Greeting Message of the Comintern (SH)
on occasion of the 150th anniversary of the foundation of the First International
28. 9. 1864 – 28. 9. 2014
Dear comrades !
Today, the Comintern (SH), its Sections and the whole communist world movement celebrate the 150th anniversary of the First International, whose founders were Karl Marx and Frederick Engels.
It was Karl Marx who issued the historical birth certificate for the communist world movement with his famous inaugural address.
It was Karl Marx who created the world communist movement in the spirit of proletarian internationalism.
It was Karl Marx who combined both the theoretical and practical international class struggle of the proletariat with the prior-ranking, world-revolutionary aim:
"To conquer political power has become the great duty of the working classes." (Marx, Inaugural-Adresse, 1864).
"My life will be devoted (...) to the triumph (...) of the universal rule of the proletariat." (1872, MEW, Marx - Volume 23, page 256, English edition).
The foundation of the First International is the most significant achievement in the history of the workers' movement of the 19th century.
The First international was the highest organisational expression of the first period of the international workers' movement - namely expressively under the banner of communism. The First International paved the way for the Second and Third International, and last not least for the Comintern (SH), as the communist world party of the world proletariat in its global struggle for the overthrow of world capitalism, for the construction of world socialism and finally creation of the classless world society.
In his famous book "Civil War in France" (1871), Marx himself called the First International:
"the international counter-organisation of labour against the world-bourgeois conspiracy of capital."
And Lenin appreciated the historical significance of the First International in the following quotations:
"The First International (1864-72) laid the foundation of an international organisation of the workers for the preparation of their revolutionary attack on capital. The Second International (1889-1914) was an international organisation of the proletarian movement whose growth proceeded in breadth, at the cost of a temporary drop in the revolutionary level, a temporary strengthening of opportunism, which in the end led to the disgraceful collapse of this International.
The Third International actually emerged in 1918, when the long years of struggle against opportunism and social-chauvinism, especially during the war, led to the formation of Communist Parties in a number of countries. Officially, the Third International was founded at its First Congress, in March 1919, in Moscow. And the most characteristic feature of this International, its mission of fulfilling, of implementing the precepts of Marxism, and of achieving the age-old ideals of socialism and the working-class movement - this most characteristic feature of the Third International has manifested itself immediately in the fact that the new, third, 'International Working Men's Association' has already begun to develop, to a certain extent, into a union of Soviet Socialist Republics."
„The revival of the democratic movements in the late fifties and in the sixties recalled Marx to practical activity. In 1864 (September 28) the International Workingmen's Association - the celebrated First International - was founded in London. Marx was heart and soul of this organisation, and author of its first Address and of a host of resolutions, declarations and manifestos. In uniting the labour movement of various countries, striving to channel into joint activity the various forms of non-proletarian, pre-Marxist socialism (Mazzini, Proudhon, Bakunin, liberal trade-unionism in Britain, Lassallean vacillations to the right in Germany, etc.), and in combating the theories of all these sects and schools, Marx hammered out a uniform tactic for the proletarian struggle of the working class in the various countries. Following the down fall of the Paris Commune (1871) - of which Marx gave such a profound, clear-cut, brilliant, effective and revolutionary analysis (The Civil War in France, 1871) - and the Bakunist-caused cleavage in the International, the latter organisation could no longer exist in Europe. After the Hague Congress of the International (1872), Marx and the General Council of the International transferred to New York. The First International had played its historical part, and now made way for a period of a far greater development of the labour movement in all countries in the world, a period in which the movement grew in scope, and mass socialist working-class parties in individual states were founded." (Lenin, Collected Works, Volume 21, page 49, English edition). [ In 1876 the First International was officially disbanded at a conference in Philadelphia - remark of the editor]
"In 1864 Marx founded the International Working Men's Association, and led this society for a whole decade. Engels also took an active part in its affairs. The work of the International Association, which, in accordance with Marx's idea, united proletarians of all countries, was of tremendous significance in the development of the working-class movement. But even with the closing down of the International Association in the seventies, the unifying role of Marx and Engels did not cease. On the contrary, it may be said that their importance as the spiritual leaders of the working-class movement grew uninterruptedly. After the death of Marx, Engels continued alone as the counsellor and leader of the European socialists." (Lenin, Collected Works, Volume 2, page 26, English edition)
