Wednesday, March 30, 2011

*From The Archives-The Struggle To Win The Youth To The Fight For Our Communist Future-Leninism vs. Stalinism On The United Front: What Strategy To Fight Fascism? (1980)

Markin comment:

One of the declared purposes of this space is to draw the lessons of our left-wing past here in America and internationally, especially from the pro-communist wing. To that end I have made commentaries and provided archival works in order to help draw those lessons for today’s left-wing activists to learn, or at least ponder over. More importantly, for the long haul, to help educate today’s youth in the struggle for our common communist future. That is no small task or easy task given the differences of generations; differences of political milieus worked in; differences of social structure to work around; and, increasingly more important, the differences in appreciation of technological advances, and their uses.

There is no question that back in my youth I could have used, desperately used, many of the archival materials available today. When I developed political consciousness very early on, albeit liberal political consciousness, I could have used this material as I knew, I knew deep inside my heart and mind, that a junior Cold War liberal of the American For Democratic Action (ADA) stripe was not the end of my leftward political trajectory. More importantly, I could have used a socialist or communist youth organization to help me articulate the doubts I had about the virtues of liberal capitalism and be recruited to a more left-wing world view. As it was I spent far too long in the throes of the left-liberal/soft social-democratic milieu where I was dying politically. A group like the Young Communist League (W.E.B. Dubois Clubs in those days), the Young People’s Socialist League, or the Young Socialist Alliance representing the youth organizations of the American Communist Party, American Socialist Party and the Socialist Workers Party (U.S.) respectively would have saved much wasted time and energy. I knew they were around but not in my area.

The archival material to be used in this series is weighted heavily toward the youth movements of the early American Communist Party and the Socialist Workers Party (U.S). For more recent material I have relied on material from the Spartacus Youth Clubs, the youth group of the Spartacist League (U.S.), both because they are more readily available to me and because, and this should give cause for pause, there are not many other non-CP, non-SWP youth groups around. As I gather more material from other youth sources I will place them in this series.

Finally I would like to finish up with the preamble to the Spartacist Youth Club’s What We Fight For statement of purpose:

"The Spartacus Youth Clubs intervene into social struggles armed with the revolutionary internationalist program of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Trotsky. We work to mobilize youth in struggle as partisans of the working class, championing the liberation of black people, women and all the oppressed. The SYCs fight to win youth to the perspective of building the Leninist vanguard party that will lead the working class in socialist revolution, laying the basis for a world free of capitalist exploitation and imperialist slaughter."

This seems to me be somewhere in the right direction for what a Bolshevik youth group should be doing these days; a proving ground to become professional revolutionaries with enough wiggle room to learn from their mistakes, and successes. More later.
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Markin comment on this article:

This article is a rather succinct description of the differences between the early Communist International Lenin-Trotsky-derived united front tactic and the later Stalin—derived popular front strategy. In practice, the difference between pushing the international proletarian struggle forward and acting primarily as agents for Stalinized Soviet foreign policy- against revolution, in short. I have, periodically addressed the question of the united front tactic and have placed a number of previous articles from historic sources, and commentaries on those historic sources so I will only address the united front question as it applies to the struggle against fascism. Not because the tactic works differently on that question but rather that it takes added urgency to try to create a united front against our mortal enemies on the streets when they raise their heads.

In the best of situations, of course, a mass communist party with authority in the working class and few social-democratic opponents would not need to use the united front, or its use would not be as pressing. Call the demonstration or other action, bring out your membership, and see who else shows up. And a lot of others will, as the experience of the Bolshevik revolution demonstrated when the deal when down for real. For the rest of us, as a sign of our individual organizational weaknesses (or in a case when there is more than one authoritative working class organization with a mass following) the united front is the supreme tactic to get a mass to come out in defense of their organizations. We now know, if previous generations didn’t know or chose not to know, that is what it comes to.

I, and not I alone, have always argued that we need to “nip the fascists in the bud” whenever they ill-advisedly try to show themselves on the streets for some “celebration.” We have no other recourse than to try to create the united front under the traditional practice of marching separately (under your own banners and with your own propaganda) and striking together (united on this particular issue). As this article argues that is easier said that done with the political consciousness at the level it is (or was, since this is a 1980s article but, if anything, it is even lower these days-particularly on the issues of reliance on the state to "ban the fascists" and on “education” (the debate issue) rather than confrontation. On this question, however, there is nothing to debate, there is no will on the part of the state to break these para-military thugs up and we are left to cobble on own resources for a united front. By any means necessary.
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From Young Spartacus, October 1980-Leninism vs. Stalinism On The United Front: What Strategy To Fight Fascism?


