On occasion of Lenin's birthday and the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Comintern we publish the following article:

 

What lessons do we Stalinists-Hoxhaists draw from Lenin's struggle against the opportunism that he led in the Comintern?

[ Handbook against Opportunism ]

author: Wolfgang Eggers - April 22, 2019

 

 

Introduction

The lessons of the Leninist struggle against opportunism in the Comintern help us comrades of the Comintern (SH) to recognize today's intentions of the opportunists inside and outside of our world party, and not only to recognize how and in which direction the opportunists act against us. But also how and in which direction they will act against the Comintern (SH) in future.

If we master Lenin's lessons on opportunism we will be able to protect the working-class and its world party against opportunist influences. And the other way round - if we do not master Lenin's theory on the struggle against opportunism, we would leave the world proletariat in the lurch, because they need our help to get rid of all kind of opportunistic influences on its march towards the world socialist revolution.
In the Comintern, after right-opportunism was defeated in the course of the victorious October Revolution, opportunism began with "left-wing" exaggerations and Trotskyist deviations (="left" mask of rightist opportunism). It went on with the hostile block of right and "left" opportunists and finally ended in long-lasting attack of right-wing opportunism. Capitulating in the struggle against increasing pressure of revisionist influence, the Comintern was thus doomed to die. (This development of opportunism in the Comintern - to certain degree - coincides historically and logically with that in the Soviet Union).
We do not want to repeat this story of opportunism in the Comintern.
That's why in our fight against neo-revisionism today we have to be careful not to allow "left-wing" deviations. And while combating our "left-wing" rookie mistakes, we must not give the right-wing opportunism any chance to give us its alleged "support" in this fight against "leftism" whose organizational nature is sectarianism.
Conversely, in the main fight against right-wing opportunism, we must never use "leftist" opportunist means, because these are basically only means which would bring the Comintern (SH) all the easier into the hands of the right-wing opportunists.
We cannot fight opportunism with treacherous means of opportunism, but only by means of Stalinism-Hoxhaism as the only genuine proletarian ideology of today.


Never to give our struggle against opportunism out of our own strong Bolshevik hands - that is the most important Leninist-Stalinist lesson of the struggle against international opportunism within the Comintern.

The 5 classics of Marxism-Leninism are the leaders of the struggle against international opportunism. The Comintern (SH) is guided by their teachings because this is the only guarantee of our invincible struggle against opportunism.

 

I

Lenin's break with the Second International - a prerequisite for the founding of the Comintern

The break with the neo-revisionists - prerequisite for the founding of the Comintern (SH)

 

"The mark of the true communism is a brake with opportunism"

(Lenin,Volume 32, page 464)

 

The demand for the founding of the Comintern, which was to replace the Second International, was taken up in 1917 by Lenin in his "April Theses" under Item 10, whereupon the Central Committee of the Bolsheviks decided
at the party conference on April 29, 1917 :

"It is the task of our party to take the initiative of creating a third international in a country where the revolution began earlier than in other countries."

Lenin's titanic struggle against opportunism in the Comintern began on the first day of its founding and ended only with his last breath in 1924.

As you know, Lenin did not begin in the Cominternwith his fight against international opportunism . His decisive break with the opportunism of the Second International was, already before, of world-historical importance - and in particular for the founding of the Comintern.

It was clear that this fight against the ideological influence of the Second- and the "Two-and-a-Half"-International could not have come to an end simply by founding the Comintern. This struggle ran like a thread through the whole history of the Comintern. And when the Comintern stopped fighting the influence of opportunism, this was one of the main reasons that led unavoidable to its dissolution.
Later on, it was Dimitrov who reduced in an inadmissible way the fight against socialdemocracy to its "rightist" wing, and this through an alliance (!) with the "left" wing of the socialdemocrats.
In contrast to Dimitrov, Lenin taught that one cannot fight the socialdemocracy if one unifies with its "leftist" wing! And all the modern revisionists later did not follow the Leninist line but the opportunist line of Dimitrov - namely without exception. This lesson of Lenin means, today, that one cannot fight against opportunism in unity with the neo-revisionists.

Under the pressure of the onset of world revolution, some leaders of the Second and the "Two-and-a-Half"-International payed lips service in favour of the Comintern in order to deceive and betray the revolutionary mass movement :

"Such a state of affairs is absolutely intolerable, because it leads to downright corruption of the masses, detracts from the Third International's prestige, and threatens a repetition of the same acts of treachery." (Lenin, Volume 31, page 184-185)

At the founding congress, the opportunists did not dare to defend openly the position of the Second and the "Two-and-a-Half" International. Therefore, they agreed with the resolutions of the First World Congress for tactical reasons. For Lenin, however, the danger from the very beginning was that the opportunist ideology of the Second International would spread throughout the Comintern, especially in its veiled form of the "revolutionary" phraseology.

Breaking with the opportunism of the Second and "Two-and-a-Half" Internationals in words, however in deeds, carrying opportunism into the Comintern, - that was the phenomenology of the opportunists within the Comintern.

And it was Lenin who unmasked the treachery of the opportunists. In order to be able to purify the Comintern from these bourgeois, petty-bourgeois influences, Lenin's many years of experience in his combined struggle against international and Russian opportunism were of great value for the Comintern.

The Second World Congress had adopted Lenin's 21 Conditions of Admission of membership, which corresponded to the historical conditions of the break with the betrayal of the Second and "Two-and-a-Half" International. Everyone wanted to become a member of the Third International, directly after the victorious October Revolution:

"left-wing" sectarians, anarchists and trade-unionist groups, as well as centrist elements, who did not intend to throw overboard their old ballast of the Second International. More or less they all were far away from following Leninism as the only correct ideology and politics of the Bolshevik World Party and the communist world movement. It was as Lenin put it in his 21 conditions for admission:

"The Communist International is becoming a fashion, so to speak."
"Under certain circumstances, the Communist International may run the risk of being watered down by fickle groups that persue a policy of halfhearted measures and who have not yet freed themselves from the ideology of the Second International."

The purpose of Lenin's 21 conditions for admission was, firstly, to protect the Comintern from the intrusion of anti-proletarian elements whose aim was to disintegrate the Comintern from within, to dissuade it from the path of the world socialist revolution, to adapt the Comintern to bourgeois ideology, to transforming it into a bourgeois international and thus rendering unusable the most important organizational instrument of the world proletariat.

And second, the purpose of the 21 admission criteria was to oblige all members of the Comintern to wage a stubborn Leninist struggle against opportunism, which of course is not limitted in educating Leninism. It is not enough just to condemn the opportunists and explain the break with them. You have to throw them out! This is what Lenin and the Bolsheviks have enforced not only in their own party, but within the Comintern as well as within each of its Sections.

If we wish to learn from the struggle of Lenin against opportunism within the Comintern, then the study of Lenin's entire struggle (from the very beginning) against opportunism is indispensable. However, all this can not be subject of this article which deals with Lenin's struggle against opportunism within the Comintern.

Who can better summarize this fight of Lenin - shortly before the founding of the Comintern - than comrade Stalin. We ask for your understanding, if we start here with a long quotation from Stalin's "History of the CPSU (B)" (Short Course):

(If you want to do without this summary, please skip this long quote)

The Second International ceased to exist. Actually it broke up into separate social-chauvinist parties which warred against each other.

    The leaders of the Socialist parties betrayed the proletariat and adopted the position of social-chauvinism and defence of the imperialist bourgeoisie. They helped the imperialist governments to hoodwink the working class and to poison it with the venom of nationalism. Using the defence of the fatherland as a plea, these social-traitors began to incite the German workers against the French workers, and the British and French workers against the German workers. Only an insignificant minority of the Second International kept to the internationalist position and went against the current; true, they did not do so confidently and definitely enough, but go against the current they did.

    Only the Bolshevik Party immediately and unhesitatingly raised the banner of determined struggle against the imperialist war. In the theses on the war that Lenin wrote in the autumn of 1914, he pointed out that the fall of the Second International was not accidental. The Second International had been ruined by the opportunists, against whom the foremost representatives of the revolutionary proletariat had long been warning.

    The parties of the Second International had already been infected by opportunism before the war. The opportunists had openly preached renunciation of the revolutionary struggle; they had preached the theory of the "peaceful growing of capitalism into Socialism." The Second International did not want to combat opportunism; it wanted to live in peace with opportunism, and allowed it to gain a firm hold. Pursuing a conciliatory policy towards opportunism, the Second International itself became opportunist.

    The imperialist bourgeoisie systematically bribed the upper stratum of skilled workers, the so-called labour aristocracy, by means of higher wages and other sops, using for this purpose part of the profits it derived from the colonies, from the exploitation of backward countries. This section of workers had produced quite a number of trade union and co-operative leaders, members of municipal and parliamentary bodies, journalists and functionaries of Social-Democratic organizations. When the war broke out, these people, fearing to lose their positions, became foes of revolution and most zealous defenders of their own bourgeoisies, of their own imperialist governments.

    The opportunists became social-chauvinists.

