Trotskyist Work in the Trade Unions (2/4)

Trotskyist Work in the Trade Unions

by C. Knox
Part 2 of 4

Minneapolis 1934 General Strike!

Throughout the 1930's the American Trotskyists had to work under an overwhelming organizational disadvantage compared to the Stalinists. Expelled in the late 1920's from a Communist Party which had already undergone years of political degeneration, the Trotskyist forces at first numbered no more than 100 as opposed to the CP's 7,000. Furthermore, after Stalin's abrupt shift into the "Third Period" in 1929, many elements in the CP who had been sympathetic to Trotsky were superficially impressed by the new ultra-leftism and apparent adoption of some of the slogans of the Left Opposition and were induced to remain in the CP. The main initial source of Trotskist recruitment was thus frozen off.

Despite the extreme sectarianism of the "Third Period," the CP reversed its decline and began to grow again during the early years of the Depression. CP-initiated unemployed leagues held militant demonstrations and attracted new forces. Despite the radical disproportion of forces, however, the CP could not tolerate the political threat represented by Trotsky's analysis and program. It immediately set out to destroy the American Trotskyists through physical gangsterism and cowardly exclusionism within the workers movement. Trotskyist meetings around the country were attacked by thugs and sometimes broken up.

"In those dog days of the movement we were shut off from all contact.... Whenever we tried to get into a workers organization we would be expelled as counter-revolutionary Trotskyists. We tried to send delegations to unemployed meetings. Our credentials would be rejected on the grounds that we were enemies of the working class. We were utterly isolated, forced in upon ourselves."
--James P. Cannon, History of American Trotskyism

Under such circumstances, the Trotskyists did little mass work. Their first duty was to save as many of the vanguard cadre as possible for the program of the revolution. A premature turn to mass work would have in fact meant meaningless, sterile isolation--an abandonment of the Trotskyist program. Opportunities for intervention such as the Progressive Miners of America in 1932 were the exception rather than the rule.

The victory of fascism in Germany in 1933 was a monumental defeat which went unopposed by the Communist International and caused only isolated defections in its ranks. The Left Opposition concluded that the Third International had definitively gone over to support of the bourgeois order, and pronounced it dead as a potentially revolutionary force. Instead of continuing to act as a bureaucratically-expelled faction of the CI, the Trotskyists announced their intention to build a new party and a new international. This coincided with a slight economic upturn which renewed confidence among employed workers and stimulated a dramatic upturn in the class struggle. Strikes increased, and the Trotskyists fought hard to break out of their isolation. They published special editions of the Militant for big events such as the Paterson silk strike, sent their leaders on tours, and even managed to speak at some of the larger unemployed conferences, despite continued hooliganism by the CP.

Into the AFL

The Depression heightened the crisis of proletarian leadership caused by the refusal of the bureaucratic, craft leadership of the American Federation of Labor to organize the unorganized in the 1920's. While millions were thrown out of work and millions more forced to accept wage cuts, the AFL continued its class-collaborationist, do-nothing policy, showing no more concern over the unemployment question than the capitalist government itself. After the 1929 stock market crash, AFL-head William Green had even offered the bosses a no-strike pledge, if only they would stop wage cuts (which, of course, they did not, prompting only more inaction by Green)! Most union leaders simply counseled passive acceptance of rampant wage-slashing by the bosses while the AFL campaigned against government unemployment insurance. John L. Lewis of the Mineworkers toured the country putting down strikes against wage cuts. By 1933, AFL membership, continuing its decline, hit a low of slightly over two million, which was about half what it had been in 1920.

The Rooseveltian "New Deal" economic program (under the National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933-NRA) was designed to improve business by encouraging "rationalization" (promoting government-backed trustification) and raise public confidence in the system through a massive propaganda campaign. However, the strike wave beginning in early 1933 included a high proportion of unorganized industrial workers, which caused Roosevelt to cave in to pressure from the AFL to include a "right to organize" clause (section 7-A of NRA). Actually representing no change in the realm of legal rights, the vague clause had the effect of both promoting company unions and building the authority of the AFL unions: in either case, it was designed to provide the bosses with an agency to contain the upsurge.

While the bosses busily set up company unions to control the workers, the AFL unions also began to expand-despite the fact that many of these unions had previously been reduced to discredited shells--because the AFL appeared to be the agency through which the benefits of the "New Deal" would filter down. The Trotskyists immediately recognized the vital implications of this trend for revolutionary work in the class struggle. "We must march with this instinctive movement and influence it from within," wrote Cannon in the Militant (2 September 1933).

The Stalinists, meanwhile, were still maintaining their ruinous "Third Period" policy of creating dual "red" unions everywhere. The supposition had been that the unorganized masses would be organized directly by the CP, over the heads of the AFL. A mere trifle had been lacking for the realization of this plan--the mass movement. Despite some party growth, sectarian isolation of the Communists had been the general result. The established unions were showing some new life, but the Stalinists had destroyed the basis for intervention with their absurd characterization of the AFL as "social fascist" and ordered their people out. The pure sectarianism of their line is illustrated by the fact that where real, industrial unions existed independently from the AFL, but not under Stalinist control--such as the Progressive Miners in the Southern Illinois coal fields and the Amalgamated Food Workers in New York City--the Stalinists maintained their paper "unions" anyway, "independent" of the independents!

The Trotskyist position was in no way a change in basic policy, despite the fact that they had earlier urged the formation of new unions, independent of the AFL, in some areas. The Trotskyists carried forth the Leninist policy of seeking to reach the masses as long as they remained in the reactionary unions, without placing any confidence in the reactionary bureaucracy. The surge into the AFL was a dramatic confirmation of Lenin's policy, and condemnation of Stalinist ultra-leftism, but, as Cannon continued:

"By this we do not at all commit ourselves to the fetishistic belief in the possibility of transforming the AF of L into a fighting instrument of the workers. We do not expect Green and Co. to organize the masses of unskilled workers.... The resurgent struggles of the masses... will probably break out of the formal bounds of the AF of L and seek expression in a new trade union movement."
--Militant, 2 September 1933

The course of the upsurge confirmed the Trotskyists' analysis. Massive strikes occurred, but the establishment of new mass unions along industrial lines was thwarted in strike after strike by AFL leaders. The craven betrayal of the nation-wide textile workers' strike in 1934, for instance, confirmed the South as an open-shop haven, which condition persists to this day.

