Lenin and trotsky relationship trust

When Hitler, Trotsky, Tito, Freud and Stalin all lived in the same place - BBC News

lenin and trotsky relationship trust

Yuri Felshtinsky, Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin and the Left Opposition in the USSR, . his own irreplaceability that he had invested all his trust in the revolution itself He by the closeness of the relationship between Lenin and Trotsky. What you also find is that, while Lenin didn't trust Stalin at all and suggested chucking him Trotsky, to Lenin, was "the most capable man in the present [ Central. Two individuals dominated the Russian Revolution: Lenin and Trotsky. Historians have argued ever since who was the more important. The information below.

Lenin's closest colleagues, Krassin, Bogdanov and Lunacharsky, broke away to the "left". The latter two fell under the sway of philosophical mysticism, a further reflection of the mood of despair fostered by the reaction.

The endless faction fights which rent the Social Democracy at this time provoked a reaction in the form of conciliationism, of which Trotsky became the main spokesman. Conciliationism had its adherents in all the groups, the Bolsheviks included.

InTrotsky succeeded in securing a meeting of the leaders of all the factions in an attempt to expel both liquidators and the "Boycotters" to keep the Party together: In the summer ofRosa Luxemburg wrote: Throughout the whole period - the whole of the famous "thirteen or fourteen years" - the prevailing view of the Party activists inside Russia was that the whole Bolshevik-Menshevik split was an unnecessary inconvenience, the product of the poisonous atmosphere of emigre squabbles.

The impression fostered by such people as Johnstone and Deutscher of a Bolshevik Party, united solidly behind the ideas of Lenin, marching steadfastly onwards to the October Revolution, is a mockery of history. Lenin himself, even from the earliest period, complains in his letters of the narrow outlook of the so-called "committee men", or Bolshevik agents in Russia. His complaints become a steady stream of angry protests in the period of against the conduct of his own "supporters" in Russia.

lenin and trotsky relationship trust

Maxim Gorky, who spent this period shuffling around the periphery of Bolshevism, bemoaned in his correspondence with Lenin the "squabbles among the generals" which were "repelling the workers" in Russia. The attitude of the Bolshevik "committee men" to the controversies among the emigres is clearly expressed in a letter which was sent by a Bolshevik supporter in the Caucasus to comrades in Moscow: The attitude of the workers to the first bloc, as far as I know is favourable.

But in general the workers are beginning to look disdainfully at the emigration: That I think is for the best. This contemptuous attitude towards theory, towards the "emigre squabbles", the "storm in a tea cup" was widespread among Bolshevik activists, and provoked heated protests from Lenin, as in the letter, dated Aprilto Orjonikidze, Spandaryan and Stasova: It is a great mistake when people simply dismiss what goes on abroad and 'send it to hell.

The upsurge in the workers movement in Russia in gave fresh heart to the Marxists - and to conciliationist tendencies in the Party. The newly-founded Bolshevik paper Pravda reflected these moods. At the very time when Lenin was waging an all-out battle to separate, once and for all, the revolutionary wing of the Party from the opportunist, the very word 'liquidationism' disappeared from the pages of Pravda.

Alternate History: What If Trotsky Replaced Stalin?

Lenin's own articles were printed in a mutilated form, omitting all polemics against the liquidators; sometimes, they simply disappeared altogether. Lenin's correspondence with Pravda graphically illustrates the state of affairs in Russia: In a letter, dated Octoberburning with indignation at the failure of Pravda to expose the liquidators, Lenin wrote: Pravda is carrying on now, at election time, like a sleepy old maid. Pravda doesn't know how to fight. It does not attack, it does not persecute either the Cadet or the liquidator.

Lenin and Trotsky—What They Really Stood For

In the elections ofsix Bolshevik deputies were elected from the workers' curiae. Lenin, from Poland, warned the six against falling under the influence of the Menshevik deputies: The six must come out with a very clear-cut protest, if they are being lorded over…" Instead the Bolshevik deputies formed a "united faction" with the "Siberians", which issued a joint proclamation - printed in Pravda - calling for the unity of all Social-Democrats and the merging of Pravda with the liquidationist journal Luch.

Together with Gorky, four of the Bolshevik deputies put their names forward as contributors to Luch. Lenin was furious; but his protests went unheeded. In a final burst of exasperation Lenin wrote: We will not reply. They must be got rid of…We are exceedingly disturbed by the absence of news about the plan for reorganising the editorial board…Reorganisation, but better still, the complete expulsion of all the old timers, is extremely necessary.

