Third Anniversary of the Russian Revolution
First Published: 1920 in Rabotnicheski Vestnik No. 100, November 3;
Source: Georgi Dimitrov, Selected Works Sofia Press, Sofia, Volume 1, 1972, pp. 80-83;
Transcription/HTML Markup: Mathias Bismo;
Online Version: Marxists Internet Archive (marxists.org) 2003.
On November 7, 1917 (October 25 old style) the Russian workers and peasants, led by the Bolshevik Party, overthrew the bourgeois coalition government established after the February Revolution and transferred all power over vast and multi-million Russia to the Soviets of Workers and Peasants.
This was the first victory of the international revolutionary proletariat over capitalism and imperialism, the beginning of the world-wide revolution.
This great exploit of the Russian proletariat was met by the enemies of the Revolution both inside Russia and in all the other countries with loud prophecies to the effect that the power of the Soviets would not be able to last more than a few weeks, that it was bound to collapse, mainly because the simple workers and peasants would not be able to cope with the extremely complex economic and administrative problems in so vast a country as Russia.
Soon, however, the world imperialists and their tools – from the extreme conservatives to the most leftist socialist traitors – had a big disappointment in store for them. Despite the tremendous internal and external obstacles, the Soviet regime, far from heading for a fall, was growing stronger day after day, boldly introducing radical changes and proceeding with the construction of a Communist system in the country.
Thereupon the imperialists of the Entente resorted to military intervention against the free and self-governing Russian people by financing the counter-revolutionary armies of Kolchak, Yudenich and Denikin and organizing an economic blockade of Soviet Russia.
The imperialists were exultant, expecting the early destruction of this nest of the world proletarian revolution which was so dangerous for them. Their agents and their lavishly subsidized press were proclaiming to the whole world the forthcoming erasing of Bolshevik Russia from the face of the earth.
Difficult and critical months set in for the Russian Socialist Federal Soviet Republic, months of privations, bloodshed and death. But the Russian workers and peascreated their glorious revolutionary Red Army, an army such as the world had never seen before, which realized that it was fighting not only to defend its own socialist homeland from the imperialist beasts of prey, but also to clear the way for the complete liberation of all working people in the world. This Red Army swept away and annihilated the counter-revolutionary hordes of Kolchak, Yudenich and Denikin.
Yet precisely at the moment when, after this brilliant victory, Soviet Russia was transforming its Red Army into an army of labour and was preparing to devote itself wholeheartedly to the process of internal reorganization and to the building of the new system, the imperialists stabthe Russian people in the back, sending against it the Polish landlords' army, organized and well equipped by the Entente.
But even this long-planned and painstakingly prepared heinous attack was repelled by the heroic Red Army and terminated not in the collapse of the Soviet regime, as the imperialists had hoped, but in peace between Poland and Soviet Russia.
The peace treaty signed with Poland now enables SoRussia to cope, once and for all, with the last counterrevolutionary army on Russian soil – Baron Wrangel's army, which gravely threatened Southern Russia and is now suffering the blows of the valiant Russian workers and peasants.
Three whole years have passed in incessant and bloody struggles with the imperialist counter-revolution.
It should be stressed again and again that the Russian trade unions have played an important role in this respect. After the 1917 October Revolution when all the power passed into the hands of the Workers' and Peasants' Soviets, the trade unions ceased to be organizations fighting against capitalist exploitation, which was dealt a mortal blow by the proletarian revolution. They turned into active collaborators of the Soviet regime, into a staunch support of the proletarian dictatorship.
Not only did the Russian trade unions devote all their efforts to the struggle against economic ruin, helping to carry out the socialization of industry, to restore the distransport system and to increase labour productivity to the maximum, but they also took – and continue to take – a most active part in the defeat of the counterand in the struggle to repel the offensives of the imperialist counter-revolutionary armies. They suffered thousands of casualties on the battlefields, but they spared no effort to supply the Red Army with everything that was needed for victory.
Now that we are celebrating the third anniversary of the Great Russian Revolution, we can venture to say that its cause would have been a lost cause were it not for the admirable contribution of the trade unions.
Devoting all their forces to the proletarian revolution, the Russian trade unions did not, however, shut themselves into their national frontiers. Deeply umbued with the ideas of communism, they felt it their duty to take the lead in the international revolutionary rallying of the trade union movement in all countries under the banner of the Third Communist International and in the name of the Communist revolution and of the world-wide proletarian dictatorship.
It was on the initiative of the Russian trade unions that an International Trade Union Council was set up as the basis for a Red Trade Union International, opposed to the treacherous yellow Amsterdam Trade Union Federation; day after day the International Trade Union Council is rallying greater masses of organized workers in all countries. It was recently joined by the minority of the Confederation of Labour in France, and in the near future this minority will grow into an overwhelming majority. The revolutionary working class movements in Italy and Great Britain are rapidly drawing the trade unions in their countries closer to the Red Trade Union International. The general revolutionary situation throughout Europe helps to extricate the mass trade unions from the influence of the old treacherous leaders and of the Amsterdam Federation and to enlist them into the ranks of the international revolutionary proletarian front. The trade unions in the Balkan and Danubian countries have already joined the International Trade Union Council without any reservations and they are uniting their efforts in a Balkan-Danubian Trade Union Federation as part of the Red Trade Union International.
Within a few months (July-October) the Moscow InterTrade Union Council succeeded in rallying nearly eight million organized workers from various countries.
To sum up, the third anniversary of the Russian Proletarian Revolution coincides with the process of the rapid revolutionary rallying of the working class masses in all countries and foreshadows the forthcoming unfolding of the world-wide proletarian revolution and the triumph of the proletarian dictatorship throughout the world.
With the blood they abundantly shed, the Russian procleared the path for the liberation of all working mankind. Celebrating their great historic achievements, the Bulgarian proletarians will prepare ever more persistently to worthily fulfil their duty – to secure the triumph of the Communist revolution in their own country.
After the defeat of Kolchak and Denkin, the entente staked its hopes on Pilsudski, a reactionary nationalist and the strong man of bourgeois Poland, on the one hand, and the White-Russian General Wrangel, on the other. In April 1920 the Polish forces invaded the Ukraine and captured Kiev, while Wrangel advanced from the south and threatened the Donbas. The Red Army launched a counter-offensive, liberated Kiev and advanced to the gates of Warsaw, whereupon Poland concluded a peace treaty with the Soviets (October 20, 1920).