An Open Letter

To the Communist Party of Yugoslavia

The following letter by the Inter­na­tional Secretariat of the Fourth Inter­na­tional was published in the newspaper of the American Socialist Workers Party, the Militant, 26 July 1948.

Continued from left column

Now you are in a position to understand, in the light of the infamous campaign of which you are the victims, the real meaning of the Moscow Trials and of the whole Stalinist struggle against Trotsky­ism.

You hold in your hands a mighty power if only you summon enough strength to persevere on the road of the socialist revolution and its program. This road is also the road of independence from the bureau­cratic apparatus of Moscow. Looking for a way out are tremendous forces in the entire world labor move­ment—now caught in a vise between im­pe­rialism led from Washington on the one side, and on the other, the Soviet bureau­cracy in the Kremlin, interested solely in keeping its own privileged caste interests in Russia.

Keep up your fight! Deepen the significance of your struggle with Moscow and its inter­na­tional machine! Do not yield to imperialist pressures! Establish a regime of genuine workers’ democracy in your party and in your country! Thereby you will contribute immensely to the rebirth of the in­ter­national workers’ movement.

The Inter­na­tional Secretariat of the Fourth Inter­na­tional, the organization which unites around its program of Bolshevism and Leninism 35 sections on the five continents, wants to address itself in this our first message to you not concerning those things about which we must be critical of you with regards to your past and more recent course. We wish rather to take note of the promise in your resistance—the promise of victorious resistance by a revolutionary workers’ party against the most monstrous bu­reau­cratic machine that has ever existed in the labor movement, the Kremlin machine.

We shall presently address to you and to your Congress and to all Yugoslav Communists an open letter in which we shall treat in detail our point of view on the historic meaning of your conflict with Moscow and its Cominform.

Long Live the Yugoslav Socialist Revolution! Long Live the Proletarian World Revolution!

Inter­na­tional Secretariat of the Fourth Inter­na­tional


July 1, 1948

To the Central Committee and to All Members of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia


We want to let you know that the attention of the entire inter­na­tional revolutionary workers’ move­ment is today centered on the conflict in which you have, for some time, been pitted against the Central Committee of the Russian Communist Party and the Cominform.

The official press of the Communist parties is seeking to engulf you in a flood of slanders and insults. Their conduct is a good example of how pro­le­tar­ian democracy is dragged in the mud by these people who operate from Moscow the entire inter­na­tional machine which is at the service of the Soviet bureauc­racy.

But we are not in the least duped by this system of slander campaigns which has in the past destroyed so many precious forces in the labor movement. Because under the worst difficulties, we have never ceased for one moment, ever since Lenin died, to continue his struggle in Russia and in the entire world for the world communist revolution, against capitalist and imperialist reac­tion, and against the Soviet bu­reau­cracy which usurped Lenin’s party and the whole Communist Inter­na­tional.

We know with what sinister inflexibility the bureau­cratic machine in Moscow tries to nip in the bud every aspiration of independence or even a sign of a critical attitude toward itself. This Soviet bureau­cracy has nothing in common with the Bolshevism of Lenin and the genuine defense of what still remains of the October conquests in the Soviet Union. The struggle—which has, since 1927, destroyed in Russia the entire Old Guard of the Bolshevik Party of the days of the October Revolution—was led by the Thermidorians of the Russian Revolution, who were able temporarily to triumph over the pro­le­tar­ian revolutionary wing of Russian Bolshevism.