Chairman of the revolutionary Russian regional committee, I. Smilga, in Helsinki Feb. 1918:
The revolution in Finland and Russian soldiers.
Beneath this headline the Workers' and Soldiers' Soviet in Helsinki has made public as follows,
The victorious revolution in Helsinki has overthrown the bourgeois Senate and handed over the power to the people of Finland. As representatives of the revolutionary Russia we can hail this little stony land and wish her future successes in the battle. Our slogans, those of the Socialist revolution, have in the matter fact started to become a reality. The little Finland joins through the revolution her destiny with our revolution.
Therefore, because there are Russian soldiers in Finland, and because the White Guard in reality fights against us, an acute question has been raised among the Russian soldiers about our relationship with Finland. For us, the revolutionary Russians, the government of Finland appointed by the revolution is the most legal one.
The right to make a revolution against one's oppressors is the highest right of a people. For us all this is obvious and needs no proof.
But this is understood by the Finnish bourgeoisie as well. The sympathy of Russian soldiers towards the Finnish proletariat is no way secret to it. Our soldiers in many places in Ostrobothnia have been attacked and disarmed. It is unknown what has happened to the prisoners. Herds of white guardists meet in Ostrobothnia and prepare for an attack against Helsinki. What should we do at this grave moment?
Should we stay as "neutral", should we turn in our weapons to the White Guard? Anything more shameful cannot be thought about. Should Russian revolutionary troops give up when confronted with bourgeois heards? An honest Russian soldier will never lay down his arms in front of the White Guard. Better death than treachery of the revolution!
A merciless fight against all white bandits! The mercenaries of the bourgeoisie will be destroyed. Our soldiers, victorious over the bourgeoisie at home, shall not tolerate being joked about by the Finnish bourgeoisie. Be the enemies of the revolution liquidated without mercy! All honorable elements among us, up to the fight against the white bandits!
They shall be hundredfold responsible for the violence against our comrades. All our troops should be ready to fight! Our duty for the Finnish revolution will be fulfilled to the very end.
Chairman of the regional committee
Source: Arbetarnas Notisblad Nr. 4. (Workers' News) Sunday, February 3, 1918. Translated by Pauli Kruhse.
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