Transport Department of the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist Party (of Bolsheviks) to Comrade Evgen'ev

On the Analytical Study of the Confidential Letter of the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist Party (of Bolsheviks) about Lessons Learned from the Events Surrounding the Heinous Murder of Comrade Kirov (1)

Study of the letter of the Central Committee began with an instructional conference with the chiefs of political sections supervising workers in the administration of the Political Section for Land Transport and the party organizers of the Moscow [transportation] hub. The conference was held January 20 by the supervisor of the Political Section for Land Transport.

On January 22 study of the letter began at hub conferences of party organizers and the active party membership of branch political sections; these meetings were held by the chief of the Political Section for Land Transport and the deputy and members of the Party Collegium for Land Transport.

On January 25 study of the letter began in party committees with active party members and subsequently at closed party meetings.

For study of the letter at the closed party meetings, the Political Section for Land Transport appointed party workers as leaders in 46 party organizations.

The party organizations for transport received a great deal of help from territorial party organizations, especially in Moscow and in Tula and Gorkii as well; those organizations helped in the guidance of workers in the political sections and sent their workers to meetings of railway party organizations for study of the Central Committee letter.

In a vast majority of the party transport organizations, study of the Central Committee letter proceeded at the highest ideological-political level, showing the political strength and uncompromising nature of party organizations in the struggle for the overall party line, as well as their solidarity around the Stalin Central Committee and the party leader, Comrade Stalin.

The letter was heard with particular attention and exceptional interest at all the meetings.

The reading of the letter was accompanied by commentary and an emphasis on its exceptional clarity, precision and Stalinist style.

In the majority of organizations, the closed meetings were well prepared and distinguished by very large attendance and exceptional political activity.

At the Voitovich Plant, for example, of 280 persons who could have attended 272 were present and 93 spoke. At the Krasnyi Put' Plant, 60 of 73 persons attended and 18 spoke. … In the 22nd Railway Region (Ranenburg), 19 of 24 communists attended and 11 spoke. In the First Section, 98 to 100 percent took part in the party meetings.

Among communists who were not present at the closed party meetings because of illness or assignment, supplementary meetings were held to study the letter.

Party organizers visited intermediate outposts for study of the letter with individual communists.

Individual party organizations conducted poor preparations and therefore study of the letter proceeded at a low political level. For example, at Steam Engine Station Moskva-1, study of the Central Committee letter at a meeting of the party committee and active membership missed the principal political meaning of the letter and debate was limited to minor faults in composition. The same thing occurred at the party meeting of the 18th Railway Region. At the Kashir Repair Shop, the double-dealing of former Trotskyites was not exposed to its full depth. Therefore, a second study of the letter was conducted in these organizations.

At this meeting it was also indicated that the work being conducted was only the beginning of accomplishing the basic tasks stemming from the Central Committee letter.

This especially concerns party organizations and individual communists at small field stations where study of the Central Committee letter was less vigorous, where existing scandals have still [not] been exposed and where revolutionary vigilance, preparedness for struggle and the ideological political work of communists is not yet at the necessary level.

The meeting discussed in particular detail and provided concrete instruction on the question of improving propaganda work.

At present, study of the Central Committee letter has begun in komsomol (2) organizations, in relation to which the political section discloses certain facts concerning party organizers not providing required leadership for this study and sometimes not even attending komsomol meetings for study of the letter. The political sections of [labor] branches and party organizers were notified of the impermissability of such happenings, and a proposal was made to the political section chiefs that they personally accompany the active members of komsomol organizations in study of the Central Committee letter and single out proven communists and responsible workers for study of the letter in all komsomol organizations to ensure an ideologically high political level for komsomol meetings in the study of the Central Committee letter.

Chief of the Political Section for Land Transportation

[signature indistinct] (Kostanian)

Translator's notes:

  1. Kirov, a prominent party leader, was murdered December 1, 1934; this event marked the beginning of the Great Terror.
  2. "komsomol" [kommunisticheskii soiuz molodezhi] is the acronym for the Communist Youth League.

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