TOILING MASSES OF RUSSIA, WHEN, STORMED HEAVENNovember 25, 2021
Remembering The Great November Revolution
On The Revolution’s 104th Anniversary (7th Nov 1917-2021)
On Wednesday, November 7, 1917, at 12 noon, cannon from the Peter-Paul Fortress on the banks of Neva River in Petrograd, the then capital of Russia, roared, and the Russian workers, toiling peasants and the masses oppressed for centuries, stormed the Winter Palace. The legendry, massive blow of the iron fist of the proletariat had struck and struck really hard. The whole world had, indeed, shaken. All other centers of power, such as Telephone-Telegraph Exchange, Post Office, State Bank were taken over by the Bolshevik Red Guards on the night of November 6 and 7 itself and red flags were fluttering, gloriously, over there. Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov, Lenin, the great leader, teacher and guide of the world proletariat exhorted the workers, peasants, armed detachments of the Bolshevik Red Guards and the sea of oppressed masses of Russia to forge ahead and take state power in their hands without losing any time. They, as if waiting for the command of their beloved leader, stormed the streets of Smolny and turned into an invincible army. All the preparations for the so-called interim government of Kerensky to arrest Bolshevik leaders, fell apart like sand castles in front of the roaring army of the proletariat. The mercenaries of the ‘provisional’ government fled like cowards. The whole world was stunned. What has happened? State power has always belonged to the ‘Lord’, the slave owners, the kings and emperors, the Jille Elahis or the ‘Gentlemen’ Capitalist money sharks. How come, these unwashed, the untidy, wearing sweat-smelling clothes have occupied the royal Winter Palace? What have they to do with the state power?? Distinguished journalist John Reid, one of the founders of the American Communist Party, was an eyewitness to this historic moment. He writes in his iconic book ‘Ten Days That Shook the World’ that how even after capture of power, the employees of the State Bank refused to obey the orders of Smolny’s Commissar and denied payment of required cash for government work to even the armed Bolshevik red guards. ‘Such people cannot be government officers, they murmured!!’ Bolshevik Red Guards had to break the lock of the safe with a rifle shot!! Bourgeois rulers of the world thought this is a dream, a scary dream, a nightmare, it cannot come true, it will soon be shattered. The reality could be so bitter, they could not believe. It was an epoch-making event, as if suddenly a bright light had lit up in the darkness. An event that, under the inherent law of nature, dialectical materialism, occurs when a quantitatively changing society takes that epoch-making leap for the qualitative change. Just like the temperature of heating water quietly increases by one degree and suddenly as soon as it moves beyond 90 degrees, water starts gurgling, jumping and suddenly and disquietly turns into steam, making thereby a qualitative change. In the same way, the proletariat, which is subjected to daily oppression for seeking job, forming union, demanding wages and allowances increase, for its dignity, honor; turns into a disciplined soldier after getting organized and armed with revolutionary theory of Marxism-Leninism. Working class recognize its power and then rises in revolt, shouting, this is enough and then settles all pending scores with their robbers, once and for all. The working class rises as one unit and breaks loose to take on the exploiters who fill their coffins by stealing their labor power and their managing committees, the governments who come in the way, simultaneously. This decisive battle is not for any salary-allowance, bonus-insurance, but to pull the robbers from power by force and to launch themselves into the seat of state power. It is the epoch- making moment that comes but in ages, when expropriators are expropriated. There is no ‘middle path’ acceptable that day, no panchayat sits, no commission-committee deceit is tolerated, no farce of ‘compromise formula’ is taken into consideration on that day. Only the final settlement is aimed. That time had arrived in Russia. The proletariat of Russia, a very backward and terribly oppressed country, organized itself under the truly revolutionary leadership of its great leader, Lenin, was at a point in history where the leading proletariat of developed Western Europe could not reach. The great Russian working class was writing a new script for the proletariat of the world to follow. The heaven was, indeed, stormed on the day by the proletariat-peasant combine of Russia.
Glory of First Attack on Heaven will Remain with Brave Communards of Paris Commune
By the way, November Revolution was not the first event in history of gaining power by the toiling masses by pulling the robbers down from state power and overthrowing them lock, stock and barrel. Heroic Communards of Paris had established that feat in the year 1871, 46 years before 1917. Revered Pakistani poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz has written so well;
Poor have always been wrestling with oppression
Neither their rituals are new, nor our customs new.
