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      Our Heritage - Alexandra Kollontai

      Russian revolutionary leader. During the 1917 Russian Revolution, she was a member of the Central Committee of the Bolshevik party. She is renowned for her Marxist feminist writings.

      Excerpt from “Who Needs the War?” 1916, written in reference to World War I

      If we are looking for the culprit, then we must say directly and honestly: the governments of all the belligerent powers are equally responsible for this present war. Responsibility for the war lies with the capitalists, bankers and landowners, together with their patrons and friends the tsars, kings, kaisers and their ministers and diplomats. They all constitute one criminal band. It is not the interests of the people that they watch over, but their own interests. War does not benefit the people, but their own pockets. They brought on this bloody disaster with their “foreign policy”. As for the people—get out there and die!... “Save the motherland” which they themselves betrayed, bringing on disaster. Die “for the glory of the fatherland”, forgetting all the injustices, insults and humiliations… Forget that even before the war began you understood that no good would come of government policy. Do not dare remember that only yesterday you seethed with indignation when an officer struck a private, that you cursed the people’s lack of rights in their own country… Now it is war! […] The war is being waged not among peoples of different faiths, not among different peoples with different faiths, not among different peoples with different customs, languages and traditions, but among states, among large capitalist powers. Each such power has swallowed up more than one people, taken more than one piece of land from its neighbours.

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