V. I.   Lenin



Written: Written on December 17, 1921
Published: First published in 1933 in Lenin Miscellany XXIII. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1976, Moscow, Volume 45, pages 409b-412a.
Translated: Yuri Sdobnikov
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive 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 most concise information possible (2-3 figures) and so precise (or with a reservation of how close it is to the real thing) as to make it worth while for me to insert it in my speech at the Congress of Soviets?

_ _ || _ _ please let me have the shortest possible replies, one or a maximum of two pages

1. To Comrade Chicherin (or, if he is unable to reply, to Litvinov) and to Comrade Radek

Will it be enough to say, in characterising the international position of the R.S.F.S.R., that from the side of Poland and Rumania, it is only their war party that threatens and not all their ruling classes?

that the alliance of the four Powers (Britain, the United States, France and Japan) concluded at the   Washington Conference is, first, highly unstable, like all imperialist alliances; and, second, hostile to all the other peoples?

Should anything be added to this?

Is it all right to tell about the plan to invite Russia and Germany to the second conference in April 1922?[4] What source should I quote? How authentic or probable is this to be considered?

2. To Comrade Chicherin (Litvinov)

Is it all right to characterise our progress for 1921 by the increase in the number of trade treaties with European powers? If it is, list them (in 1920 only with Britain, and in 1921 with such-and-such countries).

If not, is it ail right to characterise progress in this respect by means of data other than the volume of trade exchange (about which I shall inquire from the People’s Commissariat for Foreign Trade)?

3. To Comrade Lezhava

Is it possible to characterise our progress for 1921 in terms of developing trade with other countries by means of two or three figures, however general and approximate? For instance, purchases and orders in 1920—about so much; for so many months of 1921, to an approximate figure, giving a probable total of up to so much?

Is it possible to bring out Germany in this respect?

Is it possible to give two or three final figures on the volume of our exports in 1921 as compared with that in 1920?

4. To Comrade Fomin

Could you let me have the exact or rough figures about the number of new locomotives (and cars? and tank cars?) brought in from abroad in 1921? compared with 1920? and other products for transport?

ditto: ordered in 1921 for the amount of?

Is it possible for me to give in my report at the Congress of Soviets facts about the state of transport in 1921 compared with 1920, in the briefest form, stating the essential (one page)?

5. To Comrade Trotsky

Is it possible to add to your theses and your report something about the army’s economic work? about the uninterruption of continuous ties with the labour army councils?[5] and in general according to the assignment formulated in a decision either by one of the C.C. plenums in 1921, or one of the Politbureau sittings in the autumn of 1921?[6]

6. To Comrade Khinchuk

Could you supplement the figures for the development of Centrosoyuz turnover which you have given me (1  million; 3 and 6 million in gold for August, September and October 1921),[1] first, with approximate figures for November? second, the figure for grain purchases? third, the figure for the number of gubernia societies which have submitted their reports out of the total? fourth, any other very brief results which I could cite in my report at the Congress of Soviets?

7. To Comrade Osinsky

Could you give me for my report at the Congress of Soviets 2–3 summary figures, first, on our fulfilment of the task of supplying peasants with seed for the autumn of 1921; second, on other tangible results or successes already in evidence in 1921?

8. To Comrade Smilga (or Trifonov)

Could you let me have, for insertion in my report at the Congress of Soviets, the most concise figures on fuel:

I have Pyatakov’s report on Donbas. Could I have the results for 1920 and 1921?

ditto on oil?

ditto on peat?

ditto on firewood for 1920 and 1921?

9. To Comrade Bogdanov

Please let me have for my report at the Congress of Soviets the briefest information (not more than 1/2–1 page on each point)

on metallurgy for 1921 in comparison with 1920?

on Yugostal?[2]

on the importance and prospect of the enterprise of Rutgers and his group?

on assistance to the Urals (Hammer’s concessions)

on the textile industry?

on some results of the work of the Central Administration for the Farms of Industrial Enterprises (task: the shortest, most indicative figures which could be cited in the report to show both the great difficulty of the situation and any small signs of improvement).

10. To Comrade Gorbunov

On electrification

the end of Levi’s article[7]

increase in the number and capacity of electric-power stations

for 1918, 1919, 1920 and 1921.

The importance of Kashira and Utkina Zavod, and their forthcoming start in the spring of 1922.

ditto about Volkhovsite.[8]

11. To Comrades Lunacharsky, Pokrovsky and Litkens

Please let me have for my report at the Congress of Soviets the briefest data for a graphic picture of the growing thirst for knowledge, for learning, and progress in this sphere (not more than 2 or 3 figures on the number of students, number of libraries, etc.; the most salient points).

12. To Radchenko: about the hydraulic extraction of peat: what has been ordered in Germany? prospects for 1922?


[1] See also Document 530 of this volume.—Ed.

[2] A mining and steel trust with mills in the Ukraine, the Northern Caucasus and the Crimea.—Ed.

[3] The materials received to the inquiries sent to the People’s Commissariats and other central establishments were used by Lenin   in his All-Russia C.E.C. and C.P.C. report at the Ninth All-Russia Congress of Soviets (see present edition, Vol. 33, pp. 143–77). The text scored off with double lines was included, in a somewhat modified wording, into each inquiry when they were retyped for dispatch. See Collected Works, Fifth (Russian) Edition, Vol. 54, Supplements, Documents 6–9.

[4] A reference to the proposed International Economic and Financial Conference at Genoa (Italy).

[5] Labour Army Councils were set up on the basis of the Military Army Councils in view of the transfer of some of the Red Army combat units to the status of labour armies during the breathingspace in 1920. On the Labour Army Councils were representatives of the People’s Commissariats for Food, Railways, Agriculture, and Labour, and the Supreme Economic Council.

[6] A reference to the decision of the R.C.P.(B.) Central Committee Plenum of August 9, 1921, adopted on Lenin’s proposal, which “recognises the need to raise the question of more intensified transfer of the Army to economic work, and authorises the Revolutionary Military Council of the Republic to hold several sittings specially to discuss and prepare this” (Central Party Archives of the Institute of Marxism-Leninism of the C.P.S.U. Central Committee).

On the plenum’s instructions the question of the Army’s labour tasks was considered by the C.L.D. on August 12, 1921. Under its decision these matters were referred to the C.P.C. Having heard on August 16, 1921, the reports of the commissions set up by the C.L.D., the C.P.C. approved the draft decisions with some amendments.

[7] A reference to the article by engineer V. L. Levi, “Russia’s Electric-Power Supply (General Review)”, which appeared in Ekonomicheskaya Zhizn on December 8, 1921, and described Russia’s electric-power supply from 1917 to mid–1921.

On December 20, 1921, there was published a table entitled “The Growth in the Number of Stations in the Period from 1917 to July 1, 1921” under the caption “Russia’s Electric-Power Supply” with the following introductory sentence: “In addition to the general review of Russia’s electric-power supply (see Ekonomicheskaya Zhizn No. 276 of Decembers, 1921), the editorial board publishes the following table which characterises the growth in the number of electric-power stations from 1917 to July 1, 1921.”

[8] A reference to the electric-power stations then under construction.

Kashira, the Stale Kashira District Electric-Power Station.

Utkina Zavod, the Krasny Oktyabr Electric-Power Station near Petrograd, whose first 10,000 kw section was started on October 8, 1922.

The Volkhov site, the Volkhov Hydro-Electric Power Station. The decision to build it was taken by the C.P.C. in July 1918, and the work was started after the Civil War, in 1921. It was run in at the end of 1926.

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