We have always blossomed flowers in the fire
Neither their defeat is new nor is our victory new
(यूँ ही हमेशा उलझती रही है ज़ुल्म से खल्क; न उनकी रस्म नई है, न अपनी रीत नई
यूँ ही हमेशा खिलाये हैं हमने आग़ में फूल; न उनकी हार नई है न अपनी जीत नई)
Valiant Communards of Paris, who had no precedent of any such battle, who were treading the virgin path on a terrifyingly challenging road, displayed the indomitable courage while confronting the French National Guards on 18 March 1871. They defeated them in straight battle and stormed the Bastille, the bastion of French power. They established world’s first working class government at the famous, De Ville Paris. Our first great teachers of the proletariat, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, themselves, witnessed that historical French war. Karl Marx, who, did not agree with the strategy adopted by the communards, but when the war broke out, he underscored the importance of this unique historical experiment, saying, ‘Workers of France have stormed the heaven’, supported and guiding them. At the same time, taking lessons from that war, he made an important change in Communist Manifesto that the proletariat cannot use a ready-made system of government after seizing power from the bourgeoisie. While destroying it completely, they will have to set up their own alternate system. Working class government that lasted only 72 days was the first, novel and innocent experiment that stunned the world. On 28 May 1871 the dice had, however, turned. Thiers, the butcher, took reins of the power and let loose his mercenary army on the defeated Communards. The kindness displayed by the communards to the enemy bourgeoisie was avenged in such a way that, after regaining power from the workers, executioner Thiers shot dead over 20,000 workers and 750 soldiers of the army who had supported the workers. Streets of Paris were drenched with the worker’s blood. A total of 38,000 workers were arrested, most of them were hanged or shot dead and 7,000 workers were deported.
The boldness of the communards was unmatched, but they made several grave mistakes. Besides being kind and benevolent towards enemy, they failed to draw peasants to their camp and weaken the enemy camp headed by the bourgeoisie, not only before the insurrection but even after assuming power. They did not seize the Bank of France where all the looted money of the capitalist bandits was deposited and they relied on the same old rotten and corrupt system which is designed to perpetuate the class rule of the bourgeoisie. Revolution is, in fact, a battle for supremacy and domination by one class over another and any strategic error, during the course, matters extremely seriously. Frederick Engels, the great teacher and leader of the proletariat writes on March 18, 1891 on the 20th anniversary of Paris Commune.
“The hardest thing to understand is certainly the holy awe with which they remained standing respectfully outside the gates of the Bank of France. This was also a serious political mistake. The bank in the hands of the Commune – this would have been worth more than 10,000 hostages. It would have meant the pressure of the whole of the French bourgeoisie on the Versailles government in favor of peace with the Commune…”
They could not foresee the baseness of the bourgeoisie, its treachery and the fact that the poisonous roots of power are encrypted on the entire state structure. Communards had to pay with their blood quite literally for these mistakes. How the French and German robbers, fighting each other like mad dogs, got united overnight to crush the workers; the Communards watched in bewilderment. Any mistake in this do or die battle proves fatal.
Lenin studied Paris Commune events very minutely. He grasped every possible interpretation of each line that Karl Marx wrote in ‘Civil War in France’ and ensured that there remains no shortcoming of the Paris Commune in November Revolution. Taking stock of the experience of Paris Commune and evaluating Russia’s failed revolution of 1905, Lenin writes in 1908,
"Though these glorious revolts of the working class were crushed, there will be further rebellions and the proletariat will compete with them. All the forces of its enemies will be rendered ineffective and the proletariat will emerge out of them completely invincible.”
November Revolution is Immortal – Always a Great Inspiration for the Working Class
Karl Marx had mentioned that future proletarian revolutions would occur earlier in industrially developed countries because industrial development drives the proletariat to become conscious and organized and thus creates its own grave-digging army. While criticizing Bakunin, Marx writes,
“The revolutions that bring about qualitative changes in the society are tied to the historical conditions of economic development. That is, it is possible only where capitalist development and the industrial proletariat have achieved a specific position.”
