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英文解釈の思考プロセス 第186回


今回の題材は、2017年7月3日付の The New York Times 紙に掲載された、Harvey Klehr 氏によるエッセイ、American Reds, Soviet Stooges ”ソ連の手先だったアメリカの共産党員” です。ロシア革命から100周年となる本年、そのロシア革命の歴史的意義を考察する The New York Times 紙に連載中の Red Century の一部です。全文の和訳はオリジナルの次にあります。

The Opinion Pages

American Reds, Soviet Stooges


Harvey Klehr




Earl Browder, who led the Communist Party of the United States of America from 1934 to1945. Credit Bettmann Archive/Getty Images

From its founding in 1919 in the wake of the Russian Revolution until the demise of the Soviet Union in 1991, the Communist Party of the United States of America was an instrument of Soviet foreign policy. The Communist International, or Comintern, which was set up under Lenin in 1919 and then disbanded by Stalin in 1943 as a gesture of unity to his World War II allies, regularly sent delegates to oversee the C.P.U.S.A. and transmitted orders from Moscow dictating who should lead the American party and what policies it should pursue.

The dissolution of the Comintern did not end Soviet control over the C.P.U.S.A. Supervision was simply transferred to the newly formed international department of the Soviet Union’s own Communist party.

At certain times, this Soviet domination was blatant. In both 1929 and 1945, Moscow demanded, and got, a change of party leadership. Jay Lovestone had the support of 90 percent of the party members in 1929, but his support for the Bolshevik Nikolai Bukharin led Stalin to remove Lovestone as the American party’s general secretary. When, at a hearing chaired by Stalin himself, Lovestone and several of his lieutenants refused to back down, Stalin angrily denounced them and turned the C.P.U.S.A. over to its factional opponents. When the Lovestoneites set up a dissident movement, fewer than 200 American Communists joined.

Later, Lovestone’s Stalin-approved successor, Earl Browder, concluded that the American-Soviet alliance of World War II would continue after the defeat of Nazi Germany. For this reason, in 1944, he boldly engineered the transformation of the C.P.U.S.A. into a pressure group designed to work within the Democratic Party. When Browder refused to accept Soviet criticism of his policies the following year, he, too, was unceremoniously removed — expelled from the party for his heresy.

With the C.P.U.S.A. reconstituted, virtually every Communist who had hailed Browder for years as the symbol of an Americanized Communism then shunned him. He was even forced to find a new dentist and a different insurance agent.

Public displays of Soviet control over C.P.U.S.A. policies were hard to miss. After years of attacking Franklin D. Roosevelt for “fascist” policies and denouncing the New Deal as an elaborate plot to deceive the working class, the C.P.U.S.A. was stunned in 1935 when the Comintern, alarmed by the growing menace of Nazi Germany, abruptly changed course and called for a popular front against fascism. In place of the Comintern’s previous policy of treating any alliance with socialists and liberals as anathema, Moscow’s U-turn involved demanding that its constituent parties reach out to all and sundry to stop fascism.

Running for president in 1936, Browder offered indirect support to Roosevelt. Two years later, Communists — who had formerly regarded Roosevelt as a harbinger of American fascism — hailed the president for his calls for a democratic alliance against Hitler.

The hosannas for antifascism ended suddenly in 1939 with the Nazi-Soviet Pact. The same Communists who had lauded Roosevelt now denounced him again, this time as a warmonger for such policies as Lend-Lease aid to Britain. The somersaults demanded by Moscow continued when Germany attacked the Soviet Union in 1941: The C.P.U.S.A.’s calls for peace were quickly replaced by demands that the United States do everything possible to aid the Allies.

Such major shifts in party line were only the most dramatic and public signs of fealty to the Kremlin. In 1938, at the height of the popular front policy, the C.P.U.S.A.’s slogan “Communism Is 20th-Century Americanism” demonstrated its effort to prove its patriotism. But that same year, a C.P.U.S.A. representative in Moscow sent a secret letter warning that Comintern leaders thought the slogan ideologically incorrect and subversive. Without any discussion or debate, the party stopped using it.

While most of the hundreds of thousands of Americans who joined the C.P.U.S.A. over the years did so because they supported the policies or ideals the party promoted, a great majority quickly abandoned it after a policy reversal occasioned by a shift in Soviet foreign policy. Anyone who remained a Communist for more than a few years, though, had to be aware that the one constant was support for whatever policy the Soviet Union followed. Open criticism of the U.S.S.R. was grounds for expulsion. For all members of the C.P.U.S.A., the Soviet Union was the homeland of socialism, the first workers’ state, which had to be defended against the machinations of capitalism.

The C.P.U.S.A. dutifully spread the lies put out by Moscow. The party thus insisted that the show trials during Stalin’s purges had uncovered a vast capitalist plot against the Soviet leader. Party members dutifully repeated Soviet fabrications that Trotsky had been in the pay of the Nazis. Worst of all, many Communists applauded the execution of tens of thousands of Soviet comrades, denouncing those who were executed as bourgeois spies and provocateurs. When Finnish-Americans who had returned to Soviet Karelia in the late 1920s and early ’30s to build socialism were purged, their American relatives were warned by party authorities to remain silent, and most did so.

Neither did the Communist movement limit its disinformation to Russian matters. In the 1960s, the K.G.B. secretly subsidized a left-wing publishing house in New York run by a former party member, Carl Marzani, that published the first book claiming that John F. Kennedy’s assassination had been arranged by a cabal of American right-wing businessmen and C.I.A. operatives.

