The New Role of National Legislative Bodies in the Communist Conspiracy

Copied from a report by: Committee on Un-American Activities, House of Representatives,

Eighty-Seventy Congress, First Session. December 30, 1961


From behind the Iron Curtain has come one of the most amazing Communist documents of our time. Brazen, boastful, and alarmingly frank, it is a detailed account of treachery and intrigue employed by the Reds during the three years preceding their 1948 conquest of Czechoslovakia. The document offers the case history of Czechoslovakia as a Communist blueprint for subversion and coercion in all free world nations. It places special emphasis on the use of parliaments in bringing about Communist revolutions.

The document actually consists of two chapters from a book entitled "About the Possible Transition to Socialism by Means of the Revolutionary Use of Parliament and the Czechoslovak Experience," first brought to the attention of the free world at the 1957 London conference of the Inter-Parliamentary Union. Three years later, copies of two chapters from the book came into the possession of Radio Free Europe, which translated them into English.

The authorship of this document is of great significance. It was not written by a Kremlin theoretician, but by Jan Kozak, a Communist member of the Czechoslovak National Assembly. Kozak, now the official historian of the Czech Communist Party, is a chest-beating, battle wise conspirator who knows from first-hand experience that bold and deceitful Communist tactics can overcome strategical and numerical disadvantages when the non-Communist opposition fails to comprehend a threat to its existence until it is too late. Kozak was a participant in the new Communist parliamentary tactics which proved so successful in achieving and maintaining victory "from within" in Czechoslovakia and other countries that the Kremlin departed completely from long-standing strategy and adopted a new post-revolution role for legislative bodies in Red-conquered nations. Whereas destruction was formerly the Communists' plan for a national legislative institution, it is now their policy to convert it into "an active revolutionary assembly."

"Our experience," says Kozak, "provides notable and practical proof that it is possible to transform parliament from an instrument of the bourgeoisie into an organ of power for the democracy of the working people [i.e., a Communist dictatorship], into a direct instrument of power for the peaceful development of the socialist revolution."

Parliaments, of course, have always been the targets of Communist conspirators in free nations. The Second World Congress of the Comintern (Communist International) in Moscow in 1920, for instance, reiterated the original Communist doctrine on national legislatures:

            The parliament at present can in no way serve as the arena of a struggle for reform .... Therefore it is the immediate historical task of the working class to tear this apparatus out of the hands of the ruling classes, to break and destroy it ... At the same time, however, the revolutionary general staff of the working class is vitally concerned in having its scouting parties in the parliamentary institutions of the bourgeoisie in order to facilitate this task of destruction ...

            Communism repudiates parliamentarism as the form of the future; it renounces the same as a form of the class dictatorship of the proletariat ... its aim is to destroy parliamentarism. Therefore it is only possible to speak of utilizing the bourgeois State organizations with the object of destroying them.

Now Communists hold a different view: Parliaments can be helpful post-revolution vehicles for transforming democratic nations into full-fledged Communist satellites and, therefore, should not be destroyed. Kozak explains the new Red reasoning:

            Parliament in bourgeois countries is a product of historical development and cannot be erased from life. It is necessary, therefore, to work in it and to use it in the fight against bourgeois society.

That the Communist leaders have in fact done an about face in regard to the role of parliament is confirmed in Moscow's official English version of the book, "Fundamentals of Marxism-Leninism," the latest compendium of Red doctrine (published in 1959) for the instruction of Communists in all parts of the world. The book states:

            The Communists have for decades persistently exposed the parliamentary illusions which the reformists sowed among the workers. This does not mean that the Communist Parties wholly rejected the parliamentary struggle. They recognized its significance for the defense of the day-to-day interest and democratic rights of the people. At the same time, however, they pointed out that by means of the parliamentary struggle the working class could not achieve its fundamental aims, could not wrest power from the hands of the bourgeoisie.

            This position was correct for its time because it was dictated by the historical conditions which then prevailed.

