The essay to which we here call the attention of the reader represents an elaboration of an article published abroad in the almanac Communist. In due time, about two years ago, the manuscript was shipped from abroad to Russia. First it was subjected to a raid by the military censor, then it was mistakenly transmitted to the wrong publisher. After the Revolution of February-March, 1917, the manuscript was "found." It was supposed to see the light of day in July, but the intelligence men and the cadets who raided our party printing plant, also took care of my manuscript. Much later it was rescued in a mutilated form; a large and highly valuable introduction by Comrade Lenin, to whom I here pay the debt of deep gratitude, was missing. 1)
Due to the fact that the composition of this work dates back two years, the statistical figures are, naturally, antiquated, especially those relating to the effects of the war.
Unfortunately, I have had no occasion as yet to revise the manuscript and to furnish it with fresh statistical material. I have only re-written the missing pages and added the last chapter, which could not have appeared under the censor's rule.
The manuscript was written at a time when Socialism, crucified by capital and the "Socialist" traitors, was suffering the greatest possible humiliations. Soon after he had sent it to Russia the author had ample time to ponder over revolutionary perspectives in the Swedish king's prison.
This preface is written at a moment when revolutionary Socialism has achieved its greatest victory in Russia.
It is the most ardent wish of the author that this book should soon be transformed from a weapon against imperialism into an historic document relegated to the archives.
November 25, 1917.
1) 1 The manuscript of the introduction, included in the present volume, was subsequently found and first published in the Pravda, January 21, 1927.-Ed.