Communist International

​(abbreviation: Comintern)

International organisation of communist parties controlled by the Soviet Union and left-wing parties under their influence between 1919 and 1943

The Comintern was established in 1919 in Moscow. The communist parties from other countries who joined it (including the Soviet CP) were regarded as its sections, which were subordinated to the central administration. The Comintern was not a free forum of communist parties from different countries, but was throughout its existence under the control of the Soviet Union and fulfilled the power political aims of Moscow. The organisation financed, directed and controlled the activities of the communist parties abroad; it spread the ideas of the world revolution and called for the capitalist world order to be replaced with proletarian dictatorship.

Various methods were used for that purpose. In the early 1920s, the Comintern organised coup d’états and revolts in several European countries, including on 1 December 1924 in Estonia. The Comintern also gathered intelligence information for the Soviet Union and influenced the politics of foreign countries. As communist parties were banned in many countries, the Comintern arranged the left-wing parties to be taken over by communists and supported the formation of joint fronts with left-wing parties.

During the Second World War in 1943, the Comintern was disbanded. The Soviet Union tried to revive the international organisation of communist parties in 1947 by establishing the Cominform (Communist Information Bureau), but its activities were terminated in 1956.

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