MARXIST INTERNET ARCHIVE



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What should be done with the kulaks?

How should the kulak be treated? In June 1929, Karpinsky,  a senior member of the Party, wrote that the kulaks should be allowed to join kolkhozy when collectivization included the majority of families, if they put all their means of production into the indivisible fund. This position was upheld by Kaminsky,  the president of the All-Union Kolkhoz Council. The same point of view was held by the leadership. But the majority of delegates, local Party leaders, were `categorically opposed' to the admission of kulaks into kolkhozy. A delegate stated:

`(I)f he gets into the kolkhoz somehow or other he will turn an association for the joint working of the land into an association for working over Soviet power.'

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Ibid. , pp. 138--139.

In July 1929, the Secretary for the Central Volga Region, Khataevich,  declared that

`(I)ndividual kulak elements may be admitted to collective associations if they completely renounce their personal ownership of means of production, if the kolkhozy have a solid poor-peasant and middle-peasant nucleus and if correct leadership is assured.'

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Ibid. , p. 140.

However, there were already several cases that were going in the opposite direction. In Kazakhstan, in August 1928, 700 bai, semi-feudal lords, and their families, were exiled. Each family owned at least one hundred cattle, which were distributed to the already-constituted kolkhozy and to peasants who were being encouraged to join kolkhozy. In February 1929, a Siberian regional Party conference decided not to allow kulaks. In June, the North Caucasus made the same decision.

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Ibid. , pp. 140--141.

The September 17 issue of Pravda presented a major report on the kolkhoz Red Land Improver in Lower Volga. Established in 1924, this model kolkhoz received 300,000 rubles, credit from the State. But in 1929, its socialized property amounted to only 1,800 rubles. The funds had been used for personal gain. The president of the kolkhoz was a Socialist Revolutionary; the leadership included former traders, the son of a priest and four other former Socialist Revolutionaries.

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Ibid. , p. 144.

Molotov  summarized the affair by; `kulak-SR elements will often hide behind the kolkhoz smokescreen'; a `merciless struggle' was necessary against the kulak, as was the improvement of the organization of the poor peasants and of the alliance between the poor and middle peasants.

.

Ibid. , p. 145.

In November 1929, Azizyan,  a journalist specializing in agriculture, analyzed the motivations kulaks had for entering kolkhozy: they wanted to avoid being taxed and having to make obligatory shipments of wheat; to keep the best land; to keep their tools and machines; and to ensure the education of their children.

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Ibid. , p. 183.

At the same time, another journalist reported that `the weak half of the human race' sympathized with the kulaks while collective farmers were quite uncompromising, saying `send them out of the village into the steppe' and `put them in quarantine for fifty years'.

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Ibid. , p. 184.

The Central Committee resolution of January 5, 1930 drew conclusions from these debates and affirmed that it was now capable of `passing in its practical work from a policy of limiting the exploitative tendencies of the kulaks to a policy of liquidating the kulaks as a class .... the inadmissibility of allowing kulaks to join kolkhozes (was presupposed).

.

McNeal,  op. cit. , pp. 41--42.



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Next: Struggle to the Up: `Dekulakization' Previous: Kulak rumors and



Fri Aug 25 09:03:42 PDT 1995