Translated by Petr Yakovlev
First, the USSR did not disintegrate, but it was destroyed. Secondly, the destruction of the USSR was the result of the restoration of capitalism in the country. Therefore, it is necessary to find out the reason for the victory of the counter-revolution in the USSR and the transition from socialism back to capitalism.
The reason is the ratio of opposites that gave rise to one or another phenomenon. The restoration of capitalism in the USSR is the overthrow of the dictatorship of the working class and the transfer of power into the hands of the bourgeoisie. Therefore, to establish the cause of the restoration of capitalism in the USSR means to reveal those opposites whose struggle was immanent to the dictatorship of the working class, and the victory of one of them turned the cause into a consequence, that is, led to the collapse of communism in the USSR and the destruction of the country.
The following is authentically known.
First, that the USSR arose, got stronger and won many victories as the state of unripe, lowest communism. Soviet society was in the first phase of communism. The essence of this stage consists of the construction of, actually, full, mature communism, the fight of communism against aggressive remnants of exploiter formations, the competition between communism and capitalism by a realization of superiority of new relations of production of communism over commodity-money antiquity, in replacement of spontaneity by consciousness, scientific character.
Secondly, that the factor, that is the cause, of the communist revolution, is Bolshevism as a scientific course of political thought and political practice, organizing a revolutionary subject — the working class — under the conditions of the necessary maturation of all objective prerequisites: the level of development of productive forces and the degree of their concentration. The final, state-monopoly phase of capitalism is a complete material preparation for the transition to communism, that is, the necessary maturation of objective prerequisites.
Thirdly, that in the historical period of transition from capitalism to full communism the role of subjective processes raises to a decisive one.
Fourthly, that a set of historical processes in the USSR after Stalin’s death indicated the movement of the Soviet society away from science, away from communism, on the way back to capitalism, so, communism after 1953 in the USSR objectively lost in the class struggle started in all spheres of society including the same fight within the Party.
When clarifying the reason for the restoration of capitalism in the USSR, first of all, it is necessary to recognize the primacy of politics over the economy in the period of the transition from capitalism to mature communism. In private property societies, the primacy of economic factors, the formation of which occurs spontaneously, regardless of the will of the people. People, in this case, not understanding the essence of the application of productive forces to the substances of nature, enter into production relations blindly. It follows that these relations are formed with the significant participation of primitive social instincts, reflexes, and material interests. The resulting social conflict at the dawn of the ages brought to life the systematic need for violence, that is, in a state that held onto public order. At the same time, various forms of ideological domination, the justification of private property, exploitation, and violence took root. Moreover, it was capitalist production — the highest type of exploitative production, having competition by its law, that became strongly dependent on the development of science. And with the accumulation of applied knowledge, prerequisites were formed for the final establishment of scientific truths in the field of social science, primarily in the field of cognition of production relations. Thus arose the scientific theory of building communism — a society in which production relations for the first time will fully meet the objective requirements of the productive forces.
The founders of Marxism also affirmed the primacy of politics over the economy during the transition from capitalism to communism. So, Engels wrote:
„If Barth believes that we have denied any reverse influence of political, etc., reflections of the economic movement on this movement itself, then he simply tilts at windmills. He should look only at Marx’s “18 Brumaire”, where it is almost only about the special role played by political struggle and events, of course, within their overall dependence on economic conditions; or see Capital, for example, the section on working day, which shows how decisive it is to have legislation, which is a political act, or a section on the history of the bourgeoisie. Why, then, do we fight for the political dictatorship of the proletariat if political power is economically powerless? Violence (that is, state power) is also an economic force!”(Letter to K. Schmidt, October 27, 1890).
Developing precisely this position, based on revolutionary practice, Lenin, smashing Trotsky and Bukharin, explained to the Party that
„politics cannot fail to have primacy over economics, forgetting this means forgetting the alphabet of Marxism” („Once again about trade unions, the current situation and the mistakes of comrades Trotsky and Bukharin“).
Hence it follows that the sphere of finding the reason for the restoration of capitalism in the USSR it is the area of functioning of the institute of the political power of the dictatorship of the proletariat.