    The social-chauvinists, the Russian Mensheviks and Socialist-Revolutionaries among their number, preached class peace between the workers and the bourgeoisie at home and war on other nations abroad. They deceived the masses by concealing from them who was really responsible for the war and declaring that the bourgeoisie of their particular country was not to blame. Many social-chauvinists became ministers of the imperialist governments of their countries.

    No less dangerous to the cause of the proletariat were the covert social-chauvinists, the so-called Centrists. The Centrists -- Kautsky, Trotsky, Martov and others -- justified and defended the avowed social chauvinists, thus joining the social-chauvinists in betraying the proletariat; they masked their treachery by "Leftist" talk about combating the war, talk designed to deceive the working class. As a matter of fact, the Centrists supported the war, for their proposal not to vote against war credits, but merely to abstain when a vote on the credits was being taken, meant supporting the war. Like the social-chauvinists, they demanded the renunciation of the class struggle during the war so as not to hamper their particular imperialist government in waging the war. The Centrist Trotsky opposed Lenin and the Bolshevik Party on all the important questions of the war and Socialism.

    From the very outbreak of the war Lenin began to muster forces for the creation of a new International, the Third International. In the manifesto against the war it issued in November 1914, the Central Committee of the Bolshevik Party already called for the formation of the Third International in place of the Second International which had suffered disgraceful bankruptcy. (underlined by the Comintern).

    In February 1915, a conference of Socialists of the Entente countries was held in London. Comrade Litvinov, on Lenin's instructions, spoke at this conference demanding that the Socialists (Vandervelde, Sembat and Guesde) should resign from the bourgeois government of Belgium and France, completely break with the imperialists and refuse to collaborate with them. He demanded that all Socialists should wage a determined struggle against their imperialist governments and condemn the voting of war credits. But no voice in support of Litvinov was raised at this conference.

    At the beginning of September 1915 the first conference of internationalists was held in Zimmerwald. Lenin called this conference the "first step" in the development of an international movement against the war. At this conference Lenin formed the Zimmerwald Left group. But within the Zimmerwald Left group only the Bolshevik Party, headed by Lenin, took a correct and thoroughly consistent stand against the war. The Zimmerwald Left group published a magazine in German called the Vorbote (Herald ), to which Lenin contributed articles.

    In 1916 the internationalists succeeded in convening a second conference in the Swiss village of Kienthal. It is known as the Second Zimmerwald Conference. By this time groups of internationalists had been formed in nearly every country and the cleavage between the internationalist elements and the social-chauvinists had become more sharply defined. But the most important thing was that by this time the masses themselves had shifted to the Left under the influence of the war and its attendant distress. The manifesto drawn up by the Kienthal Conference was the result of an agreement between various conflicting groups; it was an advance on the Zimmerwald Manifesto.

    But like the Zimmerwald Conference, the Kienthal Conference did not accept the basic principles of the Bolshevik policy, namely, the conversion of the imperialist war into a civil war, the defeat of one's own imperialist government in the war, and the formation of the Third International. Nevertheless, the Kienthal Conference helped to crystallize the internationalist elements of whom the Communist Third International was subsequently formed. (Chapter VI , 3)


II
The dialectic between Lenin's struggle against opportunism in the Bolshevik Party and in the Comintern

 

 

The Comintern (SH) understands Lenin's national and international struggle against opportunism dialectically.

Lenin was not only the founder of the Comintern, but also the undisputed master of the struggle against opportunism, just as Marx was the undisputed master of truggle against opportunism in the First, and Engels was that undisputed master of the Second International.

The lessons of the Classics of Marxism-Leninism about the struggle against opportunism cannot be considered as separated from each other, as incoherent and cannot be played off against each other.

"I am speaking of international significance in the narrowest sense of the word, taking international significance to mean the international validity or the historical inevitability of a repetition, on an international scale, of what has taken place in our country. It must be admitted that certain fundamental features of our revolution do possess that significance". (Lenin, Volume 31, page 21).

In founding and developing the Comintern, Lenin pursued the ingenious organization plan of the world proletarian struggle for the transition from the democratic-bourgeois revolution to the world socialist revolution, basing himself on Russia's experiences. But he did not force dogmatically the particular Russian experiences upon the international communist movement. In order to make them applicable to all he modified the Russian experiences by their theoretical generalization.

Lenin said that the Bolsheviks' struggle against opportunism in Russia was a struggle connected with great sacrifices. Subsequently sacrifices are also inevitably in all the other countries of the world. But to cope with this struggle is no longer a matter of a sole country, isolated from the world, as this was the case with the Bolsheviks, but now a common matter of Sections who affiliated in the Comintern.

The victorious transformation of the bourgeois-democratic into the socialist revolution was also a victory over the opportunists who sabotaged this transformation in Russia in various ways. It must be emphasized from our dialectical view that Russian opportunism has always been supported by international opportunism (and continues to be supported to this day!).

Lenin teaches that one can only fight opportunism in one's own country victoriously if one cuts through all its thousandfold ties to international opportunism. And conversely, one can not defeat international opportunism without defeating its influence in every country of the world.

From this we derive the correct understanding of Lenin's dialectic of the struggle against opportunism, both in the Bolshevik Party and the Comintern (and their individual sections). This is the dialectical way how we must understand and learn from today's international significance of the unavoidable historical repetition of Lenin's struggle against opportunism within the Comintern ( not dogmatically but both dialectically and historically !)


The tactic of Bolshevism in the fight against opportunism is still an invincible tactic for all - last not least also for the Comintern (SH)!

The Comintern (SH) is fighting for the transition from the first stage of the world revolution to the second stage, the globalized stage of the world revolution. It is clear that the opportunists today are trying to combat this transition from the first to the second stage of the world socialist revolution by means of their neo-revisionism. The opportunists will fail in this attempt, however, if the Comintern (SH) relies on the teachings of Lenin (modified according to today's conditions of globalization), which he has successfully used in the fight against opportunism in the Comintern.


Lenin's struggle against opportunism within the Bolshevik party is inseparable from his struggle against opportunism within the Comintern. How solidly and patiently Lenin helped the young communist parties to overcome opportunist mistakes is testimony to his great spirit of proletarian internationalism.

Expression of Lenin's high internationalist spirit of Lenin is his devotion to spare the world proletariat the painful experiences with opportunism and errors that the Russian proletariat had to undergo previously.

How much the opportunism actually had cost us dear, can be measured by the liquidation of the Comintern in 1943, and in addition, during the decades of international class struggle - without Comintern - until the end of the twentieth century.

Lenin's struggle against opportunism within the Bolshevik Party served as yardstick and lever for his struggle against opportunism in the Comintern. That is what makes up the whole peculiarity of his ideological struggle against international opportunism at the time of the Comintern.

When international Marxism had not yet been betrayed by the revisionists, Lenin applied it in the struggle against the Russian revisionists. Between the defeat of the revolution of 1905 and the victory of the October Revolution, but at the latest with the founding of the Comintern, Leninism became the sharpest weapon in the struggle against international opportunism. From the Marxist world movement emerged the Marxist-Leninist world movement, socialism in "one" country became the center of the struggle against international opportunism.

Lenin's experience of purifying the Bolshevik Party from opportunist elements was of fundamental significance to the cleansing of the Comintern from the relicts of the Second and "Two-and-a-Half" Internationals, and thus to the bolshevization of the Comintern. Under the leadership of Lenin, for example, the Bolshevik Party was purged by about 99% of all Mensheviks who, after 1918, had joined the Bolshevik party.

Once the opportunists were defeated in the CPR (B), they could then be beaten all the easier and more thoroughly in the Comintern.

The bolshevik party of Lenin and Stalin proved to be the real ideological leader of the struggle against the opportunists in the Comintern. And every flaw and weakness of the Bolshevik Party inevitably had an immediate negative impact on the Comintern. And consequently, any strengthening of the opportunists in the Soviet Union inevitably led to a strengthening of opportunists throughout the world.

In principle, this applied, of course, in the reverse case. The opportunists had also closely linked their covered fight against the Bolshevik party with their struggle against the Comintern. We recall the treachery of Comintern leaders Zinoviev, Bukharin, and other Comintern leaders who came from within the ranks of the Bolshevik party which were finally replaced by Dimitrov, whose reputation was therefore highly praised by the bourgeoisie as a "non-Russian" leader of the Comintern (non-Russian= label of a weighty ""international title" because measured as something being "above" the influence of the Soviet Union) .

The opportunists directed their attacks on the revolutionary world center not only from the inner center, but also from the periphery, especially from those sections where it was best for them to smuggle their agents into the Comintern, and finally into the leadership of the Comintern.

 

Stalinism-Hoxhaism teaches that the Soviet Union was not only the basis and lever of world revolution in general, but also the basis and lever of the fight against international opportunism - especially within the Comintern.

What does that mean ?

Without victory over opportunism neither the world socialist revolution nor the dictatorship of the world proletariat can not be victorious.

It is true that if the main enemy has to be overthrown in one's own country, this necessarily includes the overthrow of one's "own" opportunists, because without the victory over opportunism in one's "own" country there can be no global victory over the world bourgeoisie.

