“From its very birth, the Soviet republic faced formidable challenges, both internal and external. All the same, it defeated internal saboteurs and imperialist interventionist armies at a time when it was incomparably weaker than its enemies; it scored unprecedented achievements in socialist construction; it made the greatest contribution to the achievement of victory in the war against fascism; and it rendered selfless internationalist support to proletarian revolutionary and national-liberation struggles of the people of all countries. There was no fortress that the Soviet people could not storm as long as they fought under the banner of Marxism Leninism and the leadership of the Bolshevik party headed by Lenin and Stalin…But, beginning with the 20th Congress, which brought the Khrushchevite revisionist clique to power in the CPSU, all this changed. Through its revisionist line in matters of politics, ideology, philosophy and economy, in its domestic as well as foreign policy, this clique started the process of undermining the party, the Soviet economy and the Soviet state, which over a period of three-and-a-half decades led to the collapse of socialism in the USSR and the liquidation of the CPSU and the disintegration of the Soviet Union…What began with Khrushchev as a trickle had by the time of Gorbachev assumed the proportions of a veritable flood, ending up in the restoration of capitalism in the land of Soviets, the land of Lenin and Stalin – the land of once triumphant socialism. Thus, what collapsed was not Marxism Leninism: it was revisionism that came to an inevitable and scandalous collapse, taking down with it the USSR itself.”
– from Revisionism and the Demise of the USSR by Harpal Brar
“In our country, for the first time in history, a State has taken shape which is not a dictatorship of any one class, but an instrument of society as a whole, of the entire people…The dictatorship of the proletariat is no longer necessary”.
— N.S. Khrushchov: Report on the Programme of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, 22nd. Congress CPSU; London; 1961; p. 57, 58.
“The fact that atomic war may break out, isn’t that class struggle? There is no alternative to class struggle. This is a very serious question. The be-all and end-all is not peaceful coexistence. After all, we have been holding on for some time, and under Stalin we held on to the point where the imperialists felt able to demand point-blank: either surrender such and such positions, or it means war. So far the imperialists haven’t renounced that”.
– Vyacheslav Molotov
Another colloquial word, “Brezhnevism” is a blanket term for supporters of the later Soviet Union and the pro-Soviet line. This form of thinking is a revisionist yet at first alluring ideology based around the belief that Khrushchev was a rightist deviator from Marxism-Leninism but that Brezhnev put a halt to this continued trend and consolidated socialism.
It has come to mean basically “Pan-Socialism,” which can be aptly defined as “if a world leader claimed to be socialist and [probably] wasn’t named Tito, then he or she probably was, and if he or she claimed to lead a socialist nation under Marxist-Leninist guidelines, then so much the better.” Of course, even this definition is not comprehensive, since many pro-Soviet parties have begun rehabilitation of Tito and Yugoslavia. Brezhnevites generally state that Leonid Brezhnev, Joseph Stalin, Hugo Chavez, Deng Xiaoping, Ho Chi Minh, Fidel Castro, Nicolae Ceausescu, Enver Hoxha, Mao Zedong and many others were all genuine in their communist views, but that the latter two specifically made mistakes and/or moved too far towards the ultra-left when they split with the USSR. They condemn “Hoxhaism” and Maoism as “sectarian” and its analysis of state-capitalism as ultra-left and en route towards the road of rightism.
Similarly, they deny the concept of social-imperialism and defend the invasions of Czechoslovakia and Afghanistan in particular as fully justified, while also defending present-day China as socialist. They respond to the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989 with disdain, supporting the government’s move against the students.
Brezhnevism is strong as a movement primarily because it allows for the acceptance of virtually all communist lines as acceptable and adopting an appealing “call to arms” towards all segments of Marxism-Leninism to unite towards revolution. In the process however, it ignores the fact that Marxist-Leninists do call for unity, just not unity for the sake of unity. Brezhnevites are also engaging in meaningless talk when they discuss “sectarianism,” since the issue of whether China is socialist or not (among many other things) can in no way be viewed as a minor issue.
Brezhnevism also has at its basis a welfarist appeal to emotion. What makes a country “socialist?” Well, first it claims to be socialist, and it is led by a communist party of some sort. It also provides for the people (however varied the “provisions” be, from the DPRK to Cuba to China). Clearly, the “great concern” a country has for its citizens magically makes it socialist when such is backed up by socialist rhetoric, if we are to believe the Brezhnevites. When this fails, of course, they go into a Trotskyist-like “defense of the gains of the revolution,” condemning all criticisms of a “socialist” country as attempts at “counterrevolution.”
Many of them are just honestly trying to be revolutionaries, but are just misguided about the historical experiences of communist movement, socialism and the capitalist restoration (which they think was only initiated during Gotbachev’s times). Many of these people are open to Marxist-Leninist analysis and views.
Examples of Soviet Social-Imperialism
During the 1950′s was Khrushchev’s “specialization” policy, or “international division of labor,” which meant that these nations would be developing specific resource outputs of their own, which would in theory strengthen the Warsaw Pact by largely reducing the lack of certain resources many of the nations faced. In reality however this reduced these states to neo-colonialism, and only Albania refused. By the late 1980′s these states quickly broke down and the Warsaw Pact was dissolved in 1991.
A large anti-Soviet fascist uprising began as a reaction to de-Stalinization, which emboldened fascists everywhere. The Hungarian counterrevolution united reactionaries against the state. The Soviet Union invaded soon after, defeating the uprising while also replacing the discredited party with a total puppet revisionist party known as the Socialist Workers’ Party, which adopted “Goulash Socialism” (market-’socialism’).
After a hyper-revisionist leader known as Alexander Dubchek rose to power as First Secretary of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia, he began moving to the right and slowly repudiated Communism in favor of Social-Democracy. The Soviets, afraid of losing an unwilling ally, formulated the “Brezhnev Doctrine.” The Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia resulted in yet another puppet leader and scared the rest of the Warsaw Pact states into total allegiance with the exception of Albania, which withdrew the same year, condemning the Soviets as social-imperialists.
Albania was the only nation occupied during World War II whose independence was not determined by a great power, along with Yugoslavia. The Yugoslavs however soon dominated the Albanian state until the Soviet-Yugoslav Split which resulted in the defeat of the pro-Yugoslav line of the Albanian Communist Party led by Kochi Xoxe. The Albanians enjoyed strong relations with the Soviet Union until the 1950′s, when it rejected Khrushchev’s specialization policy and condemned Khrushchev’s ‘Secret Speech’ of 1956 as revisionist. A submarine base was built on the island of Sazan near Vlora, which the Soviets attempted to claim control of to no success after the Albanians spurned them. Furthermore, Khrushchev gave subtle support to Greek separatism in southern Albania as another action designed to have Albania relent and give up its independent position.