Things are now in a very bad way. The absence of a campaign for unity from below is stupid and despicable…Would you call such people editors? They are not men but pitiful dishrags and they are ruining the cause. Truly, Lenin set about the task of the creation of a "stable, centralised and disciplined Marxist party" at this time.

In order to build it, he was forced on more than one occasion to fight against the very apparatus he had struggled to build. The "Old Bolsheviks" in For a whole historical period - even more than "thirteen or fourteen years" - Lenin had attempted to educate a leadership, to instil into the cadres of Bolshevism the basic ideas, method and programme of Marxism. Above all, he hammered home the need to keep the workers' movement free from the ideological contamination of bourgeois and petty bourgeois democracy.

He emphasised repeatedly the absolute necessity of the movement retaining complete organisational independence from the parties of bourgeois democracy and from the opportunists who attempted to bring the movement under the wing of the bourgeoisie.

The absolute correctness of Lenin's stand was revealed inwhen the Mensheviks passed over to the camp of bourgeois democracy. What was the position of the "Old Bolsheviks" - of Kamenev, Zinoviev, Stalin and Lenin's other "faithful followers" in ? Every single one of them advocate support for the Kerensky Government, unity with the Mensheviks, that is, abandonment of the camp of Marxism for that of vulgar bourgeois democracy.

Of all the "Old Bolsheviks", whom Lenin had struggled to educate in the previous period, not one of them stood up to the decisive test of events. How was it possible for the leaders of the Bolshevik Party, the Party of Lenin, steeled in struggle, with a correct line from its inception into break at the decisive moment and go over to the side of opportunism?

From Monty Johnstone, the perplexed reader can expect no answer. Our "impartial", "scientific" historiographer knows of no such events! The transition from February to October was evidently accomplished, quite painlessly, by the Bolsheviks "growing over" from the democratic revolution to the socialist: In glaring contradiction to everything Lenin had taught throughout the war, Pravda, which was under the editorship of Kamenev and Stalin, advocated the defence of the Bourgeois-democratic republic: This would not be a policy of peace, but a policy of slavery, which would be rejected with disgust by a free people.

Elsewhere Pravda editorials proclaimed: Our slogan is pressure on the Provisional Government with the aim of compelling it [! This relegation to the remote future of the socialist revolution, while posing as "the immediate task" capitulation to bourgeois liberalism and reformism, is, of course, nothing new to the Communist Party leaders of today, for whom it represents the very essence of "Leninism", as enshrined in "the British Road to Socialism" and the policy of the Popular Front.

It was essentially the same policy as that of the Mensheviks, with whom the "Old Bolsheviks" inevitably found themselves in alliance. How did Lenin, on his return, manage to "mobilise the Bolsheviks for the second stage of the revolution" when all the leading members supported the Provisional Government?

Comrade Johnstone, who passes over the entire episode in silence, is evidently loth to go into the mechanics of this wonderful "mobilisation". It would, however, be extremely "unhistorical" on our part not to offer to fill in the details for him.

lenin and trotsky relationship trust

From abroad, Lenin watched the developments in the Party with alarm. He wrote repeatedly to Petrograd demanding a break with the bourgeoisie and the policy of defencism. On March 6th, he telegraphed through Stockholm: Immediately on his return from exile, Lenin opened up a sharp faction fight against the "Old Bolsheviks". At a meeting of Bolshevik delegates to the Soviets in AprilLenin spoke bitterly of the capitulationist moods that infected the leadership: The main thing that comes to the fore when you read about Russia and see what goes on here is the victory of defencism, the victory of the traitors to socialism, the deception of the masses by the bourgeoisie… "We cannot allow the slightest concession to defencism in our attitude to the war even under the new government which remains imperialist… "Even our Bolsheviks show some trust in the government.

This can be explained only by the intoxication of the revolution. It is the death of socialism. You comrades have a trusting attitude to the government. If that is so our paths diverge. I prefer to remain in a minority… "Pravda demands of the government that it should renounce annexations. To demand of a government of capitalists that it should renounce annexations is nonsense, a crying mockery of… [a break in the minutes] "From the scientific standpoint this is such gross deception which all the international proletariat, all… [a break in the minutes] It is time to admit our mistakes.