"In the sixties the struggle shifted from the field of general theory to one closer to the direct labour movement: the ejection of Bakunism from the International. In the early seventies the stage in Germany was occupied for a short while by the Proudhonist Mühlberger, and in the late seventies by the positivist Dühring. But the influence of both on the proletariat was already absolutely insignificant. Marxism was already gaining an unquestionable victory over all other ideologies in the labour movement. By the nineties this victory was in the main completed. Even in the Latin countries, where the traditions of Proudhonism held their ground longest of all, the workers' parties in effect built their programmes and their tactics on Marxist foundations. The revived international organisation of the labour movement - in the shape of periodical international congresses - from the outset, and almost without a struggle, adopted the Marxist standpoint in all essentials. But after Marxism had ousted all the more or less integral doctrines hostile to it, the tendencies expressed in those doctrines began to seek other channels. The forms and causes of the struggle changed, but the struggle continued. And the second half-century of the existence of Marxism began (in the nineties) with the struggle of a trend hostile to Marxism within Marxism itself.( Lenin, Collected Works, Volume 15, page 32, English edition)
"The recent Congress in Stuttgart [18-24 August 1907] was the twelfth congress of the proletarian International. The first five congresses belong to the period of the First International (1866-72), which was guided by Marx, who, as Bebel aptly observed, tried to achieve international unity of the militant proletariat from above. This attempt could not be successful until the national socialist parties were consolidated and strengthened, but the activities of the First International rendered great services to the labour movement of all countries and left lasting traces." (Lenin, Collected Works, Volume 13, page 82)
Lenin called "the International, the International led by Marx, which had begun to 'rally the legions' of the proletariat, to unite "the world of labour", which is 'abandoning the world of those who enjoy without working'." (Lenin, Collected Works, Volume 18, page 27, English edition).
"The First International, founded by Marx, existed from 1864 to 1872. The defeat of the heroic workers of Paris - of the celebrated Paris Commune - marked the end of this International. It is unforgettable, it will remain for ever in the history of the workers' struggle for their emancipation. It laid the foundation of the edifice of the world socialist republic which it is now our good fortune to be building. (Lenin Collected Works, Volume 29, page 240, English edition)
"The First International laid the foundation of the proletarian, international struggle for socialism."
The Second International marked the a period in which the soil was prepared for the broad, mass spread of movement in a number of countries.
The Third International has gathered the fruits of the work of the Second International, discarded its opportunist, social-chauvinist, bourgeois and petty-bourgeois dross, and has begun to implement the dictatorship of the proletariat.
The epoch-making significance of the Third, Communist International lies in its having begun to give effect to Marx' cardinal slogan, the slogan which sums up the centuries-old development of socialism and the working-class movement, the slogan which is expressed in the concept of the dictatorship of the proletariat. This prevision and this theory - the prevision and theory of a genius - are becoming a reality."
(Lenin, The Third International and its place in history, April 15, 1919, Volume 29, page 307, English edition)
And the implementation of the dictatorship of the world proletariat - this is the great slogan of our Comintern (SH) !
The tendency of the globalization of the contradiction between Capital and Labour began to become effective in its very first stage of development, especially after the crisis of the fifties. This underlines the early beginning of the international Labour movement and the objective necessity of the foundation of the First International.
The success of the First International was based in the historical situation of the international awakening of the proletariat, based in the really existing workers' movement. The opportunists praised its spontaneism which was limited in reformist demands – leaving the power of capital untouched. In the contrary, Marx developed the First International as an revolutionary instrument of basically overcome and eliminate the world capital.
The First International united the economic with the political class-struggle. Whereas, economic struggle is a school of "guerrilla war between capital and labor, is a school of communism."
The proletariat realized that capitalism can not be overthrown without the formation of an united front of the workers of all countries. Therefore, the vanguard of the working class must form its own revolutionary political world organization in the fight against the rule of the bourgeoisie and for the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat.
The constant material and moral support for the striking and locked-out workers in different countries, increased and promoted the spread of the influence of the First International throughout the international labour movement. But the real importance of the First International was that it propagated the final aim of world communism. Above all, the success of the First International was the fact that it guided the broad masses of workers in the political struggle for the conquest of workers' power. The First International was the first organisation in the history of the workers' movement that coordinated the united proletarian actions internationally. This was above all the merit of Karl Marx, who was at the head of the First International. For Engels, Marx was the only one "who was clear about what had to be done and what had to be founded. Marx was the man who heralded the slogan 'Proletarians of all countries, unite!' in the year of 1848."
