In this short essay written during the 1920s, Max Nettlau discusses the psychological and political impacts of the success of the Soviet dictatorship and the eclipse of libertarian socialism on the workers of Europe, claims that the “taste for freedom” is “almost dead”, predicts that any European revolution in the circumstances of his time would be an authoritarian revolution, and calls for a worldwide libertarian initiative to “create a new mentality” that should embrace all those “movements that still have a basis in voluntarism, free association, federation, the coexistence of various opinions, free experimentation, abstention from the state, and real internationalism”.
After Six Years of Authoritarian Revolution - Max Nettlau
Eduard Martynovich Dune, a member of the opposition group "Democratic centralism". For his opposition activities he was arrested and spent many years in Vorkuta. Fled during the Second World war. Analysis made in 1947 for the Menshevik émigré organ "Socialističeskij Vestnik". Died in 1953. Source: Archive of L.D. Trotsky, vol. 2 ; Chernyavskiy, Felshtinsky.
Also see Dune's Notes of a Red Guard.
This article tries to go beyond the usual Kronstadt debate between Trotskyists and anarchists on why the Russian revolution failed. It includes sections on: workers' control, soviet democracy, the Red Terror, the 1921 workers' revolt and 'Stalinism'.
BEYOND KRONSTADT - THE BOLSHEVIKS IN POWER
An understanding of the Russian revolution is vital for any understanding of why the left failed in the 20th century. Yet most discussion amongst revolutionaries never goes beyond the usual argument about the Kronstadt rebellion.
First published in Spain in 1924, Angel Pestaña’s journal recounting his experiences in Russia in the summer of 1920 as the delegate sent by the Spanish anarchosyndicalist Confederación Nacional del Trabajo (the CNT) to the Second Congress of the Third International, which he represents as “an objective accounting”, features encounters with Victor Serge, Peter Kropotkin, Lenin, Zinoviev, Lozovsky and Tomsky; while critical of the “mistakes” of the Bolsheviks, Pestaña ultimately absolves them of the greatest share of responsibility for the suffering of the Russian people, which he attributes to the blockade and civil war imposed and underwritten by the Western Democracies.
How Lenin wrote State and Revolution in order to extract the political project advanced by the autonomous struggles of the Russian proletariat during the July Days.
By the first days of July 1917, tensions in the Russian capital were the highest they had been since the February Revolution that deposed the Tsar, announced a Provisional Government, and gave birth to a new wave of soviets.
A short film about the Kronstadt rebellion of 1921 against the Bolshevik dictatorship.
Recently I made this short film about the Kronstadt rebellion. It is not intended as a comprehensive history of the heroic and tragic events of 1921. Instead I hope it serves as a brief overview of the revolt which will be of particular interest to those researching it for the first time.
Account of the Russian revolution written by Victor Serge, a Bolshevik who had become disillusioned with anarchism. We do not necessarily agree with it all but reproduce it for reference.