V. I.   Lenin


To:   J. V. STALIN

Dictated: Dictated by phone on December 8, 1922
Published: First published in 1965 in Collected Works, Fifth (Russian) Ed., Vol. 54. Printed from a typewritten copy.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1976, Moscow, Volume 45, pages 598b-599.
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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Comrade Stalin

Comrade Stalin:

I question the legality of yesterday’s decision about Rozhkov, because:

first, this decision, contrary to custom and rules, had not been entered on the agenda before 12.00;

second, the documents were not communicated to C.C. members beforehand;

third, there was no ground for haste after a twofold discussion of the question, especially since I was present at the first part of the sitting, and the question came up just when I had to leave. That is why I insist on referring the matter to the plenum, especially because only a week remains before it meets.[1]

On the question of Lozovsky, I propose that the time which has been made available should go into a more thorough search for the necessary candidates.[2]

We, as a Party, have already devoted an unconscionable amount of energy to the Comintern, and, consequently, to the Profintern as well. If Lozovsky has proved to be independently not quite satisfactory, there is need to recruit fresh forces either from among the foreigners, or among workers who would in no case be used otherwise, i.e., either for organisational, or practical, or administrative work. That is why it is quite impossible to take Kalnin who, I have heard, has started rather important and, unless I am mistaken, rather successful work in Donbas. On no account either should there simply be an appointment of Tomsky, because he is swamped with work at the All-Russia Central T.U.C., which is rendered extremely difficult by the shortage of men. If necessary, I propose the appointment of Tomsky and Rudzutak to have them devote to this new duty not more than 30 minutes a day, with the compulsory engagement of two or more secretaries who know foreign languages and who are capable of keeping Tomsky and Rudzutak informed in every detail. I propose that an assignment to find such secretaries be given to the Orgbureau or the Secretariat, provided they are not removed from any post which our Party needs.

I draw attention to the fact that if men like Rothstein are not used, this is a clear indication of crying anarchy in the administrative arrangements of the Profintern and the Comintern, because, at any rate, such men have proved by their long work that they are quite suitable for literary activity, for example, in the old Neue Zeit[3]; there is no doubt that given the necessary secretarial assistance these men will be of exceptional benefit, and the required secretaries can and must be recruited not from among Russians but foreigners. It is high time that an end should be put to the drawing of forces from our Party for the benefit of the Comintern and the Profintern.

I propose that a relevant proposal should be sent to the C.C. Secretariat or the Orgbureau.[4]



[1] On December 14, 1922, the Politbureau of the R.C.P.(B.) C.C. rescinded its decision of December 7 and decided to exile Rozhkov to Pskov, and to deport him from Soviet Russia at the first anti-Soviet act.

[2] On November 30, 1922, the Politbureau of the R.C.P.(B.) C.C. instructed the Orgbureau of the C.C. to place at the disposal of the Comintern up to 10 functionaries within a week.

[3] Die Neue Zeit—a theoretical journal of the German Social-Democratic Party, published in Stuttgart from 1883 to 1923.

Lenin is referring to the period up to the mid–1890’s, when Frederick Engels was helping the journal.

[4] On the question of the Profintern (Red International of Trade Unions) the Politbureau of the R.C.P.(B.) C.C., on December 19, 1922, adopted Lenin’s proposals as set out in this letter,

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