            But the situation has now changed and the revolutionary parties have a different attitude to the parliamentary struggle. Analyzing the conditions of the working class struggle in our day, the Twentieth Congress of the C.P.S.U. arrived at the conclusion that the working class can now make use of the machinery of parliamentary democracy to win power. [emphasis added]

At the Twentieth Congress of the C.P.S.U. held in Moscow in February, 1956, a resolution was adopted which stated, in part, that --

            in present day conditions the working class in many capitalist countries has a genuine opportunity to unite the overwhelming majority of the people under its leadership and to ensure that the basic means of production are placed in the hands of the people. Rightest bourgeois parties and the governments which they form are suffering failures more and more often. In these conditions, the working class, uniting around itself the working peasantry, the intellectuals and all patriotic forces, and firmly rebuffing opportunist elements incapable of renouncing a policy of collaboration with the capitalists and landlords, has an opportunity to defeat the reactionary, anti-popular forces, to win a firm majority in parliament and to turn the parliament from a agency of bourgeois democracy into an instrument of genuinely popular [i.e. Communist] will. [emphasis added]

The previously mentioned "Fundamentals of Marxism-Leninism" acknowledges how impressed the Kremlin is by the Czechoslovakian type of parliamentary revolution when it attributes passage of the above resolution by the Communist Party of the Soviet Union to the fact that other Communist parties of the world had arrived at this same conclusion on the basis of their actual experience.

            It is quite clear why Marxism has tackled this problem. Broad anti-monopoly, anti-imperialist coalitions, uniting the majority of the nations, are now in process of formation in the capitalist world. These coalitions may give rise to new types of popular power, and parliament - as a nation-wide representative institution - may serve as their organizational form and as a means of developing a wide struggle against monopoly rule.

By retaining the national legislature in a country which they have seized, the Communists hope to cloak themselves with a measure of respectability and establish a basis for self-serving propaganda. Kozak, therefore, insists that the Red victory in Czechoslovakia was accomplished "absolutely legally", and adds:

            Our way has supplied a definite proof that Marxism-Leninism has nothing in common with a "cult of violence" and has shaken very seriously the lying propaganda ... that the basic difference between the revolutionary workers movement and reformism lies in the question of a "non-bloody" way to socialism.

"Fundamentals of Marxism-Leninism" elaborates on the same subject:

            The parliamentary method of transition to socialism would give the working class a number of advantages. The formation of a new power by so traditional an institution as parliament is for many countries, would at once endow it with the necessary authority, facilitating the subsequent socialist transformations. Any resistance to the socialist revolution would in this case be illegal, not only de facto but also de jure, and aimed against the will of the nation expressed by parliament.

Although "Fundamentals of Marxism-Leninism" in these words, does advocate the seemingly "democratic" and "peaceful" extension of the Communist conspiracy where possible, it also freely acknowledges that this is not always possible and calls for force and violence whenever they are necessary to implement a Red revolution. The book states:

            While noting that the possibility of a peaceful revolution has appeared, Marxist-Leninists are at the same time aware of the fact that in a number of cases a sharp accentuation of the class struggle is inevitable. Wherever the reactionary bourgeoisie has a strong army and police force at its disposal, the working class will encounter fierce resistance. There can be no doubt that in a number of capitalist countries the over through of the bourgeois dictatorship will inevitable take place through an armed struggle. [emphasis added]

A manifesto released December 5, 1960, at the conclusion of a lengthily Moscow meeting attended by representatives of 81 Communist parties throughout the world, clearly spelled out the need for violence in furthering the Communist revolution. It stated that --

            in the event of the exploiting classes' resorting to violence [to resist a Communist takeover] the possibility of non-peaceful transition to socialism should be borne in mind. Leninism teaches, and experience confirms, that the ruling classes never relinquish power voluntarily. In this case the degree of bitterness and the forms of class struggle will depend ... on the resistance put up by the reactionary circles ... [emphasis added]

In short, whenever free world nations refuse to lie down and play dead before the conspiratorial menace, the Communists intend to resolve the issue in their favor with violence.

In a major address delivered in Moscow on January 6, 1961, Soviet dictator Nikita Khrushchev said:

            Marxism-Leninism starts from the premise that the forms of the transition to socialism may be peaceful and non-peaceful. It is in the interests of the working class, of the masses, that the revolution be carried out in a peaceful way. But in the event of the ruling classes resisting the revolution with violence and refusing to submit...the proletariat will be obliged to crush their resistance and launch a resolute civil war. [emphasis added]

In sum, Communist doctrine states that the conspiracy can sometimes achieve its aims, as well as "respectability" through parliamentary intrigue or other non-violent means; but that when this is not possible, it must resort to force and violence.

