V. I.   Lenin



Written: Written December 27, 1902
Published: First published in 1928. Sent from London to St. Petersburg. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1974, Moscow, Volume 34, pages 126-127.
Translated: Clemens Dutt
Transcription\Markup: D. Moros
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive (2005). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.README

December 27

We have received Vlas’s letter. We shall give you what help we can. We have long been aware of your plight and have been thinking of assistance.

But you must immediately and without fail write us an accurate account of the split in St. Petersburg. Answer the following points: 1) Was the Organisation Committee (the summer one) elected by the League of Struggle[2] alone (=committee of intellectuals?) or by the Workers’ Organisation[3] as well? 2) When exactly was it elected? 3) Is there a precise record of its powers (i.e., what it was charged with doing)? 4) Wherein lay the irregularity of its election, according to Bouncer and Co.? 5) Were there delegates from the Workers’ Organisation (two?) in the Organisation Committee and by whom were they elected? 6) From what has Bouncer been chucked out—from the Organisation Committee or the Intellectuals’ Committee or the Workers’ Organisation? 7) What Workers’ Organisation is it that now writes its declarations? A new one? A reorganised one? when? how? 8) Why have you not sent us the September leaflet of the Committee of the Workers’ Organisation? 9) Why have you not issued even a handwritten leaflet against them?—or sent us a counter-declaration? Not one of their moves should be left unanswered. 10) What is this C.C. like now? Is there still an Organisation Committee? Are there workers on your side? Why haven’t they formed a counter-organisation? Why don’t your workers protest against Bouncer workers and their committee?

Send us immediately new, absolutely unused places of rendezvous for visitors. Do not give these (our) rendezvous to anyone else. Seek out beforehand a flat to shelter one person. Take special care to cover up traces of his contacts with the old members (Heron and others), who are probably being shadowed.


[1] Lavrov, V. I.—a Social-Democrat, Iskrist; from November 1902 was stand-in to Y. D. Stasova on the St. Petersburg Committee in case of her arrest. In 1903 was in charge of technical arrangements for the St. Petersburg Committee; conducted correspondence with Iskra. Re: Stasova, see Note 153. __GLOSSARY_LINK_COMMENT__

[2] This refers to the St. Petersburg League of Struggle for the Emancipation of the Working Class organised by Lenin in the autumn of 1895. In December 1895 the tsarist government dealt the League a severe blow by arresting a considerable number of its leading members, Lenin included. The long absence of the League’s founders, who were exiled to Siberia, facilitated the prosecution of an opportunist policy on the part of the “young” members and the Economists, who, from 1897, through the newspaper Rabochaya Mysl, implanted on Russian soil the ideas of trade-unionism and Bernsteinism. In the second half of 1898 control of the League passed to the most outspoken of the Economists-the Rabochaya Mysl adherents. The old surviving members of the League took part in preparing and holding the First Congress of the R.S.D.L.P. In the autumn of 1900 the League of Struggle amalgamated with the St. Petersburg Workers’ Organisation, and was recognised as the St. Petersburg Committee of the R.S.D.L.P. The struggle between the Iskrists and Economists in the St. Petersburg Organisation ended in the summer of 1902 with the St. Petersburg Committee of the R.S.D.L.P. adopting an Iskra stand.

[3] Workers’ Organisation—an organisation of supporters of Economism, which arose in St. Petersburg in the summer of 1900. In the autumn of the same year it amalgamated with the League of Struggle for the Emancipation of the Working Class, and the St. Petersburg Committee of the R.S.D.L.P. was formed, consisting of two parts: the Committee proper, and the Committee of the Workers’ Organisation. With the Iskra trend gaining the ascendancy in the St. Petersburg Social-Democratic organisation (1902) the group of Economist-minded Social-Democrats broke away from the St. Petersburg Committee and again set up an independent Workers’ Organisation, which existed until the beginning of 1904.

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