That is why he predicted that the socialist revolutions would happen first in England or France as the industrial proletariat is far ahead there both in terms of number and organization compared to other countries. A leader who memorizes Marxism like a dogma would not have even considered the possibility of a socialist revolution in Russia because capitalism was the least developed there. Industrial proletariat was very few in number. The New Economic Policy was introduced there to develop capitalism two years after assuming power by the proletariat. A leader who fails to understand essence of Marxism and mugs up it as a parrot would have said that the socialist revolution in Russia is several generations away. We are in the pre-revolutionary era. We shall only dig trenches and revolution will be done by the generations to come!! Lenin, the great leader and teacher of the world proletariat, however, understood Marxism as a guiding principle to action. That is why, he was able to enrich it. He realized from his in-depth study that capitalism has attained its next and final stage, imperialism in course of its development. Not only has the centralization and concentration of capital reached alarming proportions and it has entered the stage of monopolistic financial capital, but this process also has intensified the underlying law of the uneven and chaotic development of capitalism. In such a situation, it will be easy to break this vicious chain from where the link is the weakest. The special feature of this assessment what makes Lenin truly great, raising his stature and positioning him as the ‘Leader of the Revolutionary Leaders of the World’, is that while proposing this, his bottom line was not that ‘look, Marx could not understand this even’ but it was that this is today’s Marxism. Development of capitalism to the stage of imperialism is what Marx meant by capitalist development. Russia is an industrially backward country, here the industrial proletariat is not yet in majority among the oppressed masses but the revolutionary consciousness among all the oppressed class is the highest here and most importantly, it has its own alternative system of governance, the Soviet, which is not there in any other country. These peculiarities, hence, make the chain weakest here. In such a situation, averting the revolution in Russia would be a grave mistake, a gross anti-Marxist act. Not only this, he like a seasoned scientist, a surgeon, laid down the diagnostic symptoms to recognize that the objective conditions have ripened for a revolutionary action. What is a revolution, how does it happen, how to recognize that the objective conditions are ripe for revolution; explaining all these questions in a very precise and convincing manner, Lenin writes like a scientist in his important article in 1915 on the topic ‘The Collapse of the Second International‘:
“To the Marxist it is indisputable that a revolution is impossible without a revolutionary situation; furthermore, it is not every revolutionary situation that leads to revolution. What, generally speaking, are the symptoms of a revolutionary situation? We shall certainly not be mistaken if we indicate the following three major symptoms: (1) when it is impossible for the ruling classes to maintain their rule without any change; when there is a crisis, in one form or another, among the “upper classes”, a crisis in the policy of the ruling class, leading to a fissure through which the discontent and indignation of the oppressed classes burst forth. For a revolution to take place, it is usually insufficient for “the lower classes not to want” to live in the old way; it is also necessary that “the upper classes should be unable” to live in the old way; (2) when the suffering and want of the oppressed classes have grown more acute than usual; (3) when, as a consequence of the above causes, there is a considerable increase in the activity of the masses, who uncomplainingly allow themselves to be robbed in “peace time”, but, in turbulent times, are drawn both by all the circumstances of the crisis and by the “upper classes” themselves into independent historical action.”
Goal of revolution never disappeared from Lenin’s mind even for a minute. February Revolution broke out on 8 March 1917, it was called the February Revolution because at that time Julian calendar was used in Russia, which was 13 days behind the Gregorian calendar prevalent around the world. Therefore, 8 March meant 24 February, as the November Revolution which burst out on 7 November is also called October Revolution because according to Julian calendar it started on 25 October. After 1918, the same Gregorian calendar was adopted in Russia as well. The February Revolution was not a revolution organized by any revolutionary party. Autocratic dictatorship of the Tsar and the dire situation of severe hunger and deprivation in Russia during the First World War forced the people to revolt spontaneously and there were food riots everywhere in Russia. Hungry masses brought the brutal Tsar regime down. The oppressive autocratic regime of Tsar Nicholas II that had been going on for centuries got swept away. Flame of hunger is never doused by assurances. It turns into an inferno that reduces brutal empires to ashes. As generally happens in spontaneous movements, when the oppressed ruler is surrounded and cornered, he does play one last trick, whereby he vacates the chair but plants its henchmen in his place. Exactly, same