Bergonian Communists




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The Communist Party, a strictly Marxist party, was organized in 1875.  It was organized by Europeans in the coastal cities and originally named the Communist Workers Party.  It sent delegates to the First International.  They became deeply influenced by the English trade unionists they met there, and returned to Bergonia with redoubled dedication to start trade unions.  They steadfastly maintained that they were a revolutionary party and refused to run candidates for election.  They took the position that Bergonia had just completed a stage of bourgeoisie revolution which entailed the effective demise of feudalism.  Some of them argued that Bergonia was not yet ready for a proletarian revolution.  Others broke with the trade unionist strategy, and argued that the party should be purely "political" and organize for the ultimate revolution.

Many Bergonian workers fought capitalism by borrowing Socialism (including Marxism) from Europe, even though Marxism was as alien to them as anything else European.  Because Bergonia was (mainly) a non-European nation, its situation was tinged with colonialism/imperialism, which created some paradoxes.  Bergonia's development roughly paralleled the Russian, Chinese and Vietnamese pattern of  borrowing a western philosophy as a way of opposing western hegemony.  Thus, Marxism fed off the burgeoning labor movement in Bergonia and grew with it.  Since this was the most European inspired of the radical movements, it attracted many European whites.  It was especially strong in the coastal cities, and it found adherents among the Christianized atrei.

Before 1910 the Bergonian Communist Party followed the Marxian line that favored violent revolution.  In 1913 the party split into two wings.  The majority "right" wing, led by Alisor Pujorimec, took a milder line and preferred to collaborate with the "Democrats" and anarchists in a grand left coalition in preparation for broad-based revolution, which then the Communists could steer along the correct socialist line.  The minority "left" wing believed that the Democratic Front was becoming a reformist bourgeoisie movement, that the anarchist were competitors, and that true Marxist communists should go it alone.  Though the party was badly split, Pujorimec became party chairman in 1920.

The "Bergcoms" joined the Comintern (Communist International) and attended the first congress in Moscow.  The Russian Communist Party, the only one among them that had succeeded in a revolutionary takeover, came to dominate the Comintern, and sadly, most of the world's communist parties became deferential to it.  Then, after Lenin died in 1923, Stalin used the Comintern to restrain and control the communist parties in other countries.  He laid down the line that they should not push toward premature revolution.  He stated that a number of years would pass, perhaps decades, before revolution would occur in any other country, as he developed his "socialism in one country" doctrine, which (along with history itself) defied Marx's expectations.  Because the Bolshevik revolution occurred as a result of WWI, Stalin apparently believed that  Western Europe would see revolution only as a result of some future war-- and he did (correctly) believe that a second great war would surely come.  Some western communists did as the Comintern directed.  Others suffered the wrath of the Comintern, and in time came around after slow, patient culling of the leaders (often by assassination).  In fact, one can fairly accuse Stalin of restraining revolutionary activinty in other countries because he didn't want to lose the exclusive focus of international socialism.

Trotsky, in contrast, adopted an "internationalist" line.  He argued that the Soviet Union should assist the communists of other nations in advancing their own revolutions.  Pujorimec adopted this line as well, and held that revolution in Bergonia should not be delayed.  But other party leaders followed the Comintern line and stymied him.  He remained party chairman largely by affecting a conversion to the Comintern line.  Following Lenin's death the Bergcoms superficially became good and loyal fans of the Soviet communists.  As Pujorimec at the time wrote, "there is no doctrinal divergence on these points worth considering, since every communist agrees that no revolutionary situation exists at present, at least in Bergonia."

Many Bergonian communists, including Pujorimec, visited the Soviet Union and did not like what they saw.  It has often been argued that Soviet dictatorship, no less than Czarist tyranny, manifested some deeply engrained habits of the Russian mind.  The Bergonian world-view of course drastically differs from the Russian, and therefore Bergonian communists had predispositions quite antithetical to ham-fisted Leninism.  Though the party under Pujorimec followed the Comintern line, it resisted Comintern interference in its affairs, though often in a very indirect way.  They were facially very agreeable with Comintern orders, but simply neglected to implement many of them.  The Comintern often ordered individual revolutionaries in the parties of other countries to come to Moscow and perform work, and Stalin used this as a means of isolating leaders he disliked.  In this one respect Pujorimec openly defied Stalin, refusing to let many party members leave the country. 

