The ECCI resolution on the dissolution of the Polish CP and the accompanying letter from Dimitrov to Stalin about the resolution.
RESOLUTION OF THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OF THE COMMUNIST INTERNATIONAL.[i]
Polish fascism, unable to resist the growing mass revolutionary movement only by means of open terror, has made espionage, sabotage and provocation the major tool of its struggle against the workers’ movement, against all of the anti-fascist, democratic forces, [and has] poisoned all of the political and social life in Poland with this foul system. For many years, it has been planting its spies and agents among all the workers’ and peasants’ democratic organizations. However, the pilsudchiks made a special effort to infiltrate the Communist movement, which represents the major threat to Polish fascism.
The Executive Committee of the Communist International has established, on the basis of irrefutable documented evidence, that, for a number of years, there have been enemies, agents of the Polish fascism, within the leadership structures of the Polish Communist Party. By organizing splits, usually fictitious, within the workers’, national-democratic, [and] petit-bourgeois organizations, the pilsudchiks poured their spies and provocateurs into the communist party, disguised as the oppositional elements coming over to the ranks of the Communist movement (the PPS group headed by Sochachki-Bratkowski, the Poalei-Zion group headed by Henrykowski and Lampe, the Ukrainian s[ocial] d[emocratic] group, the UVO group of Wasylkiw[ii]-Turianowski, Korchik’s group of Belorussian SRs, the “Vyzvolenje” group of Wojewudski). By arranging the arrests in such a way as to remove the most loyal elements from the communist ranks, the Polish defenziva gradually planted its agents into leading positions in the Communist Party. At the same time, in order to give its agent provocateurs and spies authority among the workers and members of the Communist Party, after staging mock trials, fascism often subjected its own agents to imprisonment so that later they could be liberated, at the earliest convenience, by organizing “escapes,” or “exchanges” for spies and saboteurs [later] caught red-handed in the USSR. With the help of their agents in the leading organs of the party, the pilsudchiks promoted their people (for example, Zarski, Sochachki, Dombal) to the communist faction of the Sejm during the elections to the Sejm, instructed them to deliver provocative speeches, which the fascists used [as justification] to attack the Soviet Union and for the bloody repression of the [Polish] workers’ and peasants’ movement.
A gang of spies and provocateurs entrenched in the leadership of the Polish Communist Party, having planted, in turn, agents in the periphery of the party organization, has been systematically betraying the best sons of the working class to the class enemy. By organizing failures, [they were] destroying, year after year, party organizations in the Polish heartland, as well as in Western Belorussia and Western Ukraine. [This gang] has been systematically perverting the party’s political line in order to weaken the influence of communism among the masses, in order for the party to become increasingly alien and hostile to the Communist International. For its disintegrating work, Polish fascism widely used the Trotskyist-Bukharinist reprobates, [who] already were, or willingly became, the agents of the Polish defenziva by virtue of their having a common political purpose with fascism. The Polish defenziva kindled the factional struggle in the party, through its agents both in the Kosheva-Warski group and in the Lenski-Henrykowski group, and used both factions to disorganize the party and its work among the masses, and to separate the workers from the communist party.
However, the most ignoble role that this espionage agency played in relation to the USSR was following the directives of fascist intelligence. Playing on the nationalist prejudices of the most backward masses among the Polish people, it sought to create obstacles to the rapproachment of the peoples of Poland and the peoples of the USSR, and in the interests of the fascist warmongers, to wreck the cause of peace that is selflessly defended by the great country of the Soviets. At the same time, this network of the class enemy, disguised as political émigrés, was transferred by Polish fascism to the USSR so as to conduct espionage, sabotage, and wrecking activities.
All attempts to purge the agents of Polish fascism from the ranks of the Communist movement, while retaining the current organization of the Polish Communist Party, have proven to be futile, since the central party organs were in the hands of spies and provocateurs who used the difficult situation of the underground party to remain in its leadership.
Based on all this and in order to give honest Polish communists a chance to rebuild the party, the Executive Committee of the Communist International, in accord with the statutes and the decisions of the Congresses of the Communist International, resolved:
1. To dissolve the Communist Party of Poland, due to its saturation with spies and provocateurs.
2. To recommend that, until the re-creation of the Polish Communist Party, all the honest communists shift the emphasis of their work to those mass organizations where there are workers and toilers, while fighting to establish the unity of the workers’ movement and to create in Poland a popular anti-fascist front.
At the same time, the ECCI warns the communists and the Polish workers against any attempt by Polish fascism and its Trotskyist-Bukharinist espionage network to create a new organization of espionage and provocation, under the guise of a pseudo-Communist Party of Poland, so as to demoralize the communist movement.
The Communist International knows that thousands of Polish workers sacrifice themselves and their lives to serve and protect the vital interests of the toiling masses, it knows that the heroic Polish proletariat has had, in its glorious revolutionary past, many remarkable moments in its struggle against the tzarist and Austro-Hungarian monarchies, against Polish fascism. It knows about the heroic deeds of the Dombrowski battalions sent by the Polish proletariat to defend the Spanish people. It is convinced that the Polish proletariat will have [again] a communist party, purged of the foul agents of the class enemy, which will indeed lead the struggle of the Polish toiling masses for their liberation.
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Dear comrade Stalin!
We are thinking of passing, within the ECCI Presidium, the attached resolution on the dissolution of the Polish Communist Party, and then to publish it.
After publishing this resolution, we would send an open letter to the Polish communists which reveals, in greater detail, the enemy’s demoralizing activities within the ranks of the Communist Party and the Polish workers’ movement.
To re-create the CP Poland, the formation of a special organizational commission has been suggested. We plan to select some of the members of this commission from the most distinguished and tested fighters from the International brigades in Spain.
We entreat you, comrade Stalin, to give your advice and directives:
1. Regarding this issue, whether this announcement will be expedient before the investigation of the arrested former Polish party leaders is completed, or should we wait longer.
2. Regarding the contents and the character of the resolution on the dissolution of the CP Poland itself.
With fraternal greetings
28 November 1937.
RGASPI, f. 495, op. 74, d. 402, ll. 2-6.
Original in Russian. Typewritten.
[i] This resolution was adopted by a vote by the members of the ECCI Presidium on 16 August 1938, under the title “Resolution of the ECCI Presidium.” F. 495. op. 2, d. 264, ll. 198, 202-205.
[ii] Wasylkiw (real name – Osip Krilyk) (1896-1933). A member of the Communist Party of Eastern Galicia (later CPWU) from 1920; in 1923, he was elected member of the CC CPP. After 1925, he was member of the Political Bureau of the CC CPWU. In 1927, he was the CPWU representative in the CPP delegation in the ECCI. He was accused of nationalism and factionalist activities, and removed from the party work. In 1928, he was expelled from the party. After 1932, he lived in the USSR. He was arrested in May 1933 and sentenced to ten years in prison.
[iii] Across the letter, Stalin wrote: "The dissolution is about two years late. It is necessary to dissolve [the party] but, in my opinion, [this] should not be published in the press. " This resolution was first published in Voprosy istorii KPSS, 1988, No. 12, p. 52.