THE SOUVARINE COMMISSION
OF THE FIFTH COMINTERN CONGRESS
July 1924 Thesen und Resolutionen, v, p. 187
In the course of its work the Souvarine commission has come to the conclusion that communist discipline in the French Communist Party is still far from being completely and unconditionally applied. The commission is of the opinion that it is absolutely essential for the enlarged Executive of the CI to intervene energetically by means of an open letter to the party membership, to remind them of the real meaning of party discipline, and to demand of them to ensure its strictest application, with severe penalties for every serious breach of discipline and all personal policy, from whatever member of the party it may proceed.
After hearing several comrades of the French delegation and comrade Boris Souvarine, and after a careful examination of all the material concerning the breaches of discipline with which comrade Souvarine is charged, the commission is unanimously of the opinion:
1. that Souvarine has committed breaches of discipline of the gravest kind, by
(a) his statement in the Bulletin Communiste;
(b) his letters to the subscribers to the Bulletin Communiste containing attacks on the party central committee;
(c) his publication, without the knowledge of the customary party authorities, of comrade Trotsky's pamphlet The New Course, with an introduction hostile to the party and the CI;
2. that these actions show that Souvarine's conduct is governed by a pettybourgeois spirit which places personal feelings above party interests;
3. that this attitude on the part of a particularly responsible party comrade has brought confusion into the ranks of the CPF, and has indeed endangered party discipline as such;
4. that the explanations given by comrade Souvarine do not mitigate the gravity of his breaches of discipline, which were repeated over many months; and that they bear witness to the same petty-bourgeois cast of mind which characterized his entire attitude during the events which aroused such excitement in the party.
The commission therefore recommends to the ECCI:
1. To agree to the request put forward by the CPF delegation to the fifth congress to expel comrade Souvarine;
2. to grant the French section of the CI the right to propose Souvarine's readmission at the sixth world congress of the CI if, during the interval, he shows a loyal attitude to the party and the CI.