V. I.   Lenin


To:   A. M. STOPANI[1]

To Tu—ra from Lenin, private

Written: Written November 10, 1904
Published: First published in 1930. Sent from Geneva to Baku. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1974, Moscow, Volume 34, pages 264-265.
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

Dear Comrade,

I was extremely glad to have your letter. Please write punctually every week, even if only a few lines, and make sure that all addresses are usable and that you have reserve addresses for letters and rendezvous. It’s a downright scandal that the adherents of the Majority are so scattered! No common work is possible without regular contact and we have had nothing from you for over six months.

I absolutely and fully agree with everything you write concerning the need to unite the Majority, to rally its committees and prepare for a united congress capable of en forcing the will of the Party workers in Russia. Very close contact is essential for all this, otherwise we shall drift apart and you will know absolutely nothing of our common affairs.

The C.C. has now wholly fused with the Minority and has virtually become part of its secret organisation, the aim of which is to fight against a congress at all costs. The new decisions of the Council plainly falsify both the counting of votes and the will of the committees (supplement to Iskra Nos. 73-74. Have you seen it?). Now we must be prepared for the fact that they will not convene a congress on any account, will not shrink from any violation of the Rules, nor from any further flouting of the Party. They openly jeer at us, saying “where is your strength?” We should indeed be behaving like children if we confined ourselves to faith in a congress, without preparing straight away to counter force by force. For this purpose we must: 1) immediately unite all the Majority committees and set up a Bureau of the Majority Committees (the initiative has already been taken by Odessa+Nikolayev-+-Ekaterinoslav) to combat the Bonapartism of the central bodies; 2) exert every effort to support and extend in every way   the Majority’s publishing house (started here by Bonch-Bruyevich and myself; Bonch-Bruyevich is only the publisher). A group of writers in Russia has already set to work on this and you should immediately begin collecting and sending all kinds of material, correspondence, leaflets, comments, and so on and so forth, especially from workers and about the workers’ movement. Do this without fail and immediately. (If from now on you do not begin to send us an item every week, we shall break off relations with you.)

In the matter of the Bureau, what has been done already is this. The Odessa+Nikolayev+Ekaterinoslav committees took the following decision (quote in full) ...——The 22 answered them as follows ...——[2]

You must try to go to Tiflis as soon as possible and hand over both the one and the other. Let them speedily join. It will, of course, be possible to add members from the Caucasus to the Bureau. And so, let all the committees of the Caucasus immediately give their opinion about the idea of a Bureau, that is to say, write to us and to St. Petersburg (or Riga?) (address..., key...), whether they agree to a Bureau and whether they want changes or additional candidates. For heaven’s sake see to it that this matter of prime importance is dealt With properly, sensibly and quickly.

Some comrades, are demanding a conference of the Majority committees in Russia. We here think this is not only expensive but bureaucratic and ineffectual. But we must press on with might and main. It is not worth while coming together to elect a Bureau; it is much better to reach agreement on this by letter or by a tour made by one or two comrades. When the Bureau speaks out and is joined by Ekaterinoslav+Odessa+Nikolayev+St. Petersburg+Moscow+Riga+the Caucasus, then this Bureau will at once be speaking as the representative of the organised Majority.

And so, for heaven’s sake, make haste and answer speedily.

All the very best.
N. Lenin


[1] Stopani, Alexander Mitrofanovich (1871–1932)—professional revolutionary, joined the revolutionary movement in 1892. At the Second Congress of the R.S.D.L.P. (1903) and after it—a Bolshevik. After the Congress, on the instructions of the C.C., he worked in Yaroslavl, where he organised an illegal printing-plant; left for Baku in the summer of 1904 after the plant was raided by the police; was one of the organisers of the Baku Bolshevik Committee. After the October Socialist Revolution occupied leading Party posts.

[2] The manuscript contains Lenin’s note: “(quote in full)” followed by dots and special marks indicating that the text of the corresponding resolution of the Conference of the Southern Committees was to be quoted here. The text of the resolution was not quoted in the letter, nor was the reply of the “22”.

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