Published in Sotsial-Demorkrat No. 43, July 26, 1915.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, , Moscow, Volume 21, pages 275-280.
Republished from Marxists Internet Archives.
During a reactionary war a revolutionary class cannot but desire the defeat of its government.
This is axiomatic, and disputed only by conscious partisans or helpless satellites of the social-chauvinists. Among the former, for instance, is Semkovsky of the Organising Committee (No. 2 of its Izvestia), and among the latter, Trotsky and Bukvoyed, and Kautsky in Germany. To desire Russia’s defeat, Trotsky writes, is “an uncalled-for and absolutely unjustifiable concession to the political methodology of social-patriotism, which would replace the revolutionary struggle against the war and the conditions causing it, with an orientation—highly arbitrary in the present conditions—towards the lesser evil” (Nashe Slovo No. 105).