If the First International would had done nothing else than making the proletariat conscious about the fundamental principle
"the emancipation of the working class must be conquered by the working class itself",
as Marx put it in the "Statutes", this would already be great enough . But the First International did more: it roused the spirit of international solidarity, and developed an independent international foreign policy of the working class.
While Marx guided the First International, he wrote at the same time the famous "Capital" of which Engels said; "No book had been of such importance to the workers as this book" (Engels, Volume 16, page 235, German edition). Marx applied many knowledges to his practical work of the First International that he gained in his book "The Capital" ( partly literally). The "Capital" was the most significant theoretical work and the First International was the most important practical work of Karl Marx.
Both the "Capital" and the First International were created at the same time and formed a theoretical and practical unity of the most powerful, invincible weapon of the proletariat (not only) in the 19th century. As long as the capitalist world slavery exists, the inseparability of these two great works will be of world-historical importance.
All wrong concepts that have been represented in the First International, expressed the passivity and subjugation of the proletariat under the capital. Karl Marx pushed away all these anti-proletarian influences within the First International. He pointed to the theoretical role and importance of the economic struggle of the workers and simultaneously he subordinated the economical struggle under the political aims - namely the liberation of labour from capital and the revolutionary overthrow of the entire capitalist world system:
" It is not the logically impossible "equalization of classes", but the historically necessary, superseding "abolition of classes" (abolition des classes), this true secret of the proletarian movement, which forms the great aim of the International Working Men's Association." (MEW, Volume 21, page 45, English edition).
There would not be a First International, if it would not be penetrated by Marxism, the revolutionary theory of the proletariat. No revolutionary movement - without revolutionary theory. No revolutionary movement without its revolutionary leadership, the revolutionary world party. These teachings of the First International are still important today. They will be also applied in regard of the Comintern (SH). There would not be a Comintern (SH), and no Stalinist-Hoxhaist World Movement, without the theoretical basis of the further development of Stalinism-Hoxhaism, thus without the development of revolutionary theory in the period of globalization in the late 20th and early 21st century.
Our first two Classics, Marx and Engels, were not only the founders of scientific communism, but also the practical leaders of the world communist movement, in which they verified their scientific ideas.
The organizational struggle of Marx and Engels for the First International was primarily a struggle for the proletarian party. The victory of Communism is impossible without communist organizations, particularly without its highest form, the proletarian International.
In the resolution on the political activities, Marx and Engels wrote:
Considering, that against this collective power of the propertied classes the working class cannot act, as a class, except by constituting itself into a political party, distinct from, and opposed to, all old parties formed by the propertied classes." (Resolution of the London Conference, MEW, Volume 22, page 427, English edition)
"We seek the abolition of Classes. What is the means of achieving it? The political domination of the proletariat." (Marx-Engels, September 21, 1871, MEW, Volume 22, page 417, English edition)
Marx was the real organizer, leader, the soul of the International. He wrote her programmatic documents and a large number of calls, declarations, resolutions, reports and other documents, which represent the most important stages of the glorious history of the First International. Marx was in fact the head of the General Council, the executive organ of the First International and the head quarter of the international labor movement. Marx was the leader of the international proletariat. He developed the ideological and organizational principles of a centrally guided world party. He united the various sections of the proletarians of all countries under the international banner of Marxism, under the banner of proletarian internationalism. The creation of a world proletarian party that unites the proletarians of all countries, is a basic condition for the emancipation of the workers. The First International was the highest form of the political and ideological organisation of the united international proletariat. The First International was the highest organisational expression of the world- revolutionary character of the only revolutionary class in the world, whose mission is to lead the proletarian revolution to victory and to establish the dictatorship of the international proletariat. The First International was the organisational form in which the working class expressed its independent, international and political leadership of the whole world society.
Marx based himself on the unequally developed different workers' movement in different countries and merged them into a single, great army of workers of Europe and America under the unified leadership of a centralized world organization in order to direct them to a single common goal - towards communism.
