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(en) Hungary, Bukharin and anarchism by Barricade [anarchist] Collective, June 2005

Date Sat, 04 Jun 2005 07:32:45 +0300

To: <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Subject: Hungary, Bukharin and anarchism by Barricade [anarchist] Collective, June 2005

The bolsheviks could never bear if the proletariat organized itself
independently of them. Each bolshevik ?brains trust? had written
his inquisitory report about his understanding of anarchism. The
denunciations reach from Lenin to Bordiga. Their absurd
accusations and views feed on the same bourgeois rubbish-shoot,
on the museum of the dead ideologies. When they took the power,
they started to take their theories seriously, and as ?brave
Marxists? they began to act with the army behind them. This led to
the partial liquidation of the proletarian movement. The anarchist
movements in Russia had been unorganized and divided (from the
Kropotkinists to the syndicalists), but in the fire of attacks they
slowly began to recover counciousness. At first, most of them had
marched together with the bolsheviks, but when the spectres of the
Kremlin started to nationalise and established the Cheka, they were
frightened and played alarm. An anonymous anarchist pamphlet
from 1918 argues this way: ?Bolshevism proves day by day, step by
step, that state power has inalienable features; it can change its
label, its ?theory? and its servants, but in the essence, it takes
merely a new form of power and despotism.? At time of the
Brest-Litovsk conclusion of peace, the divergences became even
sharper. The anarchists opposed the conclusion of peace, they
answered to the critiques of Lenin: ?the defence of the revolution
has to be done by partisan units and by the organized masses of the
people, and not by the official armies?. On February the 23rd, the
anarcho-communist revolutionary Alexander Ge made a speech in
the assembly of the Central Executive Commitee of the Soviets,
where he said: ?Anarcho-communists propagate terror and partisan
war on both fronts; it?s better to die for the world revolution, than
living longer as a result of the German imperialist pact.? In front of
the capital?s domination, the bolshevik power ?capitulated? ? in the
reality, he fulfilled his mission. The anarchists started to organize
irregular troops. In 11th and 12th of April, the bolsheviks occupied
the anarchist headquarters. The units of the Cheka clashed with
the anarchist proletarians, whose press was banned, and whose
activists were massacred or shoved into clink. According to the
anarchists, the bolsheviks were traitors, this blindless costed to the
lives of several thousand comrades? The bolsheviks didn?t betray
anything, because their party had never stood on the side of the
revolution, and the class-fighter movement wasted a lot of energy
and time until it clarified its stand towards the bolshevik party.
Everywhere in the world, several millions of proletarians landed on
the airports of bolshevism, but shortly, they could feel its ?good
deeds? on their skin? ?Lenin built its October throne on our bones?
? realized so many people after. Nothing proves better the
plasticism (and the capacity of self-adaptation) of bolshevism, than
the fact, that at the time of the conclusion of peace in Brest, its
left-wing fractions came into antagonism with the leadership.
Bukharin and the leftists around the Communist journal (Osinsky,
Smirnov etc.) stood on the side of the revolutionary war, they
regarded the conclusion of peace as a betrayal of the world
revolution. The leftists revolted always within the bolshevik
frameworks, and didn?t get out from the walls of bolshevism. So,
Bukharin at first had disputed, had upheld his opinion for a time,
then he surrendered and ? becoming an ideologist of the NEP ? he
was heading to disaster. During the bolshevik horror of the 30?s, in
his inquisition process he became a victim of his own system,
playing the role of a miserable clown. The counter-revolution
devours its children?
Bukharin wrote his article ?Anarchy and scientific communism?
in 1918, during his ?radical? period. In it, he is worthy of his
Marxist predecessors, who were only able to qualify the anarchists
as petty-bourgeois, harmful, bourgeois-minded individualists. This
article begins with the same. In the social-democratic sanctuary,
the abusing of the anarchists occupies a special place and has a
special function. As we have sketched out, this led directly to their
harassment, and the anarchist militants came into conflict with the
new ruling class?
We reject the debates of the First International as attempts to
divide the movement, we reject this ?noble and disgusting?
tradition, which was bequeathed by the true revolutionary camp to
the posterity, and which was maintained by the social democracy
and the Proudhonist-Kropotkinist currents. During the First World
War it became clear, that these two are the same: the left-wing
aid-de-camp of the bourgeois imperialist war. The exceptions were
the German-Dutch internationalists and those bolsheviks, who
formulated the slogan of ?revolutionary struggle against the war?.
But as we know, what Lenin and his comrades had thought to be
revolutionary in 1915, was abandoned by them in 1918 as useless
for the maintaining of their power. The times had changed: it?s not
the same to fight for the gaining of power and for its maintaining
