50 years ago: The real causes of the Second World War

Printer-friendly version

The text we are publishing here is a part of the report on the International Situation presented and debated at the Conference of the Gauche Communiste de France (GCF), held in July 1945 in Paris. Today, when the world bourgeoisie is enthusiastically commemorating the high deeds of the victory of 'democracy' over Hitlerite fascism - which is supposed to be the sole reason for the second world war - it is necessary to remind the working class not only of the true imperialist nature of this bloody butchery which left 50 million dead and piles of smoking ruins all across Europe and Asia, but also of the real significance of the capitalist 'peace' which followed it.

Such was the aim that this small minority of revolutionaries gave itself at this Conference, by showing, against all the lackeys of the bourgeoisie, from the Socialist Parties and the Communist Parties to the Trotskyist groups, that under capitalism in its imperialist phase, 'peace' is just an interval between wars, whatever labels these wars might adorn themselves with.

From 1945 to this day, the innumerable localized armed conflicts, which have already left at least as many dead as the 1939-45 World War, the world economic crisis which has lasted for 20 years and the crazy acceleration of the arms race, have amply confirmed these analyses. The perspective put forward by these comrades is more valid than ever: proletarian class struggle leading to communist revolution as the only alternative to a third world war that would threaten the very survival of humanity.


Report on the international Situation

Gauche Communiste de France (Left Communists of France): July 1945



I. War and Peace

War and peace are two moments of the same so­ciety; capitalist society. They do not appear as mutually exclusive historical opposites. On the contrary, war and peace under capitalism are complementary, indispensable to each other, suc­cessive phases of the same economic system.

In the epoch of ascendant capitalism, wars (whether national, colonial or of imperial con­quest) represented an upward movement that ripened, strengthened and enlarged the capital­ist economic system. Capitalist production used war as a continuation by other means of its po­litical economy. Each war was justified and paid its way by the opening up of a new field for greater expansion, assuring further capitalist development.

In the epoch of decadent capital, war, like peace, expresses this decadence and greatly ac­celerates it.

It would be wrong to see war as negative by definition, as a destructive shackle on the de­velopment of society, as opposed to peace, which would then appear as the normal and positive course of development of production and soci­ety. This would be to introduce a moral concept into an objective, economically determined pro­cess.

War was the indispensable means by which capital opened up the possibilities for its fur­ther development, at a time when such possibil­ities existed and could only be opened up through violence. In the same way, the capitalist world, having historically exhausted all possibil­ity of development, finds in modern imperialist war the expression of its collapse. War today can only engulf the productive forces in an abyss, and accumulate ruin upon ruin, in an ever-accelerating rhythm, without opening up any possibility for the external development of production.

Under capitalism, there exists no fundamental opposition between war and peace, but there is a difference between the ascendant and deca­dent phases of capitalist society (and in the relation of war to peace), in the respective phases. While in the first phase, war had the function of assuring an expansion of the market, and so of the production of the means of con­sumption, in the second phase, production is es­sentially geared to the means of destruction, ie to war. The decadence of capitalist society is expressed most strikingly in the fact that, while in the ascendant period, wars had the function of stimulating economic development, in the decadent period economic activity is essentially restricted to the pursuit of war.

This does not mean that war has become the aim of capitalist production, since this remains the production of surplus value, but that war becomes the permanent way of life in decadent capitalism. If war and peace have never ex­pressed an opposition which can be identified with the opposition between classes, still less in the present epoch can the proletariat make 'peace' a platform for its revolutionary struggle against decadent capitalism.