Tensions between Moscow and the Bergonian party became chronic, especially with the wave of very tough and violent strikes that shook the country in 1926.  A series of messages from Moscow advised the Bergonian party to not allow matters to get out of had.  These messages were received coldly.  On 11 November 1926 a bomb went off in a union hall in Iarlotoi, Sefaiari just after Pujorimec and most of his clique had left when the meeting concluded early.  The bomb had been planted in the basement under the closed meeting room where Pujorimec had been meeting with his cohorts and allies.  Not everyone had left the room, unfortunately, and Pujorimec's eldest son was among the casualties.  It was very hard for anyone to argue that police or rightwing conspirators cold have gotten into the building, much less the basement, and Stalinist loyalists were among both the union leadership and the local Communist Party membership.

The 1927 expulsion of Trotsky from the party in Russia made a bad impression on the Bercoms.  Pujorimec, sensing the moment, denounced Moscow in a national party congress speech, and the party reacted by rallying around him.  The Berg Party remained in the Comintern, but in an uneasy truce with Stalin.  Pujorimec was now free for the first time to pursue his strategy of uniting with the other leftists.  Trotsky himself visited Pujorimec on his way to exile in Mexico and embraced Pujorimec and the members of the Bercom politburo.

Thereafter, Pujorimec reached out to the constituents of the Democratic Front, both socialists and anarchists, having concluded that a potentially revolutionary situation was developing.  As the clouds of trouble blacked the sky after the international stock market crash in late 1929, people openly debated whether the Communists should join the DF, and finally the party's central committee openly advised its members to vote in the 1930 national elections for DF candidates.  

In the chaos of the ensuing revolutionary chaos, the Communist Party became a partner with the Rosists.  The Rosists abandoned their DF partners in joining up with the Communists, and together they took over the non-Kilitan part of the country in 1932.  Pujimorec became Co-President.  Their "Radical Regime" lasted a full year, although it never succeeded in suppressing or completely controlling the other leftists, who retained their various local power bases.  

The Communists did develop a revolutionary state security apparatus by dominating the Committee of Revolutionary Justice and used it to target chosen enemies, especially among the Mistrala faction of the DF.  The Communists foolishly abused their authority by going aggressively after the churches of Bergonia.  Their campaign against religion predictably stirred up deep, passionate consternation.  They foolishly went after all their enemies at once-- the churches, the syndicalists, the anarchists, the trade unionists-- instead of taking them down patiently, one by one. 

Commandos of unknown affiliation brazenly assassinated Pujorimec on 3 August 1933.  After a vigorous flurry of infighting, the communists chose Trevor Locksley their new chairman, and soon he became Co-President.  Locksley was more faithful to Stalin's line than Pujorimec.  He personally supervised the operations of the Committee of Revolutionary Justice, and was generally regarded as much viler than Pujorimec.  

His abuses prompted all the communists' enemies to join together against the Radical Regime, The pressure induced the Rosists to repudiate the communists in the summer of 1934.  With this switch, the Radical Regime collapsed and the communists en masse were expelled from the government.  The Mistralas insisted on a purge of all communists from government positions. 

The Mistralas and anarchists were the victors to emerge from the spring of 1934, and the Rosists salvaged their position with a strategic betrayal brokered by Acuila, leaving the communists as the sole losers.  The new socialist Commonwealth did not outlaw or suppress the communists.  It did not need to.  The communists had so discredited themselves that they lost all popular support, and their frustration peaked in the disastrous communist uprising in Cationi that summer, resulting in hundreds dead and thousands rounded up and placed in camps with Kilitan prisoners.  

The party fell into intramural squabbling, with most following Trotsky.  Ultimately a new generation of leaders emerged, and in 1945 the party formally denounced Leninism and the Soviet line.  It still regards itself as a Marxist party, and understands that it exists in a post-revolutionary context, and can contribute to the evolving post-revolutionary, "pre-communist" development from a Marxist perspective.  The same year it became the last leftist party or group in the country to endorse the Eight Principles, including controversial #7.