The party is the leader of the state of the dictatorship of the working class, the leader in the system of the dictatorship of the working class. The party is the guiding force of the dictatorship of the working class. If the party loses credibility, loses the opportunity to give guidance on every important political, economic and cultural issue, the system of the dictatorship of the working class is destroyed. It is clear that in this case it would be the height of absurdity to look for the reasons for the restoration of capitalism in the base. It is also clear that bad leadership leads to a loss of credibility by a party and may ultimately cause the collapse of the dictatorship of the working class. However, the history of the CPSU’s bankruptcy showed that the institute of power in the USSR, apparently due to the old perception, was very strong even with such parsley as Gorbachev. The authority of the CPSU, despite all the blatant sabotage activities of Khrushchev and Khrushchevians, Andropov and his fosterlings, including Gorbachev, was still on top.
Therefore, if we consider politics as a sphere of the search for the cause, that is, the Party’s activity as the guiding force of the working class dictatorship, then it goes without saying that party theory, science — Marxism is primary in relation to politics, strategic goals, tactics, and daily work.
Communism arose as a science of society, gave us the goals of the class struggle in the form of a Marxist program, gave us the form of organization, gave us a method of taking into account concrete historical conditions, which connected the organization, originally consisting entirely of intellectuals, with the masses. Therefore, the whole communist policy, the entire practice of the dictatorship of the working class, if it wants to be victorious, is a product of Marxist theory, is the product of the development of a general line by Marxist theorists.
However, at the same time, history has shown us that Marxism is omnipotent only when it is correctly assimilated by at least one person in the leadership of the party, and the majority of its members strictly obey party discipline.
If we exclude the possibility of military defeat due to generalship or political mistakes, then we should not talk about any objective reasons for the crash of the USSR. Stalin (said) at the XVII congress:
„It is necessary to understand that the strength and authority of our Party-Soviet, economic, and all other organizations and their leaders have grown to an unprecedented degree. And precisely because their strength and prestige have grown to an unprecedented degree, now everything or almost everything depends on their work. The reference to the so-called objective conditions has no justification. After the correctness of the political line of the Party was confirmed by the experience of a number of years, and the readiness of the workers and peasants to support this line no longer causes doubts — the role of the so-called objective conditions was reduced to a minimum, while the role of our organizations and their leaders became decisive and exceptional. And what does it mean? This means that responsibility for our breakthroughs and shortcomings in work now falls on nine-tenths not on “objective” conditions, but on ourselves, and only on us“.
At the same time, the theoretical reasons for the political crisis of the dictatorship of the working class in one way or another are closely related to the principles of the Party’s organizational structure and the quality of the cadres. Lenin pointed out:
„It is impossible to distinguish between what is a political issue and what organizational. Any political question can be organizational and vice versa … It is impossible to separate mechanically political from organizational. The policy is conducted through the people and if other people write slips of paper, then nothing will come of it… It is impossible to separate organizational issues from policy“ (Speech at the XI Party Congress).
There were no objective internal reasons for the extinction of communism in the USSR.
So, at the revealing of the reason for the restoration of capitalism in the USSR, is extremely insufficient to list economic and even political reforms of the CPSU which as a result prepared a coup of the bourgeoisie. Careful consideration of the activities of Khrushchev, Kosygin, Andropov, Gorbachev, and Yakovlev allows us to make a conclusion that they put into practice the trial and error method.
The influence of Khrushchev on the crash of the USSR is connected more likely with the discredit of Marxism, with the ideological and theoretical undermining of the authority of Marxism, the scientific solidity theory and practice of Marxism, than with the transfer of MTS (“Machine and Tractor stations”) equipment to the collective farms or even the reform of 1957.
It should be noted that all Khruschev’s wrecking was carried out within the unique propaganda process — „dethronement of a cult of personality of I.V. Stalin“. Thus, Khrushchev „plowed up“ public consciousness, party ethics, turned upside down already ideologically sickly intellectuals, undermined the authority of communism and unity of the Communist Parties of the world. But this was still not enough for the restoration of capitalism in the USSR.