Engels underlined the special role of the Communist League that it played for the foundation of the First International:
"The present-day international workers’ movement is in substance a direct continuation of the German workers’ movement of that time, which was the first international workers’ movement of all time, and which brought forth many of those who took the leading role in the International Working Men’s Association. And the theoretical principles that the Communist League had inscribed on its banner in the Communist Manifesto of 1847 constitute today the strongest international bond of the entire proletarian movement of both Europe and America. After the centre of gravity had shifted from Paris to London, a new feature grew conspicuous: from being German, the League gradually became international. Like the open Association, so also the secret League soon took on a more international character; at first in a restricted sense, practically through the varied nationalities of its members, theoretically through the realization that any revolution to be victorious must be a European one. One did not go any further as yet; but the foundations were there. "
Engels wrote on Oktober 8, 1885:
"The international movement of the European and American proletariat has become so much strengthened that not merely its first narrow form — the secret League — but even its second, infinitely wider form — the open International Working Men’s Association — has become a fetter for it, and that the simple feeling of solidarity based on the understanding of the identity of class position suffices to create and to hold together one and the same great party of the proletariat among the workers of all countries and tongues. The doctrine which the League represented from 1847 to 1852, and which at that time could be treated by the wise philistines with a shrug of the shoulders as the hallucinations of utter madcaps, as the secret doctrine of a few scattered sectarians, has now innumerable adherents in all civilized countries of the world, among those condemned to the Siberian mines as much as among the gold diggers of California; and the founder of this doctrine, the most hated, most slandered man of his time, Karl Marx, was, when he died, the ever-sought-for and ever-willing counsellor of the proletariat of both the old and the new world. " (Frederick Engels: On The History of the Communist League 1885 Nov 12-26, 1885)
Before the First International so there was only the "League of Communists" which had clearly defined itself as an organization of proletarian internationalism.
Also, the founding of the German Social Democratic Workers Party (SDAP) was geared to the principles of Marxism in close co-operation with the guidance of Marx and Engels. At its foundation, on the 9th of August in 1869, the SDAP became a Section of the First International. So the First International played the decisive role for the creation of this first Marxist Party of Germany, which was simultaneously the very first Marxist party in the world. And also all the other Sections were established by the initiative of the First International - without exception. In the period before the establishment of the First International there was no single Marxist party in the world. The First International was - so to say - the "mother" of all the first Marxist parties.
In many respects, these circumstances are similar to those of the founding of the Comintern (SH) and its Sections. Their essential difference, however, is that there were no Marxist parties before the foundation of the First International, while, at the founding of the Comintern (SH), the Marxist-Leninist parties were degenerate as a result of neo-revisionism. The consequences were equal - namely both these world parties were forced to initiate the founding of their own Sections by themselves.
In both cases, the Sections were created by the proletarian International. And in both cases the founding of the proletarian International was not the result from the merger of parties in individual countries. Thus, the creation of Sections of the First International and the Comintern (SH) differs from that of the Second and Third Internationals.
The existence of the proletarian International does not at all end with the creation and strengthening of proletarian parties in each country. It is not at all the destination of proletarian parties to fill the shoes of the proletarian International. This revisionist thesis was the deathblow of the Comintern.
A proletarian International is as indispensable and irreplaceable as its own Sections. The proletarian International is and remains at the heart of proletarian internationalism and international communism.
It is a matter of fact that there was - now and then - the significant initiative of German comrades concerning the founding of the proletarian International. The reason is easily to be explained. This is historically rooted in the immortal, great, internationalist spirit of both the founders and leaders of the First International - Carl Marx and Frederick Engels.
Marx and Engels created and defended the democratic centralism of the First International in the fight against the anarchist Bakunin, who wanted to transform the First International in a "free federation of autonomous sections". Today, the splitting activities of the ICMLPO are determined by these similar federalist concepts. The ICMLPO rejects the re-establishment of the Comintern, and therefore, carries the enemy's position of poly-centrism instead of centralism. Just as Marx and Engels waged a victorious struggle against Bakunin, the Comintern (SH) will struggle against all branches of the neo-revisionists.
In its first stage of existence, the proletarian International is primarily confronted with the question: "Are you for or against the proletarian International?" In alignment with the motto "what is not allowed can not be", the question of the re-founding of the Comintern was opportunistically ignored by the adversaries of the Comintern for more than a half century.
