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From the people who brought you communism …

--- o --- GRASPING THE NETTLE ---o---

Back about 10 years ago, I saw advertised a talk at the Malcolm X Community Centre in St Paul’s, Bristol, an event organised by a group called the Stalin Society. Having studied the history of the Soviet Union at sixth form and university and presuming this was a historical lecture, I decided to go along.

It was in fact a gathering of mostly retired old communists who put up a portrait of Stalin and were saying that the USSR under his rule was the most enlightened society ever in all history. I found this inwardly amusing for about five minutes until it sunk in just how serious they were.

They droned on about dialectics (I thought that was part of a capacitor) and what had been ideologically decided by the Third Communist International. Khrushchev was a bourgeois puppet who had ruined Stalin’s good work. When I raised the matter of the millions of people Stalin had killed, I was informed that that was all ‘bourgeois propaganda’ and shown the official Soviet statistics, which showed no such spike in executions in the 1930s.

I wonder whether the Malcolm X Community Centre would accept a booking on behalf of a group calling itself the Hitler Society, which held National Socialism as the finest social model ever and claimed the holocaust never happened.

We can ridicule the Stalin Society today, but we must remember they represent what was mainstream leftism for decades. The left so wanted to believe the Soviet Union was a beacon for humanity – a true egalitarian workers’ state – that they wilfully dismissed all reports to the contrary, from the contrived famine in the Ukraine, to the fabricated show-trials, to the mass terror and deportations, to gulags, to the suppression of genuine popular uprisings in the Eastern Bloc, such as Hungary in 1956 and Czechoslovakia in 1968.

Russia bore the brunt of the Second World War. There it is still called ‘The Great Patriotic War’ – the name coined by Stalin to appeal to Russian patriotism in fear that the population would not rally to the banner of international socialism. As with the West, the war defined the post-war political narrative for the Eastern Bloc Communists regimes, which they spun to justify their existence until their collapse.

Stalin’s tradition of labelling all opponents ‘fascists’ – including democratic Western states – continued. The East German government dubbed the Berlin Wall – built to prevent their own people escaping their grim socialist regime – the “anti-Fascist Protection Barrier”.

The left was slow to admit it was wrong. George Orwell was one of the first dissenters. Following Khrushchev’s secret speech denouncing Stalin’s crimes in 1956 and the invasion of Hungary, a few more came out. As a result they were expelled from the Communist Party of Great Britain and ostracised by their intellectual former friends. Leftists eventually grudgingly conceded in the face of overwhelming evidence that the Soviet Union was not a workers’ paradise but a brutal tyranny.

By the 1960s, in the depths of the Cold War, communism had an image problem. Few of the young people who had ‘never had it so good’ were attracted to the dreary old guard, who in turn regarded the new-fangled rock ‘n’ roll music as American cultural imperialism.

By the end of the decade leftism had reinvented itself though. Revolution was in the air with student demonstrations and sit-ins, violent extremist groups and a generation rebelling against the values of their parents. All of this was taking place to a musical soundtrack and linked to a fashion subculture in which revolutionary leftist politics was cool, alongside long hair, drug-taking and casual sex.

How did it come to pass that a lively new music, whose main themes had been dancing, meeting girls and being a bit of bad boy, which had become the expression of an upwardly-mobile younger generation, was so spectacularly hijacked by the far left?

Politics came into rock music most influentially by way of Bob Dylan, an alumnus of New York’s Greenwich Village folk scene. Folk music had long been a hotbed of communists, from those who had promoted blues singers in the 1930s as downtrodden sharecroppers (rather than the snappily-dressed upwardly mobile urbanites of the northern US industrial cities many of them were), to the likes of Pete Seeger, long-time Communist Party member and mentor of Dylan.

It was students in particular who became radicalised, encouraged by leftist academics who were already firmly established. Universities had been a communist recruiting ground at least since the days of the Cambridge Five in the 1930s.

Hard leftists now distanced themselves from communism. They described themselves as Trotskyists – Trotsky having split from Stalin because he wouldn’t accept ‘socialism in one country’ and wanted to continue violent revolution around the world. (A nice guy, then!) The Soviet Union wasn’t real socialism. It was ‘state capitalism’, a ‘degenerated worker’s state’, or whatever the particular ideological epithet your splinter group used. Stalin and the repressive USSR “nothing to do with us” then.

There were some though, such as hubristic union leader Arthur Scargill and our friends in the Stalin Society, who still held that the USSR’s brand of repressive communism was the way foward. (Perhaps I should be more muted in my criticism of Scargill in light of his recent stridently supportive comments around Brexit.)

The left never tires of using every opportunity to connect the right with National Socialism and thuggish neo-Nazis, even when there is no connection. We must never let them or anyone else forget the left’s long and continuing tradition of violence, dictatorship and repression. We owe it to all those who suffered and died under such regimes as those of Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, the Eastern Bloc, Mao and Pol Pot, along with those who still suffer in North Korea, Cuba and Venezuela. Most of all we owe it to ourselves and our own nation to never forget these historical lessons, to reject the ideology which inflicted them and to call out those today who would lead us down that path.