In the entire period, there were only three real victories, all led by revolutionists or professed revolutionists: Stallnists led the San Francisco waterfront strike; the Musteite American Workers Party, later to fuse with the Trotskyists, led the Toledo Auto-Lite strike; and Trotskyists led the Minneapolis truck drivers' strikes. These strikes were successful because they established powerful new unions along industrial lines which spread throughout whole industries and regions. The organization of the bulk of the proletariat under revolutionary leadership, finally displacing the reactionary AFL leaders, clearly loomed. To head off this threat, a section of the AFL leaders later formed the CIO.

Hotel Strike Debacle: a Test of Principle

The turn to mass work did not change the sharp limitations on the Trotskyists' forces. They could only intervene directly in those unions in which they already had supporters. One such place was the Hotel and Restaurant section of the Amalgamated Food Workers of New York, an independent union, which began an organizing drive and called a general strike of hotel workers in early 1934, before the Minneapolis strikes. One Trotskyist particularly, B, J. Field, was propelled into the strike leadership, and the Trotskyists launched vigorously into the struggle. Putting the Militant on a special, three-times-a-week basis, they called on the Stalinists to merge their small "red" union into the AFW, urged a united-front policy aimed at the AFL, warned the workers against reliance on Roosevelt's "New Deal," and singled out recognition of the union as the key goal.

In the middle of the strike, however, Field began to pull away from the Trotskyists Communist League (CLA) and showed signs of opportunism. He collaborated too closely with trade-union bureaucrats and government mediators, caved in to red-baiting launched by the bosses, and ignored his party comrades. As Cannon put it, "He disregarded the fraction of his own party in the union--which is always the sign of a man who has lost his head" (History of American Trotskyism). With the national spotlight on the "Trotskyist" strike, the CLA expelled Field and denounced his turn to "respectability" in the middle of the struggle. While opportunists howled, the Trotskyists had demonstrated the strength of their principles to serious observers: no matter how temporarily important, mass leaders were always to be subordinated to the general will of the party and its guiding principles.

If the hotel strike had been a disappointment, the Trotskyists soon had another chance to demonstrate that they could lead mass struggle. In the Minneapolis Communist League of about 40 members and sympathizers, they had a core of experienced trade unionists from the CP--with backgrounds stretching back into the pre-CP left wing of the Socialist Party and Wobblies (IWW)--headed by Ray Dunne and Carl Skoglund. Both had been delegates to the Central Labor Union (local AFL council), and had been expelled from their unions in the red purges of the 1920's. In the CP, Dunne had been aligned with the Cannon group while Skoglund had been closer to Foster, but both (along with two of Dunne's three brothers) were summarily expelled simply for questioning the expulsion of the leading Trotskyists. Subsequently they did pioneer work organizing the CLA in Minneapolis, and by the turn to mass work in 1933, they were ready to begin a campaign to organize an industrial truck drivers' union which they had planned before their expulsion from the CP in 1928.

Three Strikes That Transformed the Northwest

They began by recognizing that even though the AFL had failed to win a strike in Minneapolis in decades (the city was a notorious citadel of the open shop), it was necessary to work through the established unions. Orienting toward General Drivers' Local 574, they made a bloc with a minority of the Local exec board, headed by President Bill Brown, which was willing to aid them in a militant organizing drive. Purposefully avoiding an immediate confrontation with the rest of the local bureaucracy, they planned to flood the local with newly-organized workers, cutting across craft divisions, and conduct a strike for recognition of the union by the trucking industry on an industrial basis. The question of leadership would be resolved in the process, through the test of the class struggle.

Since Dunne and Skoglund were working in the coal yards at the time, they began with a coal yard drivers' strike in February 1934, picking the middle of winter, when it would be most effective. Through meticulous attention to detail and advance planning, they took the bosses by surprise, shutting the yards down completely and involving masses of workers in picketing. The strike won union recognition in three days. This increased their base and authority within the union and laid the groundwork for a general strike of drivers and warehousemen throughout Minneapolis in May, which was equally well prepared, also took the bosses by surprise, and won fairly quickly. The Trotskyists insisted on the inclusion of the warehousemen ("inside workers"), since this made the union truly industrial in nature, including everyone in the companies concerned except office workers.

The bosses retaliated and provoked a third strike in July which lasted over a month. International Brotherhood of Teamsters' President Daniel Tobin, an arch-reactionary craft unionist, aided the bosses by starting a red-baiting campaign against the strike leadership. Despite the imposition of martial law by Farmer-Labor Governor Olson and the virtual exhaustion of the strikers in a war of attrition, the third strike solidly established the union and the legitimacy of the strike leadership. The bosses didn't dare try again to smash the former, and Tobin, though he kept trying, couldn't drive out the latter. It took a full scale war-crisis and government prosecution for "communism" to drive the Trotskyists from the leadership in the Minneapolis Teamsters in the 1940's. Before then, Minneapolis had become a highly-organized union town, and the Teamsters had spread throughout the Northwest. Farrell Dobbs' campaign to organize the over-the-road drivers provided the basis for transforming the Teamsters into an industrial union

Strong Words From the Fourth Marx Brother

The Stalinists immediately attempted to discredit the Trotskyists' role in the Minneapolis strikes. William F, Dunne, an old friend of Cannon and the one Dunne brother who had become a Stalinist, was selected by the Browder leadership of the CP to prove his loyalty by doing the "job" on the Trotskyists, including his brothers. This he did with a vengeance, even going to the point of likening his three brothers in Minneapolis to "the three Marx Bros." His articles reflected the ultra-left phase the Stalinists were only beginning to abandon. Calling the Trotskyists "a group of strikebreakers in the service of the bourgeoisie and the labor aristocracy," Dunne characterized the Minneapolis settlements as betrayals caused by cowardice, subservience to local AFL bureaucrats and Olson, and general covering up for the "fascist" "New Deal" on the part of the Trotskyists. Dunne claimed that the Trotskyists prevented the development of a full general strike, purposefully holding back the revolutionary thrust of the masses.

In following up these criticisms on the scene, the local Stalinists were severely handicapped by their total lack of any supporters directly involved in the strike, despite the fact that District 9 of the CP, covering Minneapolis, had been the third largest in the Party in 1928. The CP had completely isolated itself from the mass movement. As it attempted to present inflammatory criticism from the outside, the Trotskyists had to oppose physical assaults by angry workers on CP supporters on more than one occassion. Despite the fact that the union had an elected rank-and-file strike committee of 100, the Stalinists demanded "rank and file control" of the strike, and representation for their paper organizations on the strike committee. Only a short time later, when the CP dropped its characterization of the "New Deal" as fascist in favor of a popular-front alliance with Roosevelt and union bureaucrats, the Minneapolis CP lined up with the reactionary Tobin as the latter attempted to smash Local 574 by setting up a paper rival, "Local 500," and launching gangland thug attacks on 574 members.

