The Bolshevik Milrevcom announces it has seized power (1917)


The following proclamation was issued by the Bolshevik Military Revolutionary Committee (Milrevcom) on October 25th 1917. It was later read to Soviets, gatherings of workers and military battalions:


“We have deposed the government of Kerensky, which rose against the revolution and the people. The change which resulted in the deposition of the Provisional Government was accomplished without bloodshed.

The Petrograd Council of Workmen’s and Soldiers’ Delegates sincerely welcomes the change and proclaims the authority of the Military Revolutionary Committee until the creation of a government by the Workmen’s and Soldiers’ Delegates.

Announcing this to the army at the front, the Revolutionary Committee calls upon the revolutionary soldiers to closely watch the conduct of those in command. Officers who do not join the accomplished revolution immediately and openly must be arrested at once as enemies.

The Petrograd Council of Workmen’s and Soldiers’ Delegates considers this to be the program of the new authority:

First, the offer of an immediate democratic peace.

Second, the immediate handing over of privately owned land holdings to the peasants.

Third, the transmission of all authority to the Council of Workmen’s and Soldiers’ Delegates.

Fourth, the honest convocation of a Constitutional Assembly.

The national revolutionary army must not permit uncertain military detachments to leave the front for Petrograd. They should use persuasion, but where this fails they must oppose any such action on the part of these detachments by force without mercy.

The present order must be read immediately to all military detachments in all arms. The suppression of this order from the rank and file by army organisations is equivalent to a great crime against the revolution and will be punished by all the strength of the revolutionary law.

Soldiers! For peace, for bread, for land, and for the power of the people!

Signed,
The Military Revolutionary Committee”