We've had enough of greetings and resolutions; it is time to act. Talk, flattery of the revolutionary people, is the only thing that has ruined all revolutions. The whole of Marxism teaches us not to succumb to revolutionary phrases, particularly at a time when they have the greatest currency. Was it Trotsky, who was not even in the country at the time? No, Comrade Johnstone, it was Stalin and Kamenev, those "hardened Bolsheviks", those dedicated "Leninists" who played such an "important role within the Party" in !

Three days before this meeting, Stalin had pronounced in favour of accepting the proposal of the Menshevik Tseretelli for unification of the Bolsheviks and Mensheviks.

His ground for this was that, since both parties agreed on the position of the Manifesto of the Soviet, there were no fundamental differences of principle between the parties. Referring obliquely to this, Lenin issued a sharp warning: This is a betrayal of socialism. I think it is better to remain alone, like Liebknecht: This is the language Lenin had to resort to in order to "mobilise the Bolshevik Party" for the socialist revolution!

After Lenin's tirade, Stalin retired from the stage of public debate heavily compromised by his social-patriotic stand and quietly sidled over to Lenin's position; Kamenev and Zinoviev persisted in their opposition right up to October, when they voted against insurrection and waged a campaign inside and outside the Party against it.

Such was the "important role" played by these "Old Bolsheviks" that, on the eve of the October revolution, Lenin angrily demanded their expulsion from the Party. Monty Johnstone attacks Trotsky for his conciliationism beforebut forgets to mention that Stalin and Co. Having made the point, however, it is necessary to add that, for all their failings, the "Old Bolsheviks" were genuine revolutionaries.

They made a mistake, a fundamental mistake, which, had it not been for the intervention of Lenin and Trotsky would have led to disaster. Without the leadership of Lenin and Trotsky the Russian Revolution would not have taken place in Either a workers' dictatorship or Kornilovite reaction: Without the struggle waged, in particular by Lenin, with all his immense personal authority, the movement would undoubtedly have fallen beneath the mailed fist of reaction.

Nevertheless, despite their weaknesses and vacillations, Kamenev and Zinoviev were not put on trial, were not accused of being "agents of German imperialism", were not tortured to extract false confessions, were not executed. In the traditions of Bolshevism, traditions of tolerance and sense of proportion, Kamenev and Zinoviev were not only not expelled but even elected to the Central Committee and Politburo, the highest positions of responsibility.

Even after that, they did not always act unerringly, and sometimes made disastrous mistakes: The traditions of Stalinist totalitarianism and those of Bolshevik-Leninism were sundered by a river of blood. Trotsky and the Bolsheviks in We have seen how Monty Johnstone utilises the services of Trotsky's "highly sympathetic but also extremely objective biographer", Isaac Deutscher.

Johnstone frequently has recourse to Deutscher, who at once relieves him of the painful necessity of quoting from Trotsky's own works, and obligingly provides him with the sort of trite, literary commonplaces about Trotsky's psychological and moral attributes which serve him as a useful, if rather rusty, nail upon which to hang his own "thesis" on Trotsky, which now triumphantly emerges: His whole work is a fine piece of impressionist word-painting: Clearly, Monty Johnstone is itching to switch the date of Trotsky's joining the Bolsheviks to sometime after the October Revolution "by sleight of hand"as they say.

But no, such a distortion would be too much even for our Jesuit; reluctantly, Trotsky is made to join "under the impetus of the oncoming October Revolution! In fact Trotsky, formally joined the Bolshevik Party, not when it was on the crest of a revolutionary wave, on the point of seizing power, as Johnstone implies, but, on the contrary, when its fortunes appeared to be at a low ebb in the period of reaction following the "July Days" when Lenin was in hiding and many Bolsheviks were in prison.

Why did Trotsky join the Bolsheviks in ? First and foremost, because there were no political disagreements. The article written by Trotsky in America in March coincided in their line of thought with Lenin's Letters from Afar, written in Switzerland at the same time. Was this agreement accidental, Comrade Johnstone? To judge from your one-sided presentation of the past polemics between Lenin and Trotsky, no other conclusion is possible.

But then, what about the lamentable role played by the "Old Bolsheviks" in this period? These were precisely the men who, in your own words, had "fitted themselves into the ranks" and "submitted to collective discipline" for the previous period; was this also "accidental"?

Lenin, in his last letter to the Congressstates that it was not. Nor was it accidental, Comrade Johnstone, that Lenin's most consistent supporter in his fight against the vacillations of the "Old Bolsheviks" in was none other than Trotsky.

