published on occasion of the
3rd June 1946
- 70th Day of Death
November 19, 1875 June 3, 1946
Speeches and Works
"The whole history of my life, and in essence the whole history of the working class consists of this: that we have lived and fought under the leadership of Lenin and Stalin."
* * *
Messages of Solidarity
Greeting message of the Comintern (SH)
on occasion of the 70th anniversary of the death of
from June 3, 2016
Mikhail Kalinin was one of the outstanding representatives of the old guard of the Bolsheviks, the party of Lenin and Stalin, a great leader and teacher of the Russian proletariat and the poor peasants.
M. I. Kalinin was born in 1875 in the Tver province. He was a toiling peasant and later worked as a machinist in the Putilov works, where he distinguished himself as a particularly good agitator among colleagues. Late 90s Kalinin was at the head of the group "Combat League for the liberation of the working class" of the Putilov plant and initiated practical revolutionary work in the two largest proletarian districts of the capital Petersburg. In 1898 he joined the RSDLP. In 1899 he was first arrested and sent into banishment. Kalinin supported Lenin's "Iskra" as a correspondent. The "Iskra" fulfilled the function of the cadre factory of the party, where Kalinin was formed as a professional revolutionary. From the outset, he struggled since 1904, with Lenin against Menshevism.
At the outbreak of the 1905 revolution he returned from his second banishment illegally to St. Petersburg and struggled at the head of the Bolshevik organization in the Putilov plant.
1912 Kalinin was a candidate of the Central Committee of the RSDLP. In the spring of 1917, he is one of the leaders of the struggle of the workers and soldiers of Petrograd to overthrow the Tsarist regime. He is a member of the Petrograd Party Committee and the editorial board of "Pravda". Since 1914 Kalinin was in constant contact with Lenin. The Petersburg party committee was more than 30 times smashed by the police, and the Duma faction was arrested. Nevertheless, Kalinin was engaged in maintaining the function of the Russian Bureau of the Central Committee, which could be completely recreated in the autumn of 1916.
In Jahre1920 Kalinin took part as a Russian delegate at the 2nd World Congress of the Communist International in Moscow. He was elected into the presidium and participated actively in the discussion. At the 5th World Congress of the Comintern Kalinin gave a speech on Lenin.
At the VIII. Congress of the RCP (B), Kalinin elected into the Central Committee and became candidate of the Politburo on March 23, 1919. Kalinin spoke as a representative of the Central Committee and the Central Executive Committee in April 1919, to the Red Army soldiers and commanders of the troops who were stationed in Ryazan Governorate. He headed agitation and Instruktionszug "October Revolution" as chairman of the CEC.
In 1919 he traveled throughout Russia. He held 241 lectures and discussions and participated in 290 rallies, on which were a total of 652 510 people in attendance. Before his first ride Kalinin explained:
"My main objective is to approach directly to the counties and districts, to the working people, who are living far from the center, and to meet their needs, and to hear the voice of life itself." ( "Izvestia" [News of the All-Russian Central Executive Committee] - from 1 May 1919)
In the winter of 1920, Kalinin worked for the "Communist subbotnik" in Kharkov. Snowdrifts had brought rail traffic to a halt. Kalin helped to get the track free again, and to load and unload the waggons.
1920 fights Kalinin on behalf of the Central Committee on the southern front against Wrangel, whose troops were completely destroyed.
From 1925 to his death in 1946. He was permanently member of the Politburo of the CC of the CPSU (B). After the death of Sverdlov, Kalinin was elected as chairman of the All-Russian Central Executive Committee - according to the proposal of Lenin. Since 30th of March 1919, Kalin executed the highest organ of the Soviet state, namely for 27 years up to his death.
In his speech in March 1919 Kalinin said:
"For millennia the best minds of mankind wrestle with the theoretical problem of finding forms that enable the peoples to live in friendship and brotherhood, without anguish and mutual fight. Only now and today the first stone is practically placed in this direction. " (Kalin, Volume 1, Moscow 1960, page 359)
On June 3, 1946, Kalinin died from cancer. Kalinin was honored with a large state funeral and Stalin and Molotov carried his coffin towards the Kremlin wall, where he was buried.
