The article "The Revolutionary Upswing" was published early in June 1912, after Lenin had made, at a meeting of the Paris section of the R.S.D.L.P. Organisation Abroad, a report on developments in Russia (April 26 [May 9], 1912) and read a paper entitled "The Revolutionary Upswing of the Russian Proletariat" (May 31 [June 13]). A printed notice issued by the Paris section of the R.S.D.L.P. Organisation Abroad gave a detailed outline of the paper coinciding with the main propositions of this article.
Sotsial-Demokrat (The Social-Democrat ) -- the Central Organ of the R.S.D.L.P., published illegally from February 1908 to January 1917. In all 58 issues appeared. The first issue appeared in Russia,
and then publication was transferred, first to Paris and afterwards to Geneva. By decision of the Central Committee of the R.S.D.L.P., the Editorial Board consisted of representatives of the Bolsheviks, Mensheviks and Polish Social-Democrats.
Sotsial-Demokrat published more than eighty articles and other items by Lenin. On its Editorial Board Lenin upheld a consistently Bolshevik line. Two members of the Board‹Kamenev and Zinovyev‹took a conciliatory view of the liquidators and tried to defeat Lenin's line. Another two members, the Mensheviks Martov and Dan, obstructed the work of the Board and at the same time openly defended liquidationism in Golos Sotsial-Demokrata.
Lenin's uncompromising struggle against the liquidators resulted in Martov and Dan resigning from the Editorial Board in June 1911. From December 1911 the newspaper was edited by Lenin.
The leaflet mentioned by Lenin was printed in St. Petersburg and circulated at the factories before May 1, 1912. It called on the workers to hold meetings and demonstrations in Nevsky Prospekt on May Day, under the slogans put forward by the Sixth (Prague) All-Russia Conference of the R.S.D.L.P.: "A constituent assembly, an eight-hour working day, and confiscation of the landed estates." The leaflet ended with the militant appeals: "Down with the tsar's government! Down with the autocratic Constitution of June 3! Long live a democratic republic! Long live socialism!" It was signed: "Meeting of Representatives of All Organised Workers of St. Petersburg", "Social-Democratic 'Unity' Group", "City Central Social-Democratic Group", "Group of Worker Socialist-Revolutionaries", "Group of Worker Social-Democrats of St. Petersburg", and "Representatives of May Day Committees".
On June 4 (17), 1912, the full text of the leaflet was published in the news section of Sotsial-Demokrat No. 27.
The December uprising was the armed uprising of the Moscow workers against the autocracy in December 1905. For nine days the workers, led by the Moscow Bolshevik Social-Democrats, fought gallantly on the barricades against the tsar's troops. The government did not succeed in crushing the revolt until fresh troops arrived from St. Petersburg. It dealt with the insurgents with monstrous cruelty; the workers' districts ran with blood, and thousands of workers were killed in Moscow and the vicinity.
The Okhrana was an agency of the secret police in tsarist Russia, in charge of political investigation. It was under the jurisdiction of the Police Department.
See Note 1.
[Note 1 -- This refers to the shooting of unarmed workers in the Lena gold-fields, Siberia, on April 4 (17), 1912.
The gold-fields were owned by British capitalists, and their partners were Russian capitalists, members of the tsar's family, and tsarist dignitaries. The owners made a profit of about 7,000,000 rubles annually. The gold-fields being situated in a region of taiga forests, almost 2,000 kilometres from the Siberian Railway, the capitalists and their helpers committed the worst excesses: they paid the workers niggardly wages for their back-breaking toil, supplied them with rotten food, and outraged the workers' wives and children. Unable to bear the oppression and outrages any longer, the workers went on strike early in March 1912. The strike was led by the Bolshevik group formed in the gold-fields in the autumn of 1911. On March 4 (17), 1912, a central strike committee was elected with the Bolsheviks occupying a leading position on it. The demands to be presented to the management included: an eight-hour working day, a 10 to 30 per cent wage increase, abolition of fines, organisation of medical aid, improvement of food and living quarters, etc. The Board of Lenzoto (Lena Gold-Mining Company) rejected these demands and decided to dismiss the strikers, stop supplying them with food on credit and evict them from the gold-fields barracks, which meant dooming the workers and their families to death by starvation. The workers did not allow the police to carry out the evictions. The strikers held their ground and resisted all attempts at provocation and intimidation. The strike was peaceful and organised.
At the instance [insistence? -- DJR] of influential British and Russian shareholders of the company, the tsarist authorities decided to use arms against the strikers in order to intimidate workers in Russia. During the night of April 3-4 (16-17) some of the members of the Central Strike Committee were arrested. In reply, on April 4 (17) about 3,000 workers marched to the Nadezhda Mine to lodge a complaint against the unlawful actions of the authorities and hand the Procurator a petition for the release of those arrested. Captain Treshchenkov of the gendarmerie ordered his men to open fire, with the result that 270 workers were killed and 250 injured.
The news of the bloody drama on the Lena aroused the furious indignation of the workers throughout Russia. Protest demonstrations, meetings and strikes took place all over the country. The Social-Democratic Duma group interpellated the government on the Lena shootings. The insolent reply of the tsar's Minister Makarov -- "So it was and so it will be!" -- added to the workers' indignation. Strikes protesting against the Lena shootings involved about 300,000 workers. They merged with the May Day strikes in which about 400,000 workers took part. "The Lena shootings," Lenin pointed out, "led to the revolutionary temper of the masses developing into a revolutionary upswing of the masses. " (See p. 103 of this volume. [Transcriber's Note: See Lenin's "The Revolutionary Upswing". -- DJR])]