V. I.   Lenin



Written: Written at the beginning of December 1916
Published: First published in 1931 in Lenin Miscellany XVII. Sent from Zurich. Printed from the original. Translated from the German.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, [1977], Moscow, Volume 43, page 586a.
Translated: Martin Parker and Bernard Isaacs
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
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.
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Dear Comrade,

I think it desirable to have the following logical construction of the resolution (based on Platten’s resolution[1]) (the phrase in brackets is from Platten word for word):

1. “The present world war is an imperialist war.”

2. (“The criminal policy of peace”), namely, of Switzerland, which may also become involved in the imperialist war, on the one hand as a result of this policy, on the other owing to the imperialist environment.

3. Therefore, “defence of the fatherland” is a “hypocritical phrase” for Switzerland too.

4. Rejection in principle of defence of the fatherland, and “the strongest methods of proletarian class struggle”. A fullest possible list of these methods.

Immediate demobilisation.

5. “The complete destruction of militarism” not in the pacifist sense, but in close bearing on the socialist revolution and as a result of it.

In my opinion, this may give us a good five-point resolution.

It goes without saying that I give no formulations here, and merely point out logical sequence and train of thought.

With sincere greetings,


[1] This refers to Platten’s draft resolution on the war issue, writ ten with a view to the emergency congress of the Swiss Social-Democratic Party, at which the question of the attitude towards the war was to be discussed.

(For variants of Platten’s draft resolution with Lenin’s remarks see Lenin Miscellany XVII, pp. 57–64.)

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