Fifteenth Conference of the All-Union Communist Party Bolshevik
Fifteenth Conference of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolshevik)
a conference of the ACP(B) held in Moscow from Oct. 26 to Nov. 3, 1926. It was attended by 194 delegates with a casting vote and 640 with a consultative vote. The agenda included reports on the international situation (read by N. I. Bukharin), on the country’s economic situation and the party’s tasks (A. I. Rykov), on the achievements and current tasks of the trade unions (M. P. Tomskii), and on the opposition and the intraparty situation (J. V. Stalin). The conference was held at the time of struggle against the Trotskyist-Zinovievist antiparty bloc (formed in the summer of 1926), whose leaders tried to revise V. I. Lenin’s teachings and alter the decisions of the Fourteenth Conference and Fourteenth Congress of the ACP(B) concerning the possibility of building socialism in the USSR. In its resolution On the Report of the ACP(B) Delegates to the Executive Committee of the Comintern, the conference resolutely condemned the factional activity of the Trotskyist-Zinovievist bloc in the Comintern and enjoined the ACP(B) delegates to the Comintern Executive Committee to continue the fight against anti-Leninist deviations in the Comintern.
The conference summed up the development of the country’s economy in 1925–26, confirming in its decision that the period of reconstruction had ended and that the socialist national economy had entered the period of modernization. The conference adopted a resolution stating that “we must strive to overtake and then surpass in a relatively short historical period the level of industrial development in the advanced capitalist countries” (KPSS v rezoliutsiiakh, 8th ed., vol. 3, 1970, p. 365).
The conference condemned the erroneous and harmful proposals of the leaders of the Trotskyist-Zinovievist bloc that the country be industrialized by imposing high taxes on the peasants and by raising prices on manufactured goods because such a policy would inevitably undermine agriculture and slow down industrialization. The conference pointed out that industrialization should be financed by the acculumation of resources in socialist industry, by the use—through the state budget—of the earnings of other branches of the national economy, and by the use of the personal savings of the population.
Special emphasis was placed on an all-out increase in labor productivity as the decisive factor in attaining victory over capitalism. Although it called for austerity, the conference also warned against attempts to achieve it at the expense of the vital interests of the working class. To strengthen the economic and organizational activity of the Soviet state, it was decided to fundamentally improve the structure of the economic apparatus. The conference established the objectives for the 1926–27 economic year—to increase industrial output by 17 or 18 percent (more than 20 percent in heavy industry) and to accelerate the development of machine building, electrification, metallurgy, the fuel industry, and transportation, all industries on which the growth of the national economy as a whole depended. The planning of the new location of productive forces simultaneously solved the problem of bringing industrial enterprises closer to the source of raw materials and the problem of creating industrial centers in the backward national regions.
With respect to agriculture, practical measures were proposed to develop the productive forces, to strengthen and expand socialist forms of economic organization (agricultural cooperatives, sovkhozes, kolkhozes), and to further consolidate the alliance of the working class with the bulk of the peasantry. The conference outlined a program to expand the role of the trade unions in the struggle to establish strict economy, to improve the work of production conferences at enterprises, and to strengthen the communist upbringing of the masses.
The conference devoted much attention to the question of the opposition and the intraparty situation. On this matter the conference adopted the resolution On the Opposition Bloc in the ACP(B), which described the Trotskyist-Zinovievist bloc as a Social Democratic, Menshevik deviation in the party on the basic question of the nature and prospects of the October Revolution of 1917. The conference upheld the party’s position on the victory of socialism in the USSR under conditions of capitalist encirclement and exposed the defeatist nature of Trotskyism, which denied the possibility of building socialism in the USSR in the absence of revolutions in the advanced European countries.
REFERENCESXV konferentsiia VKP(b): Stenograficheskii otchet. Moscow-Leningrad, 1927.
KPSS v rezoliutsiiakh i resheniiakh s”ezdov, konferentsii iplenumov TsK, 8th ed., vol. 3. Moscow, 1970.
Istoriia KPSS, vol. 4, book 1. Moscow, 1970.