The fact that the legal ban of the CPSU occured with the consent of the Secretary General, the entire structure of the Politburo, the Central Committee and with complete inaction of the local organizations, suggests that the reason for the restoration of capitalism in the USSR lies in class defeat within the management of the CPSU. In fact — in treason.
But what is the reason that enemies of the people sat down right in the leadership of the CPSU?
After Stalin’s death, they in the CPSU forgot what opportunism is, forgot the objective law of the revolutionary struggle, about the intransigence of ideologies. In this way, fractionality was already considered to be some insignificant discrepancy in the understanding of Marxism, originality of views. And they forgot about opportunism in the CPSU solely because the CPSU itself went off into the swamp of this very opportunism with its ears.
The Leninist-Stalinist victorious period showed that the subjective factor of the revolution can be considered ripe if the leader at the head of the party owns Marxism and skillfully applies Marxism in organizational practice.
The post-Stalin period of the existence of the CPSU showed that if the Marxist party in the conditions of the capitalist environment is not working hard enough to educate in its midst the leaders of the Leninist-Stalinist level and cut, then the construction of communism slips and ends up the party degrades and collapses.
The discussions unleashed by the Trotskyists after Lenin’s death and the opportunist turn of the Communist Party after Stalin’s death proved that literally everything is determined by the presence of a competent leader, determines the direction of development of the party, and behind it the class, the state, and the whole society. Of course, Lenin and Stalin had loyal associates who rallied around them and thus multiplied tenfold by force. Stalin himself was a reliable employee of Lenin.
Thus, the cause of the restoration of capitalism in the USSR is the incompetence of the members of the CPSU, especially in its leadership, in the practical building of communism. In this case, in a historical sense, the factor of opportunism counteracted a factor of dialectical-materialist competence in the person of the leader. As long as Stalin was alive, the prerequisite for the restoration of capitalism was suppressed, and the building of communism took place in the USSR, but after Stalin’s death there was neither a leader nor a competent center, therefore the opportunism factor was first established, strengthened, and then won a victory.
The decapitated, brainless CPSU kept itself out of habit, according to the will of the working class, but the agents of imperialism shook its power, and thus capitalism in the USSR was restored. Economic reforms and in general all changes in the basis of the USSR served as the means of undermining the political power of the working class, as well as endless ideological diversions.
And democratic centralism was a way of multiplying and spreading opportunism within the Party, a way of seizing the leadership of the CPSU.
Lenin and Stalin in the organizational structure of the party applied a scientific approach to personnel and organizations, therefore they carried out the principle of the most severe science-based centralism.
After the death of Stalin, Khrushchev, Mikoyan, and others audited the established practice, rejected the Leninist-Stalinist theoretical legacy on the issue of organizational construction, and proclaimed party democracy. It is by voting for each other that the opportunists seize the leadership of all organizations.
Opportunism, which seized the leadership of the CPSU, should be presented from two sides.
First, in terms of theoretical content, this is tailism, economism, and vulgar economic determinism. Because it is precisely in the theoretical formulation of the stages passed, in the denial of the offensiveness of communism itself, in flirting with the form of capitalism, that is, in money, the opportunist adaptation of the working class in the interests of the bourgeoisie is rooted. Roughly speaking, the cultivation of proletarism, that is, the state of people as an appendage of capital, in all forms constitutes opportunism in its content.
Second, by its motivation and the folding of the ideological constitution – this is a consistent anti-Stalinism.
The main instigator and the theorist of anti-Stalinism was Trotsky. If we trace the movement of Trotsky’s political thought, then he almost always spoke in such a way as to appear as original as possible. His pre-October position could be described as consistent anti-Leninism, but without joining Menshevism in words. In the period up to 1924, Trotsky, on all important issues, always says the opposite of Lenin, actively goes into a separate fraction. In the period of the mid-1920s, Trotsky opposed Stalin and other ideological centers, and after Stalin’s victory over all opponents in the theoretical struggle, Trotsky now takes the position strictly opposite to Stalin’s. In many ways, this line of absolute ideological unscrupulousness is characteristic of all opportunism. To be opposed is the “ideological” basis of opportunism in the presence of a truly Marxist position.
