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Albert Parker

On Guard Against
the Stalinist Provocateurs!

Whole Labor Movement Must Be Alert to Oppose Stalinist Moves
to Incite Lynch Terror Against Their Working Class Opponents

(3 January 1942)

From The Militant, Vol 6 No. 1, 3 January 1942, p. 4.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

The Jewish Morning Journal, a newspaper published in New York, on Dec. 24 printed the following account of the connection between the Stalinists and the attacks of the most reactionary forces in Britain on the revolutionists:

“Since the former Ambassador to Russia, Joseph E. Davies, came out with his well-known attack accusing the late Leon Trotsky of being in alliance with Japan and Germany to attack the Soviet Union, several of the more reactionary newspapers in London have begun a strong attack against the English Trotskyists.

“The Sunday Dispatch, one of the most reactionary newspapers in the country, which is also not free from anti-Semitism and formerly carried on a scurrilous campaign against the Communists, has now come out with a demand to intern all the Trotskyists because they are Stalin’s enemies ahnd hidden friends of Hitler’s.”

Justified Suspicion

The Morning Journal is not a radical paper; as a matter of fact it is probably the most conservative of the Jewish dailies. Yet it cannot help feeling suspicious of the motives of the Sunday Dispatch in its attacks on the Trotskyists. For the Dispatch, part of the Tory Rothermere chain, is truly one of the most reactionary newspapers in Britain, long noted for its attacks on the labor movement and the Jewish people.

But the Morning Journal tells only part of the story. The Stalinists play a much more direct and recent part in these provocations than the mere authorship of the slanders retailed secondhand now by capitalist spokesmen such as Davies and Harry Hopkins.

Not only do the Stalinists provide the reactionaries with lies about the Trotskyists from the Moscow frameup trials of 1935-37, but they also manufacture new lies and incitements for use by the reactionaries today.

The Sunday Dispatch of Nov. 16, for example, printed, as verification of previous slanders against the Trotskyists, a new Communist Party manifesto which declared in part:

Lynch Incitement

“Don’t be deceived by traitors who call themselves ‘Socialists’ to cover up their Fascist activities.

“They aim to create disunity among the British people when all must pull together for the common good.

“They have nothing in common with the Labor, Trade Union or Communist organizations. They are doing Hitler’s work in Britain. They are more deadly than paratroops ...”

The manifesto concludes with the admonition: “Treat the Trotskyist as you would a Nazi.”

Thus do the Stalinists provide lynch-inciting arguments for the very same anti-labor newspaper which only a few months ago was calling for the complete suppression of the Stalinists and urging its readers to treat the Stalinist as they would a Nazi!

Thus do the Stalinists, whose own Daily Worker was suppressed and still is suppressed by the government which they are now supporting, appeal for suppression of the anti-fascist revolutionists by the same government and reactionary forces whose repressive measures were directed at themselves only yesterday and will most likely be directed at them again at the next turn of the wheel!

Use War Hysteria for Their Own Ends

The labor movement in this country must be on guard against Stalinist frameups, lies, incitements to lynch violence and governmental repressions. Stalinism is the syphilis of the labor movement not only in Britain but everywhere throughout the world. Its frameup and slander machine operates not only in the Soviet Union, but in the capitalist countries as well.

Especially now, in the spirit of general hysteria created by the war situation, militant workers everywhere must be on the alert to prevent the Stalinists, who cover their most reactionary policies with loud protestations of patriotism, from arousing lypch spirit against working class opponents of Stalinism.

Undoubtedly their provocations against the Trotskyists will be the fiercest because the Trotskyists are the most uncompromising opponents of their treachery and degeneration. But it would be a mistake to assume that such incitement will be directed at the Trotskyists alone.

Already in this country they have launched the most vicious attacks against the Norman Thomas Socialists, in no way connected with the Trotskyists or their policies. And they will not stop there. In their drive for totalitarian repressions against all opponents of their policies, they will stop at nothing. Trotskyists and Socialists are likened to the Nazis today, and tomorrow it will be any militant worker or group who wants to offer resistance to the attacks on their rights or living standards launched by employers who, like the Stalinists, are only too ready to utilize the war situation and hysteria to achieve their anti-labor objectives.

That is why all organizations and all workers who sincerely want to defend civil liberties and workers’ rights in war time as well as in peace, must rally together against the provocations of the Stalinists.

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