In the course of its growing authority within the proletarian masses, the proletarian International, itself, will prove this question to become superfluous.
However, in its advanced stage, the proletarian International will be confronted with another question: "How can the proletarian International be eliminated, complementary from outside AND inside?"
The opportunistic "theory", that the founding of the Communist International must allegedly presuppose "advanced" Communist (mass) parties, is historically disproved by the foundation of both the First International and the Comintern (SH). It is well-known that both have NOT emerged from the merger of Marxist parties. This proves that this "theory" is only a tool in the hands of the bourgeoisie, to impede and prevent the re-founding of the Communist International for decades. Despite of all these bourgeois-revisionist "theorists", who try to deny or refute the indispensability of the Communist world party, the bourgeoisie could not prevent that the First International was re-established after its dissolution. The Second International emerged from the First International, the Comintern resulted from the Second International, and last not least, the Comintern (SH) arose from the Comintern. This historical development of the proletarian International was not, is not, and will never be stoppable.
It is noteworthy that Lenin defined the "Stuttgart Congress" (1907) of the Second International expressively as "the twelfth congress of the proletarian International ". We can therefore conclude that the names of all the previous Internationals can be basically summed up by the general term used by Lenin: "proletarian International". The world proletariat grows historically and so does the proletarian International. The different names of the Internationals are thus only expression of the special stages of the historical development of the one and only proletarian International. And that means nothing else than that all the previous Internationals form an inseparable unified whole. So if we defend the foundation of the First and Second International, and also the foundation of the Comintern and the Comintern (SH), then this means consequently that we defend the "proletarian International" as a whole - thus in all its historical stages of development - without excluding the one or other historical stage of the proletarian International. In this way, we Stalinist-Hoxhaists classify the First International and its founding on the scientific basis of the historical and dialectical materialism.
Many different anti-Marxist tendencies and organizations ( openly or hiddenly) swear by the First International, and they all pretend to fight "for" its Marxist goals. The Comintern (SH) struggles against all these Anti-Marxist currents and organizations on the basis of the 5 Classics of Marxism-Leninism. We Stalinist-Hoxhaists are of the opinion that we can not defend the foundation of the First International , if we would not simultaneously defend the foundation of the Second International , the foundation of the Comintern  and the foundation of the Comintern (SH ) . Those who ignore or deny the inseparable context of these decisive four years- 1864, 1889, 1919 and 2000 - will understand neither the dialectical nor the historical meaning of the First International.
Today, it is not at all self-evident that there is a Communist International (Stalinist-Hoxhaists) which celebrates the 150th anniversary of the First International. In the whole time, since the establishment of the First International, the world proletariat fought without the proletarian International for a period of nearly a 100 years ! If the proletarian International would have existed uninterruptedly for 150 years, then the world of today would not be the same. In retrospect, there is no more important lesson of the 150th anniversary of the First International than that of Lenin's presage: "Essentially the Communist International did not fall - lives on till this day and will also live on in future!”
The prospering of the Comintern (SH) confirms the truth of these words of Lenin, and they are our obligation and program at the same time.
What happened on the 100th anniversary in 1964 ? The revisionist criminals who dissolved the Comintern of Lenin and Stalin, 20 years ago, took the credit for the First International as its allegedly "legitimated heirs".
In fact, in their ceremonial documents the modern revisionists kept quiet about the glorious Comintern of Lenin and Stalin. They only mentioned the "Declarations of the Communist and Workers' Parties of 1957 and 1960" (in which the revisionist poison of the XX Congress of the CPSU was already incorporated), to "prove" their continuation of the ideas of the First International (see: speech of W. Ulbricht).
On their celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the First International these revisionist traitors (including the Maoists !) lost not a single word about the fact that the defense of the First International can be nothing else than the struggle for the re-establishment of the Communist International. Instead, in 1964, there was a power struggle between the two major revisionist parties - of the Soviet Union and China - who were both in agreement a) to prevent the re-establishment of the International, b) to split and liquidate the world communist movement and c) to extinguish the fire of the socialist world revolution.
In the fight against this betrayal of modern revisionism, new Marxist-Leninist parties were founded under the leadership of comrade Enver Hoxha and the Party of Labour of Albania. But the Marxist-Leninist world movement was still not able to re-establish the foundation of the Comintern. This happened with the turn of the century - by the founding of the Comintern (SH) - thus at a time, when the Marxist-Leninist world movement was almost completely liquidated after the collapse of the last socialist country - of Albania.