[Editorial Note: this is the second article in the series ‘Grasping the Nettle’.  We published the first article here and the second here. The other articles in that series will be published in the coming days.]

 

Photo by Antonio Campoy Ederra

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About Comrade K (33 Articles)
Part of the London diaspora, Comrade K. now lives in exile in Cardiff, where he is active in his local UKIP branch. He has come a circuitous political route from enjoying winding-up leftists at school, but then, because he thought the ‘60s seemed really cool even though he wasn’t there, indulging revolutionary socialist fantasies during his student years, even going so extreme as becoming a Labour party activist for several years. K. however eventually came round to sense and, despite being seduced by some green philosophies which he still hasn’t entirely repudiated, realised that free-thinking, intelligence and individuality is something entirely different to mindlessly repeating what all his trendy friends and celebrity icons told him … plus he found that going along with feminism didn’t get him girlfriends after all.

9 Comments on From the people who brought you communism …

  1. Good point about the music. One of UKIP’s very lowest points was Mike Reed strumming out his EU song.
    Musically, what have conservatives / right wingers come up with? Country & western, heavy metal and Wagner. A fashionable conservative sound is hard to conceive. Maybe I’m not thinking about this in the right way..

  2. Rodger it would be difficult, granted, but not impossible.

    In October 2007 in the UK High Court Justice Burton, although declining to make the ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ film illegal, ruled that it contained nine scientific inaccuracies and that distribution of the film to school children without the explanations of error would be in breach of section 406 and 407 of the Education Act 1996 regarding the political indoctrination of school children. The court ordered 77 pages of corrective guidance to be issued to any school where the film had been shown.

    Of course the act referred to may have been subsequently ‘modernised’.

  3. kenneth james ogilvie // October 27, 2017 at 1:51 am // Reply

    I find it strange the Europe fought for years against the political dogma of communism and the ended up adopting via the EU

  4. I suspect State school indoctrination is too far gone to be tackled right now. Instead I suggest David Kurten concentrates on private schools. I doubt it is common for political parties to write directly to headmasters, but in our dire need to do something about the left wing agenda and political correctness, it may be worth him putting together a very short booklet (say 8 sides of A5) explaining the problem of and urging the private sector to resist the swing to the left. Perhaps even, DK could speak at one of their conferences – that would be a coup … and I’m sure he would make a very good impression.

  5. BREXIT is vital not just for the UK but for all the native peoples of Europe
    By far the most obscene thing in the 20thC was the mass murder by starvation of 8 million Ukrainian peasants. Even today few know the full details as the soviet regime was a master at disguise.
    We are facing a disgusting commissioner class in Brussels and make no bones about it there is nothing they will not do once they have the power. It will start with fines, expulsion from work and re=education courses.
    At the end death by fighting to the last would be honourable.
    All I know is that we shall win and that history will applaud those who took part in the saving of western culture.
    Most of us will go to our graves unrecognised but that is not important be sure to do the right thing. Refuse to be bowed by these staggeringly stupid academics; most people are alreadily heartily sick of the lies we are told. Our job is to light the path of truth with the torches of justice.

  6. Excellent article.
    The left are so well entrenched in every government department. Remember, the Long March Through The Institutions is the tactic used to gain control. Mission creep is endemic in academia.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/10625650/The-Lefts-long-march-will-be-hard-to-stop.html

    I hope that David Kurten is able to make some headway into exposing the left wing agenda in our universities and schools.
    I would start by calling to privatise all teacher training colleges and take this vital brainwashing
    Chris Heaton Harris found out how deeply the left are entrenched when he wrote to universities asking for the names of dons engaged in rubbishing Brexit.
    https://www.theguardian.com/education/2017/oct/24/universities-mccarthyism-mp-demands-list-brexit-chris-heaton-harris

    UKIP should make every parent aware that it is illegal to give unbalanced political doctrine in schools.

    http://www.citizenshipfoundation.org.uk/main/page.php?108

    • “Illegal to give unbalanced political doctrine in schools”
      I would imagine this goes back many years. I used to live in Coventry where there was a big hoo-ha about a certain Colin Jordan who was a school teacher who was associated prominently with a fascist organisation predecessor to the BNP.
      It was felt at the time that because of his membership of that organisation he should not be allowed to teach.
      What is the official definition of “unbalanced”?
      To be quite honest I would think it could be so wide as to be impractical to enforce.

  7. Maybe we should call for an offence of “Stalinist Purge Denial”. Same dog surely?

  8. Tovarish K for two years, when young, I shared an office with a Russian engineer who was born and brought up in Kiev, then in the USSR from whence she had escaped. She explained the role of the Commissar.

    She said he had a quota to fill, so every month or so someone would be dragged out of their home in the wee hours, never to be seen again, having been labelled a dissident. She said everyone was very nice to the Commissar.

    So if, for example, her husband bought her a new fur coat the Commissar’s wife got one too. And of course, everything they said to anyone was ‘politically correct’.

    Few people here can see or even imagine where, if we don’t get out, we could all end up going and just how important Brexit really is.

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