We publish below a letter Young Spartacus received in June in response to our polemic against the Communist Workers Party (CWP) last May on the strategy to fight fascism and YSp's reply.

June 17, 1980 Los Angeles
Young Spartacus:

I enjoyed your discussion of Dimitrov ["CWP Zigzags Between Third Period' and Popular Front," Young Spartacus No. 82, May 1980] and its particular relevance to the fight against fascist groups in this country. But, if you want to discuss Dimitrov, I think you should complete the discussion.
It is true that his views were presented at the CPSU's 7th Party Congress in 1935. But he only represented one half of a debate! True, it was the winning side, but the alternative position of a "united working class front" of different elements calling for dictatorship of the proletariat (The only real alternative to Dimitrov!) was written by R. Palme Dutt in his Fascism and Socialist Revolution [1934-35]. In this volume he clearly and brilliantly outlines the linkages of the failures of capitalism to inter-imperialist contradictions on one side and the failures of the social democrats on the other. The line which you are taking is diluted Dutt, so why not go read him and draw him into the discussion. Another Marxist discussion from the period which is also very good is Daniel Guerin's Fascism and Big Business. He is stronger than Dutt in explaining how fascist ideology and organization work, but weaker in explaining the causes of fascism within the contradictions of capitalism and imperialism.

Several other points remain, however:
1 By your definitions Dutt was aStalinist. He was the head of the-British CP. How can this be?

2. If you want to clearly present apolitical alternative to the latter day
Dimitrovs, you must work out a few bugs in your line. To begin, you are
correct in criticizing the CWP's [Communist Workers Party] reliance on the
state, but what about your reliance onbourgeois unions and petty-bourgeois
nationalist organizations? The alternative to Dimitrov is not going to liberal organizations, whether labor unions or minority organizations, as an alternative to the large bourgeoisie. This is really an extension of Dimitrov, because you are saying there are some good factions of the bourgeoisie—in the person of union leaders and minority leaders. If you are to make a clean break with Dimitrov, as you suggest, you must make a clean break with the bourgeoisie and their immediate (and politically dependent) representatives.

3. The alternative is to turn directly to people, but not to liberal organizations in which they may have been drawn in.Furthermore, if the basis of this united front from below (qualitatively different
than alliances with petty bourgeois organizations) is simply opposition to
fascism (under some old CP slogan, such as the preservation of democratic
rights) you have also replicated Dimitrov, not repudiated him. The clear
repudiation, again as outlined by Dutt,is to call for a united front from below which is committed to the dictatorship of the proletariat.

In other words, if the basis for the united front is the watering down of a communist line to draw in the good (petty) bourgeoisie—as your organization seems to be doing—you have unwittingly committed the errors which you criticize the CWP of, that is exhuming Dimitrov. It is true they do it deliberately, and you appear to do it unwittingly, but the result is the same.

4. A final point needs to be clarified, and this is the debate between Dimitrov and Dutt which you partially analyzed has already been brought up to the attention of the left. In 1971 PL Magazine carefully followed through
the discussion, and pointed out the long list of theoretical and practical errors generated by the International Communist Movement turning to the Dimitrov formulation and abandoning the concept of the united front from below. How is it that one of the groups you decry as Stalinist figured out what your [organization] recently became aware of nine years earlier and with greater theoretical and practical precision? Is this organization really not Stalinist (and Dutt too for that matter), or does
Stalinism not automatically lead to Dimitrovism?

I realize this is a long letter but I would like your reactions to some of the points I have raised, especially about how your line does not represent a clear break with Dimitrov.

Rick Platkin

Young Spartacus replies: Platkin raises once again (ostensibly from the "left")the question of Stalinism versus Trotskyism on the united front. While his slightly crackpot letter contains a number of historical inaccuracies and political absurdities and could be easily dismissed, it provides an opportunity for Young Spartacus to review the elementary Leninist tactic of the united front. Particularly in the aftermath of our successful anti-fascist mobilizations in Detroit and San Francisco, we are pleased to discuss the history of the united front and its particular application to the American labor movement in the fight against the increasingly visible fascist movement.

