J. V. Stalin

A New Period

April 15, 1912

Source : Works, Vol. 2, 1907 - 1913
Publisher : Foreign Languages Publishing House, Moscow, 1954
Transcription/Markup : Salil Sen for MIA, 2008
Public Domain : Marxists Internet Archive (2008). 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.

The economic actions of the workers are being followed by their political actions.

The strikes over wages are being followed by protests, meetings, and political strikes in connection with the Lena shooting.

In St. Petersburg and Moscow, in Riga and Kiev, in Saratov and Yekaterinoslav, in Odessa and Kharkov, in Baku and Nikolayev—everywhere, in all parts of Russia, the workers are rising in vindication of their comrades who were murdered on the Lena.

"We live! Our scarlet blood seethes with the fire of unspent strength!" . . .

In its increasing revival the labour movement is passing through a third stage. And this after the bacchanalia of the counter-revolution.

About two years ago the workers were still trying to resist the growing attacks of the insatiable employers. Defensive strikes and, in places, offensive strikes— thus the revival of the movement expressed itself. That was the first stage. The Moscow region was the pioneer.

About eighteen months ago the workers passed on to offensive strikes. They put forward new economic demands and strove to secure the restoration of the conditions of 1905-06, of which the workers were robbed when counter-revolution was rampant. That was the second stage. Here the western border regions were the pioneers.

Now the third stage has been reached, the period of the political movement.

From stage to stage!

And this was to be expected. The boom in the main branches of industry and the growth of capitalist profits simultaneously with the fall in real wages, the growth of the industrial and political organisations of the bourgeoisie simultaneously with the crushing of the workers' organisations, the rise in the prices of the necessities of life and growth of landlords' incomes simultaneously with starvation reigning among 30,000,000 peasants, when, driven by want, mothers and fathers are compelled to sell their daughters and sons—all this was bound to bring about a political revival in the ranks of the working class.

The Lena shooting merely served as a signal.

Obviously, "all is not quiet at the Shipka Pass." This is felt even by the representatives of the government, who are hastily preparing to "pacify" the country. Apparently, it is affecting even our foreign affairs. . . .

But news of political protest strikes continues to pour in.

There can be no doubt that the subterranean forces of the movement for emancipation have set to work. . . . Greetings to you, first swallows!


The St. Petersburg Zvezda, No. 30, April 15, 1912