To Comrades Kamenev, Zinoviev, Ryazanov and Larin
Once before, the Central Committee delivered an ultima—turn to the leading exponents of your policy (Kamenev and Zinoviev), demanding complete subordination to the Central Committee’s line and decisions, and renunciation of efforts to sabotage its work and of all subversive activity. See more
By leaving the Central Committee, but remaining in the Party, the exponents of your policy undertook to abide by Central Committee decisions. Actually, however, you have not confined yourselves to criticism within the Party, but have brought confusion into the ranks of the fighters- in an uprising which is still going on, and continue, in violation of Party discipline, to frustrate Central Committee decisions and hamper its work outside the Party, in the Soviets, the municipal bodies, the trade unions, etc.
In view of this, the Central Committee is forced to restate its ultimatum and to request that you immediately pledge yourselves in writing either to abide by Central Committee decisions and to conduct its policy in all your statements, or to withdraw from all Party activity in public and resign from all responsible posts in the working-class movement until the next Party congress.
Refusal to pledge yourselves to either course will make it imperative for the Central Committee to consider the question of your immediate expulsion from the Party.
We've received the message that the Provisional Government has been arrested at the Winter Palace - everyone but Kerensky, who had managed to run away.
An unofficial session of the Central Committee of the Russian Social Democratic Workers Party (Bolsheviks) is opened by Trotsky. 11 people are present, including Lev Kamenev and Felix Dzerzhinsky.
Lev Kamenev suggests banning all Central Committee members from leaving Smolny unless expressly allowed otherwise. The suggestion is passed unanimously.
In view of the intensified discussion about the question of an armed action, Comrade Zinoviev and I have written to our main party organizations in Petrograd, Moscow and Finland, emphatically opposing the idea that our party should engage in any kind of armed action in the immediate future. See more
I have to say that I am unaware of any party decision to undertake an armed action of any sort on any given day.
The day of the uprising needs to be efficiently chosen. They say that we need to wait for an attack by the government, but we have to understand what can be construed as an attack. See more
An increase of bread prices, a dispatch of Cossacks to the Donetsk region, etc—all this is an attack. How long should we wait if there is no military attack? What Kamenev and Zinoviev are suggesting, objectively, allows the counter-revolution to prepare and to organise. We will retreat constantly and will lose the revolution. Why can’t we provide ourselves with a possibility of choosing the day of the revolt, so as not to give counter-revolution an opportunity to organise?
In the corridors of Smolny, I spoke with Kamenev, a little man with a reddish pointed beard and Gallic gestures. He was not at all sure that enough delegates would come. See more
“If there is a Congress,” he said, “it will represent the overwhelming sentiment of the people. If the majority is Bolshevik, as I think it will be, we shall demand that the power be given to the Soviets, and the Provisional Government must resign.”
Volodarsky, a tall, pale youth with glasses and a bad complexion, was more definite. “The ‘Lieber-DansA nickname given to the Mensheviks, comprised out of the last names of their leaders: Lieber and Dan.’ and the other compromisers are sabotaging the Congress. If they succeed in preventing its meeting,—well, then we are realists enough not to depend on that!”
Savinkov thinks that Kerensky is honest, but says that Trotsky (Bronstein) and Kamenev (Rosenfeldt) could be bought. Lenin and Kollontai are fanatics See more
. Filonenko said that up till last night he would have said that Kerenski was honest, but his confession yesterday that he had set a trap for KornilovCommander in Chief of the Petrograd command - from 18 March 1917 on September 8th by pretending that Lvov was at the telegraph apparatus made him ready to believe anything of him.
The Russians, like ourselves, during the war were inclined to attribute the result of their own shortcomings to the machinations of the enemy. There is no evidence that German intrigue had anything to do with the Kornilov affair. It seems clear from the evidence available that Kornilov was led by his conversations with Lvov, whom he imagined to be a friend of Kerenski, and with Savinkov, whom he knew to be Kerenski’s deputy in the Ministry of War, into the belief that Kerensky would support him in carrying out the plan which he and every officer of experience knew to be the only chance of restoring discipline in the army. Kerenski’s telegram ordering his resignation came as a bolt from the blue on September 9th, and he believed that in the interests of the country and the army he had no choice but to refuse.
Officer elements who surrounded Kornilov, and who naturally hated Kerenski, failed to understand that the co-operation of the Prime Minister was essential. They exaggerated to a criminal degree the strength of the forces at their disposal.
It is true that the Petrograd Soviet had not ordered a demonstration, but the Central Committee of the Bolshevik party was considering the question of insurrection. All night long the 23d they met. There were present all the party intellectuals, the leaders—and delegates of the Petrograd workers and garrison. Alone of the intellectuals Lenin and Trotsky stood for insurrection. Even the military men opposed it. A vote was taken. Insurrection was defeated! See more
Then arose a rough workman, his face convulsed with rage. “I speak for the Petrograd proletariat,” he said, harshly. “We are in favour of insurrection. Have it your own way, but I tell you now that if you allow the Soviets to be destroyed, we’re through with you!” Some soldiers joined him. And after that they voted again—insurrection won...
However, the right wing of the Bolsheviki, led by Ryazanov, Kamenev and Zinoviev, continued to campaign against an armed rising.
If I am to be bumped off, I ask you to publish my notebook “Marxism and the State” (which got left behind in Stockholm). It is bound and with a blue cover.
It was a moment of hesitation for Ilich. He laid out the arguments for the necessity of going to court. “Grigory and I have decided to go to court. Go and let Kamenev know”, Ilich said to me. At this moment Kamenev was in a nearby flat. I was hurrying out the door when Vladimir Ilich stopped me: “Let us say our farewells; it may be that we will not see each other again”. See more
We embraced. I went to Kamenev and gave him Vladimir Ilich’s instructions. In the evening comrade Stalin and others persuaded Ilich not to go to court and by so doing saved his life. In the evening our flat we were searched, but only in our room. The search was performed by some kind of colonel and another military type in an overcoat with a white inner lining. They took a few notes from the the desk, together with some of my documents. They asked whether I knew where Ilich was, from which I concluded that he had not presented himself to the authorities.
The Congress of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies recently adjourned at the Cadets’ College has only deepened my pessimism. The meeting began with a discussion of the Dacha Durnovo. Pereverzev, Liber, Kamenev, Tsereteli with his histrionics, and Lunacharsky, all made speeches, the latter receiving reproaches from the Asiatic Chkheidze for addressing the congress without the reverence apparently accorded it. See more
They all spoke very coherently, “convinced and convincing”, with calm and even business-like temper. Yet, essentially, despite the great superfluity of fine words, I left the assembly without having formed the slightest impression. Lord knows, an audience is correct in greeting every speech with an identically rousing storm of ovation, even if this speech stands in stark contradiction to its predecessor, and even if this predecessor was met by the very same ovation. The mood, I should note, in the hall was decidedly moderate and calm. I can see now that there is an audience capable of standing through one of Lenin’s speeches.
We put our stakes only on the development of a worldwide proletarian revolution; we have no prospect of an amicable concord with Western European imperialism, nor of one with the German General Staff...
There’s nothing but global proletarian revolution on our horizon.