happened in Russia. ‘Aristocratic Capitalist Democracy’ was established by the tsar’s stooges like Milyukov and Guchkov. There was no significant change in the imperialist war policies of the Tsar regime. Lenin was in Switzerland when that revolution happened. Even that fractured, aristocratic democracy opened the way for his return to Russia. He reached Petrograd on 3 April and lost no time in taking over reins of organizing and providing leadership to the revolutionary forces in Russia. What should be the road ahead for the revolutionary class of Russia, he laid down in his famous ‘April Thesis’. He clarified that the democratic revolution stage as it is, has been achieved. The first stage of revolution has, therefore, been completed and Russia has now entered into the stage of proletarian revolution because power has reached the hands of the Russian bourgeoisie. He did not say that the proletariat now has to fight along with the bourgeoisie to bring about a healthy and ‘vibrant’ democracy. As in our country in 1947, after transfer of power by the British to the Indian capitalists, many revolutionaries are making this mistake till date, and how long will they go on doing it and remain in democratic revolution stage, they only know. On 21 April 1917, Russian working people revolted again. Now against the authority of the Romanov Tsar’s stooges Guchkov-Milyukov and overthrew them. Now in its place a mixed power of Mensheviks and socialist revolutionaries took over, in which the power of the Soviets increased. Even after this, Lenin clearly said that there is no difference in the character of state power. The question of the Bolsheviks being a participant in this power does not arise. Bolsheviks now have to embark upon the path of socialist revolution to overthrow bourgeoisie from power. The democratic revolution has already been completed and the unfinished job of the democratic revolution will now be completed only in the socialist state headed by the proletariat. Capitalism does not bring democracy with any noble cause of social welfare, it does so only under its economic compulsions. That is why after attaining the reactionary position, it does not bring democracy, but gradually or in one stroke, it works to snatch whatever democratic space as is available as is happening everywhere, more so in India, today.
In view of the conditions that are present around the world today, whatever Lenin wrote during the period between February Revolution and November Revolution has to be read and re-read by all the activists of the revolutionary movement. Raising the slogan ‘All power to the Soviets’ in February, March and April, dropping that in May, June and July after the temporary occupation of the soviets by the anti-revolutionary forces, and then again raising the same vociferously after the Bolsheviks attained majority, shows the flexibility in approach required by the revolutionary leader as per changing material conditions. Revolution means defeating enemy class which is entrenched in power, decisively and comprehensively, gaining power and then not allowing its condition to be like that of the brave but inexperienced communards of Paris. For this, keeping a close watch on the enemy’s every move and adopting correct revolutionary line, strategy and approach is what ultimately matters. Revolution is also an art to tread through the sharp, curved turns and hoisting the red flag on top of the seat of power. Vision of the revolutionary leader has to be crystal clear, able to see far ahead and strategy has to be extremely flexible as the situation is always fluid during the last critical phase. Behaving like obstinate pony is a sure recipe of apocalypse. After the Bolsheviks attained majority in the Soviets of Petrograd and Moscow, it was unambiguously clear to Lenin that the historic time for a decisive assault to seize power has arrived. Lenin wrote an extremely important letter to the Central Committee of his Bolshevik Party, titled “The Bolsheviks must now take power in their own hands”.
“The Bolsheviks, having obtained a majority in the Soviets of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies of both capitals, can and must take state power into their own hands.
They can because the active majority of revolutionary elements in the two chief cities is large enough to carry the people with it, to overcome the opponent’s resistance, to smash him, and to gain and retain power. For the Bolsheviks, by immediately proposing a democratic peace, by immediately giving the land to the peasants and by reestablishing the democratic institutions and liberties which have been mangled and shattered by Kerensky, will form a government which nobody will be able to overthrow.
The majority of the people are on our side. This was proved by the long and painful course of events from May 6 to August 31 and to September 12. The majority gained in the Soviets of the metropolitan cities resulted from the people coming over to our side.
The Democratic Conference represents not a majority of the revolutionary people, but only the compromising upper strata of the petty bourgeoisie. We must not be deceived by the election figures: elections prove nothing. Compare the elections to the city councils of Petrograd and Moscow with the elections to the Soviets. Compare the elections in Moscow with the Moscow strike of August 12. Those are objective facts regarding that majority of revolutionary elements that are leading the people.”
Lenin was absolutely convinced that this was that very moment when history takes a leap in its course of development, as if a society going through labor pain is yearning for childbirth. Any delay, even for a moment to launch a decisive attack will be a crime because this historical clock will not remain static at this place. If we miss today, we will just miss, can’t say how long. He made his best efforts to convince the Central Committee of his party, but majority in CC was not agreeing. Annoyed Lenin, then, announced his resignation from the Central Committee. Party was stunned and his proposal was seriously considered again and he, eventually, got majority. The entire party cadre and all its front organizations, sympathizers and supporters were asked to be fully prepared. A confidential meeting of the Central Committee was held to decide the exact time of storming the Winter Palace, and 1 November (ie 19 October 1917) was fixed for a decisive attack, but the opposing minority group of the Central Committee represented by Zinoviev and Kamaniev betrayed as they wrote an article in a paper revealing the top secret plans. Lenin was furious. Party felt that now this whole program would have to be abandoned but Lenin did not want to let that historic moment of revolution pass. So the date was extended by just 6 days to 7 November 1917 (25 October 1917 according to the old Russian calendar). The toiling masses of Russia under the leadership of the proletariat stormed the Winter Palace. The state power of Russia fell into the hands of the Russian proletariat and toiling peasantry without any bloodshed.
November Revolution, the light of which spread far and wide and has become the inspiration for millions of oppressed people around the world. It gave strength to the freedom movements against colonial slavery everywhere and it scared oppressor rulers across the world. Today, when the capitalist plunder has been re-established in Russia by counter-revolution by traitors of the working class, even now the Great November Revolution remains and will continue to be a source of inspiration to the working class. Reviewing success of the November Revolution, Lenin humbly writes,
“We have always realized that it was not on account of any merit of the Russian proletariat, or because it was in advance of the others, that we happened to begin the revolution, which grew out of world-wide struggle. On the contrary, it was only because of the peculiar weakness and backwardness of capitalism, and the peculiar pressure of military strategic circumstances, that we happened in the course of events to move ahead of the other detachments, while not waiting until they had caught us up and rebel. We are now making this review so as to take stock of our preparations for the battles that will face us in the coming revolution.”
A special feature that every activist associated with the revolutionary movement should understand is that on 7 November 1917, the Bolsheviks had won power by over throwing the Kerensky’s government from power, but at that time, the class struggle could be waged only in the cities. Class struggle in the vast tracts of the countryside was carried out in a systematic manner by the proletariat after revolution using the instrument of state power. The first phase of the revolution was to gain power and hold on to it, which proved to be easy. But after that; first the terrible civil war and then the eradication of the kulaks by waging a class struggle in agriculture stretched up to 1930s, that is till 13 years of gaining power proved to be very tuff and full of difficulties and challenges. Until 1930, there were all four types of farming in Russia, the individual farm, the cooperative farm, the collective farm and the government farm. Socialist system in agriculture, theoretically, means only the government farms and this stage could be attained in the thirties only. If one thinks that socialism will be established by defeating the exploiting class in one stroke while simultaneously conducting class struggle in cities and countryside in vast countries like ours then it is nothing but day dreaming.
It is pertinent here to refer to the historic farmers movement going on in our country and congratulate the brave and determined farmers for winning the first round of the gritty battle and forcing arrogant fascist Modi government to take back the black, anti- farmer, anti-poor agricultural laws. Cautioning them, however, at the same time that they are up against a fascist power. Fascists too retreat if cornered but only strategically, to gain time and look for the opportunity to fight back more menacingly. Victory over fascist state power means defeating them lock, stock and barrel and this is, certainly, not that moment. There is another reason also to examine this farmers movement. A micro segment of the communist movement is taking a position that simply because the leadership of this farmers movement is with the rich farmers, that is why, opposing it is a revolutionary feat!! Even if, while doing so, one is found lying in the lap of the fascist BJP government which is brazenly subservient to the monopoly corporate class!! How this movement is causing deep fissures within the ruling class as formidable farmers segment is falling apart irretrievably with every step forward that it takes, how that rift is getting wider, deeper and unbridgeable, how the base of fascist power is colliding with a formidable wall of peasant-worker unity; these are unnoticeable, ignorable and insignificant facts for this segment of ‘revolutionaries’. Not only this, how the farmers are persistent, uncompromising and determined even after defeating fascist Modi government in first, crucial round to continue fighting and go to any extent for realization of their demand to enact a law to guarantee government purchase of their entire produce at a fixed price; this also does not matter to this segment. The fact that bourgeois governments can never take such guarantee to purchase entire produce, be it agricultural or industrial, and if this demand is pursued till its realization, then the movement will transgress capitalist system. How the bond between the peasantry and the proletariat is becoming stronger and deeper by each passing day. All these are extremely significant facts for a genuine revolutionary as they weaken the enemy camp and strengthen revolutionary camp tremendously. In case a revolutionary does not find any revolutionary kernel in all this then God save us from such revolutionaries!! Heroic and diligent farmers have confirmed that farmers’ movement sites cannot be destroyed, farmers will never crawl on their knees in front of Sarkar Bahadur pleading for mercy and they have frustrated every move of fascist Modi government to buy them or make them fight and finish themselves. Anyone harboring such dream can only be pitied.
