Somehow imperceptibly for our state, the significant date of the centenary of the October revolution passed. We did not see the fireworks over Moscow, as in our time, we did not hear the Aurora shots in Petrograd and the solemn speeches from the Kremlin, the Federation Council or the State Duma. A march in honor of the 76 anniversary of the 7 parade of November 1941 took place on Red Square. Only more and more often they are silent about the fact that the world-shaking event in front-line Moscow was dedicated to the 24 anniversary of the Great October Revolution. New "white spot" in stories Fatherland tried to eliminate Russian television, showing several historical, artistic and documentary films. Among them, a special place is occupied by the advertised "Demon of the Revolution."
The series of three films tells about the times when Europe is seized by the First World War, and changes are ripening in tsarist Russia. The main plot revolves around Alexander Parvus (the real name and surname is Israel Gelfand). He plays Fedor Bondarchuk. In March 1915 of the year, this is a historical fact, Parvus offered the German government a detailed plan for organizing a revolution in Russia, known as the “Memorandum of Dr. Gelfand”. It was proposed to organize strikes, undermine bridges, set fire to oil wells and commit other terrorist acts. For this, Parvus personally developed clear instructions. The key role was assigned to the Bolsheviks. The German government in the person of the State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs G. von Yagov allocates funds for the revolution, and also organizes the return of Lenin from Switzerland to Russia. This will be the catalyst for subsequent events.
Obsessed with "demons"
Essentially, the talk in the series is that Lenin (Evgeny Mironov) turned out to be a bargaining figure. Germany needed to quickly end the war, which did not promise anything good. And they kind of sent Vladimir Ilyich with the assistance of Parvus to Russia, in order to carry out the October revolution, and then leave with the world. And if so, a conspiratorial version of the “sealed wagon” and its mysterious passenger Ulyanov, who returns home with a revolution on German money, immediately appears.
In this scenario, it is strange to expect an objective assessment of the personality of Lenin and the revolution. It will be exactly the opposite. It is clear that not everyone likes Lenin and his ideas. But why so abuse the “memoirs” of Tsarist counterintelligence officer Alexei Mezentsev, who by definition cannot be objective in relation to the events taking place? The question is natural: did the production director Vladimir Khotinenko and the group of authors study the history of a century ago so deeply as Yevgeny Mironov assures us in his interviews?
Meanwhile, there are memories of the Swiss Social Democrat Fritz Platten. In the West, he is called "the man who brought Lenin to Russia." In addition to the author's presentation of the history of the organization and implementation of the relocation of a group of Russian political émigrés headed by Ulyanov from Switzerland through Germany to Russia, the book includes a number of documents relating to this case and the memories of the participants.
Numerous rumors surrounding this fact, actively supported by Russian bourgeois newspapers, appeared as early as 1917. The Bolsheviks were accused of all sorts of crimes, starting with an agreement with the government of enemy Germany and ending with allegations of espionage in her favor or of financing William II of all the revolutionary activities of the RSDLP (b). The flurry of gossip was so strong that it overwhelmed the borders of the belligerent countries and reached Switzerland, where Platten, as a confidant of the “German spy,” was simply poisoned. And he officially demanded that the leadership of the Swiss Social Democratic Party refute the slander and confirm his innocence to any secret agreements with the German side, which was done by a special decision.
Parvus and Platten
Readers of the book "Lenin from emigration to Russia. March 1917 received first-hand information. Fritz Platten accompanied Vladimir Ilyich and his comrades to the Russian border, having traveled all the way in the famous “sealed train”. It seems natural that he, a prominent Swiss Communist, a talented writer, undertook the mission to write a book about the return of Lenin and his associates to Petrograd.
Platten did the hard work of collecting evidence. Finding documents on the negotiations with the German envoy in Bern, Baron von Romberg, was not a big deal, since the discussion of the possibility of relocating emigrants to Russia was conducted quite openly. True, even then Lenin assumed that the most contradictory rumors would arise around this question. That is why he secured a special statement from foreign socialists, who testified that the only way to return from emigration in the spring of 1917 of the year could be only through Germany. All these documents and materials are listed in the book by Platten. He also explained in detail how the Provisional Government managed to neutralize the attempts of revolutionaries to come to Russia through the countries of the Entente - England and France.
Platten paid much attention to analyzing the “spy” rumors that had already arisen in 1917. In particular, he also studied the role played by the aforementioned Parvus, an adventurer whom the authors of the film “The Demon of the Revolution” tried to return from oblivion and a century later, to make him famous among the broad masses. I quote Platten: “In the“ spy ”revelations, the name of Parvus was constantly mentioned, who repeatedly offered cooperation and money to the Bolsheviks, beginning with the 1915 year, and each time received a decisive refusal of Lenin. In March, 1917, having learned that Lenin feverishly was looking for any opportunity to return to Russia, Parvus immediately appeared on the horizon. Through intermediaries, he offered to bring V.I. Lenin and G.Ye. Zinoviev to Berlin and give money for travel. Realizing who was behind the "well-wishers," Lenin categorically refused. Parvus did not leave attempts to meet with Lenin even during the move, and he showed such intrusiveness that Lenin even had to record his refusal to meet with him on March 9 in Stockholm. ”
A large amount of factual material and numerous documents allowed Platten to reasonably prove that the Bolsheviks and Lenin personally were not involved in any ties with German intelligence. It was very useful for many that the author, preparing the first edition, did not confine his own thoughts about the events of the spring of 1917 and the analysis of documents, but gave some fundamentally important materials in the annex to the book. Among them are the “Protocol on the passage of Lenin through Germany in 1917” and documents on the activities of R. Grimm, who took part in the preparation of the evacuation of Russian revolutionaries to their homeland and therefore was accused of activities in the interests of Berlin. These materials not only complement Platten's work, but also allow the reader to independently study the details of a complex political game that began around the passage of Lenin and his satellites through Germany. The documents clearly trace the attempt of the total compromise of the Bolsheviks by the Russian bourgeois parties and the Provisional Government, which ultimately failed, although its echoes are heard to this day. To the great chagrin, they appeared today in the domestic cinema.
