Trotsky and Leninism

Two Letters of Leon Trotsky

The two letters that we publish below were written by Trotsky, one, before the October Revolution, and the other, several years later. They indicate Trotsky’s persistent criticisms of Lenin and Leninism. They also suggest that it was his critique of Lenin which was the origin and basis of his subsequent attacks on Stalin.

The first letter, which follows, addressed to Chkeidze, the President of the Menshevik fraction of the Duma, shows what was Trotsky’s position in 1913. Although quotations from this letter have been frequently cited, so far as we are aware, this is the first time that the complete letter has been translated into English.

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