In his memoirs, Khrushchev said of Hoxha that he “was like a dog who bites the hand that feeds it.” Albania successfuly resisted Soviet social-imperialism and spoke out against it in 1968 (Czechoslovakia) and 1979 (Afghanistan).
One example of the Soviet’s attempts to use Albania as a fruit-growing colony, from “The Khrushchevites”:
«We must have regard for profitability in everything,» continued Khrushchev. «Let us take industry. I am of the same opinion as you that Albania should have its own industry. But what sort of industry? I think that you ought to develop the food industry, such as preserving and processing fish, fruit, vegetable oil, etc. You want to develop heavy industry, too. This should be looked at carefully,» he said and after mentioning that we could set up some engineering plant for repair work and spare parts, he added
«As for the mineral-processing industry, for the production of metals, this is unprofitable for you. We have metals and we can supply you with what you want. If we give you one day’s production from our industry, your needs will be fulfilled for the whole year.»
«Likewise in agriculture. In your country,» he continued, «you should plant those crops wich grow best and are more profitable. In this direction, too, we have made mistakes, as in Georgia, for example. We had taken the decision to plant bread grain there, to plant cotton in the Ukraine, etc. But calculations show that in Georgia we should grow citrus fruit, grapes, and other fruit, and should grow grain in the Ukraine. Now we have taken other decisions and have eliminated those crops which don’t grow well, both in Georgia and other places. Thus, in Albania, too, those crops which do best and yield the greatest production, such as cotton, citrus fruit, olives, etc., should be developed. In this way Albania will become a beautiful garden and we will fulfil each other’s needs.»
«One of the main directions of the development of agriculture in our country,» I said, «is that of increasing bread grain production. Bread has always been and still is a great problem for us: »
«Don’t worry about growing bread grain,» interjected Khrushchev immediately. «We shall supply you with all the wheat you want, because even one day’s over fulfilment of the plan in the Soviet Union is sufficient for Albania to live on for three years. We are advancing rapidly in agriculture,» he continued. «Let me read you some of the statistics about the fulfilment of the plan of the spring sowing in our country: the planting has been fulfilled… per cent, … hectares of land more than last year have been planted, … million hectares above the plan…,» and he went on to stuff us with figures, which he rattled off, one after the other, to give us the impression that we were dealing not with any sort of leader, but with one that had the situation at his fingertips.
After a popular revolution overthrew the discredited Fulgencio Batista (who was so hated that the Americans hoped to overthrow him and install Col. Ramon Barquin in his place), Fidel Castro came to power saying that “Capitalism sacrifices man, the Communist state sacrifices man. . Our revolution is not red, but olive-green, the colour of the rebel army.” As Castro quickly shifted to the left however, the Americans became extremely hostile and Castro found an ally in the Soviet Union. Though relations were not extremely close, they quickly grew throughout the 1960′s. The Soviets wanted sugar production to be the focus of Cuba (as per Khrushchev’s specialization policy within the Warsaw Pact), and Castro agreed.
In the book “Castroism: Theory and Practice,” it notes that
“Castro announced… that his whole new economic policy was postulated on a spectacular increase in sugar production, aimed at reaching 10 million tons by 1970. Agricultural diversification went backward instead of forward. For example, rice production had advanced to a high point of 181,000 tons in 1957, two years before Castro, and plunged to 95,400 tons in 1962, after three years of Castro. Cuba had been forced to reorganise its entire economy.”
In other words, “Castro announced a reorientation of the Cuban economy towards agriculture, in particular the growing of sugar cane and cattle-raising.”
This alienated Che Guevara, who, in “Cuba – Exception or Vanguard?,” stressed that
“Under-development or distorted development, carries with it a dangerous specialisation in raw materials, containing a threat of hunger for all our people. We, ‘the under-developed’, are those of the single crop, the single product, and the single market. A single product whose uncertain sale depends upon a single market, which imposes and sets conditions. This is the great formula of imperial economic domination which is combined with the old and always useful Roman formula, ‘divide and conquer.’”
In the end, as Daniel James’ Che Guevara notes of Che’s comments to the Egyptian weekly Akher Saa, “Che roundly castigated the Russians as ‘revisionists’”
“Che’s embrace of a kind of Maoism and his search for ideas that led him outside (Soviet) Marxism-Leninism could be, and were, construed in Moscow to be be anti-Soviet. Che had to go. His repeated public attacks upon the Soviet Union had finally become intolerable to the Kremlin, whose representatives had served notice of their displeasure on Premier Fidel Castro, leaving Castro with no real choice, since Moscow’s economic aid kept his government and economy afloat.”
“Che himself was not seen anywhere in public after returning from Africa, excepting one appearance at a lecture he gave towards the end of March (1965). Che never turned up again at the Ministry of Industry following his March lecture there.. He… had suddenly and mysteriously disappeared from public view.”
In the end, Che was captured in Bolivia and shot. His diaries (published in 1968 as Bolivian Diary) noted that one of the main causes of Che’s defeat were
“Treacherous leaders…. Their true purpose was to destroy guerilla movements in the bud, to slow down all revolutionary action, and to put in its place their own absurd and despicable political deals”
Daniel James stated in his book that
“The Bolivian Communists deserve all the criticism Castro gives them, for they did indeed play a ‘treacherous’ role which contributed mightily, perhaps decisively, to Che’s failure.”
Could the pro-Soviet Communist Party of Bolivia have been to blame?
Throughout the 1970′s and 80′s the Cubans continued to move ever closer to the Soviets. They participated in pro-Soviet interventions abroad (see XI and XII) and as Sebastian Balfour’s 1990 book Castro notes, in 1976 “[a] new constitution largely modelled on that of the Soviet Union was approved in a referendum in 1976.”
Cuban dependence on the Soviet Union was so great that in a 1992 interview with Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera Castro stated that
“Our basic problems are the economic blockade and the disappearance of the socialist camp. Some 85 percent of our trade was with those countries. The value of our sugar in fact, balanced the cost of the petroleum we got from the USSR… That trade has almost disappeared with the disappearance of the socialist countries. We had to turn to new markets. We have lost imports, credit, and technology, and sought fuel, raw materials, and drugs elsewhere.”
In the Guardian in the same year, he said that “I can’t say that Gorbachev played a conscious part in the destruction of the Soviet Union, because I have no doubt that Gorbachev’s aim was to struggle to perfect socialism.”
Pro-Soviet to the end, or even beyond that end.
In struggle with Portuguese colonialism were chiefly the two parties known as the Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) and the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA). The MPLA declared itself nominally socialist and loyal to the Soviets while UNITA was opportunist and recieved aid from apartheid South Africa, Maoist China, Israel, the United States, Bulgaria, Egypt, France, Morocco, North Korea (although North Korea later recognized the MPLA government), Saudi Arabia, Zaire and Zambia.