To the extent that the alternative of war or peace is not simply designed to deceive the proletariat, to lull its vigilance and to make it quit its class terrain, this alternative expresses only the apparent, contingent, momentary basis for the regroupment of the imperialist constellations with a view to new wars. In a world where zones of influence, markets for the disposal of products, sources of raw materials, and coun­tries where labor-power can be super-exploited are definitively divided amongst the great impe­rialist powers, the vital need of the young, less favored imperialisms clash violently with the interests of the older, more favored imperi­alisms, and are expressed in bellicose and ag­gressive policies aimed at winning by force a new division of the world. The imperialist 'peace' bloc in no way represents a policy based on a more humane, moral concept, but simply the intention of the more well-heeled imperi­alisms to defend by force the privileges ac­quired in previous acts of banditry. 'Peace' for them in no way means a peacefully developing economy - impossible under capitalism but methodical preparation for the inevitable armed competition and, at the right moment, the mer­ciless crushing of competing imperialisms.

The working masses' profound aversion to war is all the more exploited in that it offers a magnificent terrain for the mobilization for war against the enemy imperialism - which is por­trayed as the instigator of war.

Between the two wars, Anglo-Russo-American imperialisms used the demagogy of 'peace' as camouflage for a war they knew to be in­evitable, and as a way of ideologically preparing the masses for this war.

The mobilization for peace is an expression of conscious charlatanism on the part of all the lackeys of capital and, at best, a mirage, the empty and impotent wail of the petit-bour­geoisie. It disarms the proletariat by presenting it with that most dangerous of illusions - a peaceful capitalism.

The struggle against war can only be effec­tive and purposeful when it is indissolubly tied to the revolutionary struggle for the destruc­tion of capitalism. Against the deceitful alterna­tive of war or peace, the proletariat sets the only alternative posed by history: Imperialist war or proletarian revolution.

II. Imperialist war

On the eve of the war, the International Bureau of the Communist Left made the mistake of see­ing it above all as the direct expression of the class struggle, a war of the bourgeoisie against the proletariat. It denied, completely or partly, the existence of inter-imperialist antagonisms exacerbating and determining the world holo­caust. Starting from the incontestable truth that there are no new markets to conquer, and hence that war is ineffectual as a means of resolving the crisis of overproduction, the IB arrived at the incorrect and simplistic conclusion that im­perialist war was no longer the product of cap­italism divided into warring states, competing for global hegemony. Capitalism was presented as a solid and unified whole, which has recourse to imperialist war with the sole aim of mas­sacring the proletariat and blocking the rise of the revolution.

The fundamental error in the analysis of the nature of imperialist war was compounded by a second mistake in the appraisal of the balance of class forces at the moment when war broke out.

‘The era of wars and revolutions' does not mean that the development of war corresponds to the development of revolution. These two courses, though their source lies in the same historical situation of capitalism's permanent cri­sis, are nevertheless essentially different, and the relationship between them is not directly reciprocal. While the unfolding of war becomes a factor directly precipitating revolutionary con­vulsions, it is never the case that revolution is a factor in the outbreak of imperialist war.

Imperialist war does not develop in response to rising revolution, quite the reverse. It is the reflux following the defeat of revolutionary struggle - the momentary ousting of the menace of revolution - which allows capitalism to move towards the outbreak of a war engendered by the contradictions and internal tensions of the capitalist system.

The incorrect analysis of the nature of impe­rialist war must lead, fatally, to presenting the moment of the outbreak of war as the moment of revolutionary upsurge, and inverting the two moments, giving a false understanding of the existing balance of forces.

The absence of new outlets and new markets where the surplus value embodied in products made during the productive process can be realized, opens up the permanent crisis of capi­talism. The shrinking of the exterior market has as a consequence the restriction of the interior market. The economic crisis continues and grows.

In the imperialist epoch, the final elimination of isolated producers and groups of small or middle producers by the victory and monopoly of the large concentrations of capital, the trusts and cartels, corresponds on an international level to the elimination of small states or their complete subordination to the few great imperi­alist powers that dominate the world. But just as the elimination of small capitalist producers· doesn't do away with competition, which grows from small struggles scattered on the surface to gigantic struggles on the same scale as the concentration of capital, so the elimination of small states and their enslavement by four or five monster imperialist powers doesn't mean any lessening of inter-imperialist antagonisms.

