Letter from Marx to Danielson, London, 19th February 1881

[Marx and Engels: On Colonies, Industrial Monopoly and Working Class Movement, Futura, 1972, 57 p., p. 42]


... In India serious complications, if not a general outbreak, is in store for the British government. What the English take from them annually in the form of rent, dividends for railways useless to the Hindus; pensions for military and civil servicemen, for Afghanistan and other wars, etc., etc. – what they take from them without any equivalent and quite apart from what they appropriate to themselves annually within India – speaking only of the value of the commodities the Indians have gratuitously and annually to send over to England – it amounts to more than the total sum of income of the sixty millions of agricultural and industrial labourers of India! This is a bleeding process, with a vengeance! The famine years are pressing each other and in dimensions till now not yet suspected in Europe! There is an actual conspiracy going on wherein Hindus and Mussulmans co-operate; the British government is aware that something is "brewing," but this shallow people (I mean the governmental men), stultified by their own parliamentary ways of talking and thinking, do not even desire to see clear, to realise the whole extent of the imminent danger! To delude others and by deluding them to delude yourself – this is: parliamentary wisdom in a nutshell! Tant mieux! [18]

[18] So much the betters

MESC p. 336.
MEOC p. 339.
MEOB p. 557.
The complete text can be found online in Marxist Internet Archive, MIA: