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A. Rudzienski

Purges Continue in Poland

(29 November 1948)

From Labor Action, Vol. 12 No. 48, 29 November 1948, p. 1.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

The deviation of Gomulka, ex-secretary-general of the Stalinist Party, has ended “peacefully” without any Moscow Trials or assassinations. Gomulka remains what his name indicates (Gomulka: piece of cheese), a man of ... cheese. He admitted his errors, confessed his nationalist deviation before a meeting of PPR “activists,” and his life was spared. On the other hand, tens of thousands of militants have been purged and expelled from the party. The faction of Gomulka, Kliszko, Kliscko, Kowauski, Sokorski, etc., is under strict “vigilance.”

Although Gomulka’s schism slowed down the process of fusion between the PPR and the pseudo-PPS (Socialist Party), the MVD (GPU) is taking punitive measures against all the members of the shadow-parties who are considered “suspicious.” Cyrankiewicz, Prime Minister, docile instrument of the MVD, proclaimed a campaign against the partisans of the “third force” between the PPR (Stalinists) and the PSY (Mikolajczyk’s party). Among those purged have been Hochfeld, because of the thesis he presented at the Wroclaw Congress of the pseudo-PPS, demanding more democracy than Stalin thinks necessary for Poland; Osobka and Schwalbe because they “slowed down Socialist construction in Poland” – poor Osobka served faithfully in installing the dictatorship and the Russian occupation of Poland, was “trusted” by the MVD and has now fallen into disgrace; Drobner and Wachowicz, also have been purged, the former a “Leftist” and ex-leader of the Independent Socialist Party in pre-war days.

To this list we can add the names of Kurylowicz, secretary of the railroad workers union, Topinski and Rusinek. In a word, all these groups within the pseudo-Polish Socialist Party who have not submitted 100 per cent to the MVD, who have an opinion which differs by so much as a hair’s breadth from the official Stalinist line, are being eliminated. This political liquidation is in obedience to the directives issued by the Kremlin to speed the fusion of the “workers’ parties” into a single monolithic organization.

Nothing Helps

The same process is taking place in the peasant camp, which includes the pro-Stalinist SL, and the remnants of the PSL (Mikolajczyk’s Peasant Party), which has been “adapted” to “popular democracy.” It seems that the Stalinization of the SL was not sufficient, it being necessary to expel from the party Putek and Wrone, old peasant demagogues and opportunists.

Both, in the period of the Pilsudski dictatorship, supported the government, betraying their party; afterwards they offered their services to Moscow. But one mild criticism by Putek of the servile Stalinist parliament sufficed to bring about their expulsion from the party. Until then, Putek had held the Postal ministry in the Warsaw cabinet.

From the PSL (formerly Mikolajczyk’s party) Kiernik has been expelled. He is an ex-minister in the government of 1923, who ordered the slaughter of the Cracow workers. Representative of the Peasant Right, tending toward an alliance with the Right, Kiernik betrayed Mikolajczyk and offered his services to Moscow. The Stalinists utilized his services and are now “liquidating” him as a dirty, worn-out rag.

The pro-government Catholics have also been attacked. The priests, Kacyznski and Piwowarczyk having been arrested, and the Catholic publications suspended. The regime increases its offensive under pressure from Moscow.

Basis of Purges

The inquisitorial action is headed by the “President of Poland” himself, Bierut, a Stalinist Torquemada. Catherine II had less cynicism and more pleasure in installing her ex-lover Poniatoswski as King of Poland, than Stalin had when he named as president of a “People’s Poland” his ex-policeman, ex-hangman of the Polish section of the GPU, the informer and assassin of his own comrades, Bierut. For Bierut is an old agent of the Russian secret police, of Stalin’s “Okhrana,” a hangman of the proletarian vanguard of Poland. Now this police “leader” is instructing the “workers’ parties” in the interpretation of “Marxism-Leninism-Stalinism.”

“The transition between popular democracy and Socialism is not a spontaneous but a directed process,” according to the policeman, Bierut ... “It is directed by the proletarian party and the apparatus of the popular state.” In a word, we are marching toward the illustrious kingdom of bureaucratic despotism. “The future united party of the proletariat must be based unshakably on a single revolutionary ideology of Marxism-Leninism ... which is directed and enriched by the great world leader of the proletariat, Generalissimo Stalin ...”

Now we know everything, toward what the purges of the shadow-parties are leading. Admitted for some time, their purpose is to disarm and destroy the national underground resistance in Poland. All roads, therefore, lead to Moscow. The process of incorporation has profound economic roots, based on the imperialist expansion of Russian Stalinism.

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