PROCLAMATION CALLING THE FIRST CONGRESS OF THE COMMUNIST INTERNATIONAL.
[Rosta, Official Telegraph Agency of the Bolsheviks, Feb. 24, 1919.]
COMRADES: The undersigned parties and organizations consider it indispensable to call the first congress of the new Revolutionary International. During the war and the revolution it has become clear not only that the old socialistic and social-democratic parties have gone bankrupt; and the Second International with them, and that the elements included among the old Social-Democracy (the so-called "Center") were incapable of active revolutionary activity, but also that already now the framework is ready for the real revolutionary international. The gigantic pace of the world revolution which gives rise to new problems, the danger that this revolution may be killed by the alliance of the capitalistic states, which organize a "League of Nations" against the revolution, the attempt of the “traitor-socialists” to gather, and after having “amnestied” each other, to assist their governments and the bourgeoisie again to betray the working class; and finally in view of revolutionary experience and for the purpose of internationalizing the whole course of the revolution, we were induced to take the initiative in placing on the order of the day the question of calling the revolutionary proletarian parties to an international congress.
AIM AND TACTIC.
According to our opinion, the new International must be based on the recognition of the following principles, which we present as the platform and which have been worked out in accordance with the programs of the "Spartacus Association" in Germany and the Communist (Bolshevik) Party in Russia:
1. The present is the period of destruction and crushing of the capitalistic system of the whole world, and it will be a catastrophe for the whole European culture, should capitalism with all its insoluble contradictions not be done away with.
2. The aim of the proletariat must now be immediately to conquer power. To conquer power means to destroy the governmental apparatus of the bourgeoisie and to organize a new proletarian governmental apparatus.
3. The new apparatus of the Government must express the dictatorship of the working class (and in certain places even the dictatorship of the half-proletariat in the villages, that is the peasant proletariat), that is, to persist in the systematic suppression of the exploiting classes and be the means of expropriating them. No false bourgeois democracy-this treacherous form of the power of a financial oligarchy-with its mere external equality - but a proletarian democracy able to realize the freedom of the working masses; no parliamentarianism, but the self-government of the masses through their elected organs; no capitalistic bureaucracy, but governing organs which have been appointed by the masses themselves, through the real participation of these masses in the governing of the country and the socialistic work of reorganization - such ought to be the type of the proletarian state. The Soviet power or a corresponding organization of government is its concrete expression.
4. The dictatorship of the proletariat must be the occasion for the immediate expropriation of capital and the elimination of the private right of owning the means of production, through making them common public property. The socialization (meaning doing away with private property and making it the property of the proletarian state, which is managed by the workers on a socialistic basis) of the large-scale industries and the central bodies organized by the same, including the banks, the confiscation of the capitalistic agricultural production, the monopolization of large-scale commerce; the socialization of the large buildings in the towns and in the country; the establishment of a workmen's government and the concentration of the economic functions in the hands of-the organs of the proletarian dictatorship - are the most essential aims of the day.
5. In order to protect the socialist revolution against external and internal enemies, and to assist the fighting proletariats of other countries, it becomes necessary to entirely disarm the bourgeoisie and its agents and to arm the proletariat.
6. The world situation demands immediate and as perfect as possible relations between the different groups of the revolutionary proletariat and a complete alliance of all the countries, in which the revolution has already succeeded.
7. The most important method is the mass action of the proletariat; including armed struggle against the Government power of capitalists.
ATTITUDE TOWARD SOCIALIST PARTIES.
8. The old International has been divided in three main groups: the frank Socialist-Chauvinists, who, during the whole imperialistic war, 1914-1918, supported the bourgeoisie and undertook the role of executioners of the laborers' revolution; the "Center", the theoretical leader of which is Kautsky, and which within itself contains mostly wavering elements, who are unable to follow any decided lines, but sometimes are clearly traitorous to the International; and finally the Left Revolutionary Wing.
9. Toward the Socialist-Chauvinists, who everywhere and especially on the most critical occasions appear with arms in their hands against the proletarian revolution, we can only advocate a struggle without quarter, and toward the "Center" such a tactic as would separate the most revolutionary elements from the rest by criticizing and exposing the leaders. It is absolutely necessary to see to it that the labor organizations at a certain stage of development are kept from being controlled by the "Center".
10. It is necessary to organize the revolutionary elements among the workers who have not as yet joined the socialistic parties, hut completely stand on the side of the proletarian dictatorship in the form which it has assumed in the Soviet system. Such are first of all the syndicalist elements of the workers.
