Editor's Choice

The historians and the Bolsheviks

On Tsarism, the bourgeois liberals under Tsarism, the Provisional Government in 1917, the Whites in the Civil War, and even the Mensheviks and the SRs, what Figes has to say is pretty much what the Bolsheviks said of them. Thus, for example: “Trotsky described Martov as the ‘Hamlet of Democratic Socialism’ – and this is just about the sum of it… [His qualities] made him soft and indecisive when just the opposite was required”.

1864: the First International

A hundred and fifty years ago, on 28 September 1864, the working-class movement took a huge step forward with the founding of the International Working Men’s Association.

A meeting at the St Martin’s Hall in London brought together radical and socialist delegates from around Europe, to set up the organisation which would become known as “The First International”.

Revolution + 100

2019 is the centenary of the year in which British workers had probably their greatest opportunity to make a revolution.

Inspired by the Bolshevik revolution in Russia, British workers struck more than ever before, servicemen and police mutinied, and Labour took big strides electorally. But communists in Britain had still not formed a united party, Labour’s representation in Parliament was unfairly small and politically rubbish, and the trade unions were still dominated by bureaucrats.

Reading about Rosa Luxemburg

As we go to press on 15 January 2019, it is exactly the 100th anniversary of the murder of the Polish¬German revolutionary socialist Rosa Luxemburg. She was killed by a right-wing militia operating under the Social¬Democratic government which was heading off the German workers’ revolution.

We have a pamphlet in production on Luxemburg and the German revolution. Readers can also find a good summary of Luxemburg’s political work in two articles, from 1935 and 1938, by Max Shachtman.

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