NCLC Echoes "Third Period"

The CP's "Third Period" criticisms were eenoed recently, with a distinctly Marcusite crackpot twist, by the National Caucus of Labor Committees (NCLC) in its review of Dobbs' Teamster Rebellion (New Solidarity, 3l July-4 August 1972). "Dobbs sees only the military aspects of the strikes," says the NCLC:

"... He fails to understand that it was the role of outside 'forces supporting the Teamsters which was decisive--the embryonic never-realized United Front....
"The failure of the Trotskyists to adequately conceptualize the process of organizing the class-for-itself led them to constantly blunt the revolutionary dynamic of the situation."
These proponents of substitutionalism through fraudulent "united fronts" criticize the SWP for being bogged down in "militant trade unionism," to the point that they "aborted" the "development of a genuine mass strike movement." Magically, the incorporation of "outsiders" (who? the CP's paper unemployed organizations? farmers?) in the strike leadership on an equal basis with union members would have changed all this. The NCLC claims that the American Trotskyists ignored the "class-for-itself" model provided by Trotsky in his writings on the German crisis, "citing (incredibly!) Trotsky's "What Next?" (1932).

Hardly intending to renounce the qualitatively leading role of the employed proletariat as does the Labor Committee, Trotsky (who never used the "class-for-itself" hocus-pocus schematisms of the NCLC) pointed out in "What Next?" that simple trade-union strikes could accomplish nothing in the presence of mass unemployment unless the workers addressed themselves to this question, "drawing the unemployed into the struggle hand in hand with the employed." But the American Trotskyists understood this very well. They raised the question of unemployment in the Militant, fought for a shorter work week, and counterposed the united-front tactic to the CP's sectarianism in the unemployed movement. In Minneapolis, before the strikes, Trotskyist intervention to this effect in an unemployed conference was followed by a CP walkout.

Furthermore, the Minneapolis strikes were one of the most dramatic examples of broad-based organizing in American history. The leadership took meticulous care at all stages of the struggle to keep tabs on and mobilize support from other unions as well as women, petty bourgeois, professionals, farmers. The unemployed got particular attention. The Trotskyists successfully drew them into the strike struggle and attempted to organize them and support their struggles for better benefits and against grievances. After the strikes, a special unemployed organization, affiliated to the union, was constituted, and part of the leadership assigned to help run it. Relief benefits in Minneapolis were soon the best in the country, and the chances of unemployed workers being mobilized to scab on strikes were slim.

The strike leaders had a good sense of the mood of the workers and the relationship of class forces. If there were some aspects in which they erred slightly on the side of tactical conservatism, this was certainly not a major characteristic of their leadership. Far from "holding back" the struggle or consciousness of the workers, they advanced both to an entirely new level. Shachtman and Cannon came to Minneapolis to help put out a daily strike bulletin, the Organizer, which explained everything in terms of the basic conflict between worker and capitalist. Settlement terms were never overrated, but recognized clearly as temporary stopping points, involving necessary compromises, in the ongoing class struggle. Propaganda struggles were waged against backward attitudes, e.g., male chauvinism. The following point, written by Cannon, appeared in the Organizer for 18 August:

"We see the issue between capital and labor as an unceasing struggle between the class of exploited workers and the class of exploiting parasites. It is a war. What decides in this war, as in all others, is power. The exploiters are organized to grind us down into the dust. We must organize our class to fight back. And the women are half of the working class. Their interests are the same as ours and they are ready to fight for them. Therefore: organize them to take part in the class battle. This is the idea behind the wonderful organization of the Ladies Auxiliary, and its effective cooperation with the union in the struggle.
"Of course, Local 574 cannot claim to be the pioneer in grasping this idea and carrying it into practice. There have been numerous examples of attempts along this that did much to inspire us--belongs to the Progressive Miners of Illinois." [emphasis in original]
--Notebook of an Agitator

The General Strike Question

At the end of the May strike, the CP claimed that the Trotskyists reneged on their call for a city-wide general strike by accepting a settlement, thereby holding back the struggle. What the Stalinists ignored was that the main goal of the struggle up to that point--recognition of the union--was achieved. To press forward arbitrarily would have left the objectives unclear and been an adventurous risk of everything that had been gained. The Stalinists wanted a general strike against Olson. But in their ultra-left haste to denounce the Farmer-Labor governor as a "fascist," they forgot one small detail: the workers, who had voted him into power, had the illusion that he was on their side. Furthermore, he controlled the bulk of the AFL leadership through F-LP affiliation. An adventurous move at the wrong time could have isolated 574 and led to its destruction. As Trotsky pointed out in "What Next?" (merely one of many, many points the NCLC forgot to read):

"Even though Rosa Luxemburg overestimated the independent importance of the general strike in the question of power, she understood quite well that a general strike could not be declared arbitrarily, that it must be prepared for by the whole preceding course of the workers' movement, by the policies of the party and the trade unions." [emphasis in original]
The Trotskyists worked to expose Olson's real role, but they knew it would take events in the class struggle to do it. When Olson moved in troops in July, the workers thought he was protecting their interests and began cooperating with the troops. The leadership knew better, and at the risk of some initial unpopularity, the Organizer worked to expel these illusions. This was necessarily a slow process of education, but Olson himself speeded it up considerably by raiding the union headquarters and throwing the strike leaders in the stockade. The Organizer could then call for a "general protest strike" without the fear of isolation of the leadership at the hands of Olson and his AFL friends. The mere call for a general strike was sufficient to get the headquarters back and the leaders out of jail.

The worst the Trotskyists can be accused of with regard to Olson in the strike events is lack of prior warning, as to the role he would play, i.e., an over-adaptation at first to the backward consciousness of the workers. In their organizing drive before the May strike, the leadership built a mass meeting at which they demanded that Olson address the workers. This was correct, but building the meeting without simultaneous warnings as to Olson's real nature as the head of a section of the capitalist state was an opportunist tactical error.

