The Protocols of Zion Toolkit - Part 2

Peter Myers; date October 8, 2002; update February 8, 2022. My comments are shown {thus}.

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This is Part 2; Part 1 is at toolkit.html; Part 3 is at toolkit3.html.

Part 2 of the Protocols of Zion Toolkit deals with the Revolutionary background to Napoleon III, against whom Joly's Dialogues is pitched. The French Revolution, the Communist Revolutions of 1830, 1848 and 1871, and the Bolshevik Revolution are covered here.

Joly's Dialogues was written during the rule of Emperor Naploeon III of France, and directed against him.

Maurice Joly was from the Communist camp. As Joly presents it, Napoleon III is a Machiavellian, fooling the people; as the Protocols present it, the Revolutionaries are Machiavellians, causing chaos and turmoil, and aiming at totalitarian control and a Reign of Terror.

Given the despotic nature of Bolshevism, and the plan for such despotism enunciated in the Protocols, it is instructive to compare Napoleon with the Bolsheviks, to see which has the worse record for killing, torture etc.

It will be seen that the Bolsheviks were far more despotic; it's no contest. But those claiming the Protocols a plagiarism from the Dialogues must pin the despotism on Napoleon III rather than the Bolsheviks.

In the Presidential Election of 10 December 1848, a few months after the attempted Communist revolutions of that year, Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte received 74.44% of the vote:,_1848. He ruled Constitutionally until 1851, then sought a second term. But Presidents were limited to a 4-year term, and Bonaparte was short of the two-thirds majority of deputies (in the Assembly) needed to change the Constitution. He therefore mounted a coup, and proclaimed himself Emperor Napoleon III.

He kept the Communists at bay, but followed the socialist policies of Saint-Simon.

Trotskyist writers depict Napoleon III as a proto-fascist - the first Fascist. The logic is that he stopped a Revolution, but implemented milder socialist policies that brought him wide support. His uncle Napoleon I had done the same, so perhaps HE was the first Fascist, and his nephew the second. On the same Trotskyist logic, Stalin was a fascist too; they were all 'Bonapartists'.

However, if Napoleon III's regime was fascist, it was a fascism without any anti-Jewish theme. Whilst many of the revolutionaries were Jewish, and Karl Marx was a rising prophet, non-Jewish leaders (Proudhon, Louis Blanc and Bakunin) were also prominent.

Napoleon appointed the Jewish banker Achille Fould as Minister of Finance.

Donald Trump is also touted as a Fascist, by his Communist (Trotskyist) opponents. And he too appointed the Jewish banker Gary Cohn as Chairman of the Economic Council.

The Ancestry of Political Correctness: correctness.html.

6. The Revolutionary background to Napoleon III

6.1 Communist Revolutions of 1830, 1848 and 1871

Emperor Napoleon III of France came to power soon after the attempted Europe-wide Communist Revolutions of 1848. After his ousting there was another Communist Revolution, the Paris Commune of 1871.

James H. Billington summed up Napoleon III's role, in his book Fire In The Minds Of Men: Origins Of The Revolutionary Faith (Temple Smith, London, 1980):

"Blanqui remained in prison; and the last great popular uprising of the era (of one hundred thousand rebels against Napoleon Ill's proclamation of dictatorship) in December 1851, was crushed with five hundred killed and twenty thousand convicted. There was no major upheaval in France and no further mention of the "dictatorship of the proletariat" anywhere until the Paris Commune twenty years later." (p. 285)

Karl Marx took part in the 1848 revolution, and endorsed the 1871 Paris Commune in his pamphlet The Civil War in France. Freemasons publicly took part in both events.

Of Marx' role in the Paris Commune, Michael Shapiro writes in his book The Jewish 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential Jews of All Time, Simon & Schuster, London, 1997:

{p. 33} In their frenzy, the Commune leaders executed the archbishop of Paris and other prominent leaders. Establishment forces reacted with a massacre of their own, staining the medieval byways of old Paris blood red. For his support, Marx became internationally known as the infamous "Red Doctor." In the common psyche, communism became synonymous with deadly violence, an association which Lenin and Mao later proved true. {endquote}

Interpreting the Revolutions begun in 1789, which were attempted again in 1830, 1848, and 1871, Marx wrote:

Karl Marx, The Holy Family, in Karl Marx Frederick Engels Collected Works, Volume 4, Lawrence & Wishart, London 1975:

{p. 119} ... the French Revolution gave rise to ideas which led beyond the ideas of the entire old world order. The revolutionary movement which began in 1789 in the Cercle social, which in the middle of its course had as its chief representatives Leclerc and Roux, and which finally with Babeuf's conspiracy was temporarily defeated, gave rise to the communist idea which Babeuf's friend Buonarroti re-introduced in France after the Revolution of 1830. This idea, consistently developed, is the idea of the new world order. {endquote}

Karl Marx, Socialism, in Karl Marx Frederick Engels Collected Works, Volume 25, Lawrence & Wishart, London 1987:

{p. 244} The state based on reason completely collapsed. Rousseau's Contrat Social had found its realisation in the Red Terror, from which the bourgeoisie, who had lost confidence in their own political capacity, had taken refuge first in the corruption of the Directorate, and, finally, under the wing of the Napoleonic despotism. The promised eternal peace was turned into an endless war of conquest. The society based upon reason had fared no better.

{p. 245} The right of the first night was transferred from the feudal lords to the bourgeois manufacturers. ...

The propertyless masses, during the Reign of Terror, were able for a moment to gain the mastery.


It seems, then, that the French people had to choose between Marx and Napoleon III.

6.2 Isaiah Berlin, Karl Marx: his life and environment, Thornton Butterworth, London 1939.

{p. 16} All that is important during the actual war is accurate knowledge of one's own resources and of those of the adversary ... Das Kapital is an attempt to provide such an analysis. ... The conceptions of natural rights, and of conscience, as belonging to every man irrespective of his position in the class struggle, are rejected as liberal illusions ... Moral, political, economic conceptions and ideals alter ... to regard any one of them as universal and immutable is tantamount to believing that the order to which they belong ... is eternal. ... Hence the contempt and loathing poured by Marx upon the common assumption, made by liberals and utilitarians, that since the interests of all men are ultimately and have always been the same, a measure of goodwill and benevolence on the part of

{p. 17} everyone may yet make it possible to manufacture some sort of general compromise. If the war is real, these interests are totally incompatible. ... He detested romanticism, emotionalism, and humanitarianism of every kind, and, in his anxiety to avoid any appeal to the idealistic feelings of his audience, systematically removed every trace of the old democratic vocabulary from the propagandist literature of his movement. ...

The war must be fought on every front, and ... a political party must be formed out of those elements ... destined to emerge as the conquering class.

{p. 20} The characteristic for which Marx sought was not novelty but truth, and when he found it in the works of others, he endeavoured, at any rate during the early years in Paris, in which his thought took its final shape, to incorporate it in his new synthesis. ...

{p. 21} Marx sifted this immense mass of chaotic material ... and in the light of it constructed a new instrument of social analysis, whose merit consists ...

{p. 22} ... in the remarkable combination of simple fundamental principles with comprehensiveness, detail and realism. ...

It was composed largely in Paris during the troubled years between 1843 and 1850 ...

{p. 143} In 1847 the London centre of the Communist League showed its confidence in him by commissioning him to compose a document containing a definitive statement of its beliefs and aims. He eagerly embraced this opportunity for an explicit summary of the new doctrine which had lately assumed its final shape in his head; He delivered it into their hands early in 1848. It was published a few weeks before the outbreak of the Paris revolution under the title of The Manifesto of the Communist Party. ...

{p. 147} The Manifesto ends with the celebrated words "The workers have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. Workers of all lands, unite!"

{p. 148} ... As an instrument of destructive propaganda it has no equal anywhere ... The Belgian Government, which behaved with considerable tolerance to political exiles, could not overlook this formidable publication, and brusquely expelled him and his family from its territory. On the next day the long expected revolution broke out in Paris. Flocon, a radical member of the new French Government, in a highly flattering letter, invited Marx to return to the revolutionary city. He immediately set off and arrived a day later.

He found the city in a state of universal and uncritical enthusiasm. The barriers had fallen once more, this time it seemed for ever. ...

{p. 149} News presently arrived that Naples had revolted, then Milan, Rome, Venice and other Italian cities. Berlin, Vienna, and Budapest had risen in arms. Europe was ablaze at last.

{p. 150} Acting in the name of the Communist League, Marx sent his agents to agitate among the German industrial masses, and used their reports as the material for his leading articles. There was at this time no formal censorship in the Rhineland, and his inflammatory words reached an ever-widening public.

{p. 151} As in 1842 Marx demanded an immediate war with Russia, both because no attempt at democratic revolution could succeed in Germany in view of the certainty of Russian intervention, and as a means of welding the German principalities into a united democratic whole ...

{p. 153} By July, 1848, the heroic phase of the Paris revolution had spent itself, and the conservative forces began to rally their strength.

{p. 156} The Prussian Government, which had annulled his Prussian citizenship four years previously, unable to reverse the verdict itself, in July 1849 expelled him from the Rhineland. He went to Paris, where the Bonapartist agitation in favour of Napoleon's nephew made the political situation even more confused than before, and it looked as if something of importance might occur at any moment.

... The revolution had patently failed.

{p. 157} ... only one European country placed no obstacle in his path. ... He arrived in London on the 2th August, 1849; his family followed a month later, and Engels, after dallying in Switzerland, and making a long and agreeable sea voyage from Genoa, came in the beginning of November. He found Marx convinced that the revolution might at any moment break out once more, and engaged on a pamphlet against the conservative republic.

{p. 164} There is no doubt that by 1848 Marx thought of it in terms of a self-appointed elite ... as Babeuf had conceived it in 1797, a small body of convinced and ruthless individuals, who were to wield dictatorial power and educate the proletariat until it reached a level at which it comprehended its proper task.

{p. 224} The Commune, as the new government described itself, was neither created nor inspired by the International ... By a great effort the people had shaken off the nightmare first of the Empire then of the siege; ... they announced

{p. 225} that the state in its old form was abolished, and called upon the people in arms to govern itself.

Presently, as supplies began to give out, and the condition of the besieged grew more desperate, terror developed: proscriptions began, men and women were condemned and executed, many of them certainly guiltless, and few deserving of death. Among those executed was the Archbishop of Paris who had been held as a hostage against the army at Versailles. The rest of Europe watched the monstrous events with growing indignation and disgust. The Communards seemed even to enlightened opinion, even, to old and tried friends of the people like Louis Blanc and Mazzini, to be a band of criminal lunatics dead to the appeal of humanity, social incendiaries pledged to destroy all religion and all morality, men driven out of their minds by real and imaginary wrongs, scarcely responsible for their enormities.

{p. 226} ... Marx ... acclaimed it as the first open and defiant manifestation in history of the strength and idealism of the working class - the first pitched battle which it had fought against its oppressors before the eyes of the whole world ...

The pamphlet, later entitled The Civil War in France was not primarily intended as a historical study: it was a tactical move, and one of typical audacity and intransigeance. Marx was sometimes blamed by his own followers for allowing the International to be linked in the popular mind with a band of law-breakers and assassins, an association which earned for it an unnecessarily sinister reputation. This was not the kind of consideration which could have influenced him in the slightest degree. He was, all his life, a convinced and uncompromising believer in a violent working class

{p. 227} revolution. The Commune was the first spontaneous rising of the workers in their capacity as workers: the July emeute of 1848, was, in his view, an attack on, and not by, them. ...

{p. 228} Marx attempted to forestall all reproaches by revealing his name as the sole author of the work. "The Red Terrorist Doctor," as he was now popularly known, became overnight the object of public odium ...

{p. 229} A large part of Paris was destroyed by fire during the Commune: this fire seemed to him a symbol of his own life, and a magnificent realization of his favourite paradox: "Destruction, too, is a kind of creation."

{end of quotes}

6.3 The Machiavelli Tradition

The Protocols of Zion and Joly's Dialogues are political documents in the tradition of Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527).

Machiavelli's book The Prince is one of the most famous, if notorious, texts in Political Science. Yet, although the disparaging term Machiavellian implies that Machiavelli himself was an intriguer, in fact all he did was document how unscrupulous absolute rulers operated. He did this in the guise of giving them advice.

The proof is that his exposes were not published until after his death. His own life might have been endangered, by publication while he was alive.

John Plamenatz writes,

"Of Machiavelli's four major works, only one, The Art of War, was printed during his lifetime, in 1521. The other three, The Prince, the Discourses and the Florentine Histories were not published till more than four years after his death." (John Plamenatz, ed., Machiavelli: The Prince, selections from The Discourses and other writings, Fontanas/Collins, London, 1972, p. 12).

J. R. Hale writes,

"The Discourses, like The Prince, were never revised for the press, they were not printed in Macchiavelli's lifetime, and it is hazardous to conjecture from the work as it strands what its final form would have been" (Machiavelli and Renaissance Italy, The English Universities Press Ltd, London 1961, p. 173).

The Prince is at

The Discourses is at

Moses and Machiavellism:

To undermine the Old World Order, the Enlightenment activists chose to use the same methods the Old Order used to maintain itself, which Machiavelli had described in The Prince. In other words, it adopted the ethic that the end justifies the means.

This is clearly stated by Jean Jacques Rousseau in The Social Contract: "Machiavelli's Prince is a handbook for Republicans." (Penguin, Harmondsworth, 1970, p.118).

Rousseau's footnote to the above, on p. 118, reads:

"Machiavelli was a gentleman and a good citizen; but being attached to the house of Medici, he was forced during the oppression of his country to disguise his love of liberty. The very choice of an execrable hero reveals his secret intention, and the antithesis between his principles in his book The Prince and those in his Discourses on Livy and his History of Florence proves that this profound thinker has so far had only superficial or corrupted readers. The Pope's court strictly prohibited his book, which I can well believe, since that was the court he depicts most plainly." (p. 118n).

By this he meant, that Machiavelli's insights could be used by the revolutionary movement. Further, Rousseau stated,

"In ancient times, Greece flourished at the height of the cruellest wars; blood flowed in torrents, but the whole country was thickly populated. 'It appeared,' says Machiavelli, 'that in the midst of murder, proscription and civil wars, our republic became stronger than ever; the civil virtue of the citizens, their morals, and their independence, served more effectively to strengthen it than all their dissensions may have done to weaken it.' A little disturbance gives vigour to the soul, and what really makes the species prosper is not peace but freedom." (The Social Contract, Penguin, note on p.131).

Even Babeuf, the only person praised by Karl Marx in the Communist Manifesto, appealed to Machiavelli in his defence during the French Revolution.

6.4 Babeuf on the Revolution

Marx and Engels name six people in the Communist Manifesto: Sismondi, Proudhon, Babeuf, St. Simon, Fourier and Owen. Babeuf is held up as a hero; all the others are criticised.

Robespierre was overthrown on July 29, 1794.

Francois-Noel Babeuf, who adopted the revolutionary name Gracchus, was arrested by the Directorate (principally Napoleon), who had seized power following the fall of Robespierre. Babeuf had been agitating for equality, peoples's rights, and a return to the Jacobin Constitution of 1793; but the Republican Government which tried and executed him probably saw him as representing a return to the Terror.

J. L. Talmon, The Origins of Totalitarian Democracy, Frederick A. Praeger, New York 1960.



THE seeds of the Conspiracy of the Equals were sown in the political prisons which held the Jacobins taken captive after the unsuccessful uprisings of the 12 Germinal and 1 Prairial. These prisons became a kind of political academy.

... The Irreconcilables raised the rallying cry of "Bread and the Constitution of 1793". Some of these moved still further to the Left, to Communism, but even those who would not go so far welcomed and encouraged the vigorous and effective propaganda against the regime conducted by the extreme Left, especially Babeuf in his Tribun du Peuple, which was the successor of the more moderate Journal de la Liberte de la Presse.

The Left had no proper organization. Its members were in loose touch with each other, met casually in cafes and parks, indulging in general discussions. The Jacobin Club had been dissolved. The Constitution of 1795 forbade affiliations and correspondence between societies, prohibited the election of permanent officers and fixed conditions of admission and eligibility. It also banned collective petitions and closed meetings. The

{p. 197} popular societies were to be no more than casual Hyde Park gatherings to listen to a soap-box speaker.

During the liberal period soon after the Vendemiaire events, the Directory allowed the Society of the Pantheon, called the "Reunion des amis de la Republique", to be founded, and to become a rallying centre for the Left. The Government hoped to be able to control the Society through its agents.

