V. I. Lenin

Resolution Of The Council Of People’s Commissars On Negotiations With The Rada

Delivered: 19 December, 1917
First Published: 21 December, 1917 in Pravda No. 220. And Izvestia No. 257.
Source:Lenin’s Collected Works, Progress Publishers, Moscow, Volume 26, 1972, pp. 398-399
Translated: Yuri Sdobnikov and George Hanna, Edited by George Hanna
Transcription & HTML Markup: Charles Farrell and David Walters
Online Version: Lenin Internet Archive November, 2000


Having heard the report of Comrade Proshyan, who, as a delegate to the Peasants’ Congress, had a talk with Vinnichenko, Grushevsky, Porsh and others, in their capacity of official representatives of the Rada;

and considering that these official representatives of the Rada have expressed their readiness in principle to negotiate an agreement with the Council of People’s Commissars on the basis of recognition by the Council of People’s Commissars of the independence of the peop!e’s Ukrainian republic, and the Rada’s recognition of the counter-revolutionary nature of Kaledin and his accomplices;

considering further that the Council of People’s Commissars has always unconditionally recognised the right of every nation, including the Ukrainian, to exist as an independent state;

that any attempt to avoid war with the Rada, provided the Rada recognised Kaledin’s counter-revolutionary nature and did not hamper the war against him, was undoubtedly desirable;

expressing its conviction that only the Soviets of the Ukrainian poor peasants, workers and soldiers could set up a power in the Ukraine under which clashes between fraternal peoples would be impossible,

the Council of People’s Commissars, deeming it appropriate at the same time to open effective negotiations with the Rada with the aim of stopping the clashes caused by the Rada’s policy in respect of the common front and Kaledin’s counterrevolutionary revolt, resolves:

to invite the Rada to negotiate an agreement on the above-mentioned principles and to designate the town of Smolensk or Vitebsk as being probably the most convenient place for the negotiations.