Proletary, No. 15, September 5 (August 23), 1905.
Published according to the text in Proletary.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1972, Moscow, Volume 9, page 229.
Translated: The Late Abraham Fineberg and Julius Katzer
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
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From the Editorial Board. Rudolf Martin’s book The Future of Russia and Japan, which recently appeared in Berlin, is splendid confirmation of the conclusions drawn by the author of this article. We have as yet had no opportunity to examine this book, and shall, therefore, merely take note of its main arguments as reported in the foreign press. The author’s approach to the matter is one of pure scholarship and devoid of any political sympathies. A statistician by profession, he has made a thorough study of Russia’s financial standing and arrives at the conclusion that a declaration of insolvency is inevitable, whether the war goes on or whether peace is concluded. Russian agriculture is in a state of complete decline, a capital of 50 thou sand million rubles being required to put it on its feet again. Over the next ten years the budget deficit will amount to at least 300 million rubles annually. Russia’s national debt, estimated by the author at approximately eight thousand million rubles today, will reach 12 thousand million rubles in five years’ time. There is nothing with which to pay the interest on the loans because nobody will now give Russia any money. The parallel between the Russia of 1905 and the France of Louis XVI is simply amazing. Rudolf Martin strongly advises Germany to get all Russian loans off her hands at the earliest opportunity (in America, if possible)—loans in which 1,500 million rubles’ worth of German money has been invested. The European bourgeoisie is hurrying to escape, foreseeing the inevitability of a Russian collapse.