I am an active member of the Petrograd insane asylum. I take part in the uprisings and the constant gunfire—like a hare takes part in the hunt. Lunacharskys, Trotskys, Lenins abound, Soviets, ministries, crises. And so many idiots!
I found out that the Provisional Government decided to transport the Royal family. Destination is kept in a secret. We all hope it will be Crimea.
Such enjoyable weather. Not windy. We took a good walk. During the day we worked near the small path and sawed up three trees. I read the book, The Maritime Idea in the Russian Land by Lt. Kvashnin-Samarin.
We must clearly and decidedly state that those who advised comrades Lenin and Zinovyev not to be arrested did right. We must clearly respond to the harassment of the bourgeois press that would unnerve our laborers. Harassment against Lenin and Zinovyev is harassment against us, against the party, against revolutionary democracy. See more
We must make clear to our comrades that we do not trust the Provisional Government and the bourgeoisie, that we will not give up Lenin and Zinovyev until justice shines victorious, that is, until this shameful tribunal ends. In the name of the congress, we must applaud the actions of comrades Lenin and Zinovyev.
I turn to numbers to illustrate the growth of our organization. 78 organizations were represented at our April conference by 80,000 party members. At the present moment, we encompass 162 organizations and 200,000 party members. See more
Our strength is spread among the regions as follows: Moscow and its environments: approximately 50,000, though several organizations have gone unrepresented here; Petrograd accounts for approximately 41,000 members, and of these there are 36,000 in the PK, 4,000 in the inter-regional organization, and around 1,000 in the military organization.
The Root Mission, excepting Charles R. Crane, have arrived and I had a long interview with them yesterday preceded by one in the morning with Mr. Root alone. I am astounded at their optimism. I cannot see upon what it is founded. See more
When I expressed doubts as to Keresnky’s personal force and ability to carry through his plans in view of the strong opposition developing against him, they assured me that everything would come out all right and that Russia would continue the war against the Central Powers with even greater vigor than under the Czar.
I hope they are right and I presume they know more about it than I do, and yet in spite of what they say I am very sceptical about Kerensky. He compromises too much with the radical element of the Revolution.
From the first I have felt that the attempt being made to harmonize the radicals and moderates in Russia would be a failure, but I confess that the confident tone of Mr. Root and his colleagues has shaken, though it has not removed, my doubts.
The French Revolution is the great example of the complete overthrow of a social system and the establishment of a new one. That revolution started off moderately with an attempt to reform the old system by introducing a measure of popular government. Gradually the radical revolutionists who sought to do away with the old ideas gained ground until they finally developed the Jacobin despotism which through fanaticism and violence produced the Terror, and France sank into a hideous state of disorder. It was not until the atrocities of Robespierre’s rule became unendurable that France rose in its might against the butchers and restored order and protected personal rights.
Now I believe that is the normal process and that Russia in revolution will go through a similar evolution. First, Moderation; second, Terrorism; third, Revolt against the New Tyranny and restoration of order by arbitrary military power. In my judgement the demoralized state of affairs will grow worse and worse until some dominant personality arises to end it all.
I may be all wrong about this. I hope I am. Mr. Root and his confreres may be entirely right. I hope they are. The present government may develop into a constitutional democratic government; it may become stronger, suppress radicalism, and make society safe from lawlessness. Yet the logic of events in my opinion does not warrant such hopes.
I naturally hesitate to set my judgement against so experienced and wise a statesman as Elihu Root, especially after he has been on the ground and has been in contact with the forces at work in Russia, but even taking his statements as accurate I cannot agree in the conclusions which he reached.
Nevertheless, as long as there is a chance that he is right and I am wrong, I feel that we should do all that we can to strengthen morally and materially the existing government. If Mr. Root is wrong, nothing that we can do will stay the current which is toward a period of disorder and national impotency. All our efforts will amount to nothing; they will simply be chips swept along by the tide to be swallowed up in the calamity which seems to be in store for Russia.
The Revolution has succeeded, but Russia may pay for it with the loss of her national strength, if not with the loss of her national life. I think that our policy should be based on the hypothesis that Russia will go from bad to worse; and we should therefore prepare for the time when Russia will no longer be a military factor in the war. No other course is safe.
I am in a quandary about the views of the Root Mission, but I cannot rely upon them without doing violence to my better judgement.
General Manikovski, who was in charge of the supply departments, said that he had not been able to see his Minister for two months. He said : “Sometimes I want to put a bullet into my own head, and sometimes into somebody else’s.” His subordinate, the Chief of the Military Technical Department, said that there was no real work being done in his office. See more
Officers in the Artillery Department, when asked how they came to have so much time to spare, explained that productive work had fallen generally 50 per cent, in Russia since the Revolution, and they were doing their best to follow the times!
General Manikovski spoke of the other two Assistant Ministers of War, General Yakubovich and Prince Tumanov, as his “ nursery.” Other officers labelled them “ carrierists.” Both agreed with officers who urged strong measures to save the situation, but both probably also agreed with Kerenski when he preached caution.