Thursday marked the 151st birthday of the most successful revolutionary of all time, Vladimir Lenin. With only a tiny cabal of diehard followers, Lenin seized control of the world’s largest country and inaugurated a reign of darkness and terror that lasted seventy years.
There are many lessons to draw from the blood-soaked life of Lenin. But one of the most important is this takeaway for the terrifying “woke” moment America is living through right now. Things are not going to naturally get better. Things will not organically “calm down.” Until there is a fundamental reset of America’s treasonous leadership class, today’s unthinkable witch hunt is merely a prelude of an even darker globalist terror to come.
The Bolsheviks were indisputably more murderous than today’s left (if only because they lived in a more violent age), but even they had to ramp up how much terror they engaged in.
At the beginning of their rule, in fact, the Bolsheviks were even willing to run a fair election. Just days after the October Revolution, they held the preplanned elections for Russia’s Constituent Assembly, anticipating an easy win. To their surprise, they were easily defeated by the Socialist Revolutionaries. And so, like any good leftists, they simply nullified the election and dissolved the Constituent Assembly. Since it was 100 years ago and the Bolsheviks were well-armed, it was enough to simply announce that the Constituent Assembly was closed. Today, they might concoct a more elaborate narrative, perhaps that the Socialist Revolutionaries engaged in “collusion” with a foreign power.
Once they had taken power, the Bolsheviks didn’t immediately launch Stalin-style mass purges. Instead, the Bolsheviks started off in a way modern Americans would find disturbingly familiar: By legitimizing criminal anarchy and co-opting the justice system.
In their earliest days, the Bolsheviks framed their political abuses as a “war on privilege.” In a tactic eerily reminiscent of 2020’s riots, the Bolsheviks of 1918 encouraged a decentralized campaign by the masses to plunder and crush class enemies.
In January 1918, at a meeting of party agitators on their way to the provinces, Lenin explained that the plunder of bourgeois property was to be encouraged as a form of social justice by revenge. It was a question of ‘looting the looters’. Under this slogan, which the Bolsheviks soon made their own, there was an orgy of robbery and violence in the next few months. Gorky described it as a mass pogrom. Armed gangs robbed the propertied — and then robbed each other. Swindlers, thieves and bandits grew rich, as law and order finally vanished. [Figes, A People’s Tragedy, p. 525-526]
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This class-based economic warfare was coupled with a revolution in criminal justice. First, the mob replaced the old system of law and order, and then the Bolsheviks came in to lend it a gloss of structure. Crime became a class issue, where mundane criminals went free while class enemies were targeted for the most brutal repression on the flimsiest grounds:
Since the police and the old criminal courts had virtually disappeared, there was a common feeling that the only way to deal with the problem of crime was by mob trials in the street.
As the socioeconomic crisis deepened, and the popular belief developed that the burzhoois were responsible for it, so these mob trials began to assume an overtly class nature. They became a weapon in the war against privilege, focusing less on petty thieves from the urban poor and much more on merchants and shopkeepers, factory owners and employers, army officers, former tsarist officials and other figures of superordinate authority.
The Bolsheviks gave institutional form to the mob trials through the new People’s Courts, where ‘revolutionary justice’ was summarily administered in all criminal cases. The old criminal justice system, with its formal rules of law, was abolished as a relic of the ‘bourgeois order’.
The sessions of the People’s Courts were little more than formalized mob trials.
[R]obbers — and sometimes even murderers — of the rich were often given only a very light sentence, or even acquitted altogether, if they pleaded poverty as the cause of their crime. The looting of the looters had been legalized and, in the process, law as such abolished: there was only lawlessness.
Lenin had always been insistent that the legal system should be used as a weapon of mass terror against the bourgeoisie. The system of mob law which evolved through the Peoples Courts gave him that weapon of terror. [Figes, A People’s Tragedy, p. 533-4]
Reading about the Bolshevik system, it becomes much easier to understand events in our own time. In South Carolina, Army sergeant Jonathan Pentland has been charged with assault for shoving a black man on the sidewalk. The facts of the case overwhelmingly favor Pentland. The man he shoved had a history of harassing the women of the neighborhood, and Pentland was stepping in to stop just such a case of harassment.