On the, contrary, these antagonisms are con­centrated, and what they lose in number and extent, they gain in intensity and their shocks and explosions shake capitalist society to its foundations.

The more the market contracts, the more bitter become the struggle for sources of raw materials, and for the mastery of world market. The economic struggle between different capi­talist groups concentrates more and more taking on its most finished form in struggles between states. The aggravated economic struggle between states can only be finally resolved by military force. War becomes the sole means, not of resolving the international crisis, but through which each state tries to overcome its problems at the expense of its rivals.

The momentary solutions found by individual imperialisms in economic or military victories have the effect not simply of worsening the sit­uation of opposing imperialisms, but of still further aggravating the world crisis, and of de­stroying huge quantities of the values built up over decades and centuries of social labor.

Capitalism in the imperialist epoch is like a building where the construction materials for the upper stories are taken from the lower ones and the foundations. The more frenetic the up­ward building, the weaker becomes the base supporting the whole edifice. The greater the appearance of power at the top, the more shaky the building is in reality. Capitalism, compelled as it is to dig beneath its own foundations, works furiously to undermine the world econ­omy, hurling human society towards catastrophe and the abyss.

"A social formation does not die until all the productive forces it opened up are developed," said Marx, but this doesn't mean that it will disappear of itself once its mission is over. For this to happen, a new social formation corre­sponding to the state of the productive forces, and able to open the way to their development, must take over the direction of society. In do­ing so, it throws itself against the old social formation, which it can only hope to replace through struggle and revolutionary violence. If it survives, the old formation retains control over society, guiding it not towards new fields of development of the productive forces, but, according to its new and henceforth reactionary nature, towards their destruction.

Society pays for each day of capitalism's continued survival with a new destruction. Each act of decadent capitalism is a moment in this destruction.

In a historical sense, war in the imperialist epoch is the highest and most complete expres­sion of decadent capitalism, its permanent crisis, and its economic way of life: destruction.

There is no mystery about the nature of im­perialist war. Historically it is the concretization of the decadence and the destructiveness of capitalist society, which reveals itself in the ac­cumulation of contradictions and in the exacer­bation of inter-imperialist antagonisms, which serve as the concrete basis and immediate cause for the unleashing of war.


The object of war production is not the solution of an economic problem. Its origins are the re­sult of the state's need, on the one hand, to defend itself against the dispossessed classes and maintain their exploitation by force, and on the other to maintain its economic position and better it at the expense of other imperialist states, again by force. The permanent crisis makes the solution of inter-imperialist differ­ences by are struggle inevitable. War and the threat of war are latent or overt aspects of the situation of permanent war in society. Modern war is essentially a war of materials. With a view to war, a monstrous mobilization of a country's entire economic and technical re­sources is necessary. War production becomes at the same time the axis of industrial production and society's main economic arena.

But does the mass of products represent an increase in social wealth? To this we must reply categorically, no. All the values crated by war' production are doomed to disappear from the productive process to be destroyed without reappearing in the next cycle. After each cycle of production, society chalks up, not a growth in its social heritage, but a decline, an impov­erishment of the totality.

Who pays for war production? In other words, who realizes war production?

In the first place, war production is realized at the expense of the working masses, who are drained by the state (through various financial devices taxes, inflation and supplementary loans and other measures) of value, with which it constitutes a new buying power. But the whole of this mass can only realize part of war production. Most of it remains unrealized and awaiting its realization through war - that is through banditry carried out on the defeated imperialism. In this way, a kind of forced realization takes place.

The victorious imperialism presents the bill of its war production under name of 'reparations', carves its pound of flesh from the defeated imperialism, and imposes its law on it. But the value contained in the war production of the defeated states, as other small capitalist states, is complete and irrecoverably lost. If one drew up a balance sheet for the operation of the entire world economy, taken as a whole, it would be catastrophic, although certain individ­ual imperialisms might be wealthier. The ex­change of goods through which surplus value can be realized only functions partially with the disappearance of the extra-capitalist market, and tends to be replaced by forcible 'exchange', brigandage on the weakest countries by the strongest, by means of imperialist war. This presents us with a new aspect of imperialist war.