Meanwhile, the MPLA was supported by Algeria, Bulgaria, Cape Verde Islands, Czechoslovakia, the Congo, Guinea-Bissau, Morocco, Mozambique, Nigeria, North Korea, the People’s Republic of China, Romania, São Tomé and Príncipe, the Soviet Union, Sudan, Tanzania, Vietnam, and Yugoslavia.
In the 1960s the MPLA had gone to the White House to ask for aid but had been rejected. Their leader Agostinho Neto, like Fidel Castro, originally began the struggle as an anti-communist, saying, “I totally reject the accusation that our movement is inspired by Marx or ruled by any outside force. When they ask about our ideology, we say we are progressives interested in real democracy, especially for the exploited man. We are interested in social reforms, in economic democracy” in 1975.
Not long after he would switch the MPLA’s nominal ideology to Marxism-Leninism.
Over time both the MPLA and UNITA proved to be very popular among Angolans albeit in different areas and among different ethnic groups. A chronic and extremely long civil war raged after the fall of Portuguese colonialism in 1975, with the MPLA leading the state. The MPLA had primiarly a petty-bourgeois leadership that spoke openly of protecting foreign investments and was given $102 million by US corporation Gulf Oil, among many others.
“When the Portuguese left in 1975, Gulf Oil Company had refused to abandon its offshore platforms in the Cabinda region. A contract with the MPLA government was arranged… President José Eduardo dos Santos assigned squads of Cuban soldiers to guarantee the safety of Gulf and the other Western oil giants based in Luanda, including Chevron’s new office tower [on the Avenida Lenin]. And thus, Angola became the only place in the world where Cuban troops, supposedly sworn to the destruction of capitalism, were protecting U.S. multinational oil companies against attacks from U.S.-backed guerrillas.”
(Tom Zoellner. The Heartless Stone: a Journey Through the World of Diamonds, Deceit and Desire. New York: St. Martin’s Press. 2006. p. 180.)
From 1976 to 1991, 430,000 Cuban troops and volunteers served in Angola, with about 10,000 Cuban troops propping up the MPLA government. The Soviets give the MPLA MIGs, rockets, tanks, gunboats while the US, South Africa and Mobutu’s Zaire continue to arm, train and fund the opposition.
The Soviets were pleased to see the Cubans invade on behalf of the MPLA as UNITA turned increasingly opportunist due to lack of Chinese aid and turned to the Americans and South Africans for aid. In the end, the Cubans ensured MPLA rule though UNITA continued to struggle beyond the collapse of the USSR and the MPLA’s turn to the right, with the US even abandoning UNITA in support of the MPLA. The civil war did not end until 2002, when UNITA leader Jonas Savimbi was finally killed, ending the 20+ year war.
Perhaps Enver Hoxha summed it best.
“The Soviet Union also involves its allies, or better, its satellites in its interference. We are seeing this concretely in Africa, where the Soviet social-imperialist and their Cuban mercenaries are intervening on the pretext that they are assisting the revolution. This is a lie. Their intervention is nothing but a colonialist action aimed at capturing markets and subjugating peoples… They have never had the slightest intention of assisting the Angolan revolution, but their aim was and is to get their claws into that African country which had won a certain independence after the expulsion of the Portuguese colonialists The Cuban mercenaries are the colonial army dispatched by the Soviet Union to capture markets and strategic positions in the countries of Black Africa, and to go on from Angola to other states, to enable the Soviet social-imperialists, too , to create a modern colonial empire…. Agostinho Neto is playing the game of the Soviets. In the struggle against the other faction, in order to seize power for himself, he called in the Soviets to help him. The struggle between the two opposing Angolan clans did not have anything of a people’s revolutionary character.”
Ogaden War: Ethiopia and Somalia
Ethiopia and Eritrea
In 1969 the Somali government was overthrown by the military, led by Siad Barre, who was involved in the Soviet-trained army. Though it would seem like Somalia would be yet another pro-Soviet state, this did not occur. Barre repudiated the official atheist line of the Soviet Union and proclaimed Scientific Socialism the basis of his state, while attempting to integrate “socialism” with the Somali nationalism and Islamic culture. Though relations with the Soviets remained fairly close (Barre met with many pro-Soviet leaders including Castro, for instance), Barre wanted security from US imperialism. Ideologically however, Barre drew from Maoism and African Socialism than he ever did Soviet Marxism-Leninism of Lenin and Stalin.
Cut to 1974, the Ethiopian monarchy is overthrown by leftist military men who united into what was known as the Derg. Mengistu Haile Mariam gradually consolidates his position and becomes Chairman of the Derg in 1977. Mengistu was a leftist who, like Barre, enjoyed mixing ideologies. He combined Soviet Marxism-Leninism, some aspects of Maoism, and Amharic nationalism which backfired and alienated Ethiopia’s many ethnic groups, especially Muslim Somalis and Oromos. As authors Marina and David Ottaway note in their book “Afrocommunism” however,
“[f]rom an average of about $10 million a year between 1969 and 1974, US military deliveries [in Ethiopia] reached a total value of $18.5 million in 1974-75, $26 million in 1975-76 and almost $135 million in 1976-77.”
In the book “Talk of the Devil,” a series of interviews of former leaders by Riccardo Orizio, he interviews Mengistu after his fall from power. Mengistu alluded that he was an opportunist and just tried to get aid from whomever he could.
Relations between Somalia and Ethiopia deteriorated. The Ethiopian government cracked down on Somali separatism in the Ogaden region, as many Somalis associated themselves with the Pan-Somali and Islam-friendly government of Barre in Somalia rather than the Amharic-based, atheistic government of Mengistu. The Western Somali Liberation Front was formed to coordinate these Somalis into open rebellion, and in 1977 war began between Somalia and Ethiopia over the region. The Somalis quickly moved on to bigger and better victories until suddenly alliances switched. The Soviets, convinced that their interests in the Red Sea were better served by a more pro-Soviet leader of a stronger state, sided with Ethiopia and abandoned Somalia. The Cubans then arrived with massive military assistance and drove the Somalis out of the Ogaden. The war ended a year later with Ethiopia victorious.
As the years went on the Somali economy continued to be damaged by both the abrupt loss of Soviet trade and the losses of the Somali war. This however was not the only issue. Many pro-Ethiopian rebellions began in the north, but this was not about ethnic issues but tribal ones. These tribal rebellions grew as the government continued its leftist programs and centralization policies. By the mid 80′s the rebels quickly made gains while Barre offered ceasefires. They were rejected by leaders who were now resembling warlords. In 1988 Ethiopia and Somalia patched up relations and vowed to stay out of each others affairs but by then it was too late. US-backed tribal groups soon began to emerge as Barre (who sought US aid during the Ogaden War and continued some trade with the US in the following years) distanced himself from the US and vice-versa. In 1991 he was forced to flee, and Somalia has been in anarchy ever since.