Lenin teaches that one has to take into account national peculiarities in the fight against opportunism in order to be able to solve this task on a global scale:

"It is now essential that Communists of every country should quite consciously take into account both the fundamental objectives of the struggle against opportunism and “Left” doctrinairism, and the concrete features which this struggle assumes and must inevitably assume in each country, in conformity with the specific character of its economics, politics, culture, and national composition (...), its colonies, religious divisions, and so on and so forth. Dissatisfaction with the Second International is felt everywhere and is spreading and growing, both because of its opportunism and because of its inability or incapacity to create a really centralised and really leading centre capable of directing the international tactics of the revolutionary proletariat in its struggle for a world Soviet republic. It should be clearly realised that such a leading centre can never be built up on stereotyped, mechanically equated, and identical tactical rules of struggle. As long as national and state distinctions exist among peoples and countries—and these will continue to exist for a very long time to come, even after the dictatorship of the proletariat has been established on a world-wide scale—the unity of the international tactics of the communist working-class movement in all countries demands, not the elimination of variety or the suppression of national distinctions (which is a pipe dream at present), but an application of the fundamental principles of communism (Soviet power and the dictatorship of the proletariat), which will correctly modify these principles in certain particulars, correctly adapt and apply them to national and national-state distinctions. To seek out, investigate, predict, and grasp that which is nationally specific and nationally distinctive, in the concrete manner in which each country should tackle a single international task: victory over opportunism and Left doctrinairism within the working-class movement; the overthrow of the bourgeoisie; the establishment of a Soviet republic and a proletarian dictatorship—such is the basic task in the historical period that all the advanced countries (and not they alone) are going through."

(Lenin, Volume 31, pages 91-92)

As far as the fight against opportunism and "Left" doctrinairism is concerned, Lenin approached this task in a historically differentiated way:

As the first historical task, the masses must free themselves from the influence of opportunism in order to find and pursue the path of world revolution.

As the next historical task, Lenin described the overcoming of influence of "Left" doctrinairism in the masses , in order to secure the victory of the world revolution. If the first historical task is not solved, the second historical task can not be fulfilled either.

The guiding principle of the Stalinist-Hoxhaist struggle against opportunism is to strengthen the central role of the Comintern (SH), namely to centralize and unify this struggle in all countries of the world, to lead the entire world proletariat and the broad masses to victory against opportunism. Otherwise the victory over opportunism can not be won on a world scale, nor can its inevitability be eliminated. Fighting opportunism is a centrally organized struggle of the world proletariat and its world party - supported by the Sections and the proletariat in all countries of the world without exception.

Our slogan is:

Proletarians of all countries - unite in the fight against opportunism!

World proletariat - unite all countries in the fight against opportunism!

Through the Comintern, Lenin's fight against opportunism spread throughout the world, effectively empowering and encouraging all Communist parties in the fight against opportunism in their own country which led to purifying themselves from opportunist leaders.

This principle is also successfully applied today by the Sections of the Comintern (SH), with which they implement the fight of the Comintern (SH) against international opportunism concretely in their own country, in order to strengthen their Bolshevik position against domestic opportunism.

Lenin led the fight against opportunism in dialectical unity, ie simultaneously under the international conditions of the dictatorship of the world bourgeoisie and under the special conditions of the dictatorship of the proletariat in the Soviet Union. Lenin smashed the network of opportunists that had been installed between the outer opportunists in power (in the world of capitalism) and the inner opportunists in opposition (in the socialisst county).

The so-called "Opposition" in the Bolshevik Party was nothing but the extended arm of the agency of the world bourgeoisie in the Soviet Union. And the opportunists in the Comintern, they spread opportunism from their central position throughout the communist world movement. This way, they directly exerted harmful influence on every single Section of the Comintern.

 

* * *
In the Comintern Lenin fought against opportunism, namely on the basis of the dictatorship of the proletariat, the powerful land of socialism.

 

"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." (Lenin: "The Third International and Its Place in History", 15 April, 1919)

The dictatorship of the proletariat is the most powerful weapon in the fight against international opportunism.

Under the dictatorship of the proletariat, the Comintern was externally protected from attacks by the international counter-revolution and was able to legally carry out its world-revolutionary activities (of course illegally outside the Soviet Union). Such a dictatorship of the proletariat is unfortunately not available to the Comintern (SH) anywhere in the world today. Also today we are not financially supported by any dictatorship of the proletariat. Such a powerful apparatus as the Comintern had legally built up in Moscow could not have been built up anywhere in the world under the illegal conditions of the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie. These particular conditions of the Comintern must not be disregarded in comparison with the present conditions of the construction of the Comintern (SH) and its struggle against international opportunism.

Decisive in the fight against the opportunists, these are the people, these were the workers of the Soviet Union who had been steeled for decades. Of course, Soviet workers equipped with political power purified representatives of the labor aristocracy quite differently than where the capitalists are in power and where a much more influential labor aristocracy exists. So it was a great advantage for the Comintern to be able to rely not only on Lenin but also on the Soviet workers in their fight against opportunism.

Anyone can imagine the mighty power of the struggle we will have against opportunism in the era of world socialism, under the dictatorship of the world proletariat!

The Russian proletariat was the most advanced detachment of the world proletariat, and thus the most advanced working class in the fight against opportunism, last not least in the Comintern.

Although today the Comintern (SH) must continue the fight against international opportunism without all these favorable conditions, but based on the teachings of the 5 classics of Marxism-Leninism, we already have combated one and another ideological influence of international opportunism , thus also under far more disadvantageous conditions.

The doctrine of Lenin that imperialism can not be defeated without defeat of opportunism remains as topical as it is indispensable in the struggle against neo-revisionism. Lenin's anti-revisionist doctrines are defended today by tearing out the roots of neo-revisionism.

Neo-revisionism is an international evil, but precisely because it is an international evil, its defeat in each country will inevitably lead to defeat in other countries, and that will finally cause all international neo-revisionism to collapse.

 

* * *

The international meaning of the struggle of the Bolshevik Party against opportunism, immediately after the founding of the Comintern.

 

Immediately after the founding of the Comintern, the 8th Party Congress of the CPR (B) took place, which was of extraordinary importance for the further development of the Comintern. Lenin was victorious there against the "Opposition", for example in the question of the revision of the old party program.

Lenin thwarted Bukharin's anti-Bolshevik attempts to jettison the foundations of the old party program, specially the program point about the genesis of capitalism. Lenin said at the 8th Party Congress:

"To be international, our programme must take into account the class factors which are characteristic of the economy of all countries. (...) A programme which says nothing about the fundamentals of commodity economy and capitalism will not be a Marxist international programme. (...) We value communism only when it is based on economic facts."

(Lenin, Volume 29, (4) Speech Closing The Debate On The Party Programme - March 19, 1919)

For Lenin, the new program of the Bolshevik Party was not a national but a world-scale program of socialist revolution, which, however, had to confine itself to what is in the world and not what would serve narrow national interests. Lenin teaches:

Only an internationalist program is a program against international opportunism.

Lenin fought both in his own party and in the Comintern such opportunists who whitewashed their Russian great-power chauvinism with red paint,
and Lenin quotes Engels:

"One thing alone is certain: the victorious proletariat can force no blessings of any kind upon any foreign nation without undermining its own victory by so doing."

(Engels' letter to Karl Kautsky from September 12, 1882)

In Lenin's time world imperialism prevailed without capitalism had been already developed in most countries of the world. This of course no longer applies under the current conditions of globalization. With the globalization of capitalism, opportunism has become globalized, too.

Following the teachings of Lenin in the struggle against Bukharin, the Comintern (SH) does not delete in its world program the essence of capitalism, its emergence from commodity society, for with the overthrow of world imperialism, those roots of capitalism do not disappear automatically. From the roots of capitalism imperialism inevitably emerges again and again. And this is also valid for the unavoidable formation of international opportunism out of its national roots.

In short:

It is not enough merely to smash the world imperialist spearhead of capitalism, to attack only the most reactionary elements of international finance capital ! This was the case in the revisionist definition of fascism by Dimitrov at the Seventh World Congress of the Comintern, and from which the revisionist slogan was derived later on: "Fight Monopolism!" - All this is just cosmetics while capitalism is left untouched and thus intact for producing new monopolism again and again).

Globalized opportunism will not be defeated as long as opportunism will not be defeated in every country, from where it has taken its development into international opportunism and always will redevelop from there.

One can not eliminate the capitalist iceberg completely if you break off only the imperialist tip that sticks out of the water. Then the buoyancy of the water does not bring "socialism", but only a new tip of the capitalist iceberg to the water surface.

And so it is with the anti-communist iceberg. The opportunism that remains invisible beneath the surface of the water, inevitably moves up to surface always after we have destroyed the tip of the anti-communist iceberg.

Opportunism will be utterly abolished, not beforer capitalism is completely eliminated, for which a whole epoch of the world dictatorship of the proletariat is necessary, in which the struggle against opportunism must be conducted all the more bitterly. Why this ? This is because the danger of the restoration of capitalism can not be separated from the restoration of the power of the opportunists.

All at once one can not break the resistance of the world bourgeoisie, nor the resistance of her opportunistic lackeys. Lenin teaches:

"The abolition of classes is the work of a protracted, severe, stubborn class struggle, which, after the overthrow of the power of capital, after the destruction of the bourgeois state, after the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat, does not disappear (it only will change its forms) and will become in many respect even more bitter."