The First International was the first organization of the international proletariat which united the labor movement with scientific socialism; which combined the struggle for direct daily interests with the struggle for the communist ultimate goals. With the First International, the basic principles of the "Communist Manifesto" were implemented, namely a) to struggle in the current movement also for the future of the movement , and b) to struggle primarily for the overall interests of the entire world proletariat.
However, the First International did never confuse the achievement of the independence of the working class with its sectarian isolation from all other progressive movements outside the labor movement. One of the most important knowledges of Marx and Engels was the new form of class struggle that is fundamentally different from all previous forms of class struggle: "that the present-day oppressed class the proletariat, cannot achieve its emancipation without at the same time emancipating society as a whole from division into classes and, therefore, from class struggles. And Communism now no longer meant the concoction, by means of the imagination, of an ideal society as perfect as possible, but insight into the nature, the conditions and the consequent general aims of the struggle waged by the proletariat." (Frederick Engels: On The History of the Communist League 1885 Nov 12-26, 1885)
Marx and Engels, who fought for the support of any progressive, democratic movement all over the world, taught the proletariat and its pioneers in the First International, to take the position of a truly internationalist solidarity with the liberation struggle of the oppressed peoples. The First International was in the forefront of the liberation of the oppressed peoples. Marx and Engels created the principle of proletarian internationalism - namely to connect the own struggle of proletarian emancipation with the struggle of emancipation of the oppressed peoples.
Lenin proved to be the best follower of the First International when he taught "that there is no other way of combating national hatred than by organising and uniting the oppressed class for a struggle against the oppressor class in each separate country, than by uniting such national working-class army to fight international capital." (Lenin, Collected Works, Volume 1, page 156, English edition)
Marx and Engels condemned the narrow-minded nationalism, and simultaneously they taught that the national question can only be solved by the internationalist struggle of the proletariat. They called on the workers in the oppressor countries, to support the liberation struggle of the oppressed peoples, because the economic power of the bourgeoisie is based - to a great extent - on the exploitation of the colonies: "Any people that oppresses another people forges its own chains." – (Marx, MEW, Volume 21, page 89, English edition).
Marx created the "Provisional Rules of the Working Men's international Association" in which he emphasized:
„That the emancipation of labour is neither a local nor a national, but a social problem, embracing all countries in which modern society exists, and depending for its solution on the concurrence, practical and theoretical, of the most advanced
countries“.(MEW, Volume 20, page 14, English edition)
Unification of the proletarians of all countries for the overthrow of world capitalism, for the international conquest of workers' power, for the construction of a socialist world with the final aim of creating a classless society - this was already manifested in the founding documents of the First International - thus according to the "Communist Manifesto" in which the world-historical mission of the working class was defined for the first time.
And in his last speech, on the Hague Congress, Carl Marx proclaimed:
"Let us bear in mind this fundamental principle of the International: solidarity! It is by establishing this life-giving principle on a reliable base among all the workers in all countries that we shall achieve the great aim which we pursue. The revolution must display solidarity, and we find a great example of this in the Paris Commune, which fell because there did not appear in all the centres, in Berlin, Madrid, etc., a great revolutionary movement corresponding to this supreme uprising of the Paris proletariat.
For my part I will persist in my task and will constantly work to establish among the workers this solidarity which will bear fruit for the future. No, I am not withdrawing from the International, and the rest of my life will be devoted, like my efforts in the past, to the triumph of the social ideas which one day, be sure of it, will bring about the universal rule of the proletariat." (MEW, Volume 23, page 256, English edition).
Dear Carl Marx, be sure that the Comintern (SH) is sure of it !!!
Since the founding of the Comintern (SH) in 2000, we carry forward the flag of the inexorable triumph of world domination of the proletariat in all countries of the world. For this aim, Carl Marx and Frederick Engels fought all their life long, especially in the time of the glorious First International.
As the only organisation in the world, the Comintern (SH) preserves today the revolutionary heritage of the First International and fights for the realization of its goals. The triumph of the world domination of the proletariat is based on the correct implementation of the teachings of Marxism-Leninism-Stalinism-Hoxhaism!
