Kultursociolog Bjørn Andersen

Enver Hoxha on Mehmet Shehu

Version 1.5 - 05.09.2006.

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From: Enver Hoxha: »The Titoites, Historical notes«, Tirana 1982.

Republished on the occasion of the publication of Ismail Kadarë's novel »The Successor«

Cf.: Article in Danish on Ismail Kadaré [2006]. Appendices in English

Wikipedia (Danish) on Enver Hoxha: [PDF]

Wikipedia (Danish) on Mehmet Shehu: [PDF]

Bjoern Andersen,

Enver Hoxha. Photo in the book

The plots continue

Already in May-June 1948 we were more than aware that Tito and the Titoites, as traitors to Marxism-Leninism, were and would remain inimical and dangerous to all the communist parties, to the revolutionary movements and national liberation struggles everywhere in the world, but for us, the Albanian communists and people, besides this, they were and would remain direct, savage, sworn anti-Albanian enemies. We were convinced that they would never give up their plans and aims to gobble up Albania, and to this end would not lay down their arms of subversion, interference and plots against our Party and country.

We would be vigilant and with our fist clenched at every moment, because, although it had suffered heavy blows, the Titoite agency in Albania would not cease working for the future and for long-term plans and variants. In this context, in a thousand and one ways, Tito and company would do everything in their power to regain their lost positions, to create conditions and the terrain in order to penetrate amongst us and destroy us. They could never reconcile themselves to the fact that Albania had «escaped» from their hands, could never sleep easily when they saw that a party, which they had wanted to turn into a blind tool, but which to their regret had constantly attacked them and their old pan-Slav dreams and in the end had smashed them, was working and leading in Albania. Hence, as long as [580] they remained in power, the Titoites would be real and dangerous enemies of our Party and country.

It did not take months or years for the Titoites themselves to prove the truth of this. On the contrary, when we still had not denounced them publicly, in order to «forestall the evil» they launched a whole campaign of slanders and accusations against our Party and its leadership, and immediately after the 1st Congress of our Party, Belgrade's anti-Albanian campaign assumed unprecedented proportions and intensity. The newspapers, radio stations, pamphlets and publishing houses, all the means of Titoite propaganda were activized in this dirty campaign, pouring out monstrosities against us. Amongst other things, at that time they accused us of being «violators of democracy» in the party and among the people (!), of killing «communists» and «honest patriots» (!), and later went on to the accusation that we were turning Albania into a «barracks surrounded by barbed wire» where everything was trampled under the «military jackboot», etc., etc.

According to this alarm for propaganda which thundered from Belgrade one would have thought that havoc was being wrought in Albania, but when it came to providing facts and arguments «the defenders of democracy» in Belgrade found themselves in a deplorable position: they were able to mention only one name, that of Koçi Xoxe!

But who were these «ideal defenders» of «pure democracy» who, simply because our organs of the dictatorship had condemned to death only one sworn enemy and agent, Koçi Xoxe, arrived at the «horrified» conclusion that we were «murderers» and «violators of democracy»?!

Here I shall not mention the mass murders, eliminations and exterminations which the Titoite army and the organs of the UDB perpetrated during the period 1945-1948 on the orders of Tito-Rankovic and company, under the pretext of the struggle to «clean up ustase and cetnici elements», «criminal bands», «remnants of the old regime», etc., nor shall I mention the black terror which they unleashed at this period (especially from the end of 1944 right through 1945) [581] upon the people of Kosova and the Albanian population living on their own territories in Montenegro and Macedonia, under the pretext of the struggle against «Ballist gangs», «nationalists», «great Albanians», etc. For comparison, however, I shall dwell a little on how «the Titoite democracy» acted and how our democracy acted in 1948 towards the respective opponents and enemies.

As I related in detail above, the whole picture of the treacherous work of the gang of Koçi Xoxe, Pandi Kristo and others as agents in the service of the Yugoslavs became more than clear to us especially in the early months of 1948. However, although they were not accused simply of having alien views, but especially of high treason towards the Party and the country, we allowed Koçi Xoxe, Pandi Kristo and company to take part in all the meetings of the Political Bureau, in the 9th, 10th and 11th Plenums of the CC of the Party, in the meetings of party activists which were held later and even in the 1st Congress of the CPA. Not only did we allow them to take part, but we also gave them the right to speak as often as they considered necessary.

What special type of «democracy» did Tito and Rankovic in Yugoslavia offer all those thousands of elements of the CPY who expressed solidarity with the letters of the CC of the CPSU and the Resolution of the Cominform?! They were clapped in handcuffs as soon as they began to open their mouths! And when hundreds of others simply demanded that what was written in the letters of the CC of the CPSU should be discussed in the party, that is, when they had not yet expressed themselves either for or against, the Titoite «democracy» arrested them, threw them into prison and killed them in secret. So, while we analysed the criminal work of the Koçi Xoxe gang for five to six months on end in the Party (where the traitors themselves were present), the Titoites did not allow their opponents to speak even in a single meeting of the organization of which they were members! Out of the whole network of anti-state agents that we discovered we handed over to the court only 4-5 persons, while the Tito [582] clique filled the prisons with thousands and thousands of people who were simply ideological opponents! And after all this Tito and company had the temerity to accuse us of being «violators of democracy»!

Of the four or five elements whom we handed over to the courts for punishment at the end of 1948, in fact, only one, Koçi Xoxe, was sentenced to death as a sworn traitor to the Party and state, as chief of the gang which had done everything in its power to put Albania in thrall to Yugoslavia! The 3 or 4 others were sentenced to 5-20 years imprisonment according to the degree of their culpability and the stand they adopted when they were caught red handed in the plot. In Yugoslavia, however, the Titoites killed the bulk of those thousands of Yugoslav communists who were thrown into prison as supporters of the Cominform or they simply disappeared leaving to trace. Nevertheless, they had the temerity to accuse us of being «murderers» !

The notorious concentration camps like Goli Otok, a kind of Mathausen in the conditions of «Yugoslav socialism», were set up not in Albania, but in Yugoslavia. It was not our communists and patriots who were incarcerated, maimed, and wiped out in them, but Yugoslavs, including hundreds of thousands of Albanians from Kosova and others who lived on their own lands in Montenegro and Macedonia. That is, we did not fill Albania with Goli Otoks, but the Belgrade leadership filled Yugoslavia with such notorious camps. And they had the temerity to accuse us of turning Albania into «a barracks dominated by the military jackboot»!

That, then, is what the «Titoite democracy» was, that is what the «advocates of Christian charity», Tito and Rankovic, were, who perpetrated the most monstrous crimes against the party and peoples of Yugoslavia without a tremor, while they were «horrified», because we had condemned to death one sworn enemy of ours and their obedient agent! It is the same «Rankovic democracy» which has been wreaking havoc in Yugoslavia for 35 years on end, the same «Titoite democracy» which recently unleashed the black [583] hundreds and thousands of Rankovices, Lubicices, Stambolices, and Herlevices against the peaceful demonstrations of the people of Kosova demanding respect for and implementation of their constitutional rights.

However, since 1948 Tito, as the rabid anti Albanian he was, could not and did not content himself simply with propaganda attacks against us.

Just like the reactionary governments of Western countries, the Titoite leadership set up on Yugoslav territory whole camps in which criminals and other agents, enemies of the new socialist order in Albania, were assembled, trained and prepared to infiltrate into our territory for sabotage and subversion. Thus, the time came when instead of the earlier «party» and state emissaries, Tito and his henchmen began to send us dozens of bandits, criminals, thieves and other reprobates who had fled from Albania together with the occupiers in 1944 or afterwards, on account of the crimes they had committed and the hostility they nurtured towards the new order of the dictatorship of the proletariat. In collaboration with the foreign imperialist and chauvinist agencies, especially those of the neighbouring countries, the renegades of Belgrade collected up the anti-Albanian scum of agents, political and ordinary criminals and fugitives wherever they were and brought them to Yugoslavia to prepare them as mercenary forces against the Party of Labour of Albania and the Albanian socialist state. Naturally, we were to receive these bandit «guests» from Yugoslavia as bandits and criminals are received — with the trap set.

These sinister forces constituted, you might say, the «external echelon» which the Yugoslav leadership was to throw in against us, as it did. At the same time, the Yugoslavs did not overlook the «internal echelon», either. In this were included not only those elements long recruited by the UDB. whom we had still not discovered, but all the remnants of the old order which we had overthrown. All these elements were predisposed to prick up their ears and accept the orientations and signals which came from Belgrade. This is under- [584] standable: the overthrown classes, the traitors, the discontented elements, enemies of the people's state power, all those who could not endure the justice of the Party and our people's state power, had pinned all their hopes on external support. And if up till 1948 they had pinned their hopes on the Americans and the British, now it was no trouble to add another ally and new patron. They were bound to try, just as they did, to activize themselves, to enter into contact with and operate in the Titoite's network, too.

In time, however, they, too, were uncovered and attacked. The hopes of Tito and company about arousing discontent, panic, despair, confusion and disorder in Albania were not justifying themselves. One after the other, all the gangsters and wreckers and the secret agents who were thrown into action in our country during this period fell into our hands, like rats in a trap. {1 From 1948 to 1955 the Yugoslav secret agency infiltrated into and organized in Albania 307 gangs of secret agents, wreckers and criminals who were all captured or wiped out. During the same period groups and secret organizations of agents set up and guided by the Yugoslav secret service in collaboration with Western secret services were discovered and wiped out in our country.}

Still we did not go to sleep. Time was to show that the Yugoslav leadership, either with «its own forces» or in secret agreement with the imperialist secret agencies, kept other «pawns in reserve» to bring into action at the moments which appeared most opportune and when their interests required. As to who these «pawns in reserve» were, this would be brought to light by the progress of our revolution. The main thing is that we remained permanently vigilant, aware that we would not be left to pursue our course in peace, because, apart from anything else, our many enemies would never allow us to work and live in peace.

In this way the initial phase of Tito's efforts to change the situation in Albania through wreckers and secret agents came to an end. Nothing shook our socialist fortress, its foundations were unshakeable. Step by step, along with the advance in [585] all fields of life, along with the cleaning out of imperialist, Titoite and imperialist-Titoite gangs and networks of secret agents, we became stronger and more determined on our course. About the beginning of the 50's it was seen clearly that Tito could achieve nothing against us through the methods of wreckers, secret agents and the old anti-Albanian and anti-socialist scum. However, precisely when his hopes of overturning the situation in Albania were fading, another renegade, Nikita Khrushchev, came to the aid of Tito, like a «gift from God».

The Khrushchevite betrayal, one of the greatest traumas the international communist and workers' movement has ever suffered, gave Tito new possibilities and means and, together with them, great hopes of changing the situation in Albania. Now his old chauvinist greed to gobble up Albania was to be combined with two other fundamental factors: with the hatred of the renegades of Belgrade for socialism which was being built in Albania, and second, with the desire to avenge themselves for the repeated blows and exposures which our Party and people had been inflicting on them for years on end.

The Titoites did not wait long before they launched their first attack on us through Tuk Jakova. It was by no means an accident that precisely when Tito and Khrushchev were putting their fiddles in tune, a month or two before Khrushchev went to Belgrade to kiss Tito, Tuk Jakova got up and repeated the hostile thesis of the Yugoslavs that allegedly they had created the Communist Party of Albania (!) and that the «merit» for all the victories achieved during the Anti-fascist National Liberation War belonged to them(!).