In Ethiopia, Mengistu’s policies proved to be his undoing. Organized resistance among ethnic lines quickly appeared led chiefly by the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front, the Eritrean People’s Liberation Front, and the Oromo Liberation Front. In the 1980′s famine hit, and by 1991 Mengistu was forced to flee from his nation, having alienated every ethnic group but his own. He later blamed a lack of Soviet aid starting in the late 80′s as the chief cause of his failure to hold onto power.
In the 1950′s Afghanistan was a monarchy led by a King whose powers were quickly becoming constitutional. Daoud, a cousin of the King, became Prime Minister. A Pashtun nationalist and anti-communist, he nevertheless became increasingly pro-Soviet until being forced to resign in 1963. In the 1960′s Afghanistan became a de jure constitutional monarchy and the pro-Soviet People’s Democratic Party was founded in 1965. It was soon divided into two factions, the Parcham (who were reformist) and the Khalq (who were revolutionary, at least within the limits of a pro-Soviet revisionist framework).
Though the PDP (both factions) gained in legislative victories in 1969, the Shola-y-Jaweid (a Maoist, later Hoxhaist movement) remained more popular among students and those of the Hazara ethnic group (opposed to the PDP’s Pashtun nationalist leaders) while also remaining underground.
In 1973 with Soviet and PDP support, Daoud overthrew the monarchy and declared a Republic. He allowed the Parcham into his cabinet but was critical of the Khalq who regarded him as reactionary. Over time however Daoud began to purge the Communists and improve ties with non-Soviet states. The army, now loyal to the Khalq, overthrew Daoud in 1978 and declared a Democratic Republic. The PDP was now Khalq-dominated but policies mirroring the Soviets quickly alienated Afghan society, which began massive rebellions that soon spread to the entire country by 1979. Opposition to the Soviets by Communists was attacked (such as the Shola-y-Jaweid) and forced underground, with most joining the growing rebellions. It was clear that change was necessary. Hafizullah Amin overthrew the discredited Mohammed Taraki and began reaching out to the Americans (who were funding some of the rebels) for help.
The Soviets decided that losing Afghanistan in their sphere of influence was intolerable, and invaded in December of 1979. Amin was killed (for being a “CIA agent”) and the Parcham were brought back in power. For ten years the Soviet war in Afghanistan became the Soviet equivalent of the Vietnam War. By 1987 Soviet leader Gorbachev decided that the massive and unending losses in the Afghan war warranted a withdraw, which was accomplished in 1989. The Afghan government essentially abandoned upholding socialism in the early 90′s, when it was finally overthrown. Soviet social-imperialism beyond its own borders came to an end with the end of the war as the Soviet Union began its road to dissolution.
Russification of the Soviet Union
In the 1940′s Russification began. Khrushchev in the Ukraine for example was one of the pioneers, condemning those who felt that Russians were still by far the dominant group within the Soviet Union. By the 1970′s however Russification truly began to take hold. By the 60′s, the Uzbek SSR for example was focused entirely on cotton exporting to the other Soviet Republics, yet another specialization policy. As the National Composition of the Populations of the SSRs in 1964 states:
“The climatic conditions and specific features of agricultural production in the republics of Central Asia and the Caucasus… demand workers with the necessary knowledge and labour habits of farming in these areas. Such workers are, above all, the native peoples of these regions. The mass recruitment of this population into industry, transport, construction, etc., might weaken the development of quite important sectors of agriculture. In planning the development of the economy, the specific features of such regions are taken into account. For example, in the Seven-Year Plan of developing the economy of the USSR for 1959-65, it is indicated that the Uzbek SSR will continue in the future to be the main cotton base of the country. Therefore, basic attention in Uzbekistan will continue to be devoted to the development of cotton growing”
Resistance in the Uzbek SSR however was wrong. In 1971, Problems of the Optimisation of the Development of Light Industry in Uzbekistan in the light of the Decisions of the 24th Congress of the CPSU stated that
“Uzbekistan produces 70% of All-Union output of cotton lint, 38% of raw silk and 90% of kenaf fibre. Yet only 2.8% of cotton cloth manufactured in the country, 2.7% of clothes and shoes, 2.6% of knitwear and 2.1% of stockings and socks, are produced here, while the steadily growing share of the republic in the population of the USSR reached 5% in 1970. By quantity of output per capita of light industry products, Uzbekistan occupies one of the last places in the Soviet Union… “Just in the past five-year plan, the average tempos of growth in output of light industry were 8.5% for the nation as a whole, but 3.6% for Uzbekistan… During the past 35 years not a single cotton textile combine has been built in the Uzbek SSR. Up to now, there are no enterprises for manufacturing woolen fabrics and blankets. There are few knitwear, garment and shoe factories…”
National sentiment was now truly clamped down. In the April 19th, 1978 edition of the Guardian, it states that:
“Soviet authorities have reinstated Georgian as the official language of Soviet Georgia after demonstrations there last week over a proposed new constitution which had eliminated the language as the republic’s official tongue. The demonstrations occurred on Friday in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi, when several hundred university students apparently marched from the campus about a mile through the city centre to the steps of the Government’s buildings where the Georgian Supreme Soviet was meeting to adopt the new constitution… Georgians, who comprise most of the population, apparently interpreted this change to mean further ‘russification’ of their republic.”
In 1986 the Kazakh SSR experienced more significant protests which then turned into riots when Dinmukhamed Konayev was dismissed from his post and an ethnic Russian, Kolbin, who had never set foot in the Kazakh SSR prior, was appointed as Konayev’s successor.
In the end, Russification alienated the people. By 1991 only the Central Asian states truly showed interest in keeping the Union together, if only because they would be hit badly by its fall. Russian chauvinism spearheaded the fall of the USSR, with many Russians feeling that the “backwards” people of the East were holding them down. And so evil started within the borders of the USSR and ended within its borders. Soviet social-imperialism had come to an end.
Who is Brezhnev?
Leonid Brezhnev led the Soviet Union from 1964 (after Khrushchev) till his death in 1982. His long rule shaped much of modern day revisionism and until the 1990s was the greatest influence numerically amongst those calling themselves communist in the West.
Because he ousted Khrushchev and adopted a “neutral” policy toward Stalin, the Western imperialist press reviled him as harboring Stalinists. Although he replaced Khrushchev, he kept the Soviet Union on a course to the right of Enver Hoxha in Albania. Indeed, under Brezhnev, the Soviet Union carried out a border war against China and asked Nixon for permission to drop nuclear weapons on China.
