First published in 1959 in Lenin Miscellany XXXVI.
Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1976, Moscow, Volume 45, pages 61b-62a.
Translated: Yuri Sdobnikov
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
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I am writing you about your exclusion (and Svidersky’s) from the collegium. I believe that it was necessary to put through the All-Russia Central Executive Committee’s decision on such members in a pedantic manner—and that is how the C.C. has decided. Political conditions demand particular circumspection in this matter, as in the matter of recruiting workers. I hope you will fully understand that the political considerations, which the C.C. has approved, must not and cannot in any sense be interpreted as signifying a lack of personal confidence, an underestimation of personal qualities, etc. (even if there were gossipy attempts to do so).
The new composition of the collegium without yourself must be accepted as a political necessity, and the mistrust and suspicion (of the unwillingness to “recruit workers”, unwillingness to have more democracy, etc.) should be dispelled by hard work (I personally am sure that you and Svidersky will do this quite easily, and that this will come about of itself through a continuation of your work). The whole point is to have your work, without the official high rank (member of the collegium), refute all the slanders, all the apprehensions of the workers and the trade unions. I repeat I am sure that you and Svidersky will understand this and will easily do it, There and there alone lies the gist of the matter.
With communist greetings,
 A reference to the resolution on the food question adopted by the All-Russia Central Executive Committee, on N. P. Bryukhanov’s report, on September 26, 1920. Its point 12 said: “In order to make the work of the governing centre of the People’s Commissariat for Food more flexible, the Council of People’s Commissars is to be authorised to limit the Collegium of the People’s Commissariat for Food to seven members (the People’s Commissar and his deputy included), instructing the People’s Commissariat for Food to give a precise definition to the functions and responsibilities of each” (Postanovleniya i rezolutsii sessii VTsIK sedmogo sozyva = [Decisions and Resolutions of the Seventh All-Russia Central Executive Committee Session], Moscow, 1920, p. 77).
A Plenary Meeting of the R.C.P.(B.) Central Committee on December 9, 1920, adopted a decision to reduce the number of members of the Commissariat’s Collegium to seven, including the People’s Commissar, in accordance with the resolution of the All-Russia Central Executive Committee. On December 14, the C.P.C. approved the new Collegium: People’s Commissar A. D. Tsyurupa, Deputy People’s Commissar N. P. Bryukhanov and members I. S. Lobachev, N. Osinsky, A. P. Smirnov, A. B. Khalatov, L. M. Khinchuk.