V. I.   Lenin



Written: Written February 27, 1917
Published: First published in 1964 in Collected Works, Fifth (Russian) Ed., Vol. 49. Sent from Zurich to Clarens. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, [1977], Moscow, Volume 43, pages 612b-613.
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 Friend,

If you send me your theses on the war question, I shall be glad to discuss them, of course. As for your coming out against Golay, I don’t see why the idea of its being “awkward” should occur to you. In my opinion, on the contrary, it’s anything but awkward and extremely useful. We have got to come out as strongly and bluntly as possible against the ridiculous pacifism of the French (achieving socialism without revolution, and so on) and the ridiculous belief in democracy. Golay, in my opinion, should be given a special and public trouncing for recanting the valuable   admissions in his pamphlet Le Socialisme qui meurt. I consider this pamphlet excellent material for criticising the weakness and shallow thinking of the French Lefts.

I have received from you a copy of the Russian text of the leaflet (I am very pleased that you liked it). But there is no sign of the French text!! Yet I asked for it to be done in duplicate!!! The thought that we shall be late preys on my mind—there is only 2 months to go until 1. V and the difficulties of communicating with the warring countries are enormous.

As regards Usiyevich, you write yourself that he is “spineless”. So I did not scold him for nothing (and I asked for the letter to be shown to you so that we could agree on methods of influencing him).

So please hurry up as much as you can with the French and English translations of the leaflet. If for any reason you couldn’t do it in duplicate, then at least let me know exactly when you sent the leaflet (French) to Abramovich.

I am ever so pleased to hear that you are coming out more often before the youth. A useful thing! The young are the only people worth working on! Everything must be done to break down their pacifism and disbelief in the mass movement (what about the Zurich strike of 1912? And in Geneva in 1900 or 1902?). It would be a good thing if you could collect material on the big strikes in the history of the labour movement in French Switzerland.

Nadya has recovered.

All the very best,

P.S. I have read Pannekoek’s discussion with Kautsky in Neue Zeit (1912). Kautsky is despicably mean, and Pannekoek, but for some inaccuracies and slight mistakes, is almost right. Kautsky is the acme of opportunism.


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