Letter from Ho Chi Minh to the Indochinese Communist Party
Kwelin, May 10, 1939
Dear comrades: In the past, in my opinion and that of a good number of comrades, Trotskyism has seemed a matter of struggle between the trends within the Chinese Communist Party. So they almost were not paying attention. But shortly before the outbreak of the war, more precisely since the end of 1936, and especially during the war, the criminal Trotskyist propaganda has opened our eyes. Then we started to study the problem. And our study has led us to the following conclusions:
1 – The problem of Trotskyism is not a struggle between the trends within the Chinese Communist Party. Because between Communists and Trotskyists there is no tie, absolutely no tie. It is a matter that concerns the whole people: the fight against the country.
2 – The fascist Japanese and foreign fascists know. So, looking to try to create disagreements, to mislead public opinion and undermine the popularity of the Communists, making people believe they are communists and Trotskyists in the same field.
3 – The Chinese Trotskyists (like the Trotskyists in other countries) do not represent a group, much less a political party. They are nothing more then a criminal gang, the hounds of Japanese fascism (and of international fascism).
4 – In all countries, the Trotskyists gave good nicknames to mask their dirty work of bandits. For example, in Spain, their names are Workers’ Party of Marxist Unification (POUM). Did you know that it is they who are the nests of spies in Madrid, Barcelona and elsewhere in the service of Franco? It is they who organized the famous “fifth column,” agency of the army intelligence of the fascist Italians and Germans. In Japan, they are called Marx-Engels-Lenin League (MEL). The Japanese Trotskyists attract young people to their league, then reported them to the police. They seek to penetrate the Japanese Communist Party in order to destroy it from within. In my opinion, the French Trotskyists, now organized around the Proletarian Revolution Group (1) set a goal to sabotage the Popular Front. On this subject, I think you are better informed than I am. In our country of China [referring to Indochina, N. E.], Trotskyists are grouped into formations like La Lutte, War against the Japanese, Culture and Red Flag.
5 – The Trotskyists are not only enemies of communism, but also enemies of democracy and progress. They are the most infamous traitors and spies. Maybe you have read the indictments of the processes in the Soviet Union against the Trotskyists. If you have not read them, I advise you to do so and to read them to your friends. It is a very useful reading. It will help them see the true disgusting face of Trotskyism and Trotskyists. Here, allow me to extract some passages relating directly to China. The true repugnant face of Trotskyism.
Before the court, the Trotskyist Rakovsky (2) confessed that in 1934 when he was in Tokyo (as representative of the Soviet Red Cross) a high character of the Japanese government had told him: “We have the right to expect from the Trotskyists a change in strategy. I will not go into details. I only wanted to say that we expect from the Trotskyists, actions that favor our intervention in the affairs of China.” Responding to the Japanese, Rakovsky said: “I will write to Trotsky about this.” In December 1935, Trotsky sent to his supporters in China, instructions that repeatedly emphasized that phrase: “Do not create obstacles to the Japanese invasion of China.” And how have Trotskyists in China acted? They are in a hurry to know, is it not true? But, beloved comrades, I can not respond more in my next letter. Do not you recommend me to write short letters? Hope to see you soon.
1939: About Trotskyism (Letter to the Communist Party of Indochina)
(1) Revolución Proletaria: Newspaper published by a group of French revolutionary syndicalists.
(2) Revolutionary leader in the Balkans before the First World War, Ukrainian Prime Minister from 1919 to 1923, was then Soviet ambassador in Paris and one of the founders of the Left Opposition. Expelled from the CPSU in 1927 continued his work to capitulate in 1934.
Digital edition of Andreu Nin Foundation, August 2005