The whole purpose of revolutionary theory, of the building of the revolutionary party, is to carry through a revolution.

lenin and trotsky relationship trust

It is precisely the "storms of revolution", in which the revolutionary movement comes under acute pressure from alien class forces, which puts all theories, men and parties to the decisive test. The reason why the "Old Bolsheviks" failed this test, the reason why they found themselves hopelessly adrift in the storm of revolution, is precisely because, in the whole of the previous period they had failed to absorb and understand the methods and ideas of Lenin, which were the methods and ideas of revolutionary Marxism.

The "Old Bolsheviks" had been content, in the previous period, to "fit themselves into the ranks", to follow lamely in the footsteps of Lenin, mechanically repeating his ideas, which in their hands turned into meaningless incantations. The result was that at the decisive moment, when a drastic turn was necessary, they hesitated, "lost their heads", opposed Lenin…and landed in the camp of Menshevism. Trotsky, on the other hand, who had set out on a different course, arrived at the same conclusions which Lenin had reached by another route.

From that moment, all the old disputes were consigned to the rubbish-bin of history…only to be grubbed out again by the Stalinists after Lenin's death in an attempt to oust Trotsky from the leadership.

From the moment of Trotsky's arrival in Petrograd in Mayhe spoke and acted in solidarity with the Bolsheviks. Commenting on this, the Bolshevik Raskolnikov recalled that: Later Stalinist policies that bore great human cost — collectivisation and the Great Terror — were products of amoral calculation, not neuroses or paranoia.

It is confirmed by a mountain of evidence that no amount of revisionist history can gainsay. The main motive of the Purge Trials was to liquidate the Bolshevik Party, to wipe out the entire generation of Old Bolsheviks and thus to consolidate the rule of the bureaucracy. Anyone who could remember the old democratic and internationalist traditions of Leninism was seen as a danger. Like any common criminal Stalin understood the need to eliminate all witnesses.

But there was also a personal motive. Stalin was a mediocrity who could not stand comparison with the Old Bolshevik leaders. Compared with Bukharin, Kamenev and even Zinoviev, let alone a genius like Trotsky, he was a nonentity.

And he knew it. Therefore he entertained feelings of revenge towards the entire generation of Old Bolsheviks. Stalin was a sadist who took a personal interest in tormenting his victims. He brought to Moscow the primitive methods of the Georgian blood feud, in which not only enemies had to be killed but their families also. He carried out Stalin's directives, but not enthusiastically enough for the Leader. Stalin was furious because Yagoda had not obtained confessions to the murder of Kirov from Kamenev and Zinoviev in the trial.

He called him in and said: I already know for a fact that Kirov was murdered on instructions from Zinoviev and Kamenev, but so far you have not been able to prove it! You have to torture them until they finally tell the truth and reveal all their connections.

Between and the average life expectancy was less than two years. Yet the Boss complained that conditions in the camps were too comfortable: Stalin personally checked the list of the victims and decided who would live or die. Out of a total of aboutcases, he personally signed lists, with a total of 40, people. On these lists were the names of all of Lenin's principal lieutenants and comrades-in-arms. Boris Ilizarov, a historian and member of the Russian Academy of sciences has published the sketches that Stalin drew during the long meetings of the Politburo to amuse himself in this way.

One of these grotesque cartoons from depicts the then finance minister Nicolai Bryukhanov hanging from a rope by his genitals: If they hold up he should be considered not guilty as if in a court of law. If they give away he should be drowned in a river. Yes, there are many, and the records were painstakingly analysed by Trotsky with a wealth of documentary evidence, drawn both from his personal archives and many other sources, including the memoirs of Bolsheviks, Stalinists, Mensheviks and particularly Georgian revolutionaries who knew the man intimately.

But is Stremlin right to say that Trotsky attributes the horrors of the Stalinist dictatorship to his childhood experiences. That is simply ridiculous. Either he has not read the book, or he has not understood a single word he has read.

Taken in isolation these tendencies cannot have a decisive significance. Not every child who is abused by a drunken father becomes a sadistic dictator, just as not every unsuccessful artist, resentful at his rejection by Viennese society, becomes Adolf Hitler. For such transformations to occur, great historic events and social convulsions are necessary.

