Contribution of the Communist Party of Poland for the 21st IMCWP
100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist International.
The struggle for peace and socialism continues!
Izmir, 18-20 October 2019
The creation of the Communist International 100 years ago is one of the most significant events in the history of the workers' movement. It is a valuable experience. Ideas of the Third International remain live and actual. Our struggle against the power of the capital, imperialism and war continues.
The Communist International was created in the crucial moment for the revolutionary movement of the working class, when communist parties were created in many European countries and on other continents as a result of the revolutionary wave after the victory of the October Revolution. There was an urgent need for international cooperation. The Communist International became an important centre of organisation of the revolutionary movement, coordinating efforts of the working class on the national level.
At the beginning of the 1920's situation deteriorated, when the revolutionary wave collapsed. The revolutions in Hungary and Germany failed. The working class in these countries was defeated due to the lack of coordinated action. The bourgeoisie was organising its common front against socialism. The main powers – Great Britain, France, Germany, even though they fought each other during the Great War formed a coalition to stop the revolution.
When fascism came to power in Italy and Germany as a result of the capitalist crisis the International had to face this threat. The reactionary movement was backed by the bourgeoisie to defeat the working class and save capitalism from the huge crisis. Parties affiliated to the International had to organise resistance of the working class. The failure in this confrontation led to the slaughter of the second world war.
Now we are facing similar tendencies of militarism and nationalism. The capital imposes its rule by imperialism and wars. The rising number of armed conflicts and aggressions is the result of the inter-imperialist rivalry for resources and power. The main players of this imperialist game are NATO countries led by the US and allied reactionary regimes around the world. Aggressions against Yugoslavia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Syria are only a few examples of enslaving populations and exploiting resources of the conquered regions. The other side of this rise of militarism is NATO's advance in Eastern Europe and the new arms race. Huge military companies profit from the rising military expenditures imposed by the Alliance on the member states.
Today we are facing the consequences of the crisis that started over 10 years ago. Some economies managed to recover but at the cost of workers. The widely implemented strategy to liberalise labour laws and to dismantle the social gains of the working class was widely applied by the capital during the crisis. "Flexibility" became the key term imposed by the so-called reformers. They always tend to burden the working class with the costs of the crisis initiated by the capital and inscribed into its very nature. More precarious jobs and work flexibility were meant to guarantee that profits of the capitalists be preserved at the cost of salaries.
The main obstacle to the organisation of social resistance is the low consciousness of the working class, subjected to decades of capitalist propaganda. Workers are being divided and played against themselves by the nationalists. The extreme right movements use social rhetorics aimed to direct social anger against minorities, migrants and foreigners - anyone - superimposing fake or secondary identities to cover-up the one division that counts: the one based on the class.
The most severe repressions by the capital and nationalists are directed against the communists in particular. Outrageous proclamation of the European Parliament equating communism with fascism is an example of this historical policy aimed at the destruction of the memory of achievements of the socialist states and victory over nazism in 1945. In many countries, communists face increasing persecution. The communist parties are banned in the Baltic states, Ukraine and many other countries across the globe. Reactionary governments are afraid of the ideas that oppose the power of the capital and exploitation of the workers.
Communist Party of Poland is facing threat of illegalisation. Members of the editorial board of the party's newspaper „Brzask” are on trial for publishing articles about communism. This trial has been going on for four years. We managed to won in the regional court, but the prosecutor demanded from the court to condemn us. The district court agreed with the prosecutor and decided about restarting the case. We are in front of the new trial. There are also new attempts to ban communist activity by the law. In June Polish parliament voted the change of the penal code, which will be much more represive. One of the amendments introduces the ban on the communist activity, promotion of the communist ideology and forbids the possession of anything – including writings or artefacts – with the communist content or symbols. Introduction of the new law, what is expected soon, will make a serious problem for our activity and create danger for existence of our party.
From the history of the Communist International we should draw valuable conclusions. International cooperation plays a key role in the communist movement. The main issues cannot be solved on the national level. There is a need for the international platform to share experience, information and to coordinate the activities. The principle of internationalism shall never be abandoned because we are fighting global capitalism and imperialism.