III. Transforming imperialist war into civil war

As we said above, it is the cessation of class struggle, or more precisely the destruction of the proletariat's class power and consciousness, the derailing of its struggles (which the bour­geoisie manages through the introduction of its agents into the class, gutting workers' strug­gles of their revolutionary content and putting them on the road of reformism and nationalism), which is the ultimate and decisive condition for the outbreak of imperialist war.

This must be understood not from the nar­row, limited viewpoint of one nation alone, but internationally.

Thus the partial resurgence, the renewed growth of struggles and strike movements in Russia (1913) in no way conflicts with our as­sertion. If we look a little closer, we can see that the power of the international proletariat on the eve of 1914 - its electoral victories, the great social democratic parties, the mass union organizations, pride and glory of the 2nd Inter­national - were only a facade hiding a ruinous ideological condition under its veneer. The workers' movement, undermined and rotten with opportunism, could only topple like a house of cards at the first blast of war.

Reality cannot be understood through the chronological photography of events, but must be seized in its underlying, internal movement, in the profound modifications which occur be­fore they appear on the surface and are regis­tered as dates. It would be committing a serious mistake to remain faithful to the chronological order of history, and see the 1914-18 war as the cause of the collapse of the 2nd Interna­tional, when in reality the outbreak of the war was the direct result of the previous oppor­tunist degeneration of the international workers' movement. The fanfares of internationalism sounded all the louder on the outside, while within the nationalist tendencies triumphed. The war only brought into the open the 'embourgeoisement' of the parties of the 2nd International, the substitution of their original revolutionary program by the ideology of the class enemy, their attachment to the interest of the national bourgeoisie.

The internal process of the destruction of the class consciousness revealed its completion in the outbreak of war in 1914 which it itself had conditioned.

World War 2 broke out under the same con­ditions. We can distinguish three necessary and successive stages between the two imperialist wars.

The first was completed with the exhaustion of the great revolutionary wave after 1917, and sealed by a string of defeats, with the defeat of the left and its expulsion from the Comintern, with the triumph of centrism, and with the USSR's commitment to its evolution towards cap­italism through the theory and practice of 'socialism in one country.'

The second stage was that of international capitalism's general offensive aimed at liquidat­ing the social convulsions in Germany, the cen­tre where the historical alternative between so­cialism and capitalism was decisively played out, through the physical crushing of the prole­tariat, and the installation of the Hitler regime as Europe's gendarme. Corresponding to this stage came the definitive death of the Comintern and the collapse of Trotsky's Left Opposition, which, incapable of regrouping revolutionary energies, engaged in coalitions and fusions with opportunist groups and currents of the socialist left, and in the practices of bluff and adven­turism which led it to proclaim the formation of the 4th International.

The third stage was that of the total derail­ment of the workers' movement in the demo­cratic countries. Under the mask of the defense of 'liberties' and 'workers' conquests' threat­ened by fascism, the real aim was to yoke the proletariat to the defense of democracy - that is, its national bourgeoisie, its national capital. Anti-fascism was the platform, the modern capi­talist ideology which the parties that had be­trayed the proletariat used as wrapping for their putrid merchandise of national defense.

In this third stage occurred the definitive passage of the so-called Communist parties into the service of their respective capitals, the de­struction of the class consciousness through the poison of anti-fascism, the adhesion of the masses to the future inter-imperialist war through their mobilization into the 'popular front', the derailment of the strikes of 1936, the 'anti-fascist' Spanish war. The final victory of state capitalism in Russia was revealed in its fe­rocious repression of the slightest impulse to revolutionary action, its adhesion to the League of Nations, its integration into an imperialist bloc and its installation of a war economy in preparation for imperialist war. This period also saw the liquidation of numerous revolutionary groups and left communists thrown up by the crisis of the CI, who, through their adherence to 'anti-fascist' ideology, and the defense of the 'workers state' in Russia, were caught up in the cogs of capitalism and lost forever as expres­sions of life of the proletariat. Never before has history seen such a divorce between the class and the groups that express its interests and its mission. The vanguard found itself in a state of complete isolation, reduced quantitatively to negligible little islands.

