Vikzhel

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Vikzhel’

 

(All-Russian Executive Committee of the Rail-road Union), created at the first All-Russian Constituent Convention of Railroad Workers, which took place in Moscow from July 15 (28) to Aug. 25 (Sept. 7), 1917. The committee included 14 Socialist Revolutionaries, six Mensheviks, three Bolsheviks, six members of other parties, and 11 without party affiliation.

During the preparation and implementation of the October Revolution, Vikzhel’ emerged as one of the counter-revolutionary centers. Speaking out under the flag of “neutrality,” Vikzhel’ expressed its opposition to Soviet power, demanding the creation of a “homogeneous socialist government” and threatening a general transportation strike. On Oct. 29 (Nov. 11), 1917, the Central Committee of the RSDLP (Bolshevik) began negotiations with Vikzhel’ on the question of power. V. I. Lenin regarded these negotiations as “a diplomatic cover for military operations” (Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 35, p. 43). Lenin and the Central Committee of the Party sharply condemned the opportunistic position taken by several members of the central committee (L. B. Kamenev, G. la. Sokol’nikov, and others) who agreed with the demands of Vikzhel’. Continuing to maneuver, Vikzhel’ accepted a resolution on November 20 (December 3), in which it recognized Soviet power on the condition that it be given administration of the railroads. On November 23 (December 6), the Council of People’s Commissars resolved to convene an assembly of railroad workers. On December 12 (25), the Extraordinary All-Russian Convention of Rail-road Workers and Factory Hands opened in Petrograd, and Lenin addressed it on December 13 (26). The convention stood on a platform of Soviet power and accepted a resolution of no confidence in Vikzhel’. The convention’s left bloc resolved to execute all functions of the Extraordinary All-Russian Railroad Convention, which took place on Jan. 5-30 (Jan. 18-Feb. 12), 1918, in Petrograd. Vikzhedor (the All-Russian Executive Committee of Railroad Workers) was elected at this convention.

REFERENCE

Iz istorii bor’by kommunisticheskoi partii za razvitie sovetskogo zheleznodorozhnogo transporta. Leningrad, 1960.

G. E. REIKHBERG

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