This edition of Proletarian is dedicated to the brave men and women workers, soldiers and peasants who fought in the Great October Socialist Revolution of 1917.
It is dedicated to the members of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (Bolsheviks), who organised the masses to make their struggle effective, and most of all to the leadership of that party, led by the great Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, whose profound theoretical insights enabled the oppressed masses of the Russian empire to clearly understand their enemies.
With the unstoppable combination of Bolshevik organisation and Marxist-Leninist theory, the workers and peasants of Russia were able to unite to effective action that defeated first tsarism and feudalism, then Russian capitalist imperialism, and finally the combined forces of European imperialist intervention.
Their heroic feats did not stop there. Under the scientific leadership of the Bolsheviks, the masses in the new Soviet republic were mobilised not only to destroy the old, capitalist forces of production and state control, but also to build the world’s first socialist state.
The colossal achievements of the Soviet Union during the period of socialist construction are well known and dealt with elsewhere in this issue. Workers not only in the Soviet Union but all over the world have felt the ramifications of those achievements every day since October 1917.
The genie, as they say, is well and truly out of the bottle. Capitalism might linger on, but it is living on borrowed time.
After October 1917, the imperialists lost the moral high ground. When Soviet policy proved in practice the fallacy of bourgeois justifications for racism and national oppression (that colonised peoples were unfit to rule themselves) and for sexism (that women were physically and mentally incapable of doing ‘men’s work’), the popular sentiment turned against imperialism for good.
That modern-day imperialists are forced to pay lip-service to ‘equality’ and ‘human rights’; that their colonial wars have to be fought under such slogans as ‘anti-terrorism’ or ‘pro-democracy’ are a telling legacy of October.
No longer will workers accept the openly-expressed imperial ambitions of the nineteenth century. No longer will oppressed peoples suffer their fate in silence, accepting the propaganda that their European overlords are somehow ordained by God to rule over them.
The imperialists may continue to fight wars for domination and plunder, but they have to hide their real motivations for doing so, and they are almost never successful in the end.
Where in the world, since October, is the people who will accept colonial rule? From Korea to Palestine, from Vietnam to Angola and Syria, the history of the last century is littered with evidence of the determined resistance of oppressed peoples to imperialism’s best-laid plans.
As fighters for socialism, the most important legacy that the October revolution has left for us is Leninism, which was profoundly defined by Josef Stalin as “Marxism of the era of imperialism and the proletarian revolution. To be more exact, Leninism is the theory and tactics of the proletarian revolution in general, the theory and tactics of the dictatorship of the proletariat in particular.” (Foundations of Leninism, 1924)
Let us pick up this powerful weapon and learn to use it. Let us work unceasingly to bring proletarian dictatorship (that is, rule by the working people) to Britain.
Long live the October Revolution!
The future belongs to communism!