V. I.   Lenin

Despicable Methods

Published: Pravda No. 58, May 29 (16), 1917. Published according to the text in Pravda.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1964, Moscow, Volume 24, pages 422-423.
Translated: Isaacs Bernard
Transcription\Markup: B. Baggins and D. Walters
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive 1999 (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.

A whole congress of delegates from the front,[1] in a resolution adopted unanimously on May 13, condemns the shabby methods which Rech uses to slander our Comrade Zinoviev and sow discord between the army and the Bolsheviks. The worthy gentlemen of Rech have no intention, of course, of publishing the resolution of the congress of front-line delegates, although a copy of it was forwarded to the paper by the congress. Instead, that disreputable newspaper is keeping up its smear campaign against our paper and comrade Zinoviev in a deliberate attempt to provoke a minor riot.

Pravda regularly publishes reports about Germany which are to be found in no other paper. Where, how does Pravda get it’s special [!] information?” Rech asks significantly in an article significantly entitled “Curious Sources of Information”.

Where, Messrs. Slanderers?

From the telegrams and letters of our correspondent, Comrade Radek, the Polish Social-Democrat, who spent a number of years in tsarist prisons, who has been active for over ten years in the ranks of the German Social-Democrats, who has been expelled from Germany on account of his revolutionary agitation against Wilhelm and against the war, and who has gone specially to Stockholm to keep us sup plied with information. From letters and telegrams, Messrs. Cadets, which your servants who rule the roost on the Russian-Swedish frontier are not always able to intercept, from newspaper cuttings and illegal German newspapers and leaflets, which our friends, the followers of Karl Liebknecht, send us, in exactly the same way as we receive similar material   about France from the French socialist-internationalist Henri Guilbeaux, friend of Romain Rolland and associate of the well-known French internationalist Comrade Loriot.

The German General Staff has banned fraternisation,” we wrote in Pravda on the basis of information recently published in all the Russian newspapers. The Rech slanderers make big eyes at this and counter it with the statement of the Russian War Minister that all sectors of the front where fraternisation took place have been destroyed by the enemy’s artillery”.

We do not know, of course, whether this report about destroyed sectors is true or not. But if it is true, it confirms rather than refutes the report that the German General Staff is opposed to fraternisation. It is obvious that by destroying the sectors where fraternisation occurred, the German General Staff is discouraging fraternisation both on the part of the Russian soldiers and of those honest German soldiers who do not want to use fraternisation as a trap.

You are not very convincing, you gentlemen counterfeiters of the Cadet Party!

In conclusion, one more of their lies: At the Peasant Congress, as we know, Zinoviev was not given a chance to finish his speech,” writes Milyukov’s mouthpiece. As we know”, you are lying again, gentlemen of the Cadet Party, just as you lied about the congress of front-line delegates. Things must be pretty bad for you, gentlemen, If you are compelled to resort to such shameless and despicable methods.


[1] The Congress of delegates from the front, held in Petrograd on May 12–17 (25–30), discussed, among others, the following questions: = the war, fraternisation by the soldiers at the front, deserters, and prisoners of war. The Congress declared in favour of organising a Front Section under the Petrograd Soviet pending the formation of an All-Russia Soviet of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies. The Congress, whose proceedings were influenced by the Mensheviks and Socialist-Revolutionaries, came out against fraternisation and for continuing the war.

< backward   forward >
Works Index   |   Volume 24 | Collected Works   |   L.I.A. Index