Socialist Party of Rumania

Socialist Party of Rumania

 

(SPR; Partidul Socialist din Romania), a party founded at a congress of workers’ circles in Galaji in 1893 as the Social Democratic Party of the Workers of Rumania. The congress adopted a party program, elected governing bodies, and voted a delegation to the Zurich Congress of the Second International, held in 1893. The party organized and led a number of political actions, public meetings, and demonstrations by workers; however, it failed to recognize the peasantry as a revolutionary force. From the outset, the party was weakened by a struggle between the right-wing (“generous”) leaders, including I. Nădejde and V. Morttun, and the revolutionary elements, led by I. C. Frimu and Ş. Georghiu. In 1899 the “generous” members joined the National Liberal Party, and in effect the Social Democratic Party ceased to function.

In 1910 the party was revived as the Social Democratic Party of Rumania (SDPR). This party’s congress of 1910 adopted a program and party rules. The party was determined “to do away with labor exploitation of any kind and to replace exploitation by the socialization of the means of production.” The influence of the reformists prevented the SDPR from working out an agrarian program and leading the trade unions. On the eve of World War I and during the war, the left wing of the SDPR, led by Ş. Georghiu and M. G. Bujor, supported internationalism. SDPR delegates took part in the Zimmerwald Conference of 1915 and helped initiate the Second Inter-Balkan Socialist Conference, also held in 1915. The Rumanian government banned the SDPR in August 1916. The impact of the October Revolution of 1917 caused the SDPR to intensify its activities. In November 1918 the party was legalized and was named the Socialist Party of Rumania. The Declaration of Principles of the SPR of December 1918, the official program of the Rumanian labor movement, defined the ultimate goal of the working-class struggle as the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat and the building of communism.

The left wing of the SPR, based on underground communist groups that had arisen within the party in 1918, grew stronger. In April 1920 the left-wing members, including C. Ivanus, and L. Filipescu, formed the Central Committee of Communist Groups. The struggle between the left wing and the opportunist leadership of the SPR intensified in the summer of 1920. Despite the opposition of the reformists, the party, drawing support from the left wing, organized in October 1920 the general strike of the workers. In February 1921 the party’s General Council passed a resolution to convene a congress to discuss a series of theses; drafted by the Central Committee of Communist Groups, the theses called upon the party to join the Third International. Right-wing reformists who did not agree with this resolution left the SPR in 1921 and founded the Social Democratic Party of Rumania in 1927. In May 1921, when it was free of opportunist influence, the SPR convened to form the Rumanian Communist Party.

E. D. KARPESHCHENKO

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