Komsomol, Tenth Congress, Program of the Komsomol. April 21, 1936
Original Source: Pravda, 23 April 1936.
The All-Union Leninist Communist League of Youth is a mass non-partisan organization allied to the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks), and unites in its ranks broad masses of advanced and politically conscious young persons living in towns and villages. The Communist League of Youth pursues the aim of assisting the Communist Party (Bolsheviks) in the education of youth and children in the spirit of Communism. Being in sympathy with the program of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks), the Communist League of Youth assists the Bolshevist Party and the Soviet Government in the fulfillment of a great historical task–the building up of a communist Society.
The Communist League of Youth is auxiliary to the All-Union Communist Party and is its reserve.
The Communist League of Youth, guided by the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks), by all its work educates young workers, peasants, clerks and intellectuals and forms them into men and women devoted to the Soviet Government, well instructed, bold and determined, who are not afraid of hardships and difficulties, who hate the enemies of the working classes, and for whom “clarity of purpose, persistence in the attainment of aims and firmness of character which break through all barriers” (Stalin) are the main features of their character.
In order to educate the toiling youth of towns and villages and to organize them around the Soviet Government, the All-Union Lenin’s Own Communist League of Youth is to pursue the following aims:
I. Political Education of Youth
1. While following the directions of Lenin who said that the formation of true Communist mentality-the thorough knowledge of the scientific and revolutionary theory of Marxism–is the principal condition for the education of youth in the spirit of Communism, the Communist League of Youth thinks it necessary for each member of the League to obtain political education. With this aim in view the League organizes schools and circles and carries on other measures which will help the youth in mastering political principles, in studying the principal historical events in general and the history of the USSR and of the All-Union Communist Party in particular, organizes study by young persons of the principal theories propounded by Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin.
2. The Communist League of Youth is engaged in the work of political education of young workers, peasants, clerks, students and intellectuals; informs them by means of meetings, talks and lectures about current political events, measures passed by the Soviet Government and by the All-Union Communist Party, conditions of the life of workers and peasants in the past and in capitalist countries, the history of the Civil War in the USSR, and educates the youth demonstrating to them the examples of heroic struggle of workers and toiling peasants against capitalists and landowners. The Communist League of Youth publishes its own papers, periodicals, political and artistic literature, organizes clubs for young people and conducts propaganda work in workers’ and kolkhoz clubs, libraries and reading rooms.
3. The Communist League of Youth patiently explains to the young people the harm done by superstitions and religious prejudices and organizes special circles and lectures for antireligious propaganda.
4. The Communist League of Youth conducts educational work against past reactionary traditions of national inequality, against any demonstration of chauvinism and nationalism and
educates the young people, using the native languages of the peoples of the USSR and taking into consideration the peculiar conditions and circumstances of each of these peoples.
5. The Communist League of Youth organizes various courses and schools for training and re-training propagandists and organizers of different branches of the League activities.
II. Education of Young People
1. The Communist League of Youth, in all its work, is guided by the words of Stalin: “to master knowledge, to forge new cadres of Bolsheviks- -specialists in all branches of knowledge–to study, study in the most persistent way. ” The League strives to raise the cultural and technical standard of the working classes to the level of fully qualified engineers.
2. With this aim in view the branches of the League:
a) assist the Government institutions in the strengthening and development of the Soviet schools and in the realization of universal compulsory education, at first for seven years and then for ten years;
b) organize, together with the Government and public bodies, training centers where young people may receive secondary education and technical training without interruption of their occupation in industry;
c) render every kind of assistance to the development of university education in the USSR (training of engineers, doctors, agronomists, pedagogues, etc.);
d) conduct an active struggle for the liquidation of illiteracy and insufficient literacy among young people;
e) organize various circles, schools and courses for raising the standard of technical and general knowledge and for the study of foreign languages;
f) conduct a struggle against “I-know-all-about-it” and a superficial attitude towards study, and strive that each member of the League may thoroughly know some specialty and be absolutely proficient in this specialty.
III. Work in Schools and among Children
1. The Communist League of Youth assists the State institutions and teachers in strengthening the school discipline and in organization of work in the schools.
2. Conducts a struggle against penetration into the schools of anti-popular tendencies and fights hooliganism and bad behavior.
3. Systematically informs school children about the most important daily events and organizes various circles, lectures and talks.
4. In order to satisfy different requirements of the school children the League organizes, on the principle of self-activity, circles of physical culture, musical, dramatic, photographic, radio, model-making, young inventors’ societies, etc.
5. Organizes rest and cultural entertainment of the school children (evenings of self-activity, visits to cinemas, theatres, museums and picture galleries, excursions, tourist travels, etc. ).
6. Participates actively in the training of teachers and recruits its best elements for pedagogical work.
7. Organizes Pioneers’ detachments and groups of “Oktiabrata (October-Kids)” in the schools.
8. Recruits the best members of the League for work in the Pioneers’ detachments and posts, or as leaders of various circles which are attached to the detachments and posts, and renders every kind of assistance in the work of these detachments and posts.
