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Letters From Soviet Russia
lIIFE IN RUSSIAN RED ARMY. * 11 1 1 ■ 1 ■ 1 j" IDO not know whether our comrades abroad know how we live. Any how I think it is worth while to tell them about the life of the young Si vash Artillerists. Sivash is a bay, a very swampy place where Wrangel had one of his main strongholds. Our division drove Wrangel out by attacking him from the rear and thus settled his fate. Hence our division is cabled the Si vash Artillerymen. Discipline is very strict, but it is secured by continually and at every opportune moment explaining to the fled Army men their rights as well as their obligations, their role as the ■defenders of the Soviet Union. For this purpose we have, in addition to military training, political education classes two hours daily. During these classes Red Army men study the So viet constitution, the history of the Soviet power and the history of the Red Army and the civil war. The Red Army men are also taught geography reading and writing, arithmetic and agriculture. In our aitillery regiment we have no illiterates, but there are illiterate people in the infantry regi ments. They are formed into separ ate, groups or squads and are taught to read and write being set free from drill and other work. Definite hours are given to general physical training and to the study of sanitation and physics. On the whole six hours a day are given to study and the rest of the time they have at their own disposal and may spend it just as they like if they inform their immediate relief. For their recreation there is a club with a number of circles, a school for political education, a dramatic circle, a circle for general education, etc. The club has a library and reading room, it publishes a wall newspaper Which does not even spare the com mander of the regiment if he has been at fault in any way. There is also a mililtary correspendence circle to which all Red Army men who contri bute to the paper belong. In this' circle they learn how to write for the newspapers, etc. Once a week there is a dramatic performance in the club, and we also have “youth” socials, “military” socials, etc. The club works for the whole regiment. We must admit that the club of our regi ment is not as efficient as the clubs of other regiments. In addition to all this we have a Lenin “corner” with various sections in every battalion of the regiment. In these "corners" there are small librar ies and about eight different news papers. Readings and informal talks take place in these “corners,” as well as party, young Communist and Red Army meetings. Similar meetings are held once a month for the whole regi ment. Very frequently (every week) we are taken to the cinema. We also visit the workers in the factory which is our patron. We also visit museums and aquariums (there is a very good one in Nikolaev). This is just the gen eral outline of our army life. Altho we are taken away from our homes we do not feel isolated. The Red Army which is a proletar ian army is a school, and young peas ants are right when they-say: “We must study otherwise we will come back to our villages just as we left them, and what would be the use of that?” And we get a military training and education and become more efficient as we go on. Thus your bourgeoisie will never be able to take us and our Union unawares. There is still much to write about— our economic situation, our shortcom ings, the link between the workers and peasants, etc. But I will leave all this for my next letter, that is to say if you are interested in it and if I receive a reply from you. Today I want to describe Just one more fact. Not so long ugo we had ( The letters from our Russian comrades arc being read ■with interest, but most of the value of them will be lost if they arouse, no desire to build the Communist press in America by similar methods—contributions from worker-correspondents, news of the life and struggles of the masses written by those who arc part of them. These letters from Russia should receive replies. They can be sent to the DAILY WORKER and will be forwarded promptly to the proper address. There is no better vxiy than this of binding the workers of both countries with a comradely bond. » / in the regiment the trial of the com mander of the platoon. He was charged with having compelled a Red Army man to run about 15 minutes wearing an anti-gas mas- cU a punish ment for some misdemeanor. The rev olutionary military tribunal sentenc ed him for exceeding his powers to 12 months solitary confinement. Does it happen in your army that commanders are tried in this fashion? —G Koten, Red Army man of the 15th Artillery regiment. Nikolaev, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic. FROM A TEXTILE WORKER. TAEAR Foreign Comrades: As I know that your bourgeois press is not only giving you a wrong idea of the life of Russian workers, but is even distorting facts, I, who am my self a worker, will endeavor to de scribe in this letter our factory life A Worker Hails Soviet Russia Hail to you, Soviet Russia Where the red flag is unfurled. Between its folds are letters of gold, Calling Workers of the World To unite in one big union; you have a world to gain. And so come along and join the throng You have nothing to lose but your chain. CHORUS: . Hurrah for the boys of the Red Army, They are Russia’s fighting sons, With all their might they fight for the right And they know how to use their guns. Out of the oil fields of Baku Wrangel is running yet Hurrah for the boys of the Red Army And long live the Soviet. Hail to you, Soviet Russia Hail to you once again I’m writing to you, tho the lines are few From this land of greed and gain. In tones of the bells of Moscow I can hear revolution ring. Flail to you, Soviet Russia This song to you I’ll sing. (Steve Green, Garrison, N. D. 5-2-25.) " to help to give you a right idea of it. OUR factory where I work and about which I am going to write is in the center of the textile industry, in the Ivanovo-Voznesensk District. It is a cotton mill which employs eleven and a half thousand men and women. This is what happened here: After the October revolution our workers took the