In countries, as vast as ours, revolution means upsurge of millions and millions of destitute masses, it cannot be accomplished in a pre-structured, classical form, copy book style. Such mass upsurge cannot be confined to a structured and pre- decided trajectory. Even the mandatory condition of revolution, existence of a country wide revolutionary party will happen but not necessarily in the classical, bookish style that a revolutionary party will spread in one state after another. It is possible, rather likely that since the objective conditions are ripe everywhere and the whole world is sitting on a pile of gunpowder, some event may trigger a spark and fueled by the immense mass anger, it turns into an inferno and a revolutionary front comes into existence and in midst of that revolutionary turmoil, there emerges a revolutionary party or a revolutionary front. That is why it is said that a successful revolution in every country makes some specific contribution to the science of Marxism-Leninism and a new leader of the world communist movement is born out of it. ‘Let the small farmers be destroyed first, because this is the fate of small capital, and only after all the peasants have been completely destroyed, the proletarians will give a call to revolution’, let us see what the great leader of the proletariat and a worthy disciple of Lenin, Comrade Stalin has to say on exactly this issue in his famous article ‘The Economic Problems of the Soviet Union’.
“We cannot, of course, regard as an answer the opinion of certain half-baked Marxists who believe that under such conditions the thing to do is to refrain from taking power and to wait until capitalism has succeeded in ruining the millions of small and medium producers and converting them into farm labourers and in concentrating the means of production in agriculture, and that only after this would it be possible to consider the assumption of power by the proletariat and the socialization of all the means of production. Naturally, this is a “solution” which Marxists cannot accept if they do not want to disgrace themselves completely.
Nor can we regard as an answer the opinion of other half-baked Marxists, who think that the thing to do would be to assume power and to expropriate the small and medium rural producers and to socialize their means of production. Marxists cannot adopt this senseless and criminal course either, because it would destroy all chances of victory for the proletarian revolution, and would throw the peasantry into the camp of the enemies of the proletariat for a long time.”
The most significant contribution of November Revolution is that it proved that it is not necessary that the revolutions are accomplished first in the industrially developed countries of the Western Europe. Revolutionary conditions can flare up anywhere in any backward, colonial country and the revolutionary forces can not only overthrow colonial rulers there but can also bury capitalism along with it and can establish socialism. This is the reason that it is around 1917 only that communist parties emerged in almost every country and the communist movement reached its zenith. In our country also, the Ghadar movement flourished in the same decade and as a result of this, Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh and his comrades, a band of valiant revolutionaries formed the Hindustan Socialist Republican Army and following the Marxist-Leninist path, not only visualized the rule of the workers-peasants in India but also marched towards that destination. Historical circumstances, however, did not give them the opportunity to form a revolutionary party in this vast country. Communist Party was also formed in the twenties only, even though that party deviated from the path of revolution. Not only this, the colonial rulers who robbed poor countries in a very barbaric manner by colonizing also understood that the freedom struggles of the nations are now going to turn into a revolutionary war against rule of capital and this ultimately led to almost all countries across Asia, Africa and Latin America attain freedom in the post 1917 period. Colonial robbers began winding up their exploitation infra structure fearing Bolshevik Revolution. Success of national movements in all colonial countries has to be attributed to November Revolution also. Not only did the revolutionary forces learn from the November Revolution, but as generally happens, capitalist-imperialist bandits, who were frightened by the revolution, also learnt a lot. It should, therefore, come as no surprise that even fascist organizations were formed in the twenties only. Not only in Italy, Germany, Japan, Spain but the fascist Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) was also established in our country in the twenties. November Revolution was truly an epoch-making event that affected the whole world and will continue to influence it in the future. In fact, no other even in history made such wide spread impact the world over as the glorious November Revolution.