I have already dealt in detail with what this «thesis» is and why it was raised. Here I want to point out something else: Tuk Jakova was one of the participants in the Founding Meeting of the CPA in November 1941 and, during the years of the war up till 1955, like all of us, he, too, had heard this thesis many times and had not accepted it, but on the contrary had opposed it strongly. Then, how did it come about that he changed his mind and spat in his own face in April [586] 1955?! Undoubtedly, Çalamani (Dusan Mugosa) who, according to the code-word of the UDB, «remembered and did not lorget» his recruits, signalled Tuk to go into action. Tuk's other «theses» were all those which the Khrushchevite team were peddling wholesale in their preparation of the terrain for the 20th Congress of the CPSU: the dying out of the class struggle, re-examination of the line pursued by the Party, especially the rehabilitation of those enemies who had been condemned for opportunism and Trotskyism; the changing of the composition of the CC of the party and the bringing of condemned elements into the leadership, etc., etc.

Our Party immediately dealt powerful, merciless blows at the «theses» and aims of Tuk and those who had dished them up to him. Only one person, Bedri Spahiu, long known as an opportunist, a megalomaniac, and a partisan of the thesis of the dying out of the class struggle, etc., associated himself with Tuk Jakova. In condemning these two capitulationist and anti-party elements, the Plenum of the CC of the PLA held in June 1955, not only expressed the determination of the PLA not to fall into that mire in which the other parties of the then socialist countries had begun to sink, but, at the same time, gave Tito and company a good lesson. The Titoites' first attempt against us in the period when the Khrushchevite epidemic had broken out was foiled. Despite this bitter outcome, however, the Yugoslav leadership did not lose hope and did not spare its efforts to make new attempts at interference and subversion in Albania.

These were precisely the moments when the sensational and disgraceful reconciliation of Tito and Khrushchev was being brought to fruition in Belgrade at the end of May and the beginning of June 1955. Our clear-cut opposition to this notorious action is well known.

As soon as Khrushchev informed us at the last minute that he was going to Belgrade in person to make peace with Tito, to beg his «pardon» for «the mistakes committed against him» in 1948 and in 1949 (!) and to publish in the press the «decision» (which Khrushchev himself had taken) about annull- [587] ing the resolutions of the Corninform, we wrote a strong letter to Khrushchev in which we expressed our disaproval of these actions and especially of his annulling the resolutions of the Cominform. {1 «The daily experience of our Party in relation to the Yugoslavs,» we wrote to Khrushchev among other things, «both before the breach with the Yugoslavs in 1948 and later, to this day, proves clearly and completely, with many incontestable facts, that the principled content of all the resolutions of the Cominform in regard to the Yugoslav question has been completely correct... In our opinion such a hasty (and ill-considered) decision on an issue of great importance and of principle, without first making a profound analysis together with all the parties interested in this issue, and what is more, the publication of it in the press and proclamation of it in the talks in Belgrade, would not only be premature, but would also cause serious harm in the general orientation. .. We are convinced that this general line of our Party in its relations with Yugoslavia is correct. ..» (From the letter of the CC of the PLA to the CC of the CPSU, May 25, 1955, CAP.)} In several meetings which I had those days with the Soviet ambassador in Tirana Levichkin. I presented the Soviet leadership with a wide range of powerful arguments in support of our correct stand on this question. However, the Tito-Khrushchev accord came about. A few days after this act of treachery, on June 17, 1955, with the measures which our Plenum of the Central Committee took against Tuk Jakova and Bedri Spahiu, we gave Tito and Khrushchev direct and indirect warning that we would not reconcile ourselves to their plans, but on the contrary would mercilessly attack any attempt of theirs or their agents to subjugate us. However, it must be said that, although we never on any occasion accepted the line which Moscow dictated to us, but on the contrary opposed it, we could not remain «unaffected», as you might say, outside the waves which it stirred up. Both Khrushchev and Tito were to work, sometimes in unity, sometimes separately, in order to give it the maximum striking force, that is, to create a situation which would lead towards the «submission» of Albania.

Among the more serious events during this process, the Party Conference of Tirana in April 1956 must be mentioned. [588] In the context of the first phase of the open emergence of Khrushchevite revisionism it undoubtedly constitutes the main attempt of Tito and Khrushchev to overturn the situation in Albania, Held very shortly after the ill-famed 20th Congress of the CPSU, the Tirana Conference of April 1956; from the ideological standpoint, was a reflection of that congress .and the revisionist platform which it codified, while, from the organizational standpoint it was simply a plot hatched up by the Titoite leadership through the Yugoslav, embassy and, as it turned out later, in collaboration with the Soviet embassy, too.

It is a recognized fact that especially after the 20th Congress of February 1956, Khrushchev, in collusion with Tito, did everything in his power to overturn the situation in all the countries of people's democracy. As I wrote above, one of the first measures which Khrushchev took was the rehabilitation of those condemned in the time of the Cominform, bringing them into the leaderships of the parties and countries of people's democracy. Rajk in Hungary, Gomulka in Poland and Kostov in Bulgaria were all rehabilitated one after the other, the socalled movement for democratization» for «the re-examination of decisions taken under the influence of Stalin and the Cominform,» etc.. was launched. In many countries the «new line» of reconciliation with the former enemies, «peaceful coexistence» with imperialism, etc., were made law. None of the other erstwhile people's democracies of Europe, nor Mao Zedong's China, lagged behind in this headlong gallop.

Tito watched this process with satisfaction and did everything possible to give it new impulses and develop it in his own interest. Hoping that the time had come for him to take up the banner, he declared more than once that the «blame» for all that had occurred lay in the socialist order itself and, consequently, the «dogmatic», «Stalinist» socialism must be overturned and the Yugoslav order of «vital», «human self-administration» must be established.

Many were deceived by or enthusiastically welcomed all [589] this betrayal which was now codified and became an official ideology. Only our Party and country remained unshaken on the former line. This could not fail to infuriate, the preachers of modern revisionism, Tito and Khrushchev. When they saw that what was happening in the other countries was not happening here, they decided to pursue their old course — that of plots. In this direction Tito was a master.

The Tirana Conference was precisely a part of the Tito-Khrushchev plot to overturn the situation in our country. I say a part, because their plan, or their plot, was much more wide-ranging and of much greater proportions. At the Tirana Conference only the first step was to be taken, the feeling of the pulse, the preparation of the terrain, and later it would be carried further, especially at the 3rd Congress of the PLA which was to be held and did take place a little after the Tirana Conference. {1 The 3rd Congress of the PLA was held in Tirana from May 25 to June 3, 1956.}

In fact, what occurred at the Tirana Conference?

Initially, in Tirana and throughout the whole country the meetings of the party organizations had been held, meetings which were characterized by the political, ideological and organizational maturity of the whole Party, by the love which the communists nurtured for the Party, for its leadership and its line, by their determination to carry forward and defend this line resolutely, etc. At these meetings the delegates to the Party Conference of Tirana were elected, too. Up to this point, then, as I said, everything proceeded quite normally. The organization of the Party in Tirana, as the organizations of the Party throughout the country, once again confirmed its maturity and the correctness of the general line of the Party. Precisely when the delegates had been elected and were preparing themselves for the Conference, the Yugoslav embassy in Tirana was ordered to launch into urgent action the secret agents prepared long before, discontented elements, etc. The reason for this haste of Belgrade is easily understood: [590] the revisionist theses and decisions of the 20th Congress of the CPSU had just been published and the Yugoslav leadership judged that time must not be lost. In their view, a rapid, secret and intensive action in Albania might disturb and completely confuse the situation, otherwise «the Stalinist leadership of Enver Hoxha» could not be shaken. They started to spin the threads of the plot.

Under the pretext of «acquainting» people with and «popularizing» the decisions and theses of the 20th Congress of the CPSU, which the whole world was propagating noisily, the agents of the Yugoslavs and other elements condemned by the Party, instructed by the Yugoslav embassy, began secretly to indoctrinate the delegates elected to the Conference. Indeed, a «legal» course was followed: taking advantage of the love which our Party had cultivated for the CPSU, many delegates were «instructed» to demand from the organizations which had elected them that there should be a further «discussion», following the example of the «Soviet sister party», to ensure that «complaints» and «criticism», which would be in conformity with «the new spirit», were made against the leadership of our Party; that the communists were called on to tell «everything» «about the present and the past»; that efforts were made allegedly to «correct the mistakes and distortions» under the disguise of «democracy», «listening to the voice of the masses», «bringing the voice of the base to the Conference», etc., etc.

From the first day of the Conference, and especially in the first sessions of the second day, this «spirit of criticism» was very obvious, indeed the accusations very quickly advanced so far that the situation was becoming grave and disturbing even to the secret organizers of the plot.

Mehmet Shehu

Mehmet Shehu i: »Report on the 6th Five-Year Plan (1976-1980)«, 1976. The illustration is added by BA

Precisely in the middle of the second day of the Conference, quite unexpectedly Nexhmije arrived in Vlora. I had been about a week in Vlora on holiday, although in fact I was working, preparing the report for the 3rd Congress of the Party which was to be held in May that year. Nexhmije told me that that day (I remember clearly it was Sunday, April 15) Mehmet [591] Shehu and Begir Balluku had summoned her, and Mehmet Shehu had told her that «the situation in the Conference is serious», «they are demanding the rehabilitation of Koçi Xoxe, Tuk Jakova and Bedri Spahiu», calling for «links with Tito and the Yugoslav party« etc. «I am telling you these things,» Mehmet Shehu had concluded, «so that you go to Vlora to inform Comrade Enver and we think that it is necessary that he personally should come to the Conference.»

Later I shall explain why Mehmet Shehu gave this information, why he saw it «necessary» that I should go to the Conference and what was his true role in this plot. Here I want to point out that even without Mehmet Shehu's «request», after what Nexhmije told me, I could not have stayed a moment longer in Vlora. I ordered my car and two hours, later was back in Tirana.

I immediately summoned Mehmet Shehu and Beqir Balluku (who officially was the delegate of the Central Committee to the Conference, but in fact, as was proved later, he was the «delegate» of the Yugoslav secret service). Hysni Kapo was present at this meeting, too. I demanded from Beqir Balluku especially that he informed me in detail about what was being done and said at the Conference and, alternately flushing red and turning pale, he began:

«Yesterday, as soon as Fiqret Shehu finished delivering the report, they bombarded us with questions. The questions are. .. hard, shattering: 'Why is the Central Committee not acting quickly and extensively to popularize the 20th Congress of the Soviet party?'; 'Are we going to adopt its theses and decisions as the sister parties have done?!'; 'Does the Central Committee think that the decisions taken against Koçi Xoxe, Tuk Jakova, Bedri Spahiu and others should be re-examined in the light of the 20th Congress?'; 'Why has the publication in the press of articles and materials of the sister parties, which have been written in the spirit of the 20th Congress, been banned by the Central Committee of the Party?'; 'Why has the leadership of our Party not condemned Stalin's cult of the individual, as the others have done, and are there [592] manifestations of it amongst us?'; 'How does the leadership of our Party judge the Yugoslav question?'; 'Why are we not linking ourselves with the CPY like the others?...»

After mentioning a number of other such questions (the formulation of them may have been different, but in essence they are identical with these I mentioned above), Balluku concluded:

«These were the questions which were raised yesterday and the contributions of the delegates are developing in this spirit.»

«Did all the delegates ask such questions, and did they all speak in this spirit?!» I asked him there and then.

Balluku was silent for a moment, red-faced, and looked at Mehmet Shehu, but since Shehu sat like a mummy, he cleared his throat and replied:

«No! Only some comrades spoke about these problems and in this spirit, however, they are setting the tone for the Conference.»

«And did you give the proper reply to these questions and accusations raised against the Party and its line?»

«Yes, I gave it, but as it turns out, the problem has reached a serious stage. They are continuing to raise these questions. Therefore, Comrade Mehmet Shehu and I thought we should inform you and ask you to go to the Conference yourself to reply to them.. .»

