Kuban Rada of 1917–20
Kuban’ Rada of 1917–20
Kuban’ Regional Military Rada, a cossack organization, created in April 1917 in Ekaterinodar (now Krasnodar) upon the initiative of the upper strata of the cossacks, which became one of the centers of the cossack counterrevolution in the Kuban’ region.
After the February Revolution of 1917 the Kuban’ region was headed by the Constitutional Democrat K. L. Bardizh, a commissar in the Provisional Government. On Apr. 9 (22), 1917, a regional congress of representatives from the populated areas was opened in Ekaterinodar; at the same time a cossack congress was being held—the Kuban’ Military Rada, which elected a provisional military government and an ataman of the Kuban’ Host (Colonel A. P. Filimonov). At the first session of the Legislative Rada, held on Nov. 1 (14)-Nov. 11 (24), 1917, instead of a provisional military government, a Kuban’ regional government was elected under the chairmanship of L. L. Bych (the head of the petit bourgeois independence movement in the Kuban’ area); this group proclaimed itself as the supreme authority in the region. In February 1918 the executive committee of the soviets of the Kuban’ region, which was located in Armavir, declared the Kuban’ Rada and its “government” to be illegal, and on Mar. 14, 1918, Red Guard detachments captured Ekaterinodar. Expelled from the city, the Kuban’ Rada on Mar. 17, 1918, concluded an “alliance” with General A. I. Denikin’s Volunteer Army.
After the capture of Ekaterinodar by Denikin’s troops in August 1918, a new regional government was created, which sup-ported Denikin’s struggle against Soviet power, but which nonetheless opposed the policy of restoring a “unified and indivisible” Russia and advocated autonomy for the Kuban’ region. This group, called the Black Sea faction and led by N. S. Riabovol, A. I. Kulabukhov, Bych, and others, encountered opposition from the group called the line cossacks (Denikin’s adherents, including D. E. Skobtsov, Filimonov and Generals V. G. Naumenko and A. G. Shkuro), who were against autonomy for the Kuban’.
In June 1919, in connection with Denikin’s great-power policy, the Black Sea faction gained the upper hand in the Kuban’ Rada; they were elected to all the “government” organs. Maintaining on the whole the principle of the inviolability of the cossack lands, they promulgated the Socialist Revolutionary land law and broadened somewhat the rights of outsiders. In response to this, on June 13, Denikin’s men killed Riabovol and Bardizh; the Black Sea faction was accused of traitorous relations with foreigners, and in November 1919, General V. L. Pokrovskii carried out a “coup d’etat”; part of the Black Sea faction fled or were exiled, while their leader, Kulabukhov, was hanged. The Kuban’ Rada elected a “government” that was more obedient to Denikin, and it strengthened the power of the ataman. The coup provoked the dissatisfaction of a considerable portion of the Kuban’ Cossacks in the army of Denikin, who had made concessions and satisfied a number of demands of the Kuban’ Rada (the independence of the Kuban’ Host, the organization of the Supreme Circle of the Don, Kuban’, and Terek, etc.). On Mar. 17, 1920, the Kuban’ Rada fled from Ekaterinodar, which was captured by the Red Army, to Novorossiisk, and soon it ceased to exist.