Lenin on the Kulaks

“We all know who that internal enemy is. It is the capitalists, the landowners, the kulaks, and their offspring, who hate the government of the workers and working peasants-the peasants who do not suck the blood of their fellow-villagers.

A wave of kulak revolts is sweeping across Russia. The kulak hates the Soviet government like poison and is prepared to strangle and massacre hundreds of thousands of workers. We know very well that if the kulaks were to gain the upper hand they would ruthlessly slaughter hundreds of thousands of workers, in alliance with the landowners and capitalists, restore back-breaking conditions for the workers, abolish the eight-hour day and hand back the mills and factories to the capitalists.

That was the case in all earlier European revolutions when, as a result of the weakness of the workers, the kulaks succeeded in turning back from a republic to a monarchy, from a working people’s government to the despotism of the exploiters, the rich and the parasites. This happened before our very eyes in Latvia, Finland, the Ukraine and Georgia. Everywhere the avaricious, bloated and bestial kulaks joined hands with the landowners and capitalists against the workers and against the poor generally. Everywhere the kulaks wreaked their vengeance on the working class with incredible ferocity…

There is no doubt about it. The kulaks are rabid foes of the Soviet government. Either the kulaks massacre vast numbers of workers, or the workers ruthlessly suppress the revolts of the predatory kulak minority of the people against the working people’s government. There can be no middle course. Peace is out of the question: even if they have quarrelled, the kulak can easily come to terms with the landowner, the tsar and the priest, but with the working class never.

That is why we call the fight against the kulaks the last, decisive fight. That does not mean there may not be many more kulak revolts, or that there may not be many more attacks on the Soviet government by foreign capitalism. The words, the last fight, imply that the last and most numerous of the exploiting classes has revolted against us in our country.

The kulaks are the most brutal, callous and savage exploiters, who in the history of other countries have time and again restored the power of the landowners, tsars, priests and capitalists. The kulaks are more numerous than the landowners and capitalists. Nevertheless, they are a minority…

Ruthless war on the kulaks! Death to them! Hatred and contempt for the parties which defend them-the Right Socialist-Revolutionaries, the Mensheviks, and today’s Left Socialist-Revolutionaries! The workers must crush the revolts of the kulaks with an iron hand, the kulaks who are forming an alliance with the foreign capitalists against the working people of their own country.”

 — Lenin, “Comrade Workers, Forward To The Last, Decisive Fight!” August 1918, in Lenin, V.I. Collected Works. Vol. 28. Moscow: 1965., pp. 53-57.

One response to “Lenin on the Kulaks

  1. Yes!

    Death to kulaks! That was the right slogan & it remains the right slogan! Never a step backwards! No compromise!

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