«That is clear!» I interrupted Beqir Balluku. «You did well to inform me and ask me to come back. We shall go immediately to the Conference and not we, but those elements who are trying to put a spoke in the wheel and to distort our correct line, should be afraid of the confrontation. But before we go there I have something I must say to you.

«First, from what I heard from you, it is clear that we are facing a hostile attack which, undoubtedly, is not only inspired, but also organized. How and by whom we shall find out, indeed very quickly, but my opinion is that the Yugoslavs have had not only a finger but a whole arm in this pie. We shall look at this, too. However, I am of the opinion that [593] you, Beqir Balluku, as the delegate of the Central Committee of the Party, should not have allowed the situation to reach this point. You know the line of the Party and our stand on all those problems which a few 'bold spirits' are now raising, seeking their 're-examination', is more than clear. We have discussed all those problems and taken collective decisions on them at the proper time and I am not aware that any of you is unclear about them, let alone opposed to them.»

«That is so!» put in Mehmet Shehu in a low voice. «We have been in agreement and said so.»

«Then, why was it necessary for me to come to cope with the situation and to give the answer to questions which you know very well?!» I asked Mehmet Shehu and Beqir Balluku. «From every standpoint, this is not only incorrect, but also impermissible for main leaders of a party. All of us must defend the things which all of us have settled and decided. Nevertheless,» I continued, «the main thing now is to deal with the existing situation and, since you considered it in order that I should do this work, I will certainly do it.»

«The second thing I wanted to say to you is about the tactic which must be pursued. I think I should act in this way: I shall ask for the floor immediately and quietly, without attacking the accusers for the time being, I shall make the delegates clear about the essence of the truth in connection with the questions and base accusations which have been raised. I shall explain what the stand of our Party has been and is on those problems, how we have acted, and from what positions the accusations are raised and where they lead to, if they are allowed to become established, I am convinced that the overwhelming majority of the delegates are sound elements loyal to the Party and, if any of them are confused, matters will soon be made clear to them. In regard to those 'bold spirits' who want a revisionlng, I shall deal with them concretely in the second phase when the delegates have been made clear about the truth. I shall demand that each of these elements explain to the Conference from what positions he raises these filthy accusations, on whose behalf he [594] is speaking and who has inspired him. I am convinced that, confronted with the truth, they will be exposed and discredited.»

So, in the afternoon of April 15, I went to the Tirana Conference and followed the tactic which I outlined above. I must say that as soon as I entered the Conference hall I was surrounded by an atmosphere which gave me even greater confidence and strength: as soon as they saw me the delegates rose to their feet and burst into applause and cheers for the Party and its Central Committee. Excitement and joy began to appear in their faces. It was clear, the comrades were being freed from an anxiety which had disturbed and worried them for nearly two days on end. I was even more convinced of the truth of this as soon as I began to speak. The explanation in a comradely spirit which I began to make of the problems, the arguments which I raised to prove the correctness of the general line pursued by the Party, very quickly electrified the hall. Time after time the delegates shouted from the body of the hall:

«That is the truth! Long live the Party!»

Only a few individuals were out of tune with this general spirit: when all the delegates rose to their feet they were obliged to stand up with the majority, but they did not applaud or cheer. Of course, we did not want their applause, even if it cost us nothing. They had to be gripped firmly in the vice, to admit through their own mouths that in all the things they had raised they proceeded from hostile anti-Albanian and anti-party positions, that they had carried out the orders and «directives», of the Trotskyite Yugoslav leadership, and for all this evil work they would have to render account. On the following day, April 16, in particular, I had to deal especially with these elements. As I said, the phase of quietly clearing up the problems in principle had ended with success. Now it was the time for the devastating attack on the plotters and their tools at the Conference. I called on one of them by name and demanded that he «explain» to us there and then what had impelled him in the accusations which he made!


At first he began with a show of «boldness», but then began to mumble that he had brought forward «the opinion of his basic organization».

«Leave your basic organization out of this!» I told him. «First of all, explain to us what you were doing in the car of the Yugoslav embassy on such and such a date, where you went and what instructions you received?!»

An excited ripple ran through the hall.

«It was a mistake,» the tool of the Yugoslavs dared to «defend» himself. «I thought it was an Albanian car.»

«Let us assume that at first you made a mistake,» I continued with his «logic», «but when you got in and heard them speaking Serbian, did Serbian sound to you like Albanian?!»

The whole of the hall burst into laughter. The agent of the Yugoslavs was deathly pale. He did not know what straw to cling to and what to say. We continued in this way with two or three others who, up till yesterday, had shown themselves «unrestrained» and «very bold» but were now left completely isolated and discredited.

After this there was virtually no further need for me to intervene. The delegates began to speak and, with the maturity, courage and the spirit of criticism and self-criticism which have always characterized our communists, ensured that the proceedings of the Party Conference of Tirana were carried through to the end with complete success.

The attempt to turn it into the first action to overthrow the sound leadership of the PLA and change the situation in Albania was nipped in the bud.

During the Conference, and especially after it, we made a dispassionate analysis of what had occurred and, as I said, on the basis of an endless series of facts we arrived at the conclusion that everything had been organized by the Titoite leadership through the Yugoslav embassy in Tirana. Likewise, as early as those days we arrived at the correct conclusion, that it was the revisionist platform of the 20th Congress of the CPSU which had inspired and encouraged both the Yugo- [596] slav leadership and its agents within our ranks to undertake this hostile attempt.

After the group of conspirators at the Tirana Conference was routed, some of its participants were expelled from the Party and some others, those who turned out to be in contact with the Yugoslav embassy (because at that time we had no facts about the Soviet embassy) were handed over to the court.

At that time, however, because of the level of our knowledge, we did not manage to discover and attack the most powerful implement of foreign agencies who, on this occasion, set in action by the Yugoslav UDB, secretly played the main role in the plot hatched up. This was Mehmet Shehu. The facts which had to do with his stand at the Conference did not permit us to arrive at any conclusion other than the ones we did. Now, from analysis of earlier and later events, especially of the facts which we discovered after his suicide on December 18, 1981, the Party has arrived at precise and completely proven conclusions.

However, before I speak about the role and conspiratorial aims of Mehmet Shehu and his enemy group at the Tirana Conference in 1956 and after it, up till the moment when he killed himself, I consider it necessary to go back to the past to show who Mehmet Shehu really was, where he came from and whom he served.

From the investigations following the suicide of Mehmet Shehu and from the documents in the possession of the Party, it results that Mehmet Shehu was an agent recruited by the Americans from the time he attended Fultz's school in Tirana. On Fultz's orders, Mehmet Shehu went to study in a military school in Italy, on the orders of the American secret service he was sent to Spain to penetrate into the ranks of the International Brigades. The aim of the American secret service was to provide its agent with the «aura» of an «intemationalist fighter» so he could be used for long-term aims in Albania later.

After the defeat of the anti-fascist war in Spain, Mehmet Shehu went to a refugee camp in France where he stayed [597] for three years, at a time when many of his comrades escaped from it. In the camp he was recruited as an agent of the British Intelligence Service also. He was taken out of the camp by an officer of the German Gestapo and one of the Italian SIM, passed through Italy, where he was held two months, and was then handed over in Durrës to the Albanian notorious spy in the pay of the Italian secret service Man Kukaleshi, who released him after 20 days, and Mehmet Shehu went to Mallakastra and linked up with the organization of our Party there.

During the National Liberation War, Mehmet Shehu and his wife Fiqret Sanxhaktari were recruited as agents of the Yugoslavs, too, by Dusan Mugosa. Mugosa began his work with Mehmet Shehu in Vlora in the spring and summer of 1943 and intensified it even more when the pair of them «arranged» that they should be together in the 1st Shock Brigade which we formed in August of that year. While in the brigade Mugosa capped his work neatly. He recruited Fiqret Sanxhaktari and arranged her betrothal to Mehmet Shehu for the aims of his secret activity. Like every foreign secret agency, the Titoite agency, which was emerging and taking form «in the flames of the war», operated with its recruits for short-term and long-term aims: in the short term, immediately, Mugosa demanded and urged his agent Mehmet Shehu to commit the maximum number of sectarian acts with the aim that later, when necessary, the Yugoslavs could use this sectarianism, which they implanted and encouraged themselves, to accuse the leadership of our Party of «sectarianism», just as they did (as I said above, this was consummated at Berat in November 1944). At the same time, in the context of «collaboration with the allies», the Titoite secret agency learned a great deal from the experience of the Intelligence Service. Apart from what I said above, it also took into account that it might suffer defeat in Albania, therefore, it prepared Mehmet and Fiqret Shehu as agents for difficult times in the future. To this end, the former was given the secret pseudonym MISH (Mehmet Ismail Shehu), [598] and the latter the pseudonym FISARI (Fiqret Sanxhaktari).

From the written documents of Mehmet Shehu, which have now been found, it is proved that he was a member of the Berat plot, together with Koçi Xoxe and Nako Spiru, irrespective of the fact that he was not at Berat in November 1944.

Thus, in a letter addressed to the Central Committee of the Party [to Koçi Xoxe] in December 1944, Mehmet Shehu attacks the line of the Party as «sectarian» and «localist» and describes its sound leadership as a «clique within the Party». And in order to leave no doubt as to whom he was referring, Mehmet Shehu, enthusiastic over the anti-party turn at Berat, writes with his own hand that «if the Party... had not made the turn which it is making we would certainly be heading for disaster.» {1 From the letter of Mehmet Shehu addressed to the CO of the CPA [to Koçi Xoxe] on December 10, 1944. CAP.}

Naturally Mehmet Shehu, as a recruited agent of the Yugoslavs, would take an anti-party stand and unite with the plotters. At the same time, through this letter of solidarity he found the opportunity to express his personal discontent with the leadership of the Party and, especially with me, and to demand from Koçi Xoxe and those who directed Koçi Xoxe a reward for the services which he had rendered and was rendering.

During the war, too, Mehmet Shehu had displayed signs of discontent, because at the 1st National Conference of the Communist Party of Albania at Labinot in March 1943 he was elected only a candidate member of the Central Committee and at Permet, at the Anti-fascist National Liberation Congress in May 1944, he was not promoted to general, like several others whom he scorned.

Mehmet Shehu wanted the mistakes which he had made and continued to make by violating the line of the Party and failing to carry out the orders of the General Staff, over which he had been criticized several times, to be forgotten, [599] and now it is quite clear that he did not do all this without a purpose. So he had used terror in the villages through which the 1st Brigade passed to discredit the Party and the partisan forces, elevated to a legend the «incursion» of two battalions of the 1st Brigade to rescue the General Staff from the German-Ballist encirclement, although he not only did not rescue it (because the Staff broke through the encirclement with its own forces), but Mehmet Shehu deliberately lost two weeks, in place of two days, taking the forces of the Brigade over a number of dangerous paths, thus, causing many brave fighters of this Brigade to lay down their lives heroically.

During the war Mehmet Shehu opposed the order of the General Staff for the 1st Division to cross the Shkumbin River and move to the north. This opposition of Mehmet Shehu's was not something accidental. It was in accord with the Anglo-American plan to prevent the movement of formations of the ANLA from the south to Central and Northern Albania and with the great pressure which the Anglo-American Mediterranean Command exerted on the General Command of our Army to stop the movement of the Division to the north {1 See Enver Hoxha «The Anglo-American Threat to Albania» (Memoirs), Tirana 1982, pp. 248-268, Eng. ed.} and prevent any attack on the forces of Abaz Kupi describing this movement and the vigorous development of our fighting actions as «interference in its strategic plans». However, our Party and the General Staff had their own strategic plans for the liberation of the whole of Albania as quickly as possible. Our categorical order for the immediate movement of the 1st Division to the north resulted in foiling the Anglo-American plan and the services of Mehmet Shehu towards his patrons.