In the case of Stalin it was the ebb of the movement that followed the Russian Revolution, the exhaustion of the masses following the great exertions of the War, Revolution and Civil War and the isolation of the Revolution in conditions of frightful backwardness and poverty that led to the rise of a privileged bureaucracy. The millions of officials that elbowed the workers aside hardened into a privileged caste.

These upstarts needed a Leader who would defend their interests. But this Leader had to be a man with revolutionary credentials — a Bolshevik with a solid pedigree. The Soviet bureaucracy found its representative in Joseph Djugashvili, known to us as Stalin. Nobody knows, except Stremlin, and that is not too sure, either. At that time Lenin was living in Polish exile in Cracow and was almost completely absorbed with his important theoretical work on the national question.

He was keen to get Stalin, a Georgian, to participate in this work, for obvious reasons and gave him intensive briefings on the question. All the ideas on the national question came from Lenin.

Lenin encouraged Stalin to go to Vienna to get the necessary archive material for a lengthy article. Here we meet the first problem. Stalin did not know German or any other foreign language. But all the material he needed was in German, which he could not read. He had to rely on Bukharin, who, unlike Stalin, had a head for theory, knew languages, knew the literature of the subject, knew how to use documents. Bukharin therefore also had a hand in the writing of this work, as is shown also by its academic and rather pedantic style.

Stalin returned with his material to Cracow. Lenin edited and revised the work from top to bottom. Certain phrases, mechanically incorporated by the author, or certain lines, obviously written in by the editor, seem unexpected or incomprehensible without reference to the corresponding works of Lenin Marxism and the National Question was not included in any one- or two-volume Russian version of Stalin's Selected Works Voprosy Leninizmawhich first appeared in This is very strange, since it was virtually the only theoretical work of any importance attributed to Stalin up to that time.

The work was finally reprinted as the lead essay in a Russian topical collection, Markizm i natsional'no-kolonial'nyi vopros, and its English translations in the following year. What were these mysterious misgivings that Stalin was supposed to have had about what was supposed to be his own ideas? Yet again, Boris does not enlighten us. The truth is that the ideas that are more or less correctly expressed in Marxism and the National Question were percent the ideas of Lenin.

While grudgingly accepting the political authority of Lenin he never really accepted those ideas. A fact that Boris Stremlin strenuously avoids mentioning is that Lenin broke with Stalin precisely on the national question.

During his final illness, Lenin became aware of serious deviations in the Party leadership. Despite the strenuous attempts of Stalin to isolate him from reality, Lenin learned of the scandalous conduct of Stalin and his allies, Dzerzhinsky and Ordzhonikidze in Georgia.

Using bureaucratic methods, they had trampled over the national sentiments of the people and oppressed the Georgian Bolsheviks, even using physical violence against Party leaders. He wrote a note addressed to Mdivani, the leader of the Georgian Communist Party, promising the Georgian Bolsheviks his full support against Stalin, Dzerzhinsky, and Ordzhonikidze.

That changed the course of history. It was in fact an organizational post that undoubtedly had a certain importance, but it was by no means a leading political post.

Vladimir Lenin - Wikipedia

The fact that Lenin himself never occupied that position is sufficiently eloquent in that respect. He eventually gave way under pressure from Zinoviev who was attempting to form a bloc with Stalin against Trotsky.

In his last letter Lenin broke off all personal and comradely relations with Stalin. I do not know of any other example of Lenin taking such a drastic step. For this purpose he has recourse to his usual source: This cowardly evasion is quite sufficient to expose a dishonest and unscrupulous method. Krupskaya, who devoted her entire life to the selfless service of Lenin and the Bolshevik Party, would never have betrayed him on his death bed in such a vile way as is insinuated by Sakharov.

But the latter has absolutely no scruples about betraying the historical truth for his own cynical purposes. As if embarrassed by his own source, Stremlin opens the very next sentence with a shamefaced qualification: This is called in the trade facing all ways at once. It is like a little boy who throws a stone and then hides his hand behind his back. The main cause of the bureaucratic degeneration of the Soviet state was the isolation of the revolution in conditions of extreme backwardness.

By this he meant the evils of inequality, corruption, bureaucracy and privilege.

1913: When Hitler, Trotsky, Tito, Freud and Stalin all lived in the same place

But what was the real meaning of the theory of socialism in one country? Up until it was accepted by every Bolshevik that the material conditions for socialism were absent in Russia. That is no accident.

Indeed he contradicted it in dozens of speeches and articles.