Lest the Communist cloak of respectability be taken seriously, witness Kozak's description of the Reds' program for Czechoslovakia, formulated long before their seizure of power (to be accomplished with the blessing of parliament if possible, without if necessary):

            Of the political points in the program, these were the most important: the breaking up of the basic members of the old oppressive bourgeois state apparatus and assumption of power by the national committees, the formation of a new people's security system and army, the prohibition of the revival of the political parties which had represented the treacherous upper bourgeoisie, a systematic purge of the entire political, economic, and cultural life of the country, the settlement of the relationships between the Czech and Slovak nations on the principle of equality, the expulsion of the German minority, etc.

            Of the economic measures, the following were the most important: the transfer of all enemy property, of that of the treacherous upper bourgeoisie and of other trators, to the national administration of the new people's authorities; the transfer of the land belonging to these enemies and traitors to the ownership of landless persons, tenants and working small holders.

            The principal foreign policy task was unequivocal alliance with the Soviet Union, safeguarding national liberty and independence as a state and further undisturbed, peaceful development for the nations of Czechoslovakia.

            The form of parliament remained the same in Czechoslovakia after the Red takeover, but as Kozak admits, "the content was different."

Communists have always preferred, when feasible, to extend their international conspiracy by legal or seemingly legal means. This lessens the chance of civil war and eases the path of conquest. Friedrich Engles, in a foreword to Marx' "Class Struggles in France," wrote:

            The irony of world history puts everything upside down. With us "revolutionaries" and "rebels," legal methods agree much more than illegal ones or than a coup. The parties of order, as they call themselves, die by the legal state which they created.

Lenin too, preferred to follow the easiest road to revolution - even though he said Communists should never hesitate to take the hard road of violence when it was called for. According to Kozak, Lenin held that:

            A delivery may be difficult or easy. Naturally, we are all for an easy and painless delivery...But if necessary we are ready to undergo a difficult and painful delivery [the use of force and violence] to see the child born.

All-out Communist military aggression and guerrilla warfare in Korea, Tibet, Vietnam, Cuba, and Laos underline the fact that Communist strategy has never departed from Lenin's call for force and violence, when necessary, "to see the child born." Furthermore, the bloody streets of Budapest and the execution pits in Havana provide indisputable evidence that Communist leaders will employ all the tools of terror and violence necessary "to keep the child alive."

Clearly the international conspiracy of communism is a multiple assault on the dignity and freedom of man. Cries of peace, threats of war, open coercion, quiet subversion, testing of bombs, and deceitful disarmament schemes are all included in the many-sided Communist strategy designed for only two purposes - conquest and enslavement. Although the conspiracy's right hand is often extended in an apparent gesture of friendship and human decency, its left hand ever grips tightly the handle of violence and treachery. Shamelessly it substitutes the left hand for the right hand at will.

In a letter published by the Washington "Evening Star" on December 18, 1961, Stefan Korbonski, chairman of the Polish delegation to the Assembly of Captive European Nations, related an outstanding example of Communist hand-switching in his native country. It occurred after World War II, when the Communist regime mistakenly considered itself to be strong enough to call for an election and have its authority confirmed by the people in a show of democracy. When overwhelming opposition to the Polish Communist rule became obvious during the pre-election days, the Reds reverted to a savage campaign of terror and murder. Quoting from official protests filed just before that January 19, 1947, election, Korbonski described what happened as follows:

            One hundred and eighteen local leaders of the anti-Communist independent Polish Peasant Party, on behalf of which I became a member of parliament, were murdered by the security police during the electoral campaign.

            One hundred and sixty-two candidates for parliament, 1,962 local militants, almost all of our observers at 5,227 boards of elections and about 100,000 members of our party were arrested.

            Three hundred and twenty-seven of our party offices were raided by the security police who in 48 cases planted weapons on the premises and our party was prohibited from carrying out its activities in 29 counties; finally, our lists of candidates were declared invalid in 10 districts comprising 76 deputies.

            "In all elections which were held afterwards," wrote Korbonski in his Evening Star letter, "no opposition party was ever tolerated and they followed the well known Soviet pattern."