"The organizing committee also started a pressure campaign to line up Governor Olson as a speaker at the meeting. This was done for two reasons: advance publicity listing the governor as a speaker would help in getting a big turnout for the meeting; and if Olson addressed the workers, he would have to go on record in support of the union campaign."
--Farrell Dobbs, Teamster Rebellion

Thus the organizers used Olson's name without, at the same time, attempting to expose him as a faker; thereby they helped create some of the illusions that plagued them. This error flowed in part from a theoretical misunderstanding of the Farmer-Labor Party--a bloc of two classes--as a working-class party (this will be taken up further in Part 3). That this error was subordinate within the general thrust of the Trotskyists' practice is indicated by the fact that they didn't hesitate to attack Olson in the heat of the crisis, even though it went against the stream to do so.

Hardly "holding back" the struggle, the leadership held out to the point of exhaustion of the ranks. At the end, the strike had become a war of "attrition, and there was a small but dangerous back-to-work trickle. Nevertheless, the main objectives were won. As Cannon pointed out to the Stalinists after the May strike, these "quack doctors whose patients always die," (referring to the record of disastrous, Stalinist-led ultra-left "strikes") could not point to a single example of newly-organized workers having achieved so much (Militant, 16 June 1934).

The Toledo Auto-Lite strike, which peaked after the May strike in Minneapolis, is held up as an "alternative" to Minneapolis by the NCLC on the absurd grounds that the revolutionary leaders were the heads of unemployed leagues, and had to be brought in from "outside" (New Solidarity, 16-20 October 1972). In fact, the only difference this made was that the Minneapolis strikes had better and more conscious advance planning, and afterwards the leadership, having worked inside the union from the beginning, was in a better position to thoroughly displace the craft-minded reactionaries. Both strikes used essentially the same revolutionary methods of mass struggle and achieved similar goals. The same can be said of the San Francisco waterfront strike, in which the Stalinists were involved. This strike was successful because the Stalinists opportunistically worked with leaders like Bridges who were inside the AFL longshoremen's union, which was technically "social-fascist" at the time! The Stalinists did have a dual union on the scene, but it was essentially a useless hindrance and a potentially dangerous divisive factor. When the police raided it along with the Wobblies, arresting hundreds, the workers on strike were not moved to defend it as their own.

Workers Party Formed, NCLC Notwithstanding

The NCLC complains that the Trotskyists spent too much time being militant trade unionists and thus failed to build "a significant revolutionary force in the Thirties." Holding up ex-preacher Muste's American Workers Party as conscious followers of Trotsky's German writings, the NCLC "forgets" that shortly after the Minneapolis and Toledo strikes, the AWP and the CLA fused to form the Workers Party! This fusion came about because the Trotskyfsts correctly saw the AWP as a leftward-moving centrist force and aggressively approached it, seeking to separate the sound, proletarian elements from the rootless petty-bourgeois dilettantes and other Marcus-like garbage which the AWP had picked up in its long history of unpolitical unemployed work. It was the American Trotskyists that supplied the better Musteites with a program, not the other way around. The work of the two groups in similar strikes hastened this process. Afterwards, the fused organization worked jointly to consolidate the earlier Toledo victory in the Chevrolet transmission strike in Toledo in 1935, which they almost succeeded in spreading throughout the GM empire. (This was the first successful GM strike, and was a vital precursor to the later organization of auto.)

The period of the 1933-1934 upsurge required exactly the kind of trade-union tactics Cannon advocated: a broad but principled united-front bloc around the key burning issues. In 1934, organization of the unorganized was such an issue. It clearly separated those willing to follow revolutionary leadership from the vast bulk of the trade-union bureaucracy of the time, and the Trotskyists were correct to bloc on this issue and struggle to lead successful organizing campaigns. Precisely this kind of activity in Minneapolis, Toledo and San Francisco threatened to solve the crisis of leadership in favor of the revolutionists, but the Trotskyists were too small to carry it through. The betrayals of the much larger Communist Party were responsible for the fact that when industrial workers were fully organized, reactionaries controlled their unions. The later blocs of the Stalinists with these CIO reactionaries--for the popular front with Roosevelt--has nothing at all in common with the Trotskyist united front in Minneapolis to achieve union recognition.

The Trotskyists' mistake (besides the theoretical misconception on the nature of the F-LP two-class party) was that they lacked different tactical weapons in their arsenal for different conditions and periods. An independent, Trotskyist-led caucus, expressing a full program of transitional demands for the unions, wasn't so important in 1934 as later, since in 1934 the Trotskyists were in a position to implement their most important demands in practice (although consciousness of the need for political caucuses might have gone hand-in-hand with greater consciousness of the need to make political warnings and criticisms in advance of the crisis, as in the case of Olson at the mass meeting). Later, however, when they weren't in a position to provide direct leadership of the class, the Trotskyists showed inflexibility. They never betrayed the workers as did the Stalinists, but they did miss opportunities and commit some opportunist errors through a policy of blocking too frequently and almost always working through united fronts many of which lacked the clarity of the blocs to organize the unorganized of 1934. Instead of emphasizing their program, they used organizational weakness as an excuse to over-concentrate on alliances around minimum demands.

Patxi Lopez jaunaren sineskeri antizientifikoak

"El lehendakari López posa en la portada de 'XLSemanal' con su pulsera Power Balance" irakurri zitekeen El Correo Español panfleto monarkikoan duela denbora bat. Eta baita hau ere:

"¿Cree López en los poderes de la ya conocida como timopulsera? ¿Qué será lo próximo? ¿Recurrir a adivinos para el diseño de la política económica? ¿Confiar en zahorís el trazado del tren de alta velocidad? ¿Abrir la sanidad pública a la imposición de manos?"

Baina orain Power Balance enpresakoak eskumutur horrek, ia mundu guztiak zekien bezala, ez duela botere miraritsurik eta dena dirua irabazteko iruzur bat zela onartzera behartuak izan dira... Iruzurra eta diruzaletasuna hain ongi egokitzen baitira lehendakari jaunaren esku odoleztatuen eskumuturrean!
Leire Pajín Iraola, oscurantista ministra de SALUD, con la fraudulenta y anticientífica Power Balance.