Brezhnev’s rule was known as a time of superpower contention with the United States. He pushed detente, but he also provided “aid” to Third World liberation struggles willing to adopt his party’s revisionist theses. At the same time, people like Yeltsin and Gorbachev thrived under Brezhnev’s rule and later came to criticize it for “stagnationism.”
As a result of the open capitalist restoration in the Soviet Union, Brezhnevites are now much more friendly to Maoists. Many contend they are considering Mao’s theses and no doubt in some cases it is a true claim.
As always, there is some contention over who should be included in this category. Some Trotskyists would say that the neo-Trotskyist “Workers World Party” should belong here, because of its geopolitical stances mirroring Brezhnevism. Since the Workers World Party continues to distribute biographical material more favorable to Trotsky than Stalin, it belongs more in the neo-Trotskyist and Brezhnevite category.
Soviet Invasion of Czechoslovakia (1968)
The general dissatisfaction within the Czechoslovak military became increasingly evident. In 1966 Czechoslovakia, following the lead of Romania, rejected the Soviet Union’s call for more military integration within the Warsaw Pact and sought greater input in planning and strategy for the Warsaw Pact’s non-Soviet members. At the same time, plans to effect great structural changes in Czechoslovak military organizations were under discussion. All these debates heated up in 1968 during the period of political liberalization known as the Prague Spring, when CSLA commanders put forward plans to democratize the armed forces, plans that included limiting the role of the party. National military doctrine became an even greater issue when two important documents were released: the Action Program of the Ministry of Defense and the Memorandum of the Klement Gottwald Military Political Academy. These documents stated that Czechoslovakia should base its defense strategy on its own geopolitical interests and that the threat from the West had been overstated. Although the regime of Alexander Dubcek, the party first secretary (title changed to general secretary in 1971), was careful to reassure the Soviet Union that Czechoslovakia would remain committed to the Warsaw Pact, Moscow felt challenged by these developments, which undoubtedly played a major role in the decision to invade in August 1968.
On August 20, 1968, Warsaw Pact forces–including troops from Bulgaria, the German Democratic Republic (East Germany), Hungary, Poland, and the Soviet Union–invaded Czechoslovakia. Approximately 500,000 troops, mostly from the Soviet Union, poured across the borders in a blitzkrieg-like advance.
The invasion was meticulously planned and coordinated, as the operation leading to the capture of Prague’s Ruzyne International Airport in the early hours of the invasion demonstrated. A special flight from Moscow, which had prior clearance, arrived just as the Warsaw Pact troops began crossing the borders. The aircraft carried more than 100 plainclothes agents, who quickly secured the airport and prepared the way for a huge airlift. Giant An-12 aircraft began arriving at the rate of one per minute, unloading Soviet airborne troops equipped with artillery and light tanks. As the operation at the airport continued, columns of tanks and motorized rifle troops headed toward Prague and other major centers, meeting no resistance.
By dawn on August 21, 1968, Czechoslovakia was an occupied country. During the day, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs “with the endorsement of the President of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic and on behalf of the Government of the Republic” transmitted to the governments of the invading countries “a resolute protest with the requirement that the illegal occupation of Czechoslovakia be stopped without delay and all armed troops be withdrawn.” That evening in a nationwide radio broadcast President Svoboda stated that the Warsaw Pact forces had entered the country “without the consent of the constitutional organs of the state,” thus officially denying the Soviet claim that they had been invited into the country to preserve socialism. The people of Czechoslovakia generally resented the presence of foreign troops. They demonstrated their objections in mass gatherings in the streets and by various acts of passive resistance. The invading troops could see that they had not been invited into and were not wanted in Czechoslovakia.
One of the priority missions of the Warsaw Pact forces during the early stages of the invasion was to neutralize the Czechoslovak armed forces. That mission proved to be easy because Czechoslovak authorities had confined the armed forces to their barracks. In effect, the Czechoslovak forces were prisoners in their own barracks although, on orders from the Warsaw Pact command, they had not been disarmed. At the end of three weeks, the Soviet units that had surrounded Czechoslovak military installations were pulled back, but the suspicions that had been aroused among the troops on both sides were not easily dispelled. Czechoslovak military spokesmen tried to depict their forces as the same strong, efficient organization that had previously manned the westernmost wall of the Warsaw Pact, but obvious doubts had been raised in the minds of authorities in the other countries. Czechoslovaks, in turn, wondered about allies who could so suddenly become invaders.
It was not until October 16 that agreement was reached for the partial withdrawal of the Warsaw Pact armies. The Soviet Union made a big show over the agreement, sending Premier Aleksei Kosygin to Prague as leader of a high-level delegation to observe the ceremony. Czechoslovak joy was tempered by the knowledge that a sizable army of occupation would remain after the bulk of the invading force had departed. The Bulgarian, East German, Hungarian, and Polish troops were ordered to leave the country, but Soviet units were to remain in what was referred to as “temporary stationing.” In the agreement, Czechoslovakia retained responsibility for defense of its western borders, but Soviet troops were to be garrisoned in the interior of the country. As events transpired, however, the major Soviet headquarters and four of its five ground divisions were deployed in the Czech Socialist Republic, where they remained in mid-1987.
The Theory of “Limited Sovereignty” – A Flagrant Expression of the Imperialist Policy of the Soviet Revisionists
From Albania Today, 1972, 3
By Agim Popa, professor, specialist in the field of Marxist philosophy.
Life and facts testify with every passing day to the essentially chauvinistic and social-imperialist nature of the foreign policy of the present-day Soviet leadership. As comrade Enver Hoxha pointed out in his report delivered at the 6th Congress of the PLA, “the foreign policy of the Soviet revisionists is the great-Russian policy of the old czars, it has the same expansionist aim, it has the same objectives of subjugation and enslavement of the people” …
All this is concealed behind a great demagogic fuss to present the current Soviet foreign policy as the “most authentic expression” of the Leninist policy and proletarian internationalism. In this context a special place is occupied by the efforts to give a theoretical basis allegedly from the viewpoint of Marxism-Leninism, to the relations of economic, political and military subjugation which Soviet social-imperialism has imposed or is seeking to impose on the other so-called socialist countries, relations which at the present time are known by the name of “limited sovereignty”.
Although in words the Soviet revisionist chieftains are seeking to deny the theory of limited sovereignty, they persistently implement it in the whole practice of their relations in all fields – economic, political, military, etc., with the satellite countries that belong to CMEA and to the Warsaw treaty.
