[Marxism] Full text of "The Great Ukrainian Jacquerie"

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Mon May 12 11:04:24 MDT 2014

Like the Directory, the Bolsheviks failed to win leadership over
the diverse elements of the Jacquerie. Both political groups rose
to power in the Ukraine on a wave of aroused peasants; both were
then deserted because of the failure to satisfy peasant expectations,
and both subsequently had to defend themselves against the very
people they presumed to lead. In the case of the Bolsheviks, the
revulsion began almost as soon as they appeared in the Ukraine,
and to a very great extent Bolshevik programs and policies were to
blame. Thus, while they came preaching committee or soviet gov-
ernment, the system that they established was at variance with
popular concepts of self-government. Instead of permitting the
formation by villagers of their own elected Soviets, to be composed
of whatever group held local leadership, the Communists decreed
the formation of pro-Bolshevik Soviets or appointed revkomy
(local Communist action groups), thus making it clear from the
start that local "soviets" would be controlled by the Communist
government of the Ukraine and manned exclusively by Bolsheviks.
No other groups or parties were to be allowed to participate unless
they explicitly accepted Bolshevik precepts.


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