factory into their own hands and kept it going. The workers chose from amongst themselves capable people from the bench, and these elected persons became the head of the management. Our workers were not long in realizing that they them selves were the true masters of this gigantic enterprise. ONCE workers have assumed power they begin to improve the condi tions under which they have to work und live, and they improve production at the same time. This also happened here. They formed a protection of la bor depaxfinent which looks after the needs of the workers; provides them with suitable clothes and footwear, fats (if necessary for the kind of work they perform), etc. We have special rest homes where those whose health has suffered can spend from a fort night to one month with full pay. Workers who are tubercular are sent to sanitoria and health resorts for longer periods, and they also receive their full pay. In 1924 over 600 of our workers spent some time in rest homes, sanatoria, and health resorts. WORKING women—the mothers— are well looked after, and per haps their privileges are greater than those of men. For instance during pregnancy they are given two months’ leave of absence and two months after the birth of the child. During these four months they receive full pay and their places are kept open for them. During the 9 months when she is nursing the child, a working woman works only 6 hours instead of 8 while receving full pay. During this period she receives a special monthly grant. WE have children’s homes and creches where mothers can leave their children and can be certain that they are better looked after there than at home. All this is provided free of charge. Our working women have been given equal rights with men and are drawn everywhere into social work. In our factory there is not a single organization without its quota of women. They are on the factory committee, in the club, in the co-oper atives, etc. rpHERE are women who occupy rc -*• sponsible posts such as chairman of factory committees, factory manag ers, etc. In our factory engineers are only employed as experts. Relations between them and the workers have undergone a complete change. Our workers have no longer to submit to rough treatment by the engineers, as the latter are aware that they will be dismissed for such behavior. And the time is not far distant when we shall have our own engineers, technicians, chemists, mechanics, etc., who have sprung from the working class. TpOR young workers there is in our factory an apprenticeship school where they get a thoro training and from where they can enter higher edu cational establishments. Their labor is also protected. Tho factory has a club where the workers can increase their knowledge. It hus a well-stocked library and n rending room, and all sorts of circles and sections are organized by the workers themselves. The former mas- 4 ters would not have given all this to tho workers, and neither will yours. TjtOß adult men and women there is a higher grade school. The at tendance there is not very numerous —-about 300 people a day. Our work ers have a great desire to learn and to improve their minds. On leaving this school they will go to higher edu cational establishments, as the doors of universities and technical colleges are opened wide to our workers. rpHE adult and young workers of our factory publish wall newspapers. Thru this press many shortcomings are remedied, production is improved 1 and old customs and habits are fought against—the achievements of these wall newspapers are very great in deed. Production is growing from month to month. • ’ Our workers are anxiouß in aH their* doings to carry out the injunctions of the leader of the world proletariat, Comrade Lenin. "TvEAR foreign comrades, should this letter be reprinted in your press, I will write to you regularly every month in more detail and will describe the life of our peasantry. My comrades and I await your re ply, and shall be particularly glad to receive a letter from the textile work ers in your country. With Comradely Greetings, Maly shev, Workers’ Correspondent of the Wall Newspaper Rodnikovsky Rab otchy. OUR ARMY IS GROWING By NADIEJDA KRUPSKAYA. "CIOR a long time, for many cen turies, Russia was an economical ly, and culturally backward country. When, thirty years ago, a revolution ary workers’ party arose, our work ing class was a down trodden, en slaved and dumb mass. Only he who saw not only the present, but also the the future, and was able to view the movement from an international standpoint could believe that this class would one day become a staunch upright and disciplined fighter, and would be absolutely victorious. And for this reason the Russian labor movement never for a moment forgot its blood relationship with the international labor movement, and it never will forget it. For the prole tarians of our Soviet Union, such days as May 1, and March 8, are days of international brotherhood, days of the greatest importance. In the Union of Soviet Republics in the last years there has been express ed with enormous force the urge of the masses for independent activity. The movement has spread rapidly, fresh thousands of working women of our Union —working women and peas ant women—awoke to a conscious life. They flocked to the ranks of those to whom the cause of the vic tory of the international proletariat Is dear, who passionately long for the emancipation of all workers and de vote their whole lives to this aim. “Our array has grown greater” can be said today by the class-conscions proletarian women of all countries. Every year the army of class consci ous, closely-knit proletarian men and women, who are fighting shoulder to shoulder, will become greater. And no power in the world will be able to resist this army. Give jour shopmatc (Lis copy of the DAILY WOKKKK—but be sure to see him the next day to get his subscription. PyccKaq BenepHHKa Yes, that’s what we mean: Rus sian Vecherinka, which will be giv en this Saturday night, March 28, at the House of the Worker (form erly Soviet School), 1902 W. Divis ion St. A short play in Russian and dancing will follow. A good time is promised to those who will attend.