Stalin and His Hangmen

“Lenin held sacred the famous principle of democratic centralism: decisions reached after a vote in the party’s Central Committee were binding on all. (In fact, where necessary, a minority opinion was massaged into a majority opinion.) Stalin was an adept pupil, as he explained to Molotov:

“Let’s suppose there are 80 people in the Central Committee, of whom 30 take the right position and 50 the wrong one, thus being active enemies of your policy. Why should the majority submit to the minority?…A minority has never expelled a majority. This takes place gradually. Seventy expel 10-15, then 60 expel another 15…And gradually, all this being done in the framework of democratic centralism, without any formal infringement of the rules. Actually, this ends with the minority of the majority remaining in the CC.”

For all his unprincipled remorselessness, his energy and patience, Stalin needed not just the right moment to take power but the right associates, those willing not just to die, but to kill for him.”

From Donald Rayfield.

In the context of South African politics, these words have a familiar ring to it.

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One thought on “Stalin and His Hangmen

  1. Pingback: SELBSTMORDPOGROM an Frau SVOBODA | Die Judenfrage und GFM Radziwiłł de Castellane

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