The revolution has just begun, it will last for years, counter-revolution is possible, and reactionary ideas and moods inevitably rise. We won not because we are a force, but because the government was weak. What is happening here is facing great dangers. We have committed a political revolution and mist consolidate our gain - that is the meaning of the event and that is the task of the moment.
Arrived in Kiev at 1o’clock. How things have changed! At the station there is no one, only on the platform civilians with red bows. Disgusting!
The autocratic tsarist power, which distorted our church life, fell, and the Church was freed from this idol. But the “kingdom of Caesar” continues to exist in new forms. An idol can be created from democracy, from socialism, from the people themselves, and the church life can fall into slavery to these new idols. The free Church must be free not only from the old state, the kingdom of the autocracy. but also from the new state, from the kingdom of democracy.
The king and His Majesty's government would be happy to oblige the request of the Provisional Government and to offer the emperor and his family asylum in England, of which they hope, their majesties will make use for the duration of the war. In case this offer is accepted the Russian government of course will be obliged to allocate the necessary funds for their living expenses.
We believe that the Russian government will do everything necessary to provide for the protection of the imperial family. If something terrible were to happen to the family, then the government would be discredited in the eyes of the civilised world.
Last night Alexeieff sent for me and we had a long talk. He is gravely anxious as to what may happen to the Emperor and Empress, who are now, he tells me, under close arrest at Tsarskoye Selo.
He is most anxious that both should be got out of the country to some haven of refuge.
Janin, de Ryckel and I have done what we can to help, having talked it all over, though our efforts to accompany the Emperor to Tsarskoye Selo were snubbed.
Major-General John Headlam, who had been on an ‘artillery adviser’ trip, turned up, and gave me a most interesting account of what he had seen of the feeling among the troops he saw.
Many of the officers had the unfortunate and totally false impression that the Court from the top to bottom was pro-German. At the same time no anti-dynastic sentiment was expressed. The Grand Duke Michael’s appointment was welcomed, and a prospect of the Tsarevitch eventually succeeding was welcomed. The appointment of the Grand Duke Nicholas as C.-in-C. was very popular. The impression was that German intrigues would be effectually checked, and that the change might lead to representative government.
Over and over again he heard the expression: ‘Now we shall have responsible ministers’.
Kieff, through which he had passed, was a mixture of quiet and hysteria.
A Russian officer whom he knew and had just arrived from Petrograd gave him his impressions as follows: -
‘The real danger of the situation lies in the extreme wing of the Labour party, who are nothing but anarchists and terrorists. They are only a small percentage, perhaps 15 per cent., but they exert great influence. These men care nothing for consequences so long as they can spread their own doctrines. They are ready to end the war for this.
The cry is already to kill Rodzianko, who, the anarchists say, is now only thinking of making himself first President of the Republic, and Kerenski, their own socialist representative in the Government, because he is too moderate, and now that he has become a minister does not want to do more.
The Government dare not tackle this anarchist element because they have succeeded in obtaining the support of the soldiers, and the Union is now called the Union of Workers and Soldiers.
The soldiers in question are those in the depots at Petrograd, not 2 per cent. of whom are old soldiers and have been service – mostly youth of 18 to 19. During the first two or three days they looted the food and drink shops, going to sleep on the spot when they got drunk. Now when spoken to they don’t know what they are out for. They are already saying they have done their work in dethroning the Emperor, and demand to be given pensions and let go.
It is very important to avoid letting the anarchist wing get hold of the real army. The delegates who have been sent from the Government will do no harm - they have gone officially and work through the commanders. The danger lies in secret emissaries from the extremists inciting mutiny.
I slept well. Bonda, Romei, Marcengo, Lontkevich and I took a walk for about an hour. The weather was mild, but all day it had been snowing. After tea I began unpacking things. I had dinner with Alix and played bezik with her.