Izvestiia Sovetov Deputatov Trudiashchikhsia SSSR

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Izvestiia Sovetov Deputatov Trudiashchikhsia SSSR


(News of the Soviets of Working People’s Deputies of the USSR), Izvestiia, daily general political newspaper published by the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. The first issue, published as Izvestiia Petrogradskogo soveta rabochikh deputatov (News of the Petrograd Soviet of Workers’ Deputies), came out in Petrograd on Feb. 28 (Mar. 13), 1917. From Aug. 1 (14), 1917, the paper was published as Izvestiia Tsentral’-nogo Ispolnitel’nogo Komiteta i Petrogradskogo soveta rabochikh i soldatskikh deputatov (News of the Central Executive Committee and the Petrograd Soviet of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies) and from September 29 (October 12) as Izvestiia TsIK Sovetov rabochikh i soldatskikh deputatov (News of the CEC of the Soviets of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies).

Up to October 1917, the political orientation of the paper was determined by the conciliationist attitude of the Mensheviks and Socialist Revolutionaries, who at that time held the leading posts in the Petrograd Soviet of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies and the Central Executive Committee. V.I. Lenin repeatedly exposed the position of the editors of Izvestiia in the pages of Pravda. In the article “One More Departure From Democratic Principles,” he wrote: “The Narodniks and Mensheviks, who are editing Izvestiia, wish to be considered socialists, but do not even know how to be democrats” (Poln. sobr. soch. , 5th ed. , vol. 32, p. 118).

With the victory of the Great October Socialist Revolution, direction of the newspaper Izvestiia passed into the hands of the Bolsheviks. After the Second All-Russian Congress of Soviets, from Oct. 27 (Nov. 9), 1917, Izvestiia became the organ of the Central Executive Committee and the Petrograd Soviet of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies. The newspaper published the historic decrees on peace and on land and other major documents.

After the Soviet government moved to Moscow (March 1918), the newspaper was published in that city. The first issue of Izvestiia to be published in Moscow (no. 46) came out on Mar. 12, 1918, as Izvestiia Vserossiiskogo Tsentral’nogo IspolniteVnogo Komiteta Sovetov krest’ianskikh, rabochikh, soldatskikh i ka-zach’ikh deputatov (News of the All-Russian Central Executive Committee of the Soviets of Peasants’, Workers’, Soldiers,’ and Cossacks’ Deputies). It began with Lenin’s article “The Chief Task of Our Day.” Izvestiia dealt extensively with the struggle of the working class and toiling peasantry for a new life; the newspaper invariably focused attention on the creation and consolidation of the organs of Soviet power in the provinces, the mobilization of the working masses for the struggle against foreign interventionists and domestic counterrevolution, and the rehabilitation of the national economy, which had been devastated by the Civil War. Lenin’s programmatic article “The Immediate Tasks of the Soviet Government” was published in Izvestiia (no. 85, Apr. 28, 1918), as were other works of his dealing with the international position of the Soviet republic, the policies of the Bolshevik party and the Soviet government, and the concrete tasks of socialist construction.

From July, 14, 1923, Izvestiia was the organ of the Central Executive Committee of the USSR and the All-Russian Central Executive Committee. It dealt with the life of the Union and autonomous republics and the krais and oblasts as well as the development of the economy and culture of the peoples of the USSR. It also propagandized the principles of the Leninist national policy. During the prewar five-year plans the pages of Izvestiia extensively reflected the heroic labor and creative initiative of the masses and the leading and directing role of the Communist Party in the building of socialism. Since Jan. 26, 1938, the paper has been published as Izvestiia Sovetov deputatov trudiashchikhsia SSSR.

During the Great Patriotic War (1941–45) Izvestiia, like other Soviet newspapers, actively aided the party and the Soviet government in mobilizing all the forces of the nation for the struggle against the fascist aggressors. The journalists of Izvestiia worked as war correspondents on the fronts and testified to the courage and heroism of Soviet fighting men. The work of the Soviet home front—the selfless labor of the workers and kolkhoz members—was treated comprehensively in the pages of the newspaper.

During the postwar years Izvestiia devoted much attention to questions of scientific and technical progress, the implementation of economic reform, and the improvement of the management of the national economy. The paper generalizes the experience of the work of the soviets, and it poses the problems of the further development of socialist democracy, the improvement of the work of the state machinery, and the ideological education of the Soviet people.

The first editors of Izvestiia were Iu. M. Steklov, I.I. Skvortsov-Stepanov, and M.A. Savel’ev. Many prominent state and public figures wrote repeatedly for Izvestiia, including M.I. Kalinin, G.K. Ordzhonikidze, M.V. Frunze, G.I. Petrovskii, V.V. Kuibyshev, N.K. Krupskaia, G.M. Krzhizhanovskii, A.V. Lunacharskii, and M. Gorky.

Izvestiia has its own correspondents in all the Union republics, most of the autonomous republics, and the krais and oblasts of the USSR and also has about 100 permanent correspondents who are not on the regular staff. The paper is represented by its own correspondents in more than 30 foreign countries. Izvestiia has its own printing facilities. Besides Moscow, the newspaper is printed (1972) from matrices in 25 cities and from phototele-graphic copies in 16 cities of the country. Since June 1, 1960, two editions have been published: an evening edition for readers in Moscow and the Moscow region and a morning edition for readers in other cities. Circulation (1971) is about 8. 5 million. Nedelia, an illustrated Sunday supplement, has been published since 1959.

In 1949 the paper was awarded the Order of the Red Banner of Labor, and in 1967, on the 50th anniversary of the day of publication of the first issue, it was awarded the Order of Lenin. The greeting from the Central Committee of the CPSU, the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, and the Council of Ministers of the USSR sent to Izvestiia on its 50th anniversary reads: “Faithful to the traditions of the Leninist Pravda, the newspaper Izvestiia has actively aided and aids the party at all stages of the development of the Soviet state in implementing the party’s Leninist general line and in the struggle for the fundamental interests of the people” (Izvestiia, Mar. 13, 1967, p. 1).


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.