But the facts of the case are nothing compared to the facts of the participants. Pentland is white, and he therefore represents a figure of authority in the minds of the underclass. This makes him a second-class citizen in 2021. His every action is presumptively racist and to be punished with maximum viciousness. Not only is he facing criminal charges, but he’s under investigation by the Army and DoJ, he was condemned by his superiors, and police let a mob surround and vandalize his home. Meanwhile, in San Francisco, a far worse assault on an elderly Asian man ended in no charges at all, because the attacker was from one of the left’s more privileged races.
It’s a strategy Cheka officer Martin Latsis would understand well:
[Do not] look for evidence as proof that the accused has acted or spoken against the Soviets. First you must ask him to what class he belongs, what his social origin is, his education and profession. These are the questions that must determine the fate of the accused. That is the meaning of the Red Terror. [Alpha History]
Crucially, from their oppressive beginnings, the Bolsheviks only grew more fanatical and more violent over time. The decentralized wave of mob justice and plunder gave way to a more centralized and ruthless campaign to exterminate enemies of the regime.
“We must put an end once and for all to the papist-Quaker babble about the sanctity of human life,” said Trotsky, one of the chief apostles of the so-called “Red Terror.”
The chief catalyst of the Terror was Fanny Kaplan’s attempted assassination of Lenin in August 1918. The Bolsheviks, always prone to paranoia, reacted to that attack with the rage of a berserker. They immediately announced the revival of the death penalty, which had been abolished after the overthrow of the tsar. Hundreds of political opponents were shot immediately, and orders went out across the country for the Cheka to round up hostages and shoot them in response to the slightest opposition.
As the Terror spread, the torments grew more creative:
Each local Cheka had its own speciality. In Kharkov they went in for the ‘glove trick’ — burning the victim’s hands in boiling water until the blistered skin could be peeled off: this left the victims with raw and bleeding hands and their torturers with ‘human gloves’. The Tsaritsyn Cheka sawed its victims’ bones in half. In Voronezh they rolled their naked victims in nail-studded barrels. In Armavir they crushed their skulls by tightening a leather strap with an iron bolt around their head. In Kiev they affixed a cage with rats to the victim’s torso and heated it so that the enraged rats ate their way through the victim’s guts in an effort to escape. In Odessa they chained their victims to planks and pushed them slowly into a furnace or a tank of boiling water. A favourite winter torture was to pour water on the naked victims until they became living ice statues. Many Chekas preferred psychological forms of torture. One had the victims led off to what they thought was their execution, only to find that a blank was fired at them. Another had the victims buried alive, or kept in a coffin with a corpse. [Figes, A People’s Tragedy, p. 646]
The press played in integral role in radicalizing the masses and justifying the Terror. “Only rivers of blood can atone for the blood of Lenin,” cried one paper. Pravda announced that “the time has come for us to crush the bourgeoisie or be crushed by it.” It sounds ghoulish to us, but then again, our own papers run headlines like this:
The Reds were initially radicalized by the sense of being under threat. But once their full depravity was unleashed, it crucially did not start to moderate simply because they were winning. At the end of the Russian Civil War, thousands of soldiers and officers in the White Army surrendered after receiving a promise of amnesty. Once they were rounded up, all of them were shot. The next three decades of the Soviet regime brought one round after another of purges, famines, de-kulakization, and terror.
Lenin’s Red Terror carries important lessons for America in 2021.
Every time the terror in America seems to have peaked, it gets worse.
In 2017, people lost their jobs for attending the Charlottesville march. It didn’t matter if they engaged in any violence or broke any laws. Merely being there was enough.
Many normal Americans shrugged.
“It was some racist march anyway,” thought most conservatives. “They should have known better than to go.”
But of course, it didn’t stop there. Throughout the Trump administration, it became acceptable to target people for pettier and pettier offenses: Anonymous posts online, leaked emails, decade-old articles (or decade-old tweets), attending conferences with the wrong people.
April 2021 has brought us to a new low. In Minnesota, Derek Chauvin is going to prison, likely for decades, for using a routine policing method to subdue a man twice his size who was resisting arrest. In Virginia, a police officer’s twenty-year career has ended in termination after he sent a $25 anonymous donation to the defense fund of Kyle Rittenhouse.
Lt. William Kelly was placed on administrative duty Friday, April 16, after reports were made that he donated and expressed support for the actions of Rittenhouse, who is accused of killing two people and injuring another during a Wisconsin protest in August 2020.
Norfolk Police Chief Larry Boone said Lt. Kelly violated city and department policies by donating money to Rittenhouse’s defense fund.
