V. I.   Lenin


Written: Written before January 21, 1918
Published: First published in 1924 in the book by V. A. Antonov-Ovseyenko, Zapiski o grazhdanskoi voine (Notes on the Civil War), Vol. I. Sent from Petrograd to Kharkov. Printed from the telegraph form text.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1971, Moscow, Volume 36, page 473.
Translated: Andrew Rothstein
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
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People’s Commissar Antonov, Kharkov

In view of complaints by the People’s Secretariat of friction which has arisen between you and the Central Executive Committee of the Ukraine,[1] I request you to inform me of your side of the matter. Naturally our interference in the internal affairs of the Ukraine, unless required by military necessity, is undesirable. It is more proper to have the various measures adopted through the local authorities, and in general it is best to settle all misunderstandings on the spot.



[1] The telegram was sent to V. A. Antonov-Ovseyenko in connection with the complaint lodged against him with Lenin by the Ukrainian Central Executive Committee of Soviets. Antonov-Ovseyenko had appointed commissars from his staff to the railway stations and several towns of the Donets Basin, without agreeing this with the local organs, which had aroused the dissatisfaction of the Ukrainian authorities.

Antonov-Ovseyenko took steps to eliminate the friction upon receipt of the telegram and letter from Lenin (see p. 474) and recalled his commissars.

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