During his nearly 50 years of revolutionary activity in the service of the Russian working class and the Bolshevik Party M. I. Kalinin has made a significant creative work in various fields of economic and political life. His special attention was paid to questions of agitation and propaganda, the communist education and the development of culture and science in the first state of workers 'and peasants' government. In particular, Kalinin made in the fight against illiteracy deserves, because without reading and writing, there is no revolutionary progress. Kalinin was president of "Doloi Negramotnosti", founded in the fall of 1923, in which Lenin and Krupskaya were active.
As Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet to Kalinin also made in Great Patriotic War deserves.
Kalinin's speeches and essays also contain for us today a lot of lessons for the educational work among the youth, for the questions connected with the masses a living and creative agitation and propaganda.
The Comintern (SH) takes the 70th anniversary of Kalinin as an opportunity to publish the largest photo collection and the works of Kalinin in different languages of the world. , the Comintern (SH) has created the world's largest online archive in honor of Kalinin. We close our message of greetings with the words of Kalinin:
"The whole history of my life, and above all the entire history of the working class is that we fought under the leadership of Lenin and Stalin."
Long live Mikhail Kalinin!
Long live the Bolshevik Party of Lenin and Stalin!
Long live the motherland of communism - the Soviet Union!
Let us create the socialist world state in the spirit of Kalinin!
Forward to world socialism and world communism!
Long live the socialist world revolution!
Long live Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin and Enver Hoxha!
Long live the Comintern (SH)!
03 - 06 - 2016
* * *
In 1920, Kalinin attended the Second World Congress of the Communist International in Moscow as part of the Russian delegation. He was seated on the presidium rostrum and took an active part in the debates.
* * *
Chairman of the Central Executive Committee
Chairman of the Central Executive Committee
Union of Soviet Socialist Republics
Union for Struggle of the Liberation of the Working Class
Kalinin retired in 1946 and died of cancer on 3 June of that same year in Moscow.
Kalinin was honored with a major state funeral and was buried in the Kremlin Wall Necropolis.
Kalinin, Mikhail Ivanovich
Born Nov. 7 (19), 1875, in the village of Verkhniaia Troitsa, in present-day Kashin Raion, Kalinin Oblast; died June 3, 1946, in Moscow. A prominent figure in the Communist Party and Soviet government. Hero of Socialist Labor (1944). Became a member of the Communist Party in 1898. The son of a peasant.
Kalinin graduated from the village school in 1889. In 1893 he began to work as an apprentice lathe operator at the Staryi Arsenal Munitions Works in St. Petersburg, and in 1896 he became a lathe operator at the Putilov Works. There he organized a Marxist study circle, which joined Lenin’s League of Struggle for the Liberation of the Working Class. In July 1899, Kalinin was arrested in the case involving the League of Struggle, and after ten months’ imprisonment he was deported in April 1900 to Tbilisi, where he worked as a lathe operator in the Central Railroad Shop and joined the central group of the Tbilisi Social Democratic organization. He helped organize the strike of August 1900 and was arrested and imprisoned in the Metekhi Castle. In March 1901 he was deported to Revel (now Tallinn), where he was employed in the Vol’ta Works as a lathe operator and later in a railroad shop. In 1902 he organized a Marxist circle and an underground printing press and was an Iskra agent. In January 1903 he was arrested and confined in the Kresty Prison in St. Petersburg. In July 1903 he was once again deported to Revel, where he was arrested in early 1904 and deported to the town of Povenets in Olonets Province.
