[Marxism] Stalin's justification of torture

David Thorstad binesi at gvtel.com
Sun Dec 21 10:04:08 MST 2008

        Today is Stalin's birthday. Here's his view of "socialist"
        torture methods, similar to those
        of the U.S. imperialists.

        Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili, aka Joseph Stalin, born
        December 21,
        1879, died March 5, 1953.

        On Applying Physical Pressure to Prisoners

        by Joseph Stalin

        To the Secretaries of oblast and regional party committees,
        To the CCs of national Communist parties,
        To the people's commissars of internal affairs,
        and to the heads of NKVD directorates

        It has become known to the VKP CC that the secretaries of oblast and
        regional party committees, in checking up on employees of NKVD
        directorates, have laid blame on them for the use of physical
        against those who have been arrested, treating it as something
        The VKP CC affirms that the use of physical pressure in the work
        of the
        NKVD has been permitted since 1937 in accordance with a
        resolution of the
        VKP CC. This directive indicated that physical pressure was to
        be used in
        exceptional cases and only against blatant enemies of the people
        who, when
        interrogated by humane methods, defiantly refuse to turn over
        the names of
        co-conspirators, and who refuse for months on end to provide any
        and who try to thwart the unmasking of co-conspirators who are
        still at
        large, and who thereby continue even from prison to wage a struggle
        against the Soviet regime. Experience has shown that such an
        has produced good results and has greatly expedited the unmasking of
        enemies of the people. True, subsequently in practice the method of
        physical pressure was abused by Zakovsky, Litvin, Uspensky, and
        scoundrels, converting it from an exception into a rule and
        beginning to
        apply it against honest people who had been arrested
        accidentally. For
        these abuses, they [the scoundrels] have been given due
        punishment. But
        this in no way detracts from the value of the method itself when
        it is
        properly used. It is known that all bourgeois secret services
        use physical
        pressure against representatives of the socialist proletariat
        and rely on
        especially savage methods of it. We might therefore ask why a
        secret service should be any more more humane in relation to
        agents of the bourgeoisie and sworn enemies of the working class and
        collectivized farmers. The VKP CC believes that the use of physical
        pressure must absolutely be continued from here on in
        exceptional cases
        and against blatant and invidious enemies of the people, and
        that this is
        a perfectly appropriate and desirable method. The VKP CC demands
        that the
        secretaries of oblast and regional party committees and the CCs of
        national party committees bear in mind this explanation when
        they check up
        on the employees of NKVD directorates.

        Secretary of the VKP CC
        J. Stalin
        January 10, 1939

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