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V. I. Lenin

EXTRAORDINARY SIXTH
ALL-RUSSIA CONGRESS OF SOVIETS
OF WORKERS', PEASANTS', COSSACKS'
AND RED ARMY DEPUTIES

NOVEMBER 6-9, 1918


From V. I. Lenin, Collected Works, 4th English Edition,
Progress Publishers, Moscow, 1966

Vol. 28, pp. 135-64.

Translated from the Russian
Edited by George Hanna


Prepared © for the Internet by David J. Romagnolo, djr@marx2mao.org (December 1999)


EXTRAORDINARY SIXTH ALL-RUSSIA CONGRESS OF SOVIETS OF
WORKERS'
, PEASANTS', COSSACKS', AND RED ARMY DEPUTIES,
November 6-9, 1918 [58] .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .


 
135

   1.
 

SPEECH ON THE ANNIVERSARY OF THE REVOLUTION,
NOVEMBER 6   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .


137

2.
 

SPEECH ON THE INTERNATIONAL SITUATION,
NOVEMBER 8   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .


151


NOTES



page 506


NOTES

  [58] The Congress was held at the Bolshoi Threatre between November 6 and 9, 1918. Its opening coincided with the celebrations of the anniversary of the October Revolution. There were 1,296 delegates (963 with voting rights and 333 with voice but no vote), of whom 1,260 were Communists. The agenda included the following items: anniversary of the October Revolution, the international situation, military situation building of Soviet power at the centre, Poor Peasants' Committees and local Soviets. Lenin was elected honorary chairman of the Congress. After hearing Lenin's report on the anniversary of the October Revolution at the first sitting on November 6, the delegates sent greetings to workers, peasants and soldiers of

page 507

all countries and their leaders who were fighting for peace and socialism, and to the Red Army. On Sverdlov's proposal the Congress adopted an appeal to the governments at war with Soviet Russia to start peace negotiations. In view of the strengthening of Soviet power and the victories of the Red Army the Congress adopted a decision on amnesty.
    At the second session of the Congress on November 8 Lenin made a report on the international situation. The Congress unanimously endorsed a resolution that had been drawn up by Lenin and adopted at the joint session of the All-Russia Central Executive Committee, the Moscow Soviet, factory committees and trade unions on October 22,1918 (see pp.128-30 of this volume. [Transcriber's Note: See Lenin's "Resolution Adopted at a Joint Session of the All-Russia Central Executive Committee, the Moscow Soviet, Factory Committees and Trade Unions". -- DJR]). On the same day, after hearing the report of People's Commissar of Justice D. I. Kursky, the Congress passed a resolution on revolutionary legality, drawn up on the basis of Lenin's theses. At its last session on November 9 the Congress discussed the military situation and Soviet development, and adopted appropriate resolutions. The Congress decided to merge the Poor Peasants Committees, which had already fulfilled their functions with volost and village Soviets. The delegates warmly welcomed the news of the revolution in Germany and expressed their solidarity with the German workers, soldiers and sailors.
    A new All-Russia Central Executive Committee was elected, consisting of 207 full members and 39 alternate members. The Congress summed up the results achieved by Soviet power in the first year of its existence and drew up a programme of work for the Soviet Government in the near future.    [p. 135]

  [59] This refers to the Congress of the Poor Peasants' Committees of the Northern Region, which was held in Petrograd between November 3 and 6, 1918. Over 15,000 representatives of the Poor Peasants' Committees in eight gubernias of the Northern Region and other gubernias took part in Congress work. Party and Soviet organisations of Petrograd and the Northern Region had carried out extensive preparatory work for the Congress under the guidance of the Organising Bureau headed by S. P. Voskov, People's Commissar for Food of the Northern Region. The Congress discussed the current situation, Poor Peasants' Committees and local Soviets, supply and distribution of products, the question of the Red Army, rural education and posts and telegraphs. The Congress adopted a decision to form model regiments from poor peasants, which was later approved by the Sixth All-Russia Congress of Soviets on the proposal of the Regional Congress. Its other resolutions concerned the merger of Poor Peasants' Committees with local Soviets, the Soviet government's food policy, educational and other questions.
    The Congress was of vast political importance, as it strengthened the alliance of the working class and the working peasants.    [p. 143]

  [60] Reference is to the telegram sent "to all military commissars, military instructors, army commanders and all Soviets" on November 5, 1918, over the signatures of Lenin, Sverdlov and People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs Chicherin in connection with the rupture by

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Germany of diplomatic relations with Soviet Russia. It was published in Pravda and Izvestia on November 6.    [p. 150]

  [61] In 1848-49 the Russian tsar Nicholas I sent troops to help the Austrian emperor suppress the revolution in Hungary.    [p. 159]

  [62] In 1863-64 Russian troops suppressed the liberation insurrection in Poland.    [p. 159]

  [63] This refers to the sudden refusal of the Dutch Government to permit the entry of a plenipotentiary envoy of the R.S.F.S.R., who was already on his way to the country. Before his departure from Russia the plenipotentiary had received from the Dutch Consul in Moscow a visa notifying him of his recognition by the Dutch Government as a plenipotentiary envoy of the R.S.F.S.R. at the Hague.    [p. 160]

  [64] L'Echo de Paris -- a reactionary bourgeois paper published in Paris from 1884 to 1938.    [p. 161]

  [65] III-me Internationale -- organ of the French Communists in Soviet Russia, published in Moscow. Its first issue appeared on October 20 1918. Among its contributors were Jacques Sadoul, Inessa Armand (Y. Blonina) and others. Publication was discontinued in March 1919.    [p. 162]

  [66] The total sum of debts incurred by Russia through loans received by the tsarist and Provisional governments (including foreign investments in Russian industry) exceeded 16,000 million rubles in gold. All foreign loans contracted by the tsarist government and the Provisional Government were repudiated by the All-Russia Central Executive Committee's decree of January 21 (February 3), 1918.    [p. 162]

  [67] Manchester Guardian -- a liberal newspaper, one of the most popular and influential bourgeois newspapers. It was founded in 1821 and appeared once a week (in 1857 it became a daily). In the first years after the October Revolution it gave a more or less objective coverage of events in Soviet Russia.
    The quotation further on is from the article "The Allies and Russia".    [p. 162]