On occasion of the 150th anniversary the Comintern (SH) publishes today numerous documents on/of the First International in various languages of the world.
The International will never perish and is invisible !
Long live the 150th anniversary of the foundation of the First International !
Long live Marx und Engels – the founders and leaders of the First International !
Long live the socialist world revolution and the establishment of the dictatorship of the world proletariat !
Long live world socialism and world communism !
Long live the 5 Classics of Marxism-Leninism:
Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin and Enver Hoxha !
Vorward with the Comintern (SH) !
Wilhelm Eichhoff 1869
The International Workingmen’s Association
Its Establishment, Organisation, Political and Social Activity, and Growth
Marx-Engels-Lenin Institute Moscow
September - November 1864
A Documentary Record
Karl Marx and the
(International Workingmen’s Association)
When the International was formed in September 1864, Marx was “a relatively obscure refugee journalist,” Saul Padover notes in the introduction to a volume of select works written by Marx for the International:
“Exiled from his native Germany, thrown out of Belgium, and expelled from France, Marx found refuge in the British capital in 1849. In the 15 years before the founding of the International, Marx eked out a living from journalism – saved from actual starvation by Frederick Engels, who was in the textile business in Manchester – and spent most of his time writing, reading, and researching (in the British Museum). After the traumatic defeat of the revolutions of 1848-49 in Europe, he became for a time politically inactive.
“In London, Marx’s main contacts were with other Europeans, particularly German and French radicals and refugees, with many of whom he had intermittent squabbles and disagreements. While showing deep interest in British politics, institutions, and movements – notably the history of Chartism, which was not without influence on his own political thinking – he kept himself, or was kept, aloof from English activists, including trade unionists. With few exceptions, one of them being the Chartist leader and editor Ernest Charles Jones, Marx had no close connection with English radicals or laborites, and vice versa. His led the politically isolated life of an unassimilated continental refugee. The International was to change all this.
“It is still not entirely clear why Marx was invited to what turned out to be a historic meeting at St. Martin’s Hall. Until about a week before the meeting, on September 28, he apparently knew nothing about any preparations for it. Then he was told about it by Victor Le Lubez, a 30-year-old French radical republican living in London, who invited him to come as a representtive of German workers. Marx accepted and proposed that he be joined by Johann Georg Eccarius, a tailor living in London, as another German representative. As it turned out, Marx and Eccarius were to become the two mainstays of the International from its inception to its end.
“The meeting was jammed with a large number of assorted radicals. There were English Owenties and Chartists, French Proudhonists and Blanquists, Irish nationalists, Polish patriots, Italian Mazzinists, and German Socialists. It was an assortment united not by a commonly shared ideology or even by genuine internationalism, but by an accumulated burden of variated grievances crying for an outlet. The English were against special privilege, the French against Bonapartism, the Irish against the British, the Poles against Russia [Poland was occupied by Russia in 1795], the Italians against Austria, and the Germans against capitalism. There was no necessary or integral interconnection among them – except what Marx later tried to provide in the organizaton that followed the meeting. Under the chairmanship of Edward Spencer Beesly, an English Positivist historian and professor at London University, radical oratory was given free rein. Marx himself did not speak. He was, as he wrote later, a ‘silent figure on the platform.’
“The meeting voted unanimously to appoint a provisional committee to work out a program and membership rules for the proposed international organizaton. Marx was appointed a member of the committee, which met a week later and, being large and unweildy, agreed on a small subcommittee to do the actual work. Marx became a member of this crucial subcommittee. The only other German on it was “my old friend, the tailor Eccarius", as Marx wrote to a communist friend in Solingen. The subcommittee met in Marx’s house, and so powerful was his intellectual ascendency and certainty of purpose – the In Augural Address – and the rules – Provisional Statutes – of the new organization. Henceforth Marx was to remain its predominant spirit and the indomitable personality that held the disparate International Association together for eight difficult and often stormy years, until it was shattered by bitter internal dissensions.
“In the International, Marx saw a great historic opportunity, and seized it. Indeed, it is questionable whether the organization would have survived, or would have had any meaning, without him. His steely will and impassioned commitment to the idea of the revolutionary role of the world proletariat prevented the International from passing into the same oblivion as had other dreams of squabbly radicals, confused in their philosophy and at cross-purposes in their aims.”
On the First International
The International Workingmen’s Association
1864 - 1876