J. V. Stalin

Note to V. I. Lenin from Petrograd by Direct Wire

June 18, 1919

Source : Works, Vol. 4, November, 1917 - 1920
Publisher : Foreign Languages Publishing House, Moscow, 1953
Transcription/Markup : Salil Sen for MIA, 2009
Public Domain : Marxists Internet Archive (2009). 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.

I consider it necessary to draw your attention to the following questions.

First. Kolchak is the most serious enemy, because he has sufficient space for retreat, sufficient man power for his army, and a rear abounding in food. Compared with Kolchak, General Rodzyanko is a mere gnat, because he has neither food in his rear, nor space for retreat, nor sufficient man power. The mobilization of twenty age classes, to which he is now compelled to resort in his two or three uyezds owing to lack of man power, will mean the end of him, since the peasants cannot stand mobilization on such a scale and are bound to turn away from him. Consequently, under no circumstances should forces be withdrawn from the Eastern Front for the Petrograd Front in such numbers as might compel us to halt our offensive on the Eastern Front. In order to force Rodzyanko back to the Estland frontier (there is no point in our going any further) one division will be sufficient, and its removal will not involve halting the offensive on the Eastern Front. Please give this your special attention.

Second. We have unearthed a big conspiracy in the Kronstadt area. The battery commanders of all the forts in the entire Kronstadt fortified area are implicated. The aim of the conspiracy was to seize possession of the fortress, take control of the fleet, open fire on the rear of our troops, and clear the road to Petrograd for Rodzyan-ko. The relevant documents have fallen into our hands.

It is now clear to me why Rodzyank, with his relatively small forces, advanced so brazenly on Petro-grad. The insolence of the Finns is now also understandable. Understandable, too, are the wholesale desertions of our combat officers. So is the strange fact that at the moment of the betrayal of Krasnaya Gorka the British warships vanished from the scene; the British, obviously, considered that direct interference on their part (intervention!) would not be "convenient," and preferred to turn up after the fortress and the fleet had fallen into the hands of the Whites, with the object of "helping the Russian people" to establish a new, "democratic system."

Obviously, Rodzyanko and Yudenich (to the latter can be traced all the threads of the conspiracy, which was financed by Britain through the Italian, Swiss and Danish embassies) based their whole scheme on the expectation of a successful issue of the conspiracy, which, I hope, we have nipped in the bud (all persons implicated have been arrested and the investigation is proceeding).

My request: make no relaxations in regard to the arrested embassy officials, keep them in strict confinement until the completion of the investigation, which is revealing a host of new threads.

I shall give you a more detailed account within three or four days, by which time I hope to come to Moscow for a day, if you have no objection.

I am sending the map. I could not do so until now simply because I was away all the time on front-line business, mostly at the front itself.


June 18, 1919, 3 a. m.

First published in Pravda, No. 53, February 23, 1941