Just reading Trotsky’s the history of the Russian Revolution. A large book with huge detail and amazing insight into the psychology and treachery of the counter revolutionary forces, and of course western industrialist interference in the internal affairs of a sovereign nation, surprise, surprise
What I find fascinating is the similarity between this and the normal workings of a so-called democracy in an imperialist world with all the usual lies and treachery. While the workings and treachery are nothing new, it gives a great insight and understanding into how it all works and a great education for people interested in changing the world order and achieving a real people’s democracy.
While reading it I took time out to read a small Socialist Aotearoa pamphlet called ‘In Defence of October’. This was a debate between four historians on whether Leninism led to Stalinism. An interesting debate with a lot of good points made in it, but by the end there seemed to be one glaring omission – and I think this is true in general about the debate on this subject worldwide – and that is:
Did western industrialist interference in the revolution lead to Stalinism? Did Churchillism lead to Stalinism? Did Churchillism lead to Hitler? Did it lead to Franco? Did it lead to Mussolini? Did it lead to the Greek generals? Did it lead to Pinochet? Did it lead to Pol Pot?
The list goes on and on. I could list about 50 countries where the US alone has been instrumental in installing horrible dictators, which ultimately has led to the fucked up capitalist world we live in now, with its perpetual wars, starvation poverty, persecution, real threat of climate disaster and nuclear war.
While the academics argue about the deck chairs on the titanic.
The question really should be: if western industrial countries had kept their blood stained hands out of Russia’s revolution, would Leninism have led to a utopian world socialism? And I think the answer would be, quite likely.
Sometimes I think these academics lack imagination or empathy. They don’t seem to be able to fully comprehend the situation Lenin found himself in after the revolution and after the civil war. They don’t seem to be able to comprehend the magnitude of being invaded by the most powerful countries in the world, and the devastating effect of this on the revolution and on socialism. They seem to think that Lenin could just make socialism out of the remnants of the people left – basically a bunch of illiterate peasants with no idea of socialism, the ruling class, and their hangers-on who had already proved the level of their treachery, treason and butchery.