J. V. Stalin

Who Needs the Pre-Parliament ?

October 10, 1917

Source : Works, Vol. 3, March - October, 1917
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.

When, several months ago, Kornilov planned the dispersal of the Soviets and the establishment of a military dictatorship, he decided at the same time to convene a "democratic" Pre-parliament.

What for?

In order to substitute the Pre-parliament for the Soviets, to use it to mask the counter-revolutionary nature of Kornilovism and to deceive the people as to the real aims of the Kornilov "reforms."

After the "liquidation" of the Kornilov revolt, Kerensky and the Cadets, Chernov and the Moscow industrialists organized a "new" coalition dictatorship of the bourgeoisie and decided at the same time to convene the Kornilov Pro-parliament.

What for?

Was it for the purpose of fighting the Soviets? Was it for the purpose of masking Kerenskyism, which differs very little from Kornilovism? Avksentyev assures us that the Pre-parliament was convened for the "salvation of the fatherland." Chernov "develops" Avksentyev's idea and assures us that the aim of the Pre-parliament is the "salvation of the country and the republic." But Kornilov also thought of "saving the country and the republic" when he decided to establish a military dictatorship and mask it with a Pre-parliament. In what way does the Avksentyev-Chernov "salvation" differ from Kornilov's?

Well then, for what purpose has the present Kornilov abortion, the so-called Pre-parliament, been called into being?

Let us listen to what Mr. Adzhemov, one of the original architects of the Pre-parliament, a member of the Central Committee of the Cadet Party, former member of the Provisional Committee of the State Duma, and now a member of the Pre-parliament, has to say. Let us listen to him, because he is more candid than others:

"It should be the primary task of the Pre-parliament to lay a foundation for the government, to invest it with power, which, of course, it does not now possess."

But for what purpose does the government need this "power"? Against whom is it to be directed? Listen further:

"The cardinal question is, will the Pre-parliament pass the rehearsal, will it be able to administer the necessary rebuff to the Soviets of Workers' and Soldiers' Deputies? It is beyond doubt that the Soviet and the Pre-parliament are adversaries, just as two months from now the Constituent Assembly and these organizations will be adversaries. If the Pre-parliament stands the test, the work may go with a swing" (see Sunday's Dyen).

Well, that puts it clearly! That's frank and, if you like, honest.

The Pre-parliament will give the government "power" in order to "administer a rebuff to the Soviets," because the Pre-parliament, and it alone, can be an "adversary" of the Soviets.

Now we know that the Pre-parliament has been called into being not for the "salvation of the country," but to fight the Soviets. Now we know that the renegades from the ranks of democracy, the Mensheviks and Socialist-Revolutionaries, have ensconced themselves in the Pre-parliament not in order to "save the revolution" but to help the bourgeoisie fight the Soviets. It is not for nothing they are desperately opposing a Congress of Soviets.

"If the Pre-parliament stands the test, the work may go with a swing," Mr. Adzhemov hopes.

The workers and soldiers will do everything in their power to see that the Kornilov abortion does not "stand the test," and that its foul "work" does not "go with a swing."


Rabochy Put, No. 32, October 10, 1917