A new cabinet has finally been formed: Konovalov at Trade, Kuzma Gvozdev at Labour, Malyantovich at Justice, Neverovsky at Transport, Smirnoff as State Controler, Bernatsky at Finance, Kishkin as Social Minister, Tretyakov as Chair of the Economic Council, Salazkin at Education, Prokopovich at Supply. See more
The other ministries have remained unchanged, except for Agriculture, which remains unfilled. Sessions of the “Democratic Council” were held before the “Pre-parliament”, with much the same results as have been seen at all such gatherings: a struggle between the SRs and the Social Democrats to see who can produce the most explosive rhetoric. Tsereteli and Breshko-Breshkovskaya are constantly trying to consolidate the Bolsheviks, yet it seems nothing can come of this. The Bolsheviks have got their people in wherever you look; they are transitioning from word to action.
The government has published a new declaration. The session of the Constituent Assembly will begin right on time. Together with the allies, the government will shortly attend a conference of the allied nations, moreover, apart from the government officials there will also be a person “entrusted by democratic organizations” (Lenin, perhaps?). Kerensky has left for Command together with Ministers of the Military and the Navy.
The Executive Committee (Chkheidze , Skobelev, Tsereteli and others) left in the days following the adoption of the Bolshevik revolution. Yesterday, a re-election was held… and failed. The winners – Trotsky, Kamenev, Lunacharsky, Nahamkes – are beside themselves in triumph. Their case is working out. “We’ve turned over a new leaf”. Of course…
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.
It’s Trinity Day. Every decent restaurant is closed. I had a horrible dinner and went to see Filippov for hot chocolate. Suddenly someone calls me. -– It’s Kamenev! Purely by chance. A little of this, a little of that. "Let's go to the Soviet." Today, Minister Kerensky is giving speech and trying to defend himself from the leftwing "attacks." So I went. See more
To describe the halls of the Mariinsky Theater to you, filled with soldiers and workers, a scene covered with curtains in huge colors, the Presidium and the Socialist ministers at the red table, I will not. He is Kerensky, young and slender, with khaki and high boots. Ovation. He speaks in short, hoarse phrases, sincerely, often - dexterously, mostly with a noble emptiness.
It was decided to open the debate at 5 minutes each speaker. Chkheidze states: "Comrade Lunacharsky is in the hall, according to my information, he is one of the very definite critics of the government." He asks for the words. " My 10 minutes I used well, without losing a single word, I destroyed all the arguments of Kerensky. He looked at me while I spoke, squinting, and as if measuring the enemy.
Poor fellow! Theatrical and hysterical, not a sincere democrat, he will probably break his neck in half position. For the bourgeoisie, he and his still huge popularity - the screen and the last position of her defense. It is the last weapon of the imperialists.
Rabochaya Gazeta gloats and crows over the recent resolution of the Central Committee which has revealed certain disagreements within our Party. The Mensheviks may gloat and crow as much as they like. It does not worry us in the least. The Mensheviks have no organisation. Chkheidze and Tsereteli are one thing—they are ministers without portfolios; the Organising Committee is another thing—they are Social-Democrats without a policy; the “defencists” are a third thing—they support Plekhanov. See more
Martov is a fourth thing—he will not support the loan. Small wonder that people who have neither an organisation nor a party crow and caper light-heartedly at discovering a fault in somebody else’s organisation. We have no reason to fear the truth. Yes, comrade workers, the crisis has revealed certain shortcomings in our organisation. We must set to work to correct them!
Quite practically, it seems, will arise the question of returning to Russia. From all sides this question rises. In Bern, Zinoviev and I discussed the prospects with others. They learned from Temps that Gorky has responded to the request of the Volunteer, Agafonov and others with a telegram: revenez tous, to which they responded with a telegram to Kerensky and Chkheidze to “arrange all measures” for transportation. And today a telegram from St.Petersburg has arrives in Temps: “The bankers handed Kerensky 5 million francs collected by them for organising the transportation of emigrants.” I begin to think that my idea is not utopia: to charter a streamer, and from England to be delivered under the escort of a Russian torpedo boat, which more or less guarantees against an attack.
Pressured to do so by the Executive Committee, the Provisional Government has refused to allow Nicholas Romanov to leave for England without the express consent of the Executive Committee. For the moment, he is being kept at Tsarskoe Selo. The Provisional Government and Justice Minister Kerensky guarantee that he won’t be going anywhere. In the future, the question of Nicholas Romanov will be resolved in agreement with the Executive Committee.
Be careful about blocs with the Nachalo people: we are against rapprochement with other parties, are for warning the workers against Chkheidze. Essential! Chkheidze is clearly wobbling: cf. how he is being praised in the Temps of March 22 and in many other papers. We are for the C.C. in Russia, for Pravda, for our Party, for a proletarian militia preparing the way for peace and socialism.
The old Government had ceased to exist, and all its members, with the exception of Pokrowski and of the Minister of Marine, Admiral Grigorowich, had been arrested. By the evening the whole garrison, as well as all the troops which had arrived from Tsarskoe and the neighbouring districts, had gone over to the Duma, while many officers had also offered their services. So far as Petrograd was concerned, the revolution was already an accomplished fact; but the situation was beset with colossal difficulties. The workmen were armed, numbers of released criminals were at large, in many regiments the soldiers were without officers, while in the Duma a sharp struggle was proceeding between the executive committee and the newly formed Soviet. See more
The Duma had been the rallying point of the troops who had achieved the revolution. Its leaders were for the most part Monarchists and advocates of a war to a victorious finish. But at the critical moment they failed to assert themselves, and allowed the Democrats, who were pronounced Republicans, with a large percentage of pacifists, to forestall them and to assume control over the troops. They had further tolerated the session in one of their own assembly rooms of a rival body, the Soviet, that, without any legal status, had constituted itself the representative council of the workmen and soldiers. If only there had been among its members a real leader of men, capable of profiting by the first natural move of the insurgent troops towards the Duma, to rally them round that assembly as the only legally constituted organ m the country, the Russian revolution might have had a happier sequel. But no such leader arose, and, while the Duma was still deliberating and seeking for a policy, the Democrats, who knew their own minds, acted. Once assured of the support of the troops, Cheidze, their leader, was, as he told a British officer, master of the situation.
Disregard of streets is a feature of government and many among us. But the street has already spoken, gentlemen, and this street is now to be reckoned with.