Platten's book was published in 1925 in Berlin in German and was almost immediately published in Russian by the Moscow Worker Edition of 10 in thousands of copies. Unfortunately, it turned out to be hidden in a special fund, where it lay for more than 60 years, being inaccessible to the general reader.
Why did she suffer such a fate? The book mentions the names of the "enemies of the people" - Trotsky, Zinoviev, Radek and others. Moreover, the appendix contains memoirs of G. E. Zinoviev, K. B. Radek, Ya. S. Ganetsky, telling about some of the details of the journey in a “sealed wagon”. And the author of the book, Fritz Platten, one of the organizers of that trip, did not avoid being counted among the “enemies of the people”, he was serving five years in a camp in the Arkhangelsk region and died before the end of his sentence. Ironically, this happened on Lenin's birthday - 22 April 1942.
Or was Platten himself an agent of foreign intelligence? This question was asked by Stalinist investigators. Platten followed Lenin to Russia, shut him down with his body during the attempted assault on 1918 in January, and was wounded. As a token of gratitude, Krupskaya presented Platten Browning with the dedication "For the salvation of our Ilyich." It is for illegal storage weaponsand not for work on foreign intelligence was served by a Swiss Communist.
In his homeland, in a report shown in 2014, television journalists elevated Platten to the rank of a romantic revolutionary, a champion of a socialist state and proportional representation, who deserved greater fame. At the same time in Switzerland, the documentary “Red Fritz. The era of revolution and the fate of Fritz Platten, directed by Helen Shtelee Pfister. The idea clearly passes through the tape: deciding to go through Germany that had fought with Russia, Lenin and his associates understood perfectly well that enemies would take advantage of this to portray them as traitors, agents of Wilhelm, etc. It is emphasized that it was Fritz Platten’s private initiative, nothing in common not having collusion with Germany. He met Lenin at the international conference of socialists in Zimmerwald in 1915, and when he, after the overthrow of the king asked Platten to negotiate with the Germans, felt “deeply obliged” to Ilyich.
Having accepted the proposal of the Bolsheviks about the organization of their move through Germany, Platten appealed to the German envoy in Switzerland and presented him with the following written conditions:
“1. I, Fritz Platten, take a wagon with political immigrants and legal persons wishing to travel to Russia via Germany under my full and unceasing personal responsibility.
2. Only the Platten is being demolished with the German authorities, without whose permission no one can get into the car locked up during the whole journey. The car is given the right to extraterritoriality.
3. There should be no checks on papers or persons either upon entering or leaving Germany.
4. Persons are admitted to the wagon with absolutely no distinction between their political direction and their relationship to issues of war and peace.
5. Everyone traveling issues tickets to Platten at the normal fare.
6. As far as possible, travel must occur without interruption, by direct communication. Without the technical necessity of a break in the journey can not be. It is impossible to leave the carriage not by any order, nor on one’s own initiative.
7. Permission to travel is given on the basis of the exchange of riding on German and Austrian prisoners of war and interned in Russia.
8. The facilitator and those traveling undertake to act in society and especially among the workers in the direction that this postulate will be implemented.
9. If possible, the nearest departure time from the Swiss border to the Swedish one, as well as technical details (luggage, etc.) are established immediately. ”
Two days later, Platten received a reply stating that his conditions were accepted, as reported by the departing persons, who by their personal signature confirmed that they had communicated the results of Platten’s negotiations with the German embassy to them, that they knew the threats of the Provisional Government, that they fully obeyed during the trip all orders of the head of Platten’s trip.
In the group of emigrants who returned home with Lenin, from 32 people were 19 Bolsheviks (N.K. Krupskaya, G.E. Zinoviev, I.F. Armand, D.S. Suliashvili, M.Tschakaya, G.A. Usievich et al.), Six Bundists and three supporters of the Parisian international newspaper Nashe Slovo. With great difficulty, those who had driven away raised money for the fare. Platten later recalled: “The money in which we, as enemies slandered, drowned, we had absolutely no. At the last minute, we would not have been able to redeem edible supplies if the board of the Swiss party had not opened a loan for us at 3000 fr. under the guarantee of Lang and Platten ". The help of the Swiss and Swedish socialists and the modest sum sent by the Central Committee of the RSDLP (b) made it possible to ensure the passage of Russian emigrants to their homeland.