Another example of how Communist force is used for both the takeover and the enslavement of a people is found in the case of East Germany. An article which appeared in the Moscow newspaper "Pravda" on December 30, 1961, according to an Associated Press dispatch, reported that East German Communist leader Walter Ulbricht had "acknowledged officially for the first time that the presence of the Soviet army alone made possible the communization of East Germany."

One of the great lessons to be learned from the Kozak document is that the communist movement is not a reform movement; to the contrary, Communists are the arch enemies of parliamentary reformists and consider the latter obstructionists to the underlying Red aim of rendering impotent all elements of society which refuse to submit to the will of their international conspiracy. Kozak explains:

            To the reformists, an organ for cooperation between the workers class and the bourgeoisie. Partial reforms achieved in the parliament (in agreement with the capitalists) serve the reformists as evidence that peaceful coexistence of bourgeoisie and the workers class is possible, that class struggle is dying down, that revolution is superfluous and political domination of the workers' class unnecessary. Instead of the necessity of a proletarian democracy, they sustain the illusion of a parliamentary, pure democracy.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

            Therefore, if the workers' class is to create under its leadership a united revolutionary popular movement able to break the resistance of the reactionary bourgeois forces, if it is to transform a bourgeoisie parliament into an organ of the will of the working people and to use it as an instrument for a peaceful transition to socialism, it must fight systematically and energetically against reformism with its treacherous ideology and practice.

Yet Kozak readily advocates a Communist alliance with reform groups for the purpose of creating a "National Front" in the formative stages of a revolution. In pursuing this strategy, he says, "...not the questions of fundamental differences should be emphasized but those questions which are common and which reflect immediate interests." Such an alliance was necessary for the Communist in Czechoslovakia because they represented a distinct minority among the numerous power-seeking groups; but once they had set up a National Front, it didn't take long for the militant Communist minority to capture control of it "over the heads of the leaders."

In addition to advancing the Communists' interest in Czechoslovakia, the National Front strategy provided them with a better opportunity for subverting and reducing the power of their so-called reformist "allies." Says Kozak:

            It fulfilled the tactical principle of obtaining from all unreliable allies concessions, obligations and promises as far-reaching as possible, this being the surest way to compromise them and to help the faithful allies within these parties.

Although the use of parliament played an important role in the Communist takeover in Czechoslovakia, it was only one element in the over-all strategy which accounted for the Red victory. From the outset, the plan followed was one of creating pressure "from below" (the masses) and combining it with pressure "from above" (Reds in key government posts and parliament) to clamp the opposition in the jaws of a pincer. A prime example of this tactic was the land reform program passed by the Czech Parliament after a violent struggle between its Communist and anti-Communist members.

First, the Communist-controlled Ministry of Agriculture (pressure "form above") announced a proposal for a drastic "reform" program that would confiscate land from all but small holders. The Ministry invited reaction and support from the working peasantry (pressure "from below"). Workers' organizations and newly-created "Peasants' Commissions" throughout the country were instructed to draft petitions and pass resolutions in favor of the land reform proposal. These were forwarded by the thousands to Parliament.

The Communist minority in the Parliament openly agitated and debated for passage of the program. A sharp class fight followed. Members who would not support the proposal were labeled as representatives of the big landholders and enemies of the people. They were falsely accused of wanting to give additional state-owned land and forests to the big real estate holders.

Next, the Ministry of Agriculture announced even more drastic land reform proposals (more pressure "from above"), increasing the intensity of the class struggle. These included the seizure of all land held for the purpose of investment and a state mechanization plan for small farms.

The climax came when delegations from Peasants' Commissions, the Communist Party, pro-Communist elements in other National Front parties, and other Red inspired groups descended upon Parliament in mass, and in Kozak's words, "stormily warned the leadership of the bourgeois parties not to obstruct their demands, claiming their immediate implementation" (more pressure "from below")

Parliament was converted into a riotous, revolutionary assembly. The badly shaken opposition fell apart, and the land reform law was passed. For all practical purposes, parliamentary resistance to the Communist conspiracy was ended. Twelve non-Communist government ministers soon resigned in indignation over still another Red-created crisis and were replaced by pro-Reds. The Communists then armed selected factory guards and key workers' groups to secure the revolution.

