The Minister with a revolver: “Awful smell of revolution”

The first Soviet government was called “temporary” — until the Constituent Assembly. But after a few days the word “temporarily” forgotten. The Bolsheviks took power was not going to give her.

Before taking the Winter Palace, in the morning at the Smolny Institute opened an emergency session of the Petrograd Soviet of workers ‘and soldiers’ deputies. He came to the podium the Chairman of the Board Leon Trotsky:

On behalf of the Military revolutionary Committee I declare that the Provisional government no longer exists!

In the audience began an ovation.


The crucial night of the October insurrection, Trotsky held on the third floor of the Smolny. From there, he directed the actions of military units. Came to him a member of the Central Committee, Lev Kamenev, who opposed the uprising, considering it a gamble, but felt obliged to be there in a minute.

— Some Ministers arrested, continued Trotsky. — Others will be arrested in the coming hours.

The hall was again applauded.

— Revolutionary garrison, which consisted at the disposal of the Military revolutionary Committee, dissolved the Parliament.

Noisy applause.

— We were told, continued Trotsky, that the revolt of the garrison will cause a pogrom and drown the revolution in torrents of blood. While it went without bloodshed. We don’t know any victims. The Provisional government headed by Kerensky, was dead and expected impact of the broom of history that was supposed to sweep away. The inhabitant was sleeping peacefully and did not know that one power was replaced by another.

And then he saw that the hall Lenin appeared, and announced:

— In our environment is Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, which is due to a number of conditions could not until now appearing in our midst… long live returned to us, comrade Lenin!

Vladimir Ilyich appeared before the public for the first time after a four-month stay underground. On the rostrum seemed to be a stranger — shorn bald and clean shaven. Without the beard and mustache his many didn’t recognize.

Lenin also gave a speech:

— We will have a Soviet government, our own organ of power, without any participation of the bourgeoisie. At the root is broken the old state apparatus of control, and in the face of Soviet organizations… in order to finish this war, you must overcome the most capital… In Russia we must now deal with the construction of the proletarian socialist state. Long live the world socialist revolution!

Hall responded with enthusiastic applause.

In the Tauride Palace was opened the Second all-Russian Congress of Soviets. He took an appeal written by Lenin to the workers, soldiers and peasants, which stated that the Congress takes power in Russia in their hands, and on the ground the power goes to the Soviets of workers’, soldiers ‘and peasants’ deputies. The Mensheviks and the right socialist-revolutionaries protested against “a military coup and seizure of power” and left the Congress.

They objected to Trotsky:

— The revolt of the masses needs no justification; what happened is not a conspiracy, and rebellion. The masses marched under our banner and our insurrection was victorious. And we now offer: give up your victory, go to the concessions, will conclude an agreement. With whom? With those pitiful heaps that are left here? Followed by no one in Russia. You bankrupt, your role is played, and go to where you must now be in the trash basket of history.

Formed the first Soviet government. In the decree of the Congress it is called the “provisional working and peasant government” until the Constituent Assembly. But after a few days the word “temporarily” forgotten. The Bolsheviks took power was not going to give her. The Council of people’s Commissars has received from the Executive Committee the right to issue emergency decrees, that is, government decrees had the force of laws.

No other socialist party did not want to enter into a coalition with the Bolsheviks. Therefore, the first government completely compiled from the Bolsheviks. Its composition determined at a night meeting of the Central Committee of the party in room 36 on the ground floor of the Smolny.


Lenin came into the room, full of people. Prudently settled at the table. Near is still one of the leaders of the party. Place the rest was not enough. Stood or sat directly on the floor.

— Well, if you did something stupid and took power, — somewhat ironically said Lev Kamenev, it is necessary to draw up a Ministry.

— Who have good handwriting? — Lenin was adjusted on a business harmony.

— Vladimir Pavlovich Milyutin — the best of us by the clerk.

The future people’s Commissar of agriculture of Soviet Russia cleared a place at the table. He was armed with pencil and paper.

— Because we call our government? — asked the first question. Ministers then at least stay?

Lenin reasoned aloud:

— Not the Ministers! Vile, strepenne name.