Lenin and Trotsky

Lenin and Trotsky knew very well that the material conditions for socialism were absent in Russia. Before nobody questioned this elementary proposition. The Bolsheviks based themselves on the perspective of the extension of the revolution to the advanced capitalist countries of Europe, especially Germany. If the German revolution had succeeded — which it could have in — the entire situation in Russia would have been different. On the basis of a socialist federation, uniting the colossal productive potential of Germany with the immense reserves of raw materials and manpower of Russia, the material conditions of the masses would have been transformed.

Under such conditions the rise of the bureaucracy would have been halted, and the Stalin faction would not have been able to seize power. The morale of the Soviet working class would have been boosted and its faith in the world revolution restored.

We must remember that in the periodthe process of bureaucratic degeneration was by no means consolidated. This fact was reflected in the series of zigzags that characterised the policies of Stalin and his faction both in home and foreign policy throughout this period. InStalin adopted a right-wing policy, characterised by an adaptation to the kulaks rich peasants and NEPmen speculators in Russia and an adaptation to the reformists and colonial bourgeoisie in foreign policy.

This placed the Revolution in grave danger. Internally, it encouraged the kulaks and other bourgeois elements at the expense of the workers. Externally, it led the Communist International to one defeat after another. It was not that Stalin consciously organized the defeat of the German Revolution inor that of the Chinese Revolution in On the contrary, he desired the success of these revolutions.

But the right-wing opportunist policies that he had imposed on the Communist International in the name of Socialism in One Country guaranteed defeat in each case. Dialectically, cause becomes effect and vice-versa. The isolation of the Russian Revolution was the ultimate cause of the rise of the bureaucracy and the Stalin faction. The false policies of the latter produced the defeat of the German and Chinese Revolutions and other defeats in Estonia, Bulgaria, Britain, etc. These defeats further isolated the Revolution and caused deep demoralisation of the Soviet workers, who lost all hope that the European workers would come to their aid.

This led to a consolidation of the bureaucracy and Stalinism, which was only the political expression of the material interests of the bureaucracy. This, in turn, led to further defeats of the international revolution Germany, Spainwhich prepared the ground for the Second World War that placed the USSR in extreme danger. Socialism is the future! Finally we come to the essence of the question. At the end of his article Boris Stremlin asks a very pertinent question: Anxieties regarding socioeconomic polarisation are on the rise, while socialist ideas are experiencing a bit of a renaissance among the youth after having been consigned to the ash heap of history following the Soviet collapse.

Meanwhile, this insurgent upsurge denotes a retreat in the capacity of the bloc of developed Western states to maintain its monopoly over managing world affairs. The fundamental reason for this: The Belarusians said they would mimic whatever model the Russians and the Ukrainians developed. Stalin refused to budge and pushed ahead with his plan for autonomization—only to be stopped in his tracks by Lenin, who sided with the Georgians and Ukrainians.

As far as he was concerned, the inclusion of the republics into the Russian Federation, especially against the will of their leaders, put the Russians in the position of imperial masters, undermining the idea of the voluntary union of nations—and making them little better than the tsarist empire they had overthrown. In his mind, the survival of Soviet rule was closely linked with the success of world revolution, which depended on the rise of the working class in Germany, France and Britain, and then on the nationalist movements in China, India and Western colonies in Asia.

All republics should have 'separate but equal' status Instead of enlarging the Russian Federation, Lenin proposed creating a Union of Soviet Republics of Europe and Asia. Stalin, recognizing that an enlarged Russian Federation would create a poor image for the multinational communist state as a community of equals, proposed simply to turn the Russian government bodies into all-Union ones.

As he saw it, there was no need for another level of bureaucracy. For him, the Union was a matter of principle, not expediency. Some way had to be found to accommodate rising non-Russian nationalism.

Lenin falls from view, but battles from his bed But by the time the Congress was called to order, Lenin disappeared from sight. The year-old leader of the Bolsheviks, who had fought tooth and nail for the creation of the Union, stayed put in his Kremlin apartment, a short walk from the Bolshoi Theatre, where the Congress was holding its sessions. Eight days earlier, on December 12, he had suffered a major stroke and lost control of his right hand and leg.

Although Stalin and many of his supporters, such as Ordzhonikidze and Dzerzhinsky, were non-Russians Stalin and Ordzonikidze hailed originally from Georgia, Dzerzhinsky from PolandLenin accused them of Russian chauvinism. But the stroke prevented him from taking any decisive steps against them. But they also served a political purpose.