11. Finally it is necessary to include all proletarian groups or organizations which, if they have not openly joined the Left Revolutionary movement show, however, tendencies in that direction.
12. We propose that in the Congress should participate representatives of the following parties, groups and movements (which have the right to full membership in the Third International):
(1) Spartacus-Association of Germany; (2) The Communist Party (Bolshevik) of Russia; (3) Communist Party in German Austria: (4) The Communist Party of Hungary; (5) The Communist Party of Poland; (6) The Communist Party of Finland; (7) The Communist Party of Esthonia: (8) The Communist Party of Lettland; (9) The Communist Party of Lithuania; (10) The Communist Party of White-Russia: (11) The Communist Party of the Ukraine; (12) The revolutionary elements within the Czech Social-Democracy: (13) The Social-Democratic Party of Bulgaria; (14) The Social-Democratic Party of Roumania; (15) The Left Wing of the Socialist Party of Serbia; (16) The Social-Democratic Left Party of Sweden; (17) The Social-Democratic Party of Norway; (18) The Socialist Workers' Party of Denmark; (19) The Communist Party of the Netherlands; (20) The revolutionary elements within the Workers' Party of Belgium; (21 and 22) Groups and organizations within the socialist and syndicalist movements of France, mainly solidary with Loriot; (23) Left Social-Democrats of Switzerland; (24) Socialist Party of Italy; (25) The left elements within the Socialist Party of Spain; (26) The left elements of the Socialist Party of Portugal; (27) The Socialist Party of Great Britain (especially adherents of MacLean's groups); (28) The Socialist Labor Party (S. L. P.) of England: (29) I. W. W. (Industrial Workers of the World) of England; (30) I. W. of Great Britain; (31) The revolutionary elements of “shop steward” movement of England; (32) The revolutionary elements of the labor organizations of Ireland; (33) Socialist Labor Party of America (S. L. P.); (34) The left elements of the Socialist Party of America (S. P.) (especially that group which is represented by Debs and the socialist propaganda association); (35) I. W. W. of America; (36) I. W. W. of Australia; (37) Workers International Industrial Union (W. I. I. U.) of America; (38) Socialistic groups in Tokio and Yokohama (represented by Katayama); (39) Socialistic International Youth.
THE QUESTION OF ORGANIZATION AND THE NAME OF THE PARTY.
13. The Third International's basis has been worked out so that in different parts of Europe groups and organizations of similarly thinking people have been formed which join the same program and practically follow the same tactics. This first of all applies to the Spartacans in Germany and the Communist parties in many other countries.
14. The Congress must lay the foundation of a common fighting organ, which will be a uniting link, and methodically lead the movement of the center for the Communist International, which subordinates the interests of the movement in every separate country to the common interests of the Revolution on an international scale. The concrete forms for the organizations, the representation, etc., are to be worked out at the Congress.
15. The Congress shall be called "The First Communist International Congress" of which the different parties will form the sections. Marx and Engels even considered the name "Social-Democrats" theoretically wrong, The humiliating bankruptcy of the old "International" demands a new name. In addition, the nucleus of the great movement is already formed by many parties, which have already taken the name of Communist.
In view of the above we propose that all affiliated parties and organizations take up, on the order of the day, the subject of calling an International Communist Congress.
With fraternal greetings,
THE CENTRAL COMMITTEE OF THE RUSSIAN COMMUNIST PARTY (LENIN, TROTSKY). THE FOREIGN BUREAU OF POLAND'S COMMUNIST WORKERS' PARTY (KARSKI).
THE FOREIGN BUREAU OF HUNGARY'S COMMUNIST PARTY (RUDNJANSKI).
THE FOREIGN BUREAU OF THE GERMAN-AUSTRIAN COMMUNIST PARTY (OUDO).
THE RUSSIAN BUREAU FOR THE CENTRAL COMMITTEE OF THE LE'ITISH COMMUNIST PARTY (ROSIN).
THE CENTRAL COMMITTEE OF THE FINNISH COMMUNIST PARTY (SIROLA).
THE ACTING COMMITTEE FOR THE FEDERATION OF THE REVOLUTIONARY BALKAN SOCIAL-DEMOCRATS (RAKOWSKY).
THE SOCIALIST LABOR PARTY OF AMERICA (REINSTEIN).