V. I.   Lenin



Written: Written in January, after 20, 1920
Published: First published in 1959 in the book: Obrazovaniye Bashkirskoi ASSR (The Formation of the Bashkir Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic), Ufa. Printed from the text in Krestinsky’s handwriting and signed by Lenin.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1975, Moscow, Volume 44, pages 333c-334a.
Translated: Clemens Dutt
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
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Copies to Eltsin, Ufa
and to Artyom Sergeyev, Bashkir Revolutionary Committee, Bashkir Regional Committee, Sterlitamak

In stating in the telegram that “The All-Russia Central Executive Committee considers it improbable and quite out of the question that Artyom, Samoilov and Preobrazhensky could carry on agitation against the Bashkir Republic”, the All-Russia C.E.C. thereby again confirmed the necessity of their most loyal observance of the Bashkir Constitution.   The telegram of the Central Committee sent later to Comrade Artyom had the same aim. Under these circumstances I am quite sure that Artyom, Preobrazhensky and Samoilov will give no real cause for complications. The members of the Bashkir Revolutionary Committee should act in the same way. Only from your telegram did I learn that Comrades Shamigulov, Izmailov and others were deported from Bashkiria by the Bashkir Revolutionary Committee; the Central Committee thought they were travelling to Moscow on their own initiative to make a report, considered it unnecessary for the five comrades to waste time on the journey and sent them back to Sterlitamak.

Your attempt to deport old Party comrades from Bashkiria, the absurd reference to their Bukharinist orientation, the persistent, though incorrect, application of the epithet “Ukrainians” to Preobrazhensky, Artyom and Samoilov— give me grounds for doubting your objectivity in this matter. Therefore I order you immediately to fulfil the telegram from the All-Russia C.E.C. of 20.I, which is still unfulfilled as regards cancellation of the conspiracy report.

On behalf of the Politbureau of the C.C.,


[1] The words “On behalf of the Politbureau of the C.C., Lenin” are in Lenin’s handwriting.—Ed.

[2] Lenin’s telegram was written in connection with the attempt by Bashkir bourgeois nationalists to carry out a coup d’état in Bashkiria in January 1920. The bourgeois nationalist A.-Z. A. Validov and a group of his followers who, under pressure from the working people, came over to the side of Soviets in February 1919, had not changed their views or abandoned their aim to secure bourgeois autonomy for Bashkiria.

In the summer of 1919 the Validov group set up a “ Provisional Central Bureau of the Communists of Bashkiria” headed by Yumagulov, who was at the same time Chairman of the Revolutionary Committee organised by the Validov group. Validov’s “Bureau” tried to assume leadership of the Party organisations of Bashkiria although it had not been endorsed by the Central Committee of the R.C.P.(B.). In January 1920, on the proposal of Validov’s supporter, K. M. Rakai, the Bashkir Revolutionary Committee set up a Foreign Relations Department. When the Party Regional Committee on January 13, 1920, condemned this step and resolved to recall Rakai from the posts he held, the Chairman of the Revolutionary Committee, Yumagulov, tried to carry out a coup d’état. On the night of January 15, 1920, by his order the members of the Party Regional Committee and other Communists were arrested, and a manifesto was issued accusing them of conspiring against the Bashkir Republic.

The telegram of the C.E.C. of January 20, 1920, mentioned by Lenin, stated: “In view of the friction between the Bashkir Revolutionary Committee and the Ufa Gubernia Revolutionary Committee, and your accusation against Comrade Eltsin of deviating from the policy of the central government, the C.E.C. by agreement with the C.C., R.C.P.(B.) sent to Sterlitamak Comrades Artyom (Sergeyev), Preobrazhensky and Samoilov, who have no local Ufa interests and are incapable of pursuing a localist, chauvinist policy. The C.E.C. considers it improbable and quite out of the question that they could carry on agitation against the Bashkir Republic. The C.E.C. therefore orders you immediately, upon Comrade Artyom’s directives, to free all the arrested members of the Regional Committee and other Communists, to cancel your report of a conspiracy, and make known to the population and army units that the arrests were due to a misunderstanding.” = (Obrazovaniye Bashkirskoi ASSR. Sbornik dokumentov i materialov, Ufa, 1959, p. 444.)

Shortly afterwards, Validov, Yumagulov and Rakai were recalled from Bashkiria and expelled from the Party.

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