Moreno Cabrera hizkuntzalari marxistari elkarrizketa

Juan Carlos Moreno Cabrera (Madril, 1956) Filosofia eta Letretan doktorea da Madrilgo Unibertsitate Autonomoan. Hizkuntzalaritza Orokorreko katedraduna da. Soziolinguistika Klusterraren Jardunaldian bertan egin genion elkarrizketa eta hitzaldian bezala, euskaraz aritu zen.
Madrildarra zara eta zeuk aitortu izan duzu aurreiritziak izan dituzula hizkuntzekiko.
Orain ezin ditut aurreiritzi guztiak aipatu, zerrenda luzea baita, baina aipa ditzaket batzuk. Hizkuntza batzuk beste batzuk baino zailagoak edo errazagoak dira. Adibidez, ingelesa baino txinera zailagoa da. Beste bat: idatzizko hizkuntzak ahozko hizkuntzak baino aurreratuagoak dira. Ahozko hizkuntza dagokion idatzizko hizkuntzaren agerpen akatsduna da. Hizkuntzak dialektotan zatituta daude. Duela urte asko, ikasle nintzenean, irakasleak esan zidan andaluziera espainieraren dialektoa zela, baina orain badakit horrek ez duela zentzurik. Euskararen kasuan, adibidez, oso argi dago bizkaiera edo gipuzkera ez direla euskara batuaren dialektoak. Euskara batua euskalkietan oinarrituta dago, ez alderantziz. Hizkuntzalari guztiek hori badakite edo jakin beharko lukete.
Nola gainditu dituzu aurreiritzi horiek Madrildik begiratuta?
Hizkuntzalariek hizkuntzak zientifikoki ikertu behar dituzte. Gaurko hizkuntzalaritzaren aurkikuntza guztiak bateraezinak dira aipatu ditudan hizkuntzekiko aurreiritziekin. Benetako hizkuntzalari izan nahi badut, derrigorrez hizkuntzei buruzko aurreiritzien aurka borrokatu behar dut. Horregatik, nire kasuan, erraza da aurreiritziak gainditzea. Hizkuntzalaritzak lagundu dit edo lagundu digu aurreiritziak gainditzen.
Lankide batzuek ez dituztela gainditu esan izan duzu. Zergatik ez dituzte gainditu?
Kontuan hartu behar dugu zientzialariak gizartean bizi direla eta ideologia bat daukatela. Tamalez, sarritan, kontzeptu zientifikoak erabiltzen dituzte ideologia sustatzeko. Ekonomiaren kasuan oso garbi dago. Aditu batzuek ekonomiaren kontzeptuak erabiltzen dituzte kapitalismoaren ideologia sustatzeko, eta kapitalismo inperialista onartzeko eta justifikatzeko. Hizkuntzalaritzan ere bai. Adibidez, adituek hizkuntzalaritzaren kontzeptuak erabiltzen dituzte hizkuntza inperialismoa sustatzeko eta justifikatzeko. Batzuek, adibidez, ondokoa esan dute: ingelesa edo gaztelania munduan hedatuta daude hizkuntza errazak edo homogeneoak direlako. Hizkuntzalariok badakigu hori ez dela egia. Ingelesa eta gaztelania leku askotan inposatu egin dituzte. Hori dela-eta hizkuntza horiek ehun milioi hiztun baino gehiago dituzte. Zientzialariak zergatik daude ideologizatuta? Gizaki arruntak direlako. Ni gizaki arrunta naiz eta badaukat nire ideologia eta ez dit ardura esateak marxista naizela.
Zuk zenituen aurreiritziak pareka daitezke katedradun ez den madrildarraren aurrejuzguekin? Nola ikusten gaituzte euskaldunak, katalanak eta galiziarrak?
Madrilen espainiar hizkuntza nazionalismoa nagusitu da. Horrek esan nahi du gaztelania sustatzeko neurriak beti ontzat jotzen dituztela eta galiziera, euskara eta katalana sustatzekoak beti inposaketatzat. Dirudienez, Madrilen askok sinesten du Espainiako Estatuan gaztelania arriskuan dagoela, baina hori zentzugabekeria handia da. Alderantziz, esan daiteke galiziera, katalana eta euskara gaztelaniaren menpean daudela Espainian, eta batik bat Galizian, Euskal Herrian eta Katalunian.
Madrildik Euskal Herrira etorrita. Euskal hiztunon aurreiritziak aipatzerakoan hizkuntza estandarraren eta euskalki eta hizkeren orekaz hitz egin izan duzu.
Aurreiritziak oso hedatuta daude mendebaldeko gizarteetan. Beharrezkoa da aurreiritzi horiek eskolatik ezabatzea. Hizkuntza estandarrari dagokionez, beharrezkoa da gure gaurko gizartean, eta dudarik gabe, Euskal Herrian ere bai. Baina horrek ez du esan nahi euskalkiak edo gure hizkerak gutxietsi behar ditugunik. Alderantziz, euskara bizia da, hizkerak eta euskalkiak baitaude. Irlandan badago eskoletan irakasten duten irlandera estandarra, baina ia ez dago irlandar hizkerarik eta dialektorik. Hori dela-eta irlandera hilzorian dago. Aurreiritzi hori ezabatzeko gizartearen pentsamoldea aldatu behar dugu eta hori oso-oso zaila da.
Aurreiritziak, jarrerak eta jokaerak kontuan hartuta aurreiritziak direla aldatzen zailenak esan izan duzu.
Alkandora aldatzea oso erraza da, baina mentalitatea ezin dugu aldatu egun batetik bestera. Hezkuntza oso garrantzitsua da helburu hori lortzeko.

Eta nola eragiten dute aurreiritzi horiek jarreretan eta jokaeretan?

Aurreiritzi horiek hizkuntzarekiko jarrera eta jokaera txarrak eragiten dituzte eta elkarbizitza eragozten dute serioski.
Etorri zait gurasoa eta esan dit berak haurra A ereduan matrikulatu nahi duela eta ez diotela aukerarik ematen. Administrazioan leihatilakoari esan diot euskaldunarekin hitz egin nahi dudala eta sekulako aspertu aurpegia jarri dit. Uste dut arrazoia dudala baina ez dakit nola defendatu nire burua, ez dakit nola konbentzitu bestea.
Ulertzen dut zure egoera. Adibide argigarria da. Euskara hizkuntza ofiziala da Euskadin eta hitzaldian esan dudan bezala, kontuan hartu behar dugu ofizialtasuna ez dela Madrildik datorren inposaketa, Euskal Herriko erabaki demokratikoa baizik. Beraz, euskal hiritar guztiek euskaraz ulertu behintzat egin behar dute. Leihatilakoek ere bai. (2010)
Lenin sobre los derechos linguísticos en la dictadura del proletariado:

Juan Carlos Moreno Cabrera elebitasunari eta inperialismoari buruz

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Juan Carlos Moreno Cabrera: Bilingüismo e lingua común, Galizian eskainitako hitzaldia.
Ohar bat: Hizkuntzalaritzaren esparruan esaten duena oso kontuan hartzekoa da. Hala ere, akats bat egiten du inperialismo linguistikoaren barruan Txina sartzean. Inperialismoa, Leninek zioen bezala, kapitalismoaren fase gorena da, eta zentzu horretan Txinako Errepublika Popularra inperialismoarekin lotzeak ez du zentzurik, langile Estatu bat delako, nahiz-eta burokratikoki deformatua egon. Horrek ez du esan nahi agintari nazionalistek-stalinistek Txinako gutxiengo linguistikoak errespetatzen dituztenik.

