Stalin Society of India has published a booklet titled: “Why Was Stalin Denigrated and Made a Controversial Figure?” Written by the late Communist theoretician comrade Moni Guha (MG). This booklet first appeared in two parts as long article in the journal edited by MG, Proletarian Path, Second Series, Volume 1, No. 1, June-July 1981, pp. 12-42, pp. i-xvi, Vol. No. 2 and 3, August-December, 1981, pp. 9-32. In this short but very important work, comrade Guha has analysed in detail the events that unfolded immediately after the death of Stalin. In fact MG raised question on the death and circumstances leading to his death. It has been well established now that Stalin, was very much aware of the deviations that had cropped in the party and Soviet government. His attempts towards implementing the democratic reforms[i] in the Soviet Union and particularly the Communist party was thwarted by the still hidden revisionist clique and the circumstances in which Soviet Union found itself due to the events of second world war and the task of defeating Fascism as well as securing the liberation of those parts that were ravished by the marauding forces of fascist reaction.
Moni Guha wrote, “You can well imagine the condition. As soon as the January, 1953 announcement and the news of arrest of some persons were made the situation was then at the sharpest point…A hectic preparation to remove Stalin was now on the immediate agenda of the opposition elements. Two weeks before Stalin’s death, the news of sudden death of General Kosynkin appeared in Izvestia of February 17, 1953. General Kosynkin was the chief of the department for the security of the Administration of Kremlin and was personally responsible for security of Stalin. On February 28, 1953, four days before the death of Stalin, the personal bodyguard of Stalin was found nowhere. His whereabouts or fate still remains unknown! If the death of Stalin was unexplained and from natural cause, certainly the prior deaths, in this situation, of the Kremlin security Chief, General Kosynkin and the sudden vanishing of Stalin’s bodyguard were clearly remarkable coincidences!”. The events leading to the ‘death’ of Stalin has also been mentioned in the memoirs written by the Soviet politician Dimitri Shepilov.
MG further exposes the designs of revisionists and juxtaposes it with the polity pursued by Stalin, both in the realm of theory and practical politics. Whereas, Stalin consistently upheld the notion of proletarian internationalism and continued to carry forward a consistent proletarian internationalist foreign policy without any concession or ideological retreat. Something that went totally against the later policy followed by the Soviet leadership from Khrushchev to Gorbachev. Thus leading to the fall of the home of Bolshevik revolution. MG brilliantly expose the revisionist design in the four section of this booklet.
Revisionism does not only operate in political or economic realm, but it degenerates in totality the entire revolutionary essence of Marxism-Leninism; leading to all such deviations like national interest instead of proletarian internationalism, collaboration with imperialism and giving prominence to notions like nuclear weapon cancels the use of Marxism and that nuclear weapons would solve all the contradictions. On the other hand the same revisionist as MG writes wanted to give concessions to imperialism to ‘ease’ the nuclear tension. In other words it was akin to throwing the baby out along with the bathwater. At one hand sole reliance on weapons that can solve all the contradictions and on the other giving primacy to so-called peace process. This deal with imperialism was in direct contradiction with Lenin’s understanding on imperialism as well as negating the profound teachings of Stalin enumerated in his work, Economic Problems of Socialism in the USSR.
From the field of international diplomacy and national politics to those of economic policy, the revisionists went on to not only negate Stalin but also in their pursuit negates Marx. MG goes into detail to analyse this in the section Two Parallel World Market. Where he shows us how Stalin was correct in understanding the socialist division of labour and his thinking conforms to that of Marx. The revisionist economists on the other hand by pegging ‘the socialist world market price’ to that with the world price effectively sabotaged the socialist project and made it subservient to the capitalist competition. In fact this is nothing but integrating the socialist market with capitalist world market in name of ‘single world market’ and thus took Soviet Union on the same path of exploitation of the ‘international division of labour’ based on the imperialist world prices. What did this bring in its wake? The dismantling of Two Parallel World Market that Stalin had in his Economic Problems of Socialism in the U.S.S.R, had said; “the sphere of exploitation of the world’s resources by the major capitalist countries will not expand but contract; that their opportunities for sale in the world market will deteriorate and their industries will be operating more and more below capacity. That is what is meant by the deepening of the general crisis of the world capitalist system in connection with the disintegration of the world market.’”.
The booklet further goes on to explain the changes that took place in the Soviet Union after the death of Stalin. MG summarises the dynamics that were in play during his death, in a poetical way. He writes, “Stalin died at such a crucial point of history when the brightest unique prospect and greatest black danger – a prospect of revolution and the danger of counter-revolution – at the highest of the greatest class battle of history – confronted each other. It demanded a dynamic subjective leadership at least equal to Stalin.” And we all know what happened to the great Socialist project in its own homeland. With the death the high tide of revolution reversed courtesy the new leadership that came to picture – a bunch of mediocre, philistines you indulged in self-delusion politics and considered the socialist camp and the communist parties as subservient to the interest of Soviet Union. Much to the detriment of the international proletarian revolution.
In the last chapter MG also takes on Mao terming him another Khrushchev, and exposing deviationist strands in Mao’s politics. In conclusion MG writes, “Mao has replaced the historical and objective analysis by his subjective impression – an impression of a bourgeois nationalist and in course of this the analysis of actual history has been consciously subordinated to the opportunist need of the subjective inclination of this or that factions.”
Terming Mao as revisionist was something for which MG had to pay dearly during his life as he was isolated, criticised and even ridiculed by all so-called revolutionaries of ML camp. But today we know that MG was right in his analysis of Mao and Chinese nationalism in his thinking.
This small booklet is an indispensable must read for everyone concerned with Left movement. The Stalin Society of India deserves to be congratulated for getting this printed and bringing it once more in front of the world. The details of the book is given in the box.
Published by: Stalin Society of India
Price: Rs. 30 (exclusive of postage)
Stalin Society of India
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[i] For details one may refer to the article written by Grover Furr titled, Stalin and his struggle for democratic reforms, published in the journal C-Logic. Recently this article has been published in booklet form by Nava Sakam Pracuranalu from Andhra Pradesh, India,