Revisionism is the Real Enemy of Revolutions
The conditions of revolution in Russia had fully matured in November and the Bolsheviks had chosen the right time for the decisive attack, which is why they gained power very easily on 7 November 1917 without any bloodshed. After securing power, however, they had to face very serious troubles one after the other. With every challenge that new proletarian state faced, it not merely came out victorious but got stronger. Immediately after attaining power, the nascent working- class state was subjected to black mailing by the world’s biggest imperialist thug of those days, Germany, in view of Russia’s weakening conditions in the First World War and forced it to sign a very humiliating Brest Litovsk Treaty. After that, socialist Russia had to fight terrible, bloody civil war in which 15 imperialist robber rulers of the world surrounded it as they wanted to finish revolution by aiding and abetting the counter revolutionary forces inside Russia. Under the strong and able leadership of Lenin and Stalin, Bolsheviks drove all the traitors of the revolution to their graves and raised the prestige of the working power in the eyes of the working people around the world. In the twenties there was a bitter class struggle among the peasants in the country side. After death of Lenin in January 1924, his capable successor Stalin spread the revolution to every corner of the country, as well as raised a hungry poor country to the pinnacle glory, both in terms of grain production and industrial production. In thirties, another serious problem had to be fought. Com. Kirov, a senior member of the Central Committee was assassinated on 1 December 1934, and the investigation into that murder found several frightening skeletons of the conspirators, traitors, Trotskyites and mercenaries in the Communist Party colluding with German Nazis, which, if not taken seriously and harshly, would have led to another disaster and would have finished the Soviet Union. Stalin rose to the occasion and enemies of the revolution of all shades and varieties were finished. The biggest challenge, however, was yet to be faced when Nazi Fascists conspired with America, England and France imperialist powers to destroy Soviet power in World War II, in which Hitler launched a fierce attack on the Soviet Union. Soviet Union suffered the incalculable losses of life and property in that fierce world war, but the whole world was stunned when Hitler’s cataclysmic war machine was destroyed to dust by the valiant Russian Red Army and raised the power of the proletariat to the highest glory in history so far. The red flag was waving gloriously over about half of the world. No challenge howsoever insurmountable could dent the nascent socialist state even a bit but after only a couple of years, after Stalin’s tragic death on 5 March 1953, the hidden traitors in the Communist Party, led by Khrushkov, destroyed this fort of the workers’ aspirations. The task which the whole world could not do together was done by the insider traitors and the workers of not only USSR but the whole world felt cheated and devastated. Just like the failure of the Paris Commune, a correct, objective and unbiased assessment of this counter-revolution is the responsibility of the communist movement so that the root of the disease can be diagnosed and treated. This ruthless introspection rising above emotions will strengthen the communist movement and this important task is yet to be accomplished.
The deadly disease of revisionism is very old in the communist movement. The movement cannot be strengthened without effective prevention of this disease. Revisionism is not a new disease, Marx-Engels had to fight this menace since the 1840s itself. In an article titled ‘Marxism and Revisionism’ written on April 3, 1908, Lenin describes how Marx and Engels had to fight attempts to distort Marxism by young Hegelians, Praudon, Bakunin, Bernstein, Narodists, Düring, etc. Leadership of the revisionists afterwards was taken over by Koutsky and Plekhanov and this tribe is flourishing during these days of reaction and eroding the revolutionary movement. Defining the basis of revisionism, Lenin writes,
“There is a well-known saying that if geometric axioms affect human interest then surely an attempt will be made to refute them. Theories of natural history, which clashed with the old preoccupations of theology, met, and are still facing the fierce opposition. It is no wonder, therefore, that Marxist theory, which directly serves to enlighten and organize the advanced classes in modern society, It identifies the tasks to be faced by this class and shows the way for a definite overthrow of the existing system (on the basis of economic development) by a new program. —No wonder this principle has struggled to advance at every stage of its life.”
In fact, apart from the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, capitalism also gives rise to several layers of the middle class. The small-scale production owner, the farmer, however small, is the owner of the capital as well as innumerable small shopkeepers-traders who join the working class at the time of the revolution but are unable to get rid of their middle class, petty bourgeois mentality. They create fertile ground for revisionism. We see every day that many people who have become or are certainly going to join proletariat class, wish to stand away from the workers; I am not a laborer, I am the owner of 2 acres of land, or I have my own shop, or I get one lakh salary every month. This mentality if not cured by taking part in mass movements, drives them to find a middle path between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie. There is no middle path as what appears as ‘middle path’ is, in fact, a bourgeois path that certainly leads to the bourgeois gutter, sooner or later. Concluding his said article, Lenin writes;
“The ideological struggle waged by revolutionary Marxism against revisionism at the end of the nineteenth century is the prelude to the great revolutionary fight of the proletariat, which, despite all the weaknesses and shortcomings of the lower bourgeoisie, is marching towards the ultimate victory of its objective.”
