‘Letter of the Communist Party National Committee to the President and Congress of the U.S.A.’ by Earl Browder and William Z. Foster from The Communist. Vol. 18 No. 19. October, 1939.

CP National Convention, Chicago, September, 1939.
‘Letter of the Communist Party National Committee to the President and Congress of the U.S.A.’ by Earl Browder and William Z. Foster from The Communist. Vol. 18 No. 19. October, 1939.

FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT, President of the United States, MEMBERS OF CONGRESS of the United States,

Dear Mr. President and Congressmen:

In this hour of world crisis, when the most horrible catastrophe is descending upon tens of millions of men, women and children in other lands, and is threatening our own country, American thought turns to the question of national unity, to the unity of the great majority of the American people, in protection of the national interests, in furthering the cause of peace, and in finding guarantees for American social and national security.

We address this letter to you, on behalf of the Communist Party of the U.S.A., which has spoken unanimously at a National Conference of six hundred and fifty of its representatives from all states, held in Chicago, September 1, 2 and g, 1939. We place before those who are responsible for the welfare of our people and nation the firm solidarity of our Party with the hopes, aspirations and desires of the great majority of the American people, and the ardent wish of our Party and all its members to work harmoniously with this majority and its elected representatives for the common interest and common welfare.

This is all the more necessary since the Communist Party of the U.S.A., although a relatively small minority party, is the most stable and rapidly- growing of such minorities, and exerts an influence upon public thought far beyond the confines of its membership. It is also made especially necessary by the persistent and highly-organized campaign of misrepresentation which tries to picture our Party as un-American, as an agency of some foreign principal directed against the interests and unity of the American people—misrepresentation which pictures our loyalty to the principles of socialism as disloyalty to our own country and people. These slanders are refuted by our political views and our work, and by our position in the present crisis.

We are Americans who love our country and would serve it by our best thought and most energetic action. As we understand the American tradition and Constitution, all persons, parties and groups have the  responsibility and duty to make clear, beyond doubt, their firm and unconditional defense of American social and national security; with this established, we believe that all, including the Communists, have the full right to participate in the democratic public life of our nation and to participate in its common tasks, without discrimination on account of creed or political affiliation.

We wish to place on record our firm accord with the stand of the President of our country against American involvement in the war, or in the rivalries and antagonisms which have led much of Europe into chaos. We support the President’s expressed determination to exert our country’s influence against extension of the warfare, especially as it involves the Americas, and to bring it to the speediest possible end in a way to abolish forever the practice of violent settlement of disputes between nations.

At this moment the hope for firm national unity lies in rallying all Americans in support of this policy, and in support of the President who has best expressed the hearts and minds of the people.

We add our voices to the popular condemnation of all who are attempting to find personal profit or narrow partisan advantage in the conditions of world crisis which press upon our people; we pledge our Party to co-operation with those who subordinate their personal, partisan, or class interests in order to serve the interests of the nation—which can only be the interest of that vast majority of the people who labor, in whatever field, for the common good.

We call attention to the fact that our country, most powerful in the world, occupies a position toward the world menace of war, similar in most important respects to that occupied by the second most powerful nation, the Soviet Union. Both are neutral toward the rival imperialist ambitions and interests, both are deeply sympathetic to the peoples whose national independence is in jeopardy, both ardently desire and strive for an ordered and peaceful world, both wish to make the world safe for human culture, science, work and happiness. This common attitude of the two greatest world powers reflects profound common national interests which must, sooner or later, and preferably sooner, result in common policy and action, together with all like-minded peoples and governments, to banish the forces of destruction from the earth, to establish orderly international relations, to secure world peace.

Very truly yours, For the National Committee, Communist Party of the U.S.A. Wm. Z. Foster, Chairman Earl Browder, General Secretary.

Foster and Browder January, 1940’s Lenin Memorial Meeting.

There are a number of journals with this name in the history of the movement. This Communist was the main theoretical journal of the Communist Party from 1927 until 1944. Its origins lie with the folding of The Liberator, Soviet Russia Pictorial, and Labor Herald together into Workers Monthly as the new unified Communist Party’s official cultural and discussion magazine in November, 1924. Workers Monthly became The Communist in March ,1927 and was also published monthly. The Communist contains the most thorough archive of the Communist Party’s positions and thinking during its run. The New Masses became the main cultural vehicle for the CP and the Communist, though it began with with more vibrancy and discussion, became increasingly an organ of Comintern and CP program. Over its run the tagline went from “A Theoretical Magazine for the Discussion of Revolutionary Problems” to “A Magazine of the Theory and Practice of Marxism-Leninism” to “A Marxist Magazine Devoted to Advancement of Democratic Thought and Action.” The aesthetic of the journal also changed dramatically over its years. Editors included Earl Browder, Alex Bittelman, Max Bedacht, and Bertram D. Wolfe.

PDF of full issue: https://www.marxists.org/history/usa/pubs/communist/v18n10-oct-1939-The-Communist-OCR.pdf

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