Leftists Form Alliance Minus 'Monarchist' Anpilov

They call themselves the "irreconcilable opposition," extreme leftists with no "illusions" that the country can be changed by parliamentarian means. Up until last weekend, they were a handful of independent, splinter groups. But at their second joint congress, held over the weekend, they bonded together into the Movement of Communist and Socialist Forces of Russia.


The new alliance will include the Russian Communist Workers Party, the Russian Party of Communists, the Russian Communist Party ? Communist Party of the Soviet Union, the Union of Officers and In Defense of Children. It will be supported by other leftist movements, including Working Russia, once the bastion of now-ousted Viktor Anpilov, who has been left out of the alliance.


"Victor Anpilov is not welcome in this movement," said Anatoly Kryuchkov of the Russian Party of Communists. "If he wants to join, he will not be accepted. Our approach is collective, democratic centralism; his is dictatorial, presidential, monarchist. If he shows that approach today, he'll fight against the soviets tomorrow."


On President Boris Yeltsin, the group's stance is predictable and simple. "A regime that doesn't pay you what you've earned is a criminal regime," said Kryuchkov.


The alliance's position on Gennady Zyuganov and his Communist Party of the Russian Federation is more complex, but no less scornful. "The false opposition, under the leadership of [Zyuganov], has used parliamentary methods to 'correct' the course of reforms. This has brought the working people nothing," reads a declaration of the alliance.


The group plans to go to factories and mines to organize workers into soviets, which will, according to the declaration, lead to a general strike and a bloodless revolution. Then the presidency will be abolished, along with private property. The Soviet Union will be reconstituted and Russia will gain "freedom from the imperial nations."


Alexei Prigarin of the Russian Communist Party ? Communist Party of the Soviet Union says the alliance believes in democracy and the existence of varied parties, with the exception of fascists. Their platform calls for the eradication of fascism, chauvinism and nationalism.


Another goal is to set the wages of government functionaries no higher than those of "working people." "Look at all the hunger," said Working Russia's Vladimir Gusev. "The miners go hungry. The teachers go hungry. Let [Prime Minister Viktor] Chernomyrdin go hungry!"