The supporters of Khrushchev and Gorbachev were mostly motivated precisely as Stalin’s fierce opponents, they acted out of banal vindictiveness. Just as thousands of pest specialists, former landowners and kulaks were derailed by trains, blown up, broken, destroyed from completely worthless dirty ideas, so a mature opportunist in power is a synonym for dirty tricks, whimsical spoiler, little stinker.
The chronology of the descending line of communism in the USSR is as follows. After the death of Stalin, the enemies of communism disguised as communists established themselves in the leadership of the Party through democratic centralism. Stalin’s comrades, the Marxists, lost to Khrushchev and his group because they all ran into each other at a philistine, intriguing level.
Further, supporters of Khrushchev audited Marxism with the theory of the cult of Stalin’s personality, the theory of the collective mind of the party, the tactics of building communism by 1980, the moral code of the communist and other opportunistic acts, and turned the daily politics of the government into a sabotage of economic and ideological foundations of communist construction. Supporters of Khrushchev deliberately split the world communist movement to weaken it.
Consequently, in the period of Khrushchevism, the Trotskyists, who had penetrated the party leadership, shaken the power of the Party; the economic and political development of the USSR and the WTO (Warsaw Treaty Organization) countries was sent along a false anti-scientific path, the international communist movement was undermined and split; during the leadership of the party Brezhnev, these processes were inhibited; in the period of Andropov — Gorbachev, conscious, meaningful, active ideological and socio-economic preparation of the restoration of capitalism was carried out by the “seksot” (secret police agents) and renegades. In short, the work of Trotsky – Zinoviev – Bukharin – Khrushchev on the maturing of the preconditions for the restoration of capitalism in the USSR was continued.
But at the same time, all these measures were carried out, firstly, within the framework of the will and consciousness of the working class of the USSR at every historical moment, and secondly, despite the fact that the economic structure of the first phase of communism was replaced by the capitalist one. Thus, the Party and the state in their class nature remained communist, but their policies, that is, the development of ways and means was carried out unscientific, incorrectly, to the detriment of the real goal of building a communist society, and in the second half of the 1980s was completely aimed at destroying the country.
The process of revolution and the process of counter-revolution occur according to the dialectical-materialist law of the negation of negation. A political coup, regardless of whether it is revolutionary or counterrevolutionary, takes place simultaneously, and the objective and subjective prerequisites for it are shaped by the entire historical development over a relatively long time. The moment of the destruction of the Soviet working class is the political moment of turning it into a class of proletarians, that is, the moment of changing the essence of production relations, first of all, between the working people themselves. And one should not confuse the moment of legal fixation of the fact of a political coup with the moment of its real occurrence. For example, „voucherization“ only legally formalized the destruction of the working class. After the voucherization, the cumulative owners of all the means of production in the country de jure turned into owners only of their labour. But in order to step into capitalism, to move from the scattered facts of social injustice, exploitation by individual Soviet bourgeois to the legalized system of capitalist robbery, the bourgeoisie needed to establish its own political dictatorship in the country. And it is installed simultaneously.
The Soviet bourgeois and imperialist agents, including having made their way to the CPSU, organized a series of civil wars and mass pogroms in the 1980s, but could not shake the Soviet people into more than the construction of „market socialism“. Moreover, it was not only in the USSR. Neither in 1956 in Hungary, nor in 1968 in Czechoslovakia, nor in 1981 in Poland, nor in 1989 in China did the bourgeoisie succeed in establishing capitalism because they failed to succeed in political upheavals. Until 1991 and in the USSR, the troops were still used against the Democrats, but half-heartedly and shyly. Only having managed to organize a provocation called the State Emergency Committee, the bourgeoisie, almost overnight, took political power from the CPSU. After that, the security forces had already dispersed the left-wing demonstrations, and in October 1993 they carried out a mass shooting in the center of Moscow, thus proving that in August 1991, the capital immediately came to political power. Then the bourgeoisie finally shook up the administrative apparatus, established its own state with the appropriate legal and regulatory framework. So there was a restoration of capitalism in the USSR.
A. Redin, from the brochure „Causes of Restoration of Capitalism in the USSR“