The Society proceeded without permanent officers, rules of procedure, registers or minutes. It was a very loose body. The meetings were held in the ancient refectory of the nuns, and, when this hall was occupied, in the Convent's vault or crypt, "where", in the words of Buonarroti, "the dim paleness of the torch light, the hollow echoes of their voices, and the constrained positions of the persons present, either standing or seated on the ground, impressed on them the greatness and the perils of their enterprise, as well as of the courage and prudence it required".

The Societe de Pantheon became the scene of a tug of war between Left extremists and Government agents. When its discussions became too menacing, the Government ordered General Bonaparte to close it down, on 1 Ventase, an IV.

{p. 198} Events were however hastening the outbreak of the insurrection.

{end quotes}

In his defence, at his trial for conspiracy to overthrow the Government, Babeuf said:

John Scott, ed., The Defense of Gracchus Babeuf Before the High Court of Vendome, University of Massachusetts Press, 1967 (with an Essay by Herbert Marcuse):

{p. 19} Gentelemen of the Jury, ...

{p. 22} Socrates made war on bigotry - and drank the poisoned cup. Jesus of Galilee, who taught men to love equality, truth, and justice, and to hate the rich, was nailed live to the stake. Lycurgus fled his native land to escape death at the hands of those whom his deeds had made happy. ...

{p. 23} Two hundred and eighty-four members of the Areopagus passed sentence upon Socrates, to be sure; but they were the creatures of two scoundrels, Anytus and Meletus, and Socrates did not defend himself. Christ's trial amounted to nothing more than a brief interrogation before Pontius Pilate.

{Karl Marx rejected the analogy drawn by F. C. Baur between Socrates and Christ (see his Notebooks on Epicurean Philosophy, in Karl Marx Frederick Engels Collected Works, Volume 1, Progress Publishers, Moscow, 1975, pp. 493-4)}

{p. 24} It cannot be said too often that this trial is the trial of the Revolution itself.

{p. 26} I am aware that in this last observation I reveal the secret of the people's weakness and the corresponding strength of their would-be oppressors. My words, indeed, might provide them with a commentary upon a theme by Machiavelli. ... In a democracy, yes, even in Rome, I would be brought before the people themselves, in the public square, to argue my case.

{p. 41} After 13 vendemairie I became aware that the masses - weary of a Revolution whose twists and turns had brought them only sorrow - had, it must be admitted, turned back to royalism. In Paris I saw that the simple and unlettered people had been led by their enemies to feel a cordial detestation for the Republic. The masses, whose judgment is guided by daily experience, had with little difficulty been induced to ask themselves: How did we fare under the Crown, and how is it now under the Republic? In the ensuing comparison the Republic came off second best. It was then only a step to the conclusion that the Republic was something detestable and that monarchy was far better.

{p. 42} I launched the Tribune of the People and through it I spoke to the masses.

Listen to me, I say, many of you have drawn the same conclusion that the long succession of disasters which we have suffered that the Republic is worthless and that monarchy is preferred. You are right - and I spell it out in capitals - WE WERE BETTER OFF UNDER THE BOURBONS THAN WE ARE NOW UNDER THE REPUBLIC. But, I continue, we must be clear which Republic we mean ... The real Republic is something of which we have not yet made trial. ...

The slogan of liberty and equality, which was for so long dinned into your ears, had a certain charm in the early days of the Revolution, because you believed that it contained real meaning. Today this slogan means nothing to you any more; it is only an empty oratorical flourish. But we must repeat again and again that this

{p. 44} slogan, notwithstanding all our recent painful experiences, can and should connote something of deep significance for the masses.

The Revolution, I went on, ought not to pass into history as an event without meaning. It is inconceivable that the people should shed their blood in torrents only to end up in greater torment than before. ...

{p. 48} The man who wills an end also wills the means to gain that end.

{p. 51} In the Tribune

{p. 52} of the People (number 55, page 102), I wrote:

In the beginning the soil belonged to none, its fruits to all. The introduction of private property was a piece of trickery put over on the simple and unassuming masses. The laws that buttressed property operated inevitably to create social classes - privileged and oppressed, masters and slaves.

The law of inheritance is a sovereign wrong. It breeds misery even from the second generation. ... Hence we find masters and servants even among the grandchildren of a single man.

The law of inalienability is no less unjust. This one man, already master over all the other grandchildren in the same line, pays what he will for the work they must do for him. ...

The gulf between rich and poor, rulers and rules, proceeds from yet another cause, the difference in value and in price that arbitrary opinion attaches to the diverse products of soil and manufacture. Thus a watchmaker's working day has been valued twenty times higher than a ploughman's or laborer's. The wages of the watchmaker enable him to get possession of the inheritance of twenty ploughmen ...

{p. 57} We must try to guarantee to each man and his posterity, however numerous, a sufficiency of the means of existence, and nothing more. We must try and close all possible avenues by which a man may acquire more than his fair share of the fruits of toil and the gifts of nature.

The only way to do this is to organize a communal regime which will suppress private property, set each to work at the skill or job he understands, require each to deposit the fruits of his labor at the common store, and establish an agency for the distribution of basic necessities. ...

A system such as this has been proven practicable by actual experience, for it is used by our twelve armies with their 1,2000,000 men. And what is possible on a small scale can also be done on a large one. ...

{p. 58} Such a regime, I continued, will sweep away iron bars, dungeon walls, and bolted doors, trials and disputations, murders, thefts and crimes of every kind; it will sweep away the judges and the judged ...

Such, gentlemen of the jury, was the body of truth that I concerned myself with and that I thought to have divined from my study of the ageless book of nature.

{p. 61} What are the quotations from Rousseau, that I shall cite later, doing here, if the intention is not to convict him along with us?

{p. 62} Poor Jean-Jacques! This will not save you from being sentenced in absentia ...

{p. 63} As you may easily see, it is writers like Rousseau who have subverted us. ... Rousseau, who is cast here in the role of our accomplice ...

{p. 64} Such are the ravings of Rousseau, our co-conspirator, about private property ... If the Genevan dreamer were still alive, he would learn soon enough that dissent is dangerous.

{end quotes}

Babeuf and A. A. Darthe were found guilty on May 24, 1797; sentenced on May 26; and executed on May 27. Seven others, including Philippe Buonarroti, were also found guilty, and deported (p. 11).

Buonarroti later memorialized Babeuf in his book Babeuf's Conspiracy for Equality, tr. Bronterre O'Brien, 1836.

6.5 Social Revolution from Babeuf to the Bolsheviks

The revolutionary movement spans centuries, from the French Revolution to Karl Marx, to the Bolsheviks, to our own time. And thus our investigation must delve into the historical continuity.

The Anarchist leader Bakunin wrote in his paper Federalism, Socialism, Anti-Theologism:

"Babeuf's conspiracy failed; he was guillotined, together with some of his old friends. But his idea of a socialist republic did not die with him. It was picked up by his friend Buonarroti, the arch-conspirator of the century, who transmitted it as a sacred trust to future generations".

According to James Billington, in his book Fire In the Minds of Men: Origins of the Revolutionary Faith, Buonarroti was a member of the Illuminati. Billington's big book is an account of the secret societies behind revolutions.

The back of the dust jacket of this book reads:

{quote} JAMES H. BILLINGTON has been, since 1973, director of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars ... he received his doctorate as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford ...{endquote}

Billington later became Librarian of Congress.

There's no mention in the book of the secret society of Cecil Rhodes for furthering the British Empire, which endows the Rhodes Scholarships to this day: rhodes-scholars.html.

And despite its size (677 pages, weighing 1.1 kgs), Billington's book manages to omit any Jewish connection to Revolutions.

That Jewish connection is, however, supplied by two impeccable Jewish sources, Benjamin Disraeli and J. L. Talmon.

Benjamin Disraeli wrote in his "novel" Coningsby, in 1844 (5th edition, published by Peter Davies, London, 1927):

'that mighty revolution which is at this moment preparing in Germany, and which will be, in fact, a second and greater Reformation, and of which so little is as yet known in England, is entirely developing under the auspices of Jews, who almost monopolise the professorial chairs of Germany. ... ' (p. 264).

Disraeli, writing in 1844, is referring (four years in advance) to the revolution of 1848, launched shortly after the appearance of The Communist Manifesto.

In 1852 Disraeli wrote in Lord George Bentinck: A Political Biography (Archibald, Constable & Co. Ltd., London 1905):

{p. 324} An insurrection takes place against tradition and aristocracy, against religion and property. Destruction of the Semitic principle, extirpation of the Jewish religion, whether in the mosaic or in the christian form, the natural equality of man and the abrogation of property, are proclaimed by the secret societies who form provisional governments, and men of Jewish race are found at the head of every one of them. The people of God co-operate with atheists; the most skilful accumulators of property ally themselves with communists; the peculiar and chosen race touch the hand of all the scum and low castes of Europe! And all this because they wish to destroy that ungrateful Christendom which owes to them even its name, and whose tyranny they can no longer endure.

When the secret societies, in February 1848, surprised Europe, they were themselves surprised by the unexpected opportunity, and so little capable were they of seizing the occasion, that had it not been for the Jews, who of late years unfortunately have been connecting themselves with these unhallowed associations, imbecile as were the governments the uncalled-for outbreak would not have ravaged Europe. But the fiery energy and the teeming resources of the children of Israel maintained for a long time the unnecessary and useless struggle. If the reader throws over the provisional governments of Germany, and Italy, and even of France, formed at that period, he will recognise everywhere the Jewish element. {endquote}

Disraeli's message is: if you don't want Communism, support Zionism. The West used this strategy in the Cold War.

More from Disraeli at disraeli.html.

J. L. Talmon wrote two studies of the revolutionary tradition. The first, The Origins of Totalitarian Democracy, "writes out" any mention of Jewish involvement.

The second, Israel Among the Nations, "writes it back in":

{p. 1} It has for a long time been almost an axiom that The Revolution was the ally, some were even wont to say saviour of the Jews, and that the Jews were the natural standard-bearers of the revolution. ... Those who should be most interested, revolutionaries of Jewish extraction, or revolutionaries in general, tend to deny the very legitimacy of the juxtaposition, 'Jews and revolution'. It is, they argue, men, classes, peoples who rise in revolt against oppression, that many revolutionaries have {p. 2} been of Jewish ancestry is quite irrelevant and the very desire to see it as relevant arises out of a sinister intention to discredit the cause of revolution itself ... Then there are those Jews who are unable to ignore the intimate relation between Jews and revolution, but wish they had never heard of it. ... {p. 69} Three years later the Tsar and all his family were helpless prisoners guarded by a Jew and a few Latvian assistants. ... - 'in the fact that the chief executioner of Tsar Nicholas II and his family in the Ekaterinburg cellar was a Jew', Jacob Yurovsky.

{p. 21} The great wave of revolutions in 1848, spreading with lightning speed from capital to capital, almost from town to town across Europe, was greeted by very many Jews as proof that all nations were about to enter into a revolutionary world association. {i.e. World Government, i.e. the messianic age}

Not only the democratic and Socialist aspirations, but even the national liberation movements bore at least in the early phase a distinctly universalist character. So great was the enthusiasm of the Jews that they were prepared to overlook the anti-Jewish excesses ... and even to proclaim that the victory of universal brotherhood had put 'an end to any distinct Jewish history', 'for liberty, like love, is cosmopolitan, wandering from people to people'.

There was hardly a revolution - that year of revolutions - in which Jews were not prominent or at least very active.

{end of quotes}

More of Talmon at talmon.html.

John S. Curtiss wrote a book (an Anvil Original) titled The Russian Revolutions of 1917 (D. Van Nostrand Company, Princeton, NJ 1957), in which the word "Jew" does not even appear in the index. Not surprisingly, Curtiss' book about the Protocols, titled An Appraisal of the Protocols of Zion (Columbia University Press, New York, 1942) takes a similar line to Herman Bernstein.

Nesta Webster's book Secret Societies and Subversive Movements is another indispensable source. First published in 1924, it is now issued by Omni Publications of Palmdale, Ca (no date supplied):

Unlike Marx, Babeuf and Buonarroti offered detailed plans for the New Order, but their organisation had the same "vanguard" and conspiratorial qualities as Lenin's.

Rousseau inspired the American Revolution of 1776, and French of 1789. As theorised by Rousseau and Babeuf, the New Order is nationalist: socialism in one country. However, as theorised by Weishaupt and later Marx, it is internationalist: on a world-wide scale: rousseau.html.

The divergence between the nationalist ("non-Jewish") and internationalist ("Jewish") forms of the New Order appears in the confrontation between the Stalinist and Trotskyist traditions, although that was complicated by the struggle between Slavs and Jews in Eastern Europe, the Jews having rallied to Trotsky, who described himself as a "non-Jewish Jew".

Stalin's purges reduced the dominance of the Jewish intelligensia which had rallied to the Bolsheviks during the civil war, and manned the bureaucracy for the first 20 years. These atheistic Jews had replaced the Germans, who provided similar professional and administrative services in Czarist Russia.

6.6 The "Social Revolution" as "Heaven on Earth"

We now connect the current "social revolution" in the Anglo-American countries, with its ancestors in France and Russia.

The U.S. is being undermined both by "right-wing" internationalist bankers and their lawyers, media and academics, and by "left-wing" subversives. The former destroy the American economy, while the latter launch a social revolution which destroys the metaphysics at the centre of society, and upon which its ethics and civility rests.

E.F. Schumacher, in his book Small Is Beautiful, quotes the statement "It was not barbarian attacks that destroyed the Greco-Roman world ... The cause was a metaphysical cause. The 'pagan' world was failing to keep alive its own fundamental convictions ... because owing to faults in metaphysical analysis it had become confused as to what those convictions were ... If metaphysics had been a mere luxury of the intellect, this would not have mattered".

Then he comments, "This passage can be applied, without change, to present-day civilisation." (p.90).

This revolution in the West was launched as much in the name of Socrates as of Marx - Socrates being the Christ of Enlightenment intellectuals.

Following the fall of Robespierre, Babeuf, in the trial prior to his execution, appealed to both Socrates and Christ (John Scott, op. cit.).

Works such as Scott's were being published and studied in the U.S. in the decade from the mid 60s to the mid 70s, because the revolution which had smouldered in nineteenth century Europe finally broke out in the United States at that time.

Marx opposed F. C. Baur's appropriation of Socrates to Christianity, in his book Das Christliche im Platonismus. He rejected Baur's depiction of Socrates as a Jesus-like figure, a forerunner of Christ, in his doctoral dissertation:

The Difference Between the Democritean and Epicurean Philosophy of Nature - in From the Preparatory Materials, Second and Sixth Notebooks. Collected Works, Volume 1, Progress Publishers, Moscow, 1975:

{p. 494} If therefore there is any analogy between Socrates and Chist, it must consist in the fact that Socrates is philosophy personified and Christ is religion personified.

{p. 495} In general it is far more correct to say that there are Platonic elkements in Christianity rather than Christian elements in Plato. {endquote}

This thesis displays the foundations of all Marx' later thinking, in particular his condemnation of Democritus for asserting the uncertainty of all human knowledge, and his praise of Epicurus for being, on the contrary, a dogmatist (op. cit, pp. 34-45).

Engels, in describing the history of the Communist movement, candidly admits the role of secret societies, unlike some later historians who pretend that all those uprisings happened purely spontaneously. Engels, History of the Communist League, in Lewis D. Feuer (ed), Marx & Engels: Basic Writings on Politics & Philosophy, 1959, pp. 459-470.

In the same article he states that the revolutionary movement had been underground (conspiratorial) until 1847, when the first Congress of the League of the Just was held. At this Congress the league was reorganised and renamed the "Communist League", and, coming out of its underground mode, "barred all hankering after conspiracy, which requires dictatorship".

Acknowledgement of the connection to Weishaupt is implied: "Whatever remained of the old mystical names dating back to the conspiratorial period was now abolished".

Such names (Spartacus, Philo, Gracchus etc.) had been a feature of Weishaupt's underground organisation, the Illuminati; although Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin etc. were "new names" in the same style.

The granting of such new names upon conversion to a new faith is reminiscent of the way Catholic monks and nuns, on admission to the order, gave up their old name and used a new, religious, one, that of a saint. Weishaupt, of course, would have been familiar with this.

In 1848 the Communist League commissioned Marx and Engels to write the Manifesto.

According to Marxist theory, the metaphysics at the core of a society's beliefs is but a fabrication, a smokescreen to legitimate the status quo; the real basis of the society is its economy.