In 1905, Kalinin went illegally to St. Petersburg, where he carried out assignments from the Bolshevik center. Granted amnesty in October 1905, he came out into the open and functioned legally as the head of the Bolshevik organization at the Putilov Works; he was elected a member of the Narva raion committee of the RSDLP. He helped to organize the fighting druzhiny and was a member of the raion battle staff. In December 1905 he was one of the organizers of the strike by workers at the Putilov Works in solidarity with the insurrection of the Moscow workers. In 1906 he worked at a pipe factory and was elected to the St. Petersburg committee of the RSDLP. As a delegate to the Fourth Congress of the RSDLP in 1906, he supported the Leninist line. From 1908 to 1910 he worked in Moscow as a fitter at the Lubianka power plant and the Miusy streetcar station, carrying on active party work. In September 1910 he was arrested and deported in November to his home village. In 1911 and 1912, while working as a patternmaker at a cannon foundry in St. Petersburg, he was a member of the St. Petersburg committee of the RSDLP and led the party organization in the Vyborg raion.
At the Sixth (Prague) Conference of the RSDLP in 1912, Kalinin was elected a candidate member of the Central Committee of the RSDLP and placed on the Russian Bureau of the Central Committee. He participated in the founding of the newspaper Pravda and assisted the work of the Bolshevik faction in the Fourth State Duma. In the summer of 1912 he led a strike by the workers in the cannon foundry. From 1913 to 1915 he worked at the Aivaz plant, continuing his party activities. In January 1916 he was arrested in the case involving the Petrograd Committee of the RSDLP, and after a year of imprisonment he was sentenced to exile in Eastern Siberia but managed to go into hiding and continue his party work illegally in Petrograd. He took an active part in the February Revolution of 1917 and was a member of the first legal Petrograd Committee of the Bolsheviks and the representative of this committee on the bureau of the Central Committee of the RSDLP (Bolshevik). He was a member of the editorial staff of Pravda. In September 1917 he was elected councillor (glasnyi) of the Petrograd municipal duma and chairman of the raion board of the Lesnovskii Raion, in whose offices was held the Oct. 16, 1917, session of the Central Committee of the RSDLP(B) that adopted the resolution for armed uprising.
After the victory of the October Revolution, Kalinin was elected to the Petrograd municipal duma, which chose him to be mayor (gorodskoi golova). In 1918 he worked as commissar of municipal services in Petrograd. In March 1919, at the Eighth Congress of the RCP (Bolshevik), he was elected to the party’s Central Committee. After the death of Ia. M. Sverdlov he was elected chairman of the All-Russian Central Executive Committee. On Mar. 30, 1919, in recommending Kalinin for this post, V. I. Lenin said: “Here we have a comrade who has been engaged in party work for nearly 20 years. He is a peasant from Tver’ Province, who has close connections with peasant farming…. Petrograd workers have witnessed his ability to approach wide sections of the working masses” (Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 38, p. 224). During the Civil War of 1918–20, Kalinin carried on important agitation and propaganda work among the workers, peasants, and Red Army soldiers. He was in charge of the October Revolution propaganda train, which made 12 trips through the central regions of Russia, the Ukraine, the Northern Caucasus, Siberia, and virtually all the fronts of the Civil War. In December 1922, after the formation of the USSR, Kalinin was elected chairman of the Central Executive Committee of the USSR. After the Fourteenth Congress of the ACP (Bolshevik) in 1925 he was placed on the Politburo of the party’s Central Committee. From January 1938 to March 1946 he was chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR and after that continued to be a member of the Presidium.
Kalinin had an enormous range of experience and knew the life of the people intimately. He was instrumental in strengthening the alliance of the workers and peasants and in building the Soviet state. The “all-Union peasant elder” was the term of endearment that the Soviet working masses had for him. Kalinin wrote many works on various questions of socialist construction, communist education, and literature and art, in all of which he propounded the ideas of Marxism-Leninism. His speeches and articles devoted special attention to the tasks of developing a socialist world view among the young and of training youth in the spirit of communist morality. In 1931 the city of Tver’ was renamed in honor of Kalinin, and many raions and settlements also bear his name. His awards include two Orders of Lenin and two Orders of the Red Banner, as well as many medals. He is buried on Red Square. A memorial museum for Kalinin was opened in Moscow in 1946.
