Can it be true that Vladimir Lenin, the alleged "leader of the world Proletariat," whose monuments adorned central squares in every Soviet town and who inspired generations of Soviet citizens, had been a mere agent provocateur working for the German government?
In The World Crisis, Volume 5, Winston Churchill writes this about war-time Germany in 1917:
"They turned upon Russia the most grisly of all weapons. They transported Lenin in a sealed truck like a plague bacillus from Switzerland into Russia."
The rest is history: Lenin staged a coup and withdrew Russia from World War One, conceding large swaths of land to Germany. In the process, he consolidated his power, initiated the policy of Red Terror, brutally exterminated all opposition, and founded the world's first totalitarian socialist state.
Many contemporary politicians had made claims that Lenin was a long-time agent of the Imperial German Secret Service. A warrant for his arrest was issued after the Russian government had learned that the Bolsheviks were financed by the Germans, with whom Russia was at war. However, with time these claims dwindled as no documentary proof could be found.
Why did Lenin's culpability, which his contemporaries considered evident, stop being so evident to the following generations? What did the contemporaries know that we don't?
It would be safe to assume that Soviet agents, who had penetrated all levels of Western societies early on, had successfully removed and destroyed all proof, along with all the witnesses. They apparently did it so well that even the Nazis, who inherited the German intelligence service about a decade later, couldn't find any related documents, otherwise they would have certainly demonstrated them to the world in order to prove the illegitimacy of the rival dictatorship. Let's leave further speculations to the authors of period spy thrillers.
The fact is, Lenin's case wouldn't be all that unique. At the time, the Imperial German Secret Service seemed to have a policy of recruiting agents among exiled Russian communists and financing their subversive activities and propaganda aimed to plunge Russia into turmoil. Some of them, like Fuerstenberg and Kozlovsky, were prominent Bolsheviks with close ties to Lenin.
This author provides a number of other examples of such recruitment and money trails, concluding his research by saying, "we know that the Bolsheviks conducted public relations that seemed to be beyond their means. We know that German agents - some with considerable funds at their disposal - were closely entwined with the Bolsheviks. And we know that Lenin lied when confronted about that situation."
The truth was unearthed only in the late 1980s, with the opening of Soviet archives to the public. The newly declassified documents revealed the dates, the banks, and the substantial amounts of money provided to the communists by Kaiser's Germany, which financed Lenin's subversive, seditious activities. According to historian Albert L. Weeks, the German authorities cynically referred to Lenin as a "bacillus" who would "infect" Russia and thus incapacitate a major military adversary.
But do even the large money transfers and the intriguing return from exile in a sealed one-car train make Lenin a spy? Only in the most general sense of the word; strictly speaking, he was rather a sociopathic traitor and a criminally-minded, community-organizing opportunist, driven by the principle of "the enemy of my enemy is my friend." In the words of Weeks, Lenin "merely took advantage of the Kaiser's 'generosity' and exploited the subsidies for his own purposes in seizing and holding power in Russia."
And yet, while the Bolshevik revolution could not have been engineered by the Western bankers as some modern conspiracy theories claim, there is enough evidence to suggest that Lenin could not have pulled it off without Germany's financial and logistical help. And even if he had, the "leader of the workers and peasants" would surely have used less radical strategies had he not had a second career on which to fall back.
Common sense suggests that if left to their own devices, Lenin and his close comrades would be less likely to take such great risks; it was the helpful network of foreign agents with backup plans, escape routes, and other comforting factors that boosted their confidence and provided the feeling of relative safety. Thus, their motto, "we have nothing to lose but our chains," was a lie. The selfless sacrifice and the blind trust in the Communist Manifesto was good enough for the people but not for the people's leaders.
In this, Lenin was not an exception. Being the leader of the semi-legal communist party, he collaborated with his nation's enemy in a time of war much like the American communists and other leftist groups, who have throughout history collaborated with enemies of the United States in order to gain more influence at the expense of their own country.
The irrefutable evidence that Lenin and his party conspired with and received funding from an enemy government sheds an unforgiving light on the seditious and treasonous character, methods, and motivations of all international communist and socialist movements, the Communist Party USA, and every communist party around the world, who continue to operate by Lenin's methods and who still hold him as a major inspiration.
In the court of law, a verdict based on false or tainted evidence is usually overturned. We have to wonder if in the court of history, the verdict regarding the celebrated "people's revolution" paid for by an imperial intelligence service will also be altered - and if our history books will be corrected accordingly.
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