The Military Writings of
Leon Trotsky

Volume 2, 1919

How the Revolution Armed

The Southern Front

II. Denikin’s Offensive (May 15-August 1919)

ORDER No.107

By the Chairman of the Revolutionary War Council of the Republic and People’s Commissar for Military and Naval Affairs, June 6, No.107, Balakleya station

Transcribed and HTML markup for the Trotsky Internet Archive by David Walters

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A group of persons united around the guerrilla Makhno have taken the path of the traitor Grigoriyev and set about organising a conspiracy against the Soviet power. This gang from Gulyay Polye has dared to announce for June 15 a congress of Anarchist kulak delegates for struggle against the Red Army and the Soviet power.

This congress is banned. I announce that anyone who takes part in it will be regarded as a traitor who is organising a plot in the immediate rear of our Red forces and opening the gates to the enemy.

The Makhnovites are appealing to renegades from other units and armies to join them.

I announce that:

To all the military authorities and to the battle-police units placed at my disposal order has been given to catch all traitors who quit their units without leave and go over to Makhno, and to bring them before the Revolutionary Tribunal as deserters, to be judged according to martial law.

There can only be one penalty for these individuals: shooting.

The All-Russia Central Executive Committee of Russia and the Ukraine has directed me to establish order at the front in the Donets Basin and in the immediate rear. I announce that this order will be introduced with an iron hand. Enemies of the workers’ and peasants’ Red Army, self-seekers, kulaks, pog omists, Makhnovites and Grigoriyevites will be crushed ruth lessly by staunch, reliable regular units. [51]

Long live revolutionary order, discipline and struggle against the enemies of the people!

Long live the Soviet Ukraine and Soviet Russia!


51. The Makhno movement was an anarchical rebel movement among the Ukrainian peasantry. Already in 1918, under the German occupation, Makhno was carrying on a guerrilla struggle against the Germans and Skoropadsky. During our first advance into the Ukraine Makhno came over to the Red Army, but soon, basing himself on the kulak elements in the Gulyay-Polye area,he raised a revolt against the Soviet power. Makhno at first supported Denikin’s offensive, but soon was organising a guerrilla struggle in his rear. Eventually, in 1921, the Makhno movement was liquidated, after the abolition of compulsory grain deliveries and the introduction of the policy of freedom of trade.

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Last updated on: 22.12.2006