Trotskyist Work in the Trade Unions (1/4)

Trotskyist Work in the Trade Unions

by C. Knox
Part 1 of 4

The Trotskyist movement has a proud tradition of struggle for the principles of Leninism, under difficult conditions and against heavy odds. In the United States, the core of the leadership which built the original Trotskyist organization (Communist League of America 1928-34) kept up the struggle for over three decades, before the vicissitudes of the Cold War anti-communist witchhunt finally caught up with them and caused their political degeneration and departure from Bolshevism in the early 1960's, The Spartacist League was born in the fight against the degeneration of the Trotskyist movement—-in the Socialist Workers Party—-and claims the tradition as its own.

This tradition includes the struggle of the Left Opposition against the bureaucratic degeneration of the USSR, the campaign for a workers united front against fascism in Germany, and the battle to build a new, Fourth International to provide an alternative proletarian leadership to the bankrupt Social Democrats and Stalinists.

As in the course of every preceding phase of the struggle for revolutionary socialism, however, it was inevitable that the Trotskyists would make mistakes. Correction of earlier mistakes, while in no way repudiating the earlier struggles and tradition, has been integral to the growth and political and theoretical armament of the movement. If one holds the early Lenin, for instance, up to the mirror of the whole body of Leninism--which incorporates the experience of the Russian Revolution and struggle to build the Communist International--one finds many errors and shortcomings. As James P. Cannon, communist leader and pioneer American Trotskyist, put it, discussing the development of the democratic-centralist vanguard party conception in 1944:

"If our party stands today on far higher ground that that occupied by the amorphous rebel workers' movement prior to the First World War--and that is indubitably the case--it is not due solely to the superiority of our program, but also to the consistent application in practice of the principles and methods of Bolshevik organization. The experience of a quarter of a century has convinced us over and over again that this is the right way, the only way, to build a revolutionary party....

"In politics nothing is more stupid, more infantile, than to retrace ground that had already been covered, to go back and start all over again as if nothing had happened and nothing has been learned."
--Letters from Prison

Just as Lenin had early shortcomings which reflected the social-democratic movement he was struggling to transcend, so the American Trotskyists made mistakes which reflected, in part, the arena of the degenerating Communist Party from which they emerged, and in part the national political environment in which they functioned. The history of Trotskyist work in the trade unions in the U.S. was in the main exemplary and includes such high points as the Minneapolis Teamster strike of 1934, which was a model of mass mobilization as well as the first instance of organizing of trucking on the lines of industrial unionism; and the SWP's struggles against the no-strike pledge and the War Labor Board in World War II. However, it also reveals consistent errors which must be studied and corrected by revolutionists today if the movement is to be armed against new dangers. While this history has yet to be fully researched and recorded, its main outlines can be critically examined.

CP Degeneration in the Twenties

Cannon, Shachtman, Abern and the other founders of American Trotskyism were recruited to Trotsky's Opposition suddenly, in 1928, after the issue of "Trotskyism" was considered closed in the American CP, and without having undergone the experience of a conscious struggle against the Stalinist degeneration of the party in the twenties. This degeneration had hopelessly corrupted the bulk of the leadership and cadre of the CP and demoralized, tamed or driven away most of the members.

The leadership of the party was firmly in the hands of Jay Lovestone, a hated, distrusted and cynical factionalist, who controlled the party through organizational manipulation and unprincipled political adaptationism. Identified with the Bukharinite right wing internationally, the Lovestone clique was steering the party in the direction of unbridled opportunism based on pessimism. In the trade unions, Lovestone's policy was to rely heavily on maneuvers at the top in the trade-union bureaucracy, coupled with political overtures to liberals in the form of pacifism, etc. Given the sharp decline of the AFL, this policy meant concentration on the privileged skilled trades, the small minority of the workers who were organized, and virtually no orientation to the masses of unskilled workers.

In the Stalinized Communist International (CI) of the late twenties, leadership of the national sections depended on being able to sense the winds of political change in Moscow and change one's line in time. The rampant factionalism, soon to be replaced by monolithism, had become completely unprincipled. Thus while Lovestone's right-wing opportunism fit his natural predilections and organizational methods, his faction was no more or less identified with any particular political program than was that of his chief opponent, William Z, Foster. Both sought power through adapting to the Comintern breezes, which had been blowing distinctly to the right since 1926, when Stalin blocked with Bukharin against Trotsky, Zinoviev and the ultra-lefts.

Cannon, although he too was influenced by the degeneration of the Communist International, as early as 1925 formed a third faction, the purpose of which was to fight for the liquidation of the programless factions and the building of a collective leadership. It was a somewhat demoralized Cannon who reluctantly attended the Sixth Congress of the CI in 1928, at which he accidently discovered a copy of Trotsky's critique of the draft program, and became convinced of Trotsky's analysis of the degeneration of the International as based on the interests of the national-bureaucratic elite in the USSR.

"The Right Danger in the American Party"

At the time of the Sixth CI Congress Cannon had formed a bloc (atemporary alliance, not a fusion of groups) with Foster's group on the basis of the document, "The Right Danger in the American Party." This document, like the bloc that produced it, was contradictory: it was both a principled condemnation of the gross opportunist errors of Lovestone, and a platform for an unprincipled attempt by the Fosterites to get control of the CP on the basis of what they sensed was a new left turn in the making in the Comintern.

Stalin was indeed preparing a new left turn, though he was not ready to break openly with Bukharin at the time of the Sixth Congress. As usual, the turn was forced on Stalin by circumstances which grew out of the previous line. In addition, the turn of 1928 was a plot to outflank the Left Opposition: first to expel Trotsky, then to appear to adopt his slogans. Many members of the opposition fell into the trap and capitulated to Stalin.