The nature of "leftist" opportunism is to want to shorten and skip this protracted, heavy, stubborn class struggle (in truth to shun the struggle of the masses) - but all this hidden behind "revolutionary" phraseology.

The nature of right-wing opportunism is to deny this protracted, severe, stubborn class struggle, to declare it superfluous and harmful, and instead to reconcile the proletariat with the bourgeoisie in order to "peacefully move to socialism."


The nature of centrism is to waver in the question of the class struggle. The centrists recognize it theoretically, but sabotage it in practice. And for this, the centrist opportunists are trying to form a bloc of the right and "left" opportunists as a brake of the revolutionary militantness of the Comintern by transforming the Comintern from a fighting instrument into a discussion club. They waver, to and fro, between "left" and right opportunism, between bourgeois ideology and proletarian ideology, between the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie and the dictatorship of the proletariat, between reform and revolution, etc. For centrists, the Bolshevik line of the Comintern was only a comfortable sort of an intermediate step for changing their opportunist position, thus for stepping over from the right opportunism to the "left" opportunism (respectively vice versa).

Lenin emphasized in his speech at the Third Congress of the Comintern:

Our first step was to create a real Communist Party so as to know whom we were talking to and whom we could fully trust. The slogan of the First and Second congresses was “Down with the Centrists!” We cannot hope to master even the ABC of communism, unless all along the line and throughout the world we make short shrift of the Centrists and semi-Centrists, whom in Russia we call Mensheviks. Our first task is to create a genuinely revolutionary party and to break with the Mensheviks. But that is only a preparatory school. We are already convening the Third Congress, and Comrade Terracini keeps saying that the task of the preparatory school consists in hunting out, pursuing and exposing Centrists and semi-Centrists. No, thank you! We have already done this long enough. At the Second Congress we said that the Centrists are our enemies. But, we must go forward really. The second stage, after organising into a party, consists in learning to prepare for revolution.

(Lenin, Volume 32, page 474)

Lenin gave the only correct answer to all opportunists:

"A split with such people is necessary and inevitable, for it is impossible to accomplish the socialist revolution if you join hands with those who pull in the direction of the bourgeoisie."

"Anyone who has read Marx and failed to understand that in capitalist society, at every acute moment, in every serious class conflict, the alternative is either the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie or the dictatorship of the proletariat, has understood nothing of either the economic or the political doctrines of Marx."

(Lenin, Volume 29, page 313)

 

* * *

Unity with social fascists is betrayal of the world revolution, betrayal of the world proletariat, betrayal of world socialism, is the pact with the bourgeoisie against the proletariat.

In his article "On the Tasks of the Third International" Lenin exposed the "Berne" International as:

(1) ... an organisation of agents of international imperialism operating within the labour movement, permeating that movement with bourgeois influence, bourgeois ideas, bourgeois lies, and bourgeois corruption. (Lenin Volume 29, page 502)

(2) ... that the Third, Communist, International has been formed so as to prevent “socialists” from confining themselves to the verbal recognition of revolution, (...) which in fact concealed a thoroughly opportunist, reformist, nationalist, petty-bourgeois policy, was the basic sin of the Second International, and we are waging a life-and-death struggle against this evil.

(Lenin Volume 29, page 503-504)

In the fight against the opportunism of the "Berne" International Lenin emphasized:

"In order to really defeat opportunism, which caused the shameful death of the Second International, in order to really assist the revolution (...) it is necessary:

Firstly, to conduct all propaganda and agitation from the viewpoint of revolution as opposed to reforms, systematically explaining to the masses, both theoretically and practically.

Secondly, legal work must be combined with illegal work.

Thirdly, unswerving and ruthless war must be waged for the expulsion from the labour movement of all those opportunist leaders.

Fourthly, a party which is hostile to imperialism in words but in deeds does not wage a revolutionary struggle within “its own” colonies for the overthrow of “its own” bourgeoisie, does not systematically assist the revolutionary work which has already begun everywhere in the colonies, and does not send arms and literature to the revolutionary parties in the colonies, is a party of scoundrels and traitors.

Fifthly, the extreme hypocrisy of the parties of the Berne International is to be seen in their typical recognition of revolution in words while they flaunt before the workers high-sounding phrases about recognising revolution but as far as deeds are concerned go no farther than adopting a purely reformist attitude to those beginnings, elements, manifestations of the growth of revolution in all mass actions which break bourgeois laws and go beyond the bounds of all legality, as for example, mass strikes, street demonstrations, soldiers’ protests, meetings among the troops, leaflet distribution in barracks, camps, etc.

(Lenin Volume 29, page 504-506)

The Kautskys and MacDonalds continue to frighten the capitalists with the menace of revolution, to scare the bourgeoisie with the menace of civil war in order to obtain concessions from them and get them to agree to follow the reformist path. This is what all the writings, all the philosophy, all the policy of the entire Berne International amount to.

(Lenin Volume 29, page 507-508)

The leaders of the Berne International are not only participants in a thieves’ supper, but even in a vile assassins’ supper. Heroes of the Berne International belong to the same organisation as the Scheidemanns who engineered the murder of Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg, the Scheidemanns who fulfilled the role of worker-executioners and rendered hangman’s service to the bourgeoisie.

(Lenin Volume 29, page 509)

 

 

III
Lenin's Two-Fronts-Fighting against the main danger of Right-Wing Opportunism and against "Left-Wing Radicalism"

 

Why is right-wing opportunism the main danger?
One can not answer this question without exposing the economic roots of opportunism. With their globalized exploitation, the world imperialists have amassed huge sums of money to pay their bribes.

In his speech to the Second World Congress of the Comintern, Lenin said:

Why is this opportunism stronger in Western Europe than in our country? It is because the culture of the advanced countries has been, and still is, the result of their being able to live at the expense of a thousand million oppressed people. It is because the capitalists of these countries obtain a great deal more in this way than they could obtain as profits by plundering the workers in their own countries.

(...) It is these thousands of millions in superprofits that form the economic basis of opportunism in the working class movement. "

(Lenin, Volume 31, page 230)

For the resistance to the communist world movement, the world bourgeoisie is corrupting the labor aristocracy and bourgeois intelligentsia, financing both open anti-communism and disguised anti-communism - opportunism.

"The purging of the workers’ parties, the revolutionary parties of the proletariat all over the world, of bourgeois influences, of the opportunists in their ranks, is very far from complete.

Opportunism is our principal enemy.

Opportunism in the upper ranks of the working-class movement is bourgeois socialism, not proletarian socialism.

It has been shown in practice that working-class activists who follow the opportunist trend are better defenders of the bourgeoisie than the bourgeois themselves. Without their leadership of the workers, the bourgeoisie could not remain in power.

(Lenin, Volume 31, page 231)

Lenin directed the main fire in the Comintern against the right elements in communism. Lenin always fought on two fronts, both against the "left" deviation in communism and against the right deviation. The changing priority in the struggle against "left" and right opportunism must always be viewed and decided from a historical point of view, as Lenin wrote in 1920:

" Such leaders of the Second International, such highly erudite Marxists devoted to socialism as Kautsky, Otto Bauer and others, in the application of Marxist dialectic they proved to be undialectical in practice, incapable of taking into account the rapid change of forms and the rapid acquisition of new content by the old forms."

"We must see to it that Communists do not make a similar mistake, only in the opposite sense, or rather, we must see to it that a similar mistake, only made in the opposite sense by the “Left” Communists, is corrected as soon as possible and eliminated as rapidly and painlessly as possible. It is not only Right doctrinairism that is erroneous; Left doctrinairism is erroneous too. Of course, the mistake of Left doctrinairism in communism is at present a thousand times less dangerous and less significant than that of Right doctrinairism (i.e., social-chauvinism and Kautskyism); but, after all, that is only due to the fact that Left communism is a very young trend, is only just coming into being. It is only for this reason that, under certain conditions, the disease can be easily eradicated, and we must set to work with the utmost energy to eradicate it."

(Lenin, Volume 31, page 102 - 103)

So let us never underestimate "leftist" doctrinairism in preparing the world revolution, and all the less during and after the world socialist revolution. Whether "left" or right opportunism is the greater danger in a determined historical situation depends not least on which of both we have underestimated.

If right-wing opportunism is not resolutely opposed up to the end, not crushed, then it can not be prevented that right-wing opportunism produces opposing "leftist" opportunist currents and lines.
This is valid also the other way round.
If "leftist" opportunism is not resolutely opposed up to the end, not crushed, then it can not be prevented that "left"-wing opportunism produces opposing right-wing opportunist currents and lines.

Stalin defined the struggle against opportunism on two fronts liek this:

"One must not lag behind the movement, because to do so is to loose contact with the masses. But neither must one run too far ahead, because to run too far ahead is to loose the masses and to isolate oneself. He who wants to lead a movement and at the same time keep in touch with the vast masses must wage a fight on two fronts — against those who lag behind and against those who run too far ahead."

