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.135

By the Chairman of the Revolutionary War Council and People’s Commissar for Military and Naval Affairs to the Red Army on the Southern Front, August 1, 1919, No.135, Voronezh

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

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According to information received, certain army units are not always showing sufficient regard for the local population. A complete change needs to be made in this respect. The peasants of the zone adjoining the front already understand very well that the Red forces of the Southern front are their only defence against the unbridled Denikinite bands, who destroy crops, burn down villages, kill peasants and rape peasant women. The overwhelming majority of the local peasants willingly do what they can to help the Red Army. Commissars and commanders must see to it that, when army units need something, they apply through the village and volost authorities, for it is senseless and criminal to take by force when the peasants are willing to give.

In fraternal unity between the Red Army and the peasants and workers lies the salvation of the Soviet Republic!

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Last updated on: 22.12.2006