Comrade Stalin had spotted this disease in Soviet Union, had also diagnosed it properly, but history did not give him time to complete this vital task. Responding to Comrade Yaroshenko’s letter and rejecting his request that he be given the task of compiling the ‘Political Economy of Socialism’, Comrade Stalin writes on 20 March 1952, just a year before his death,
“Comrade Yaroshenko is mistaken when he asserts that there is no contradiction between the relations of production and the productive forces of society under socialism. Of course, our present relations of production are in a period when they fully conform to the growth of the productive forces and help to advance them at seven-league strides. But it would be wrong to rest easy at that and to think that there are no contradictions between our productive forces and the relations of production. There certainly are, and will be, contradictions, seeing that the development of the relations of production lags, and will lag, behind the development of the productive forces. Given a correct policy on the part of the directing bodies, these contradictions cannot grow into antagonisms, and there is no chance of matters coming to a conflict between the relations of production and the productive forces of society. It would be a different matter if we were to conduct a wrong policy, such as that which Comrade Yaroshenko recommends. In that case conflict would be inevitable, and our relations of production might become a serious brake on the further development of the productive forces.”
Fears of Com. Stalin, the great leader of the world proletariat, unfortunately, proved to be absolutely correct. The traitor and liar Khrushchev and his gang started overturning every correct policy one by one in the name of fighting the ‘Stalin Cult’ and that dream of the proletariat was shattered, the fort built with blood and sweat of millions of revolutionary workers, collapsed. This is not, however, the last round of fight between the labor and capital. Final decisive battle, the knockout round, is yet to come, and in it, the massive punch of the invincible army of the proletariat, which is rapidly increasing by fast melt down of the middle class and even upper class, will demolish this rapacious, profit driven, inhuman political system known as capitalism as it is only the proletariat who is empowered to take the society forward. Capitalism-imperialism that is holding all means of production captive would be forced to release them as they belong to the whole society. The coming fight back of the proletariat is going to be menacing for the parasite class of the bourgeoisie. Let there be no confusion.
Capitalism cannot be the Final Stage of Human Development, It has to go
On 7 November 1927, the tenth anniversary of the Great November Revolution was celebrated spectacularly in the Soviet Union. Revolutionary leaders from all over the world were invited to a special program in Moscow. There came an open carriage decorated with flowers, which read “Welcome to the Land of Lenin (V Strane Lenine)” which was followed by a tramway to the square decorated to resemble a giant coffin with an inscription surrounded by four candles: “Here lies Russian capitalism, to be joined by world capitalism”. Even though there has been a slight delay because of the traitors within the revolutionary camp but the program stays on course. Capitalism too will be confined to the coffin as predecessors, feudalism and slavery have been done, howsoever hard it’s band masters may be orchestrating. Proletariat is a mighty force. It will weed out traitors and march on. The capitalist-imperialist-fascist robbers cannot escape their ultimate fate. They are today sitting on the gigantic mountains of capital built by the plundered labor of workers but they are simultaneously preparing their own funeral pyres. Production is getting socialized at an unprecedented faster pace now and its individual appropriation is becoming an irritating stumbling block and this ligament is set to burst asunder. ‘Socialism has failed’, Marxism-Leninism is out of date, look what happened to USSR. now only capital’s orgy is going to reign’, the hysteria created by the paid servants and running dogs of the bourgeoisie has died down on its own. Bubbles don’t have long life. The leap from capitalism to socialism is comparatively more difficult than all previous leaps in history as it doesn’t leave any room for the previous tribe of bandits to change their costume and continue robbing as was the reality in all previous revolutions. The point to be noted, however, is that proletariat, the revolutionary class of the present times is far more revolutionary than all other classes on previous occasions. Difficult tasks too are performed, may be with higher energy, may be overcoming more hurdles, may be encountering more reversals.
What else is the combative build-up of the revolutionary forces, if this is not?
Expropriators can buy time but cannot escape expropriation!!
Long live glorious November Revolution.