(Stalin, Volume 12, page 205)

Those who want to defend Stalinism-Hoxhaism against opportunism must fight both those who want to hinder its further development and those who want to overtake Stalinism-Hoxhaism on the "left" lane.

As far as "left-wing radicalism" is concerned, we must always have in mind that it is essentially nothing else than the right opportunism, only masked with the red label of "left" phrases.

A prime example is the later leader of the Comintern, Bukharin, who first appeared as a "left communist" against Lenin, and then, as the right opportunist, planned several assassinations against Stalin. Such leaders of the Comintern as Zinoviev and Bukharin were sentenced to death before they could finish their destructive work in the Comintern and in the Soviet Union. Only Dimitrov's life was spared, and as a token of gratitude he liquidated the Comintern.

The dialectic of the struggle against opportunism within the Comintern was such that the theoretical victory of Leninism and Stalinism forced the enemies to pretend to be "loyal followers" of the Comintern of Lenin and Stalin. It was perfectly clear from the total bankruptcy of the Second International and the betrayal of the Two-and-a-Half International (Kautsky) that right-wing opportunism could not gain access to the Comintern except through the "left" back door. Opportunism was thus forced to put on a "left" cloak for the purpose to be unrecognized.

It was their "left" exaggerations carried into the Comintern , which were not directed against opportunism, but in truth against Leninism. This was difficult to understand for many workers during the heyday of the revolution, which is why Lenin wrote the booklet "The Left Radicalism, the Infantile Disease in Communism" (April-May 1920). Lenin helped the young communist world movement to avoid "left-wing" mistakes and simlutaneously purified the Comintern from inconvincible "leftists" leaders. With his pamphlet against "left-wing radicalism," Lenin pointed out the only real way out: to expose the mistakes of the "ultra-left" leaders, and thus help the honest revolutionary workers to get on the right path.

As you know, the Bolsheviks dealt with "left-wing" exaggerations quite differently than the opportunists did. The Bolsheviks always corrected their "leftist" mistakes by the disciplined observance, by further development of their Bolshevik massline and deepening their work among the masses.

On the other hand, it was always the intention ans aim of the opportunists to turn every mistake and every deviation into a break with the Bolshevik line. Replacement of the revolutionary policy of the Comintern by an opportunist policy, adaptation of the policy of the Comintern to the policy of the bourgeoisie. This was the line of the opportunists dated from the founding until the dissolution of the Comintern.

To guide the masses on the right path, Lenin taught, one has to learn and master all the necessary forms of combat. At the same time, Lenin rejected both the forms of right-wing opportunism and the forms of "leftist" opportunism that cause serious damage to communism:

"The Communists must exert every effort to direct the working-class movement and social development in general along the straightest and shortest road to the victory of Soviet power and the dictatorship of the proletariat on a world-wide scale. That is an incontestable truth. But it is enough to take one little step farther—a step that might seem to be in the same direction—and truth turns into error.

Right doctrinairism persisted in recognising only the old forms, and became utterly bankrupt, for it did not notice the new content.

Left doctrinairism persists in the unconditional repudiation of certain old forms, failing to see that the new content is forcing its way through all and sundry forms, that it is our duty as Communists to master all forms, to learn how, with the maximum rapidity, to supplement one form with another, to substitute one for another, and to adapt our tactics to any such change that does not come from our class or from our efforts.

(Lenin, Volume 31, page 103)

However, if one insists on one's "left" mistakes, and even raises them to a principle, to a "dogma", then a direction emerges that is in opposite to the direction of the Comintern. It is not for nothing that Lenin regarded "leftist" opportunism the stirrup-holder of right-wing opportunism, as an ideology which does not pave to way to the revolution but to right-wing opportunism.

The sins of the "leftists" were that they did not know how to focus on the majority of the working masses, that they broke away from the masses, rushing ahead of them and falling into sectarianism instead of patiently leading the masses to revolution, including (!) their most backward elements.

Lenin's theory and practice of the Comintern consisted in the organization of the revolutionary mass movements against world capitalism. For this reason Lenin put the issue of the united front tactic on the agenda at the Third World Congress.

Concerning the united front, Lenin was critical to the results of Radek's an Bukharin's negotiations at the Berlin Conference of the three Internationals. This can be looked up in his article: "We have paid too much". Lenin's defence of the Bolshevik line in the question of the unity front against the Second International is also useful in our criticism at the neo-revisionist policy of the "unity front" of today:

"Communists must not stew in their own juice, but must learn to penetrate into prohibited premises where the representatives of the bourgeoisie are influencing the workers; and in this they must not shrink from making certain sacrifices and not be afraid of making mistakes, which, at first, are inevitable in every new and difficult undertaking. The Communists who refuse to understand this and who do not want to learn how to do it cannot hope to win over the majority of the workers; at all events, they are hindering and retarding the work of winning this majority. For Communists, and all genuine adherents of the workers’ revolution, this is absolutely unpardonable.

Once again, the bourgeoisie, in the persons of their diplomats, have outwitted the representatives of the Communist International. Such is the lesson of the Berlin Conference. We shall not forget this lesson. We shall draw all the necessary conclusions from it.

The representatives of the Second and Two-and-a-Half Internationals need a united front, for they hope to weaken us by inducing us to make exorbitant concessions; they hope to penetrate into our communist premises without any payment; they hope to utilise united front tactics for the purpose of convincing the workers that reformist tactics are correct and that revolutionary tactics are wrong. We need a united front because we hope to convince the workers of the opposite.

We shall put the blame for the mistakes on our communist representatives who committed them, and on those parties which commit them, while we shall try to learn from these mistakes and to prevent a repetition of them in the future. But under no circumstances shall we thrust the blame for the mistakes of our Communists upon the proletarian masses, who all over the world are facing the onslaught of advancing capital. We adopted united front tactics in order to help these masses to fight capitalism, to help them understand the “cunning mechanism” of the two fronts in international economics and in international politics; and we shall pursue these tactics to the end.

(Lenin, Volume 33, page 333 - 334)

And what was the united front tactic of Dimitrov, was it that of Lenin's or that of the Second and the "Two-and-a-Half" International? What has Dimitrov "paid too much"?

Dimitrov first sacrificed the RILU, the Women's and Youth International, the Red Peasant International - and finally all the mass organizations of the Comintern, before liquidating the Comintern itself. How blind can one be, not to see that one can never voluntarily dissolve one's own communist organizations (!). Without all these organizational fighting instruments, the world proletariat is unable to overthrow the rule of the world bourgeoisie, to smash world capitalism and to establish the dictatorhsip of the world proletariat.

Disarming communism instead of disarming capitalism - that was the purpose, meaning and result of the revisionist united front tactic of Dimitrov. Dimitrov paid too much. He violated the lesson of Lenin: "to prevent a repetition in future", namely the repetition of Bukharin's mistakes about concessions to the united front. And today we defend Lenin's lesson against the neo-revisionists.

* * *

Lenin called "left-wing radicalism" an "infantile desease in communism". This was in 1920. After 100 years, however, "left-wing radicalism" can hardly be considered anymore as an "infantile disease".

Even before the dissolution of the Comintern, this pamphlet of Lenin served the Comintern's right-wing leaders to accuse the Stalinists in the Comintern of their alleged "dogmatism", "sectarianism" and even of their "left-wing radicalism". The Stalinists were condemned and purged by traitors of the Comintern under the mask of "Stalinism". The revisionist leaders of the Comintern did not even shrink from handing over the German comintern leader, Ernst Thalmann, and his most loyal combat companions to the Nazis.

 

Since that time, the modern revisionists have always used Lenin's "The Left Radicalism, the Infantile Disease in Communism" as an ideological weapon against the revolutionary line of Marxist-Leninists. And today it is the neo-revisionists in particular who are trying to fight us Stalinist-Hoxhaists y means of Lenin's brochure.

* * *

 

In the beginning, when the basic principles of the Comintern were determined, the opportunists misused the necessary discussion for their demagogic slogan of "freedom of critique" (that is: freedom of the opportunists for their anti-Leninist propaganda in the Comintern!). They tried to dissuade the Comintern bit by bit from their Leninist line, allegedly by "leaning on Leninism". This criminal tactic later was applied by Dimitrov, only that he did not hide his opportunism behind "Leninism" but behind "Stalinism".

Lenin believed that a discussion on issues of decision to be necessary, but this includes that , discussions must have their limits. The Comintern is a fighting organization of the world proletariat and not a "left-wing" discussion club.

For his part, Lenin, in the Bolshevik Party as well as in the Comintern, took the liberty to fight not only against the opportunist quagmire but also against those who turned to this swamp.

These included, in particular, the oppositional groups such as - Trotskyists, "Workers' Opposition" (Schljapnikow, Kollontai, Medvedev), "Left Communists" (Preobrazhensky and Bukharin - who later replaced Zinoviev as leader of the Comintern), "Democratic Centralists" (Sapronov, Bugoslavsky) and so on - which forced the Bolshevik party into a destructive discussion. The main wire-puller was Trotsky, who had a not inconsiderable influence in the Comintern at that time, in order to also fuel such harmful discussions there.