Hence, Mehmet Shehu came to Albania and fought not as a communist and partisan, but as a mercenary sent by the Anglo-Americans to serve their plans for the future of Albania. {2 That Mehmet Shehu was a secret agent of the Americans and served them, is also borne out, among others, by a letter dated February 6, 1944 which the CIA agent Larry Post (who later was sent by the American secret service to Albania) wrote to another secret agent of the Americans Hasan Reçi, «I repeated many times to them that we wanted facts, facts, and facts about every situation and everything,» stressed Larry Post in this letter and continued: «Transmit to Mjekrra — Mehmet Shehu — my warmest greetings. Is it possible for him to send me a report on his situation and activity?! You do not write whether you have contacted him. . .! P.S. Mjekrra may read this letter, too.» (From the original copy of the letter in CAP.)} After his suicide, a program written by his own hand [600] in 1942, at the time when he came to Albania, was found in his safe. This was nothing but a bourgeois-democratic program which made no mention at all of socialism and the communist party, but of many parties, just as the Anglo-American missions and the reactionary groups which supported them tried to bring about in the period immediately after Liberation. We are now in possession of documents which fully prove that Mehmet Shehu was an agent of the Intelligence Service, too. In these documents figure his name and some coded pseudonyms such as, BAB-008, etc. From them it emerges that Mehmet Shehu had even received money for his services and the centre instructed to leave him at peace, which meant that he was one of those potential agents that are left, in the language of spying agencies, »dormant« so as to be used when needed {1 From its assessments of the situation in Albania in the end of 1944, the British secret service envisaged the eventual organization of an opposition to the new state of people's democracy which was created. They included Mehmet Shehu among the main elements of this opposition. This is borne out by a document dated November 10, 1944, the photocopy of which has been taken from the archives of the Foreign Office, London, and which, among other things, says about Mehmet Shehu, «. ., he is a communist, but his personal ambition exceeds his loyalty to the Party». (FO 371/43554 PRO.) Whereas in another document dated February 10, 1945, the section of the British Intelligence Service for Albania (Force No. 399) describes Mehmet Shehu «to be the only man with sufficient following to prove dangerous to Hoxha, should they disagree» (read: over the program of the British Mehmet Shehu brought with him on his return to Albania in 1942, which was found in his safe after his suicide. See p. 599 of this book). WO-204.}


Thus, this hidden agent of the American secret service, later trained by the Intelligence Service in the refugee camps of former volunteers from the International Brigades in France to sabotage the National Liberation War in Albania, linked, as I wrote above, during the war with the Yugoslav OZNA (UDB), could not but go further down the road of betrayal: immediately after Liberation, on the 'Orders of his boss, Fultz, who at that time was official representative of the American mission in Tirana, he was not long in infiltrating into the Soviet secret service. We are now in possession of a letter which Mehmet Shehu sent Major Ivanov immediately after Liberation, couched in so many vilifying terms against the line of the Party and full of hatred for the sound cadres who defended this line, especially against the General Secretary Enver Hoxha, Hysni Kapo and others. This proves that Mehmet Shehu, apart from his links as a secret agent of the Yugoslavs, had also established links with a greater power, with the secret service of the Soviet Union. This is what, among other things, he wrote to the Major of the Soviet secret service, Ivanov, chief of the Soviet military mission in Tirana:

«... I feel it my duty to tell you my opinion about the things which I see and express what I think. I know very well that this action of mine on this occasion is contrary to the rules of the organizational line of our Party, but having confidence in you... I take the responsibility of referring directly to you.» {1 From the letter of Mehmet Shehu addressed to Major Ivanov. CAP.}

The letter in the form of a report to Ivanov goes on to make an all-round attack on the line of the Party, which led the National Liberation War and triumphed. He attacks the historic periods and events from the past struggle of the Party, such as the Conference of Peza, the Congress of Përmet, and the 1st National Conference of the Party, and is in complete conformity with the anti-Marxist and anti-Albanian views of Velimir Stojnic and Koçi Xoxe. Like Velimir Stojnic, Mehmet Shehu, too, describes Enver Hoxha and the [602] other comrades as «a CLIQUE» {1 The words in capitals are quoted from the original letter.} which must be purged, going further than the decisions which were taken at Berat. «In order to make the change,» writes Mehmet Shehu, «a total revolution in our Party is required» (implying a total purge).

While describing Tito as «a head of INTERNATIONAL value» and in order to fulfil his personal ambition which he could not achieve during his struggle full of vacillations and sectarian and anarchist mistakes, Mehmet Shehu closes his letter to Major Ivanov with certain «conclusions» and appeals written in capital letters.

«Amongst us, Albanian communists,» he writes, «there is no one as capable as Tito in Yugoslavia. . . In order to help us to advance well, it is necessary that we have direct and immediate aid from the CI [Communist International] or the CPY [Communist Party of Yugoslavia] {2 Underlining and brackets in this excerpt of the letter are ours (Editorial Board).} and this is needed quickly because the situation has given rise to very important problems.» (After Mehmet Shehu's suicide, in his safe was found a note in his own hand about his having written a letter to Ivanov.)

In this context it is easy to understand the acrobatic twists and contradictory stands of Mehmet Shehu during the National Liberation War and after Liberation, before and after the 8th and 11th Plenums of the Central Committee (in 1948), sometimes defending the Yugoslav theses, sometimes opposing them under the protection of Soviet military advisers.

At the 8th Plenum Nako Spiru was denounced and condemned as an enemy by the Yugoslavs and Koçi Xoxe, while, as I wrote above, Mehmet Shehu was described as «anti-Yu-goslav» and the «attacks» and «pressure» of Tito's delegates and Koçi Xoxe to remove him from the army were stepped up. However, these same «critics» from Belgrade, indeed, in Tito's name, insisted that Mehmet Shehu should not be completely eliminated, but on the contrary, should be given the [603] portfolio of a ministry(!). He was appointed minister of communications, that is, a member of the government. {1 At the 11th Plenum Kristo Themelko declared: «The Yugoslavs liked Mehmet Shehu.» Indeed, at one moment he turned to Mehmet Shehu and said: «It's true that I have a whole load of mistakes, but don't forget that whenever we went to Belgrade, it was you Tito received first and not me!» «As for the criticisms in December 1947,» continued Kristo, «true, the Yugoslavs criticized him, but they told me to exert pressure on the leadership to appoint him a minister! They wanted to keep sweet with Mehmet Shehu, because they were afraid of him!» (From the minutes of the llth Plenum of the CC of the CPA, CAP.)

Further evidence of Mehmet Shehu's «special» links with the Titoites is provided by his «confidential» correspondence with Dusan Mugosa. Thus, in the letter which he sent Mugosa on February 9, 1944, Mehmet Shehu wrote among other things: «The letter which you sent me reassures me.. . ; there you show what special personal interest you have taken [in me]. The letter reassures me, comforts me, advises, helps and teaches me. I am keeping the letter and it will serve me as your photograph with which to remember you. . . Ah! If only you were to desert and come back to us we would keep you under cover as an illegal fighter!»

In the letter of April 22, 1944, on the occasion of Mugosa's departure from Albania, after a dithyramb of praise and describing him with servility as «our teacher», Mehmet Shehu calls the Albanian communists «communist brigands», a «hotch-potch of bitter vegetables» and concludes: «Oh, Sale! [the pseudonym of Dusan Mugosa]... To whom will you entrust this special mission. . .?» (The letters are kept in the CAP.)}

After the letters of the CPSU(B) to the CC of the CPY, after the 11th Plenum of the CC of our Party, Mehmet Shehu adapted himself to the line of the Party, defending the Soviet Union and Stalin and «exposing» Tito and his clique as agents of imperialism, as our whole Party did. Despite the thundering of Mehmet Shehu against the Tito clique, Belgrade remained silent. The Yugoslav UDB, in collaboration with the American CIA and the British Intelligence Service, did not denounce him, because he was their potential agent infiltrated into the Soviet secret service, the trust of which he enjoyed.

Following the death of Stalin, the team that came to [604] power condemned Beria, tine chief of the Soviet KGB, for many violations of the law. We asked Mehmet Shehu to examine whether mistakes had also been made in the organs of our Ministry of Internal Affairs of which he was the head. Mehmet Shehu was afraid that his links with the Soviet KGB or with the Western secret agencies had been discovered and he might suffer the same fate as Beria. He went to the Soviet ambassador Levichkin, whom he assured of his loyalty to the new Khrushchevite team that had come to power, and sought Soviet protection, because, according to his statements, «Enver Hoxha regards me with suspicion» and he was very disturbed about this. Levichkin advised Mehmet Shehu to come to me and make his position clear, while ensuring him that he, Levichkin, would protect him. Levichkin personally came to me, told me of Mehmet Shehu's worries and that he had advised him to come to me. Mehmet Shehu did not come for two or three weeks. At a subsequent meeting, Levichkin asked me:

«Have you talked with Mehmet Shehu?»

«He has not sought any meeting with me,» I replied.

«Perhaps you should summon him,» said Levichkin.

«By no means!» I said. «I have no reason to summon him. On the contrary, he must come to me himself and make a thorough self-criticism. It is true, we are friends with you, but I consider it a very grave mistake that he went to talk with you about a problem which has to do with us, without first talking to me, as General Secretary of the Party.»

Levichkin was alarmed and «ordered» Mehmet Shehu to come to me. First he sent Fiqret Shehu to feel my pulse. She came to enquire what was wrong with Mehmet Shehu, who was «extremely worried» (as if she herself knew nothing!). «We have no problem with him,» I replied, «so you had better ask him whether he has something against us!» In this way Mehmet Shehu was reassured that we had not made any discovery and had no suspicions about him. On Levichkin's urging too he came to me, made a self-criticism and also made a self-criticism in the Political Bureau and in the Plenum of the Central Committee, saying that he had made a [605] serious mistake in going to the Soviet ambassador to complain about the General Secretary of the Central Committee without discussing the matter with him and without raising the problem in the leadership of the Party.

Later, something else occurred which greatly alarmed and worried Mehmet Shehu: Sokrat Bufi, a party cadre who was studying in Moscow at that time, sent the Central Committee a letter in which, amongst other things, he said: «Mehmet Shehu is a provocateur...» Mehmet Shehu was furious about this and demanded insistently in the Secretariat and in the Political Bureau of the Central Committee and several times to me personally that Sokrat Bufi should be arrested and condemned. We did not accept his proposal, because to condemn him simply for the fact that he had made a criticism of a party cadre would be contrary to the norms of the Party. Since Sokrat Bufi was appointed vice-chairman of the Executive Committee of a district, the doubts of Mehmet Shehu that we had discovered some of his sins were further aroused and he continued to live and work in feverish anxiety. The coming to power of Khrushchev and the 20th Congress of the CPSU, which brought reconciliation between the Soviet revisionists and the Titoites, found Mehmet Shehu still in this state of anxiety.

After the abortive attempt through Tuk Jakova and Bedri Spahiu to change the situation in Albania, the foreign secret agencies considered that Mehmet Shehu, too, should be brought into action. I say the foreign secret agencies, because at those moments the aims of the Soviets and the Titoites, as well as of the imperialists, with American imperialism at the head, for the disruption and destruction of the socialist countries by means of the «Khrushchev line», were all in accord. Subsequently, of course, after the sound leadership of the Party and state had been replaced with a revisionist team, the foreign secret agencies would commence their usual fights, each of them striving to take Albania under its own wing.

