A Lame Alibi

by Fan Hsiu-ping

[This article is reprinted from Peking Review, Vol. 11, #44, Nov. 1, 1968, pp. 22-23.]

      To cover up the aggressive nature of Soviet revisionist social-imperialism, TASS on August 30 came up with a sorry alibi. For advertising purposes, it made a long list of Soviet revisionist “aid” to Czechoslovakia the way one totes up one’s valuables. Posing as a “benefactor,” it glibly talked about having “provided” Czechoslovakia with supplies and “satisfied” its needs. The supplies included everything, from Donbas coal to Ukraine flour. What great, selfless and all-round “aid”! As if this could write off at one stroke the enormous crime of using planes, artillery and tanks for the armed occupation of Czechoslovakia and suppression of its people.

      Our great leader Chairman Mao has taught us: “The governments of the imperialist countries, though they engaged in counter-revolutionary activities every day, had never told the truth in their statements or official documents but had filled or at least flavoured them with professions of humanity, justice and virtue.” This is just how the Soviet revisionist renegade clique has acted.

      The mass of figures set down by TASS cannot conceal the gangsters’ diabolical face. It was to devour a little girl that the wolf in a Russian fairy-tale disguised itself as her “grandmother” wearing a beautiful night cap. It is to engage in ruthless plunder that the Soviet revisionist renegade clique dresses itself up as a “philanthropist” under the attractive signboard of “aid.”

      “According to official data,” TASS said, “Soviet-Czechoslovak trade in 1967 reached 1,754.7 million rubles. Czechoslovakia purchased 870.7 million rubles worth of commodities and the Soviet Union 884 million rubles worth of commodities.” This sounds as if trade was indeed based on “equality, mutual benefit” and “balance.” But the TASS figures can deceive nobody. Trade within the “Council for Mutual Economic Aid” is unequal and a means by which Soviet revisionist social-imperialism exploits and plunders other members of the council. A machine from “allies” in the council, including Czechoslovakia, which can be exchanged for 520 tons of iron ore in other markets, is exchanged for only 140 tons in the Soviet Union. This means that the export of 140 tons of iron ore enables the Soviet revisionists to squeeze out of Czechoslovakia commodities worth 380 tons of iron ore. If Soviet iron ore exports to Czechoslovakia in 1966-70 alone are calculated at 50 million tons, as TASS said, the commodities thus plundered there by the Soviet revisionists will be equivalent to 135 million tons of iron ore in value. How can such cruel plunder be covered up by the TASS figure of more than “800 million” rubles?

      TASS shamelessly boasted that “what the Soviet Union supplied almost fully satisfied Czechoslovakia’s oil needs.” This is nonsense too! The Czechoslovak revisionists are economically dependent on the Soviet revisionists. It is true that Czechoslovakia depends on the Soviet Union for 80 per cent of its iron ore and almost 100 per cent of its oil. But TASS deliberately avoided mentioning how expensive the oil sent via the “Friendship” pipeline is. For example, rolling stock from member nations of the “Council for Mutual Economic Aid,” including Czechoslovakia, can get the equivalent of only 1,300 tons of oil in the Soviet Union, instead of 3,400 tons in other markets. Furthermore, TASS made no mention of the fact that all uranium from Tachov in Czechoslovakia “satisfies” the Soviet revisionists’ needs and cannot be sold to “nations other than the Soviet Union.”

      TASS said: “In the past ten years, the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic’s annual grain imports from the Soviet Union averaged two-thirds of the former’s state grain requisition.” This is as good as telling the Dubcek clique to its face: What! After eating my grain, you now want “freedom” and to break away from my control! Both U.S. imperialist and Soviet revisionist wheat are not wholesome at all. They are poisonous bait which the two use to push their policy of neocolonialism. It is precisely because the Czechoslovak revisionists each year use up over a million tons of the Soviet revisionists’ wheat — one out of every three loaves of bread comes from this wheat — that they must be enslaved to social-imperialism. Without attaining economic independence, there can, of course, be no talk of political independence!

      TASS certainly lives up to being the mouthpiece of Soviet revisionism. It didn’t even forget that the Soviet revisionists had built a wide-gauge railway inside Czechoslovak territory. It smugly boasted that “to cut down the cost of transporting these goods a wide-gauge railway has been built from the Soviet-Czechoslovak border to Kosice.” What utter shamelessness! Can it be simply “to cut down the cost of transporting these goods” that the Soviet revisionists built their railway right into the heartland of Czechoslovakia? Can it be that the cost of transport is such that it was worth this big engineering effort? The unobstructed wide-gauge railway greatly helped the occupation of Czechoslovakia in eight hours by Soviet revisionist troops. To put it bluntly, the real reason for building this railway was, first, for economic plunder, and, second, for moving troops. Aren’t these plain facts?

      TASS can stow all its glib talk designed to deceive people!

      Soviet social-imperialism treats Czechoslovakia as its sphere of influence. It was no surprise that Soviet revisionism got Czechoslovak revisionism to reach agreement at bayonet point. The heavy chains of the “Council for Mutual Economic Aid” — “international division of labour,” “economic integration,” etc. — had been clapped on the Czechoslovak revisionists long ago. They can only meekly pull the cart or else the merciless big stick of the Soviet revisionists will descend on them out of the blue. However, TASS has forgotten that Czechoslovakia belongs to the Czechoslovak people! Though the Dubcek renegade clique commits treason and capitulates, the people of Czechoslovakia will not allow their motherland to suffer Soviet revisionism’s control and plunder over a long period. The heroic people of Czechoslovakia are becoming more awakened daily. They are bound to rise up in rebellion, overthrow the rule of the Czechoslovak revisionists and break away from Soviet revisionism’s enslavement!

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