Incidentally, Lenin called Bukharin's behavior an "ideological depravity which beats everything." Soon after, the Bukharinists openly allied with the Trotskyists in struggle against Lenin, who had made his main strike against the Trotskyites.

Lenin described the hostile discussion not only as "unfair luxury," but also as a criminal means of disorganization and liquidation of the party.

First instigating confusion and afterwards playing the "expert" who would be predestined how to "remove any kind of confusions" - this is a common trait of all opportunists!

Opportunism always sprang from the desire to bow to the interests of the bourgeoisie, to sabotage the struggle for the world revolution in the Comintern, and to re-establish capitalism in the Soviet Union in order to destroy there the basis and lever of the world revolution.

At the X. Party Congress, Lenin defeated the factionalism of the "Opposition" group.

 

In addition, his resolution "On the syndicalist and anarchist deviation" was adopted (Kronstadt mutiny). As far as the anarchist and the petty bourgeois "revolutionism" were concerned, Lenin explained:

"Anarchism was not infrequently a kind of penalty for the opportunist sins of the working-class movement."

(Lenin, Volume 31, page 32)

This is still true today on a world scale, because the hatred of the masses for the hypocrisy of opportunists is used for the purpose of anarchist propaganda. And when Lenin spoke of the fact that the revolutionary Bolshevik struggle against opportunism and its peaceful path of reform helped to undermine the influence of anarchists in the workers' movement, it was undoubtedly Lenin's merit that the Comintern in the international scale could contribute to this. The downsizing of the influence of syndicalism and anarchism among the masses is one of the great merits of the massline of the Comintern.

If we fight today against international anarchism and syndicalism, it is a two-front struggle that must be waged against opportunism at the same time, because both are in mutual relation.

 

* * *


The two-front struggle must be adapted to the high and low tide of the revolutionary world movement.
Stalinism-Hoxhaism teaches that with every high and low tide of world revolution there is in correspondence also inevitably the high and low tide of opportunism ( concerning both right-wing and "left"-wing opportunism).

Both in the ebb and in the tide of the revolutionary movement the danger of opportunism threatens from both sides, as Stalin teaches us:

"The transition itself from upsurge to lull, by its very nature, increases the chances of danger from the Right. Whereas an upsurge gives rise to revolutionary illusions and causes the Left danger to become the principal one, a lull, on the contrary, gives rise to Social-Democratic, reformist illusions and causes the Right danger to become the principal one.

There is the danger of over-estimating the importance of partial demands to the detriment of fundamental demands, of over-estimating parliamentary activity and work in the trade unions. That is the danger from the Right, for it leads to adapting oneself to the bourgeoisie. On the other hand, there is the danger of under-estimating the importance of partial demands, of parliamentary activity, of work in the trade unions, and so forth. That is the danger from the Left, for it leads to becoming divorced from the masses and to sectarianism.

In 1920, when the working-class movement was on the upgrade, Lenin wrote his pamphlet "Left-Wing" Communism, an Infantile Disorder. Why did Lenin write this particular pamphlet? Because at that time the Left danger was the more serious danger. I think that if Lenin were alive he would now write another pamphlet entitled Right-Wing Communism, an Old-Age Disorder, because, at the present time, in the period of lull, when illusions about compromise are bound to grow, the Right danger is the most serious danger.

I must say, comrades, that the lull is not a period of the absence of all action. The lull is a period of forming and training the proletarian armies, a period of preparing them for revolution. But the proletarian armies can be trained only in the course of action".

"Why did the old Social-Democracy perish as a revolutionary Party? Among other things, because Kautsky and Co. did indeed employ the "fine" tactics of shielding and saving the Rights, the "delicate" tactics of "unity and peace" with Ed. Bernstein and Co. What was the result? The result was that at the crucial moment, just before the war, the Right-wing Social-Democrats betrayed the workers, the "orthodox" became the prisoners of the Rights, and Social-Democracy as a whole proved to be a "living corpse."

(Stalin, Works, Volume 7: Speech Delivered in the Czechoslovak Commission of the E.C.C.I; January 17, 1925)

It is worth answering the question whether the revolutionary Comintern of Lenin and Stalin has transformed itself into a "living corpse" in a similar way as the German Social Democracy!

Any transition period between the high and low tide required a new orientation. Usually this transition period provoked this or that crisis in the Comintern, which was then exploited by the opportunists (example: "Third Period").

The Comintern was always threatened from both sides, first from the "left". Then, especially after the third period of the Comintern (when the mass influence of the Comintern was at greatest after the end of the stabilization of capitalism), the Comintern was attacked by the right-wing opportunists. The turning point, when opportunism came into power on the VII World Congress, was simultaneously the beginning of the end of the Comintern.

The peculiarity is that the opportunists always behaved as if they themselves would be " the fighters" against opportunism, sometimes against "left" - sometimes against right - depending on requirements.

The right-wing opportunists always protected the "left-wing" opportunists and the other way around, but never protected the Comintern. For the opportunists, their "two-front struggle" was, in turn, an antidote of the Bolshevik two-front struggle. "Defending" the Comintern in an opportunist manner, that means a "defence" until it could no longer be defended.

If the Comintern is in the fight against the right-wing opportunism, then theopportunists try to replace the Comintern line by the line of the "left" opportunists. Conversely, the right-wing opportunists try to replace the Bolshevik line un der the mask of "defending" the Comintern against "left" opportunism. In order to crush this interplay of right and "left" opportunism (through the centrists), the Comintern can only defeat opportunism in a two-front struggle.

Anyone who has understood the dialectics of opportunism within the tides of class struggle also acknowledges that the methods of combating them must necessarily correspond precisely to this dialectic. Lenin was a master in the mastery of this dialectical methodology and allowed opportunists to die easily of "natural causes" under special conditions. That seems to sound paradoxical. Does not this contradict the revolutionary principle that "nothing falls if it is not torn down"? No, this is not paradoxicality but is the Leninist dialectic of the fight against opportunism, by its very nature!

We find the answer in Lenin's letter to the German Communists of August 14, 1921:

The Third Congress of the Communist International faced them [the semi-anarchist elements] with an ultimatum and fixed a definite time limit. If they have now voluntarily resigned from the Communist International, all the better. Firstly, they have saved us the trouble of expelling them. Secondly, it has now been demonstrated most conclusively and most graphically, and proved with precise facts to all vacillating workers, and all those who have been inclined towards anarchism because of their hatred for the opportunism of the old Social-Democrats, that the Communist International has been patient, that it has not expelled anarchists immediately and unconditionally, and that it has given them an attentive hearing and helped them to learn.

We must now pay less attention to the K.A.P.-ists. By polemising with them we merely give them publicity. They are too unintelligent; it is wrong to take them seriously; and it is not worth being angry with them. They have no influence among the masses, and will acquire none, unless we make mistakes. Let us leave this tiny trend to die a natural death; the workers themselves will realise that it is worthless. Let us propagate and implement, with greater effect, the organisational and tactical decisions of the Third Congress of the Communist International, instead of giving the K.A.P.-ists publicity by arguing with them. The infantile disorder of “Leftism”is passing and will pass away as the movement grows.

Similarly we are now needlessly helping Paul Levi, we are needlessly giving him publicity by polemising with him. That we should argue with him is exactly what he wants. Now, after the decisions of the Third Congress of the Communist International, we must forget about him and devote all our attention, all our efforts, to peaceful, practical and constructive work (without any squabbling, polemics, or bringing up of the quarrels of yesterday), in the spirit of the decisions of the Third Congress.

(Lenin, Volume 32, pages 514-515)

Lenin suggested that elements who "acted headless" in the individual Sections insist close-mindedly on their opportunistic mistakes and send those - who are difficult to convince - to Russia for a few years:

We would find useful work for them. We would make men of them. And the international and German movement would certainly gain thereby.

(Lenin, Volume 32, pages 519)

And this suggestion of Lenin was then put into practice, for some comrades with success and for others with less success.

Lenin described the high and low tide of opportunism concretely in terms of the correct behavior of a revolutionary towards the changing conditions from legality to illegality:

Inexperienced revolutionaries often think that legal methods of struggle are opportunist because, in this field, the bourgeoisie has most frequently deceived and duped the workers (particularly in “peaceful” and non-revolutionary times), while illegal methods of struggle are revolutionary. That, however, is wrong. The truth is that those parties and leaders are opportunists and traitors to the working class that are unable or unwilling (do not say, “I can’t”; say, “I shan’t”) to use illegal methods of struggle in conditions such as those which prevailed, for example, during the imperialist war of 1914–18, when the bourgeoisie of the freest democratic countries most brazenly and brutally deceived the workers, and smothered the truth about the predatory character of the war. But revolutionaries who are incapable of combining illegal forms of struggle with every form of legal struggle are poor revolutionaries indeed. It is not difficult to be a revolutionary when revolution has already broken out and is in spate, when all people are joining the revolution just because they are carried away, because it is the vogue, and sometimes even from careerist motives. After its victory, the proletariat has to make most strenuous efforts, even the most painful, so as to “liberate” itself from such pseudo-revolutionaries. It is far more difficult—and far more precious—to be a revolutionary when the conditions for direct, open, really mass and really revolutionary struggle do not yet exist, to be able to champion the interests of the revolution (by propaganda, agitation and organisation) in non-revolutionary bodies, and quite often in downright reactionary bodies, in a non-revolutionary situation, among the masses who are incapable of immediately appreciating the need for revolutionary methods of action. To be able to seek, find and correctly determine the specific path or the particular turn of events that will lead the masses to the real, decisive and final revolutionary struggle—such is the main objective of communism in Western Europe and in America today.