Complete Economic Subjugation Under the Mask of Internationalist Collaboration
In the economic field, what Soviet propaganda is attempting to present as relations of equal collaboration and fraternal internationalist aid, are in fact relations of economic subjugation of other countries to the Soviet Union. In theory and practice, the stand of the Soviet revisionist leadership on this question is anti-Marxist from top to bottom. Let us take the problem of so-called “aid”, about which the propaganda of the Soviet revisionists has deafened the ears of the whole world to the point of nausea. First, the Soviet propaganda gives absolute significance to the point of absurdity, to the role of the aid given by the Soviet Union to various countries in their struggle for socialism, thus denying the internal factor, which is decisive. The Soviet revisionists savagely attack the principle of self-reliance in revolution and in socialist construction; they present this as a “manifestation of nationalism”, allegedly in conflict with proletarian internationalism. But proletarian internationalism demands that the working class and the labouring masses of every country, under the leadership of the revolutionary Marxist-Leninist party, make the maximum efforts, mobilize all possibilities and potential resources, and do not wait for somebody to bring them ready-made freedom and socialism from abroad, as follows from the propaganda of the Soviet revisionists. Furthermore the consistent implementation of the principle of self-reliance is an essential condition for the safeguarding and strengthening of the economic and political independence of every socialist country. This was firmly proved by the experience of socialist Albania which, as comrade Enver Hoxha has pointed out, was completely successful in defeating the attacks of the revisionist blockade, for she has consistently adhered to this principle and has placed her economy on sound bases to enable it to walk on its own feet. Of course, the principle of self-reliance does not in any way exclude internationalist aid between the countries which stand faithfully on the positions of socialism, as well as between the revolutionary forces and progressive peoples of the whole world.
Second, the so-called “aid” which the Soviet revisionists claim to give to other countries, is given with political strings attached which impair the national independence and sovereignty of the countries receiving it and aims to place them under the economic domination of the Soviet Union. It is a fact that when the Party of Labour of Albania opposed the anti-Marxist stands of Khrushchev and his group at the Bucharest or the Moscow meeting, the Khrushchevite revisionists adopted extremely severe economic sanctions towards socialist Albania, and cut off all their aid and credits, while later they also organized a hostile blockade against her. While true internationalist collaboration and mutual aid exclude all kinds of conditions which impair, in the slightest degree, the national sovereignty of any socialist country, they must aim not at the weakening but at the strengthening of the economic and political independence of every one of them.
The propaganda of the Soviet revisionist chieftains and their supporters has a great deal to say about an “international socialist division of labour”, about “specialization and cooperation in the production of the countries of the socialist community”, etc. In the last two or three years in particular, they greatly publicized the so-called “complex programme of the further deepening and improvement of collaboration and development of the socialist economic integration of the CMEA member countries”, worked out and approved at the 23rd, 24th and 25th sessions of this organisation. They endeavour to substantiate this with the “objective tendency of the internationalisation of the economies of the countries of the world socialist system” and to present it as a new, higher stage in the field of economic relations and collaboration between them, as an initial practical application of Lenin’s idea of the “tendency of the creation of the world economy as a single whole which is regulated by the proletariat of all nations according to a unified plan”.
But what does this so-called complex programme of economic integration of the revisionist countries envisage and recommend? This can be summed up in brief in the following fundamental ideas: the passing from the stage of the predomination of bilateral exchange of commodities and credit aid, etc, as a stage “already overcome by life”, to that of direct many-sided collaboration in production and technical-scientific fields; the creation of “deep and stable ties” between national economies in the main branches of production on the basis of specialization and cooperation; the creation of the so-called infrastructure which includes common power transmission lines, the construction of international oil pipelines, the creation of a common depot for railway-wagons and a unified system of containers, etc.; the creation of international organisations according to specialized branches (for example “Intermetal”, “Interhim”, etc.)# the setting up of enterprises, plants and combines with joint investments and “on common interstate property” in the territories of various countries; the “coordination”, of national plans of economic development, the “coordination” of economic policy, “joint” economic prognosis, “joint” planning of various branches of industry and production; the creation of “coordinating” organs for planning, for the development of various branches of production, for trade and financial exchange, prices, etc.
What are the consequences and aims of such practices?
First and foremost, the unilateral development of the economies of other countries so that in everything – raw materials, technique and technology, fuel and markets to sell their commodities – they should be completely dependent on the Soviet Union, and serve the Soviet economy as a monopoly area for the export of Soviet capital and commodities, and as a source of profits.
The Soviet press speaks of the “mutual dependence” of the economies of the CMEA member countries. In reality, this dependence is completely one-sided because the Soviet Union is the only country among them which develops all the main branches of production on its own territory, and is not subject to “specialization”, whereas all the others are dependent on it in many vital branches and orientations of the development of the economy. Thus, the oil processing, oil-chemical and chemical enterprises of the CMEA member countries, except for Rumania, are working with Soviet oil which they get through the “Druzhba” pipeline, and are thus fully dependent on the Soviet Union for raw materials and fuel. In the same way the ferrous metallurgy enterprises in almost of all the CMEA member countries are operating, for the most part on the basis of raw material and coke supplied by the Soviet Union. It is a fact that although Hungary produces a large quantity of bauxites, they are not processed in Hungary but 2 or 3 thousand kilometres away, in the Soviet Union.
The Soviet Union not only gives aid and credits to other CMEA member countries, as the propaganda of the Soviet revisionists attempts one-sidedly to suggest, but also draws great profits from “integration”, which in many cases weigh on the shoulders of their partners. Thus, the various CMEA member countries are to make investments in the development of the Soviet oil and gas extracting industry, of the metallurgical industry, in the construction of oil and gas pipelines in order to export Soviet raw material, etc. But the main thing is that these investments serve the further increase of the economic dependence of the investing countries on the Soviet Union.
Further, an aim and consequence of the “complex programme of economic integration” is the strengthening of the Soviet control over the economic development of other CMEA member countries. The Soviet press speaks of the “mutual adaptation of economic structures” of the CMEA member countries. But it is evident that when speaking of “coordination” of the economic plans and policies it is not, of course, the Soviet economy which is adapted, let us say, to the economy of Mongolia or Bulgaria, but quite the opposite. Besides, the “coordinating” organs of CMEA are, in fact, becoming with every passing day super-state organs in the hands of the Soviet social-imperialists for interference in the domestic affairs of other countries, to keep the economies of these countries under their control.