Hence, Mehmet Shehu was ordered by the Soviets and the Yugoslavs (but with the approval of the British and [606] American agencies) to go into action with all his group in order to achieve in Albania what had been or was being achieved in the other former countries of people's democracy. Precisely at this point begins the implication of Mehmet Shehu in the Party Conference of Tirana, where the task of first secretary of the Party Committee of the district was performed by his wife and long-term agent of the Yugoslavs, Fiqret Shehu. By chance (but also through the secret machinations of Mehmet Shehu) the other agent of his group, Beqir Balluku, was appointed the delegate of the CC of the Party to the Conference. In regard to the others, the «claque» of the group of plotters, the need did not arise for MISH, FISARI or Balluku to be involved in their orientation. No, the chiefs of the plot, especially Mehmet Shehu, had to operate in secrecy, far behind the scenes, so they could escape in any unexpected eventuality. The employees of the Yugoslav embassy and their henchmen long known and condemned by our Party, such as Liri Gega, Dali Ndreu, Hulusi Spahiu and others, were to deal directly with the «claque», as they did.

On this occasion, the duty of the chiefs of the plot initially was to create for elements from the floor, concealed under the mandate of «delegates», conditions and possibilities to vent all their spleen and give the tone to the Conference. Only when they were assured that everything was proceeding normally could other more obvious and decisive steps be taken. Beqir Balluku and Fiqret Shehu accomplished this secret task. The fact is that from the first day of the Conference they created all the possibilities for the enemy elements to pour out all the filth of their anti-party questions and, when the time came for discussion, through their «inac-tivity», allegedly because «they were taken by surprise and dumbfounded» and were «incapable» of «explaining» things to the enemies, they arranged that enemy elements were given the floor one after the other, and this brought about that the first phase of the plot proceeded as they had envisaged and planned behind the scenes.

Precisely when the anti-party discussions at the Confe- [607] rence blazed up, Mehmet Shehu and Beqir Balluku «consi-dered it in order» to demand that I go to the Conference. Why? They had two main aims for this urgent demand which they made:

First, to place me personally directly under the main anti-party attack, to raise the tempers higher and, if I were faced with an irresistible attack or retreated, then Mehmet Shehu would manoeuvre in the troubled waters that would be created to disrupt the situation further, to take the lead and, coming out openly, carry through to the end the scenario prepared by his patrons.

Second, Mehmet Shehu had also taken account of the possible failure of the plot, indeed, even he was afraid when he saw the reins were slipping from his hands. Not knowing that their leader was Mehmet Shehu himself, the enemy elements, «the claque», did not spare their attacks on him and his wife, since they identified them with the sound leadership. In such a case he considered it in order that I should come, do battle myself, and if he saw that the plot had failed, then he would act as was his custom: would come out «beside me», would launch the «attack« against minor elements, the pawns in the game, and no doubt, against Tito, too, and as before, would wait in gloom and anxiety for more appropriate moments.

However, his patrons, too, both the new ones (Khrushchev and company) and the old ones (the Anglo-Americans and the Titoites), sensed and knew that those situations which existed then in the other parties and countries of people's democracy did not exist in Albania. The unity of the PLA was powerful. In the 15 years of its existence the PLA had proved that it did not tolerate mistakes, slips and deviations, its political and ideological past was pure, it had strong links with the masses and enjoyed the boundless love and respect of the people. In such a sound situation it was not at all easy for the enemies to stir up anti-party feelings and triumph, It was more likely that everything would burst like a soap bubble, as it did.


The enemies calculated these things well, and understandably, they were not so silly as to destroy their main agent for nothing. On the contrary, they did everything in their power to ensure that he remained as «clean» as possible, attempted in one instance or the other to launch him into the attack, but as soon as they saw he might be in danger they gave him the signal to change his position and come out «on the side» of the sound leadership.

This is what occurred on this occasion and what was to occur even later. As soon as they saw that the Party did not fall into the trap set, Mehmet Shehu and Beqir Balluku retreated into the background and «condemned» the plotters, while Fiqret Shehu vowed that she had not had the slightest warning, that the plotters had operated «behind her back», that she had been shut up at home preparing the report, etc. Fiqret Shehu was dismissed as first secretary and the reprimand was recorded on her registration document. At that time, we knew nothing in regard to Feçor Shehu {1 An anti-party element and sworn enemy of the PSRA. On the proposal of Mehmet Shehu he was appointed minister of Internal Affairs. After the disclosure of the activity of Mehmet Shehu as a secret agent, the true features of Feçor Shehu were revealed, too, and he has been handed over to the organs of justice for investigation of his enemy activity.}, who, it now turns out, was an agent in the service of the UDB and was the liaision agent between the Yugoslav embassy and Mehmet Shehu. Mehmet Shehu personally maintained the direct links with the Soviet embassy, readily exploiting the good relations we had with the Soviet Union at that time.

In the situation which was created after the failure of the Khrushchevite-Titoite plot at the Tirana Conference and the resolute, open unmasking by our Party of the events in Poland, and especially those in Hungary, the UDB of Tito-Rankovic ordered their agents Liri Gega, Dali Ndreu and Panajot Plaku to flee to Yugoslavia in order to create an opposition abroad and to fight us through their mouths. The first two were arrested attempting to cross the border, while [609] Panajot Plaku, with the aid of Mehmet Shehu and his collaborators amongst the officers of the army and the state security, such as the former minister of defence Beqir Ba-lluku and the former minister of internal affairs Kadri Hazbiu, crossed our state border and worked for some time in an allegedly clandestine radio which broadcast the old Titoite poison against our Party and country from the territory of Yugoslavia.

Here it is important to point out that even in the stand towards Dali Ndreu, Liri Gega and Panajot Plaku, not only the continuous anti-Albanian activity of the Titoite leadership, but also the collaboration of the Yugoslavs with the Soviets was clearly obvious. When our organs captured Dali Ndreu and Liri Gega red-handed and placed them in the dock, the Yugoslavs jumped up in rage, and so did Khrushchev. He sent an urgent radiogram to the Soviet ambassador in Tirana Krylov to intervene with me to ensure that the enemies and traitors were not condemned. These were precisely those days of Novembier 1956 when, as I said above, Tito delivered his notorious speech at Pula in which, amongst other things, he called openly for the overthrow of the leadership of the PLA and for my condemnation. Khrushchev sent Krylov with two main instructions: we were not to reply sternly to Tito's speech and not to punish the captured agents who were rendering account before the people's court. We very quickly gave Khrushchev and Tito the answer: in regard to the first instruction, we published articles in the press in which we fired off all our batteries against Tito, Titoism and the speech at Pula; in regard to the second instruction, we gave the agents and traitors the punishment they deserved.

This was bitter medicine for Khrushchev and Tito, but they did not stop their anti-Albanian actions. A little after this, the flight of Panajot Plaku to Yugoslavia was achieved. However, the Titoites were soon to be convinced that they could do us nothing from outside, either through the «op-positions» the Dusan Mugosas tried to set up with the reac- [610] tionary emigrées, or with the spleen the abject traitor Panajot Plaku vented on us through a so-called clandestine radio, so they sought Khrushchev's help. The Yugoslavs hoped that Khrushchev would exercise pressure on us and influence us so that we would accept Panajot Plaku in Albania with the aim that he, together with their agents and other secret enemies, could carry out the plots and plans of the Yugoslav and the Soviet secret services from inside. Sensing the advantages of this course, Khrushchev was ready to collaborate with Tito, as he did over the Polish and Hungarian question, to mislead the work of the Party Conference of Tirana (1956), etc., therefore, he did not fail to intervene for a «concilia-tion» with the traitor. As the first step, he told us that he was considering admitting him to the Soviet Union, since Plaku himself had expressed this desire in a letter he had sent Khrushchev.

«He is a traitor,» I told Khrushchev, «and if you accept him in your country, we shall break off our friendship with you. If you do accept him, you must hand him over to us so we can hang him in the middle of the square in Tirana.» {1 See Enver Hoxha, «The Khrushchevites» (Memoirs), Tirana 1980, p. 354-356, Eng. ed.}

This was the end of these old agents of the Titoite clique and, obviously, also of the hopes which both the Titoites and the Khrushchevites had based on them.

However, this by no means meant that from now on we would no longer have to deal with other attempts, traps and plots. Therefore, on no occasion did we permit any lowering of vigilance. On the contrary, our Party of Labour continued persistently with the ideological and political struggle against Titoism, at a time when our contradictions with the Soviet revisionist leadership were steadily mounting. We were heading for the confrontation of June 1960 in Bucharest.

Just as had occurred continually with the Titoites, the Khrushchevites, too, did not spare either their means, their pressure and blackmail or their agents, recruited long before, on [611] the eve of and after this great confrontation. The pawn with which they made their opening move was Liri Belishova. In the summer of that year Belishova was in Beijing with a parliamentary delegation, at the time that the meeting of the World Federation of Trade Unions was being held there. Contrary to every party rule and norm, the profound contradictions which had developed in the ranks of the international communist and workers' movement between the Chinese and the Soviets emerged openly at that meeting. In opposition to the stand of the leadership of our Party, which did not want to pronounce itself prematurely on these contradictions, Liri went to the Soviet embassy and reported all that the Chinese had told her. We sent Liri Belishova two letters, one to Beijing and one that reached her on the way back to Moscow, in which we criticized her for her stand in Beijing and explained the stand she must take in Moscow. However, Liri Belishova, as an agent of the Soviets, not only did not follow the advice of the leadership of the Party, but met Koz-lov, talked with him, listened to him and even handed over to the Khrushchevites our letters (radiograms) which, when we asked her for them, she told us she «had burnt».

When she returned to Albania, Liri Belishova took Comrade Hysni aside and said to him, «Let us keep Comrade Enver out of these clashes,» but Hysni denounced Liri. She had also met Mehmet Shehu and told him, «Don't talk about Khrushchev, because everything you say reaches his ears.» Mehmet Shehu reluctantly admitted this much later, when he saw that the leadership of the Party was condemning Liri Belishova. What other pressure Liri Belishova had exerted on him is not known.

Likewise, we do not know what Kosygin said to Mehmet Shehu when he was in hospital in Moscow for treatment. Mehmet Shehu told us that Kosygin had tried to convince him that China must be condemned and this «had angered» him, so he left the hospital and returned to Albania. Now it turns out that Mehmet Shehu, together with Fiqret Shehu, had been summoned to a meeting with Mikoyan at which Andropov [612] and I think also the chief of security Shelepin were present and talked for four hours with them.

In the end, apparently, the Soviets decided that they should set Mehmet Shehu in action for the subjugation of the leadership of our Party. I say «in the end», because some months earlier, in February of that year, they not only hesitated, but did not even want to inform Mehmet Shehu of the quarrels which they had with the Chinese.

As I have written in my book of memoirs «The Khrushchevites», when we arrived in Moscow for a top-level meeting in the framework of the Comecon and the Warsaw Treaty, they informed me that Mikoyan sought an urgent meeting «with Enver Hoxha alone». I insisted that Mehmet Shehu should be present, too, and since despite their wishes I took Mehmet Shehu with me, the Soviets hesitated, frowned, but were faced «with an accomplished fact». {1 See Enver Hoxha, -The Khrushchevites» (Memoirs), Tirana 1980, pp. 387-389, Eng. ed.} In order to avoid angering Mehmet Shehu, they justified themselves for not inviting him to the meeting on the grounds that they had decided to speak «only with the first secretaries of sister parties». Now it turns out that this «reason« was a bluff. They did not want Mehmet Shehu to learn what had occurred, because they knew that he was the man of many agencies and might carry informa-tion to the Americans and the British. However, the events evolved and in May-June the Soviets changed their tune.