(Lenin, Volume 31, pages 96-97)

Even if the situation is non-revolutionary, the Second International is in error and carries a heavy responsibility if it is really unwilling to organise revolutionary propaganda and agitation, since, as has been proved by the entire history of the Bolshevik Party, revolutionary propaganda can and should be conducted even in a situation that is not revolutionary. The difference between the socialists and the Communists consists in the former refusing to act in the way we act in any situation, i.e., conduct revolutionary work.

(Lenin, Volume 31, pages 251)

The transition from the desire to be revolutionary and from talk (and resolutions) about revolution to real revolutionary work is very difficult, painful and slow.

(Lenin, Volume 32, pages 514)

In the opinion of Lenin, this applies especially to those countries where there has not been a revolution for a long time and where the revolution can only be read in books. Not bookish knowledge, but the revolutionary activity itself is the greatest master of the revolution.

Let us also remember the teachings of Enver Hoxha, who critisized the bourgeois "dialectic" of Maoism that states the "indispensable" coexistence of the bourgeois and proletarian line would allegedly be the "development law" of the Communist Party. In the contrary, this is the law of the opportunists how the degenerate and split the Comintern. In contrast to Maoism, Lenin and Stalin recognized criticism and self-criticism as the one and only developmental law of the Bolshevik world party. There is either the proletarian or bourgeois line of the Comintern, but never the opportunist principle of the coexistence of both. The class struggle in the Comintern cannot be replaced by a peaceful cooperation among opposed lines in the sense of a Maoist "fight-of-the-lines". There is only place for one line in the Comintern - for the Bolshevik line. The struggle for the Bolshevization of the Comintern was a life-and-death struggle against the opportunist.

A Marxist-Leninist party that is respected as such, says Comrade Enver Hoxha, can not allow for the existence of two lines in the party, so it can not allow the existence of a faction or factions. So the party must not tolerate its existence, even not if only for a short time. (Enver Hoxha: Reports and Speeches, 1967-1968)

Lenin and Stalin have proven that hostile currents and lines do not necessarily arise and develop. These are avoidable. They put a stop to these hostile currents and lines and the Bolshevik unity was protected and strengthened by them.

Lenin's ideological struggle in the Comintern was directed against the enemies and the traitors; against deviations, misrepresentations and violations of resolutions and directives of the Comintern; against shortcomings, mistakes and inadequacies in the work of the leading organs and sections of the Comintern, against opportunism, dogmatism, sectarianism and all kinds of foreign, anti-Marxist views. Simultaneously, this ideological struggle within the Comintern was also a political struggle, a struggle with all its organizational consequences for the opportunists, a struggle of "who-whom? The Comintern, who had followed a correct line under the leadership of Lenin and Stalin and proved capable of leading the masses in the revolutionary struggle, finally did not march further forward on this road. The Comintern changed course at the 7th World Congress and had adopted the bourgeois-revisionist course. The Dimotrov clique (the "Comintern within the Comintern") has betrayed the cause of the world proletariat, world revolution and world communism. It surrendered to the pressure and blackmail of the class enemies, to the wave of the "left" wing of social democracy. The Comintern allowed the enemy to invade their ranks - and finally take control.

* * *

The Stalinism-Hoxhaism teaches that one can defeat neither the "left"opportunism with the right opportunism, nor the right opportunism with the "left" opportunism, but only with the Stalinism-Hoxhaismus.

This, however, does not exclude the tactics applied by Lenin to take advantage of the struggle of the rightst opportunists and "left" opportunists namely for the purpuse to redirect the opportunist weapons against the opportunists - to a degree, under certain conditions and in due course.

Everyone knows that the opportunists - whether "left", right or centrist - are agents of the bourgeoisie.But it has also happened that the Bolsheviks have been mistaken in individual cases and the opportunists have been right. For example, Lenin practiced self-criticism when he defended the Menshevik Levi on the Third World Congress in face of the majority of "left" opportunists which where dominant there. But the Comintern had understood afterwards, how to correct the mistakes which were commited by the "leftists" on the Third Congress.

If we are not afraid of admitting our mistakes, not afraid of making repeated efforts to rectify them—we shall reach the very summit.

(Lenin, Volume 33, page 211)

How do the opportunists deal with criticism and self-criticism?

The opportunists turned this Bolshevik development law of the Comintern into the opposite - the one opportunists openly and the others have hidden behind "revolutionary" phraseology.

The opportunists do not criticize the mistakes of the Comintern to free the Comintern from their mistakes. The opportunists tried to drive the Comintern into every imaginable case of error and wrong direction in order to weaken the Comintern. What is right for the Comintern is "wrong" for opportunists. And what the Comintern considers wrong, the opportunists defend as "right".

Criticism and self-criticism in words, feigning remorse, but ultimately not willing to give up the criticized opportunist positions - that is the true face of the opportunists.
The difference between right-wing opportunist and "leftist" opportunist critique and self-criticism is that some criticize the Comintern openly from the right, while others seek to substantiate their criticism with quotes from the classics of Marxism-Leninism. For the right-wing opportunists, the Comintern is "dogmatic" and "sectarian." And for the "left-wing" opportunists, the Comintern is "right-wing opportunistic". Lenin and Stalin have repeatedly exposed the hypocrisy of the opportunists, which is to practice criticism and self-criticism in words, but in fact not to correct their mistakes in the end.

 

* * *

The fight against opportunism in the Comintern was carried out by Lenin in three steps

(see: Lenin, Volume 32, pages 544-545):

First, the Communists had to proclaim their principles to the world. That was done at the First Congress. It was the first step.

This was also the first step of the Comintern (SH).

The second step was to give the Communist International organisational form and to draw up conditions for affiliation to it—conditions making for real separation from the Centrists, from the direct and indirect agents of the bourgeoisie within the working-class movement. That was done at the Second Congress.

The Comintern (SH) has taken the decisions on the reception conditions and on the organizational structure in 2015 and 2016. Separation from the centrists did not occur because there were not yet centrists at the very first stage of the Comintern (SH) construction. The struggle of the Comintern (SH) has so far focused outwards on the centrists in the international movement.

At the Third Congress it was necessary to start practical, constructive work, to determine concretely, taking account of the practical experience of the communist struggle already begun, exactly what the line of further activity should be in respect of tactics and of organisation. We have taken this third step. We have an army of Communists all over the world. It is still poorly trained and poorly organised. It would be extremely harmful to forget this truth or be afraid of admitting it. Submitting ourselves to a most careful and rigorous test, and studying the experience of our own movement, we must train this army efficiently; we must organise it properly, and test it in all sorts of manoeuvres, all sorts of battles, in attack and in retreat. We cannot win without this long and hard schooling.

The “crux”of the situation in the international communist movement in the summer of 1921 was that some of the best and most influential sections of the Communist International did not quite properly understand this task; they exaggerated the “struggle against Centrism”ever so slightly ; they went ever so slightly beyond the border line at which this struggle turns into a pastime and revolutionary Marxism begins to be compromised.

It was difficult to combat it, because the exaggerating was done by really the best and most loyal elements, without whom the formation of the Communist International would, perhaps, have been impossible.

Exaggeration of the struggle against Centrism means saving Centrism, means strengthening its position, its influence over the workers.

In the period between the Second and the Third Congresses, we learned to wage a victorious struggle against Centrism on an international scale. This is proved by the facts. We will continue to wage this struggle (expulsion of Levi and of Serrati’s party) to the end.

We have, however, not yet learned, on an international scale, to combat wrong exaggerations in the struggle against Centrism. But we have become conscious of this defect, as has been proved by the course and outcome of the Third Congress. And precisely because we have become conscious of our defect we will rid ourselves of it.

The Comintern (SH) has taken Lenin's teachings to heart and, starting in 2018, began focusing much more on the working class in its propaganda work under the slogan: "Get closer to the masses!" We are still in the first stage of party building, which is why we can not carry out any mass actions yet. For the time being, the conquest of the majority of the world proletariat is out of the question. But we are in the process of promoting propaganda solutions adapted to the present situation of the proletariat in different countries, with the aim of winning the most advanced workers for the Comintern (SH) and forge them as the avant-garde.

 

IV

The victory of the rightist opportunism as a result of turning away from the teachings of Lenin against opportunism

 

How is it possible to prepare for revolution and advance towards decisive battles, when there are people in the party who sabotage the revolution? That is not merely a mistake but a crime. That is the pith and marrow of the matter!