The immense revolutionary wave which burst out at the end of the first imperialist war threw international capitalism into such terror that it had to dislocate the proletariat's very foundations before unleashing another war.


Imperialist war doesn't solve any of the contra­dictions of the system that engenders it. It's a phenomenon that takes place thanks to the mo­mentary eclipse of a proletariat struggling for socialism, but which provokes the most profound instability in society and drags humanity to­wards the abyss.

On the other hand, though conditioned by the eclipse of the class struggle, war can also be a powerful factor in the awakening of the class consciousness and revolutionary combativ­ity of the masses. Thus does the dialectical and contradictory course of history reveal itself.

The piling up of ruins, the enormous de­struction, the millions of corpses, the poverty and famine - all this, growing and developing day by day, confronts the proletariat and the laboring masses with an acute, direct dilemma: revolt or die.

The patriotic lies, the chauvinist fog, are dissipated and only make the proletariat more aware of the atrocious futility of the imperialist butchery. War becomes a powerful motor accel­erating the revival of the class struggle and is rapidly transformed into civil, class war.

During the third year of this war, there ap­peared the first symptoms of a process of dis­engagement from the war by the proletariat. Still a deeply subterranean process, difficult to discern and even more difficult to measure. Against the Russophiles and Anglophiles, against the platonic friends of the revolution, above all the Trotskyists who hide their chauvinism under the argument that there is a greater possibility for the outbreak of revolutionary proletarian movements in the democracies, and who see the victory of the democratic imperialisms as a precondition for the revolution, we for our part lo­cated the centre of the revolutionary ferment in the European countries, more precisely in Italy and Germany, where the proletariat had suffered more from physical destruction than the de­struction of its consciousness, and had only ad­hered to the war under the pressure of violence.

The war had sapped the strength of the German gendarme. The extremely fragile economies of these imperialisms, which had not been able to avoid social convulsions in the past, were bound to be shaken by the first dif­ficulties, the first military reverses. Our 'revolutionaries of tomorrow', who are chauvin­ists today, triumphantly pointed to the mass strikes in America and Britain (while condemning and deploring them because they weakened the power of the democracies) as proof that the democracies offered more advantages to the struggle of the proletariat. Apart from the fact that the proletariat can't determine which type of regime suits it best at a given moment under capitalism, and that to make the proletariat choose between democracy and fascism is to make it abandon its own terrain of struggle against capitalism, the example of the strikes in Britain or America didn't indicate a greater mat­uration of the masses in these countries, but rather showed that capitalism was more solid in these countries and could more easily put up with partial struggles by the proletariat.

Far from denying the importance of these strikes, and while fully supporting them as expressions of the fight for immediate class ob­jectives, we didn't conceal their limited and contingent significance.

Our attention was above all concentrated on the places where the vital forces of capitalism were going through a process of decomposition and of profound revolutionary ferment where the slightest external manifestation could take on an extremely explosive character. Looking out for such symptoms, attentively following this evolution, preparing ourselves to participate in these explosions - this had to be and was our task in this period.

A part of the Italian Fraction of the Commu­nist Left accused us of impatience, refusing to see the draconian measures taken by the Ger­man government in the winter of 1942-43, both at home and on the fronts, as anything but the continuation of fascist policies, and denying that they reflected an internal molecular process. And it's because they denied it that they were surprised and overtaken by the events of July 1943, when the Italian proletariat broke out against the imperialist war and opened the road to civil war.