The destruction of the U.S. economy in recent decades has been done by the internationalists, through laissez-faire policies which remove the operation of the economy as an issue for determination by the public, and hand it to private interests - moneylenders, local and foreign. Greed and manipulation were legitimated by economic theories based on deduction from first principles, in the Platonic style, as is the trademark of academia these days.

But if the social revolutionaries of the Left believed the economy to be so important, in line with Marx' view, why did they not try to save their own economy? In recent decades they have been more concerned with feminism and the gay movement, liberating students from the rigours of schooling, etc. Why did they take their economy for granted?

They were led by intellectuals forged by Trotskyist Internationalists. Germaine Greer writes in The Female Eunuch:

"Hopefully, this book is subversive ... the oppression of women is necessary to the maintenance of the economy ... If the present economic structure can change only by collapsing, then it had better collapse as soon as possible." (Paladin, 1972, p.21).

Greer continues,

"The most telling criticisms will come from my sisters of the Left, the Maoists, the Trots, the I.S., the S.D.S., because of my fantasy that it might be possible to leap the steps of revolution and arrive somehow at liberty and communism without strategy or revolutionary discipline. But if women are the true proletariat, the truly oppressed majority, the revolution can only be drawn nearer by their withdrawal of support for the capitalist system. The weapon I suggest is that most honoured of the proletariat, withdrawal of labour" (p. 22; the I.S. are International Socialists; they and the "Trots" are Trotskyist communists).

Trotskyism is thus at the heart of Radical Feminism, yet this fact remains un-commented on by the media which have promoted the Feminist and Gay movements.

Greer is here calling upon women to destroy the family. The family being a microcosm of society, the price of Radical Feminism is the social and economic destruction of the old society; but for what?

In 1920, Alexandra Kollontai, Lenin's Minister for Social Welfare, published a pamphlet called Communism and the Family (republished in Sydney in 1971), in which she uses the expression "heaven on earth", in describing the Bokshevik strategy:

"The red flag of the social revolution which will shether, after Russia, other countries of the world also, already proclaims to us the approach of the heaven on earth to which humanity has been aspiring for centuries".

The expression "social" revolution was the heritage of the French Revolution, whereas the American was little more than a "political" revolution. In the last 30 years, this same "social" revolution has shaken the entire Anglo-American world.

Marx himself used the expression "heaven on earth", in describing his goal at the First International:

"Someday the worker must seize political power in order to build up the new organization of labor; he must overthrow the old politics which sustain the old institutions, if he is not to lose heaven on earth, like the old Christians who neglected and despised politics" - Qualifying Violent Revolution (speech on September 8, 1872), Karl Marx Library, McGraw-Hill, 1971, Vol. 1, p.64.

Finally Engels explained the socialist heaven thus:

"The history of early Christianity has notable points of resemblance with the modern working-class movement. Like the latter, Christianity was originally a movement of oppressed people: it first appeared as the religion of slaves and emancipated slaves, of poor people deprived of all rights, of peoples subjugated or dispersed by Rome. Both Christianity and the workers' socialism preach forthcoming salvation from bondage and misery; Christianity places this salvation in a life beyond, after death, in heaven; socialism places it in this world, in a transformation of society". On the History of Early Christianity, in Collected Works of Karl Marx and Frederick Engels, Progress Publishers, Moscow 1975, Volume 27.

Marx' expression "lose heaven on earth" is elucidated by Engels a little further on, as follows:

'If, therefore, Professor Anton Menger wonders ... why ... "socialism did not follow the overthrow of the Roman Empire in the West", it is because he cannot see that this "socialism" did in fact, as far as it was possible at the time, exist and even became dominant - in Christianity. Only this Christianity ... did not want to accomplish the social transformation in this world, but beyond it, in heaven ..."

Engels' article On the History of Early Christianity is at

In the light of Engels' statements, it is clear that today's Liberation and Social Justice movements in the churches are Marxist in inspiration, and represent, not a return to the roots of Christianity, but an infiltration of the Churches, which Marx saw as the basis of the Old Order, by the Marxist movement.

For comparison, here is a speech by Trotsky on this theme:

A Paradise In This World, by Leo Trotsky

An Address delivered to a Working Class audience on April 14th, 1918

Published by British Socialist Party, London, 1920

{p. 19} ... we shall turn the whole globe into one world re-

{p. 20} public of Labour. All the earthly riches, all the lands and all the seas - all this shall be one common property of the whole of humanity ... one blossoming garden, where our chidren, grand-children, and great-grand-children will live as in a paradise. Time was when people believed in legends which told of a paradise. These were vague and confused dreams, the yearning of the soul of the oppressed Man after a better life. There was the yearning after a purer, more righteous life, and Man said: "There must be such a paradise, at least, in the 'other' world, an unknown and mysterious country." But we say, we shall create such a paradise with our toiling hands here, in this world, upon earth, for all, for our children and grand children and for all eternity! ... {end}

6.7 The Revolutions of 1848

6.7.1 J. L. Talmon, Israel Among the Nations, Weidenfeld and Nicolson, London 1970.

{p. 9} With the exception of the ultra-orthodox, desperately fearful of change of any kind, Jews everywhere looked upon the French Revolution as a date comparable to the exodus from Egypt, and to the issuing of the Law from Mount Sinai, this time not to the Jews alone, but to all the nations. France of the Revolution became to them a second country, to more exalted believers in the superiority of the spirit over matter, their sole spiritual fatherland, just as the Soviet Union was to millions of Communists throughout the world just a short while ago.

{p. 17} I believe that there is reason to speak of a certain common denominator linking the Jewish Saint-Simonists - among the first Socialists in France, Moses Hess - the first Communist (at a later date Zionist) in Germany, the two leading Socialists of Europe, Karl Marx and Ferdinand Lassalle, and many lesser Jewish figures in the camp of revolution.

To be sure, it was not the Jews who created that particular climate of Messianic revolutionary expectation and preparation which it takes today some effort of imagination to conjure up. Babeuf, Buonarotti, Blanqui, Barbes, Mazzini, Harney, Mieroslavski - none of them and hardly any of their immediate followers were Jews. But it was the Jews who experienced and articulated that state of mind with peculiar intensity and their restless zeal spilled over into effective organisational activity.

{p. 21} The great wave of revolutions in 1848, spreading with lightning speed from capital to capital, almost from town to town across Europe, was greeted by very many Jews as proof that all nations were about to enter into a revolutionary world association. {i.e. World Government, i.e. the messianic age}

Not only the democratic and Socialist aspirations, but even the national liberation movements bore at least in the early phase a distinctly universalist character. So great was the enthusiasm of the Jews that they were prepared to overlook the anti-Jewish excesses or gloss them over as tokens of too great an exuberance, misguided expressions of social resentment, marginal episodes, unavoidable accidents or counter-revolutionary provocations, or 'birth pangs, which bring redemption to our world'; and even to proclaim that the victory of universal brotherhood had put 'an end to any distinct Jewish history', 'for liberty, like love, is cosmopolitan, wandering from people to people'.

There was hardly a revolution - that year of revolutions - in which Jews were not prominent or at least very active.

{p. 22} In France, where there was no Jewish proletariat and where Jews except for the Jewish Saint-Simonists, were generally no further to the Left than bourgeois republicanism, Adolphe Cremieux and Goudchaux joined the government of the Republic as mild liberal Republicans. In Germany, where the Jews were more numerous, of a lesser social status, and less a part of the general society than across the Rhine, we find a much greater proportion of Jews in the Radical Left. Karl Marx is the editor of the extreme Neue Rheinische Zeitung, Jacoby is the spokesman of radical democracy ...

Although it would be a wild exaggeration to depict the wave of revolutions as led by Jews or as a result of a Jewish plot, it was possible for King Friedrich Wilhelm IV of Prussia to charge 'the circumcised' for having brought 'that shame upon Germany' ...

We have two astonishingly similar comments on the role of the Jews in the revolution from two eminent Jews standing at opposite poles of the political spectrum. One comes from Benjamin Disraeli in his Life of Lord George Bentinck, published in 1852, and the other from the German-Jewish Socialist J. L. Bernays in the

{p. 23} New York German-Jewish journal Israels Herold in 1849. Disraeli had set out to prove the superiority of the Jewish race.

{p. 24} {quote} Had it not been for the Jews ... imbecile as were the governments, the uncalled-for outbreak would not have ravaged Europe. But the fiery energy and the teeming resources of the Children of Israel maintained for a long time the unnecessary and useless struggle ... everywhere the Jewish element. ... And all this because they wish to destroy that ungrateful Christendom which owes to them even its name, and whose tyranny they can no longer endure. {endquote} ...

Bernays gives a similar evaluation of 'the Jewish element in the latest European movement', but in a spirit that he himself recognises 'will be considered by a large part of the readers as highly dangerous', namely that of joyous triumph, instead of the anxious regret of Disraeli. Bernays is soaked in young Hegelian modes of thought, and often employs the same terms as Marx, only to reach the opposite conclusion. Both were agreed that the surest way of destroying political and social oppression was through the destruction of the faith in and respect for God and all religious authority - the fountain-head of all systems of oppression and alienation which the Gentile leftist Hegelians like Feuerbach, Fr. D. Strauss, Rugge, and Bauer brothers actually set out to do. The Jews - Bernays claims - have succeeded in 'galvanising the raw mob' against Pope, bishops, kings and princes, feudal potentates and plutocrats. They 'laid bare the human essence buried under the thick crust of intolerance', and 'in the face of human worth, ... there comes an end to priest and Rabbi'. In order to obtain their emancipation, the Jews had first to destroy the Christian essence of the state, the 'Christian State'. 'They criticised Christianity with great dialectical skill and with no pity', and by becoming 'in the process atheists, radicals, they became truly free men, with no prejudices'. And once they had shown that the Christian religion was nothing but a myth, 'the work was accomplished'.

More than that, the Jews 'have rescued men from the narrow idea of an exclusive fatherland, from patriotism. ... The Jew is not only an atheist, but a cosmopolitan, and he has turned men into

{p. 25} atheists and cosmopolitans; he has made man only a free citizen of the world.' Almost consciously contradicting Marx's famous dictum on the emancipation of mankind through its emancipation from Judaism, and of the Jews from Judaism, Bernays triumphantly proclaims: 'In their struggle for emancipation the Jews have emancipated the European States from Christianity'. In other words it is not the Christians who gave emancipation to the Jews, the Jews enabled the Christians to obtain their own emancipation. 'The Jews took their revenge upon the hostile world in an entirely new manner ... by liberating men from all religion, from all patriotic sentiment ... from everything that reminded them of race, place of origin, dogma and faith. Men emancipated themselves that way, and the Jew emancipated them, and the Jew became free with them ... They achieved the incredible, and historians of the people will in the future recognise their merit willingly and justly.' It was not their religion or racial qualities that enabled theJ ews to accomplish all this. It was their existential situation, their fate: 'Only as the result of a general emancipatory effort could they become free themselves.' The Jews succeeded in forging for themselves some mighty levers of power to help them in their work: 'the power of mobile property represented by the Rothschilds'; the psychological, spiritually therapeutic influence of Jewish doctors whose very existence and sought-after activity defied religious taboos and differences of religion, race and tradition; and above all the press, 'which fell everywhere in Europe into Jewish hands'. And when the revolution broke out, the Jews were everywhere in the forefront. After all, Christendom had now become atheistic and cosmopolitan, the Jews might as well leave the stage as a separate people. Their mission had been fulfilled. In a Hegelian manner the highest assertion of their particularity marks their disappearance within universality.

{p. 26} Bernays and the Jews in general, so eager in that year of universal brotherhood to renounce their corporate identity, in some cases even their religious separateness, entirely misread the real significance of the revolutionary upheaval. The victor in that revolution proved to be not universalism, but nationalism of the exclusive type {symbolised by Emperor Napoleon III, target of Maurice Joly's Dialogues}; not abstract idealism, but historic continuity; not rationalism, but the powers of instinct; not the idea of concord, but the fact of force. The Jews became the test case and whipping-block, when the victory of these counter-revolutionary forces had time to work itself out.

In the meantime, some fifteen years after the debacle of the revolutionary hopes in 1848, two Jews emerged as the acknowledged leaders of the revolution. German workers made their appeal to the Jewish litterateur Lassalle to become their chief and in response the young dictatorial leader launched his terrific campaign, which was cut short by his death in an absurd duel, and Karl Marx became the head of the First International.

At that very time the problem of Jews and revolution began to assume truly vital significance in the Empire of the Tsars.

{end of quotes}

More of Talmon at talmon.html.

6.7.2 Benjamin Ginsberg, The Fatal Embrace: Jews and the State, University of Chicago Press, Chicago 1993).

{p. 17} In the decades after the war, governments became increasingly {p. 18} dependent upon foreign borrowing - an activity that the Rothschilds came to dominate. Between 1818 and 1832, Nathan Rothschild handled 39% of the loans floated in London by such governments as Austria, Russia and France. Similarly, the Vienna and Paris branches of the family raised money and sold bonds for the Hapsburgs, Bourbons, Orleanists, and Bonaparts. By mid-century, the entire European state system was dependent upon the international financial network dominated by the Rothschilds. In the 1860s and 1870s, another Jewish financier, Baron Gerson von Bleichroeder, was a principal figure in the creation of a united German state. Bleichroeder helped Bismarck obtain loans for the war against Austria after the chancellor failed to secure financing from the Prussian parliament. Subsequently, Bismarck entrusted Bleichroeder with negotiating the indemnity to be paid by France after its defeat in the Franco-Prussian War in 1871 (on the French side, negotiations were conducted by the Rothschilds).

{p. 18} Significant numbers of Jews participated in the liberal revolutions of 1848 in central Europe. In Germany, Jews fought at the barricades in Berlin and helped to lead the Prussian national assembly and

{p. 19} Frankfurt parliament. Such intellectuals as Heinrich Heine and Ludwig Borne were major publicists and propagandists for the liberal cause. In Austria, Jews participated in the Vienna uprising and helped to formulate a new liberal constitution. In Hungary, 20,000 Jews enlisted in the national army formed by Louis Kossuth. The constitutions of most of the liberal regimes established in 1848 provided for emancipation of the Jews. After these regimes were overthrown by conservative forces, however, many of the Jews' new privileges were rescinded. Central European Jews continued to support liberal movements even after the revolutions of 1848 were defeated. In the 1860s and 1870s Austrian and German rulers were compelled to make concessions to liberal forces, and Jewish disabilities were removed as they had been earlier in France and Britain when liberal regimes were consolidated in those countries....

In France, Jews supported the liberal revolution of 1848. Two prominent Jews, Adolphe Cremieux and Michel Goudchaux, served the Second Republic as ministers of justice and finance, respectively. The accession of Napoleon III brought an end to this short-lived regime, and Jews played little role in the Second Empire that followed. After the rout of French forces in the Franco-Prussian War and the collapse of the Second Empire in 1870, Jews were active in the founding of the Third Republic. The Rothschilds organized the payment of the German war indemnity, and a number of Jews participated in the early republican governments. Cremieux once again served as minister of justice; Eugene Manuel, Narcisse Leven, and Leonce Lehmann occupied important government posts; and several Jews served in the Chamber of Deputies.

{p. 20} Between the Franco-Prussian War and the First World War, Paris was a major international banking and financial center, and Jews were among the dominant figures in French finance. In the late nineteenth century, roughly one-third of all Paris bankers were Jews. {endquote}

More of Ginsberg at ginsberg.html.

7. Napoleon III's Rule

7.1 Napoleon III's Political Program

Napoleon III, Napoleonic Ideas - originally published as Des Idees Napoleoniennes, par le Prince Napoleon-Louis Bonaparte, in July, 1839. Edited by Briston D. Gooch, Harper Torchbooks, New York, 1967.

Napoleon III here writes (before he became Emperor) of his uncle, Napoleon I, and sets out his program.

{p. 41} The Domestic Situation

The different governments which held power successively from 1789 to 1800 obtained great results in spite of their excesses. The independence of France had been maintained, the feudal system had been broken up, and salutary principles had been widely spread. Nevertheless, nothing was as yet solidly established; too many hostile elements stood face to face.

At the epoch when Napoleon arrived at power, true legislative genius consisted in judgments based on an awareness of how past, present, and future were related.

{p. 42} It was necessary to solve and answer the following questions:

What ideas have passed away never to return?

What ideas must ultimately triumph?

Finally, what ideas are susceptible of immediate application, and will hasten the reign of those destined to prevail?