9. Organizes, together with trade unions and government institutions, Pioneers’ camps, children’s’ clubs, people’s palaces, playing fields, sanatoria, technical stations for children, etc.
10. Publishes artistic and popular technical literature for children and takes care of the production of equipment for Pioneers’ detachments and of good toys, etc.
IV. Physical Training of Youth
1. Organizes physical training for young people and strives to attain the best sporting records for the USSR
2. Actively participates in the work of State and public bodies engaged in the promotion of physical culture, organizing, various sporting societies and circles.
3. Actively participates in the construction of sporting establishments (sporting fields, stadiums, sport halls, open-air baths, aviation clubs, etc.) and assists in the production of sports equipment.
4. Recruits among its members instructors and organizers of sport and physical culture.
V. Participation in Socialist Reconstruction
1. While following the directions of the All-Union Communist Party regarding the Communist education of young people (each stage of instruction and education must be connected with the struggle for the creation of a Communist society), the Communist League of Youth strives to include all toiling young people in participation in the socialist reconstruction. The League branches are to explain to the young people the aims of socialist reconstruction, inform them about the programs of economic development in the USSR, take part in all political campaigns conducted by the All-Union Communist Party and by the Soviet Government, mobilize, as the need arises, their members for the most important tasks of socialist reconstruction, take part in the daily activities of Soviet institutions, assist the Soviet Government in its fight against bureaucratic perversions in the work of Soviet and economic institutions.
2. The Communist League of Youth assists the Bolshevik Party in the organization of socialist competition and takes an initiative in this competition. The League members must show an example by their conscientious work and lead other young people. The League strives to ingrain into the minds of young. people a Communist attitude towards labor, a conscientious attitude towards their duties to the Soviet Government; it demands of each male and female member that they should render labor services according to their abilities. The League informs young people of examples of labor heroism and labor feats achieved by the older comrades, male and female shock workers. The League is engaged in the fight for the increase of the productivity of labor and for the strengthening of labor discipline in factories, transport, kolkhozes, sovkhozes and offices.
3. The Communist League of Youth conducts work in educating all young people in the spirit of the safeguarding and preservation of socialist property, which is the foundation of the Soviet regime.
4. The Communist League of Youth assists the Soviet Government in strengthening the family and in the care of children and mothers. The League fights reactionary capitalist traditions as to women and educates the young people in the feeling of respect for women, who are equal participants in the socialist reconstruction.
VI. Defense of the Socialist Fatherland
1. The young generation of the Soviet Union must prepare themselves to defend their fatherland against any dangers and attacks on it by enemies. “Since 7 November (25 October) we are patriots. We are for the ‘defense of the fatherland, I but the patriotic war towards which we strive is the war for the socialist fatherland, for socialism which is our fatherland, for the Soviet Republic which is a detachment of the international army of Socialism” (Lenin). While persistently following this testament of the great Lenin, the Communist League of Youth educates the young generation in the spirit of Soviet patriotism and of boundless and unlimited love towards the USSR, our fatherland. Unqualified defense of the socialist fatherland, strengthening of its power, prosperity and glory is the most sacred and glorious duty of every member of the Communist League of Youth. The League educates young people in the spirit of readiness, upon the first call of the Soviet Government, to fight the enemies of the socialist fatherland.
2. The Communist League of Youth educates young people in bravery and courage, ingrains contempt for cowardice and fear of Soviet enemies and a spirit of strictest discipline; the League educates young people in the spirit of hatred for desertion, treachery and treason, which it considers to be the greatest and most abominable crime against the interests of the socialist fatherland. The members of the Communist League and all young people must show up and prosecute before the courts of the workers’ and peasants’ State all those who betray the interests of the fatherland.
3. In its work for the strengthening of the defense of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, the Communist League of Youth is guided by the policy pursued by the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks) and by the Soviet Government, as formulated by Stalin: “We stand for peace and defend the cause of peace. But we are not afraid of threats and are ready to reply with blow for blow to those who start war. ” Active assistance to the Soviet State in strengthening and developing the armed forces is the most important duty of the Lenin’s Own Communist League of Youth. Having these aims in view, the Communist League of Youth assume the colonel ship – in- chief of the Soviet Navy and Air Force, and supplies the Workers’ and Peasants’ Red Army with soldiers devoted to the Soviet Government, whose hands and eyes will not fail them in the fight with the enemies of the revolutionary people. The Communist League of Youth conducts among young people propaganda of military science, actively participates in the work of public defense organizations and strives to achieve that each member of the League, before joining the ranks of the army or navy, may know the art of marksmanship and may have thoroughly studied one of the military specialties.
Source: “Soviet Legislation (XVI): Selection of Decrees and Documents,” The Slavonic (and East European) Review, Vol. XV, No. 43 (July, 1936), pp. 221-225.