APPEAL TO THE WORKERS AND PEASANTS OF BULGARIA TO OPPOSE THE NEW BULGARIAN GOVERNMENT
23 June 1923 Inprekorr, iii, 113, p. 985, 5 July 1923
In Bulgaria a small clique of bankrupt bureaucrats, unemployed officers, and speculators have captured the Government by a military coup d'etat.
The same men who drove the Bulgarian people into the world war, who have 200,000 dead on their conscience, who were three times rejected by the Bulgarian people in democratic elections—this same clique has dared to seize power by a putsch. They are setting up a regime of furious terror against the great majority of the population, against the workers and peasants. The prisons of Bulgaria are being filled with workers and peasants, the villages are being subdued to the will of reactionary adventurers by punitive expeditions. They are shooting the leaders of the peasantry, but have not the courage to take responsibility for their actions.
Tomorrow they will begin to massacre the leaders of the working class also.
The white coup d'etat of the Bulgarian bureaucrats, generals, and speculators took place with the consent and assistance of the social-democratic party, which is a section of the Second International. This party, which shares responsibility for the crimes of the Bulgarian war Government, a party from which all workers have turned away so that it has shrunk to nothing, allowed itself to be used as a fig-leaf for the counterrevolutionary revolt. It has thus shown itself worthy of Noske and Turati, who smoothed the way for the white revolt in Germany and Italy.
The revolt was accomplished with the help of the scum of the European counterrevolution, officers of Wrangel's army, and with the support of Horthy's hangmen and Rumanian boyars. Capitalist Europe, which is hypocritically trying to incite the so-called civilized world against the red terror, is hastening to recognize these murderous and dangerous adventurers. The English Government, the Government of the English landlords and manufacturers, is supporting them, because it hopes to make Bulgaria a bulwark against Soviet Russia. The Italian Government supports them because it sees in the military adventurers of Sofia helpers in the struggle against Yugoslavia. The whole capitalist world has approved the white coup d'etat in Bulgaria. The fascist gangs in all countries see in it a proof that it is easy to trample the working people under foot. We, the Communist International, the union of all militant workers in East and West, call on the Bulgarian workers and peasants, on the international working class, to fight against the Bulgarian putschists.
Peasants of Bulgaria! The victory of the white gangs is a lesson you must understand if you want to free yourselves from the yoke which is being laid on you.
Stambuliski's peasant Government was overthrown because it did not understand the need of uniting with the urban workers. The interests of the great majority of the Bulgarian peasants, who are poor, are at one with the interests of the urban workers and artisans. Stambuliski persecuted the working class and so lost the one support which he could have had in the towns against the clique of bureaucrats and officers who have for forty years exploited and enslaved the Bulgarian people and want to go on doing so.
Stambuliski has paid for his policy with his life. But the Bulgarian peasants are still living, and they must fight if they do not want to go on being treated as cattle. We call on them to unite with the workers in the towns, and to begin the fight with the slogan of establishing a government of urban and rural workers.
Workers of Bulgaria! Stambuliski's Government persecuted the labour movement in the interests of the village bourgeoisie and the village usurers; it sacrificed the interests of the working people in the towns and of the poor peasants. But if Stambuliski's Government persecuted the workers, Tsankov's Government, the Government of bureaucrats and generals, wants to annihilate them. Whoever mistakenly thinks that the struggle of the now triumphant white clique against Stambuliski is a struggle between two bourgeois cliques in which the working class can be neutral, will now be taught better by the bloody persecution of the workers' organizations. The putschists are now the enemy, and must be defeated. Unite for the fight against the white revolt not only with the broad masses of the peasantry, but with the leaders of the peasant party who are still alive. Show them what the split between workers and peasants has led to, and summon them to a common struggle for a workers' and peasants' government.
Peasants of Macedonia! Macedonian revolutionaries! You have let yourselves be misused by the Bulgarian counter-revolution for a coup d'etat, although, as your past shows, your interests and your destiny are closely bound up with the interests of the working people, the interests of the revolution in the Balkans and throughout the world. Stambuliski's Government surrendered Macedonia to the Serbian bourgeoisie in order to get their support. It persecuted you bloodily. But do not think that the counter-revolutionary Government is in a position to liberate the Macedonian people. It will fight against the Bulgarian workers and peasants, against your brothers, but not for the liberation of the Macedonian peasants. In order to secure its rule, it will betray Macedonia a thousand times and oppress you, because it cannot tolerate a revolutionary peasant movement in Macedonia. Only a peasants' and workers' government in Bulgaria will arouse the sympathies of the peasants and workers of Rumania, Yugoslavia, and Greece. That alone will clear the path for the establishment of a Balkan federation of workers' and peasants' governments, which can alone free you without Macedonia again becoming the scene of bloody struggles in which your cottages will be burnt down, your fields laid waste. Macedonian peasants and Macedonian revolutionaries!
However great your resentment of the Bulgarian Peasant Union and its leaders may be, none of you should give the slightest support to the white terror Government in Bulgaria. On the contrary, for the sake of your national liberation you must unite with the militant Bulgarian workers and peasants.
Workers and peasants of Yugoslavia, Rumania, and Greece! Resolutely oppose all those in the Balkans who support Tsankov's Government, surround the ambassadors of these Governments with your hatred, surround white Bulgaria with the wall of your resistance, take advantage of every opportunity to help the peasants and workers of Bulgaria, the brave Bulgarian working people who are beginning the fight against the white Government. Workers of Czechoslovakia, Austria, and Germany! The victory of the fascist group in Bulgaria will encourage the fascist adventurers in your countries. Be on your guard, be vigilant, do not let yourselves be intimidated or taken unawares. Fight energetically against any help being given to white Bulgaria and learn the lesson of Bulgarian reaction and the mistakes of the Bulgarian peasants and workers. Exert all your efforts to create an alliance between the poor peasants and the workers against the attacks of the mercenaries of capital and of the military cliques, and learn to dare severe battles in the hour of danger, if you do not want to pay for your faintheartedness with the lives of the best among you.
Proletarians of all countries!
We appeal to you to watch the development of events in Bulgaria most carefully. We appeal to you to let the broad masses know of all the outrages committed by the victorious clique of Bulgarian fascists against the working people of Bulgaria, helped by the capitalist Governments of all countries; we appeal to you to mobilize these masses against the Government of murderers in Sofia. The warning given by Sofia is as clear as the warning from Rome. The working classes of all countries are in danger. Prepare to defend yourselves.