V. I.   Lenin



Written: Written on December 25, 1918
Published: Published in Petrogradskaya Pravda No. 285, December 27, 1918. Printed from a typewritten copy.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, [1976], Moscow, Volume 35, page 376.
Translated: Andrew Rothstein
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
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Zinoviev, Smolny, Petrograd
Northern Region Food Commit lee, Economic Council
Gubernia Food Committee, Optosoyuz
Copies to Trudosoyuz, Gubernia Food Committees
Olonets, Cherepovets, Novgorod, Pskov Economic Councils

According to information received, notwithstanding the decree of November 21, local co-operatives are being nationalised and closed, their goods requisitioned and no help is being given in restoring their legitimate activity.[1] All this causes dislocation of supply and upsets the organisation of the Soviet Republic’s rear. The present is an instruction immediately to cease attempts to infringe and evade the decree of November 21, to restore the closed and nationalised co-operatives, to return their goods, and without fail to include the co-operatives in the distributive system, on an equal footing with state shops. The co-operative machinery should be made use of in all possible ways in the business of purchasing supplies and distribution, and representatives of the co-operative movement should be drawn into co-operative commissions of the food supply organisations. Infringement and evasion of the decree will be punished. This telegram is to be communicated for information and action to all Executive Committees and food supply organisations of the Northern Region. To be published in the local newspapers.

Ulyanov (Lenin)
Chairman, Defence Council


[1] The decree “On Organisation of Supply”, passed by the Council of People’s Commissars on November 21, 1918, provided for development of the co-operative movement and the revival of nationalised and municipalised co-operative shops and stores. The decree made it incumbent on the Poor Peasants’ Committees and the local Soviets to establish systematic supervision of the work of the co-operatives in order to prevent any attempts that might be made by kulaks and other counter-revolutionary elements to dominate them.

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