Third International

The following is a review of The First Five Years of the Communist International, consisting of Trotsky’s writings and speeches related to the tasks of building the Third (Communist) International. This book is rich with lessons for the workers’ struggle today and is a must-read for all aspiring revolutionaries! A new edition, with an introduction by Fred Weston (editor at marxist.com) is available from Wellred Books!

A century ago, on 2-6 March 1919, the first congress of the Third International took place in Moscow. This marked the birth of the Communist International, which became a vital school of revolutionary ideas and strategy. Rob Sewell (editor of Socialist Appeal, British journal of the IMT) looks back on this momentous event.

Tomorrow marks the 92nd anniversary of the Russian Revolution. For the first time the working class conquered state power and at least began the task of the socialist transfomation of society. Listen here to this meeting of the ULU Marxist Society where Fred Weston, editor of the website 'In Defence of Marxism' (marxist.com), speaks on the Russian Revolution and the founding of the Comintern.

This year marks the 90th anniversary of the founding of the Communist International. Mick Brooks spoke at a recent Socialist Appeal Day School on the rise of the "world party of socialist revolution" under Lenin and Trotsky and its subsequent political and bureaucratic degeneration under Stalin.

Much has changed since this document was first produced, and we have continually refined and updated our perspectives and analysis in subsequent books and articles.  However, the historical value of this document, especially those parts concerning the history of the internationals, the rise of proletarian Bonapartism, and the post-WWII period retain their full force and value.

The official dissolution of the Communist International comes almost ten years after the proclamation by Leon Trotsky that the Third International was dead as the world instrument for the socialist revolution. It was on July 15, 1933 that Trotsky wrote his theses, reprinted here, in justification of this conclusion and the need of building the Fourth International.

"It is the aim of this pamphlet to indicate, at least in its general outline, the composition of the political world situation today, as it has resulted from the fundamental contradictions of decaying capitalism, complicated and sharpened by the severe commercial, industrial, and financial crisis."