V. I.   Lenin

A Tactical Platform for the Unity Congress of the R.S.D.L.P.

Draft Resolutions for the Unity Congress of the R.S.D.L.P.


The eleven resolutions herewith submitted to the reader have been drawn up by a group consisting of the former editors of, and contributors to, Proletary, and of several Party members engaged in practical work, who all share the same views. These are not finished resolutions, but rough drafts, the object of which is to give as complete an idea as possible of the sum-total of views on tactics held by a certain section of the Party, and to facilitate the systematic dis cussion that is now being started in all our Party circles and organisations on the invitation of the Joint Central Committee.

The resolutions on tactics fit in with the Congress agenda[2] that was proposed in the leaflet of the Joint Central Commit tee. But members of the Party are by no means obliged to confine themselves to this agenda. With a view to making a complete exposition of all opinions on tactics, we felt bound to add two questions that do not appear in the agenda proposed by the Joint Central Committee, namely, “The present stage of the democratic revolution” and “The class tasks of the proletariat in the present stage of the democratic revolution”. Unless these questions are cleared up, the more specific questions of tactics cannot be discussed. We there fore propose that the Congress should include in its agenda the following general question: “The present stage of the democratic revolution and the class tasks of the proletariat”.

As for the agrarian programme, and the attitude to be adopted towards the peasant movement, a special pamphlet is needed.[1] Moreover, the Joint Central Committee has ap pointed a special committee to draw up a report on this question[3] for the Congress.

In publishing these rough drafts, we invite all Party members to discuss, amend and supplement them. Written re ports and drafts may be sent through our Party organisations to the St. Petersburg Committee of the R.S.D.L.P. to be delivered to the group which drew up the resolutions.


The Present Stage of the Democratic Revolution


(1) with the wholesale destruction of productive forces and the unprecedented impoverishment of the people, the economic and financial crisis that Russia is experiencing, far from subsiding, is spreading and becoming more acute, causing frightful unemployment in the towns and famine in the countryside;

(2) although the big capitalist and landlord class, frightened by the independent revolutionary activity of the people who are menacing its privileges and predatory interests, is turning sharply away from opposition towards a deal with the autocracy, with the object of suppressing the revolution, the demands for real political liberty and social and economic reforms are gaining ground and becoming stronger among new strata of the petty bourgeoisie and the peasantry;

(3) the present reactionary government, striving in effect to preserve the old autocracy, trampling upon all the liberties it has proclaimed, granting only a consultative voice to the upper strata of the propertied classes, offering a gross travesty of popular representation, subjecting the whole country to a regime of military repression, savage brutalities and mass executions, and intensifying police and administrative tyranny to an unprecedented degree, is thereby causing unrest and discontent among broad sections of the bourgeoisie, arousing the resentment and indignation of the masses of the proletariat and peasantry, and paving the way for a new, wider and more acute political crisis;

(4) the course of events at the end, of 19O5—mass strikes in the towns, unrest in the countryside and the armed uprising in December, produced by the desire to defend the liberties obtained by the people and taken away from them by the government, and the subsequent ruthless military suppression of the emancipation movement—has revealed the, futility of   constitutional illusions, and has opened the eyes of the broad masses of the people to the harmfulness of such illusions in a period when the struggle for freedom has reached the intensity of open civil war;

We are of the opinion, and propose that the Congress should agree:

(1) that the democratic revolution in Russia, far from subsiding, is on the eve of a new upswing, and that the present period of comparative lull must be regarded, not as the defeat of the forces of revolution, but as a period of accumulation of revolutionary energy, assimilation of the political experience of preceding stages, enlistment of new strata of the people in the movement and, consequently, of preparation for a new and mightier revolutionary onslaught;

(2) that the main form of the emancipation movement at the present time is not legal struggle on a quasi-constitutional basis, but the direct revolutionary movement of broad masses of the people, breaking the police and semi-feudal laws, making revolutionary law, and destroying by force the instruments for the oppression of the people;

(3) that the interests of the proletariat, as the foremost class in modern society, demand that a relentless struggle be waged against the constitutional illusions which the liberal-monarchist bourgeoisie (including the Constitutional-Democratic Party) is spreading in order to cover up its narrow class interests and which, in a period of civil war, produce the most corrupting effect upon the political consciousness of the people.


[1] See pp. 165-95 of this volume.—Ed.

[2] The reference is to the leaflet “To the Party”, issued by the Joint C. C. R.S.D.L.P. in February 1906. It dealt with questions relating to the convocation of the Fourth (Unity) Congress.

[3] In view of differences over the agrarian question, which became particularly marked on the eve of the Fourth (Unity) Congress of the R.S.D.L.P., the Joint Central Committee appointed a special committee including Lenin to present the issue to the Congress. The committee reduced all the different views on the agrarian question that had found expression among the Social-Democrats to four basic types of draft and submitted them to the Congress. Most of the committee members adopted the point of view of Lenin, whose draft was therefore submitted to the Congress as that of the committee majority. The draft was approved together with the tactical platform in March 1906, at the Bolshevik meetings preceding the Congress.

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