6 October 2020

How they try to ban The Leninist

From the ‘Letters’ section, originally published in The Leninist No.15 December 1984. Available on our archive here


To us

Dear comrades,
with reference to your recent advert for the November issue of The Leninist, we are attaching a copy of a letter received  from Nina Temple and our reply.

We shall be glad to have your comments.

Yours fraternally,
Mary Rosser
Chief executive

Nina to Mary

Dear comrade,
I am writing to raise the ‘Leninist‘ advertisement with you. As you will have seen in Focus (photocopy enclosed) the May EC of the Party took an attitude in relation to the Leninist. Whilst this wouldn’t necessarily effect the Star, as you are not a Party journal, there are two points that I want to raise with you as a result of the most recent advertisements.

Firstly, there is no address or clear indication as to what organisation actually produces this journal. I had understood the Star always insists on precisely this information for meetings being advertised, partly to protect the consumer but also to protect the paper, and I can’t understand why this doesn’t equally apply to journals.

Secondly however, (and this is why I’m raising this matter again at this time), in the latest advertisements for this journal the impression is given that this journal is produced by the CPGB. In fact it says ‘produced by the Leninist of the CPGB’. I want to make it clear that we do not have anything whatsoever to do with this journal, in fact we object strongly to its contents as is made clear in our EC minute.

I would ask you to make this clear to your readers by not in future accepting any advertisements which give a false impression of an association between the Communist Party and this journal.

I await your reply, best wishes,
Nina Temple.

Mary to Nina

Dear Nina
Thank you for your letter dated 1.10.84 together with a photo-copy of the report in Focus.

The problem, as I see it, is that in the past this advert has been accepted including in it the phrase you mention and yet no objection had been made.

So as to not drive a coach and horses through the advertising policy here, surely the best way of preventing the Leninist from appearing is for the EC to make its position known to the comrades involved. I’m sure that would prove a more direct and effective way of dealing with this problem.

Yours fraternally,
Mary Rosser
Chief Executive

From us

Dear comrade Rosser,
We do not find it surprising that comrade Temple is asking you not to accept adverts from The Leninist “which give a false impression of an association” between our paper and the Communist Party. Of course, what comrade Temple means by “the Communist Party” is her faction, which bureaucratically dominates the Executive Committee. Although this faction claims to be the Party this has been shown to be false on a number of important occasions. At this year’s AGM of the PPPS none of the motions sponsored by the EC gained a majority- despite the fact that those attending were overwhelmingly Communist Party members. Even at the last Party Congress it was only the most unprincipled gerrymandering which enabled Temple’s faction to retain its grip over the EC.

Comrade Temple’s faction is itself responsible for creating the rash of “unofficial” Party publications – publications which these hypocrites have the gall to label factional. It is their running of the Party machine, their exclusion of Party members from the columns of Marxism Today, their liquidation of communist principals which is the real factionalism, a factionalism to which The Leninist claims no “association”.

It is public knowledge that the Communist Party has deep divisions. Very many Party members support the Morning Star against the EC’s attempt to turn it into a daily version of its Marxism Today; the fact that the editors of the Morning Star have refused to prostrate themselves before the EC has led to comrade Temple and Co branding them, and we presume the Star itself, as factionalist. Indeed, all publications which emanate from the Party but refuse to worship at the shrine of Eurocommunism: Straight Left, Communist, Artery, Education for Today, The Leninist; the pamphlets by ‘Charlie Woods’, Jim Arnison, ‘Questro’, Ben Fine et al; are all branded “factionalist” by the factionalists of factionalists who dominate the EC.

While we around The Leninist have important differences with other trends who stand in opposition to Eurocommunism, one thing unites us all – we will not let the Euros get away with breaking the link between the Communist Party and the working class. To this link all formal discipline must be subordinated. In the face of attempts to break it all genuine communist have a duty to organise disciplined rebellion, something not surprising that comrade Temple finds objectionable. So it is clear that her worry about protecting Morning Star readers is eyewash; she has no concern to “protect”  them or the Morning Star. For someone who was directed by the PC of the Party to investigate The Leninist, for someone who claimed to have studied our publications, isn’t it amazing that she can state we have “no address”, that there is no “clear indication as to what organisation” produces The Leninist. She even contradicts herself in this by declaring that in “the latest advertisements of this journal the impression is given that the journal is produced by the CPGB”; this is of course nonsense, as she herself then states that The Leninist is “produced by the Leninists of the CPGB.”

It is quite clear The Leninist has nothing to do with the EC of the CPGB, nor the Eurocommunism of the EC, nor the Marxism Today of the EC; as to the Communist Party and its members, anyone who has ever read the paper, whether they agree with our politics or not, will testify to the fact that we have every justification for stating that it is “produced by the Leninists of the CPGB”.

Yours fraternally,
Paul Fleming
(for The Leninist)

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