In Defense of Historical Truth!
The IYSSE stands in the tradition of revolutionary socialism, from the origins of Marxism in the 1840s, through the Russian Revolution of 1917 and the implacable struggle, led by Leon Trotsky, against the bureaucratic degeneration of the Soviet Union under Stalin. In a new era of world war and revolution, the ruling class and its ideologists are engaged in a campaign of historical falsification aimed cutting workers and young people off from the history of the struggles for international socialism.
More than 20 years after the dissolution of the USSR, the world capitalist system is mired in crisis. The “End of History” promised by Francis Fukuyama has not been realized. What we are witnessing is the return of history—that of economic crisis, the relentless assault on democratic rights, and the eruption of imperialist wars. In this situation, the working class must study history in order to understand the present-day reality. The defense of the legacy of the Russian Revolution and its political leaders, most importantly Vladimir Lenin and Leon Trotsky, against historical falsification is an essential component of the political education of the working class and its preparation for the political demands of a new epoch of revolutionary struggle.
The principles of the SEP incorporate the essential experiences of the revolutionary upheavals of the twentieth century and the corresponding struggle waged by Marxists for the program of world socialist revolution. The socialist revolution, which signifies the forcible entrance of the masses into conscious political struggle, portends the greatest and most progressive transformation of the form of man’s social organization in world history – the ending of society based on classes and, therefore, of the exploitation of human beings by other human beings. A transformation so immense is the work of an entire historical epoch. The principles of the SEP are derived from and necessarily reference the experiences of this epoch, which opened with the eruption of World War I in 1914, followed shortly thereafter by the conquest of state power by the Russian working class in the 1917 October Revolution.
— Statement of Principles for the Socialist Equality Party US
The IYSSE at Humboldt University in Berlin, Germany has been at the forefront of the fight for historical truth in leading a campaign against a right-wing historian Jörg Baberowski, a professor at the university, who has worked to relativize the crimes of the Nazis, agitated against refugees and promoted dictatorship and war. This campaign to falsify history and in particular the crimes of Hitler is directly bound up with the resurgence of militarism and great power politics. In order to prepare new crimes of German imperialism, its historical crimes must be sanitized and glossed over.
The IYSSE fights tirelessly against the falsification of history, and for historical truth. We fight against every form of opportunism and nationalism, and for the international unification of the working class on a socialist basis.
A system whose survival depends upon lies is doomed. This struggle for historical truth should draw inspiration from the words of Trotsky: “… the truth will triumph! We will blaze the trail for it. It will conquer!”