In discussing victories and defeats in other countries, Kozak credits the Communists' arming of "mature" workers with the suppression of counter-revolutions in Poland and Hungary. He attributes the defeat of the Communists in the Spanish Civil War to the fact that the Reds were unable to muster sufficient pressure "from above" for a purge of fascist generals from the army, so the army was preserved for the counter-revolution...."

Parliament, as a pressure "from above," played a key role in the gradual movement which gave Communists complete control over Guatemala in the early fifties. A 1957 State Department pamphlet, entitled "A Case History of Communist Penetration," points out that --

            what is almost incredible is the measure of success the Communists achieved in penetrating, subverting, and finally controlling the government machinery of Guatemala.

            Within 10 years a handful of Communists in Guatemala attained a position of political influence which was unique in the free world.... Through the technique of the "popular front" they dictated to the Congress and openly manipulated the President. The judiciary made one valiant attempt to protect its integrity and independence, but the Communists, using their control of the legislative body, caused the Supreme Court to be absolved when it refused to give approval to a Communist-contrived law.

Having attained dictatorial power over the Congress and having "legally" removed the Supreme Court, the only remaining restraint on the national legislature's actions (the executive was already under complete Red domination), the Communists in Guatemala had a clear field in which to implement their revolutionary aims (until an armed revolt was required to end their rule in 1954.

Even here in the United States, Communists have, from time to time, made successful penetrations of "parliaments." Sworn testimony at 1948 hearings conducted by the Washington State Joint Legislative Fact-Finding Committee on Un-American Activities, for example, disclosed that more than a dozen members of the Washington State Legislature in the late thirties and early forties had simultaneously been members of the Communist Party. There were at least nine Communist members of the State Legislature during its session of 1939. Whenever legislative strategy of common interest to this group was required, word was passed among them that there was to be a meeting of the "Dykes, Drains and Ditches Committee." the Reds would retire to one of the committee rooms for a caucus.

Several of the identified Communists were still serving in the Washington State Legislature at the time of the 1948 hearings.

A naturalized U.S. citizen who had served ten years in the Michigan State Senate was identified in sworn testimony before the House Committee on Un-American Activities as a member of the Communist Party. In several appearances before the committee, he consistently asserted his privilege under the fifth amendment and refused to confirm or deny party membership.

Three former U.S. Congressmen, two elected in 1936 and the other in 1944, were subsequently identified as having been members of the Communist Party. Two of them became fifth-amendment witnesses on this subject before the committee. The third ex-Congressman denied that he had ever been a Communist Party member, but freely admitted that he had aided numerous organizations listed as subversive by the Attorney General. Furthermore, during an appearance before the committee in 1955, he went so far as to refuse to acknowledge that the Soviet Union had ever attempted espionage activities in the United States.

At the Seventeenth National Convention of the Communist Party of the USA, held in New York City in December 1959, an adopted resolution, with apparent reference to the 1958 elections, claimed:

            Despite certain glaring gaps and much unevenness, the Party played an important role in a number of electoral struggles (California, Ohio, New York, Illinois, Michigan, etc.) ....

In outlining future Communist Party action, convention leaders hammered at the need for infiltrating both the Democrat and Republican Parties (with special concentration upon influencing the nomination of candidates in primary elections), creating dissension within, and causing factions to break from, the two major parties and ultimately organizing these dissident groups into a Communist-run third party of the "farmer-labor" variety. However, mindful of the fate of the Progressive Party -- which, the Communists now admit, failed because they had not developed sufficient grassroots support to sustain it before setting it up -- the party's convention bosses warned against "premature and adventurist splits which result in isolation." The convention delegates were told:

            If such a party is to serve effectively as the political expression of a broad democratic (Communist) front of the people against monopoly, its emergence would involve a mass breakaway from the traditional two-party system. It would have to be based firmly on the trade unions, have at its core a solid Labor-Negro alliance, and win the adherence of the mass of farmers and of the city middle strata.

An article by Betty Gannett in the July 1961 issue of the Communist magazine "Political Affairs" is recent evidence that the Reds are carrying out the instructions laid down at the Seventeenth National Convention. Comrade Gannett outlined a feverish program of activity by which the Reds were to influence the then approaching November 7 New York City elections. She said that "we must give serious consideration to running several Communist candidates."

