Please add all the resources, arguments, responses, and notes! This will always be ever-changing so don’t be hesitant to contribute!
Info about accessibility, eg. languages, subtitles, translations, file sizes, file formats, audio / video lengths in square brackets, [ ]. Information why someone might not click on a link, political / corporate biases, content notes or content warnings in parentheses, ( ).
NOTE: If a Sci-Hub URL or a LibGen URL does not work, please check their social media feeds to see if they moved domains. We will fix the links when notified.
What are “Tankies?”
Originally “tankie” was coined as a way to describe members of the Communist Party of Great Britain who supported crushing the Hungarian uprising in the 1950s and followed the Moscow line. This event caused a split amongst communist parties. Support for this action destroyed the credibility of the CPGB amongst other Marxists.
Modern use of the term “tankie” varies widely but tends to refer to those who white-wash or fully deny the crimes of both historical authoritarian-communist regimes, current tenuously-socialist regimes, and, in the name of anti-imperialism, sometimes literally any state at least nominally opposed to the US and its allies. Sometimes usage also includes right-wing regimes appropriating communist histories. More on the history and modern use of the term can be found here.
Note: Reading Lenin or being a Marxist-Leninist does not make someone a “tankie”. Some of the resources provided are from Marxist-Leninists themselves who are against “tankieism”. Additionally, the existence of “tankies” is not an excuse to be racist. Similarly, there is a large diversity of Marxist thought especially amongst BIPoC authors and activists.
Collaboration on this document
This document is maintained by a small but diverse network of marxists, anarchists, progressives, and other aligned leftists. If you want to become a part of the team to edit and add to this document, we expect that you would be an active member of the team. We’re not saying you have to be there everyday, but we do expect you to be active enough that you’ll actually be meaningfully contributing.
If you want to join, make sure you send us your Twitter handle when you send an edit request. We need to be able to verify who you are so we can make sure that you’re qualified to join the team. We regret that this means excluding anyone else who has something to contribute but we have to keep this place safe & secure from trolls and hacks.
If you’re not planning on being an active member or if you don’t have Twitter and yet you want to contribute, email any links, documents, and other resources to [email protected] and we’ll add them if they look good. Please specify what kind of resources they are, what topic they are, and the purpose they serve.
If you can, to make denialism and historical revisionism more difficult, try to find sources in their original languages and from trusted communist sources and state media. Leftist sources are especially encouraged.
Right-wing and reactionary sources are absolutely prohibited with two exceptions: 1) if they do cite honest, accurate sources do cite those instead; and 2) if they’re cited to expose the shittiness and or injustice of the right-wingers and reactionaries themselves (eg. citing RT to show the kind of white nationalist propaganda they have). We expect honest, reputable sources backed up by strong evidence. For more questionable sources, please note the concerns associated with it. Same for any potential reasons for disagreements.
If you know you are out-linking to absolute garbage with no recourse or minimal hope for salvaging, use WARNING!- in parentheses ( ). Sometimes this is necessary as proof or evidence something exists when people are in denial.
While creating out-links, please use the full URL so people can choose if they want to click on a certain website and can choose if they trust or distrust a source. We encourage redundant URLs if the source is syndicated across different websites. For example, many of the sources on Libcom, which is distrusted by many paranoid online self-identified Marxist-Leninists, can also be found on Marxists.org or the IWW (for some reason, they trust). Just space out redundant links with a semi-colon on the same line. This practice will also reduce the number of repeated lines when contributors search to see if a URL already exists.
There are some sites that we highly recommend for people to find research articles, ebooks, and similar sources that people otherwise have to pay for. Two of them are gen.lib.rus.ec and https://sci-hub.st/. Library Genesis (gen.lib.rus.ec) is filled with a vast array of ebooks whilst Sci-Hub (https://sci-hub.st/) is where you can get research articles, PDFs, and other articles from journals and research databases that you’d otherwise have to pay for to access. They are also for your personal pleasure if you want to find anything you want to download and read! We also recommend ResearchGate and Academia.edu for research articles and similar materials.