Enriched by the experience of the first war, incomparably better prepared for the eventual­ity of a revolutionary threat, international cap­italism reacted in solidarity, and with extreme skill and prudence towards a proletariat decap­itated of its vanguard. From 1943 on, the war was turned into a civil war. In affirming this we are not saying that inter-imperialist antagonisms disappeared, or that they ceased to have an effect on the continuation of the war. These antagonisms remained and could only amplify, but to a lesser degree, acquiring a secondary character in comparison to the grave threat that a revolutionary explosion represented for the capitalist world.

The revolutionary danger became the central concern of capitalism in both blocs; it was this which was uppermost in determining the course of military operations, their strategy and the way they were carried out. Thus, through a tacit agreement between the two rival imperialist blocs, and with the aim of circumventing and stifling the first flickers of revolution, Italy, the weakest and most vulnerable link, was cut in two halves.

Each imperialist bloc, through its own partic­ular means, through violence and demagogy, en­sured that order was maintained in either half.

This division of Italy, in which the vital in­dustrial centers of the north were confided to Germany and delivered over to the ferocious re­pression of fascism, was to be maintained in spite of all military considerations until after the collapse of the government in Germany.

The allied landing, the circuitous advance of the Russian armies allowing the systematic de­struction of industrial centers and proletarian concentrations, obeyed the same central objec­tive: they were preventative destructions to counter-act the threat of an eventual revolu­tionary explosion. Germany itself was to be the theatre for a level of destruction, a massacre unprecedented in history.

Faced with the total collapse of the Germany army, with massive desertions and uprisings by soldiers, sailors and workers, repressive mea­sures of the most savage ferocity were the re­ply both internally and externally: the last re­serves of manpower were hurled into battle with the conscious aim of exterminating them.

Unlike during the First World War, when once it had embarked on a course towards revolution, the proletariat kept the initiative and obliged world capitalism to stop the war, during the last war, as soon as the first signal of revolution appeared - in Italy in July 1943 - it was capitalism which seized the initiative and waged an implacable civil war against the proletariat, pre­venting by violence any concentration of prole­tarian forces, not stopping the war even after the collapse and disappearance of the Hitler government and even after Germany had begged for an armistice, in order to stamp out any rev­olutionary threat from the German working class by means of a monstrous carnage, a pitiless preventative massacre.

When one considers that the terrible bom­bardments which the allies directed against Germany destroyed hundreds of thousands of homes and massacred millions of human beings, but left intact 80% of the factories, as the allied press has informed us, one can see the true class meaning of these 'democratic' bombard­ments.

To the skeptics, who saw no civil war either on the side of the proletariat, or of capitalism, because it didn't take place according to known, classical schemas, we suggest that among other things they meditate seriously on these figures.

The original and characteristic trait of this war, which distinguishes it from that of 1914-18, is its sudden transformation into a war against the proletariat while pursuing its imperialist aims. This methodical massacre of the proletariat didn't stop until the danger of socialist revolu­tion had momentarily and partially its true ­been expunged.

How was this possible? How can we explain this momentary and undeniable victory of capi­talism over the proletariat ... How did the situa­tion appear in Germany? The zeal with which the allies carried out a war of extermination, the plan for the massive deportation of the German proletariat, put forward in particular by the Russian government, the methodical and system­atic destruction of the towns, posed the threat that the extermination and dispersal of the Ger­man proletariat would be such that, before it could make the least class gesture, it would be out of the fight for years.

This danger really existed, but capitalism was only partially able to carry out its plan. The revolt of the workers and soldiers, who in some towns came out on top over the fascists, forced the allies to precipitate and to finish this war of extermination earlier than planned. Through these class revolts, the German proletariat suc­ceeded at two levels: in undoing capitalism's plan, forcing it to bring the war quickly to an end, and in unfurling its first revolutionary class actions. International capitalism was able to gain a momentary control of the German proletariat and prevent it from leading the world revolution, but it didn't succeed in eliminating it definitively ...


