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Monday, August 20, 2018

Alexander Kerensky: To Workingmen And Soldiers

Alexander Kerensky [1881-1970] was one of the foremost leaders in the move­ment that overthrew Czarism in Russia. He ruled that country for a short time—until the new Russian Republic was displaced by the Bol­shevist dictatorship. Here is an example of Kerensky’s oratory—a rous­ing call to the Russian people, made in March 1917.

Comrades! In entering the Provisional Government I remain a republican. In my work I must depend for help on the will of the people. I must have in the people my powerful support. May I trust you as I trust myself? [Tremendous cheers.]

I cannot live without the people, and if ever you begin to doubt me, kill me! I declare to the Provisional Government that I am a representative of democracy and that the government must take especially into account the views I shall uphold as a representative of the people, by whose efforts the old government was overthrown.

Comrades! Time does not wait, I call you to organization and discipline. I ask you to support us, your representatives, who are prepared to die for the people and have given the people their whole life.

Comrades! In my jurisdiction are all the premiers and ministers of the old régime. They will answer before the law for all crimes against the people. [Cries of “No mercy for them.”]

Comrades! Regenerated Russia will not resort to the shameful means utilized by the old régime; without trial nobody will be condemned. All prisoners will be tried in the open court of the people.

Comrades, soldiers and citizens! All measures taken by the new govern­ment will be published.

Soldiers! I ask your cooperation. Free Russia is born and none will succeed in wresting liberty from the hands of the people. Do not listen to the promptings of the agents of the old régime. Listen to your officers. Long live free Russia!

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