If you’re struggling with paywalled or geoloocked links, we recommend putting them on https://archive.vn/ so that you can get access to them. We do regret if this means going through extra trouble as most of the paywalled links here on this document aren’t archived. If you can archive them and put the archived links next to the paywalled links we absolutely encourage you to do so!
There is a TO-DO list at the bottom of the document. Template(s) for copying and pasting pre-existing formats are also available at the end. We strongly recommend providing sources for sections that only have small amounts of sources.
Note: “Table of Contents” is manually updated since there is no way to configure the automated script into columns and the user-generated subcategories make the formatting wonky. Add any new sections you make or any sections you find that isn’t in yet!
Table of Contents
1. What are “Tankies”
2. Collaboration on this document
3. Table of Contents
1. Environmental / Climate Catastrophe & Denialism
2. Centralized Planning is a built-in failure
3. Improvement to quality of life or accumulation =/= socialism
4. Chinese Economy
5. Soviet Economy
6. Cuban Economy
7. North Korean Economy
8. Nepali Economy
9. Vietnamese Economy
10. Venezulan Economy
11. Nicaraguan Economy
12. COVID-19 mismanagements
5. Fascist Collaborations
1. Red-Brown Alliances in 20th Century
2. Red-Brown Alliances, post-Cold War
3. Green-Brown Alliances
4. "Left-Wing Populism" is not always correct
5. Campism is bullshit
6. Putin is anti-communist
7. The Assads are anti-communists
8. Iran is a far-right reactionary state
9. Hezbollah is far-right
10. Qaddafi was anti-communist
11. Saddam was anti-communist
12. Anti-government reactionaries exist and are not allies
1. Russian Chauvinism
8. Central Asia
13. Chinese Imperialism
15. Xinjiang (شىنجاڭ, 新疆, East Turkestan)
16. Southern Mongolia
17. Indigenous Peoples of Mainland China
21. Vietnamese Imperialism
1. Great Chinese Famine
2. Chinese Cultural Revolution
3. Голощекиндік геноцид (голощёкинским, Goloshekındik Genotsıd, Kazakh Famine, Soviet Famine of 1932 - 1933)
4. Голодомор (Голодомор, Holodomor, Ukrainian Famine, Soviet Famine of 1932 - 1933)
5. Katyn Massacre
6. Bosnian Genocides
7. Lucanamarca Massacre
8. Protest Movements
1. Hong Kong/Macau
4. Persecution of Religious Freedoms
5. Expansion of Government Powers
6. Prisons, Police and Criminal Justice Systems
7. Drug Wars
8. Suppression of Political Dissent
9. Unwarranted Arrests or Unnecessary Arrests
10. Political Repressions
1. Suppression of anarchist movements
2. Suppression of Marxist movements
3. 1956 Hungarian Uprising
5. Anti-Asian racism
6. Anti-Black racism
7. Anti-Indigenous racism
8. Cutlural Genocide is Still Genocide
9. Language Suppression (Linguicide)
10. Anti-sex work
12. Ableism / Disableism
14. Patriarchy / Women's Rights / Feminism
15. Imperialism/Colonialism Apologia
16. Nationalism is bullshit
17. Border politics is bullshit
12. Dishonest Arguments About Leftists and Their Critics
1. Issues With Online Cultures
2. Anarchism is Diverse
3. Anti-Statism Is Anti-Imperialism
5. Great Man Theory
13. Dumping Area
14. To Do List
Describes misunderstandings about state-controlled economies and addresses some of the failures of so-called “socialist” states & governments in delivering on their so-called promise of socialism ranging from economics to the oppression of the very working classes they claimed to help
Environmental / Climate Catastrophe & Denialism
* “Imperialism in the Twenty-First Century” by John Smith https://monthlyreview.org/2015/07/01/imperialism-in-the-twenty-first-century/ [EN]
* “Unequal exchange: Dependency theory and the exploitation of nations” by Barry Finger https://isreview.org/issue/107/unequal-exchange [EN]