"The Right Danger" later reprinted in the Trotskyists' paper, the Militant, on which the Trotskyists continued to stand after their expulsion, reflected the signals being sent out from Moscow before the Sixth Congress, indicating the approach of the new "Third Period" turn. It attempted to use against Lovestone letters from the CI complaining about this and that, and pressure from the Red International of Labor Unions (RILU-CI trade-union arm) for more work to organize the unorganized into new unions. While correctly attacking the grossly opportunist and capitulatory blocs of Lovestone with various elements of the trade-union bureaucracy, the document tended to slip into the fallacious third period "united front from below" conception:

"The C.I. line against the United Front from the top with reactionary trade union, liberal and S.P. leaders, and for united front with the workers against them, applies with special emphasis in America."
--Militant, 15 December 1928

While the "Right Danger" thus contained some errors reflecting the developing new Stalinist zigzag (and was furthermore limited solely to the consideration of American questions), it was in the main correct. It was principled, from Cannon's point of view, on the need to form new unions in places where the AFL was decrepit or non-existent. While Foster was the extreme AFL-fetishist, the partisan of "boring from within," Cannon had broken with Foster in 1926 over the Passaic strike, which he felt was an example in which a new union should have been formed under Communist leadership.

After their summary expulsion from the CI which occurred on the basis of their views alone as soon as they solidarized with Trotsky, the Trotskyists attempted to make the most of Stalin's adoption of their slogans and continued to expose Lovestone, who was belatedly jumping on the third period bandwagon. The Trotskyists claimed Moscow's new slogans, "Against the Kulak! Against the Nepmen: Against the Bureaucrats!" as their own and took credit for the pressure leading to the CP's formation of new unions in mining, textiles and needle trades. These were the areas which the Trotskyists had felt were most ripe for the open formation of new unions, in conjunction with continued oppositional work in what was left of the old AFL unions, initial Trotskyist trade-union work centered on these unions, particularly mining in southern Illinois.

This position for new unions in areas abandoned and betrayed by the AFL bureaucrats was soon to be distorted by the Stalinists into a position of dual unions on principle, and opposition to work in the old unions. As consistently presented by the Trotskyist Opposition (both before and after it became "Trotskyist"), however, the "new unions" line conformed to both the objective situation and the CP's ability to intervene in the situation. The AFL unions had been on a rampage of class collaborationism, destruction of militancy and expulsion of "reds" throughout most of the twenties. The thrust of this reactionary drive by the bureaucracy was explicitly against the organization of the masses of unskilled workers into industrial unions, which alone could overcome craft myopia and accomplish the organization of the bulk of the working class. The result was that the AFL unions not only refused to organize new workers, but they shrank drastically, driving away new workers and anyone who wanted to organize them in the process. By the end of the twenties, the crisis of proletarian leadership took the form of the lack of leadership to organize the unorganized.

The duty of revolutionary leadership was, in fact, to fill this gap, and smash the AFL bureaucracy in the process. This condition continued into the thirties, until finally a section of the AFL bureaucracy moved to organize the mass production industries precisely out of fear that if the AFL leadership didn't do it, the reds would. This resulted in the setting up of the CIO which, while it entailed a bitter rivalry with the old AFL leadership, was primarily a matter of the formation of new unions for the unorganized industries rather than a case of rivals directly competing for the same workers with the old unions.

The Trotskyists proceeded from the concrete situation in each case, and advocated new unions only where the struggle to take over the old unions had clearly exhausted itself against the stone wall of bureaucratism. Mining was such a case. The rank and file in areas such as southern Illinois were so disgusted with the betrayals and utter disregard for democracy of the Lewis machine that the basis for a new union really displacing the old shell existed. Opposition leaders in the CP before 1928 had to fight Lovestone policies which were a capitulation not only to the slow moving "progressives" (Brophy, Hapgood, etc.) but to the Lewis machine itself! The formation of the National Miners Union (NMU) by the CP, in conjunction with anti-Lewis leaders, came too late and was further sabotaged by other CP errors of an adventurist character. Rank-and-file pressure caused the progressives to try again in 1932, however, and the CP went along reluctantly with setting up the Progressive Miners of America.

Despite the objective conditions favoring new unions, the CP's third period red unions were a disastrous betrayal. They were disasters because of the manner in which the CP attempted to form them: too late at first, in the case of mining and needle trades, but then increasingly too precipitously, without preparation. Strikes were called in the same manner, as an adventure on the part of a small handful, rather than on the basis of conscious preparation of the mass of the workers. Furthermore, the CP's policy was a betrayal, because it made a principle for the whole movement out of what should have been merely a tactic for particular circumstances. While the CP claimed throughout to be for continued opposition inside the old unions, the core of third period sectarianism made this impossible. The AFL leadership, as well as the Socialist Party, Trotskyists, Musteites, and all other tendencies, were denounced as "social-fascists" and otherwise not part of the workers movement in any sense. This made the united front, in which communists bloc with non-communist working-class leaders in order to expose them and advance the struggle at the same time--an essential part of communist work in the trade unions--impossible. While destroying its handful of new unions through sectarianism and adventurism, the Stalinists thus abandoned and sabotaged work in the old unions, which left the reactionary bureaucrats in control. This not only delayed the final introduction of industrial unions on a mass scale, but ensured that when such unions were formed, reactionaries would lead them.

From the moment at which the "new unions" position of the CP began to mushroom into the full-scale sectarianism of the third period, the Trotskyists fought to expose these errors and warn of the dangers. With tremendous prescience, they warned:

"The new 'theories' are attempting to rationalize the AFL out of existence as a federation of unions and abstractly preclude the possibility of its future expansion and growth in an organizational sense....
"The abandonment of... struggle [in the AFL] now taking place under the cover of high-sounding 'radicalism' will only prevent, the crystallization of an insurgent movement within the old unions and free the hands of the bureaucrats far more effective sabotage of the unew unions, for these two processes are bound together. The result will be to strengthen the effectiveness of the AFL bureaucracy as a part of the capitalist war machine."
--"Platform of the Communist Opposition," Militant, 15 February 1929

Trotskyist opposition to the sectarianism and adventurism of the third period, like the opposition to Lovestone's opportunism, was consciously linked to Cannon's earlier positions in the CP. As such, it carried forth certain errors which contributed to the mistakes of the later work of the Trotskyists in the trade unions.

