V. I.   Lenin

Letter to the Swiss Workers[2]

Written: Written in July 1912
Published: Hectographed as a separate leaflet in German, August 1912. Translated from the German. Published according to the leaflet text.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, [1975], Moscow, Volume 18, page 245.
Translated: Stepan Apresyan
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive (2004). 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.
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Dear Comrades,

On behalf of the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party, I confirm hereby for the benefit of all the Swiss comrades that the general Conference of this Party, held in January 1912, disclaimed by a special resolution all responsibility for individual Russian groups abroad.

I also confirm that the Central Committee of our Party has so far recognised only one Russian Social-Democratic organisation abroad, namely, the Committee of Organisations Abroad and its Zurich section. I enclose a pamphlet published by the Central Organ of our Party in German, which describes in detail the disorganising behaviour of the petty groups of Russians abroad.[1]

With Party greetings, Lenin (V. Ulyanov)

Representative of the Russian Social-Democratic Party in the International Socialist Bureau.[3]


[1] See pp. 203–20 of this volume.—Ed.

[2]Letter to the Swiss Workers” was written by Lenin in connection with the following events: In July 1912 the Menshevik liquidators’ bureau of the united organisation of the R.S.D.L.P. in Zurich sent a letter to the Executive of Die Eintracht (a Social-Democratic organisation) and to the Swiss Workers’ League. In the letter the bureau declared itself to be the sole representative of the R.S.D.L.P. groups in Zurich On July 27 (August 9) the Bolshevik Swiss Section of the R.S.D.L.P. Organisation Abroad held a meeting which was attended by representatives of the Zurich, Davos, Berne, Lausanne and Geneva Bolshevik groups.

The debate at the meeting ended in the adoption of resolutions (1) on the situation in the Party, (2) on the state of affairs abroad, and (3) a protest resolution against the liquidators’ bureau. The three resolutions were published in the form of hectographed leaflets, the first and second being in the Russian language and the third, which was published along with Lenin’s present letter, in German.

[3] The International Socialist Bureau—the permanent executive and information agency of the Second International. The decision on its formation from representatives of the socialist parties of all countries was adopted at the Paris Congress of the Second Inter national in September 1900. G.V. Plekhanov and B. N. Krichevsky were elected to the Bureau as representatives of the Russian Social-Democrats. Lenin was a member of the Bureau representing the R.S.D.L.P. from 1905 on. In 1912 the Sixth (Prague) All-Russia   Party Conference re-elected Lenin to the Bureau as representing the R.S.D.L.P. On the Bureau Lenin fought resolutely against the opportunism of the leaders of the Second International. The Bureau ceased to function in 1914.

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