“I have reviewed the results of the internal investigation involving Lt. William Kelly. Chief Larry Boone and I have concluded Lt. Kelly’s actions are in violation of city and departmental policies. His egregious comments erode the trust between the Norfolk Police Department and those they are sworn to serve. The City of Norfolk has a standard of behavior for all employees, and we will hold staff accountable,” City Manager Chip Filer said. [NBC12]
Before Joe Biden took office, one of the lies told to get Middle America to accept him was that Biden would allow America to “calm down.” One piece in Slate was typical:
Joe Biden will make a difference. Things will be better. And sooner than you may think.
I am sure of this. I am sure of this the way that I am sure that kindness matters, that violence causes pain, that American democracy will prevail, regardless of the hurdles that it must repeatedly surmount. I am sure of this the way that I am sure an object in motion remains in motion, until something interferes to still it. Biden will be that stilling force. … The violence and unrest, the hatred and division that have bloodied this country since Donald Trump took office in January 2017, are an inevitable consequence of this man and the infectiousness of his beliefs, which he spread in roars across stadiums and in capital letters on social media. It spread person to person, mouth to mouth, hovering in the air, invisible and deadly. [Slate]
After Derek Chauvin conviction, Fox’s Greg Gutfeld sarcastically invoked the cowardly stance of many who welcomed Chauvin going to prison even if he was innocent because this would magically calm down the left and spare the country further riots.
Such thinking is not just morally repugnant, it is stupid. Mere hours after the Derek Chauvin verdict came down, the left began fomenting a new outrage. This time, the target was the Columbus police officer who shot and killed Ma’Khia Bryant to stop her from stabbing another girl.
The Biden Administration eagerly racialized the matter, with press secretary Jen Psaki suggesting the officer, motivated by racism, had executed a “child.”
Basketball star Lebron James ogreishly tweeted “YOU’RE NEXT #ACCOUNTABILITY” with a photo of the hero cop.
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The left will not be placated by handing it victories. They are on a crusade, and as long as they are not stopped they will only become more extreme, more vengeful, and more dangerous.
Cancel culture is only the prelude to the rape, torture, and murder of the American people by a resentful underclass goaded on by a parasitic globalist ruling class.
Why are there so many similarities between the Bolsheviks of old and the radical left of today? If there’s one constant in the 230 years since the French Revolution, it’s that extreme left-wing movements can’t deliver on their promises. There’s a reason online leftists have to retreat to the embarrassing anthem that “real Communism has never been tried.”
When left-wing movements start to fail, they become paranoid. Unable to accept the shortcomings of their ideology, they hunt for wreckers, saboteurs, spies, and traitors, any scapegoat that can be used to avoid admitting that their policies are the root of failure.
That’s just as true of today’s left as it is of their intellectual forebears. Despite uprooting every part of American life and spending trillions of dollars, liberalism has totally failed to abolish inequality in America. Instead of bringing universal prosperity, liberalism has produced homeless hellscapes, catastrophic public schools, gutted neighborhoods, and fragmented families. Finding the causes within liberalism is unthinkable. Again and again, big-city governments, private colleges, elite newspapers, and left-wing non-profits have been convulsed by witch hunts to root out “sexism” and “systemic racism.” Decades-old statements and stray words are sufficient proof to end a career, and sometimes not even that is needed. Rather than accept the reality that black Americans are more likely to commit crimes than other groups, liberals have declared war on the police. They would rather send good police to prison and subject millions of Americans to criminal terror than admit to a truth that is right in front of them.
But the second reason why the left constantly escalates its terrorism is more basic: Keeping power. Marx’s colleague Friedrich Engels wrote that “Terror is the needless cruelties perpetrated by terrified men.” The left is already inclined toward cruelty by disposition, but once frightened at the prospect of actual defeat, they go into a frenzy. For the Bolsheviks, it was the attempted murder of Lenin and the Russian Civil War. For the Globalist American Empire, it was the election of Donald Trump. Rather than accept an outcome that might bring about their demise, the empire struck back.
What will the future of America look like? Hopefully, it will never get as horrific as it did under past failing liberal states. But this regime is already one that will denounce a police officer for saving someone’s life. This is a regime that tries to imprison a teenager for life for defending himself while trying to protect his community from a rioting mob. This is a regime that foments war in Ukraine to avoid admitting it lost an election. This is a regime that takes children from their parents so they can be put on hormone pills and have their genitals mutilated.