great Britain declares among other things the following:

Now that the full horror of mechanized warfare is to be unloosed against the people of Britain, with all its danger to life and limb, to innocent women and children, to the democratic organizations of the working class movement, there is growing recognition of the situation ahead. But it can be faced. The workers can defeat all enemies within and without if, in the first place, the organized workers get together and act now in defense of democracy, liberties, lives and homes. Only the organized working class can lead and save the people. A new government must come to power now, a government really representative of the working class, a people’s government in which there is not a representative of imperialism or a friend of fascism, a government which shall be capable of organizing the defense of the people and in the unity of the working people of all countries find a way to peace that is not a peace of subjection. The Communist Party calls on all workers in the factories, trade unions, local Labor Parties, Cooperative Guilds to get together and develop a movement which will secure the formation of such a government. . . . We of the Communist Party, who have consistently fought for the real defense and interests of the people, who have consistently given warnings of the outcome now reached, put forward now the most urgent measures which need immediately to be carried through:

1. Clear out all supporters of fascism, the men of Munich, from commanding positions.

2. Conscript wealth and nationalize the key industries, banks, transport, mines. Establish equal distribution of food supply.

3. Secure the election of workers’ control committees in the factories to safeguard workers’ conditions and end waste and profiteering.

4. Arm the workers in the factories.

5. Provide increased pay for men in the armed forces; give adequate allowances and pensions to their dependents. Break down the class system of the appointment of officers.

6. Provide more adequate air-raid precautions and evacuation schemes.

7. Withdraw all regulations that take away the right of free speech, press, meeting and organization of the working class movement.

8. Cancel the partition of Ireland; give full freedom to the Indian people and all peoples of the British Empire.

9. Build up unity and close friendly relations with the Soviet Union and the working people of all countries.

* * *

A message to the French people sent by the Communist Party of Great Britain to the Communist Party of France, states among other things the following:

In this hour of terrible suffering and disaster of the workers and peasants of France the Communist Party of Great Britain expresses deepest sympathy and sends warmest fraternal greetings to the working people of France. The magnificent courage and heroism of the French workers in their struggle against fascism have been betrayed by the Two Hundred Families who for years plotted with foreign fascism against the interests of the French people. At their bidding Daladier and Blum destroyed the People’s Front through which the most powerful forces had been mobilized for struggle against fascism.

At their bidding republican Spain and Czechoslovakia, were betrayed; at their bidding this war was begun—and step by step the armies of France were betrayed. Now France lies desolate with the fascist invader overrunning her fairest provinces, capital and great industrial region. A military dictatorship oppresses the French people. The treachery of the Government’s politicians has been completed by capitulation.

But the working people of France and their Communist Party have not capitulated. In conditions of the greatest difficulty and hardship they carry forward the glorious traditions of the French people. The flame of revolutionary France burns steadily. We assure the working people of France of our solidarity and action in the coming struggle against those who have betrayed France and those who have conquered France through that betrayal. We recognize the heavy responsibility of the British Government, the Fifth Column and the Munich-men for the present position of France and for the sufferings of the people. We fight side by side with you against the common enemies, inspired by the knowledge that the workers and peasants of France, led by the Communist Party, will find the way to achieving the unity of the French people and victory in the struggle for an independent, free and happy France.



1.  This and the following document appeared in the Daily Worker, London, June 24, 1940.