Cominform

Last updated
Communist Information Bureau
FoundedOctober 5, 1947
DissolvedApril 17, 1956
Preceded by Comintern
Headquarters Belgrade, Yugoslavia (1947–1948)
Bucharest, Romania (1948–1956)
NewspaperFor Lasting Peace, for People's Democracy!
Ideology
Colours     Red

Founded on October 5, 1947, Cominform (from Communist Information Bureau) is the common name for what was officially referred to as the Information Bureau of the Communist and Workers' Parties. [1] It was the first official forum of the International Communist Movement since the dissolution of the Comintern and confirmed the new realities after World War II, including the creation of an Eastern Bloc.

World War II 1939–1945 global war

World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.

Eastern Bloc 20th-century group of socialist states of Central and Eastern Europe

The Eastern Bloc was the group of Communist states of Central and Eastern Europe, East Asia and Southeast Asia under the hegemony of the Soviet Union (USSR) during the Cold War (1947–1991) in opposition to the non-Communist Western Bloc. Generally, in Western Europe the term Eastern Bloc comprised the USSR and its East European satellite-states in the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (Comecon); in Asia, the Socialist bloc comprised the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, the Lao People's Democratic Republic and the People's Republic of Kampuchea; the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and the People's Republic of China ; and in the Americas, the Communist Bloc included the Caribbean Republic of Cuba, since 1961.

Contents

Overview

The intended purpose of Cominform was to coordinate actions between Communist parties under Soviet direction. It was not intended to be a replacement or successor to the Comintern. The Cominform was not a world Communist party, it did not have subordinates or power, other than its publication. It had its own newspaper, For Lasting Peace, for People's Democracy! It limited itself to one goal: "to organize an exchange of experience, and where necessary to coordinate the activity of the Communist parties, on the basis of mutual agreement." [2] In other aspects, Cominform was also used to repel anti-communist expansion. [3] The French and Italian parties were tasked specifically with the obstruction of the implementation of the Marshall Plan and the Truman Doctrine. [4] Cominform divided the world into imperialist and anti-imperialist. [5]

Communist International International political organization

The Communist International (Comintern), known also as the Third International (1919–1943), was an international organization that advocated world communism. The Comintern resolved at its Second Congress to "struggle by all available means, including armed force, for the overthrow of the international bourgeoisie and the creation of an international Soviet republic as a transition stage to the complete abolition of the state". The Comintern had been preceded by the 1916 dissolution of the Second International.

Marshall Plan U.S. initiative to help Western Europe recover from WWII

The Marshall Plan was an American initiative passed in 1948 to aid Western Europe, in which the United States gave over $12 billion in economic assistance to help rebuild Western European economies after the end of World War II. Replacing the previous Morgenthau Plan, it operated for four years beginning on April 3, 1948. The goals of the United States were to rebuild war-torn regions, remove trade barriers, modernize industry, improve European prosperity, and prevent the spread of Communism. The Marshall Plan required a lessening of interstate barriers, a dropping of many regulations, and encouraged an increase in productivity, as well as the adoption of modern business procedures.

Truman Doctrine US policy to contain communism in Europe and elsewhere during the Cold War

The Truman Doctrine was an American foreign policy whose stated purpose was to counter Soviet geopolitical expansion during the Cold War. It was announced to Congress by President Harry S. Truman on March 12, 1947, and further developed on July 12, 1948, when he pledged to contain threats in Greece and Turkey. Direct American military force was usually not involved, but Congress appropriated financial aid to support the economies and militaries of Greece and Turkey. More generally, the Truman Doctrine implied American support for other nations allegedly threatened by Soviet communism. The Truman Doctrine became the foundation of American foreign policy, and led, in 1949, to the formation of NATO, a military alliance that is still in effect. Historians often use Truman's speech to date the start of the Cold War.

Cominform was a Soviet-dominated organization of Communist parties founded in September 1947 at a conference of Communist party leaders in Szklarska Poręba, Poland. It was founded with nine members, the Communist parties of the U.S.S.R., Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Yugoslavia, France, and Italy. Soviet leader Joseph Stalin called the conference in response to divergences among communist governments on whether or not to attend the Paris Conference on the Marshall Plan in July 1947.

Soviet Union 1922–1991 country in Europe and Asia

The Soviet Union, officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), was a socialist state in Eurasia that existed from 30 December 1922 to 26 December 1991. Nominally a union of multiple national Soviet republics, its government and economy were highly centralized. The country was a one-party state, governed by the Communist Party with Moscow as its capital in its largest republic, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic. Other major urban centres were Leningrad, Kiev, Minsk, Alma-Ata, and Novosibirsk. It spanned over 10,000 kilometres east to west across 11 time zones, and over 7,200 kilometres north to south. It had five climate zones: tundra, taiga, steppes, desert and mountains.