LENIN ON KALININ
V. I. Lenin
On The Candidacy Of M. I. Kalinin
For The Post Of Chairman
Of The All-Russia Central Executive Committee
Speech At The Twelfth Session Of The All-Russia Central Executive Committee March 30, 1919
Delivered: 30 March, 1919 First Published: Brief report published in the newspaper Izvestia No. 70, April 1, 1919; First published in run In 1932; Published according to the verbatim report
Source: Lenin’s Collected Works, Volume 29, pages 233-236
Comrades! To find a person who could take the place of Comrade Yakov Mildiailovich Sverdlov in full is an exceedingly difficult task, for it is next to impossible for any one man to he at once a leading Party worker, moreover one who knows the history of the Party, and an excellent judge of people capable of choosing leading functionaries for the Soviets. It would be impossible to expect any one comrade to assume all the functions that Comrade Sverdlov took care of alone—on this all were agreed when candidacies were discussed in the Party—and hence we shall have to entrust the various functions to whole collegiums that will meet daily and direct the different spheres of work. As far as the chairman is concerned, we must ensure that he expresses the Party line in respect of the peasantry.
You know that our approach to the middle peasants as set forth at the Party Congress introduces no change in our general policy. The tasks we have outlined in regard to the middle peasants must be carried out once our primary problem—the suppression of the bourgeoisie—has been solved. The question of the attitude to the middle peasants is a more acute problem for us than for our comrades in Europe, and we must make sure that we have at the head of the Soviet state a comrade who can demonstrate that our decision in this matter will really be carried out.
I believe that we can and must find a comrade who will devote himself wholly to carrying out the line of the leading Party in respect of the middle peasants. We know that at present the problem of gathering and transmitting information is particularly acute. We know that the break-down of transport facilities and the existence of civil war, which at times interrupts communications between the centre and entire regions, not to speak of separate gubernias—we know that under the circumstances this problem requires special attention.
We know that we can solve this problem if we find a comrade with the necessary experience and knowledge of the life of the middle peasants, and I believe that the candidacy of which you read in today’s papers meets all these requirements. This is the candidacy of Comrade Kalinin.
Here we have a comrade who has been engaged in Party work for nearly twenty years. He is a peasant from Tver Gubernia, who has close connections with peasant farming which he constantly renews and freshens. Petrograd workers have witnessed his ability to approach wide sections of the working masses who had had no Party experience; where other propagandists and agitators failed to find the right, comradely approach to them, Comrade Kalinin succeeded. All this is especially important at the present time. Of course, the middle peasantry as a whole, all the best elements among them, are giving us the resolute support that will overcome all difficulties and put down the revolt of the rural kulaks and that insignificant minority of the rural masses who follow them. We know that our main task in a country of small peasants is to ensure an indestructible alliance of the workers and the middle peasants. Our agrarian measures—complete abolition of landed proprietorship and determined assistance to the middle peasants—have already produced results, and in the course of the past year have led to an increase in the number of middle peasants. But in the localities people have frequently been appointed to administrative posts who were not up to the job.
There have been cases of abuses, but we are not to blame for them. We know that we have (lone everything we could to enlist the intelligentsia, but there were political differences that kept us apart. We know that the epoch of bourgeois parliamentarism has ended, that the sympathy of the workers of the whole world is with Soviet power, and that the victory of Soviet power is inevitable, no matter how many proletarian leaders the bourgeoisie may kill, as they are doing in Germany. The sum total of their experience will, in the long run, inevitably bring the intelligentsia into our ranks, and we shall acquire the material with which we can govern. We shall see to it that alien elements who have attached themselves to Soviet power are removed—indeed, they are one cause of dissatisfaction which we are not afraid to admit is legitimate. We must pay maximum attention to the fight against this evil. At the Party Congress we decided firmly to make this line of conduct obligatory for all functionaries.
We must say that we see no way of introducing socialist farming other than through a series of comradely agreements with the middle peasants, to whom we must turn more and more often.
We know also that comrades who bore the brunt of the work in the period of the revolution and were completely engrossed in this work, were unable to approach the middle peasants as they should have, they could not avoid making mistakes, each of which was seized upon by our enemies, each of which gave rise to certain doubts and complicated the middle peasant’s attitude toward us.