Without specifically referring to the April 19 Committee Against Nazis (ANCAN) demonstration in San Francisco, called to combat a threatened "celebration" of Hitler's birthday by the Bay Area fascists, Platkin argues that this mobilization—heavily built and organized by the SL/SYL—was inherently opportunist. He accuses us of "exhuming Dimitrov." The reason? Because in addition to the communist SL/SYL, 35 elected trade-union officials as well as nine local unions endorsed and actively built the ANCAN rally along with a number of community, minority, gay and civil rights organizations. For the first time in decades, a genuine united-front action of socialists and organized labor defended the rights of the working class and oppressed, independent of and against the efforts of the bourgeois state and politicians.

No gang of Nazis went goosestepping into San Francisco's Civic Center to celebrate Hitler's birthday and not because the police canceled their permit or the Board of Supervisors passed resolutions against the little storm-troopers. As the endorsement list for the ANCAN rally steadily grew, the cops announced that they could not guarantee the safety of the Nazi scum. The Nazis failed to show because thousands of unionists, minorities and socialists intended to sweep them off the streets. Ever since the April 19 rally, the fake-lefts have been falling all over themselves to explain away the undeniable success of the ANCAN mobilization.

Based on the simple proposition that a massive mobilization of the labor movement and its allies could stop the Nazis, the ANCAN rally was a victory and a vindication of the Leninist tactic of the united front. In contrast the Maoist-dominated Anti-Klan/Nazi Coalition held a little sectarian rally, which attracted 350, a quarter mile away from the site of the proposed Nazi Hitlerfest. Fundamentally pessimistic about the ability of the working class to turn out in force to stop the brownshirts, the Maoist-dominated coalition turned instead to the strikebreaking Democrats in City Hall. Their "strategy" hinged on pressuring Mayor Feinstein and the Board of Supervisors to revoke the Nazis' permit and pass a resolution condemning the Hitler-lovers. But the Maoists found that there were very few bourgeois politicians interested in building a mass demonstration against fascism. Even after they pledged not to lay a finger on the Nazis, the Anti-Klan/ Nazi Coalition could only dig up one black councilman from Oakland. The opportunists, albeit empty-handed, were a quarter mile away from the action.
Platkin accuses the SL/SYL of "watering down... a communist line to draw in the good (petty) bourgeoisie" ind counterposes turning directly to the 'people." In doing so, he echoes Progressive Labor's (PL) rejection of the united front in Road to Revolution III:

"We reject the concept of a united front with the bosses. We reject the concept of a united front with Trotskyists and the herd of various fakes in the left "We believe in a united front from below that takes the form of a left-center coalition."

—PL, November 1971

Platkin speaks approvingly of the "theoretical and practical precision" of the sometime left-sounding Stalinists of Progressive Labor and is in fact a longtime supporter of their sub-reformist front group, the Committee Against Racism (CAR). It is worth noting that PL also came unglued by the success of the ANCAN demo. Before the April 19 rally PL—true to form—denounced both ANCAN and the Maoist-led splinter coalition as "calls for a pacifist counter-demonstration [which] amount to calling for 'peace to the Nazis'." After the fact, in an article entitled "1500 Protest Against Nazis" (Challenge, 30 April) PL waxed eloquent about the Civic Center rally participants who were "just itching for the Nazis to show their faces," proving that when it's opportune PL will even tail the Trotskyist SL/ S YL. (Naturally, they omit any mention of the SL/SYL's central role in building the ANCAN rally.)

The United Front— A Leninist Tactic

The united front is a tactic employed by the vanguard party to unite the working class for practical action and to win the allegiance of non-communist workers from the reformists, centrists, labor bureaucrats and at times the bourgeois and petty-bourgeois nationalists. We wrote in "On the United Front":

"The UF can only be a reality during periods of social struggle, when the need for sharp class battles makes class unity a burning objective necessity that shakes the ranks of the non-communist workers organizations from their le¬thargy and day-to-day humdrum or¬ganizational parochialism, and places strongly before them the need for class unity that transcends their particular organizations..."