The Emperor rapidly discerned these various distinctions, and though he clearly foresaw the possibilities of the future, he confined his action to the realization of present possibilities.

The great difflculty in revolutions is to avoid confusion in popular ideas. The duty of every government is to oppose false ideas and to guide true ones by placing itself boldly at their head; for if a government allows itself to be led instead of guiding, it hastens to destruction and compromises society instead of protecting it.

The Emperor acquired his immense ascendency so easily because he represented the true ideas of his age. As to harmful ideas, he never attacked them frontally, but always flanked, parleyed and negotiated with them, finally reducing them to submission by moral influence, for he knew that violence is unavailing and worthless against ideas.

Having always an object in view, he employed the promptest means which circumstances permitted to attain it.

What was his ultimate object? ... Liberty!

Yes, liberty! and the more one studies the history of Napoleon, the more will he be convinced of this truth. For liberty is like a river; in order that it may bring abundance and not devastation, it is necessary to prepare for it a broad and deep channel. If in its regular and majestic course it remains within its natural limits, the regions it traverses bless its passage; but if it comes like an overflowing torrent, it is regarded as the most terrible of calamities; it awakens every form of distrust, and then one

{p. 43} sees men in their fear reject liberty because she may destroy, as if one should banish fire because it may burn or water because it may inundate.

But is it said liberty was not secured by the imperial laws? The name of liberty was not, it is true, placed at the head of every law or placarded at every public square, but every law of the Empire prepared for its peaceful and certain reign.

When in a country there exist parties exasperated with each other and possessing violent mutual hatreds, it is necessary for these parties to disappear and for these hatreds to be pacified before liberty is possible.

When in a country become thoroughly democratic like France, the principle of equality is not generally applied, it must be introduced into all the laws before liberty is possible.

When there is neither public spirit nor religion nor political faith, it is necessary to create at least one of these elements before liberty is possible.

When the ancient manners and customs have been destroyed by a social revolution, it is necessary to create new manners and customs in harmony with the new principles before liberty is possible.

When there is no longer an aristocracy in a nation, and nothing remains organized but the army, it is necessary to reconstruct a civil order based upon a precise and regular organization before liberty is possible.

Finally, when a country is at war with its neighbors and contains in its bosom partisans of its enemies, it is necessary to conquer those enemies and convert them into sure allies before liberty is possible.

We must pity those who wish to reap before having plowed the field or sown the seed or given to the plant the necessary time to germinate, to blossom, and to ripen its fruit. It is a fatal error to imagine that a declaration of principles is sufficient to constitute a new order of things.

{p. 44} After a revolution the essential thing is not to make a constitution but to adopt a system which, based upon popular principles, possesses all the force necessary to found and establish and which, while surmounting the difficulties of the moment, possesses flexibility enough to adapt itself to circumstances. Besides, after a conflict, can a constitution safeguard itself against reactionary passions? How dangerous it is to attempt to convert transitory necessities into general and permanent principles! "A Constitution," Napoleon has said, "is the work of time; one cannot provide in it too broad a power of amendment."

We proceed to recapitulate under the preceding points of view the actions of the Emperor. To judge is to compare. We will compare his reign with the epoch which preceded it and with the epoch which followed. We will judge his plans by what he did when victorious - by what he has left in spite of his defeat.

When Napoleon returned from Egypt all France received him with enthusiasm, regarding him as the savior of the dying Revolution. France, fatigued by so many successive efforts, agitated by so many different parties, had gone to sleep amidst the thunder of her victories, and seemed about to lose the fruit of what she had acquired. The government was without moral force, without principle, without virtue. Furnishers and contractors were at

{p. 45} the head of society and held the highest rank in the midst of corruption. Generals of the army, such as Championnet at Naples and Brune in Lombardy, feeling that they were the strongest, began to refuse obedience to the government and imprisoned its representatives. Credit was annihilated, the treasury was empty, public stock had fallen to eleven per cent, waste was rife in the administration, the most odious brigandage infested France, and the provinces of the west were in a constant state of insurrection. Finally, the old regime approached again with alarming speed, for the axe of the lictor no longer protected the cap of liberty.

Everybody talked of liberty and equality, but each party wished them only for itself. We want equality, said some, but we do not wish to grant the rights of citizenship to the relatives of nobles and of emigrants, and we propose to leave 145,000 Frenchmen in exile. We want equality, said others, but we do not wish to give offices to conventionalists. Finally, we want liberty, but we are for maintaining the law which condemns to death those whose writings tend to recall the old regime; we are for maintaining the law of hostages, which destroys the security of 200,000 families; we are for maintaining the impediments which nullify the liberty of worship, etc., etc. Such contradictions between professed principles and their practical application tended to introduce confusion into ideas and things. It must have been so as long as there was not a national power which, by its stability and conscious strength, was exempt from passion and able to give protection to all parties without losing any of its popular character.

{end of quotes}

7.2 How Napoleon III Came to Power

7.2.1 Jean Sigmann, 1848: the Romantic and Democratic Revolutions in Europe, tr., Lovett F. Edwards, George Allen & Unwin, London 1973.

{p. 228} The crushing victory won on 10 December 1848 by Louis Napoleon was primarily due to the peasantry. But the workers too had a considerable share in it; with their five-and-a-half million votes, the "nephew of the little corporal" defeated the candidate of the bourgeoisie, the republican General Cavaignac (one-and-a-half million), leader of the executive and "prince of the blood" since his triumph in June and also crushed that of the Left-wing parliamentarian Ledru-Rollin (370,000), the socialist Raspail (37,000) and Lamartine (17,000) the symbol of a dead hope.

Universal suffrage had put an end to the revolution in April. Was it now to substitute the Empire or the Monarchy for the Republic? To this alternative the day of 13 June 1849 gave an answer of which the people dimly perceived the anachronism.


7.2.2 Documents in the Political History of the European Continent 1815-1939. Selected and edited by G. A. Kertesz, Clarendon Press, Oxford 1968:

{p. 98} 43. Prince Louis Napoleon Bonaparte in 1848

Although Prince Louis Napoleon Bonaparte, a nephew of Napoleon I, tried to return to France repeatedly after the February Revolution, and in fact was elected several times to the Assembly, the Government and the National Assembly prevented his return until September. He was then allowed to take his seat in the National Assembly (a), and became a candidate in the presidential elections in December, winning them with an overwhelming majority. Part of his programme is included under (b). The two selections provide an interesting contrast to the documents in section VII.

Source: The Political and Historical Works of Louis Napoleon Bonaparte (London, Illustrated London Library, 1852), vol. i, pp. 96-7, 101-5.

(a) Louis Napoleon's Speech on taking his Seat in the Assembly, 27 September 1848.

Citizen representatives:

I cannot longer remain silent after the calumnies directed against me. I feel it incumbent on me to declare openly, on the first day I am allowed to sit in this hall, the real sentiments which animate and have always animated me. After being proscribed during thirty-three years, I have at last recovered a country and my rights of citizenship. The Republic has conferred on me that happiness. I offer it now my oath of gratitude and devotion, and the generous fellow-countrymen who sent me to this hall may rest certain that they will find me devoted to the double task which is common to us all, namely, to assure order and tranquillity, the first want of the country, and to develop the democratical institutions which the people has a right to claim. During a long period I could only devote to my country the meditations of exile and captivity. Today a new career is open to me. Admit me in your ranks, dear colleagues, with the sentiment of affectionate sympathy which animates me. My conduct, you may be certain, shall ever be guided by a respectful devotion to the law. It will prove, to the confusion of those who have attempted to slander me, that no man is more devoted than I am, I repeat, to the defence of order and the consolidation of the Republic.

{p. 99} (b) Louis Napoleon's Programme, November 1848.

Fellow Citizens:

In order to recall me from exile, you elected me a representative of the people. On the eve of your proceeding to the election of chief magistrate of the republic, my name presents itself to you as a symbol of order and security.

These testimonies of a confidence so honourable are due, I am aware, much more to the name which I bear than to myself, who have as yet done nothing for my country;- but the more the memory of the Emperor protects me, and inspires your suffrages, the more I feel myself called upon to make known to you my sentiments and principles. There must not be anything equivocal in the relations between us.

I am not an ambitious man, who dreams at one time of the Empire and of war; at another of the adoption of subversive theories. Educated in free countries, and in the school of misfortune, I shall always remain faithful to the duties which your suffrages, and the will of the Assembly, may impose upon me.

If I am elected President, I should not shrink from any danger, from any sacrifice, to defend society, which has been so audaciously attacked. I should devote myself wholly, without reserve, to the confirming of a republic, which has shown itself wise by its laws, honest in its intentions, great and powerful by its acts.

I pledge my honour to leave to my successor, at the end of four years, the executive powers strengthened, liberty intact, and a real progress accomplished.

Whatever may be the result of the election, I shall bow to this will of the people; and I pledge beforehand my co-operation with any strong and honest government which shall re-establish order in principles as well as in things; which shall efficiently protect our religion, our families, and our properties - the eternal basis of every social community; which shall attempt all practicable reform, assuage animosities, reconcile parties, and thus permit a country rendered anxious by circumstances, to count upon the morrow.

To re-establish order is to restore confidence - to repair, by means of credit, the temporary depreciation of resources - to restore financial positions and revive commerce.

{p. 158} 74. Decree dissolving the National Assembly, 2 December 1851

Louis Napoleon Bonaparte, having been elected president in 1848 (cf. No. 43(b)) worked hard at making himself and his policies popular in the country and, indeed, by 1851, was assured of substantial support not only among the population, but also in the National Assembly. Many thought that only his continuance in the presidency could assure the maintenance of internal peace and order, but re-election of a president after his four-year term was prohibited by the 1848 constitution.

Petitions for the revision of this provision were received in large numbers durng 1851 (many of them organized by the prefects), and the National Assembly voted by a large majority in favour of such revision, but it was short of the constitutionally required two-thirds majority. Louis Napoleon and his entourage therefore decided on a coup d'etat which, after several postponements, took place in the early hours of 2 December 1851. The first step was the dissolution of the National Assembly.

Source: The Political and Historical Works of Louis Napoleon Bonaparte (London, Illustrated London Library, 1852), vol. ii, p. 354.

In the name of the French people the President of the Republic decrees:

I. The National Assembly is dissolved. 2. Universal suffrage is re-established. The law of the 31st of May is abrogated. 3. The French people is convoked for their votes from the 14th December to the 21st December following. 4. The state of siege is decreed throughout the first military division. 5. The Council of State is dissolved. 6. The Minister of the Interior is charged with the execution of the present decree.

75. Proclamation and Decree on the Plebiscite, 2 December 1851

The dissolution of the National Assembly (No. 74) was justified by Louis Napoleon in the proclamation that follows (a). In it, he also indicated the main constitutional changes he wanted to introduce and announced the holding of a plebiscite to ascertain the will of the people. The terms of the plebiscite are contained in his decree (b)

Source: Annual Register, 1851, pp. [254-5, 201].

1 In this law the Assembly, against the wishes of the president, re-introduced restrictions on the suffrage.

{p. 159} (a) Proclamation of 2 December 1851.


The present situation cannot last much longer. Each day the situation of the country becomes worse. The Assembly, which ought to be the firmest supporter of order, has become a theatre of plots. The patriotism of 300 of its members could not arrest its fatal tendencies. In place of making laws for the general interest of the people it was forging arms for civil war. It attacked the power I hold directly from the people; it encouraged every evil passion; it endangered the repose of France. I have dissolved it, and I make the whole people judge between me and it. The Constitution, as you know, had been made with the object of weakening beforehand the powers you entrusted to me. Six millions of votes were a striking protest against it, and yet I have faithfully observed it. Provocations, calumnies, outrages, found me passive. But now that the fundamental part is no longer respected by those who incessantly invoke it, and the men who have already destroyed two monarchies wish to tie up my hands in order to overthrow the Republic, and to save the country by appealing to the solemn judgment of the only sovereign I recognize in France - the people.

I, then, make a loyal appeal to the entire nation; and I say to you, if you wish to continue this state of disquietude and uneasiness that degrades you and endangers the future, choose another person in my place, for I no longer wish for a place which is powerless for good, but which makes me responsible for acts that I cannot hinder, and chains me to the helm when I see the vessel rushing into the abyss. If, on the contrary, you have still confidence in me, give me the means of accomplishing the grand mission I hold from you. That mission consists in closing the era of revolution, in satisfying the legitimate wants of the people, and in protecting them against subversive passions. It consists especially in the power to create institutions which survive men, and which are the foundation on which something durable is based. Persuaded that the instability of power, that the preponderance of a single Assembly, are the permanent causes of trouble and discord, I submit to your vote the fundamental bases of a constitution which the assemblies will develop hereafter. ...

{p. 165} 78. The Re-Establishment of the Empire, November-December 1852

After Louis Napoleon took power as president for ten years in 1851, it was clear that it would not be long before he assumed the imperial dignity. In November 1852 a senatus consultum (a) was passed proposing this modification of the constitution, and was approved by a large majority in a plebiscite (b).

Source: Annual Register, 1852, pp. [263-4, 267] (with emendations).

(a) Senatus Consultum, 7 November 1852.

1. The imperial dignity is re-established. Louis Napoleon Bonaparte is Emoeror of the French under the name of Napoleon III. 2. The imperial dignity is hereditary in the direct descendants, natural and legitimate, of Louis Napoleon Bonaparte ... 8. The following proposition shall be submitted to the people for acceptance in the form determined by decrees: 'The people desires the re-establishment of the imperial dignity in the person of Louis Napoleon Bonaparte, with the succession in his direct descendants natural and legitimate or adopted; and gives him the right to regulate the order of succession to the throne in the Bonaparte family ...'

(b) Decree on the Re-establishment of the Empire, 2 December 1852.

Seeing the senatus consultum, dated 7 November 1852, which submitted to the people the following plebiscite:

[text in paragraph 8 of No. 78(a)];

{p. 166} Seeing the declaration of the Legislative Body, which proves that the operations of the vote have been everywhere freely and regularly accomplished;

That the general summing up of the votes on the plebiscite has given seven millions eight hundred and twenty-four thousand one hundred and eighty-nine (7,824,189) bulletins bearing the word 'Yes';

Two hundred and fifty-three thousand one hundred and forty-five (253,I45) bulletins bearing the word 'No';

Sixty-three thousand three hundred and twenty-six (63,326) invalid bulletins: We have decreed and decree as follows:

1. The senatus consultum of the 7th of November, 1852, ratified by the plebiscite of the 21st and 22nd of November, is promulgated and becomes the law of the State. 2. Louis Napoleon Bonaparte is Emperor of the French under the name of Napoleon III.

79. Senatus Consultum amending Article 42 of the Constitution, 2 February 1861

The first of the liberalization measures which, though still with restrictions, enabled the public at large to be informed of the debates of the Chambers.

Source: F.-A. Helie, Les constitutions de la France (Paris, Duchemin, 1880), p. 1272 (trans. Ed.).

Article 42 of the Constitution is amended as follows:

The debates in the sessions of the Senate and the Legislative Body shall be taken down in shorthand and inserted, in full, in the official gazette of the following day.

In addition, reports of these sessions, compiled by editorial secretaries under the authority of the president of each Chamber, shall be put at the disposal of all newspapers each evening. ...

{p. 167} 80. Senatus Consultum amending articles 4 and 12 of the Senatus Consultum of 25 December 1852, 31 December 1861

This is another important liberalization measure. Before it, the budget had to be debated and voted as a whole: under the new arrangement it became possible to discuss the estimates of each ministry separately. At the same time, the control of the Legislative Body over supplementary or extraordinary estimates was extended.

Source: F.-A. Helie, Les constitutions de la France (Paris, Duchemin, 1880) pp. 1274-5 (trans. Ed.).

I. The estimates of expenditure shall be presented to the Legislative Body set out in sections, chapters and articles. The estimates of each ministry shall be voted by sections. The appropriations voted for each section shall be allocated to its chapters by a decree of the Emperor made in the Council of State. 2. Special decrees, made in the same form, may authorize transfers from one chapter to another within the estimates of the same ministry. 3. Supplementary or extraordinary appropriations may only be granted by law ...

81. Imperial decree concerning the Relations of the Government with the Senate and the Legislative Body, 19 January 1867

The importance of this decree is that it enables members of the two Chambers to raise questions in public session, asking for an explanation by the minister concerned. In this way grievances could be aired, and actions of the executive criticized. While it is true that

{p. 168} the general debate on the address in reply was abolished as part of this reform, the possibility of raising specific matters amply compensated for the loss.

