Extraordinary Sixth All-Russian Congress of Soviets of Workers
Extraordinary Sixth All-Russian Congress of Soviets of Workers’, Peasants’, Cossacks’, and Red Army Deputies
a congress held from Nov. 6 to Nov. 9, 1918, in Moscow. The congress was attended by 1,296 delegates, of whom 963 were voting delegates. Of the voting delegates, 946 were Communists, 16 were members of other parties, and one was an unaffiliated delegate.
The agenda of the congress included elections to the All-Russian Central Executive Committee and a series of reports. V. I. Lenin delivered two of the reports, one dealing with the anniversary of the revolution and the other with the international situation. L. D. Trotsky spoke on military affairs; G. E. Zinoviev reported on building Soviet power in the central region of the country, on committees of the poor (kombedy), and on local soviets; and D.I. Kurskii spoke on the observance of socialist legality
In his reports, Lenin summed up the principal achievements of the first year of Soviet power and outlined a program for Soviet domestic and foreign policy. The congress noted in its resolution On the International Situation that the international bourgeoisie was consolidating forces to suppress the growing revolutionary movement in capitalist countries and to stifle Soviet power in Russia. The resolution stressed the need to devote serious attention to strengthening the Red Army.
The congress approved proposing peace negotiations to the states waging war against Russia—the USA, Great Britain, France, Italy, and Japan. It saluted “all workers, peasants, and soldiers around the world who are fighting for peace and socialism, and their leaders,” and it commended the Red Army and, for taking the city of Izhevsk, the Red Army soldiers and commanders of the Second Army of the Eastern Front. At the suggestion of the congress of committees of the poor of Severnaia Oblast, the delegates adopted the decree On the Organization of Model Regiments of Rural Poor. These regiments would draw from among “the most steadfast and reliable defenders of workers’ and peasants’ power.”
With an eye to consolidating Soviet power, the congress adopted the decree On Amnesty, which released political prisoners who represented no danger to the Soviet republic. In the decree On Building Soviet Power in the Central Region, on Committees of the Poor, and on Local Soviets, the congress summarized the work of the committees of the poor and commissioned them to conduct new elections in all volost (small rural district) and village soviets. In the decree On Revolutionary Legality, the delegates called on all citizens of the republic, all bodies of Soviet power, and all public officials to observe the laws of the Soviet state strictly. The congress elected a new All-Russian Central Executive Committee, which consisted of 207 members and 39 candidate members.
REFERENCESLenin, V. I. “Rech’ o godovshchine revoliutsii 6 noiabria.” Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed. vol. 37.
Lenin, V. I. “Rech’ o mezhdunarodnom polozhenii 8 noiabria.” Ibid.
Shestoi Vserossiiskii chrezvychainyi s”ezd Sovetov rabochikh, krest’ianskikh, kazach’ikh i krasnoarmeiskikh deputatov: Stenografich. otchet. Moscow, 1919.
S“ezdy Sovetov Soiuza SSR, soiuznykh i avtonomnykh Sovetskikh Sotsialisticheskikh Respublik, vol. 1. Moscow, 1959.
Sovety v pervyi god proletarskoi diktatury: Oktiabr’ 1917 g.-noiabr’1918 g. Moscow, 1967.