That is why it is very important for this purpose to find a comrade possessing the qualities I have mentioned. We must help him with our organisational experience, so that the middle peasants should see that they have one of their own as the highest functionary in the whole Soviet Republic, so that the decision of our Party calling for a proper approach to the middle peasant and declaring our resolve to examine, study every step we make and test it in the light of the experience we have gained will not remain on paper.
We know that the numbers of our allies are growing, that they will increase many times over in the next few months, but for the time being the burden rests wholly on our country, which is greatly ruined and impoverished. The load is more than the middle peasant can carry. We must go to him and do everything we can, we must make him understand and show him in practice that we are firmly resolved to carry out the decisions of our Party Congress.
That is why the candidacy of a man like Comrade Kalinin ought to have the unanimous support of us all. His candidacy will enable us to organise practically a series of direct contacts between the highest representative of Soviet power and the middle peasants; it will help to bring us closer to them.
This aim cannot be achieved at once, but we have no doubt that the decision we propose to make will be the correct one, though we know that we have little practical experience in this respect. Let the highest representative of the Soviet Republic himself be the first, with our joint assistance, to begin acquiring this experience, gather the full sum of knowledge, and check up; then we can be certain that we shall solve the task facing us, that Russia will become not only the model of a country where the dictatorship of the proletariat has been firmly established and the bourgeoisie ruthlessly suppressed—this has already been done-but also the model of a country where the relations between the urban workers and the middle peasants are satisfactorily arranged oil the basis of comradely support and new experience; this is one of the main guarantees of the complete victory of the proletarian revolution.
That is why I take it upon myself to recommend to you this candidacy—the candidacy of Comrade Kalinin.
V. I. Lenin
Insertions for V. Kalinin’s Article “The Peasant Congress”
No. 25 of Proletary on November 16 (3), 1905, carried V. A. Karpinsky’s article “The Peasant Congress”, signed V. Kalinin. Lenin edited the article and made two insertions. p. 177
Wesee, consequently, that class-conscious socialists must unconditionally support the revolutionary struggle of all, even the prosperous, peasants against the officials and landowners, but class-conscious socialists must make the clear and straightforward statement that the “general redistribution”  the peasants want falls very far short of socialism. Socialism demands the abolition of the power of money, the power of capital, the abolition of all private ownership of the means of production, the abolition of the commodity economy. Socialism demands that the land and the factories should be handed over to the working people organising large-scale (instead of scattered small-scale) production under a general plan.
Thepeasant struggle for land and liberty is a great step towards socialism, but it is still a very far cry from socialism itself.
Thetactical resolution adopted by the Congress is truly astounding by its meagreness. We are inclined to think that there some of the peasant well-wishers (liberals) must have done some more “explaining”.
Hereis the resolution:
“Theactivity of the Peasant Union, depending on local conditions, may be either open or secret (conspiratorial). All members of the Union must spread their views and seek to realise their demands in every possible way, being undeterred by the resistance on the part of the Zemstvo chiefs, the police and other authorities. Among other things, they are insistently advised to make use of their right to draw up public decisions at village and volost meetings and private gatherings concerning improvements in state amenities and improvement of the people’s welfare.”
Thatkind of resolution is extremely unsatisfactory. Instead of a revolutionary call for an uprising, it merely gives liberal advice of a general sort. Instead of organising a revolutionary party, the resolution only organises an annex to the liberal party. The progress of the movement itself will inevitably and inescapably split up the liberal landowners and the revolutionary peasants, and we Social-Democrats will try to accelerate this split.
Inhis article “The Agrarian Programme of Russian Social-Democracy”, Lenin said that the demand for a general redistribution, together with the reactionary utopian idea of perpetuating small-scale peasant production, also had its revolutionary side, namely, “the desire to sweep away by means of a peasant revolt all the remnants of the serf-owning system” (present edition, Vol. 6, p. 139).
