Marx in Neue Rheinische Zeitung November 1848

The Neue Rheinische Zeitung

The Assembly at Frankfurt

by Karl Marx

Neue Rheinische Zeitung No. 150
 Translated by the Marx-Engels Institute
Transcribed for the Internet by, 1994

Cologne, November 22. The resolution of the Berlin Assembly regarding the refusal to pay taxes has been declared unlawful and void by the Frankfurt Parliament. It has thus sided with Brandenburg, with Wrangel, with specific Prussianism. Frankfurt has moved to Berlin, and Berlin to Frankfurt. The German Parliament is in Berlin, and the Prussian Parliament in Frankfurt. The Prussian Parliament has become a German Parliament, and the German one has become Brandenburg's Prussian Parliament. Prussia was to have merged into Germany, now the German Parliament at Frankfurt wants Germany to be merged into Prussia.

German Parliament! Whoever spoke of a German Parliament after the grave events in Berlin and Vienna. After the death of Robert Blum no one gave another thought to the life of the noble Gagern. Who cared a hang about a Schmerling after the setting up of the Brandenburg -- Manteuffel ministry! The professors who "made history" for their own amusement had to allow the shelling of Vienna, the murder of Robert Blum and the barbarity of Windischgratz! The gentlemen who were so greatly concerned about the cultural history of Germany left the practical application of culture in the hands of a Jellachich and his Croats! While the professors were evolving the theory of history, history ran its stormy course without bothering about the professorial history.

The resolution passed the day before yesterday has destroyed the Frankfurt Parliament. The resolution has driven it into the arms of the traitor Brandenburg. The Parliament at Frankfurt is guilty of high treason, it must be brought to trial. If a whole people rises to protest against an arbitrary act of a king, and if this protest is made in an entirely legal way -- by refusing to pay taxes -- and an assembly of professors declares -- without being at all competent to do so -- that the refusal to pay taxes, this revolt of the whole people, is unlawful, then this assembly places itself outside the law, it commits high treason.

It is the duty of all members of the Frankfurt Assembly who voted against this resolution to resign from this "deceased Federal Diet". It is the duty of all democrats to elect these resigned "Prussians" to the German National Assembly at Berlin in place of the "Germans" who have left. The National Assembly in Berlin is not a "fragment", it is a complete entity, for it constitutes a quorum. But the Brandenburg Assembly at Frankfurt will become a "fragment", for the inevitable resignation of the 150 deputies will surely be followed by many others who do not wish to set up a Federal Diet at Frankfurt. The Frankfurt Parliament! It fears a red republic and decrees a red monarchy. We do not want a red monarchy, we do not want the crimson crown of Austria to extend its sway over Prussia, and we therefore declare that the German Parliament is guilty of high treason. Nay, we do it too much honor; we impute to it a political importance which it has long since lost. The severest judgment has already been passed upon it -- disregard of its rulings and total oblivion.