Source: F.-A. Helie, Les constitutions de la France (Paris, Duchemin, 1880) p. 1283 (trans. Ed.).

1. Members of the Senate and of the Legislative Body may address interpellations to the Government. 2. All requests for interpellations must be in writing and signed by at least five members. Such requests must explain the subject of the interpellation in summary form; they are to be sent to the president who communicates them to the minister of state and sends them to committees for examination. 3. If two committees of the Senate or four committees of the Legislative Body are of opinion that the interpellations may take place, the Chamber shall set a day for the debate. 4. After the close of the debate, the Chamber may resolve the return to the order of the day, or to communicate with the government. 5. Return to the order of the day always has priority. 6. Communication to the Government must always be couched in the following terms: 'The Senate or the Legislative Body brings the subject of the interpellations to the attention of the Government.' - In this case an extract of the debate is sent to the minister of state ... 8. Articles 1 and 2 of our decree of 24 November 1860 which order that the Senate and the Legislative Body shall each year, at the beginning of the session, vote an address in reply to our speech, are abrogated.

82. The Liberal Empire, 21 May 1870

After further measures of liberalization in 1869, the Emperor submitted, on 23 April 1870, a senatus consultum to the people, who were asked to approve the new constitution contained in it. The document that follows consists of the proclamation making public the result of the plebiscite and introducing the new constitution, the most important new provisions of which are included in summary form.

Source: F.-A. Helie, Les constitutions de la France (Paris, Duchemin, 1880), pp. 1323-7 (trans. Ed.).

{p. 169} Napoleon, by the grace of God and the national will Emperor of the French, to all present and to come, greeting.

In view of our decree of 23rd of April last which convoked the French people in its electoral assemblies to accept or reject the following proposition:

'The people approves the liberal reforms of the Constitution introduced by the Emperor, with the consent of the great bodies of the State, since 1860 and it ratifies the senatus consultum of the 20th of April l870';

In view of the declaration of the Legislative Body which states that the operations of the vote have been everywhere freely and regularly accomplished; and that the general summing up of the votes on the proposition has given 7350,142 bulletins bearing the word 'Yes'; 1,538,825 bulletins bearing the word 'No'; and 112,975 invalid bulletins;

We have sanctioned and sanction, we have promulgated and promulgate as the constitution of the State the senatus consultum adopted by the Senate on the 20th of April 1870 the text of which is as follows: -

Senatus Consultum Establishing the Constitution of the Empire.

[The following are some of the more important changes from the Constitution of 1852, the provisions of which, if not expressly superseded, remain in force:

The Senate and the Legislative Body as well as the Emperor now have the initiative in introducing legislation;

A Council of Ministers is established; the ministers are responsible; they may be members of the Senate or the Legislative Body;

The Constitution can be altered only by the people on the proposal of the Emperor.]

{end of quotes}

8. Assessments of Napoleon III

Having connected up the various revolutionary movements, we must now re-focus on Joly and his historical context.

Joly's Dialogues was written during the rule of Emperor Naploeon III of France, and directed against him. Given the despotic nature of Bolshevism, and the plan for such despotism enunciated in the Protocols, it is instructive to compare Napoleon with the Bolsheviks, to see which has the worse record for killing, torture etc.

It will be seen that the Bolsheviks win hands-down; it's no contest. But those claiming the Protocols a forgery, must pin the despotism on Napoleon III rather than the Bolsheviks.

As Joly presents it, Napoleon III is the Machiavellian, fooling the people; as the Protocols present it, the Revolutionaries are the Machiavellians, causing chaos and turmoil, and aiming at totalitarian control and a Reign of Terror.

8.1 David L. Kulstein, Napoleon III and the Working Class: A Study of Government Propaganda Under the Second Empire, The California State Colleges, [Sacramento?], 1969.

{p. 37} Louis Napoleon also attempted to gain the support of the socialist P.-J. Proudhon. In September, 1848, he arranged a meeting with Proudhon and the republican {Jacques} Joly to discuss the political and social problems faced by France.

{footnote 130: Alfred Darimon, A travers une revolution (1847-1855) (Paris, 1894), 68 ff. Darimon was Proudhon's secretary.}

{p. 42} A bitter satire on the press during the Second Empire by the republican journalist Maurice Joly, despite its exaggerations, also contains much that is true.

{footnote 17: Maurice Joly, Dialogues aux enfers entre Machiavel et Montesquieu ou la politique de Machiavel au XlXe siecle (Brussels, 1864), 139 ff. The publication of this "revolutionary book" gained Joly a sentence of fifteen months in prison. ... The famous antisemitic tract, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, is a paraphrase of Joly's work. Konrad Heiden, Der Fuerrer (New York, 1944), 1 ff.}

{end of quotes}

Natalie Isser's book The Second Empire and the Press (Martinus Nijhoff, The Hague, 1974) is similar in style to Kulstein's.

The material in Theodore Zeldin's book The Political System of Napoleon III (Macmillan, London 1958) is covered by other authors quoted below.

It is strange that Kulstein, who devotes many pages to Joly's account, should need to quote a book about Hitler, to claim that the Protocols is a paraphrase of Joly. In fact the parallel passages in Joly's Dialogues comprise less than 20% of the Protocols, by word-count. However, even in the parallel passages, the meaning is often different.

Kulstein, presumably Jewish himself, makes no mention of the specifically Jewish role in the revolutionary movement.

8.2 James H. Billington, Fire in the Minds of Men: Origins of the Revolutionary Faith, Maurice Temple Smith Limited, London 1980.

{p. 340} Napoleon III and "Imperialism"

The drama of deradicalizing the masses through a new type of journalism unfolded most vividly in the France of Napoleon III. In ways that contemporaries never understood - and historians have only begun to investigate - Napoleon turned revolutionary nationalism abroad into a means of political repression at home, and transformed revolutionary Saint-Simonian social ideas at home into a means of economic expansion abroad.

One cannot speak of the third Napoleon without speaking of the first; for the new Napoleon rode to power in large measure on the reputation of the old. Napoleon III was elected president of the Second French Republic by an overwhelming vote in December 1848, and was awarded dictatorial powers three years later by an even more staggering vote. The Napoleonic legend had continued to cast its spell over many revulutionary intellectuals.

The original French Revolution brought Napoleon I to power, and the original professional revolutionaries of the early nineteenth century came together largely to overthrow him. Revolutionary thinking about power was, thus, influenced from the beginning by this supreme man of power. He set the agenda for a generation by shattering all the old

{p. 341} political legitimacies: by politicizing the Enlightenment ideal of universal rationality (the metric system, the Code Napoleon); and by imposing it all on a backward world. Above all, he fed the romantic imagination with an aesthetic fascination with power - and with the possibilities of changing the map and the life of Europe.

Whether they came from the armies that fought with Napoleon (French Philadelphians, Polish Philomats, and most Italian Carbonari) or against him (Russian Decembrists, Spanish comuneros, German Tugendbund), the early revolutionaries were youthful soldiers who spoke French and thought in the grand Napoleonic manner. There was, then, a hidden model or "superego" for the original revolutionaries. Bonaparte was Prometheus unbound, a parvenu in power; and the young revolutionary was almost always both a restless Promethean and an outsider in search of power.

The most important revolutionary ideologies of the restoration era - Saint-Simonianism and Hegelianism - were born under the Napoleonic star. They continued to attract intellectuals who sought to provide purpose for (and thus gain access to) power. This politicization of the intellect intensified under Napoleon. Saint-Simon first began writing specifically in order to perfect and complete the Napoleonic reforms. His long and unsuccessful campaign to reach Napoleon directly gave him a permanent predilection for seeking out a power capable of putting his ideas into force. Hegel was enraptured by the Napoleonic conquest of Germany, and saw the hand of providence in the completion of his Phenomenology at the time of the Battle of Jena. His final political vision appears to have been a synthesis of Prussian reform with Napoleonic universality.

The rational reintegration of society preached by Hegel and Saint-Simon was inconceivable without the strange combination that Napoleon introduced into the world: a despot ruling in the name of liberation. However un-Napoleonic may have been the final hopes that Saint-Simon placed in the working class and Hegel in the Prussian state, the impulse to look for some universal secular transformation of society came as much from the concrete fact of Napoleon as from the abstract rhetoric of the revolution.

The Napoleonic legacy thus helped create the original revolutionary ideologies; and the Napoleonic legend helped in more subtle ways to revive and intensify the revolutionary impulse in the 1840s. The boredom with the politics and style of Louis Philippe would not have been so acute in a land that did not have a Napoleon to remember. The insecure Louis Philippe, in search of some genealogy of legitimacy, cultivated an identification with Napoleon. He returned the ashes of Napoleon to Paris for reburial in the Invalides, and erected his statue in the Place Vendome.

There had long been a body of Frenchmen who considered themselves reform Napoleonists as distinct from militaristic Bonapartists. In the 1840s their ranks were swelled by others whose political hopes focused on Napoleon's nephew, the future Napoleon III, who had been

{p. 342} active in the Italian revolutionary movement and had vainly tried twice to have himself proclaimed emperor in the late 1830s. This new Napoleon wrote in 1839 the influential Des Idees Napoleoniennes {excerpted below}, which called for a new supra-political authority avoiding all doctrine and seeking only concrete benefits for the masses.

This influential work, which sold 500,000 copies in five years, reflected the ideas of the Saint-Simonians whom Napoleon had befriended during his English exile of the late 1830s. He followed them in preferring administrative solutions over ideological or political ones and in his early interest in a possible canal through Nicaragua to further the "mystic marriage of East and West."

The young Saint-Simon had progressed from early dreams of becoming a new Charlemagne to his final appeal for justice to "the poorest and most numerous class." Napoleon III in like fashion turned from writing a life of Charlemagne in the early forties to a new vision of increasing production and ending unemployment in his work of 1844: Extinction of Pauperism.

Napoleon III did not share Napoleon I's fatal opposition to ideology. Unlike the first Napoleon, who came back from Egypt and Italy as a man of war, the third Napoleon returned to France from London as a man of ideas. He adopted as his own the Proudhonist proposal for workers' associations and benefits, and transformed the Saint-Simonianism of his youth into an authoritarian industrialism and an anticlerical positivism that greatly strengthened the French state (and, incidentally, helped to gain for many surviving Saint-Simonians lucrative positions in banking, industry, and government service). In this respect Bismarck was his imitator, transforming Hegelianism, the ideological system hitherto prevalent among German revolutionaries, into a new and conservative German nationalism. The roots of this neo-Hegelianism lay in the tract of 1857 calling for the building of a monument to Hegel, but warning that none would be adequate "until the German nation would build its state into the living temple of purest realism." When Bismarck became premier of Prussia five years later he capitalized on the passion of Hegelian intellectuals for political relevance by enlisting many of them in the tasks of German state-building. Many came to believe that Hegel's vision of a rational ordered society giving birth to a neo-Hellenic flowering of high culture might soon become reality in the new Germany Bismarck was building.

The principal "Napoleonic idea" was the cooptation of French revolutionary rhetoric by the patriotic press, which Napoleon III controlled brilliantly. The problem of the press was inescapable for anyone trying to restore order to France. Triumphant in elections, Napoleon faced the challenge of a free press:

{quote} ... the great question of the century ... the greatest difficulty for constitutional order, the greatest danger for weak governments, the decisive proof of strong ones. {endquote}

Initially, Napoleon III reacted negatively to the challenge. But his harsh press laws of 1852 were gradually relaxed. He provided a general am-

{p. 343} nesty for the press in 1859, and soon entered the lists of chauvinistic journalism with his own anticlerical, quasi-socialist L'Opinion Nationale.

Napoleon created the "national opinion" that he purported to describe. So thoroughgoing was his control of the press that one critic complained before the legislature in 1862: "There is one journalist in France ... the Emperor." In addition to controlling the news agency Havas and flooding the market with sloganized pamphlets (L'Empire c'est la paix, Le salut c'est la dynastie), Napoleon bought off opposition newspapers, streamlined the official Le Moniteur, and added a readable evening edition in 1864. This Petit Moniteur was published in editions of 200,000 and sold at a depressed price of six centimes - thereby undercutting all other competitors, who had to pay a minimum tax of five centimes on each issue. The satirist Maurice Joly, in his Politics of Machiavelli in the Nineteenth Century of 1864, described the technique as "neutralizing the press by the press itself."

{In footnote 102 on p. 612, Billington writes, "Cited from Joly, Dialogues aux enfers entre Machiavel et Montesquieu ou la politique de Machiavel au XlXe siecle, Brussels, 1864, cited in Kulstein, 42-3. The famed anti-Jewish tract, Protocols of the Elders of Zion, was to a large extent a paraphrase of Joly's work." Kulstein's work is excerpted above. Billingon's 677-page book on the revolutionary movements entirely "writes out" the Jewish connection, documented above by Disraeli and Talmon. So it is not surprising that he endorses Kulstein's book against Napoleon III, and the claim that the Protocols was plagiarised from Joly's Dialogues.}

Napoleon was a master of cooptation and public relations. He often offered prominent radical personalities jobs while stealing their slogans. He sponsored banquets and even associations for workers, and sought to channel their growing search for solidarity. Housing projects, mutual aid societies, and other meliorative programs were introduced and lauded with publicity on his imperial tours. Unlike Fazy in Switzerland, who introduced worker benefits out of long conviction and after careful study, Napoleon simply adopted what his monitoring of public opinion convinced him was expedient.

Historians have reached radically different verdicts on the motives and even on the results of the emperor's program. Essentially, he seems to have prepared the way for the characteristic political formula of the Third Republic: the combination of revolutionary rhetoric and practical reliance on a permanent centralized administration left over from the first Napoleon.

Napoleon continued his support of the Italian nationalist movement abroad, and espoused other, more remote national revolutionary causes. However, the suspicion soon grew that he was attempting to reroute abroad the popular impulses towards social revolution that had appeared at home in 1848 and 1851. "Emperor of the French" rather than of France, he increasingly seemed to use overseas adventure for dornestic prestige: war in the Crimea in 1854-56, conquest of South Vvietnam in 1862, and the disastrous attempt to conquer Mexico in 1866-67. All of this called forth a new word of rebuke from his erstwhile journalistic friends: imperialism. This, the last of the great isms to find a name, was used to describe the rapid expansion of European power overseas in the last two decades of the nineteenth century; but the term began with journalistic questioning of Napoleon III in the final "liberal period of his reign.

Napoleon's scourge during these final years was the last great polemic innovator of revolutionary journalism in the Francocentric era: Henri de Rochefort. His remarkable career illustrated both the vulnerability of Napoleon as a leader and the ultimate victory of his chauvinist ideal.

Rochefort came out of the same low culture that had created the

{p. 344} terms chauvinism and jingoism; he was a vaudeville writer and a pupil of both Blanqui and the chansonnier Beranger. He served his journalistic apprenticeship on Figaro before launching in the late 1860s his radical La Lanterne and La Marseillaise and contributing to Victor Hugo's new Le Rappel of 1869. Rochefort's was the direct voice of proletarian ribaldry: a Daumier in prose with just a suggestion of Rabelais, promising to "register the misery of the laborers" alongside "the toilets of the Tuileries." The very title of his first journal dispensed with the romantic past and invoked the plebeian image of a gaslight atop an iron support on a Parisian street corner. "The Lantern," Rochefort bluntly explained, "can serve simultaneously to illuminate honest men and to hang malefactors." His principal target was Napoleon, whom he assaulted with an unprecedented barrage of animal metaphors. His journal soared to an unprecedented printing of 500,000, and its easily concealed, pocket-sized format gave it European-wide distribution. When forced to flee to Brussels, Rochefort resumed publication of The Lantern with a model declaration of revolutionary independence from cooptation by Napoleon:

{quote} The role of the government is in effect to amnesty me as soon as possible; but my role is not to let them ... It is original, it is even burlesque. ... {quote}

Although Napoleon succeeded in having the weekly shut later in 1869, Rochefort simply transferred his energies to a daily, La Marseillaise, which one of his collaborators called "a torpedo launched at high speed against the metal plates of the imperial navy," and a future leader of the Paris Commune called a "machine of war against the Empire." If France was still the "light of the world" 1ll for foreign revolutionaries, his journal was the main beacon.

Rochefort and his associates "proposed to rally the entire European socialist party to establish through the journal permanent relations between all the groups." Such plans were fanciful, but his format was widely imitated. Students in distant St. Petersburg (including Marx's principal Russian correspondent, Nicholas Danielson) tried to set up a journal with the same title and format.