Meanwhile, Mehmet Shehu saw that the leadership of our Party was not going to tolerate Khrushchev's plans against Marxism-Leninism and the international communist and workers' movement any longer. Our Party worked out the platform for the stand it would take at Bucharest, retaining its right to present its views at the regular meeting of all parties (in November 1960 in Moscow). At that time Mehmet Shehu was in a quandary: whom to please and whom to displease? To place himself in opposition to the leadership of the Party was of no benefit to him, because he would suffer the fate of [613] Liri Belishova and all the other anti-party enemies. However, as a man of many foreign secret agencies he had to take the Americans, the British and the Yugoslavs into his calculations, besides us and the Soviets.

Which way would this multiple agent turn in this complicated situation?!

However, a way out was presented to him. At this time Mehmet Shehu was sent to New York at the head of a government delegation to the UNO. He travelled on the British trans-Atlantic luxury liner «Queen Elizabeth». We knew that Tito, also, was travelling on that ship, but it never crossed our minds that Mehmet Shehu might meet Tito. Now we learn from his fellow-travellers who were his collaborators and are now in jail that Harry Fultz of the American CIA and Randolph Churchill, who was an Intelligence Service agent but figured on the passenger list as a journalist, were also aboard. During this trip of several days, Mehmet Shehu, being their agent, had secret meetings and talks with Tito, Fultz, and R. Churchill, informed them of the situation in and the stands of our Party, the acute contradictions which were arising with the Soviet Union and the stand which the leadership of our Party intended to take in Moscow.

The strategies of the three agencies, Yugoslav, American and British, were in accord and they suggested to their super-agent that he should unreservedly «support» the correct stands of the leadership of the Party, which would lead to the great breach and rupture with the Soviet Union. It would be no loss to them that we supported China. On the contrary, this «friendship» with their secret pro-American, pro-Titoite friends (such as Zhou Enlai, Liu Shaoqi and Deng Xiaoping) would serve their longer-range strategic plans (to involve us in the liberal policies of China, such as it began later with the Nixon-Zhou Enlai meeting, or when Zhou Enlai urged Beqir Balluku to act relying on a Yugoslavia-Rumania-Albania alliance), etc.

Mehmet Shehu returned from the United States of America full of «courage» and became more catholic than the Pope. was unrestrained in his «defence» of the line of our Party [614] against the plans and stands of Khrushchev and the revisionist Soviet leadership. Indeed, he organized «scenes» in order to boost himself and thoroughly cement our trust in him. When we were at the Meeting of 81 parties in Moscow, in November of that year, he proposed we should leave the house in which the Soviets had placed us because «they are capable of poisoning us». (He was afraid rather on his own account.) When we went to our embassy in Moscow, through the secret microphones which the Soviets had planted and which we discovered, he «transmitted» to them a fiery message eulogizing our Party and its first secretary, while using all the gravest insults against them for their disgraceful act in eaves-dropping on their close friends, such as the Party of Labour of Albania and its leaders. Mehmet Shehu stubbornly opposed our return by ship via the Black Sea and organized our return by train through Austria and Italy. We agreed to these measures, because we no longer trusted the Soviets, either, but with the zeal which he displayed he strengthened our trust in him and also protected himself. Nevertheless, Mehmet Shehu could not but be worried that he might pay with his head for the «betrayal» which he was committing against his Soviet patrons as a disobedient agent.

There was no lack of some hints and needling. In my book «The Khrushchevites» I have recorded that Kosygin said to me, «There are enemies in your leadership». {1 See Enver Hoxha, «The Khrushchevites» (Memoirs), Tirana p. 432, Eng. ed.} However, when I called on Mehmet Shehu to translate this to me better, because, although I understood Russian, I had never mastered those Cyrillic letters which hindered me from reading and learning it well, Kosygin shut his mouth and said that I «had not understood him properly». There, too, I have written about the pressure exerted on us by the Soviet militarymen who had an argument with Mehmet Shehu, too. Now another explanation can be given for why Khrushchev at our last meeting said to us: «This is how MacMillan wanted to speak [615] to me», at which Mehmet Shehu jumped to his feet and we broke off the meeting. Apparently, when Khrushchev mentioned the Englishman MacMillan, Mehmet Shehu feared that he might open a wound which would cause him great pain.

After the Meeting of 81 parties, Khrushchev and company tried to patch up their relations with us. This they tried to do at our 4th Congress, with the letters they sent us, as well as through the Chinese, etc. They also tried to turn us to their course through economic and military pressures, but they failed in all directions. We maintained our immovable stand. We expelled the Soviets from the base at Vlora; they cut off their economic and military aid, even broke off diplomatic relations.

Precisely at the extremely difficult and delicate moments which our Party and country were experiencing in 1960 we uncovered the dangerous plot of Teme Sejko, hatched up and supported by the American 6th Fleet, the renegades of Belgrade and the Greek chauvinist circles. In collaboration with one another, these forces of darkness had thrown into action their long-standing agent Teme Sejko and a number of other agents around him to prepare and cause «internal» disorders to break out in Albania which would serve as a pretext for a foreign military intervention against our country. However, although we were deeply involved in the struggle against our new Khrushcbevite enemies, we had not relaxed for a moment our vigilance towards our old enemies — the imperialists, the chauvinists and the Belgrade renegades. We discovered their plot, smashed it and, at the 4th Congress of the Party, {1 The 4th Congress of the PLA carried out its proceedings from 13-20 February 1961.} spoke about it and publicly denounced it and its organizers. At those moments the Soviets pretended to be totally ignorant of and even alarmed about it, so much so that Gomulka asked that a commission from the Warsaw Treaty be set to «verify» things, which we turned down! What all this alarm of the Soviets was about, this we did not know at that time.


Now it is fully proved that at a time when the Americans, the Yugoslav and Greek chauvinists were secretly hatching up the plot of Teme Sejko and company, the Soviets got air of this plot through their secret agents and made the most of it as a very favourable occasion to maintain and strengthen their positions in Albania, which were being shaken.

Let us not forget that the Soviet fleet was still at Vlora. Let us not forget that those were days and months when we were at daggers drawn with the Soviets. The Soviets sensed that their end was coming in Albania and feared that their naval fleet might be driven from Vlora. We had just launched the attack in Bucharest and were preparing the main and general attack for the Meeting of communist and workers' parties which was to be held in Moscow in November that year. To forestall the evil the Soviets threatened us in many ways, indeed, in one letter they wrote that we must extinguish the «spark» which was kindled at Bucharest. {1 See Enver Hoxha, Works, vol. 19, p. 128, Alb. ed. 616} We continued resolutely on our course. Then, they tried to find a way out through another more «powerful» and more «menacing» means: through their secret agents Mehmet Shehu, Beqir Balluku and Kadri Hazbiu they tried to employ the truth about Teme Sejko's plot as a means of pressure and blackmail on us in order to make us kowtow to the Soviets. They even gave Mehmet Shehu, Beqir Balluku and Kadri Hazbiu additional information ensured through the KGB, which confirmed the threat of an attack prepared by the West and the Yugoslavs against our country. After this the Soviets and their agents expected that we would fall into the trap and see our «salvation from the danger» in relying on the Soviets, especially on their fleet in Vlora. Hence, with the card of the imperialist-Yugoslav plot the Soviets said to us: Don't do anything silly, the attack is prepared, imperialism will gobble you up, therefore come to your senses, because you need us! What a masquerade! These plans and base calcula- [617] tions by the Khrushchevites in 1960 about the plot of Teme Sejko are very similar to the plans which the Titoites concocted with Koçi Xoxe and Beqir Balluku at the end of 1947 and the beginning of 1948, that we were allegedly under threat of a Greek attack and, therefore, the Yugoslav divisions should come «to defend and save us»!

However, just as we foiled the Titoites' plots and secret plans in 1947 and 1948, we also foiled the plots of the imperialists, the Yugoslavs and the Soviets in 1960. On the basis of many facts and documents which we discovered, we handed Teme Sejko and his network of agents over to the people's court where they admitted through their own mouths, not only their participation in the plot, but also the work that they had done as agents for the Yugoslav, Greek and American secret services.

Naturally, our foiling and public denunciation of the imperialist-Yugoslav plot would alarm the Soviets, as it did. The smashing of the first, American-Yugoslav-Greek, plot automatically blew up the second plot which the Khrushchevites. and their agents Mehmet Shehu, Beqir Balluku and others had hatched up in secrecy. The Soviets saw that after this they had their days numbered in Albania. And true enough, very soon we ousted the Soviet naval fleet from Vlora, without it ever crossing our mind that we could rely on it to «save ourselves». This fleet of the Khrushchevites had already become just like the American 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean and we knew that our salvation would not come from relying. on it, but from expelling it, as we did.

The fact that we uncovered and foiled this plot right at the outset made Mehmet Shehu draw in his horns. Meanwhile, our Party pursued the course of Marxism-Leninism and Mehmet Shehu «endorsed» its line, indeed, he greatly advertised his role in these situations and, of course, in the eyes of the Americans and the Yugoslavs posed as if it was he that inspired this course. From the plans which they had made and the secret contacts which they maintained, the Americans and the Yugoslavs knew this, while all the Western [618] secret agencies were in agreement that their «boy» should thunder against them with such statements as «We are dancing in the wolf's mouth», etc., etc. They accepted any abuse, content that their agent was climbing higher and higher and might turn the helm of our Party and state towards the West.

Mehmet Shehu zealously continued the «struggle» against the Soviet revisionists, but proceeding from other purposes and aims, quite the opposite of the lofty aims of the Party which worked for the defence of Marxism-Leninism and the supreme interests of our people and socialist Homeland.

The events of Czechoslovakia in August 1968 came about and the Party decided to denounce the Warsaw Treaty, to take our country out of this ill-famed treaty de jure, although de facto, we had withdrawn from it at the end of 1960. On this occasion, Mehmet Shehu delivered the speeches as prime minister and, of course, he presented this to his patrons as his personal victory. The American agency (and those linked with it, first of all, the Titoites) thought that Albania was left isolated and undefended, and since China was far away, it considered that the time had come when our country would turn its face towards the West.

The trump card of the Western and Titoite agencies, Mehmet Shehu, was brought into action. In 1972 he went to Paris for an operation, accompanied by the same team that accompanied him to the UNO, plus his wife Fiqret Shehu. There he made contact with a top figure of the American CIA, who said to him: «What are you doing? You are getting old, you must act!»

Mehmet Shehu reported to him about the situation and the plots which were being prepared (by Beqir Balluku and Abdyl Këllezi and company). The CIA recommended that he should act, but without compromising himself. It proposed three variants for the elimination of Enver Hoxha: 1) through a motor accident; 2) through shooting with a rifle from a distance; or 3) with delayed-action poison. It was left to Mehmet Shehu to put into action the variant he considered most feasible.


Through Feçor Shehu, Mehmet Shehu received the same instructions from the Yugoslav UDB which was completely in agreement with the CIA.

In Paris Mehmet Shehu was also given a sophisticated radio receiver-transmitter which his eldest son, who was an electronics engineer, installed in his house, ready to function.

In fact, Mehmet Shehu had turned, or was to turn, his whole family into a nest of agents, a family of vipers. As we said, Fiqret Shehu had been recruited during the war by Dusan Mugosa and had the pseudonym FISARI, without taking into account what she might have done earlier when she went to Italy on a one- or two-year course during the occupation, or what Liri Gega (and Smith {1 Officer of the British military mission in Albania, secret agent of the Intelligence Service, a friend of Liri Gega and Mustafa Gjinishi. During the National Liberation War he was attached to the Staff of the 1st Division of the ANLA. See Enver Hoxha «The Anglo-American Threat to Albania» (Memoirs), Tirana 1982, p. 224, Eng. ed.}) might have done with her when they worked together in the 1st Army Corps. Eventually Mehmet Shehu had made his second son Skënder a collaborator and when he went abroad (especially when he went to study in Sweden), Mehmet Shehu charged him to establish contact with the CIA and act as a liaison agent, while activating his younger son and his wife in the direction of a foreign embassy in Tirana.