In view of the renewed emphasis by the Communist Party of the USA on penetrating legislative bodies in this country, it is well for every American voter to be reminded of the long-standing "rule of allegiance," as spelled out at the Second World Congress of the Comintern, under which Communist "legislators" operate:

            Each Communist representative must remember that he is not a "legislator," who is bound to seek agreements with the other legislators, but an agitator of the party, detailed into the enemy's camp in order to carry out the orders of the party there. The Communist member is answerable not to the wide mass of his constituents, but to his own Communist Party -- whether legal or illegal.

It must also be remembered that the Communist Party of the USA is not answerable to itself or to its members, but rather, as an integral part of an international conspiracy, to the Red bosses in the Kremlin. After extensive hearings, the Subversive Activities Control Board found on April 20, 1953, that the Communist Party of the USA "is substantially directed, dominated and controlled by the Soviet Union, which controls the world Communist movement." The Board said that the Communist Party in this country "has and does at the present time teach, advocate, and carry out activities having for their objective the over through of the United States government...pursuant to directives of the Soviet Union...for the purposes of defending and protecting the Soviet Union..."

Therefore, like the Czech party and all Red parties in the international conspiracy, the Communist Party of the USA "is committed to the subversive parliamentary tactics and objectives outlined in the Kozak document, the "Fundamentals of Marxism-Leninism," the manifesto of 81 Communist parties in 1960, and all other orders and directives sanctioned or dictated by Moscow.

If Communists are to be thwarted from making further penetrations of the "enemy's camp" in this country, it would seem incumbent upon every American voter to adopt a more careful interest in his own political party and especially in primary elections. All too often, primaries are ignored or considered of secondary importance by the general public; thus militant Communist conspirators, by default, win greater influence on the vital matter of selecting the candidates who will run for office.

Communists have made significant penetrations of parliaments in many of the other long-established free world nations. As of January 1960, they held 25 percent of the national parliamentary seats in Finland, 17 percent in Iceland, and 24 percent in Italy. Now the Reds are confident they can make even faster and more extensive progress in both older and newly-emerging nations -- as they have in British Guiana -- with the subtle infiltration of parliaments. The joint statement by delegations from 81 Communist parties which met in Moscow in 1960 said:

            Whatever form of dictatorship of the proletariat is established, it will always signify an extension of democracy, a transition from formal, bourgeois democracy to genuine democracy [Communism], to democracy for working people.

In his January 6, 1961, address, Khrushchev said:

            The transition to socialism in countries with developed parliamentary traditions may be effected by utilizing Parliament and in other countries by utilizing institutions conforming to their national traditions. In this case it is a question of using the parliamentary form and not the bourgeois Parliament as such in order to place it at the service of the people (i.e., the Communist Party)....

Jan Kozak gives further impetus to the general realization that newly emerging nations are a primary target of the Reds:

            In the interest of their further development, they (newly emerging nations) are obliged to cooperate with the socialist camp and thus to strike new blows at world capitalism.

In the October 29, 1961, issue of "This Week" magazine, Petr Zenkl, vice premier of Czechoslovakia and a member of its Parliament at the time of the Red takeover, confirms that the Communists used his country as a "dress rehearsal" for new "techniques to undermine free governments without the use of military force." He compares Kozak's document in importance

to Lenin's "State and Revolution" and Hitler's "Mein Kampf." He describes it as "a frightening blueprint of the things the Communists hope to accomplish." Zenkl also points out that the Reds are now repeating in the United Nations the same parliamentary trickery which succeeded for them in Czechoslovakia . (Ironically, the Soviets used the "parliament" of the United Nations to veto a 1948 move to study the circumstances surrounding the fall of Czechoslovakia.)

In reflecting on how the Reds were able to overthrow the non-Communist majority in the Parliament of this native land, Zenkl says:

            While democratic Czechoslovakia's defeat was composed of many factors, one important element facilitating the Communist march to power was our wishful thinking. We believed that Communists could be transformed into partners in the parliamentary sense. The contrary happened. While taking part in Czechoslovakia's Parliament, they successfully followed Kozak's commandment:

            "Not to lose sight for a single moment of the aim of a complete socialist overthrow."

But now the secret in out--in Kozak's book of revelation. Read it and heed it, gentlemen of the Free World, while you are free. For those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. [emphasis in original]

Steven Montgomery