Within France, Rochefort's appeal was so great that it had to be combatted not just with repression, but also with rival attractions. Girardin moved into the vacuum, and, as we have seen, he became in the late years of Napoleon's reign a leading troubador of nationalism and foreign war. Taking over the moribund La Liberte in the late 1860s, he lifted its circulation from 500 to 60,000 through a journalistic revolution that was "perhaps as significant as that of 1836 of which it was in any case the natural consequence and prolongation." The new mass audience that he thus created found its excitement no longer in The Three Musketeers and the gossip columns of La Presse, but in images of actual combat in the real world - telegraphic dispatches of distant military adventures, bulletins of a rising and falling stockmarket, and athletic contests that La Liberte was the first to cover regularly in its new section, le monde sportique.

{p. 345} Rochefort himself was eventually seduced by the new chauvinism - despite having served ten years in New Caledonia for supporting the Paris Commune and having founded a new journal of revolutionary opposition to moderate republicans (appropriately named The Intransigent) on Bastille Day 1880. He swung to the Right late in the decade to support General Boulanger, moved further to the Right a decade later during the Dreyfus case, and left The Intransigent altogether in 1907 to spend the last six years of his life writing for the conservative, nationalist La Patrie. ...

The most dramatic and fateful event of the watershed year, 1871,

{p. 346} was, however, the rise and fall of the Paris Commune. It triggered the swing to the Right throughout Europe - and opened up new horizons for the revolutionary Left.

The Paris Commune

The Paris Commune of 1871 was the largest urban insurrection of the nineteenth century - and precipitated the bloodiest repression. It was a watershed in revolutionary history: the last of the Paris-based revolutions, bringing to an end the French domination of the revolutionary

The Paris uprising was the first example of mass defiance of the new military-industrial state in modern Europe. The Commune created - however briefly - an alternative, revolutionary approach to the organization of authority in modern society. Successful subsequent revolutionaries in Europe followed the communard example of making revolution only in the wake of war. Whereas the revolutions of 1789, 130, and 1848 had occurred in times of peace, those that rocked Russia in 1905 and 1917, and brought other communist regimes into power in China, Yugoslavia, and Vietnam in the 1940s, were the direct outgrowth of foreign wars.

The Commune left a legacy of legends as well as lessons. It provided the Russian Revolution with holy relics (Lenin was buried with a communard flag, and the spaceship Voskhod was equipped forty years later with a ribbon from a banner of the Commune), and with holy images ( the classic icon of class conflict in Eisenstein's October - bourgeois ladies jbbing fallen workers with pointed parasols - was taken from a mural in the Paris museum of the Commune).

Myths of the Commune abounded among anarchists as well as Social Democrats. In the period prior to World War I; among Chinese cultural revolutionaries of the 1960s no less than Russian political revolutionaries fifty years earlier; among the New Left as well as the Old in the Western world.

Insofar as all later revolutionaries were to find unity among themselves, it was in the singing of the great hymn that emerged from the martyrdom of 1871: the Internationale.

The simple fact of the Commune was that a revolutionary alliance ruled Paris for seventy-two days in the spring of 1871. It began as a patriotic protest against capitulation to the Prussian siege of Paris by a provisional French government formed after the defeat and flight of Napoleon III in September 1870. But the Commune soon became a vehicle for proletarian protest against the modern centralized state. An internal social revolution became a means of restoring pride to the

{p. 347} nation after the state had suffered defeat in a foreign war.

{end of quotes}

8.3 Andre Maurois, A History of France, University Paperbacks, Methuen, London 1964



THE sequence of events leading from the Second Republic to the Second Empire was roughly parallel to that which, at the century's beginning, had led from the Directory to the First Empire. The Constitution of January 1852 created in fact, if not in name, a consul in the Bonapartist sense of the word, meaning a dictator. This 'president', elected for ten years, held the executive power and had the sole right to make treaties and war; he proposed all legislation and appointed all officials; neither he nor his ministers were responsible to the Chambers. Said the Prince: 'I am quite willing to be baptized in the waters of universal suffrage, but I do not intend to live out my life with wet feet.' Three major bodies were to assist the President: the Council of State, which framed the laws; the Legislative Body (elective, but selected from a list of official candidates) which voted the laws; and the Senate, which was made up of one hundred and fifty members appointed for life by the President and acting as watchdogs of the Constitution - watchdogs who in fact watched very little. No provision was made for the case of a conflict between the President and the Legislative Body. 'I view as a serious evil', said Montalembert, the Catholic orator and one of the few courageous men in this Assembly, 'the annihilation of all control and the debasement of the only elective body existing in the French Government ...' The 1852 Constitution applied in full rigour the Bonapartist doctrine that despotism, in order to win acceptance, must present itself as a people's dictatorship and a temporary expedient. 'Freedom', as Louis Napoleon put it, 'has never helped in the establishment of a lasting political structure; freedom crowns such a structure when time has made it strong.' Surely he had never read the history of the United States. No more than that of the Second Republic was the 1852 Constitution practicable. 'A Constitution which does not afford a State the means of change does not afford it the means to maintain itself.'

The emperor was already beginning to hatch out of the prince-presidential shell; the eagle was replacing the republican pike on flagstaffs, and people called it the 'Eagle's first flight'. Whenever the President travelled

{p. 401} through the provinces, Persigny, more Bonapartist than this Bonaparte, had his claque cry out: 'Long live the Emperor!' The Prince lectured the masses on the excellences of a Government which would keep France as she had been 'after regeneration by the 1789 Revolution and organization by the Empire'. Soon he was able to announce: 'The burst of enthusiasm which has made itself felt throughout France in favour of restoring the Empire forces on the President the duty of consulting the Senate with regard to this matter.' The outcome of this consultation was a foregone conclusion; the Senate ordered a plebiscite on the re-establishment of the imperial dignity in the person of Louis Napoleon Bonaparte, and seven million eight hundred and thirty-nine thousand yeas made the Prince-President into the Emperor Napoleon III. (The King of Rome had been Napoleon II, just as the Dauphin of the Temple had been Louis XVII.) There were two hundred and fifty-three thousand nays and two million abstentions, particularly in the provinces which had remained monarchical. The only fear which might have held the French back from so dangerous a course would have been that of a fresh crop of Napoleonic wars, but Napoleon III had reassured them. 'The Empire means peace', he kept repeating, and not without meaning what he said. Of course a man bearing his name should, he thought, do great deeds; but if Napoleon I had brought France victories, Napoleon III could bring her peace, prosperity, industrial progress, the welfare of her people and perhaps, later on, freedom. 'I grant that, like the Emperor, I have many conquests to make. Like him, I want to win over to civilization the hostile parties. I want to win over to religion, morality, and comfort that portion of the population - still so numerous - which ... in the very bosom of the earth's most fertile soil, can barely obtain the prime necessities ...' His Government was to be that of cheap bread, great public works, holidays and leisure. He would have sincerely liked to be a good tyrant; sadly enough, there are no good tyrants.

At the time of his becoming emperor, Napoleon III was almost forty-five years old; he was a large, heavy man, not without dignity. His long moustache and goatee lent him a most novel appearance, in its day much imitated; his grey eyes seemed lustreless, without a spark, but on occasion they could flash like lightning. In France he had long seemed out of place; having lived there only as a child and later as a prisoner, he had no French friends outside his little band of faithful followers. A cosmopolitan prince, he spoke 'German like a Sviss, English like a Frenchman and French like a German' ...

{p. 404} Well intentioned but poorly counselled, Napoleon III began at a disadvantage. The Empire, which strove to combine a popular vote (the plebiscite) with hereditary power, was a hybrid regime; it had won the affectlons of the French in Napoleon I's time because France was then emerging from a frightful upheaval; exhausted by internal strife, bled white by the Terror, the country cried aloud for a peacemaker. Such was not the case in 18S2. Throughout Europe, men's minds were generally turning towards parliamentary govemment and freedom of thought. In France, the middle-class businessmen and peasants, terrified at socialism ever since the June Days of 1848, as well as at the sudden revelation of the strength of the working class, had wanted a sword and voted for the Empire. Through disgust and discouragement the workers had remained passive. But with few exceptions, the country's best minds and the student population were never reconciled to the regime; the coup d'etat was regarded as a crime; even the Empress herself remarked: 'It will be a millstone round his neck all his life.' Rebuffed by those whom he would have liked to allure, the Emperor could rely only on the interests which had created him and, like the Saint-Simonians, seek social progress through material prosperity. As we shall see, he succceded fairly well but prosperitv has never compensated for freedom.

The early days of the regime were rather briliant. In foreign policy, reasonable French pcople had feared that his theories might lead the Emperor to take a warlike attitude; would he demand the abrogation of the 1815 treaties, insist upon the natural frontiers, fly to the aid of

{p. 405} oppressed national groups? Quite the opposite - he did everything he could to reassure the rest of Europe. Not that he renounccd his great forebear's ambitions; but he knew that he must prevent the formation of a coalition in order to have any chanlce of achieving them, and that to do this he must remain on friendly terms with England, whose hatred had overthrown the First Empire. Now the British Government of that day was resolved to defend the Ottoman Empire against Russia; Napoleon III proposed an alliance against the Czar. The ensuing conflict meant to him a means of increasing his prestige by winning England to his cause, by appeasing the French liberals - who were the enemies of autocratic Russia and the friends of Poland - and, finally, by pleasing the Catholics, since the excuse for French intervention was the protection of the Holy Places. The Crimean War was far from easy, and at first the other side was victorious. 'This new Empire', wrote Victor Hugo, 'begins with 1812.' The campaign, however, ended in the fall of Sevastopol and a total Franco-British victory; the Zouaves at Malakoff and MacMahon with his famous, 'Here I am, here I stay', won their places amid the legendary heroes of the French army. The peace conference was held at Paris, thus confirming France's new-born prestige; the French Minister of Foreign Aflairs, Napoleon I's illegitimate son, Count Walewski, presided. France obtained no material advantage, but she had at last broken the league of the sovereigns against the Revolution and had even, she believed, gained the friendship of England and of Prussia. As Austria was from then on isolated, Napoleon III's schemes for the liberation of Italy had entered the realm of the possible. Unfortunately, despite his illusions, he really possessed the friendship of neither England nor Prussia. Yet on the morrow of the Crimean War, having humbled Russia, France's only rival on the Continent, he could believe himself Europe's most potent sovereign.

France's internal prosperity seemed to match her apparent success abroad; the early achievements of authoritarian regimes often seem propitious, some years being required to make clear the dangers inherent in the lack of freedom. Napoleon III was sincerely concemed about the welfare of poor people; under his reign, charitable associations, day nurseries and mutual-aid societies grew in number; in many of the larger cities, working-class quarters were erected which were unbeautiful but an improvement on the hovels they replaced. Today such paternalism would seem offensive; then it was thought effective. Napoleon was even considering the establishment of workmen's retirement pensions; in 1864 he

{p. 406} finally did away with the ban on workers' associations and acknowledged the right to strike. The conditions under which labour lived were still dreadful; the working day was twelve hours; in l'Assommoir and Germinal, Zola showed his readers the ravages of alcohol and promiscuity. Yet we must grant that the Empire did more to cure these evils than had the regimes before it, and it was able to do this because France's financial position was excellent. Never before had the country grown rich so quickly. Up to that time, private banks (Rothschild, Hottinguer, Mallet) had underwritten state loans and managed portfolios; a new breed of financiers - Pereire, Fould and later Germain - had the idea of turning to the public at large and soliciting that public's savings for investment. Thus were established the Credit Mobilier (which did not succced), the Credit Foncier and, ultimately, the Credit Industriel et Commercial, the Credit Lyonnais and the Societe Generale. First the lower middle class and then the peasants acquired the habit of investing in securities, and by this means large-scale, corporate capitalism developed.

Savings canalized by these banks, paid for France's economic development; the State encouraged railway construction and granted the systems a guarantee of the interest on their indebtedness. In 1842, France possessed only 336 miles of track (as against about 3600 in the United States and 1650 in England); in 1860 she had 591; in 1870, 11,000. Transatlantic navigation companies were organized. Everywhere the regime fostered industrlal concentration; iron and coal mines were given as concessions to powerful corporations. The managers of banks, transport companles and mines were chosen from among a small number of families; a capitalist oligarchy, in good part Protestant or Jewish, gradually replaced the numberless family businesses of an older France and thereby confirmed the socialists in their regard for Marx's teaching, which had foretold this centralization. In conformity with Saint-Simon's notions great public works were undertaken to beautify the city of Paris, where poverty-stncken enclaves lay side by side with shiny newness; that city's prefect, Haussmann, a ruthless and arrogant man but a wonderful administrator, took on the task of supplying the capital with those broad avenues which the increased traffic and the tourists brouht in by the new railways made imperative. The Emperor in person had laid out the plan to transform the Paris of the Old Regime into the city of today. Certain writers found fault with the rectilinear boulevards. 'This is Philadelphia; it is Paris no longer', wrote Theophile Gautier; he had never seen Philadelphia, and the Parisians of today are grateful to Hauss-

{p. 407} mann for having spared their city congestion without having deprived it of its beauty. In 1855, a World's Fair attracted tlvc millil n visitors ho marvclled at France's industrial pow-er. Technically, and from the point of view of national wealth, the Empire had imposing results to its credit. Its Council of State and its prcfects were bcyond disputc ctficient, they vcre all too skilled at rcpression, but they were zcalous administrators.

Yet, in spite of the success of its prosperity policy, the Empire waa not a stable regime; it lacked that mysterious virtue, legitimacy. The adventurer seemed successful, but he remained none the less an adventurer; a muzzled public opinion was not convinced. A government which knows it is recognizcd as legitimate by the majority in the country has no fear of freedom; the imperial Government was so little sure of itself that it would not even allow the publication of the debates in a wholly domesticated Legislative Body. The newspapers, subject to censorship and to prior admonition, were cautious and pro-Government; even private conversations were subject to police surveillance: 'Only the Govermnent speaks, and no one belicves what it says.' The public got along as best it could; books by authors in exile (Victor Hugo, Edgar Quinet, Emile Deschanel, Louis Blanc) came in as contraband and won all the more readers because they were forbidden. The Orleans monarchists and the legitimists, although unable to agree among themselves and unite under one banner, joined in their fault-finding and constituted a so-called liberal group, extraordinary because of the abilities of such leaders as Thiers, Guizot, Montalelllbert, Dupanloup and Berryer. The French Academy was the stronghold of this intellectual Fronde; solemn addresses before it supplied opportunity for slightly veiled attacks against the Empire. 'Let's elect Lacordaire', said Victor Cousin, 'since we can't elect the Pope as a joke on the Empire.' However a few writers, such as Sainte-Beuvc, Merimee and Nisard, had attached themselves to the regime, allured by the Empress and the Princess Matilda; Sainte-Beuve went into the Imperial Senate, and the students clamorously upbraided him for it. As for the republicans, those who were not living in exile sought refuge in seclusion; whenever the exiles started plotting (which they did without skill and in vain, for they had lost contact with France and were fighting battles long out of date), new deportations at once afflicted their friends inside the country. When, in 1857, elections took place to renew the Legislative Body, the lack of all freedom of the press or of assembly, and the shameless placarding of official candidacies, discour-

{p. 408} aged the opposition. The requirement that every deputy should swear a personal oath to the Emperor kept out most of the republicans; between 1857 and 1863 the opposition in the Legislative Body consisted of only five members, among these being Emile Ollivier - who many regarded as a new Thiers - Jules Favre and Ernest Picard. In 1859 Napoleon felt strong enougn to grant a full and absolute amnest; Victor Hugo and Louis Blanc refused it; said Hugo: 'Until the end I shall share freedom's exile. When she returns, I shall return.'

The whole opposition was weak, and the Emperor could have overlooked a handful of malcontents had he not alienated two powerful conservative groups which until that time had supported him. A new phase in imperial policy was precipitated by a plot orgallized by the Italian carbonari, who could not forgive the Emperor Napoleon III for having forgotten the commitments of their 'brotber', Louis Napoleon Bonaparte. In his youthful days he had espoused the ause of Italian lndependence, but once he had come to power, he had reversed bis opinions and dispatched the Rome expedition in defence of the Pope's temporal power. In 1858 Orsini and three other Italian patriots hurled bombs at the Emperor's carriage, killing or wounding more than a hundred persons. This attempted assassination was followed by very harsh repressive measures, but it had surprising results in that it modified Napoleon III's Italian policy in the direction which Orsini desired. From his cell, the condemned man had written the Emperor beseeching him to give the Italians their freedom; were he to do this, his name wolld be loved and respected; were he not, the attempts would continue. In both the Empress and the Emperor this letter aroused fear and compassion; there was some question of a pardon for Orsini, who had suddellly becone a hero; then the hero was guillotined, but the cause for which he died triumphed. The Emperor had a secret interview with Cavour, Minister of the King of Piedmont (and Castiglione's uncle); it was agreed that France would help the Italians to drive out the Austrians and in return for its help, would obtain Savoy and the County of Nice.