— Young Communist Bulletin No. 3, p. 8

There is a reason that the united front became a central question at the Third Congress of the Communist International in 1922. At the time of the First World Congress in 1919 it was expected that the working-class offensive in the wake of the First World War would lead to the direct overthrow of the bourgeoisie under Communist leadership. The need for the united front tactic flowed from the fact that the majority of workers in most countries had gone through the postwar revolutionary upsurge retaining their allegiance to the reformist leaderships of the trade unions and the social-democratic parties. At the same time, in the wake of the receding revolutionary tide, the bourgeoisie went on the offensive. The capitalist offensive was forcing even the reformist-led organizations into partial and defensive struggles for their lives, simply to maintain the organizational gains and standard of living they had won in the past. This situation placed on the agenda the need for a united workers front.

The Third World Congress had two tasks before it: 1) to cleanse the working class, including the ranks of the Communist parties, of all reformist and centrist elements who did not want to struggle; and 2) to learn the art of struggle, and master revolutionary tactics and strategy. Much of the ideological struggle at the Third Congress was directed against the "Lefts"—those whose revolutionary impatience caused them to lose sight of the most important preparatory and preliminary tasks of the party. The Bolsheviks counseled the young communist "Lefts" at the Congress: "Comrades, we desire not only heroic struggle, we desire first of all victory." Trotsky explained:

"Does the united front extend only to the working masses or does it also include the opportunist leaders? "The very posing of this question is a product of misunderstanding. "If we were able to unite the working masses around our own banner or around our practical immediate slogans, and skip over reformist organizations, whether party or trade union, that would of course be the best thing in the world. But then the very question of the united front would not exist in its present form

"It is possible to see in this a rapprochement with the reformists only
from the standpoint of a journalist who believes that he rids himself of refor¬mism by ritualistically criticizing it without ever leaving his editorial office but who is fearful of clashing with the reformists before the eyes of the working masses and giving the latter an opportunity to appraise the Communist and the reformist on the equal plane of the mass struggle.

"Behind this seemingly revolutionary fear of 'rapprochement' there really lurks a political passivity which seeks to perpetuate an order of things wherein the Communists and the reformists each retain their own rigidly demarcated spheres of influence, their own audiences at meetings, their own press, and all this together creates an illusion of serious political struggle."

—"On the United Front," The First Five Years of the Communist International, Vol. 2

Platkin argues, "If you are to make a clean break with Dimitrov, as you suggest, you must make a clean break with the bourgeoisie and their immediate (and politically dependent) representatives." Why should Trotskyists make a "break" with Dimitrov? Unlike the Stalinists, we never supported his class-collaborationist line in the first place. And what does Dimitrov have to do with the Leninist united front tactic? Nothing! Dimitrov supplied the theoretical justification not for the united front but for class-collaborationist political blocs with the bourgeoisie which came to be known as popular fronts. At the Seventh Congress of the Stalinized Comintern in 1935, (not the CPSU's Seventh Party Congress as Platkin says) Dimitrov was quite explicit:

"Now the toiling masses in a number of capitalist countries are faced with the necessity of making a definite choice, and of making it today, not between proletarian dictatorship and bourgeois democracy, but between bourgeois democracy and fascism."

For Platkin, included in the category of "immediate representatives" of the bourgeoisie are the trade unions. Caught in the stranglehold of the pro-capitalist labor bureaucracy, the trade unions are nonetheless workers organizations. And in the United States, they are the only mass organizations of the proletariat. To insist that revolutionaries never conclude united front blocs for action with the trade unions is simply a recipe for sealing off commu¬nists from the organized working class. We refer our readers to Trotsky's polemic against the sectarian policies of Stalin's "Third Period" in What Next? Trotsky noted that "just as the trade union is the rudimentary form of the united front in the economic struggle, so the soviet is the highest form of the united front under the conditions in which the proletariat enters the epoch of fighting for power." He goes on to argue that "the refusal by the Communist Party to make arrangements and take joint action with other parties within the working class means nothing else but the refusal to create Soviets" (emphasis in original in both quotes).

Moreover, Platkin's attitude toward the unions is totally at variance with the practice of Progressive Labor which he upholds as the real "left" alternative to Dimitrov. In the history of the commu¬nist movement, there are and have been ultra-left and anarchist organizations which refused on principle to work in the unions, but PL is not one of them. Far from a "leftist" policy, PL's left-center coalitionism in the unions has led to the worst kind of sub-reformist economism and support to "lesser evil" bureaucrats in the United Auto Workers, Communications Workers, AFSCME and other unions.

