The Counter-Revolution. July through early September, 1917.
July through early September, 1917
In April, June, and July, the principal actors were the same: the Liberals, the Compromisers and the Bolsheviks. At all these stages the masses were trying to crowd the bourgeoisie out of the government. But the difference in the political consequences of mass interference in the several cases was enormous. It was the bourgeoisie who suffered in consequence of the “April days.” The annexation policy was condemned – in words at least; the Kadet party was humiliated; the portfolio of foreign affairs was taken from it. In June the movement came to nothing. A gesture was made against the Bolsheviks, but the blow was not struck. In July the Bolshevik party was accused of treason, shattered, deprived of food and drink. Whereas in April Miliukov had been forced out of the government, in July Lenin was forced underground.
Petrograd, 4 July 1917. Street demonstration on NevskyProspekt just after troops of the Provisional Government have opened fire with machine guns.
“publish and paste up a manifesto in which is shall be declared that the accusation of espionage against the Bolshevik faction is a slander and a plot of the counter-revolution.”
“With a broken voice which fell from a hysterical shriek to a tragic whisper, Kerensky threatened an imaginary enemy, intently searching for him throughout the hall with inﬂamed eyes. . . .“ Miliukov really knew better than anybody else that this enemy was not imaginary. ”Today citizens of the Russian land, I will no longer dream. . . May my heart become a stone. . . .“ Thus Kerensky raged-”Let all those ﬂowers and dreams of humanity dry up. (A woman 5 voice from the gallery: ’You cannot do that. Your heart will not permit you.) I throw far away the key of my heart, beloved people. I will think only of the state.“
The hall was stupeﬁed, and this time both halves of it. The social symbol of the State Conference wound up with an insufferable monologue from a melodrama. That woman’s voice raised in defense of the ﬂowers of the heart sounded like a cry for help, like an S.O.S. from the peaceful, sunny, bloodless February revolution. The curtain came down at last upon the State Conference.” (141)
“The rebel general had stamped his foot, and legions rose up from the group-but they were the legions of the enemy.” (177)