Later,at the Second Congress of the R.S.D.L.P., Lenin said: = “We are told that the peasants will not be satisfied with our programme and will go further. But we are not afraid of that; we have our socialist programme for that eventuality, and consequently are not afraid even of a redistribution of the land” (present edition, Vol. 6, p. 497). p. 177
V. I. Lenin
To: M. I. KALININ
Written: Written on November 12, 1920
Published: First published in 1945 in Lenin Miscellany XXXV. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Volume 45, page 49b.
Translated: Yuri Sdobnikov
The Siberian Concessions Committee was set up by a C.P.C. decision of October 30, 1920, and on November 16 it submitted its draft decree to the C.P.C. The latter appointed an ad hoc committee (V. I. Lenin, D. I. Kursky, A. M. Lezhava, V. P. Milyutin and S. P. Sereda) to rework and edit the draft decree within a week. On November 23, the C.P.C. adopted a decree on concessions and approved the committee’s proposal to publish a pamphlet on concessions. At the end of 1920, it appeared under the title 0 kontsessiyakh. Dekret Soveta. Narodnykh Komissarov ot 23 noyabrya 1920 g. Tekst dekreta. Obyekty kontsessii. Karty. (On Concessions. Decree of the Council of People’s Commissars of November 23, 1920. Text of the Decree. Concessions’ Objects. Maps.)
I am sending you the draft resolutions on the Siberian concessions which have been passed by the committee (these drafts will be submitted to the Council of People’s Commissars for approval possibly next week). One other question, namely, that of food concessions, has still to be worked out in sufficient detail.
Will you press forward with this matter on the lines we discussed today.
V. I. Lenin
Motion for the Politbureau of the C.C., R.C.P.(B.) on
M. I. Kalinin’s Trip to the Ukraine
Dictated: Dictated over the telephone January 27, 1922
Published: First published in 1945 in Lenin Miscellany XXXV. Printed from the secretary’s notes.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Volume 42, page 389.2.
Translated: Bernard Isaacs
Lenin’s proposal on Kalinin’s trip to the Ukraine was adopted by the Politbureau on January 28. Kalinin made the trip on February 7-18 and March 5-18, 1922, with the agittrain “October Revolution” along the route: Poltava— Mirgorod— Kiev— Belaya Tserkov— Kremenchug— Odessa— Zhmerinka—- Kamenets Podolsk— Vinnitsa— Berdichev— Zhitomir.
Pleaseput to the vote of the Politbureau the following motion: that Comrade Kalinin be directed immediately to make a round of the richer grain gubernias of the Ukraine to collect aid for the victims of the famine. The expedition to be fitted out with great thoroughness to enable it to carry out effective agitation for relief collections by means of photographs, films, demonstration of witnesses and sufferers from the famine-stricken areas, etc. Personal responsibility for the practical organisation of the expedition to be imposed upon
1.Kalinin for the political side of the business
2.a specially appointed practical worker endorsed by the Politbureau who would really be capable of putting through and organising the business properly.
Kalinintogether with the whole expedition shall leave within 3 days.
Lenin said on Kalinin:
“Here we have a comrade who has been engaged in party work for nearly 20 years. He is a peasant from Tver’ Province, who has close connections with peasant farming…. Petrograd workers have witnessed his ability to approach wide sections of the working masses” (Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 38, p. 224).
Kalinin delivered a report on Lenin and the Comintern to the Fifth World Congress in 1924.
- DOCUMENTS ON KALININ -
To Michael Kalinin
- 1946 -
- 1932 -
You must remember that we persecute nobody for religion. We regard religion as an error and fight it with education.
The national question is purely a peasant question...the best way to eliminate nationality is a massive factory with thousands of workers..., which like a millstone grinds up all nationalities and forges a new nationality. This nationality is the universal proletariat.
For thousands of years humankind's finest minds have been struggling with the theoretical problem of finding the forms that would give peoples the possibility, without the greatest of torment, without internecine strife, of living side by side in friendship and brotherhood. Practically speaking, the first step in this direction is only being taken now, today.
But even now, after the greatest victory known to history we cannot for one minute forget the basic fact that our country remains the one socialist state in the world. You will speak frankly about this to the collective farmers...
Only the most concrete, most immediate danger, which threatened us from Hitlerite Germany, has disappeared.