Like recycled waste, Leninism has resurfaced in our country hand in hand with the new Made in Venezuela party. When foreign media talk about this party, they happily label it as populist. Wrong. It is a much dangerous creature: hardcore Leninism. Having been born as the outcome of an economic crisis, widespread corruption, and a lackluster political culture, it has thrived as a result of the suicidal alliances of a paralyzed and baffled socialism and of the protective covering fire that the governing party has irresponsibly provided to its benefit through the media and other institutions. Within this framework it seems timely to briefly review Lenin’s history.
As ringleader of the coup d’état which in 1917 overthrew the Russian provisional republican government of socialist Kerensky (the Tsar had abdicated of the throne eight months earlier), Lenin agreed to hold elections, but after winning only 24% of votes cast he closed down Parliament, dissolved the Assembly, and remained as absolute dictator until shortly before his early death in 1924. It was only the support provided by the German government, which sought to destabilize its enemy, Russia, which allowed Lenin to organize the Bolshevik party and return to his native land from exile in comfortable Switzerland. Polish-American historian Richard Pipes, Professor Emeritus at Harvard and possibly the world’s leading expert on the Soviet Union, explains that the German government “loaned him funds to rebuild his party upon his return to Russia”. Lenin “was not concerned about the source of the funds as long as it served his purposes”; if we substitute Germany by Venezuela, does it not become a familiar scene?
Communism therefore did not reach Russia as the outcome of a popular uprising, but rather by means of a coup d’état launched by a very well organized small minority financed by a foreign country, “concealed by democratic rhetoric”, as is the case among Spanish Leninists of the present. While Lenin chose an efficient slogan to hide his true intentions: “peace, bread, land”, his present heirs refer to evictions, caste, and corruption. Lenin’s true aim, however, was – in his own words – “a power limited by nothing, by no laws, absolutely unrestricted by any regulation, directly underpinned by coercion”. According to Pipes, Lenin was “totally prepared to take recourse to unlimited terror in order to destroy his opponents and intimidate the population”. His weapon of choice was total, merciless violence, a term he constantly employed, implemented unequivocally as of the outset of his exercise of power “after having abolished all judicial procedures and having handed over the rule of law to revolutionary courts”. In fact, the evil became the good: according to Anne Applebaum, journalist and historian, winner of the Pulitzer prize for her oeuvre “Gulag: A History”, Lenin was “ambivalent regarding imprisonment and punishment of common criminals (thieves, murderers), whom he saw as potential allies” (do we now understand the ambiguity or, in fact, the defense made by Spanish Leninists of violent anti-system groups and terrorists?). In 1918 Lenin himself categorically stated that refusal to use weapons was as non-Marxist as refusing to make use of violence: “when we are reproached for our cruelty I sometimes wonder how people can forget the most elementary Marxism”. As a result of agrarian collectivization, forced by duress and mired in blood – Lenin issued written instructions to hang the more wealthy peasants “so that the people may be witness” –, cereal harvests decreased by 40%, which resulted in a famine causing 5 million deaths. Rather than attempting to alleviate the famine, Lenin opted to allow it to continue, in the belief that it provided a “unique opportunity” to seize the property of the Orthodox Church, under the guise of making use of it to feed the hungry. However, such confiscated property was not used to assuage hunger but to finance Bolshevik activities. Lenin himself stated in his characteristic cold fashion: “It is in fact now, while in the regions ravaged by hunger the people are eating human flesh and thousands of corpses are strewn in the streets, that we may continue so as to achieve a complete confiscation of Church properties by means of the most savage and ruthless drive in order to amass a fund of several hundred million rubles”. This led to mass large-scale strikes, quashed by Lenin through the use of the most brutal means, including the use of chemical weapons… against his fellow citizens. Pipes’ insightful psychological portrait of Lenin reveals the embodiment of a psychopath to whom “human suffering means nothing” and who accepted, absolutely and as a matter of fact, that mass murder was a necessary factor of revolution. “His foremost characteristic was hate and his passion, to destroy”. Within a span of no more than three years his economic policies caused the collapse of the Russian economy, doubled unemployment, and lowered industrial production by 80%, an unprecedented catastrophe that condemned the Russian people to penury. Finally, in addition, we may add that Lenin invented the concentration camp – the Gulag –, massively expanded first by Stalin and then by Hitler.
According to R.J. Rummel, historian specialized in genocide, Lenin was responsible for approximately 3 million deaths within a 5-year period, including 800,000 executions carried out during what is known as the Red Terror, but not including the victims of the Russian Civil War. Stalin, Lenin’s favorite pupil and successor, built up on his master´s work by murdering between 25 and 40 million Russians in the following thirty years of dictatorship. These horrifying figures, unrivalled in the history of humanity, demonstrate that the two leading figures in the Soviet communist genocide acted without interruption. French philosopher Jean-François Revel understood perfectly well, and posits, “We must recognize that Stalinism is nothing but Leninism, given that the pious myth of a Lenin betrayed by Stalin does not hold up to an analysis of Lenin’s political career”. Molotov, who worked closely with both dictators, when asked decades later which of the two was the more severe, answered: “Undoubtedly Lenin. I witnessed how Lenin criticized Stalin for his excessive softness”. What’s more, Nobel Prize winner Alexandr Solzhenitsyn, defender of human rights, who was sentenced to Siberia and was a Gulag survivor, openly compared Lenin with Hitler. In spite of all the facts, Lenin has historically benefited from the cunning propaganda manoeuver played out by Stalin’s successor Khrushchev who, in 1956, and believing it to be politically well-timed to denounce the inconceivable magnitude of the crimes of Stalinism, reinvented the person of a (non-existent) Lenin, kind and idealistic, who could (now) be set off against Stalin the butcher: by averting that the Soviet revolution be left as an orphan, the legitimacy of the regime was retained.
Now you know Lenin. Well, then: the current ringleader of the existing Spanish Leninist party, praised by a widely-known communist as “the adapter of Lenin to the present circumstances”, is a worshipper of the Russian mass murderer, his master, to whom he warmly refers as “the baldhead with a prodigious mind”. The now-silent past ideologue of his party makes use of an oxymoron to summarize his ideology: “we are a kind, friendly Leninism”. In other words, a healthy cancer. That is: tyranny plus a ration card. The downfall of Spain. Let it be clear.