Cloaked in the phraseology of revolutionary intransigence, blanket opposi¬tion to the united front actually represents political passivity, conservatism and a lack of revolutionary will. "No united front with the reformists" is simply an inverted non-aggression pact with the reformists, an implicit agree¬ment not to fight them on their own turf. Far from such a pact, the united front implies a sharpening of the political struggle with the reformist misleaders. For instance, the unions, black organizations, Chicano, Jewish and gay groups all had a vital interest in stopping the fascist filth. The proposal of a concrete joint action to these organizations gave their respective leaderships the choice of either openly opposing the action or appearing on the same platform with the communists. The vanguard party must retain full freedom to criticize its temporary allies in the united front, something that the Spartacist League took full advantage of on April 19. The dual nature of the united front is captured in the slogan, "March separately, strike together," and the party must be ready to break with the reformists and centrists when they become a brake on the struggle.

Such was the case in Detroit on November 10. The SL and militant auto workers attempted to mobilize the powerful UAW to stop a planned Klan march in Detroit, a march called to "celebrate" the Greensboro massacre. Criminally, the UAW tops refused tc put the weight of the Detroit labor movement behind the anti-Klan rally The "liberal" black mayor, Coleman Young, threatened to arrest any demonstrators—Klan or anti-Klan. We were de facto forced into a united front "from below" under these circumstance and took the call for the demonstration directly to the factory gates an working-class neighborhoods. The result was a rally composed of the "hard core" of largely black, advanced workers willing to defy the criminal inaction of the UAW tops and stand up to a hostile city government and the possibil¬ity of arrest. It was critical that the Klan be stopped in the labor/black town of Detroit. And they were stopped despite the sabotage of the union bureaucrats— a victory for the entire working class and oppressed. However, we did not choose to limit the strength of the anti-Klan mobilization, the only such action to occur in the wake of Greensboro, to a hard core of 500. Much more powerful would have been thousands-strong contingents from the unions putting the Klan and City Hall on notice that "The Klan Won't Ride in the Motor City!"

"The United Front from Below"— History of Betrayal

Platkin fails to address the fact that the revolutionary-sounding "united front from below" has a history: it was the policy of the Stalinized Comintern from 1928 to 1935, the "Third Period." Is Platkin really unaware of the results? The triumph of Hitler and the decimation of the German proletariat were a world historic defeat for the working class.
The policies of the "Third Period" followed the cumulative failures of Stalin's 1924-27 policies of conciliating the colonial bourgeoisie and the trade-union reformists abroad as well as the kulaks at home. During this period, Lenin's united front tactic was degraded to an instrument for class collaboration and counterrevolution. In China, Stalin's "united front" with the bourgeois-nationalist Kuomintang (KMT), resulting in the complete liquidation of the Chinese Communist Party, led to the massacre of tens of thousands of Communist and working-class militants in the Shanghai insurrection of 1927 and killed for two decades the possibility of anti-capitalist revolution in China. In Britain, Stalin allied with the British trade-union bureaucrats in the "Anglo-Russian Trade Union Unity Committee." The Comintern did not see this as a temporary alliance with British trade-union leaders but as a long-lasting co¬partnership. This alliance was preserved through the betrayals of the 1926 General Strike and the miners strike, lending the prestige of the Bolshevik Revolution arid Communism to the strikebreaking Trades Union Congress tops.

From these disasters of Stalin's rightist course were born the ultra-left policies of the 'Third Period." In Germany, Stalin proclaimed....(missing part) .. the reformist Social Democratic Party (SPD) to be "social fascist" and thus eliminated any possibility of an SPD-KPD (German Communist Party) united front against Hitler's increasingly strong forces. Of course, it's quite true that SPD was complicit in the murders of Liebknecht and Rosa Luxembourg. In 1929 the Social Democrat Zoergeibel drowned the KPD May Day march in blood. At every step on Hitler's road to power the reformists capitulated rather than fight.