The ultimate aim which Soviet social-imperialism is trying to achieve through “integration” is the complete subjugation and the economic annexation of its CMEA partners, the gradual merger of the economies of these countries into the Soviet economy. In this connection the Soviet press speaks, as of a not far distant prospect of a “rapprochement and unification (initially in some sectors) of the economic complex, as a prototype of the coming “world socialist cooperative” of the working people of various nations” and adds that it is the duty of the subjective political factors to speed up this “objective process” (see the article “Socialism in the system of international relations” published in the review “Voprosi fillosofii” Nr. 9, 1971). In the same way, the review “World economy and international relations” in the article “Theoretical heritage of V. I. Lenin and the economic integration of the socialist countries” published in the issue Nr. 4, 1971, writes that economic integration “arises on the basis of the very advanced mutual dependence of economic life, and means the interlacing the merger of the national economies into a unified reproduction complex”. While the review “Za rubezhom”, Nr. 28, 1970, in an article entitled “Fruitful course”, as proof that even the western press itself is compelled to admit that the measures taken by the 23rd session of CMEA for the further economic rapprochement of the member countries will have important economic and political consequences, quotes the newspaper “Financial Times” as saying that “the realisation of integration means that CMEA will become something more than a council of mutual economic aid, and will perhaps be able to unite a number of great national systems into a sound regional system”.
All this in essence recalls the theses of the Soviet revisionists, which they tried to impose on other countries through CMEA in 1964, concerning the so-called “interstate economic complexes” such as, according to their chauvinistic calculations, the area of the lower Danube, which would include almost half of the territory of Rumania and would be withdrawn from the jurisdiction of the Rumanian state, thus trampling under foot its national sovereignty and territorial integrity. Although it is being introduced in more camouflaged forms and at a more moderate tempo, the “complex programme of integration” which the Soviet revisionists are now noisily publicizing does not differ at all in content from the openly chauvinistic aims of the year 1964.
The references by the Soviet revisionist theoreticians to Lenin’s sayings about the tendency of the creation of a world socialist economy as a whole, directed according to a unified plan, are nothing but speculations. On the one hand Lenin was speaking about the world socialist system, while the Soviet Union and the other countries where the modern revisionists are in power, have long since ceased to be socialist countries. On the other hand, Lenin spoke of a coming historical epoch where socialism would have triumphed all over the world and when the process of the gradual integration of nations and of the elimination of national differences would begin.
It is clear that the creation of a world socialist system can develop only as a process of the birth and existence of sovereign socialist states, with their own national territories and with clearly defined state borders, with independent and balanced economies, based on socialist property which is administered by the representative organs of these national sovereign states, etc. As a consequence, the economic relations between socialist countries can be conceived only as relations between independent states and national economies, based on the principles of mutual internationalist collaboration and aid.
This is why the “integration” advertised by the Soviet social-imperialists, which aims at the loss of independence and economic submission of other countries to the Soviet Union, has nothing in common with the relations of proletarian internationalism.
Political Enslavement and Justification of Aggression – The Essence of the Theory of “Limited Sovereignty”
The main aim of the attempts of the Soviet social-imperialists to achieve the economic subjugation of the other revisionist countries is, through economic dependence, to keep them politically dependent on the Soviet Union. “The Council for mutual economic aid” – comrade Enver Hoxha has said – “has been transformed into a revisionist organisation of cooperation in industry and in many other branches of the economies of the member countries. In this organisation the Soviet revisionists dominate, and through it, in their hegemonistic interest, aim to exploit and control the economies of the other member countries, to compel them to develop in the directions the Soviet revisionists desire, binding the economies of the other countries in such a way that together with this sham socialist cooperation, they also dominate these countries politically”.
Some “more sincere” Soviet theoreticians do not conceal that so-called economic integration inevitably leads to the political integration of the revisionist countries, towards the creation in the future of an international political superstructure of these countries (see for instance the article by O. Bogomollov “The theoretical heritage of V. I. Lenin and the economic integration of the countries of socialism” published in the review “World economy and international relations”, Nr. 4, 1971). The author does not take the trouble to elucidate in detail what he means by “political integration”. But the relations of “limited sovereignty” that the Soviet revisionist chieftains have imposed on the other revisionist countries in the political and military fields, clearly show what it is about, and that Soviet social-imperialism has been long since implementing, and is still implementing, a series of strict measures for “integration”, that is, for the complete political and military submission of these countries to the Soviet Union.
“The theory of “limited sovereignty” – comrade Enver Hoxha said in his report delivered at the 6th Congress of the PLA – “is the theory of great power chauvinism and expansionism, the theory through which the new Soviet imperialists try to suppress any sovereignty of other peoples and to create for themselves the “sovereign right”, to interfere wherever and whenever they like. By denying others their sovereignty, they are trying to deny to nations and states that which they cherish most – freedom and independence, to deny their national individuality, the indisputable right to self-determination and independent development, the right to equality in international life and to active participation in world relations. By “limited sovereignty”, they seek to legalize the right of the more powerful to strangle the weak, of the greater to gobble up the small. It is the theory of the justification of imperialist aggression”.
According to the Brezhnevian concepts of “limited sovereignty”, the countries of the so-called “socialist community” do not enjoy the right to determine their foreign policy freely and in a sovereign way, but are compelled to obtain the approval of the Soviet social-imperialists in everything. These countries have no right to strive for a foreign policy independent of the Soviet Union and to establish diplomatic and economic relations with other countries without its consent. The aim of the Soviet social-imperialists is thus the transformation of the foreign policies of the other revisionist countries into an obedient appendage of the circumstances and zigzags of Soviet foreign policy.
Let us take for example the German question. The Soviet social-imperialists have for years been manipulating this question according to their own wishes without taking into consideration at all the sovereign right of the German Democratic Republic, unscrupulously sacrificing its national interests for the sake of their bargainings with West German imperialism. Significant in this respect is their agreement with Bonn on West Berlin, which flagrantly violates the sovereignty of the German Democratic Republic, and also caused the well-known incidents with Walter Ulbricht.
Typical too are the continuous threats of the Soviet social-imperialists towards Rumania and Yugoslavia who refuse to blindly follow and support the aggressive imperialist course of Soviet foreign policy, not to speak here of Albania and China which are waging a determined struggle against this course from revolutionary Marxist-Leninist positions.
Or let us recall the “arguments”, used by the Soviet imperialists to justify their aggression against Czechoslovakia. In the official article “Defence of socialism – a lofty international duty” published in “Pravda”, August 22, 1968, that is, two days after the occupation of Czechoslovakia, it was said that some leading Czechoslovak personalities “were beginning to reconsider a series of important principles of foreign policy”, that “in Czechoslovakia tendencies were emerging in support of a rapprochement with West Germany, and the strengthening of ties with her”, that “some personalities in Czechoslovakia were calling for her foreign policy to turn towards the West, to make it “more independent” of the policy of the Soviet Union and of the other socialist countries”, etc.