This nationality policy, a favourite fancy of the Emperor's, seemed generous since France was going to help people of the same race, beld apart by force, to unite; in fact it vas fraught with daner. To establish new major States in Europe was to pave the way for fresh wars and, as far as France was concerned, to set up rivals, perhaps even enemies; for gratittude ls never a collective virtue. The Italian war began in 1859; the Austrian army was defeated by the French at Magenta and Solferino.

{p. 409} All Italy and especially the Romagna, rose against tbe Pope, whereupon the Empress and the French clerical party protested. Napoleon hesitated and temporized; and when, counter to his expectations, Prussia too sided against Italy, be signed an armistice with Austria - thus alienating the Italians - and then advised the Pope to yield - which alienated the French clerry. Ultramontane and liberal Catholics, hitherto split, joined forces to demand that the Emperor protect the Pope. Napoleon III could not refuse Rome to Italy; was he not the champion of the principle of nationality? Ultimately he begrudgingly defended the Holy See; Pius IX, however, had already turned to the French legitimists and had accepted their offer of volunteers, the papal Zouaves, who hoisted the white banner of the monarchy. Thereupon, through a plebiscite, King Victor Emmanuel created Italian unity and seized the greater part of the Papal States; the Emperor bad lost the Church's support without having won Italy's friendship and had succeeded in dissatisfying both liberals and clericals - a grave source of weakness in a France where the Church was more powerful than ever.

A second cause of discontent on the part of French conservatives was Napoleon III's free-trade policy. In this connection, as in the matter of nationalism, he was sincere and sought the State's welfare. Having lived in England in the days of tbe great debate over protection, and having observed the victory of free trade and the prosperity which followed, he was determined to push France towards international free trade. The French industrialists, however, protested. Secretly and without consulting them, the Emperor in 1860 negotiated a treaty with Great Britain which eliminated all embargoes, lowered all tariffs and, in return, obtained concessions for certain French products such as wine. There folloued a geeral and most unjust outcry from all French industry; the manufacturers thought they were ruined and cursed the Government. Thus under attack from both clericals and capitalists, Napoleon was inclined to draw nearer to the mass of the people and the republicans - a tendency in the Bonapartist tradition and corresponding to the Emperor's personal preference. Thus began that new regime which was called the Liberal Empire.

{end of quotes}

8.4 J. P. T. Bury, France 1814-1940: A History, Methuen, London, 1959

{p. 94} In the first new phase of the Eastern Question France played a leading part. When a dispute arose between Latin and Orthodox monks over the guardianship of the Holy Places of Jerusalem, Napoleon was quick to seize the chance of restoring France's traditional interests in the Levant ... But Russia soon intervened on behalf of the Orthodox and widened the issues by demanding that the Turks should grant her a virtual protectorate over all Orthodox Christians within their Empire. To Britain, long suspicious of Russian designs, and to France, whose parvenu Emperor had been treated scornfully by the Tsar as an upstart, such claims were intolerable. France had long taken the British view of the Eastern Question and held that the balance of power and her own Mediterranean interests required that Constantinople and the Straits should be kept out of Russian hands; and so, when in 1853-4 Russian troops entered the Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia and attempts to negotiate a settlement broke down, the two powers went to war to prevent the Turkish Empire from being crushed by Russia.

{p. 95} The Crimean War could be said to have been a war which accorded with French interests. Far otherwise was it with the Italian campaign of 1859 which was to carry the Empire to its turning-point. Here Napoleon's Italophile sentiment, due partly to his ancestry, partly to his early associations with the Carbonari and to his participation in the 1831 rising in the Romagna, and partly to his liberal dreams, led him into a course of action which ran wholly counter to France's traditional policies. In his own entourage he had many people who were Italian in origin or sympathies, the beautiful Countess Castiglione, Prince Napoleon his cousin, Arese, Comleau, his doctor, and others, and who urged him to do something for Italy, the northern part of which was still largely under Austrian rule. ...

{p. 98} The year 1860 thus marked a turning-point in Napoleon's fortunes and in s policy towards the Catholics. Henceforth the relations of Church and State were less friendly. The Church no longer enjoyed such freedom of action, and the State system of education made notable progress under the direction of a man personally selected by the Emperor, Victor Duruy, who proved to be one of the greatest of all French Ministers of Public Instruction. The year was no less a turning-point in economic policy. The conclusion of a commercial treaty with Great Britain in that year, followed in 1861 by trade agreements with Belgium, Italy and Switzerland, and in 1862 by one with Prussia, gave an important impulse to greater freedom of international trade. But the Anglo-French Treaty, in many ways reminiscent of an earlier Treat of 1786, marked a striking departure from the rigid protectionist policy pursued by succcssive French Governments ever since the early years of the Restoration. As such it met with bitter hostility from some of the big land-owners and from many industrialists, especially the textile manu-

{p. 99} facturers of Normandy and the North and the iron masters of the East. The change was a victory for the Saint-Simonians and evidence of Napoleon's desire to bolster up the Anglo-French Entente, and although its most obvious effects were political it had some important economic and social consequences. More intensive competition from England hastened the concentration of certain industries in fewer firms and in many cases led to a renewal of plant or modernization of equipment. When factories had to be rebuilt there was generally a resulting improvement in the working conditions of the employees. On the other hand, many weaker firms went to the wall and others were obliged to reduce wages so that there was a considerable amount of temporary distress. This had unusually significant consequences, for it was partly responsible for the attempt of French workers to get into touch with the working classes of Britain which resulted in the formation of the First Workers' International. Nevertheless, in spitc of the temporary distress and the political resentments caused by the new policy, the statistics of French exports in general, and to Britain in particular, continued to show an upward trend. On French industry as a whole there can be little doubt that the 1860 Treaty acted as a healthy stimulant.

This wind of free trade was not the only breath of fresh air which the Emperor now let into France. Irritated by the opposition of the clergy and their sympathizers to his Italian policy, Napoleon had sought to conciliate the other main body of opinion, the Left, by an amnesty in 1859 and by greater leniency towards the Press. In 1860 he went further and issued a decree permitting the Senate and Chamber to discuss and vote an annual address in reply to the speech from the throne, and allowing reports of debates to be published in full. In the following year the Legislative Body was granted a wider measure of control over national expenditure. Thus public opinion once again had a certain restricted opportunity to form judgements about political issues and to exercise pressure. But instead of wining converts to Bonapartism these so-called Liberal reforms, by giving greater freedom to the enemies of the regime, tended only to confirm them in their intransigence. Already indeed, in 1857, five Republican deputies had been elected to the Legislative Body and had taken their seats, treating the oath of allegiance as a mere formality. The extreme Left may have welcomed the Italian war and the 1860 Treaty of Commerce, but they remained Republicans. Equally, many of the men who re-emerged on the Right were monarchists avowedly or at heart. ...

{p. 104} Farther east again New Caledonia had been occupied in 1853 and the persecution of French missionaries by the Emperor of Annam had led to another military expedition. In 1859 Saigon had been captured and within a few years France had gained full sovereignty over three of the provinces of Cochin China and established a protectorate in Cambodia. Furthermore, in Egypt, which French capital was rapidly helping to transform into a great cotton-growing country, the Frenchman, Lesseps, by cutting the Suez Canal, was engaged in a work which was to transform the strategic and commercial communications of the world. Thus in the new era of exploration and exploitation which was the prelude to the great 'Scramble' for Africa and other lands outside Europe in the last quarter of the nineteenth century, France of the Second Empire played an active and enterprising part. But the French public, as ever, was little concerned or interested in these distant happenings. Algeria was still widely looked upon as a source of military weakness and doubtful economic advantage which France would have been glad to abandon had she been able to do so without loss of prestige, and the potentialities of more remote territories were even less understood by the general public. Moreover, the success of French arms in the distant valleys of

{p. 105} the Senegal or the Mekong was soon completely overshadowed by the tragic failure of Napoleon's policy in Mexico.

Begun as a debt-collecting expedition of three powers, Great Britain, France and Spain in 1861-2, the Mexican venture developed into an attempt by France alone to establish a new Latin Catholic Empire in the New World.

{p. 108} The relaxation of the Press legislation in 1868 had put an end to the warning system and the necessity for prior government authorization before a paper could be launched and had led to an efflorescence of new journals, particularly in the provinces reminiscent of 1848.

{p. 109} It was disquieting, too, that the great cities remained strongly Republican, that revolutionary bodies and secret societies, many of them now more or less connected with the First Workers International, were beginning to operate again and that they were active in fomenting street demonstration from which Paris of the Empire had been singularly free; and that in the same year, 1870, troops had, for the first time since Napoleon came to the throne, been called in to repress a serious outbreak of strikes. All these signs seemed to suggest that the Empire was slowly decomposing. Yet it is possible that some French Republican historians have been easily led to exaggerate the strength of the Opposition and the unpopularity of the Empire. The voters in the plebiscite of 1870 were above all votes for peace and order - too many people remembered the disorders of the Second Republic to wish for their recurrence - but the Republican deputies' recognition of this fact meant that they at least would not begin a revolution though they would be ready enough to profit by one. Moreover, the plebiscite, as we have suggested, was still a vote for the Empire and, in the opinion of the latest historian of the working classes during this period, nearly twenlty years of power had done little to impair the hold of Napoleon upon the loyalty of the masses: 'Napoleon III, still strong in his seven million votes, retained a singular prestige.'

{end of quotes}

8.5 David Thompson, Europe Since Napoleon, second edition, Longmans, London 1963.

Note: Louis Philippe reigned as King from 1830 to 1848. Thompson's account begins with the Revolution of 1848.

{p. 183} ... it was to Paris, the traditional prompter for revolutionary performances, that rebels everywhere in Europe began to look. Faced with the popular rising in Paris on February 22, Louis Philippe decided to dismiss Guizot and his ministry. But the Paris mobs were fast getting out of hand, and the mischance of a volley from a company of regular troops which killed or wounded 52 of the crowd tipped the scale. Barricades were erected everywhere, gunsmiths' shops were looted, and Paris found itself in total revolution. The middle-class National Guard turned aainst the king. It was supported by moderate socialists like Louis Blanc and by extremist social revolutionaries, the disciples of Blanqui. On February 24 Louis Philippe was forced to abdicate, and in the Chamber of Deputies the poet Lamartine announced a list of liberal parliamentarians to form a new provisional government. They adjourned to the Hotel de Ville to agree on the allocation of offices. Lamartine himself took Foreign Affairs, the democratic radical Ledru-Rollin Home Affairs, with the aged Dupont de l'Eure as President. But it was one thing to set up a provisional government on paper, quite another to establish its authority in Paris and in the rest of France.

This group of moderate parliamentarians formed a self-constituted provisional government, acclaimed by the mob at the city hall. They were largely the journalistic staff of Le National, the liberal opposition paper founded in January, 1830, which had helped to undermine the rule of Charles X and had remained the chief opposition journal under the July Monarchy.

{p. 241} When Louis Napoleon, in December, 1852, made himself emperor of France by a coup d'etat, he reverted to a system of government closely modeled on that of his famous uncle. His rule was a usurpation of power, for a year earlier he had violently overthrown the republican parlianlentary regime which, as its elected president, he had sworn to preserve. He tried to mask and to legitimize this usurpation by three devices: by preserving the shadow of parliamentary government in the form of packed assemblies based on managed elections; by popular plebiscites; and by giving France, in his policy, what he thought would be most popular and most beneficial to the nation. His rule became a strange mixture of authoritarian government with increasing concession to parliamentary power and popular demands. Yet the final result was a development of France's parliamentary institutions which made the Third Republic of 1875 possible. This paradox of French politics in these decades springs initially from the enigmatic character of Napoleon III himself.

This strange man, to whom in 1848 five and a half million French men had been persuaded to entrust the presidency of the democratic Second Republic, had already had a colorful and varied career. Son of Napoleon's brother, Louis Bonaparte, king of Holland, he had assumed headship of the Bonapartist family and cause in 1832 when Napoleon's own son (called by courtesy Napoleon II) had died. In 1836 and again in 1840, with a handful of personal followers, he had tried to overthrow Louis Philippe by local risings that failed ridiculously. Imprisoned in 1840 he had escaped in 1846 by simply walking out of the fortress of Ham disguised as a stonemason. In the early months of 1848 the man, who in the 1830's had belonged to the Carbonari secret societies and who never lost his taste for cloak-and-dagger intrigues, could have been seen parading Piccadilly in the role of a special constable, defending the government of Queen Victoria against the dangers of Chartism. AIways a dreamer and intriguer rather than a practical statesman, he combined a

{p. 242} nostalgic faith in the destinies of his family with a genuine concern for the welfare of the poor and of the French people as a whole. From the moment when he was elected president of the Second Republic of 1848 by so overwhelming a majority, it seems certain that he intended to revive the regime, and if possible the glories, of the empire of Napoleon I. Nor was he without considerable abilities and qualities worthy of admiration. He had quickness of mind and imagination, ready sympathies for all in distress, great moral and physical courage. But he lacked a grasp of realities, and his ambitions and sympathies clouded his judgment both of men and of events. He had not the infinity of energy and patience needed to master details and clarify his purposes. His poor physical health increasingly impaired his power of decision, and from middle age onward (he was already forty-four when he became emperor) he suffered from disease and bad health. He had undoubted talents, but he certainly lacked the genius of Napoleon I.

The new constitution which he inaugurated in 1852 rested on principles which, in a preamble, he carefully expounded to the country. He himself, as chief of state, assumed almost monarchical powers: the power to make war and treaties, to choose ministers and nominate to all important offices in the state, to initiate legislation, and to frame the regulations in which the laws were embodied. The Legislative Body, of not more than 260 members elected by universal male suffrage, sat for only three months a year and had little real power. A senate of life members, chosen ex officio or nominated by the chief of state, had the duty of examining legislation to make sure it did not conflict with the constitution. Ministers were responsible only to Napoleon, and there was no collective cabinet responsibility. In short, as he explained, "Since France has only maintained itself in the last fifty years by means of the administrative, military, judicial, religious, and financial organization provided by the Consulate and the Empire, why should we not adopt the political institutions of that period?" Accordingly, he revived the Council of State, the very core of Napoleonic autocracy, "an assembly of practical men working out projects of law in their special committees, discussing this legislation behind closed doors, without oratorical display." In such a system, it was clear from the first, parliamentary power was reduced to a minimum, and France was ruled by a centralized despotism tempered only by opportunism and necessity.

Yet within the next eighteen years, because universal suffrage and parliamentary institutions did survive if only in attenuated form, because the ideals and habits of democratic government had become so deeply rooted in France, and because Napoleon found that a series of reverses in foreign policy corroded his personal popularity and prestige and forced him to seek fresh support from parliament, France recovered bit by bit a more genuine system of parliamentary government. Universal

{p. 243} male suffrage, instituted in 1848, he never dared to infringe though he manipulated elections. In 1860 he had to make important concessions to parliament. The Legislative Body was allowed to debate its reply to the speech from the throne, which expounded government policy: a restoration of the right that had been used with great effect by the parliamentary opposition between 1815 and 1848. Ministers began to defend government measures before the Legislative Body and became more accountable to it. The press, despite continued control and censorship, was allowed to publish fuller reports of parliamentary debates. From 1866 until 1869 further concessions had to be made to the growing clamor of the republican opposition. Control of the press and of public meetings was relaxed. Ministers could be questioned more closely and opposed more openly in parliament. Despite the resources of electoral management in the hands of the prefects and the powers of police supervision at the disposal of the government, a vigorous and eventually successful republican opposition grew up, led by men of the caliber of Adolphe Thiers, Leon Gambetta, and Jules Ferry. The so-called "Liberal Empire" which came into existence after 1860 was at least as real a parliamentary regime as was the constitutional monarchy before 1848.

