COMINTERN STATEMENT ON THE CHINESE EASTERN RAILWAY DISPUTE
18 July 1929 Inprecorr, ix, 36, p. 773, 26 July 1929
Working men and women, toilers of the whole world! The danger threatening the cause of peace is growing. Chiang Kai-shek, the executioner of Chinese workers and peasants, acting on the orders of world imperialism, is openly provoking a fresh war against the Soviet Union. The advance of socialist development in the first proletarian State of the world is being watched by imperialism with spiteful rage, inspiring it to redoubled attacks upon the Soviet Union. World imperialism, which is organizing war against the Soviet Union in East and West, in Poland, Rumania, Afghanistan, presses the Nanking Government into service for direct raids on the Soviet Union. The Kuomintang, headed by the betrayers of the national revolution and the executioners of the revolutionary champions of China, is doing its utmost, under the dictates of imperialism, to convert China into a marching ground against the Union.
All the provocatory machinations of the Kuomintang and its Government in Nanking, the raids on the Soviet representatives (Peking), the murders of members of the Soviet consulates (Canton) were frustrated by the firm and steadfast peaceful policy of the Soviet Union. Its wish for peace has, however, been interpreted by the militarists of the Kuomintang and their imperialist advisers as a sign of weakness.
On 10 July the Kuomintang generals seized the Chinese Eastern Railway, confiscated the telegraph service, locked and sealed the Soviet Russian organizations and official centres, and arrested or expelled from the country hundreds of Soviet Russian citizens. The breaking up of the Soviet Russian institutions in Harbin, and the seizure of the railway line, was accompanied by the simultaneous mobilization of military forces, and the concentration of White Guardist troops on the frontiers of the Soviet Union, for the purpose of an adventurers' warlike advance. Inspired by a sincere desire for peace, the Soviet Government replied to the unheard of provocations by proposing to the Kuomintang Government that a conference should be called at once for the peaceful settlement of all points of contention, imposing the sole elementary condition that the acts of despotism and violence and the repressive measures against Soviet Russian citizens should cease immediately. But even to this proposal the Kuomintang Government replied with an insolent refusal, cloaking this beneath lying phrases about alleged Soviet Russian propaganda, thereby unmasking its provocatory line of action. The Soviet Government was obliged to break off diplomatic and commercial relations with the Kuomintang Government, which cynically tore up the agreements concluded with the Soviet Union, the sole country recognizing in actual fact the sovereignty of the Chinese people, the country which is the most faithful friend and ally of the peoples oppressed by imperialism.
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Working men and women, toilers of the world! The Communist International calls upon you to mobilize and organize a determined frustration of the leaders and wire-pullers of the counter-revolutionary campaign against the Soviet Union.
Always remember the fact that behind the pacifist manoeuvres of the bourgeoisie and social democracy, feverish preparations for war are concealed, that the danger of a fresh war becomes more threatening day by day. The provocation organized in the Far East by the Chiang Kai-shek Government, on the commands of the imperialists, bears witness to this.
The insolence of the Chinese counter-revolutionaries has assumed a particularly provocative character since the coming into office of the MacDonald Government, which the Second International represents as being a 'guarantee of peace'. The German social-democracy, which is at the head of the coalition Government, joins the German bourgeoisie in supporting the Nanking adventures and eggs on the Chinese generals.
The French socialists combine with the Poincare Government in an effort to exploit the conflict in the Far East for the reinforcement of the anti-Soviet front.
Everywhere we see the parties of the Second International, now developed into social-fascist parties, standing side by side with counter-revolution, against the Soviet Union, and taking an active part in the drawing up and carrying out of the imperialist war plans.
Working men and women, toiling masses of China! The appeal of the Communist International is directed most of all to you.
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The working masses of China will reply to this adventure, organized by generals who have taken leave of their senses, by binding more closely than ever the tie of brotherly alliance with the proletariat of the Soviet Union, and by the revolutionary struggle against the Chinese and Russian White Guardists.
Workers of India and of the whole East! The object of the fresh provocation from the counter-revolutionary Kuomintang is solely the firmer establishment of the positions of the imperialist bandits, and therewith the imposition of the imperialist yoke on the peoples of the East, the crushing of your heroic struggle. Forward to the fight against world imperialism, against the fresh war, and for the defence of the Soviet Union, the stronghold of the world proletariat, leading at the cost of much sacrifice a bold struggle for the liberation of the oppressed peoples of the East.
Working men and women of the capitalist countries! Behind Chiang Kai-shek there stand the imperialists and their lackeys, the social democrats, who are anxious to sweep from the face of the earth the first proletarian republic, which has inscribed on its banner the liberation of the proletariat and the oppressed peoples of the whole world from the yoke of capitalism and imperialism.