In addition to condemning Lovestone's opportunism in the late twenties, the opposition groups (Foster and Cannon) condemned as sectarian his tendency to work exclusively through party fractions in the trade unions rather than building sections of the Trade Union Educational League (TUEL), the party's trade-union organization. This tendency on the part of the Lovestone group dated back to the 1924-25 left turn in the CI. In the U.S., the Ruthenberg/Lovestone faction (Ruthenberg died in 1927) used this turn for factional advantage against Foster, by substituting direct party work in the unions for building the TUEL, which was Foster's main organizational base. While Cannon had always been for a flexible policy on work in the unions, including building new unions when called for, he was also against the "narrow" conception of the TUEL, which was developed at this time, in which the latter was closely identified with the party. Instead, he was for broad united-front blocs, while maintaining the independence and freedom to criticize of the party:

"In 1925 the present Opposition conducted a struggle against the narrowing of the TUEL into a purely Communist body with a Communist program and for broadening it into a united front organization. This was one of the most progressive struggles in the history of the party."
--"Platform of the Opposition"

The "Platform" of 1929 then goes on to condemn both the abandonment of united-front tactics with the onset of the third period and earlier failures of both a left and right character: failure to build broad united-front movements where possible and failure to struggle for a leading role of the party within such blocs and movements (including warning that "progressive" bloc partners will betray, etc.).

The error which was buried in this polemic was that the TUEL was designed precisely to be the vehicle to bring the main outlines of the Communist program directly into the unions. It was a membership organization based on a program, not a bloc or united front. It carried out united fronts with other forces. Since these other forces, and much of the TUEL membership itself, had melted away or been driven out of the unions by 1924, the increased identification between the TUEL and the Communist Party engineered by Ruthenberg/Lovestone seemed to Cannon to be a sectarian error; rather, the party should be using the TUEL to seek new allies. Yet Cannon advocated the same watering down of the TUEL's political nature as did the degenerating Comintern in the late twenties. This watering down gave rise to a policy of blocs as a permanent strategy (the "left-center coalition") from 1927 on (see WV No. 22, 8 June 1973).

Cannon's position on trade-union work, then, called for principled united fronts and blocs around the immediate burning issues, together with vigorous party-building and maintenance of the party as an independent force, free to criticize its bloc partners, and always striving to play a leading role. Rather than being confused on the nature of the united front, which he was not, Cannon simply dismissed the TUEL, or the need for anything like the TUEL, as anything other than a vehicle for such blocs or united fronts. This left him with no conception of an organized pole for the recruitment of militants to the full party program for the trade unions, i.e., what the TUEL had been during its period of greatest success (and before the Stalinist degeneration of the CI set in). It is not surprising, then, that the Trotskyists never attempted to create anything like the TUEL, such as caucuses based on the Trotskyist Transitional Program, in the course of their trade-union work. What caucuses they did create had the character of temporary blocs, usually based on immediate, trade-union issues. This meant that the party itself, able to function openly only outside the unions, was the only organized pole for recruitment to the full program.

That the problems with this approach didn't become manifest until much later, after the rise of the CIO, was due primarily to the nature of the period, which called above all for a united front for the organization of the unorganized into industrial unions. This called for capable revolutionary trade-union organizing, which the Trotskyists, particularly the experienced militants of Minneapolis and Cannon himself, were prepared to conduct. This perspective led the Trotskyists into some of the Stalinist dual unions, the progressives' PMA, and leadership of the historic Minneapolis truck drivers' strikes of 1934.

The Minneapolis strikes stand to this day as a model of revolutionary trade-union organizing. Together with the San Francisco and Toledo general strikes of the same year, the Minneapolis strikes were an important precursor to the organization of all mass production workers along industrial lines.

1936ko gerra zibila: Milizianoak

"CNT, FAI, UHP, Viva la república, POUM milicias Trotski, leed POUM, Hasta el fin, Viva Trotski"

Lezioni d'Ottobre

"Senza un partito, in mancanza di un partito, sopra la testa di un partito, o con un sostituto di un partito, la rivoluzione proletaria non può vincere" (Trotsky)

Urtarrilaren 27an greba orokorra Hego Euskal Herrian

27 de enero huelga general en Hegoalde

Frentepopulistas en acción: Santiago Carrillo

Santiago Carrillo, esquirol antitrotskista.
Santiago Carrillo, briseur de grève antitrotskyste.
Santiago Carrillo, eskirol antitrotskista.

Txiki Benegas...

Txiki Benegas PsoE-GAL alderdiko buruzagietako bat "Nazional autonomi estatutoa-Autogobernua-Autodeterminazioa" lema duen pankarta eramaten. Ai ene!

El Triunfo del Bolchevismo (Li Dazhao, 1918)

Li Dazhao, dirigente del Movimiento del 4 de Mayo, fundador del Partido Comunista de China, ejecutado por ‘señores de la guerra’ en 1927.

Los bolcheviki…protestaron enérgicamente y proclamaron que la guerra actual es una guerra del Zar, del Kaiser, de reyes y emperadores, que es una guerra de gobiernos capitalistas, pero no es su guerra. La suya es la guerra de clases, una guerra de todo el proletariado y de los plebeyos contra los capitalistas del mundo…

En su libro, ‘El bolchevismo y la paz mundial’, Trotsky escribe: “En esta nueva era revolucionaria, se creará una nueva organización por métodos proletarios socialistas sin límites. La nueva organización será tan grande como la nueva tarea. Entre el demencial estruendo del cañón, el derrumbe de los templos y los reliquiarios, y el frenético trompetazo de las canciones patrioteras de los lobos capitalistas, debemos ser los primeros en emprender esta nueva tarea. En medio de esta infernal música de la muerte, debemos mantener la claridad de nuestras mentes, comprendiendo y dándonos cuenta de que la nuestra será la sola y única fuerza creadora del futuro…”

De esta cita se desprende claramente que Trotsky sostiene que la revolución rusa servirá como la mecha para la revolución mundial. La revolución rusa es tan sólo una de las revoluciones del mundo; le seguirán numerosas revoluciones de otros pueblos…

La revolución en Rusia es solamente la primera hoja caída que advierte al mundo del acercamiento del otoño. Aunque la palabra “bolchevismo” fue creada por los rusos, se puede considerar al espíritu que encarna como el de un despertar común en el corazón de cada individuo en la humanidad del siglo XX. El triunfo del bolchevismo significa entonces el triunfo del espíritu del despertar común en el corazón de todo individuo en la humanidad del siglo XX.
—Li Dazhao (Li Ta-chao), “El triunfo del bolchevismo” (noviembre de 1918)

LLL demonstration 2011

Lenin Liebknecht Luxemburg demonstration 2011, Berlin.