V. I.   Lenin

Draft Resolution on the Ukrainian Borotbist Party[1]

Written: Written February 6, 1920
Published: First published in 1945 in Lenin Miscellany XXXV. Printed from the manuscript.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, 2nd English Printing, Progress Publishers, 1971, Moscow, Volume 42, pages 174b-175a.
Translated: Bernard Isaacs
Transcription\Markup: D. Walters
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive (2003). 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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The Borotbists shall be qualified as a party, which, by its propaganda aimed at splitting the military forces and supporting banditism, is violating the basic principles of communism, thereby playing directly into the hands of the Whites and of international imperialism.

Also opposed to the interests of the proletariat is their struggle against the slogan calling for a close alliance with the R.S.F.S.R.

The whole policy must be systematically and steadily aimed at the dissolution of the Borotbists in the near future. To this end, not a single misdeed on the part of the Borotbists should be allowed to pass without being immediately and strictly punished. In particular, information should be collected concerning the non-proletarian and most disloyal nature of the majority of their party members.

The moment for their dissolution shall be determined within a short time by the Politbureau and communicated to the Ukrainian Revolutionary Committee.[2]


[1] Borotbists—members of a peasant based left-nationalist party, Borotba, formed in May 1918 after a split in the Ukrainian Left Socialist-Revolutionary Party on the basis of supporting soviet power in Ukraine. So called from the name of the Party’s central organ Borotba (Struggle). In March 1919 assumed the name of Ukrainian Socialist-Revolutionary Party of Communist Borotbists, and in August that of the Ukrainian Communist Party of Borotbists. Its leaders, among others, were V. Blakitny, G. Grinko and A. Shumsky. For Lenin’s appraisal of the Borotba Party see pp. 180-181 of this volume.

The Borotbists twice applied to the Executive of the Communist International asking to be admitted to membership of the Comintern and to be recognised as the main communist party in the Ukraine. The Comintern passed a special decision on this question on February 26, 1920, proposing to the Borotbists that they dissolve their party and merge with the Communist Party (Bolsheviks) of the Ukraine. The resolution said that the Executive of the Communist International could only regard the desire to found a second parallel party as an attempt to split the ranks of the working people.

The growing influence of the Bolsheviks among the peasantry and the successes of the Soviet government in the Ukraine forced the Borotbists to decide on voluntary dissolution.

The Fourth Conference of the Communist Party (Bolsheviks) of the Ukraine, held March 17-23, 1920, agreed to admit the Borotbists into its ranks, all the newly enrolled members being reregistered. Eventually, however, many Borotbists resumed their anti-Soviet activities and headed the struggle of the counter-revolutionary bourgeois-nationalist elements in the Ukraine.

[2] The manuscript further contains a note by Lenin reading: “Trotsky and Rakovsky are instructed, not later than tomorrow, to word this resolution more accurately and transmit it tomorrow by coded telegraph to the Ukrainian Revolutionary Committee.”

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