Ted Grant was one of the leading Western Trotskyist theorists for decades, and many of his predictions about the Soviet Union, China and the revolutions in the developing world turned out to be remarkably prescient. Even though, Trotskyism lacked a mass party of working class base in any country. In reality, Stalinism was a counterrevolutionary movement that suppressed the masses and even the Communist Parties in favor of a bureaucratic police state. Stalin’s Russia was a “military police-state” that offered a “ready-made Bonapartist model” to underdeveloped countries like China, Cuba, Algeria, Burma, Vietnam and many others, but it was not Marxist since none of these regime sand ruling parties were based on mass revolutionary movements of the working class (Grant 1964). It was similar to fascism in many ways, except that the economy was nationalized by the state, while Grant regarded fascism as the “naked weapon of capitalist class rule” (Grant 1948). Both Stalinism and fascism destroyed all independent labor unions and working class parties, though, and represented a mentality for which there was always a great deal of sympathy in the military, police and bureaucracies of all capitalist states (Grant 1948). Grant predicated that the Soviet satellite regimes in Eastern Europe and other areas would eventually collapse for lack of popular support, and that the Chinese Stalinists would end up taking the capitalist road of economic development and indeed both did occur in the 1980s and 1990s. At the same time, he also insisted capitalism would eventually face another crisis like the 1930s, and this would lead to a revival of real mass revolutionary movements in the West. So far, though, this has not happened. He was also correct that the various national Stalinist bureaucracies would attempt to make alliances with the Western imperial powers, which did occur in the case of China and Yugoslavia.
What events led to different nations taking the route of Russian bureaucracy?
From the Trotskyite viewpoint, the Stalinist regime in the Soviet Union was a totalitarian police state and oppressive bureaucracy, similar to fascism or Bonapartism. Marx had always predicted that “revolution would come in the advanced capitalist countries”, but this never occurred (Grant 1964). Instead, the revolutions had taken place in poor, underdeveloped countries where both the bourgeoisie and working class were weak, and this led to “monstrous distortions in the nature of the state created by the revolutions” (Grant 1964). No liberal-democratic revolutions had ever occurred in countries like Russia, China, Cuba or Vietnam, and in the underdeveloped countries, the bourgeoisie were too small and impotent to fulfill the same role that it had in the West. Peasants had really made the revolutions in many of these poorer nations, but Grant argued that the “peasantry cannot play an independent
What were Stalin’s foreign policies?
World War II had two major...