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Digital Archive International History Declassified

December 27, 1979

DECLARATION OF THE CC CPSU TO THE PARTY LEADERSHIP CONCERNING THE SITUATION IN AFGHANISTAN, ATTACHMENT TO CPSU POLITBURO PROTOCOL #177

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    The CC CPSU states that the removal of N. M Taraki, and the rise of H. Amin to political leadership in Afghanistan bolstered counterrevolutionaries. The CC CPSU approved a small military force to stabilize the country, supporting the regional and international interests of Soviet involvement in Afghanistan. The message is sent to the Members and Candidate Members of the CC CPSU, the Members of the CPSU Central Auditing Commission, the CC of the Communist Parties Of Union Republics, Kray Committees, and Oblast Committees of the Party, The Moscow City Committee of the CPSU, the Leningrad City Committee of the CPSU, and the Main Political Directorate of the Soviet Army and Soviet Navy.
    "Declaration of the CC CPSU to the Party Leadership concerning the Situation in Afghanistan, Attachment to CPSU Politburo Protocol #177," December 27, 1979, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, TsKhSD, F. 89, P. 14, D. 32. Translated for CWIHP by Gary Goldberg. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/111554
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Reference point 151 of Minutes Nº 177

Top Secret

Attachment 7

TO THE MEMBERS AND CANDIDATE MEMBERS OF THE CC CPSU

THE MEMBERS OF THE CPSU CENTRAL AUDITING COMMISSION

THE CC OF THE COMMUNIST PARTIES OF UNION REPUBLICS,

KRAY COMMITTEES, AND OBLAST COMMITTEES OF THE PARTY,

THE MOSCOW CITY COMMITTEE OF THE CPSU,

THE LENINGRAD CITY COMMITTEE OF THE CPSU, AND

THE MAIN POLITICAL DIRECTORATE OF THE SOVIET ARMY AND NAVY

The Central Committee of the CPSU considers it necessary to inform the Party organizations about the situation in Afghanistan and about the measures taken by our side. Recently, especially after the removal of N. M. Taraki and the ascent of H. Amin to power, the situation in Afghanistan suddenly became complicated and deteriorated. This is with respect to both the domestic and the foreign environment. As matters stood, the gains of the Revolution, the democratic, progressive regime were under threat of elimination.  The interference on the part of several countries into the affairs of Afghanistan is obvious and the scale of this interference is increasing. Armed groups are being sent into Afghanistan and weapons are arriving for the counterrevolutionary groups in the country. The activities of several of them are directed from abroad, malicious propaganda activity is being conducted, and religious fanaticism is being fanned. The goal of all these acts is the overthrown of the democratic system established by the people of Afghanistan as a result of the victory of the Revolution. In spite of the fact that the people of Afghanistan and their armed forces have for a long time been repelling the sudden attacks of foreign and domestic reactionary forces, the danger for the existing system continues to grow. This to a considerable degree is associated with the fact that the narrow circle of leaders (H. Amin and his henchmen) pursued a cruel and criminal destruction of cadres and leaders of the Afghan Revolution. Hundreds and thousands of Communists devoted to the cause of the Revolution and socialism and also non-Party personnel were subjected to repression.

The CC CPSU repeatedly turned to the Afghan leadership, trying to get the illegal repression stopped, calling for revolutionary law to be observed and not to operate at the whim of one or another persons in powers. H. Amin repeatedly gave assurances that such acts had stopped but in fact intensified the repression. Recently H. Amin, who had removed the former General Secretary of the PDPA and President of the Republic, N. M. Taraki, hypocritically stressed his friendly relations with the Soviet Union and gave ultra-revolutionary speeches, but in fact undermined the foundations of the revolutionary regime.

Thus the intervention from abroad and the terror against honest cadre devoted to the regime actually created a threat of eliminating what the April Revolution had brought Afghanistan.

Conditions were created in which H. Amin could have turned the development of Afghanistan in a direction which pleased him, including linking up to imperialism.

As a result of the entire policy of H. Amin an enormous discontent and protests against it grew in the country, but at the same time open attacks of armed formations sent from abroad revived and intensified.

However forces were found in Afghanistan which, in spite of the heavy losses as a result of unjustified, illegal repression conducted at the insistence of H. Amin, rose up resolutely against him, removed him from power, and created new control bodies for the Party and government authority. They included those comrades who had fought for many years against the despotic monarchy and had made the April Revolution together with Taraki. The new government and Party leadership headed by Karmal Babrak turned to the USSR with a request to give political and material aid, including military support.

The CC Politburo decided to give such support. In doing so the Soviet and Afghan governments relied on an intergovernmental treaty concluded between the USSR and Afghanistan on 5 December 1978. Chapter 4 of this treaty reads: “The High Contracting Parties, acting in the spirit of the traditions of friendship and good neighborliness and also the UN Charter, will consult and with the agreement of both parties, take the appropriate steps to ensure the security, independence, and territorial integrity of both countries. In the interests  of strengthening the defense capacity of the High Contracting Parties they will continue cooperation in military field”.

The CC Politburo has given its consent to the government of Afghanistan to the introduction of a small military contingent for some time. Its very presence in Afghanistan will serve as a guarantee (a check) on the sudden armed attacks of hostile foreign forces (mainly from Pakistan) and the attacks of domestic counterrevolutionary forces.

The Soviet military contingent will be withdrawn from Afghanistan as soon as the situation there stabilizes and the reasons which occasioned this action disappear.

In taking these measures, the Politburo of the CC has considered the strategic position of Afghanistan. It is located in direct proximity to our borders, neighboring on the Soviet republics of Central Asia, has a long border, and China is not far away. Therefore we need to show concern for the security of our socialist Motherland and consider our international duty.

In making such a decision the Politburo has considered the probable negative reaction of imperialist countries and their mass media, and also the possible inability of our friends to understand at first – some Communist parties of the capitalist countries and their allies. But the sudden attacks of class and ideological enemies and also the vacillations of unstable elements should not stop our Party and the Soviet Union from being equal to the interests of defending the security of the Motherland and supporting a progressive anti-imperialist regime in a neighboring country.

The CC CPSU Politburo expresses confidence that the Party organizations and Soviet Communists will well understand the motives which dictated the necessity of giving military support to democratic Afghanistan and will support these measures.

with Communist greetings

THE CENTRAL COMMITTEE OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY

OF THE SOVIET UNION

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