(are they really different? they need different political behaviour,
different tactics, but the essence is the same). The bolshevik
poundmasters did everything to break the struggle of our class.
While in 1918 Bukharin is chattering about the internationalist
struggle, he writes this article. He recalls the virtual contradictions
between communism and anarchism ? virtual, because his
deductions are idealist, and he builds his views on theory? His
picture of anarchism is false and mendacious, even if the
divergences in the movement really existed and exist, and only a
few militants recognized the real identity beyond the egoist division
(Joseph Dietzgen, Domela Nieuwenhuis and Ervin Szabó, for
example). Bukharin ? as an ?excellent professor of dialectics? ?
examines everything from a theoretical point of view, and his ideas
will be denied soon by the events in Russia, which he can see with
his own eyes. And they were already denied by those proletarian
movements, which could swing over the captious and merely
theoretical debates. (It is enough to mention here the quite
unknown Radical Socialists in Hungary, the Chicago-based
International Working Peoples? Association, the struggle of the
proletarian militants around Ricardo Flores Magón or some
elements of the IWW.) The denial in Russia was partially the
struggle of the Makhnovtshina itself, against both the white
guardist and the bolshevik section of capitalism. This proletarian
army ? with its strength, its inventiveness, its mistakes and its will
of centralization ? fought for long against the overwhelming
numerical superiority. There and then it was the Makhnovtshina,
which most solidly represented the party of the proletariat, those
part of our class, which managed to organize itself into a fighting
unity. The proletarian dictatorship started to come to itself, without
party membership cards and without ?everlasting assemblies?.
Without top and bottom, without leaders and those being led.
Breaking the bolshevik handcuffs of servitude and submission.
This is still not realized by the most of the Marxists. Why? Because
they would confront their own bureaucratic dogmas and the pure
fact that collaterally with their vision, there were real revolutionary
events. The article is also interesting from this point of view.
Bukharin recalls the usual clichés about the state and revolution,
the proletarian dictatorship and power, about the role of the
proletariat as the new ruling class. But who is the enemy, if the
class relations are already abolished? Proletarian dictatorship
means the abolition of class relations, so against whom will be the
proletariat the ruling class? The bolsheviks had also an answer to
this question: ?proletarian dictatorship? meant for them the seizure
of power over the productive forces by the bolshevik party, and by
taking the leadership of the capitalist production to their own
hands, by exploiting the proletariat, they maintained the
domination of capital. But this has nothing to do with the
dictatorship of the proletariat, this is nothing else than democracy:
the dictatorship of labour, commodity and value over our lives! In
his article, the party?s ?devil of a fellow? presents the anarchists as
collaborators of the bourgeoisie ? justifying their harassment. Then
we can hear such charges which were used also by other social
democrats: the anarchists have become the hotbed of the ?bands of
expropriators? (see for example those excellent comrades,
anarchist groups, who really exacted a ransom from their capitalist
masters and/or killed them, who from the beginning of the 1900?s
plundered all over Ukraine and Belorussia, never worked, and
distributed among the proletarians the food, clothes and other
necessary stuffs which they had obtained in the actions). So he
accuses the starving and spoiled of private expropriation. ?Comrade
Bukharin?, according to you, is that revolutionary? Really, survival
in itself is not revolutionary ? but it still is, because this acts show,
that the capitalist relations didn?t manage to exile us to the coffin.
And the ?expropriators? used up jointly what they had taken back
from the bourgeoisie, and they could continue and spread the
struggle. (In 1904, the newspaper of the Bund reports that the
anarchists of Belostok have become spectres for the local
Within the circumstances of Hungary, we criticize quite often the
backwardness of the Hungarian revolutionaries. But there are
important exceptions. Ervin Szabó, the Marxist-anarchist wrote an
article about Marx and Bakunin, in which he emphasizes the
identity of the ?Marxian communism? and the ?anarchism of
Bakunin?. This contribution was written among the ?provincial
conditions? of Hungary in 1908. Bukharin writes a
counter-revolutionary broshure in the middle of the revolution, and
the ?radical of Brest? incites to fight against anarchism. He knew
that revolutionary struggle is a big ?rival? for them. We finish our
preface with a comradely cry from this period, which can also be a
motto of our revolutionary struggle in the future:
Arise then people!
Destroy the parasites who torment you!
Destroy all who oppress you!
Create your happiness yourself? Do not trust your fate to anyone?
Arise people! Create Anarchy and the Commune!
(Vestnik Anarkhii, 14 July 1918)

Barricade Collective, June 2005

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