Happy New Year, my darling! Write to me about yourself.
The Menshevik faction proposes that the congress pass a resolution on the need to resolve this crisis peacefully by forming an all-democratic government. To this end, the congress must appoint a delegation to hold discussions with other democratic organisations and all the socialist parties. The Menshevik-Internationalist faction proposes that the work of the congress be suspended until the results of this delegation’s efforts become clear.
Without doubt, there is not one member of the Central Executive Committee who would deny the right of the proletariat to an uprising. But at the present moment, the conditions are not auspicious. And although the Menshevik Internationalists are not against the transfer of power to a democracy, they will, nevertheless, speak out decisively against the methods used by the Bolsheviks to push for this power.
Internationalist Menshevik Julius Martov urges the delegates of the Congress to discuss, first and foremost, the question of peaceful crisis resolution.
At the Pre-parliament session, Julius Martov speaks. The left-wing politicians welcome him with applause, and from the Constitutional Democrats somebody shouts “Foreign minister of the future cabinet!” Martov answers, “I’m short-sighted, and I can’t see if that is the Foreign minister of the future cabinet of Kornilov speaking.”
I found neither in Trotsky’s speech, nor in the speech of Kollontai, nor in the Bolshevik declaration, nor in the resolution that they proposed now, any explanation for the reason why the Bolsheviks need to withdraw from the Pre-Parliament. See more
The Bolsheviks could leave the Pre-Parliament only if they form a new authority by using force. But this is now unthinkable, and we therefore consider the policy of the Bolsheviks meaningless.
They must remember, that the masses are disappointed with the revolution. The policy of the Bolsheviks now acts into the hands of the counter-revolutionaries. The Mensheviks-internationalists did not leave the Pre-Parliament and are not going to leave it. They consider it a duty to remain in it, to illuminate the activity of the census elements from the rostrum. The future will show whose tacts were correct.
In the Tsay-ee-kah three factions immediately appeared. The Bolsheviki demanded that the All-Russian Congress of Soviets be summoned, and that they take over the power. The “centre” Socialist Revolutionaries, led by Tchernov, joined with the Left Socialist Revolutionaries, led by Kamkov and Spiridonova, the Mensheviki Internationalists under Martov, and the “centre” Mensheviki, represented by Bogdanov and Skobeliev, in demanding a purely Socialist Government. Tseretelli, Dan and Lieber, at the head of the right wing Mensheviki, and the right Socialist Revolutionaries under Avksentiev and Gotz, insisted that the propertied classes must be represented in the new Government. See more
Almost immediately the Bolsheviki won a majority in the Petrograd Soviet, and the Soviets of Moscow, Kiev, Odessa and other cities followed suit.
Alarmed, the Mensheviki and Socialist Revolutionaries in control of the Tsay-ee-kah decided that after all they feared the danger of Kornilov less than the danger of Lenin. They revised the plan of representation in the Democratic Conference, admitting more delegates from the Cooperative Societies and other conservative bodies. Even this packed assembly at first voted for a Coalition Government without the Cadets. Only Kerensky’s open threat of resignation, and the alarming cries of the “moderate” Socialists that “the Republic is in danger” persuaded the Conference, by a small majority, to declare in favour of the principle of coalition with the bourgeoisie, and to sanction the establishment of a sort of consultative Parliament, without any legislative power, called the Provisional Council of the Russian Republic.
The situation is hopeless. Never, even in 1915, it was not so bad, but I believe that the Revolution still has more resources.
The situation was tragic and no matter the range of languages we speak, we all see the same way out; revolutionary dictatorship.
Petrograd has become a socialist Mecca, a place of pilgrimage for almost every people from every corner of the globe...Only distant rolls of thunder from the great Russian revolution reached Switzerland. Only yesterday, at the first meeting, and today at the Finland station....hundreds of thousands of members of the European proletariat have come here, to this school of revolution, in order to learn what the peoples of the world should do, what direction their actions should take.
The membership of the Provisional Government is still a conundrum. Born of a popular revolution, it is now made up of people who are as far away from the spirit of revolution and as close to the spirit of a coup d’etat as it as it is possible to imagine. The Minister of War in the Provisional Government, Guchkov, is the former alter ago of Stolypin the “hangman”. The Foreign Minister, Milyukov, is an imperialist who supports continuing the war “to a victorious end”. It is impossible to place one’s trust in any of the generals. See more
There is no support for the revolutionaries either among the regular officers or among the tradesmen. The peasants do not share the idea of internationalism, as the workers do, and are susceptible to the influence of nationalism under the pretext of a defensive war. The internationalists in the army are the worst soldiers. And finally, the Russian internationalist cause has neither a single outstanding leader, nor a single representative in government. Lenin is not sufficiently even-tempered.
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!
This affair with the Bolsheviks has not induced a great deal of upset. It is very clear that even they feel awkward about the whole thing, and realise that they have acted very shabbily in regards to everyone else in particular…