(Lenin, Volume 31, page 382)

The Comintern (SH) fully agrees with Lenin. To put the opportunist Dimitrov at the head of the Comintern turned out to be an absolutely bad choice, that was a serious mistake. But to continue to tolerate Dimitrov as head of the Comintern, when it was already clear that he was openly heading for liquidation, was no longer just a mistake, but - as Lenin says - a crime on the Comintern. Is it possible to commit a greater crime on the Comintern than to liquidate it? No, there can be no worse crime. Of course, neo-revisionists can not agree with our view. This view can only be supported by those, who have the courage to defend Lenin, the founder of the Comintern who created this international instrument of struggle against opportunism. The Comintern was the best weapon against international opportunism that the world proletariat had ever possessed.

It was a terrible mistake to dissolve the Comintern. We have to suffer under this loss until today. We revolutionaries are not afraid to say this bitter truth to every worker around the world. At the same time, we asseverate the workers that the Comintern (SH) will never repeat this mistake. And, after all, on the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Comintern, after 19 years of activity of the Comintern (SH), we have already been able to prove to the workers that we keep our word.

With the 7th World Congress, the opportunists forced the Comintern to leave its holy course of the world revolution. However, if this wrong course is not corrected in time, if it is continued, instead, all this can lead to nothing else than to the dissolution of the Comintern. Then there is no more the party that could have led the world proletariat to victory. It would have been better to break with opportunism in time and replace the opportunist comintern leadership with a revolutionary comintern leadershipwhich would stick to the revolutionary world programm of the Comintern. But that did not happen, because it was unfortunately already too late for that.

What would Lenin have said on the coming disaster of the Comintern?

"Something is wrong in the International! Then we must say: 'Stop! There must be a decisive fight! Otherwise the Communist International is lost."

(Lenin, Volume 32, page 471)

But because the Comintern tolerated the opportunists, it was impossible to win in the world revolution, let alone protect it.

On the eve of the proletarian revolution, the liberation, the freedom, of the parties of the revolutionary proletariat from opportunists and “Centrists”, from their influence, their prejudices, their weaknesses and vacillations, is the main and essential condition of success.

(Lenin, Volume 31, page 396; 11.12.1920)

Throughout the history of the Comintern to the Seventh World Congress, the opportunists in words were consistently "for" the world revolution, while in their actions they naturally opposed them at every opportunity. But since the Seventh World Congress, the opportunists have for the first time dropped this mask. What does that show us?

If the opportunist leadersof the Comintern were able to renounce their previous masquerade, it is an unmistakable sign that they have actually taken power into their hands and eliminated any revolutionary resistance. Now Dimitrov was free to form an open pact with the bourgeoisie, whereas Lenin had once founded the Comintern for the purpose to prevent this.

Lenin had combated the concessions of the opportunists to the bourgeoisie not just since the Comintern but long before in the Second and the Two-and-a-Half International. And it was Stalin who consistently continued this fight in the Comintern and stifled any plans of concessions to social fascists. However, it is well known that Stalin's social fascism thesis was replaced by Dimitrov's people's-front thesis.

Falsely, Dimitrov, leader of the betrayed Comintern, is portrayed by the bourgeoisie as "loyal follower of Stalin," (or expressed more aptly) as his submissive "footman." Why is the bourgeoisie resorting to this lie?

It is because the bourgeoisie saw their main enemy in Stalinism and therefore, the bourgeoisie blames Dimitrov's crimes on Comrade Stalin. That is why the bourgeoisie is still presenting the betrayal of Dimitrov as alleged "Stalinism". Stalin did not dissolve the Comintern of Lenin but the Comintern of Dimitrov. The bourgeoisie keeps silence on this truth.

Remember Lenin who said:

“No one in the world can compromise the revolutionary Marxists, if they do not compromise themselves.”

(Lenin, Volume 32, page 517)

And what do the capitalists say to the workers? (or more precisely, their Trotskyist mouthpiece):

"Never forget that the Stalinists only fooled you with the world revolution all years along, because what did the Stalinists do in the end with your world revolution? They themselves abolished the Comintern ! It was the Stalinists who betrayed your world revolution and not us capitalists! "

This is again and again the old demagogic, Trotskyist prayer wheel with which the bourgeoisie later blamed the Marxist-Leninists for the crimes of the modern revisionists: "Socialfascists = Stalinists" (- and a little bit modified today: "Socialfascists = Stalinist-Hoxhaists").

With the dissolution of the Comintern, the opportunists opened the door to modern revisionists around the world. And that could never have been achieved by the world bourgeoisie without the opportunists of the Comintern.

Dimitrov's allegedly "obedient" attitude toward Stalin, the Bolshevik Party, and the Soviet Union was the purest mascerade, a split tongue, only to conceal his revisionist sabotage work in the Comintern. In the most outrageous way, Dimitrov abused the sheer untold trust and boundless prestige enjoyed by the Comintern, the Soviet Union, and Stalin in the Communist world movement.

The real danger of Dimitrov was, above all, to create with his praise and victory hymns an atmosphere of carelessness against the growing bourgeois influence in the Comintern, thus lulling the sections and neglecting their Bolshevik vigilance. The rotten theory of the "sure-fire success" of the Comintern is a capitulatory theory that is so highly acceptable to opportunists because they dared declare opportunism as "defeated" under Stalin's great banner of victory. However, if no one is needed anymore to stop the opportunists from harming the Comintern, it already means their death sentence. When the opportunists celebrated the "end of the danger of opportunism," they celebrated in truth the end of the glorious Comintern of Lenin and Stalin. The monument to the Comintern was erected for Dimitrov, not for Lenin and Stalin. It is not the Comintern of Lenin and Stalin who is celebrated, but the betrayal of Dimitrov at the Comintern. At the latest on 31 December 2000, the opportunists have lost their joy for these celebrations, and the hatred of the neo-revisionists on the Comintern (SH) grows with every new day.

Only by constant vigilance, only by in-depth knowledge of the enemies, the methods, forms and means of their devastating work, can the dangers be removed and the revisionist, opposing tendencies and lines eliminated.

The struggle against opportunism succeeds only if at the same time the foreign ideas in the heads of the Stalinist-Hoxhaists, the causes of those symptoms, and their essentially reactionary ideological roots are revealed and overcome.

The fight against opportunism must, in order to be effective, be offensive. One must not wait until opportunistic manifestations become noticeable. Then it may already be too late. Rather, the Comintern (SH) needs to prepare for such a struggle ideologically and politically, so that the party members can recognize and judge all opportunistic things by themselves, namely
always from the proletarian class point of view, on the basis of the Stalinist-Hoxhaist ideology and politics of the Comintern (SH), by means of dialectical materialism. The best means of preparing for the correct and consistent conduct of the struggle against opportunism within and outside the ranks of the Party is the thorough appropriation of every fundamental document and all the principles and norms of the Comintern (SH), the study and appropriation of the Stalinist-Hoxhaist Theory in close association with the teachings of the Comintern of Lenin and Stalin.

For opportunists, there is nothing that can be hidden from our watchful eyes.

"Every concession, every attack, every liberalism, every underestimation of mistakes and shortcomings," comrade Enver Hoxha teaches, "causes unpredictable damage, makes the situation lazy, and nobody but the enemy wants such a condition to occur.
However this can happen if we do not all rise and unite like one man in the party ... for fighting these occurrences. "

(Enver Hoxha, Reports and Speeches, 1972 - 1973)

Dimitrov conveyed the deceptive impression that the Comintern did not need to worry about the danger posed by the opportunists because ths matter was allegedly "firmly under control" of it. With this fraud maneuver he obtained the necessary freedom of action to prepare the liquidation of the Comintern undisturbed behind the scenes. The extent to which Dimitrov actually worked for years behind Stalin's back with the bourgeoisie became known at the latest when Dimitrov's collaboration with social-fascist Tito was no longer concealed from Stalin's eyes and flew open.

In order to close the Comintern apparatus, the world bourgeoisie needed access to its central lever, she had to resort to the opportunist Comintern leaders, who, for example, stopped any further world congress so that any possible resistance of the Sections was excluded.

The bitter experience of the dissolution of the Comintern shows that bureaucracy in power is as much a threat as liberalism. The weapons of bureaucratism and liberalism were never used separately, but had always been intertwined.

The Comintern was located in Moscow and could not be banned from the outside by civil laws, not overwhelmed by police force, or eliminated with the help of the anti-Comintern. That could only succeed on the path of treachery, that is, only through the opportunists, through Dimitrov's power over the Comintern apparatus, with which the betrayal had been implemented into political practice.

It was Dimitrov who, with the dissolution of the Comintern, had betrayed the founder of the Comintern - our comrade Lenin.
And it was Lenin who had successfully continued the struggle against opportunism which Marx and Engels had already led at the time of the First International:

"The Second International is dead, decomposed by opportunism,. Down with opportunism, long live the Third International!"

Lenin taught that the proletarian international is developing in the fight against opportunism. That was the teaching of Lenin, which is further valid today in the struggle of the Comintern (SH) against neo-revisionism:

"The Comintern is dead, decomposed by Dimitrovism. Down with opportunism, long live the Comintern (SH)! "

This would have Lenin called out today, 100 years after he founding of the Comintern.

 

22. 04. 2019

Wolfgang Eggers


"PATH OF THE WORLD PARTY"

- Theoretical Organ -

Communist International (Stalinist - Hoxhaists)