Mezhraiontsy


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Mezhraiontsy

 

members of the Mezhraionnaia Organization of United Social Democrats, which was formed in St. Petersburg in November 1913. At first it was called the Mezhduraionnaia Commission of the RSDLP, being renamed the Mezhduraionnyi Committee in late 1914. Among its adherents were the Trotskyists, some of the proparty Mensheviks, the group around the magazine Vpered (Forward), and the Bolshevik conciliators who had split from the party.

The Mezhraiontsy attempted to create a “unified RSDLP” and to unify the Bolshevik and Menshevik organizations in St. Petersburg. During World War I they opposed social chauvinism but did not make a complete break with Menshevism. After the February Revolution of 1917 they broke with the defensists and, declaring their agreement with the Bolshevik line, offered to merge their organizations with those of the Bolsheviks. The Bolsheviks ran in the elections for the Petrograd district councils in May-June 1917 in a bloc with the Mezhraiontsy. The question of unifying the two organizations was repeatedly discussed in the St. Petersburg Committee and the Central Committee of the RSDLP (Bolshevik). Among the Mezhraiontsy in the summer of 1917 were A. A. Ioffe, K. K. Iurenev, A. V. Lunacharsky, D. Z. Manuil’skii, L. D. Trotsky, M. S. Uritskii, and V. Volodarskii. Representatives of the Mezhraiontsy were included in the organizational bureau in charge of preparing the Sixth Congress of the RSDLP(B); at the congress, the Mezhraiontsy (some 4,000 strong) were accepted into the Bolshevik Party. Many of them actually became Bolsheviks. Trotsky and a small group of his supporters formally discontinued their struggle against Bolshevism but did not renounce their anti-Leninist views.

The Mezhraiontsy published the magazine Vpered. After the Sixth Congress of the party the composition of the editorial board was changed, and the ninth issue was published as an organ of the Central Committee of the RSDLP(B). In September 1917 the Central Committee decided to cease publication of the magazine.

REFERENCES

Lenin, V. I. “K voprosu ob ob”edinenii internatsionalistov.” Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 32.
Lenin, V. I. “Partii na vyborakh v raionnye dumy Petrograda.” Ibid. Shestoi s”ezd RSDRP(b), Avgust 1917—Protokoly. Moscow, 1958. Pages 238-40, 269-70.
Istoriia KPSS, vol. 3, book 1. Moscow, 1967. Pages 193-94.

I. V. ZAGOSKINA