Letter to Inessa Armand, After March 15, 1914

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...[1] It would be good now to have a Ukrainian Social-Democratic group of our own, however small. Write whether you could make contacts and do something in this direction.

What a magnificent victory at the Insurance Council elections![2] Delightful! Try and lancer[3] a report about this in the French socialist (or trade union) press. And how much better-looking Pravda has become under brother[4] —it’s getting to be a real beauty! It does you good to look at it. For the first time we see the hand of a cultured, knowledge able editor on the spot.

What impression did le geste de M-me Caillaux[5] make on you? Frankly, I can’t get rid of a certain feeling of sympathy. I thought only venality, cowardice and meanness were rife in these circles. And suddenly this plucky woman goes and delivers, a resolute le\c con!! I wonder what the jury will have to say and what the political consequences will be. Will Caillaux resign? Will the Radicals be overthrown?

All the very best,



  1. The beginning of this letter is missing. The manuscript is available from p.3.—Ed.
  2. Elections to the Insurance Council in St. Petersburg were bold on March 2 (15), 1914. A sharp struggle developed around these elections between the Bolsheviks on the one hand, and the liquidators and Socialist-Revolutionaries on the other. The liquidators suffered complete defeat at these elections, three-fourths of the electors’ meeting declaring in favour of the Bolsheviks’ electoral platform and rejecting that proposed by the bloc of the liquidators and Socialist-Revolutionaries. The defeat of the liquidators was further demonstrated at the elections to the All-Russia Insurance Agency. Of the 57 delegates 82 per cent were Pravdists.
  3. Insert—Ed.
  4. This word is in English in the original.—Ed.
  5. M-me Caillaux—the wife of Joseph Caillaux, French statesman, Radical, Minister of Finance in 1913. In response to the hounding campaign raised against him by the nationalist Gaston Calmette editor of Le Figaro, M-me Caillaux fired at Calmette in March 1914 and mortally wounded him. Joseph Caillaux was obliged to resign.