Basel Manifesto of 1912

Basel Manifesto of 1912


a manifesto unanimously adopted at the congress of the Second International held at Basel, Switzerland, on November 24–25. In the context of the situation created by the war in the Balkans that had begun in October 1912 and the increasing threat of world war, the Basel Manifesto called on the international proletariat to conduct an unrelenting struggle against war and those responsible for it, the ruling classes of the capitalist countries. The manifesto confirmed the basic propositions of the resolution adopted by the Stuttgart Congress of the Second International in 1907 and pointed out that war, if it began, “would create an economic and political crisis,” which should be utilized to “hasten the downfall of the rule of capital.” Lenin noted that the Basel Manifesto had summed up the stand taken in the extensive propaganda and agitational socialist literature of all countries against war and constituted the fullest, most precise, and solemn expression of socialist views on war and on the tactics of socialists in regard to war.

The opportunist leaders of the Second International consigned the Basel Manifesto to oblivion. At the beginning of World War I they began defending the imperialist policies of their own bourgeois governments.


Lenin, V. I. Soch., 3rd ed., vol. 18. Appendix. Pages 408–11.
Ausserordentlicher Internationaler Sozialisten-Kongress zu Basel am 24 und 25 November 1912. Berlin, 1912. Pages 1–56.


Lenin, V. I. “Krakh II Internatsionala.” Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 26.
Lenin, V. I. “Sotsializm i voina.” Ibid.
Lenin, V. I. “Opportunizm i krakh II Internatsionala.” Ibid., vol. 27.