L'Etincelle (The Spark) No 1,

January 1945

Organ of the French Fraction of the Communist Left



The war continues. The 'liberation' might have made workers hope for an end to the massacre and the reconstruction of the economy, at least in France.

Capitalism has responded to these hopes with unemployment, famine, mobilization. The situation which the proletariat suffered under German occupation has got worse, only now there's no German occupation.

The resistance and the Communist Party promised democracy and profound social re­forms! The government has maintained the cen­sorship and strengthened its police force. It has engaged in a caricature of socialization by nationalizing a few factories, with full compensation for the capitalists! The exploitation of the proletariat remains and no reform can make it go away.

However, the resistance and the Communist Party are in full agreement with the gov­ernment: they don't give a damn about democ­racy or the proletariat. They have but one goal: war. And for this they need the 'sacred unity' of all classes. War for revenge, for the renewal of France, war against Hitlerism, the bourgeoisie claims.

But the bourgeoisie is afraid! It is afraid of proletarian movements in Germany and France. It's afraid of what will happen after the war! It needs to muzzle the French proletariat: it is increasing its police forces, which tomorrow will be used against the workers.

It needs to use the French workers to crush the German revolution; so it is mobilizing its army.

The international bourgeoisie comes to its aid. It is helping it to reconstruct its war economy in order to shore up its own class rule.

The USSR is the first to help out; it has signed a pact of struggle against the French and German workers.

All the parties, the Socialists, the 'Communists' are helping out as well: "Down with the fifth column, with the collaborators! Down with Hitlerism! Down with the brown maquis!"

But all this noise is just an attempt to hide the real origin of the present misery: capi­talism, of which fascism is just the offspring. To hide the betrayal of the lessons of the Russian Revolution, which took place in the middle of the war and against the war. To justify collaboration with the bourgeoisie in the government. To throw the proletariat once again into the imperialist war. To make workers believe that proletarian movements in Germany are just the fanatical resistance of Hitlerlsm!

Comrade workers! More than ever the tena­cious struggle of the revolutionaries during the first imperialist war, of Lenin, Rosa Luxemburg and Liebknecht must be our struggle! More than ever the first enemy to knock down is our own bourgeoisie! More than ever, in the face of the imperialist war, the necessity for civil war is making itself felt!

The working class no longer has a class party: the 'Communist' Party has betrayed, is betraying now, will betray again tomorrow. The USSR has become an imperialism. It is relying on the most reactionary forces to prevent the proletarian revolution. It will be the worst gendarme against the workers' movements of tomorrow; right now it has begun the mass deportation of German workers in order to break their class strength.

Only the left fraction, which has broken away from the "rotting corpses" of the 2nd and 3rd Internationals, represents the revolutionary proletariat today. Only the communist left refused to participate in the derailment of the working class by anti-fascism and, right from the start, warned it against this new trap. It alone denounced the USSR as a pillar of the counter-revolution after the defeat of the world proletariat in 1933!

At the outbreak of the war, it alone stood against any 'Sacred Unity' and proclaimed that the class struggle was the only struggle for the proletariat, in all countries, including the USSR. And it alone understands how to prepare the ground for the future class party, rejecting all compromises and united fronts, and, in a situation ripened by history, following the hard road trodden by Lenin and the Bolshevik fraction before the First World War.

Workers! The war isn't just fascism! It's also democracy and 'socialism in one country', it's also the USSR. It's the whole capitalist regime, which, in its death throes, is dragging the whole of society down with it! Capitalism can't give you peace; even when the war ends, it can't give you anything anymore.

Against the capitalist war, the class solution is civil war! Only through civil war leading to the seizure of power by the proletariat today can there arise a new society, an economy of consumption and no longer of destruction!

Against partisanism and the war effort! For international proletarian solidarity.

For the transformation of imperialist war into civil war.


The Communist Left (French Fraction)

Historic events: 


Development of proletarian consciousness and organisation: 

General and theoretical questions: