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From Communism to Anti-Communism

 | 
Andre Liebich
, 
Svetlana Yakimovich

From the Revolution to the Comintern

Tribune on Uritsky Square, Comintern Congress, Petrograd, 19 July 1920

Lars Lih

Texte intégral

The back of the document reads in Russian: “2ой Конгресс III Интернационала. Трибуна на пл. Урицкого” – [“2nd Congress of the III International. Tribune on Uritsky Square”]. Black and white photograph; 11 x 16.5 cm.

1Some of the more notable delegates to the Second Congress appeared on the speakers stand erected at what had once been the Winter Palace and that was then, as it has been since, part of the Hermitage Museum. It stood in front of the huge expanse once called Palace Square and, from 1918 to 1944, Uritsky Square.

2The square was renamed in honor of a martyr of the Revolution, Moisei Uritsky, the head of the Petrograd Cheka or political police who had been assassinated at this location on 30 August 1918. Coupled with the attempt on Lenin’s life the same day, the assassination led to the Red Terror of autumn 1918 in which thousands of people lost their lives. Ironically, Uritsky had been opposed to excessive Cheka repression. He himself was buried in the Field of Mars. Palace Square or Uritsky Square had been the center of revolutionary events in 1917. It was in a corner of the Winter Palace, located behind the speakers’ podium, that ministers of the Provisional Government took refuge before being driven out by Bolshevik insurgents backed by the cruiser Aurora.

3Either here or at another rally on the same day, the cornerstone of a monument to Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht was laid. In his remarks, Paul Levi connected the martyrdom of the German communist leaders to the present occasion: “You are erecting a monument of stone to Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg, but you should know you are building an even better monument: the world revolution that you have initiated. I know, Petrograd workers, that you will raise that monument to completion.”

Bibliographie

Kevin J. Callahan, Demonstration Culture: European Socialism and the Second International, Leicester: Troubadour Publishing, 2010.

John Riddell, ed., Workers of the World and Oppressed People, Unite! Proceedings and Documents of the Second Congress of the Communist International, [vol. 2, The Communist International in Lenin’s Time], New York: Pathfinder, 1991 (Levi quotation p. 140)

Alfred Rosmer, Moscow under Lenin, Introduction by Tamara Deutscher, New York: Monthly Review Press, 1973 [1st French edition, 1951].

Table des illustrations

Légende The back of the document reads in Russian: “2ой Конгресс III Интернационала. Трибуна на пл. Урицкого” – [“2nd Congress of the III International. Tribune on Uritsky Square”]. Black and white photograph; 11 x 16.5 cm.
URL http://books.openedition.org/iheid/docannexe/image/6600/img-1.jpg
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