CXIX - Maya Jyzn', by Lev Trotsky, comments by André Bandeira
This autobiography, by Lev Davidovitch Bronstein (Trotsky), written in 1930, is so continuous as his theory of «Permanent Revolution», but it is not so vertiginous as it could sound. The blame for the 1917, October Revolution and its atrocities, comes a long way from within tsarism. As a matter of fact, the side of democracy was so vast, and the form of the Tsar's regime, since Peter the Great, was so european in an asian country, that everything one could count as opposition, never really managed to come over its own diversity. No wonder that bolchevism was a kind of moving train where many jumped in, and many more were kicked out, more due to the laws of Physics than to Politics. The defense that Trotsky makes of himself is plausible, but there is something blind, assertive and demagogical in it. There is even something malignant in his truculence. Taking into account the circumstances -- a bolshevik government which was nothing more than a bunch of putschists in a defeated ally of France and England -- Trotsky was a good diplomat, a good Minister of War and a «cosmopolitan» without diletantism. But he is very much indulgent with the questions posed by History which reverberate as a deafening silence, through the full-steam train of his rhetoric. In his role as a warlord in the Russian civil war I take his realism. All sides involved were just furthering the slaughter they arranged during the Great war and which would only end up in 1945. But what Trotsky catered for the «holy Revolution» in Russia is too ellusive of the chaos within the chaos that the Russian Empire had incepted during the flaming of the Great War, and where all the republican oppositionists just poured oil. Many more than we could account for, died abjectly, just as a result of a «gush of thinking» of the «revolutionarites». No wonder that after the train of violence and abjection is rolling on the rails, that a sudden glimpse of rationality rushes to the head of some, and implacably reduces the steep, to ashes. Lev Trostky states, at a certain point -- with a coarseness, he's not very much aware of -- that, once in his youth, he switched from rationalism, to dialectics. The Trinity of Hegel's Spirit always reminded me that Satan is a spirit too. And it was in this cynicism, where Reason takes a hike, that Trotsky, nevertheless, showed much more rationality than his contemporaries, including the Great Wizard, Lenin. Then, the rival Stalin emerged as Secretary-general, by the hand of Lenin, and Trotsky, as many others, got killed. But Stalin was not wise, he was as much smart, as bolchevism was just a war smoke-screen. One thing I retain from Trostky's portrait of Kerensky: this latter described the bolshevik revolution as « a slaves' insurrection». As Trotsky rightly points out, Kerensky overlooked the fact that slaves don't want to stay so. Moreover, Kerensky didn't know that historical times had deposited a looming phenomena that came to be called «masses» and -- narcisistic as a democrat can be-- he didn't even know how to pet this new beast. That is why Kerensky got a lowsy role in History and Trotsky got a role, which is still rolling today. It is a vertiginous role but it has much more followers than Trotsky could have imagined and even more than those followers could figure out. The permanent revolution is very much on its way. Finally why was Trostky so lucid and analytical about the decadence where he was being carried away, and he never analysed the end of tsarism and the self-indulgence of his youth? Did he also want to stay young forever? Or he simplily had a killer instinct, he always hid from the mirror?