It was not until 1956, when Khrushchev told Soviet Communists that Stalin had been a mass murderer, that American Communists were willing to believe what had been widely known for years. The persecutions of McCarthyism and the Cold War seriously depleted the ranks of the C.P.U.S.A., but it took the word of a Soviet Communist leader to destroy the faith in Communism that had sustained many Americans. By 1959, the C.P.U.S.A., which had once numbered nearly 100,000 members, was reduced to fewer than 3,000.

The C.P.U.S.A.’s vulnerability had a great deal to do with its dependence on Moscow. For much of its existence, the party could not have functioned without Moscow gold. One of its first leaders, the journalist John Reed, was given more than a million rubles’ worth of czarist jewels and diamonds to smuggle into America to support the fledgling American movement. In the 1920s, Armand Hammer, the future head of Occidental Petroleum, used money derived from Soviet concessions to underwrite The Daily Worker and fund communist operations in Europe. Without Soviet money, the C.P.U.S.A. would not have been able to hire the hundreds of full-time organizers and support an array of front groups and publications that enabled it to outspend and out-organize its left-wing rivals.

Beginning in the late ’50s and continuing into the late ’80s, the K.G.B. delivered millions of dollars to the C.P.U.S.A. through two brothers, Jack and Morris Childs, both of whom were actually working for the F.B.I. as double agents. These subsidies, carefully monitored by the F.B.I., kept the C.P.U.S.A. alive as a wholly owned subsidiary of the Soviet Union. In return, the longtime party leader, Gus Hall, faithfully supported every Soviet foreign policy initiative, ranging from the U.S.S.R.’s conduct during the Cuban missile crisis to the crushing of the Prague Spring in 1968 and the party’s subsequent denunciations of Eurocommunism.

Several hundred American Communists carried their devotion to the Soviet Union even further, working, mostly without recompense, for Soviet intelligence agencies. Virtually all of the approximately 500 Americans who served as Soviet spies between the ’30s and early ’50s, including senior government officials like Alger Hiss, Harry Dexter White and Laurence Duggan, were either Communists or Communist sympathizers. The C.P.U.S.A. had a clandestine apparatus that cooperated with the K.G.B. and the Soviet intelligence directorate, vetting potential recruits and occasionally suggesting useful sources. Three successive party leaders — Lovestone, Browder and Eugene Dennis — knew and approved of this relationship.

That the leaders of an American political party always under attack for its Soviet connections would take the incredibly risky step of actually working with Soviet intelligence speaks volumes about the ultimate loyalties of the American Communist Party. Rank and file members might have had no idea of such behavior, but anyone who remained in the C.P.U.S.A. for more than a short spell had to be aware that criticism of the Soviet Union was not tolerated. Those who stayed in the C.P.U.S.A. through one of its many changes of line knew that fealty to the homeland of socialism took precedence over any other allegiance. The dream of those who believed in an Americanized Communism was killed by this lie.

Harvey Klehr, an emeritus professor of politics and history at Emory University, is the author of numerous books about American Communism and Soviet espionage.

This is an essay in the series Red Century, about the history and legacy of Communism 100 years after the Russian Revolution.

< 全文和約例 >

ロシア革命に続く1919年の創立時から1991年のソヴィエト社会主義共和国連邦の崩壊に至るまで、アメリカ共産党(The Communist Party of the United States of America (C.P.U.S.A.))は、ソ連外交政策の一つの駒に過ぎませんでした。レーニンによって1919年に創設され、1943年にスターリンが第二次世界大戦中同盟国となった自由主義国家に対する団結を装う為に解散させられた共産主義インターナショナル、あるいはコミンテルンは、誰が党首となるか、そしてどの様な政策を実施すべきかに関するモスクワの指示を伝達する為に、定期的に代表団をC.P.U.S.A. に派遣しました。



その後、ラブストーンの後任であるスターリンの息のかかったアール・ブロウダーは、第2次世界大戦中に形成されたアメリカ―ソヴィエトの同盟関係は、ナチス・ドイツの敗北後も継続することになると予測しました。この理由で、1944年に、彼はアメリカ共産党を民主党政権の下で圧力団体として機能させるべく大胆な改革を実行しました。翌年、ブロウダーが、彼の政策に対するソ連の批判を無視すると、彼も何らの公式発表なくして書記長を解任されました ― 異端的傾向を理由に党から追放されたのです。


アメリカ共産党に対するソヴィエトの支配が公然たるものであることは、容易に確認出来ました。フランクリン・D・ローズヴェルト大統領を ”ファシスト的” であると攻撃し、彼のニューディール政策を、労働者を巧妙に欺く為の陰謀であると非難していたものの、1935年にコミンテルンが、増大するナチス・ドイツの脅威に備える為に突如として基本方針を変更し、ファシズムに対する共産主義、自由主義の枠組みを超えた共同戦線の結成を呼び掛けた際、アメリカ共産党は茫然自失となりました。社会主義者や自由主義者との同盟関係は何であれ破門されるという従来のコミンテルンの方針に代わって、モスクワの変節は、今後の同盟関係はファシズムの伸長を阻止する為に全ての社会主義、自由主義政党に拡張されるべきことを要求していました。



幾度にも及ぶ基本方針の変更は、クレムリンに対する最も劇的で明白な忠誠心を表現したに過ぎませんでした。対ファシズムの人民戦線政策が承認されていた1938年に、アメリカ共産党のスローガンであった ”20世紀の共産主義はアメリカ主義である” は、共産党も愛国主義であることを証明しょうとする意気込みを示していました。しかし同年に、在モスクワの党員が、コミンテルンの首脳たちはそのスローガンがイデオロギー的に不適切であり組織を蝕むとみなしていると警告する手紙を密かに送ると、何らの議論もなくして、党はその使用を止めました。









To be continued.