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Draft Resolutions for the Unity Congress of the R.S.D.L.P


Soviets of Workers' Deputies

V. I. Lenin


(1) Soviets of Workers' Deputies spring up spontaneously in the course of mass political strikes as non-party organisations of the broad masses of the workers;

(2) in the course of the struggle, these Soviets inevitably undergo a change both as regards their composition, by absorbing the more revolutionary elements of the petty bourgeoisie, and as regards the nature of their activities, by growing from purely strike organisations into organs of the general revolutionary struggle;

(3) insofar as these Soviets are rudiments of revolutionary authority, their strength and importance depend entirely on the strength and success of the insurrection;

We are of the opinion, and propose that the Congress should agree:

(1) that the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party should participate in non-party Soviets of Workers' Deputies, unfailingly form the strongest possible groups of Party members in each Soviet, and direct the activities of these groups strictly in accordance with the general activities of the Party;

(2) that the formation of such organisations for the purpose of increasing Social-Democratic influence on the proletariat, and the influence of the proletariat on the course and outcome of the democratic revolution, may, in certain conditions, be left to the local organisations of our Party;

(3) that the broadest possible sections of the working class, and also of representatives of the revolutionary democrats, particularly peasants, soldiers and sailors, should be induced to take part in the non-party Soviets of Workers' Deputies;

(4) that as the activities and sphere of influence of Soviets of Workers' Deputies expand, it must be pointed out that these institutions are bound to collapse unless they are backed by a revolutionary army and unless the government authorities are overthrown (i.e., unless the Soviets are transformed into provisional revolutionary governments); and that therefore one of the main tasks of these institutions in every revolutionary situation must be to arm the people and to strengthen the military organisations of the proletariat.

Published: Published in Partiiniye Izvestia, No. 2, March 20, 1906.
Published according to the newspaper text.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1965, Moscow, Volume 10, pages 156-157.

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