Of course, the elements recruited by Mehmet Shehu over a long period, or the hostile and immoral elements of his own family would not suffice for him to accomplish the evil work the CIA and the UDB demanded of him. He would aim to extend the network of agents and conspirators everywhere. To this end in 1972 he was directed and ordered by the American CIA to work out concrete plans to overturn the situation in Albania in favour of the West, to set in motion and urge in this direction the agents known or unknown to him, regardless of whose they were, Yugoslav, Greek, British, Italian, and others, but avoiding compromising himself.


Thus began the implementation, of the ramified conspiratorial plan organized under cover by Mehmet Shehu:

I. The hostile activity of Fadil Paçrami and his group in the field of culture, art and the radio and television service for the degeneration of the line in these fields. However, as is known, the Party quickly dealt with this group and its activity. Mehmet Shehu hastened to wash his hands of them, indeed, he thundered loudly against people of art and the youth in order to realize his anti-party aims in this way, as he had done during the War, to create antagonism in the rela-tions and the links of the Party with these strata.

II. In 1973 the group of Beqir Balluku was set in motion. It prepared the military putsch through the black theses, «the theory of slipping away», of abandoning the coast and the cities to imperialist aggressors, the patrons of Mehmet Shehu. Be-qir Balluku was completely unmasked. Even Petrit Dume and Hito Çako who were in the plot, abandoned him. Mehmet Shehu, who was the head of the plot and pulled the strings behind the scenes (now it turns out that all the strategic and tactical plans had been worked out contrary to the plans of the Council of Defence and these black materials, as they were called when we discovered them, had been approved by him), tried to save Petrit Dume and Hito Çako. They had great hopes that through Mehmet Shehu their «heads would be saved», as he told them in the Plenum of the Central Committee which met at that time on these problems, and they did not give Mehmet Shehu away, but he could not save them from the danger for fear of damaging himself.

III. Meanwhile Mehmet Shehu, this time more directly, set in motion his henchmen Abdyl Këllezi, Koço Theodhosi and Kiço Ngjela to carry out sabotage in the economic field, especially in the oil industry and agriculture, to disorganize the economy of the country by beginning to work out and introduce forms of Yugoslav self-administration.

However, as is known, Mehmet Shehu failed in these three directions.

Throughout this period Tito, who was following the si- [621] tuation attentively, thought that since he had his agent in the leadership of our Party and state, after the fall of Rankovic in Yugoslavia and the exposure of the barbarities which he had perpetrated in Kosova, as well as after the situations which were created with our leaving the Warsaw Treaty, he could make some concessions in regard to Kosova and our relations with it. Kosova began to breathe a little more freely, Albanian schools were opened, the University of Prishtina was set up, cultural relations, visits to one another and other activities began. Tito_and company cherished the old dream that through Kosova they could influence the liberal forces in Albania and, in this way, make possible the union of Albania with Kosova in the framework of Yugoslavia. When the leaders of Kosova told Tito: «The Albanians are fanning up nationalist sentiments and speaking against you,» he replied: «That's not your business, let them abuse me if they want to...» Tito said this because he knew that in Albania he had Mehmet Shehu, who, after three failures, was regrouping the other conspirators, especially in the Ministry of Internal Affairs, with Kadri Hazbiu, Feçor Shehu and some others Nevertheless, Mehmet Shehu needed time to hatch up new plots.

Meanwhile Tito died. A situation of political and economic insecurity was created in Yugoslavia. The world capitalist crisis had gripped Yugoslavia, too, which was up to its ears in debt. The situation was seething in Kosova more than anywhere else on account of the Great-Serb oppression, the unemployment and the gloomy prospects for the working people who saw that in their Motherland, in socialist Albania, the situation was quite different. Thus, Kosova did not serve as a bridgehead for the penetration of Titoite self-administration and ideological degeneration into Albania, but Albania showed Kosova the brilliant features of true socialism in our country. And this it did through normal, official bilateral relations and contacts with Kosova and not through secret agents, because, first, this was not the line of our Party and, second, the Yugoslav secret agency (through Feçor Shehu) was at the [622] head of the organs of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Therefore, the «theses» of the Yugoslavs about the alleged interference of Albania by means of secret agents for the organization of demonstrations in Kosova have no foundation. The American and Yugoslav secret agencies began to be worried lest Kosova escape from their control, lest Albania intervene, possibly, as they thought, in collaboration with Bulgaria and the Soviet Union.

Meanwhile, the situation in Kosova was becoming ever more difficult and complicated. The people of Kosova and the whole Albanian population living on their own lands in Montenegro and Macedonia were seeing more and more each day that in the Titoite reality their legitimate rights, indeed, even those rights written in the Yugoslav Constitution, were being violated and denied.

The profound economic and political crisis which had swept the whole of Yugoslavia was manifesting itself in more tragic colours in Kosova. Not only was the standard of living several times lower than the average of Yugoslavia, but the gap was being ceaselessly widened to the detriment of the Kosovars; unemployment, especially among the Albanian youth there, was wreaking havoc. Whereas 10-15 years earlier the demagogue Tito had laid the blame on Rankovic for the mass expulsions and displacements of Kosovars to Turkey and the Western countries, now the Kosovars were seeing that they were forced to leave their lands and betake themselves to the markets of the West, just as in the «time of Rankovic». At that time Rankovic drove them out, now unemployment was driving them out just the same, indeed, in even greater numbers. Hence, it was not one or five Rankovices that were to blame, but the Yugoslav reality, the Titoite «self-administrative socialism». The people of Kosova were bound to become conscious of this reality, just as they did. However, these were not the only reasons which were bringing the cauldron to boiling-point. Above all, the people of Kosova and the whole Albanian population living in their own territories in Yugoslavia saw and felt deeply that in Titoite Yugoslavia they were treated [623] as second-rate citizens, their legitimate rights were trampled on and they were insulted and despised by the Titoites for what has always been dearest to the heart of the Albanian: his national pride and dignity.

Precisely in such situations which had long been boiling up, the demonstrations took place in Kosova at the beginning of 1981. The Great-Serbs and the Yugoslav UDB were alarmed, sent in the army and crushed the demonstrations with tanks. Hundreds of people were killed and wounded. A conflagration dangerous to the internal situation of Yugoslavia, now shaken by both economic crises and political crises, broke out. These savage repressive measures caused a great sensation in international opinion. Albania maintained an open stand, as resolute as it was wise.

Apart from the slanders that these demonstrations had allegedly been inspired by Albania, the Yugoslavs had to take immediate measures to «discredit» the «Stalinist» Albanian leadership in order to disturb and overturn the sound situation in Albania, as well as to confuse the patriotic-revolutionary forces in Kosova.

They demanded that their agent Mehmet Shehu acted. The Yugoslav UDB was in collaboration with the CIA and was aware of its directive for the liquidation of Enver Hoxha, Therefore, they demanded that Mehmet Shehu send his wife urgently to Paris. The demonstrations took place in March, while she went to Paris in April 1981. There an envoy from Çalamani (Mugosa himself had died, but his mission as an agent «lived on») presented himself to her and gave her the poison which had to be administered immediately to Enver Hoxha.

Fiqret Shehu and Mehmet Shehu had racked their brains together about when, where and how they would act with the variants which the CIA had suggested to them, and had found as the most feasible variant the administration of the delayed-action poison, which could be carried out when we paid each other visits. In the conditions under which I travelled the motor accident was ruled out, while the attempt [624] with a rifle was too sensational and With unforseeable dangers.

The order which the Yugoslavs gave Mehmet Shehu to act immediately and quickly according to the third variant found him unprepared. Mehmet Shehu was afraid, did not like being placed in a corner with no room to move. Therefore, he appealed to his major patron, the American CIA. Fiqret Shehu began to visit the capitals of Europe — Vienna, Stockholm, Copenhagen. Both in Stockholm and in Denmark she met representatives of the CIA and put forward Mehmet Shehu's idea that they should not act hastily, as the Yugoslavs demanded, because they were not well prepared; the poisoning or physical liquidation of Enver Hoxha could be put off until March 1982 (during the winter holidays), while up till that time they could undertake some action which might cause a split in the Party and encourage the liberal element. The representative of the CIA discussed the matter with his centre and at the second meeting, this time in Denmark gave his approval for Mehmet Shehu's variant.

In this context Mehmet Shehu arranged the engagement of his son to the daughter of a family in the circle of which there were 6 or 7 fugitive war criminals, including the notorious agent of the CIA Arshi Pipa. Such an engagement could not fail to attract the attention of the public. And it was done precisely with the aim of attracting public attention and causing a sensation. If it were accepted by the Party, it would lead to splits and liberalism among others, too, in the Party, the Youth organization, etc. If it were not accepted by the Party, measures would be taken against Mehmet Shehu, not imprisonment, of course, but demotion, removal from his position or even expulsion from the Party. This would cause a sensation and the Yugoslavs could use it, as they needed it for their propaganda purposes to discredit the leadership of the Party of Labour of Albania and especially Enver Hoxha, who, as they have repeated over and over again, is «eliminating» his collaborators, as Stalin did.

However, the plans did not work out as Mehmet Shehu [625] had intended. The Party intervened immediately, the engagement was broken off, Mehmet Shehu was criticized by the comrades for this major political mistake, he was required to make a profound self-criticism to find the sources of such an error and it was left that this would be done after the 8th Congress of the Party. {1 The 8th Congress of the PLA took place on November 1-8, 1931.} He did not expect this. He tried to make «some other mistakes»: he completely neglected his report for the 8th Congress of the Party, presented it late and with flagrant political errors and the Political Bureau rejected it. Mehmet Shehu wanted to make a «self-criticism» at the Congress over the engagement of his son (his aim was to cause an upset in the Congress), but it was refused, too. In the Congress he purposely sat like a «repentant sinner» and this was so obvious to the delegates and the TV viewers that they began to ask one another why.

Meanwhile, the question of Kosova was becoming dangerous. The Yugoslavs were being unmasked before international public opinion, while the authority of our country was rising. The Yugoslavs saw that nothing happened either before the Congress or after it. Mehmet Shehu delivered the report to the Congress, he was elected to the Political Bureau and no measure was taken against him, as the Yugoslavs hoped, to demote him or to remove him from the function he had in the state. Once the Congress was over, perhaps Mehmet Shehu informed the Yugoslavs that even after the delivery of his self-criticism he was being treated just the same. From what he had understood from his talks with us the measure of sanction would be of an internal party character. This was of no benefit to the Titoites, the Great-Serbs and the Yugoslav UDB, who were expecting and wanting disorder to occur in Albania at all costs. Therefore, on the eve of the meeting of the Political Bureau, at which the grave political mistake of Mehmet Shehu was to be discussed, the Yugoslav embassy in Tirana, acting on orders which it had received from Belgrade, sent its agent and contact man Feçor Shehu to [626] Mehmet Shehu to transmit the «ultimatum» of the UDB that «Enver Hoxha must be killed at all costs, even in the meeting, even if Mehmet Shehu himself is killed.» So hard-pressed were the UDB, the Great-Serb and Titoite clique with the situation in Kosova, so gloomy seemed the future, that they decided to «destroy» their trump card, their superagent, provided only that something spectacular would occur which would «shake socialist Albania and the Party of Labour of Albania to their foundations»!

At ten o'clock at night, on December 16, 1981, Feçor Shehu went to Mehmet Shehu's home and transmitted the order of their secret centre.

