I went to the British Library’s exhibition on the Russian Revolution yesterday. Whatever your politics, there are important lessons for everyone in the Revolution and the experiment of the Soviet State. I learned two new things.

The Constituent Assembly was elected using the, at the time, world’s most democratic mandate consisting of all men & women, even those with no property qualification above the age of 18. The electoral commission that wrote the law were executed, allegedly by agents of the Cheka the day before the assembly met.

There was a typewritten letter from the British Ambassador in St. Petersburg, which he wrote after speaking to Will Thorne, a leading left activist and MP. The letter advised the Government not to give Sanctuary to the deposed Tsar and his family for fear of Bolshevik revolutionary activity in the United Kingdom. (They don’t teach that in school, and I’d often wondered why the Royal Family refused to allow them to come to Britain).


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