Communist party Political party that promotes communist philosophy and values

A communist party is a political party that seeks to realize the social and economic goals of communism through both revolutionary means and state policy. The name was popularized in the title of the 1848 tract of Manifesto of the Communist Party by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. A communist party is the Vanguard party of the working class (proletariat), whether ruling or non-ruling. As a ruling party, the communist party exercises power in the name of the dictatorship of the proletariat. The idea of communist party dictatorship was heavily influenced by Vladimir Lenin's writings during the first two decades of the twentieth century when Russian social democracy divided into Bolshevik and Menshevik factions. Lenin, the leader of the Bolsheviks, argued that a revolutionary party should be a small vanguard party with a centralized political command and a strict cadre policy emphasizing subservience to the party's decisions. In contrast, the Menshevik faction, including members like Trotsky, argued that the party should not neglect the important role to be played by the masses in a communist revolution. The Bolshevik party, which eventually became the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU), took power in Russia after the October Revolution in 1917. With the creation of the Communist International (Comintern) in 1919, the concept of communist party leadership was adopted by many revolutionary parties worldwide. In an effort to standardize this movement and maintain centralized control over its affiliated parties, the Comintern required its members to call themselves communist. They were subsequently known as Leninist or, later, Marxist-Leninist parties. The doctrine of Leninism was standardized and popularized by Joseph Stalin in 1924 in the party handbook, Foundations of Leninism.

Szklarska Poręba Place in Lower Silesian, Poland

Szklarska Poręba is a town in Jelenia Góra County, Lower Silesian Voivodeship, in south-western Poland. The town has a population of around 7,000. It is a popular ski resort.

Cominform was initially located in Belgrade (then the capital of the Federative People's Republic of Yugoslavia). After the expulsion of Yugoslavia from the group in June 1948, the seat was moved to Bucharest, Romania. The expulsion of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia from Cominform for Titoism initiated the Informbiro period in that country's history. One of the most decisive factors that led to the expulsion of Yugoslavia was their commitment to the insurgency in Greece, and their decision to station troops in Albania. [6]

Belgrade City in Serbia

Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. The urban area of the City of Belgrade has a population of 1.23 million, while nearly 1.7 million people live within its administrative limits.

Bucharest Capital of Romania

Bucharest is the capital and largest city of Romania, as well as its cultural, industrial, and financial centre. It is located in the southeast of the country, at 44°25′57″N26°06′14″E, on the banks of the Dâmbovița River, less than 60 km (37.3 mi) north of the Danube River and the Bulgarian border.

Titoism Josip Broz Titos Yugoslav doctrine in Cold War international politics

Titoism is described as the post-World War II policies and practices associated with Josip Broz Tito during the Cold War, characterized by an opposition to the Soviet Union.

The newspaper was published in several languages. It was originally printed in Belgrade; it was moved to Bucharest after the expulsion of the Yugoslavian party. [7] A vast array of articles was published, including some from the Canadian Communist Party. [8]

The Cominform was dissolved on April 17, 1956, after the Soviet rapprochement with Yugoslavia and the process of De-Stalinization. [4]

In international relations, a rapprochement, which comes from the French word rapprocher, is a re-establishment of cordial relations between two countries. This may be done due to a mutual enemy, as was the case with Germany for France and the United Kingdom and their signing of the Entente Cordiale. It has also been done, particularly in the cold war between the Soviet Union and the United States, in an effort to reduce tensions and the likelihood of war.

Meetings

There are four recorded meetings of the Cominform, before 1956. The first was the founding meeting. This occurred in Poland, 1947. Members present at the first meeting were Kardelj and Djilas for Yugoslavia, Chervenkov and Poptomov for Bulgaria, Gheorghiu-Dej and Anna Pauker for Romania, Farkas and Revai for Hungary, Gomulka and Minc for Poland, Zhdanov and Malenkov for the U.S.S.R., Duclos and Frajon for France, Slánský and Bastovanski for Czechoslovakia, and Longo and Reala [ disambiguation needed ] for Italy. Zhdanov was chairman, Gomulka was appointed vice-chairman. [9]

The second meeting occurred in Yugoslavia in January 1948. During this meeting, a permanent editorial board was chosen for the newspaper. This editorial board was under the leadership of Yugoslav national, P. Yudin. He was succeeded by U.S.S.R. national, M. Mitin, after the Yugoslavian expulsion. A third meeting occurred in Romania in June 1948. This resulted in the expulsion of the Yugoslav Communist party. Lastly, the fourth meeting was held in Hungary in November 1949. [7]

Member parties

See also

Footnotes

  1. Healey, Denis. "The Cominform and World Communism". International Affairs. 24, 3: 339–349.
  2. Timmerman, Heinz (Spring 1985). "The cominform effects on Soviet foreign policy". Studies in Comparative Communism. 18, 1: 3–23.
  3. Hunt, Michael (2013). The World Transformed: 1945 to the Present. Oxford University Press. p. 38. ISBN   9780199371020.
  4. 1 2 "Cominform". Britannica Academic. 3 February 2017.
  5. Deery and Redfern (May 2005). "No Lasting Peace? Labor, Communism and the Cominform: Australia and Great Britain, 1945-50". Labour History. 88: 63–86.
  6. Swain, Geoffrey (1 March 2010). "The Cominform: Tito's International?". The Historical Journal. 35, Issue 3: 641–663.
  7. 1 2 Morris, Bernard S. (April 1953). "The Cominfom: A Five-Year Perspective". World Politics. 5, 3: 368–376.
  8. Black, J. L. (Spring 1988). "The Stalinist Image of Canada The Cominform and Soviet Press, 1947-1955". Labour / Le Travail. 21: 153–171.
  9. G.I. (May 1950). "The Evolution of the Cominform 1947-1950". The World Today. 6, 5: 213–228.

Further reading

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