Trotsky called the Social Democratic bureaucracy the "rottenest portion of putrefying capitalist Europe." But despite the counterrevolutionary be¬trayals of the leadership of the SPD, the Social Democrats still led millions of workers and within certain limits were constrained to reckon with their deluded proletarian constituency as well as with their bourgeois masters. The victory of fascism would mean the annihilation of the organizations of Social Democracy. While the SPD leaders did not want to fight, for the Social Democratic ranks it was a matter of life and death. The KPD's refusal to utilize this contradiction was an act of gross stupidity and treachery. The united front would set class against class, defending the workers' organizations against the stormtroopers and at the same time expose in action the hesitations, vacillations and abhorrence of socialist revolution that lie at the heart of Social Democracy. Trotsky insisted that in the war against fascism the Communists must be ready to conclude practical military alliances with the devil and his grandmother, even with 'Noske and Zoergeibel.

But the Stalinists continued to follow their sectarian-defeatist logic, captured in the slogan "After Hitler—Us." Millions of workers organized in the SPD and KPD were ready and eager to crush the Nazis, but Hitler came to power without a shot being fired because of the policies of the Stalinist "Third Period."

The Popular Front

At the end of 1933, with the triumph of Hitler and the renewed threat of imperialist attack, the panic-stricken Stalinist bureaucracy zigzagged once again. In a desperate search for allies, the Comintern sought to ingratiate itself with the "democratic" imperialist bourgeoisies through calculated contain¬ment of revolutionary proletarian movements in Europe. Where a year before the Stalinists had refused blocs with bourgeois workers parties, they were now prepared to make alliances with the bourgeoisie itself, including participation in capitalist governments. Enter Dimitrov, who provided the justification for these treacherous class-collaborationist political blocs at the expense of proletarian revolution under the catch phrase "the united front against fascism."

Platkin claims that the positions of R. Palme Dutt were the only real alternative to the Dimitrov/Stalin line. From the 1920s through the mid-1960s denounced those who declared the "existing bourgeois dictatorship" to be a "'lesser evil' than the victory of Fascism," but to see this as a polemic against Dimitrov is absurd. The change in the Comintern's line was so abrupt and unevenly implemented that initially even some of the most loyal Stalinist hacks were caught marching out of step. Dutt spoke in favor of Dimitrov's resolution at the Seventh World Congress and was for the first time elected as a candidate member of the Executive Committee of the Comintern. How can Dutt be called a Stalinist? In addition to his grandiloquent praise for Stalin himself ("the genius and will of Stalin, the architect of the rising world of free humanity," etc., etc.) suffice it to say that for 40 years he popularized and promoted every twist and turn of Moscow's line in the pages of Labour Monthly.

There is an organic unity between the methodology of the "Third Period" and the popular front. At bottom both represent a lack of confidence in the proletariat's ability to conquer state power. During the "Third Period" the Stalinists abstained from fighting class collaborationism; with the popular front policy they simply embraced it. The net result was the same.

Who opposed the Dimitrov/Stalin line which led to bloody defeat for the working class in Spain and headed off a pre-revolutionary situation in France during the 1930s? Only the Trotskyists. To the popular front, the Trotskyists counterposed a working-class united front to smash the fascists. Instead of depending on the republican generals and the police, the Trotskyists called for workers militias based on the trade unions.

This Trotskyist tradition is today embodied in the program of the Spartacist League/SYL. Against the "ban the Klan" reformism of the Stalinists, the revolting defense of "free speech for fascists" of the social democratic SWP, and the episodically substitutionist antics of PL/CAR and the CWP we have successfully fought for labor/black mobilizations to smash the fascist scum. No other left organization in the U.S. can claim to have responded to the Greensboro massacre by mobilizing black and white trade unionists against the KKK as we did in Detroit; nor has anyone but the SL/SYL put forward and implemented the mass mobilization of the organized labor movement against the fascist threat as occurred in the ANCAN demonstration. The basis for Leninist principles and tactics, as proven by the history of the world working class, is what works.
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A cattle dealer once drove some bulls to the slaughterhouse. And the butcher came nigh with his sharp knife.

"Let us close ranks and jack up this executioner on our horns," suggested one of the bulls.

"If you please, in what way is the butcher any worse than the dealer who drove us hither with his cudgel?" replied the bulls, who had received their political education in Manuilsky's institute.

"But we shall be able to attend to the dealer as well afterwards!"

"Nothing doing," replied the bulls, firm in their principles, to the counselor. "You are trying to shield our enemies from the left; you are a social-butcher yourself."

And they refused to close ranks.

—from Aesop's Fables

—Leon Trotsky, "What Next? Vital Questions for the German Proletariat," The Struggle Against Fascism in Germany, 1932

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