In reality, the Soviet social-imperialists were not concerned and could not be concerned by the fact that the Dubcek revisionist group had discarded socialist and internationalist principles of foreign policy, because they themselves have long-since betrayed these principles, have entered into criminal alliance with US imperialism and have turned the Soviet Union into a new imperialist state and a dangerous centre of international counterrevolution. They were concerned about something else: about the fact that the Dubcek group began to show too openly centrifugal inclinations, that it tried to escape the Soviet dictate in the field of foreign policy, in order to be free to make alliances with Western imperialism, or to manoeuvre between the latter and Soviet imperialism. This would not only shake the position of the Soviet social imperialists in Czechoslovakia, but would also be an incitement to centrifugal inclinations in other revisionist countries. As to the tendencies that appeared in Czechoslovakia supporting a rapprochement with West Germany, it is known that the Soviet revisionists themselves, more than 10 years ago established relations with this imperialist and revanchist country, while later on they concluded a series of agreements with it. Is this not a lively testimony to the limited sovereignty of the revisionist countries, partners of Soviet social-imperialism?
But the limited sovereignty of the revisionist countries which are under the Soviet dictate is not manifested only in the field of foreign policy. It includes also their domestic policies, which according to the chauvinistic concepts of the Soviet revisionist chieftains, must have the latter’s approval. According to these concepts in the revisionist countries of the Warsaw Treaty political, economic, social and other reforms cannot be carried out without first obtaining the approval of the Soviet leadership which has reserved to itself the right to allow or to prohibit them, judging from the viewpoint of its social-imperialist interests, and indeed to prevent them by all means, even resorting to military intervention, as occurred in the case of Czechoslovakia.
The Soviet revisionist chieftains go so far as to control or seek to control in the satellite revisionist countries the reports their partners will deliver at the congresses of their parties, or other important documents; they brutally intervene in their domestic affairs to dictate or approve the persons who should be at the head of the parties or governments in these countries, etc., etc.
Soviet propaganda is seeking to justify such arbitrary acts as, for example, the armed aggression against Czechoslovakia, with its alleged concern about the destiny of socialism in these countries. This is sheer demagogy, because the Soviet revisionists themselves have long since abandoned everything socialist in their own country and for years have been advancing on the road of capitalist restoration. The fact is that they are seeking to keep under their control the tempo and forms of capitalist restoration in various revisionist countries, so that this process may be carried out in conformity with the present interests of the Soviet social-imperialists and not create additional problems and difficulties for them within the country and in the face of foreign public opinion, as was the case with the frenzied course pursued by the Dubcek revisionist group in Czechoslovakia.
According to the social-imperialist concepts of “limited sovereignty” which the Soviet ruling clique is preaching, the revisionist member countries of the infamous Warsaw Treaty do not enjoy even the right of sovereign disposition over their national territories, while the Soviet militarists have the right, under the pretext of military manoeuvres in the framework of the Warsaw treaty, to enter and leave these countries with their armed forces as in their own land. Precisely the fact that the Czechoslovak side strove to avoid the entry of the Soviet troops to Czechoslovakia under the mask of “joint military exercises”, was used by the Soviet social-imperialist clique as one of its main arguments in undertaking the open military aggression against that country. In short, either you “willingly” accept the entry of troops into your territory, or occupation by violence awaits you.
This is the most original imperialist blackmail. According to this logic, France, for example/ would be denied the right to refuse to accept NATO troops for manoeuvres on her territory, while Rumania, under threat of aggression, would be compelled to open her borders and humbly accept the Soviet troops to lord it in her country and make the laws there.
After they failed in their efforts to subjugate their revisionist partners by “peaceful” means, the social-imperialists began to rely more and more on their military strength to achieve their aims. “The more the Kremlin chiefs push ahead in their expansionist plans, the more difficult their internal situation and their relations with their satellites become” – comrade Enver Hoxha has said – “the more their military adventurism increases, the more their armed aggression as a means to overcome the difficulties and contradictions comes to the fore”. The Warsaw Treaty organisation is their main instrument to realize this militarist course and to impose the relations of “limited sovereignty” on the satellite states.
Through this organisation, in which they are full rulers, the Soviet social-imperialists impose on their revisionist partners their political decisions, keep them under military control or exert pressure and blackmail, going as far as open aggression. In the framework of the Warsaw Treaty, under the pretext of “joint manoeuvres” (a “legal” way to interfere everywhere) or of the “arguments” they have imposed on others, besides openly occupying Czechoslovakia they have introduced their troops into, and are maintaining under silent occupation, the German Democratic Republic, Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria and Mongolia. What do the Soviet troops want in these countries? To defend “socialism”? But from whom? Here, too, from “counterrevolution” as in Czechoslovakia? Why does this “socialism” need to be defended by Soviet troops and why is it not defended by the peoples of these countries themselves? One of two things: Either we would have to think that the peoples of these countries are bent on “counterrevolution”, which would be a great absurdity, or it must be said that these peoples have no interest whatsoever in defending this kind of revisionist “socialism”; on the contrary, they are opposed to it, as was shown by the workers’ revolts of December 1970 in Poland, and the Soviet troops have been sent to suppress any people’s movement and keep under their control the revisionist regimes in power.
It is said that the Soviet troops in foreign countries, Czechoslovakia included, do not interfere in their domestic problems. This is the height of absurdity and cynicism because the Soviet social-imperialist chieftains themselves have said and still say that the sending of their troops to Czechoslovakia aimed allegedly to save “socialism” there from “peaceful counterrevolution”. Is this perhaps an “external question?”!
Or are the Soviet troops defending “socialism” in these countries from the outside imperialist danger? But if one follows this logic, these troops should stay there until world imperialism is smashed! And why do they not defend them with their missiles which, as the Soviet leaders say, are in a position to hit the enemy in its nerve centres in every point of the globe?!
In their attempts to eliminate all the obstacles to interference in other revisionist countries and also to completely subjugate militarily the revisionist cliques of these countries, the Soviet social-imperialists, through the Warsaw Treaty, are imposing on them the de facto liquidation of the national armies and their placing under the direct Soviet command, under the pretext of the creation of the so-called “special joint military units”. This is a further blow at the national independence of these countries, a flagrant expression of their “limited sovereignty”.
Such is the content of the concepts of the Soviet social-imperialist chieftains of the “limited sovereignty” of the “socialist” countries. But the imposition of such relations cannot fail to lead to a continuous deepening of contradictions in the revisionist fold and to increase the inclinations of the subjugated partners to escape the chauvinistic dictate of Soviet social-imperialism. What is crucial, the relations of limited sovereignty cannot fail to arouse the indignation and revolt of the peoples of these countries, There is no doubt that the feelings of freedom, independence, sovereignty and socialist national dignity which are always alive in them will play a first-rate role in the struggle of these peoples to overthrow the revisionist counterrevolution and return to the road of socialism. And this will mark the inevitable end of the rule of Soviet social-imperialism in these countries.