— Could the commissioners be called — suggested Leon Trotsky. — But now too many divorced commissioners. Maybe the high commissioners? No, “Supreme” sound bad. Whether it is “popular”? The people’s Commissars.

Well, it is, perhaps, suitable — approved by Lenin. — And the government in General?

The government called Council of people’s Commissars — proposed Kamenev.

— It’s excellent! — happy Lenin. — Awful smell of revolution. Accepted. Let’s start with the Chairman.

And he suggested:

— Chairman — Trotsky.

Lev Davidovich was like

— It is unexpected and inappropriate.

Lenin insisted:

— Why? You stood at the head of the Petrograd Soviet, which took power.

Trotsky did not agree:

— This post must be occupied by you as the leader of the winning party.

Vladimir Ilyich did not argue:

Then you people’s Commissar for internal Affairs, will crush the bourgeoisie and the nobility. Combating counter-revolution is most important.

Trotsky rejected this offer:

— It would be much better if in the first Soviet revolutionary government is not a single Jew.

Lenin despised anti-Semites, so he snapped:

— Nonsense. All of this nonsense. We have a great international revolution, what importance can have such trifles?

Revolution — the great, — said Trotsky — but fools still have a lot.

— Yes why we at the fool are equals?

— Equal not equal to, and a small discount on the stupidity sometimes have to do what we at the outset the extra complication? I’d rather just continued studying journalism.

There is already opposed by the Secretary of the party Central Committee, Jacob Sverdlov:

— We charge Bukharin.

Practical Sverdlov found work for Trotsky:

— Lev Davidovich need to oppose Europe. Take foreign Affairs.

— What we have now will be foreign Affairs? — shrugged Lenin, like everyone, waiting for the world revolution, but, on reflection, agreed.

People’s Commissar for internal Affairs appointed Alexei Ivanovich Rykov. He pulled out and showed a revolver, which carried. Someone puzzly asked:

— Why you need it?

— That before death at least five of these bastards to shoot.

Further preparation of the government went faster.


On the second day after the victory of the Bolsheviks in the interval between meetings of the Congress of Soviets the Menshevik Nikolai Sukhanov went to a bar where there was a crush at the counter. In a secluded corner met Lev Kamenev, hastily ingested the tea. Asked:

— So you finally decided to rule alone? I think this situation absolutely scandalous. I’m afraid that when you fail, it will be too late to go back.

— Yes, Yes — hesitantly and vaguely said Kamenev, looking at one point. Although… why do we actually fail?

Four of the Commissar-Bolshevik Alexei Rykov (the future Prime Minister), Vladimir Milyutin (before the revolution he was arrested eight times, five times in jail), Victor Nogin (he was an opponent of armed seizure of power) and Ivan Teodorovich (the future Chairman of the Peasant international) — ten days after the October revolution withdrew from the first Soviet government as a matter of principle: the party members did not support their views on “the need for education of the socialist government of all Soviet parties.”

Some of the consequences of this demarche had. In the night from 9 to 10 December 1917, the Bolsheviks agreed to a coalition with the left socialist-revolutionaries, who obtained seven seats in the Council of people’s Commissars and Vice-Commissars and members of the boards. Of those four people’s Commissars, which he then displayed integrity, only one — Nogin — died, very young. The rest of Stalin will eventually be destroyed.

The Commissars put the salary of five hundred rubles (and gain a hundred rubles for each disabled member of the family). Promised to provide housing — “not more than one room per family member”. The housing problem was solved simply. A nice apartment is robbed and given to Soviet officials.

A few days after the revolution, Lenin and Krupskaya went to see an old friend — Margarita Vasilevna Fofanova, a Deputy of the Petrograd Soviet.

— Why so late? — she wondered. Probably the trams no longer go.

Vladimir Ilyich, have already entered the taste of his new position, surprised at her naivete:

— What are you a freak we by car arrived.


Unlike Petrograd, Moscow resisted the Bolsheviks. The Kremlin to take the fight.

Start in the rooms “MK”, 19 December, 9 January, on — in every Monday, and 28 APR, 5 may, 9 June.

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