On December 17, the discussion commenced in the meeting of the Political Bureau. All the comrades, old and new, took part in the discussion, and resolutely condemned Mehmet Shehu's act of engaging his son to a girl in whose family there were 6 to 7 war criminals. They expressed their dissatisfaction with Mehmet Shehu's self-criticism, demanded that he made it more profound and disclosed where the cause of such a mistake lay, asked him many questions, reminded him that he had made mistakes during the National Liber-ation War also that he had placed himself above the Party, they spoke about his unrestrained conceit and arrogance towards the cadres and towards virtually all his closest collaborators in the work of the government, the Political Bureau, etc. (On the day following the suicide, all these contributions to the discussion, which had been tape-recorded, were heard just as they were made by the whole Plenum of the Central Committee and the meetings of party activists.)

The criticisms by the members of the Political Bureau were strong, open and bolshevik, but only «the recording of a serious reprimand on his registration document» was demanded as sanction. This was the spirit in which I, too, had prepared my contribution in which I outlined the history of Mehmet Shehu's mistakes, beginning from the period of the war (this contribution, too, was heard by the Plenum of the Central Committee and by the meetings of party activists [627] as it would have been delivered following the contributions of other comrades). However, because the meeting went on late, my contribution was not delivered that day. Thus, it was left that the meeting would continue the following day. At the end of the discussion on the first day. I said to Mehmet Shehu:

«Reflect deeply all night and tomorrow tell us in the Political Bureau from what motives you have proceeded. Your alibi for the engagement does not hold water, something else has impelled you in this reprehensible act.»

What I said alarmed Mehmet Shehu, he suspected that the crime which he was preparing might have been discovered. The «bold» Mehmet Shehu thought all night about how to escape from the tight spot, worked out and applied a plan of his own. Apparently, he judged matters in this way: «I am as good as dead, the best thing is to save what I can,» and he decided to act like his friend Nako Spiru, to kill himself, thinking the Party would bury this «statesman», this «legendary leader», this «partisan and fighter in Spain» with honours, would not sully his reputation but would say that «the gun went off accidentally» (as he suggested in the letter which he left), and thus, at least, he would not lose his past and his family would not suffer.

Together with his wife he flushed the poison down the WC and charged his eldest son with dismantling and removing the compromising parts of the radio which he had installed for him.

Fiqret Shehu, as the agent she was (she who trembled and wept over nothing), agreed to the suicide of her husband coolly and cynically, provided only that their «historic» past and she and her sons were saved.

However, they had reckoned their account without the innkeeper. As soon as they informed me about Mehmet Shehu's final act, within moments I proposed that his suicide should be condemned, that he had acted as an enemy, and the Political Bureau expressed its unanimous condemnation of the act of this enemy. Not only the leadership and the Party, [628] but our whole people considered this a hostile act and maintained a revolutionary stand. The Party and people continued with enthusiasm, indeed, with greater determination and unity, the work for the implementation of the decisions of the 8th Congress of the Party.

The UDB and the CIA were left biting their fingers. The foreign news agencies related the fact as we had given it, that Mehmet Shehu «committed suicide in a nervous crisis». Here and there some comment secretly paid for by the Yugoslavs was made. However, even the Yugoslavs were unable to exploit this act in their official press apart from charging a student's newspaper in Zagreb to write about the «drama» which had occurred at the meeting of the Albanian leadership (according to the version which the UDB had planned). According to this newspaper, «...Mehmet Shehu fired some shots with a Chinese revolver of this or that type and calibre (!), but Enver Hoxha's comrades killed him. The fate of Enver Hoxha is not known...»

A scenario modelled on westerns with gunfights which occurred in the saloons at the time! But what could they do? This is what they wanted! But their trump card, the super-agent of the CIA and the UDB in Albania, was thrown away for no advantage.

Albania has always supported Kosova and the population of other Albanian regions of Yugoslavia in their legitimate rights, but Kosova, all the Albanians who rose in demonstrations, do not realize what colossal assistance they gave Albania by forcing the Yugoslav UDB to play its trump card and destroy its last «great hope» of overthrowing the Marxist-Leninist leadership in Albania, which had continually unmasked and was relentlessly unmasking the Titoite betrayal, self-administration, non-alignment, this filthy agency of American and British imperialism, of international reaction, of social-democracy and whoever else you like.

Together with Mehmet Shehu, the agencies of the imperialists, social-imperialists and others, like the Yugoslav UDB, received a blow which they will feel for a long time. [629] Their network of agents which had Mehmet Shehu in the centre was uncovered thread by thread, attacked in all its joints and connections, and everything which had to do with this terrible network of long-standing secret agents and conspirators is now in our hands.

Here I must point out that the dangerous plot of Mehmet Shehu, just as other plotters and plotting groups before it, were discovered through the strength and vigilance of the Party and its leadership and none by the State Security. Why? Because, as is known, Koçi Xoxe, a notorious agent of Tito-Rankovic, who was condemned as such for crimes which have been dealt with in detail in this book, was minister of the internal affairs until 1948. Then, he was succeeded by Mehmet Shehu to be followed later by Kadri Hazbiu and more recently, by Feçor Shehu. Unfortunately for the people and the Party none of them was suspected to be an agent, while the three of them, just like Koçi Xoxe, were active agents, mainly of the Yugoslav UDB, who covered up the dirty linen and crimes of one another and some of their collaborators around them, and for almost four decades kept hidden from the Party all information about the espionage activity of one another. None of these plotters, Mehmet Shehu included, openly opposed the line of the Party, because they were afraid of the Party, its unity and the Party-people unity. The uncovering of all these plots, especially the criminal plot of Mehmet Shehu, as well as the information and documents now in the hands of the Party, some of which have been dealt with in these notes, go to prove that Mehmet Shehu and his collaborators acted simply as agents behind the back of the Party and its leadership, not as open opponents of the line or policy of the Party, but as plotters in the service of foreign secret services. Their mission was to act and plot secretly so as to change the sound situation in Albania, to overthrow the people's state power and clear the way for their foreign patrons, who for more than 40 years, not to go even further back, have always hatched up sinister plans and have had criminal aims, to violate the independence [630] of Albania, to deprive the Albanian people of their freedom and rights won at the expense of so much blood and sweat.

After the final traumatic blow we dealt them, the foreign secret services, and the Titoite UDB among them, in their rage and despair turned to forms and methods which we had long experience of and from which they themselves had never seen any good: they tried to feel our pulse and shake us through a group of hired mercenaries and bandits! Apparently, they forgot what «victories» they had scored with the saboteurs and criminals they had sent us in the first years after Liberation! But we, too, were quick to riposte to them: if in the 50's there were cases when we needed even 4-5 days, and at times even more, to detect and wipe out their bands of saboteurs now we needed no more than 5 hours to discover and wipe out the terrorist band of Xhevdet Mustafa, which was sent by the UDB. This ought to serve as a lesson to the enemies of Albania abroad, that such bands of criminals, large or small, from the East or the West, will be wiped out mercilessly by a people who are all armed and on guard. This is what has occurred and always will occur with any one who dares to carry out the adventurous orders of imperialists and revisionists! We are well aware that even after this the foreign secret services, and together with them the UDB, will not sit idle. However, they will never catch us asleep. We will never be lacking in vigilance.

Let everyone understand clearly: the walls of our fortress are of unshakeable granite rock.

This is in general outline the history of our relations with the CPY and the revisionist Yugoslav state: on their part, it is a history of interference and traps, of ceaseless plots to damage our Party and socialist state, while, on our part, it is a history of just and consistent struggle by our Party and people determined never to fall for any of their traps and plots, to uncover and foil them before they cause us serious harm. For socialist Albania to develop and march forward we [631] defined and consistently followed the road which seemed to us to be the most correct one — the road which is based on the teachings of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin, and which has always fulfilled the loftiest aspirations and desires of our brave, hard-working and revolutionary people. This has been and is the road of the constant consolidation of the leading role of the Party and of the active participation of the masses in all the life of the country, of the defence of the independence of the Homeland, of the deepening of the all-round revolution in all fields, of the gradual and constant raising of the well-being of the masses, etc. All along this time, our numerous enemies, and the Yugoslav Titoites in particular, resorted to all means of pressure to swerve us from this course, sometimes through threats, sometimes «pitying us» or accusing us of being «on a wrong», «dogmatic», «Stalinist road», etc., etc.

We never listened to this «advice» or «admonishments» of the enemies, but followed consistently the road we had mapped out, conscious of its correctness. Only time was to prove and our people were to judge whether we had gone in the right or wrong direction. And tune, the reality, has long proved and continues to prove with the utmost clarity who was right and who was wrong.

The so much advertised creature of Tito — the «self-administrative» Yugoslavia of «specific socialism», has been totally engulfed by the gravest crisis in its history and is now in a very grave situation with no way out.

The Yugoslav system has been reduced to bad shape, the development of events has torn down all masks and dispelled all illusions. The external pompous appearances, the misleading advertisements of a «well-being such as can be found in no other place» (!), of a «Yugoslavia of freedom and abundance» (!) have left the place to all-round crisis, poverty and growing unemployment, galloping inflation, and increasing shortages of even the most essential goods and articles of broad consumption, etc.

Just as they did with Tito in his last breath, the im- [632] perialists and social-imperialists are doing their utmost to give the Yugoslav system a new lease of life, to keep it alive, although this system is wholly gangrened. No blood transfusion, either from Washington, Moscow or whatever international bank or fund, can save it. This is the logical end of all revisionist theory and practice. The imperialist and social-imperialist creditors take the money from their safes, not because they ache to help the peoples of Yugoslavia out of their misery, but because they want to protect their political and economic interest in Yugoslavia, to expand or consolidate the domains Tito has long ago sold them in return for the credits he has received from them. But if for a period of time it seemed as if Yugoslavia was to gain in this dangerous game, now the time has come for Yugoslavia to put itself up for auction to the imperialists and social-imperialists. A first-class borrower, shaken to its very foundations in all respects, with no clear perspective, without the necessary means and forces to find the road of salvation — such is the present-day Titoite self-administrative Yugoslavia.

We cannot watch without concern this extremely grave and dangerous situation, not only for the fraternal peoples of Yugoslavia, but also for peace and security in the Balkans and beyond the Balkans. We have never wished those peoples ill, on the contrary we have always been for good neighbourly relations with them. In vain Tito, and company accused us — and his present-day successors follow him in this, of creating turbulent situations and interfering in their internal affairs. No, the evil seed is in their midst, they have planted and tended it to grow with their own hands, so let them find it and fight it there where they have it.

Quite the opposite is the case with our country, with our course of the construction of socialism. Consistently applying the Marxist-Leninist principles in the construction and leadership of the entire life of the country, socialist Albania has marched with sure steps ahead, without holding its hand out to anyone. We have come up against many difficulties [633] and obstacles, have grappled with them fearlessly, have been fully aware of and accepted privations and sacrifices, while always, like a thrifty family, going by the principle of building and enjoying what we build, not only for ourselves and just for today but going about it in such a way that our life and that of the new generations become ever better and at the same time, the future, the life of the coming generations, be ever happier, richer and more secure. Our wonderful people have understood the road the Party has shown them, and aware of it, have mobilized all their mental and physical energies to turn the teachings and directives of the Party into reality. Every generation in our country is fighting and working so as to bequeathe to the future generations an ever stronger Albania, an Albania permanently free and independent, with a beautiful present and with clear and brilliant perspectives.

So, with the Party at the head, having its Marxist-Leninist line as our guiding compass, we will always go on working vigilantly, further tempering unity, marching ahead, with the Party and people united as one, so as to keep the name of our heroic Party always honoured, to raise the prestige of socialist Albania ever higher, to preserve the sacred independence of our Homeland intact. This has been and remains the lofty mission of our Party of Labour. To this mission, to the good of the people and socialism, we have devoted and will devote all our life, all our forces and energies.