The forgotten collaboration between the USSR, nazi Germany and fascist Italy

20 historical facts that deny the idea of communism as the great enemy of fascism

If we trust communist propaganda, that totalitarian movement has historically been “antifascism” in its truest expression..

The forgotten resistance: they fought against the nazis and then against the communists
The Nazi-Soviet joint parade of 1939 in Poland that some deny, in video

This idea is based, to a large extent, on the confrontation between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union between June 1941 and May 1945. However, there are a number of historical facts that deny this idea repeated so many times by the communists. Let’s review a few:

  1. The establishment of diplomatic relations between fascist Italy and the USSR in February 1924, which made Italy one of the first countries in Western Europe to recognize the Soviet dictatorship (Spain did not establish diplomatic relations with the USSR until October 1933, when the Second Republic had already been in existence for more than two years).
  2. The mutual help that Nazis and Communists gave each other to erode the Weimar Republic between 1929 and 1930. Of 241 questions voted in the Reichstag and the Prussian state parliament in those years, nazis and communists voted together 70% of the time.
  3. The mass affiliation of communist militants to the National Socialist German Workers’ Party, even before their rise to power in January 1933. According to the Social Democrat Albert Grzesinski, head of the Berlin Police between 1930 and 1932, 30% of the members of the SA – the Nazi militias – in Berlin were ex-communists as early as 1932.
  4. The attempt of the Communist Party of Germany (KPD) to recruit Nazi militants through a nationalist program, called Scheringer-Kurs. At a KPD rally, a member of the SA, wearing the uniform and armband of that Nazi Party militia, was brought to the rostrum and declared his allegiance to communism during a KPD ceremony. The German communist weekly AIZ published the image in its number 7, in February 1933 (you can see it here).
  5. The signing of a pact of “friendship, neutrality and non-aggression” between fascist Italy and the USSR on September 2, 1933, a pact that served to strengthen relations between both countries, especially in the economic sphere but also in the military. That same month a Soviet military delegation visited Italy. The then Soviet ambassador to Italy, Vladimir Petrovich Potemkin, expressed his “gratitude for the exceptional attention devoted to the Soviet mission by the Italian command and government.”
  6. Fascist Italy’s contribution to the construction of six Kirov-class cruisers for the Soviet Navy, which were laid down between 1935 and 1938. Four of them (the Kirov, the Voroshilov, the Maxim Gorky, and the Molotov) were completed. before Italy and the USSR broke diplomatic relations after the German invasion of the Soviet Union.
  7. The construction by fascist Italy of the destroyer “Tashkent” for the Soviet Navy, a ship that was laid down on January 11, 1937 at the Odero-Terni-Orlando shipyards in Livorno, launched on December 28, 1938 and delivered to the USSR on May 6, 1939, serving in the Black Sea Fleet. Three more destroyers were commissioned from Italy by the USSR, but were never completed.
  8. The signing of a Credit Agreement between Nazi Germany and the USSR on August 19, 1939, by which the USSR received a credit from Germany worth 200 million German marks.
  9. The signing of the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact of August 23, 1939 between Nazi Germany and the USSR, by which both dictatorships divided Poland, Finland and the Baltic republics.
  10. The joint invasion of Poland by Germany and the USSR in September 1939, in a coordinated manner and following what was agreed by both dictatorships on August 23 of that year.
  11. The joint parade held by Germans and Soviets in Brześć Litewski (Poland), today Brest-Litovsk (Belarus), to celebrate their joint invasion of that country.
  12. The holding of joint meetings between the German Gestapo and its Soviet counterpart, the NKVD, since October 1939, to share information and experience in order to liquidate the Polish resistance.
  13. The delivery of some 4,000 German Communists and Jews by the Soviet NKVD to the German Gestapo between 1939 and 1941. Those 4,000 people had taken refuge in the USSR fleeing from the nazis.
  14. The boycott of the Communist Party of France (PCF) to the French war effort against Nazi Germany in 1939 and 1940, following orders from Moscow, in development of the German-Soviet pact of August 1939 by which both countries acted de facto as allies.
  15. The practical non-existence of communist resistance against Germany between September 1939 and June 1941. As a consequence of the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact and following orders from Moscow, the communist parties did not resist the German occupation in several countries until the German invasion of the USSR. In Poland the first communist resistance group, the Czerwoną Milicję, was formed in mid-1941 (other resistance organizations, mostly made up of Catholics, began to act as early as the autumn of 1939). In France, the Communist Party did not create its resistance organization, Francs-tireurs et partisans (FTP), until the end of 1941. The same happened in Belgium, Greece, Albania, Czechoslovakia, Denmark (where the Nazi occupiers did not outlaw the Communist Party until June 22, 1941, the day Germany invaded the USSR), Luxembourg and Norway.
  16. The signing of a Trade Agreement between Nazi Germany and the USSR in February 1940, whereby Germany received 1.6 million tons of grain, 900,000 tons of oil, 500,000 tons of iron ore and other large quantities from the USSR of raw materials that allowed him to manufacture weapons and uniforms, feed his troops and fuel his tanks and planes.
  17. The justification by the Communist Party of Spain (PCE) for the Nazi-Soviet invasion of Poland, in an article published by Dolores Ibárruri on February 18, 1940 in which it demonized Poland and presented France and the United Kingdom as the nations guilty of World War II.
  18. The secret talks between the Communist Party of France (PCF) and the Nazis in June 1940 for the latter to allow the latter to publish a communist newspaper in occupied France. One of the communist documents addressed to the Germans stated: “Our defense of the pact has benefited you. For the USSR we have worked well, indirectly, for you.”
  19. The talks between Germany and the USSR for the Soviets to join the Axis Pact in October and November 1940. The alliance of both dictatorships in that period after the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact of the previous year came to encourage Stalin to try to join the that other pact signed by Germany with fascist Italy and Japan. This attempt was fueled by the belief that the United Kingdom would soon be defeated by Germany. The union of the USSR to the Axis was not signed due to the ambitious demands of Stalin, who aspired to control Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, Iraq and Iran.
  20. The concealment of the Jewish Holocaust by the USSR after World War II, which insisted on omitting the Jewish condition of a large part of the victims of nazism, in a clear case of anti-Semitism.

How many communists and how many people in general know most of these facts? And above all, how many communists have concealed these facts for decades so that they would not spoil their narrative of communism as the great enemy of fascism and nazism?

Main photo: German and Soviet soldiers fraternizing in Brest, where their forces met during the joint invasion of Poland (colorized photo by Mirek Szponar).

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