The decline of autocracy in France can be measured by elecion results. In the elections of 1857 only seven candidates hostile to the government of Napoleon were returned; in those of 1863 thirty-five were returned; and in those of 1869 ninety-three. The big cities of Paris and Marseilles, Lyons and Bordeaux, especially opposed the Empire. This impressive development was due above all to the growing strength and effectiveness of the republican press. Under stringent press controls set up in 1852, the political press had been almost stifled. But, as under Charles X, there was an immediate increase in the number and the circulation of literary, philosophical, and apparently innocuous publications in which critics could make their political arguments obliquely but, to the initiated, very effectively. The amnesty granted to political prisoners and exiles in 1859 brought a rebirth of republican activity, especially in journalism. The strongest surviving moderate republican paper, Le Siecle, by 1866 reached the large circulation of 44,000. In 1868, when press controls were relaxed 140 new journals appeared in Paris within a year. Le Rapel contained the biting attacks of the literary giant Victor Hugo; and the mordant wit of the journalist Henri Rochefort won for La Lanterne a circulation of no less than 120,000. "The Empire," ran its famous opening sentence, "contains thirty-six million subjects, not counting the subjects of discontent."

The Empire, discredited by its succession of reverses abroad and in the failing grip of its sick emperor, could not have long survived such opposition even without the military defeat of 1870 to serve as its Water-

{p. 244} loo. Ranged against it too, were legitimist royalists like Antoine Berryer who wanted to go back behind 1830, moderate constitutional liberals like Thiers who wanted to go back behind 1848, the growing forces of socialism and of revolutionary communism represented by Blanqui and the supporters of the recently formed First International. But the toughest opposition came from two main groups, the liberals led by Thiers and the republicans led by Gambetta.

Before 1863 the parliamentary opposition was still no more than the five republican deputies for Paris and two others elected at Lyons and Bordeaux. But a liberal and republican opposition in the country was forming fast. It attracted brilliant lawyers like the "three Jules" (Jules Favre, Jules Simon, and Jules Ferry); and government prosecutions of journalists and agitators gave excellent opportunities for republican lawyers, as counsel for the defense, to expound republican principles within the immunity of courtrooms. The young Gambetta first revealed his formidable forensic and oratorical talents in helping to defend a group of republican journalists in a famous press trial of 1868. The opposition attracted eminent literary men like Victor Hugo, whose work Punishment (Les Chdtiments), written in exile, constituted a devastating attack on the Second Empire. When, in the elections of 1863 the Liberal Union (Union liberale) won 2 million votes and 35 seats, half of the 35 were republican. In 1864 Adolphe Thiers made his famous demand for the "five fundamental freedoms," which he defined as "security of the citizen against personal violence and arbitrary power; liberty but not impunity of the press, that is to say liberty to exchange those ideas from which public opinion is born; freedom of elections; freedom of national representation; public opinion, stated by the majority, directing the conduct of government." This remained the essence of left-center liberal programs for many years to come.

By 1868-69 the activities of the opposition became more open and militant. In the Paris salon of Juliette Adam, the banker's wife, republican leaders could discuss politics freely over dinner parties, and Gambetta found a new milieu of influence. By 1869 when he stood for the working-class Paris district of Belleville, he was able to expound what came to be known as the "Belleville Manifesto," a program of radical republican reforms. It was the outcome of the years of courageous republican opposition, and its essentials had already in 1868 been set out in Jules Simon's Politiqlle radicale. It went much further than Thiers's "five fundamental freedoms," and included universal male suffrage, for local as well as parliamentarv elections; separation of church and state; free, compulsory, and secular primary education for all; the suppression of a standing army; and the election of all public functionaries. As yet this radicalism represented only the advanced ideas of the working classes and lower middle classes of the big towns, and Gambetta was triumphantly elected

{p. 245} not only in Belleville but also in Marseilles. It was well in advance of what even most republicans wanted. But it foreshadowed the program of basic democratic reforms on which the great Radical party of the Third Republic was to build. In the new republic soon to be created Gambetta became the key man in the Republican Union, prototype of more modern party organization in France. The paradoxical achievement of the Liberal Empire was to accustom France to the existence and the consequences of an energetic constitutional opposition party, and to nurture a new movement of secular radicalism.

Bonapartist Benefits. The Second Empire achieved much else, more deliberately, in the sphere of social and administrative reorganization. Its most impressive achievement in the eyes of foreign visitors was undoubtedly the transformation of Paris. By a decree of 1860 the area of Paris was extended to include all the outskirts and villages between the customs barriers and the fortifications; this increased its administrative area from twelve to twenty administrative units. Whereas in 1851 Paris had just over one million inhabitants, in 1870 it had more than 1,800,000. The rapid growth of industry combined with the replanning of the city by Baron Haussmann, under the strongest encouragement of Napoleon III himself, changed the whole character of the capital. It changed it socially, for the pulling down of houses in the old labyrinths of the center to make way for Haussmann's broad new boulevards, squares, and parks forced many workers to the outskirts, where new factories grew up to utilize their labor; omnibus and local railway services made a larger city possible. It changed Paris administratively, for a much more highly organized system of local government and police had to be devised to rule so large a city. The broad straight boulevards had political significance, for they made the raising of barricades in working-class districts less practicable, and the charges of cavalry, police, and troops more effective. It changed Paris architecturally, for the Emperor's program of spectacular public works included the building of the new Opera house and extensions to the Louvre, new squares and churches; the encouragement of big new stores like the Bon Marche, the Printemps, and the Samaritaine and of joint-stock banks like the Societe Generale and the Credit Lyonnais.

With the new network of railways and steamship services Paris became more than ever the economic, social, and cultural center of France. Napoleon did all in his power to make it also the capital of Europe. Great exhibitions or world fairs were held in 1855 and 1867, and it was regarded as a diplomatic triumph to have the conference of powers which ended the Crimean War held in Paris. International showmanship, both commercial and political, was a constant feature of the Second Empire. It was an era of organization and depended on capital accumulation and investment, which Napoleon encouraged. Much of the real estate

{p. 246} development on the outskirts, which led to the present-day distinction between the central business and middle-class area and the outer "red belt" of working-class and industrial areas, was made possible by bankers like the Pereire brothers, Emile and Isaac, or the Paulin Talabot family. Inspired by the ideas of Saint-Simon, these new financial organizers hoped for a transformation of society through industrial progress and improved methods of social and economic organization. Down their bright new boulevards the inhabitants of the scientific, gas-lit Empire danced their way to the tinkling tunes of Offenbach - their way to the national disaster of Sedan and to the horrors of the Paris Commune of 1871.

It was a time when the more modern pattern of industrial society was taking shape. The year 1864, which saw the foundation of the industrial combine of the Comite des Forges, saw also the repeal of the clause in the French Penal Code which made concerted industrial action a crime. Trade unions, which since 179l had labored under the stigma of illegality, were now tolerated, and prosecutions slackened. Just as industrial workers found their own separate dwelling places in the expanding outskirts of Paris, so they found their own separate economic and political organizations in the trade unions. In 1864, too, the First International was formed. Before this Napoleon III had permitted and even encouraged mutual insurance groups - had he not, in 1844, written a pamphlet on the conquest of poverty? In 1862 he sent a delegation of workers, at public expense, to see the British Exhibition. They returned impressed with the new opportunities of collective bargaining which the British trade unions were discovering. After the legalization of labor unions in 1864 two main types evolved: the local association or trades council (chambre syndicale) and the more militant unit for collective bargaining (societe de resistance). Even so, labor organization did not become large in scale until near the end of the century, and it was 1884 before it won full legal rights. Meanwhile Napoleon, by a decree of 1853, implemented an idea which he had put forward in his pamphlet The Ending of Poverty (L'extinction du pauperisme). It revived and extended the Napoleonic idea of conciliation boards (Conseils de prud'hommes), composed half of representatives of employers, half of representatives of workers, with their chairmen, vice-chairmen, and secretaries nominated by the government. Designed to settle labor disputes and so prevent strikes, they were intended by Napoleon as an agency of public order and discipline. They were often means of improving working conditions and wages, and could sometimes become a focus for labor organization and agitation.

In general, the French people gained from having a paternalist. government during these years of rapid industrial growth. They escaped something of the hardships caused in Britain by a more rapid industrial

{p. 247} growth in a period when doctrines of minimum state interference held the field. Napoleon himself has been called "Saint-Simon on horseback," and there is no reason to doubt either the sincerity of his desire to improve material conditions or the reality of the benefits his rule conferred. Politically, his policy vacillated as he sought to appease now the Catholics, now the liberals, now the socialists, and always the demands of the populace as a whole. "To-day," he had written before coming to power, "the rule of classes is over, and you can govern only with the masses." His efforts to govern with the masses led to a series of disasters in foreign policy, for he believed (not entirely without justification) that the masses wanted glory and were intensely nationalistic. But these failures should not obscure the more positive material gains that France derived from his rule. "Half-pint Napoleon" (Napoleon le petit), Victor Hugo had scornfully dubbed him. The Second Empire, judged in terms of military glory or original achievement, was indeed only a pale shadow of the First. But it has considerable importance for the material development of France and for the shaping of modern Europe.

{end of quotes}

8.6 Writings of Karl Marx on France from 1848 to 1871

Karl Marx, The Class Struggles in France. In Karl Marx Frederick Engels Collected Works, Volume 10, Lawrence & Wishart, London 1978.

{p. 7} Introduction by David Fernbach

The Triumph of Reaction

In August 1850 Marx recognized that the revolutionary period of 1848 was at an end. A new revolutionary outbreak was not possible until the next cyclical trade crisis, and if Marx still believed that revolution would surely follow in the wake of this crisis, he no longer believed that a proletarian revolution could succeed in Germany until modern industry had developed more substantially. The development of the revolution, which had earlier seemed a matter of a few years, had now to be counted in decades.

If the 1850s and early 60s found Marx essentially a spectator of the political scene, this was by force of circumstance, not by his own choice. After the split in the Communist League in September 1850, Marx continued to work at rebuilding the League as the nucleus of a proletarian party in Germany, and at propagating the ideas of scientific communism on an international scale. But as the reaction consolidated itself throughout Europe, he found himself fighting a losing battle. The Central Committee of the Communist League, which was moved to Cologne following the split, was arrested en bloc in May 1851, and the League's German organization completely destroyed. Marx still attempted to hold together the London district, now once again the League's centre. However, the atmosphere of exile, always demoralizing, was doubly so for the German Communist refugees now that they were cut off from their comrades in Germany. Their community was riven by petty suspicion and intrigue, and many of the best Communists left to start a new life in North America. Marx and Engels themselves suffered the effects of exile. ...

{p. 8} A great deal of Marx's energy was devoted to the defence campaign for the Cologne Communist prisoners, who were only brought to trial in October 1852. After the trial, at which seven of the eleven accused were sentenced to between three and six years' imprisonment for 'attempted high treason', Marx wrote an expose of the case, and of the Prussian political police in general. But the Cologne convictions sealed the fate of the Communist League, and on 17 November the League was formally dissolved, on Marx's proposal.

The dissolution of the Communist League and the virtual disappearance of the German workers' movement for a whole decade indicates the immense gap between the programme Marx and Engels laid down in the Manifesto of the Communist Party and the real development of the proletariat at that time. With the collapse of the League Marx was plunged into twelve years of almost complete political isolation. Exiled in London, he had next to no contact with events in Germany ... Yet Marx's confidence in the future that his theory predicted for the workers' movement never abated, and in their most extreme isolation he and Engels continued to regard themselves as the true representatives of the workers' party.

{end of Introduction by David Fernbach; the remainder is by Karl Marx}

{p. 48} THE DEFEAT OF JUNE 1848

After the July Revolution, when the liberal banker Laffitte led his compere, the Duke of Orleans, in triumph to the Hotel de Ville, he let fall the words: "From now on the bankers will rule." Laffitte had betrayed the secret of the revolution.

It was not the French bourgeoisie that ruled under Louis Philippe, but one faction of it: bankers, stock-exchange kings, railway kings, owners of coal and iron mines and forests, a part of the landed proprietors associated with them - the so-called finance aristocracy. It sat on the throne, it dictated laws in the Chambers, it distributed public offices, from cabinet portfolios to tobacco bureau posts.

The industrial bourgeoisie proper formed part of the official opposition, that is, it was represented only as a minority in the Chambers. Its opposition was expressed all the more resolutely, the more unalloyed the autocracy of the finance aristocracy became, and the more it itself imagined that its domination over the working class was ensured after the mutinies of 1832, 1834 and 1839, which had been drowned in blood.

{p. 49} Owing to its financial straits, the July monarchy was dependent from the beginning on the big bourgeoisie, and its dependence on the big bourgeoisie was the inexhaustible source of increasing financial straits. It was impossible to subordinate the administration of the state to the interests of national production without balancing the budget, without establishing a balance between state expenditures and state revenues. And how was this balance to be established without limiting state expenditures, that is, without encroaching on interests which were so many props of the ruling system, and without redistributing taxes, that is, without shifting a considerable share of the burden of taxation onto the shoulders of the big bourgeoisie itself?

On the contrary, the faction of the bourgeoisie that ruled and legislated through the Chambers had a direct interest in the indebtedness of the state. The state deficit was really the main object of its speculation and the chief source of its enrichment. At the end of each year a new deficit. After the lapse of four or five years a new loan. And every new loan offered new opportunities to the finance aristocracy for defrauding the state, which was kept artificially on the verge of bankruptcy - it had to negotiate with the bankers under the most unfavourable conditions. Each new loan gave a further opportunity, that of plundering the public which had invested its capital in state bonds by means of stock-exchange manipulations, into the secrets of which the government and the majority in the Chambers were initiated. In general, the instability of state credit and the possession of state secrets gave the bankers and their associates in the Chambers and on the throne the possibility of evoking sudden, extraordinary fluctuations in the quotations of government securities, the result of which was always bound to be the ruin of a mass of smaller capitalists and the fabulously rapid enrichment of the big gamblers. As the state deficit was in the direct interest of the ruling faction of the bourgeoisie, it is clear why the extraordinary state

{p. 50} expenditure in the last years of Louis Philippe's reign was far more than double the extraordinary state expenditure under Napoleon, indeed reached a yearly sum of nearly 400,000,000 francs, whereas the whole average annual export of France seldom attained a volume amounting to 750,000,000 francs. The enormous sums which, in this way, flowed through the hands of the state facilitated, moreover, swindling contracts for deliveries, bribery, defalcations and all kinds of roguery. The defrauding of the state, practised wholesale in connection with loans, was repeated retail in public works. What occurred in the relations between Chamber and Government became multiplied in the relations between individual departments and individual entrepreneurs.

The ruling class exploited the building of railways in the same way as it exploited state expenditures in general and state loans. The Chambers piled the main burdens on the state, and secured the golden fruits to the speculating finance aristocracy. One recalls the scandals in the Chamber of Deputies, when by chance it leaked out that all the members of the majority, including a number of ministers, had been interested as shareholders in the very railway constructions which as legislators they caused to be carried out afterwards at the cost of the state.

On the other hand, the smallest financial reform was wrecked due to the influence of the bankers. For example, the postal reform. Rothschild protested. Was it permissible for the state to curtail sources of revenue out of which interest was to be paid on its ever-increasing debt?

The July monarchy was nothing but a joint-stock company for the exploitation of France's national wealth, the dividends of which were divided among ministers, Chambers, 240,000 voters and their adherents. Louis Philippe was the director of this company - Robert Macaire on the throne. Trade, industry, agriculture, shipping, the interests of the industrial bourgeoisie, were bound to be continually endangered and prejudiced under this system. Cheap government, gouvernement a bon marche, was what it had inscribed in the July days on its banner.

Since the finance aristocracy made the laws, was at the head of the administration of the state, had command of all the organised public authorities, dominated public opinion through the actual state of

{p. 51} affairs and through the press, the same prostitution, the same shameless cheating, the same mania to get rich was repeated in every sphere, from the Court to the Cafe Borgne, to get rich not by production, but by pocketing the already available wealth of others. ...

{p. 52} The eruption of the general discontent was finally accelerated and the mood for revolt ripened by two economic world events.

The potato blight and the crop failures of 1845 and 1846 increased the general ferment among the people. The dearth of 1847 called forth bloody conflicts in France as well as on the rest of the Continent. As against the shameless orgies of the finance aristocracy, the struggle of the people for the prime necessities of life! At Buzancais, hunger rioters executed; in Paris, oversatiated escrocs snatched from the courts by the royal family!

The second great economic event which hastened the outbreak of the revolution was a general commercial and industrial crisis in England. Already heralded in the autumn of 1845 by the wholesale reverses of the speculators in railway shares, staved off during 1846 by a number of incidents such as the impending abolition of the corn duties, the crisis finally burst in the autumn of 1847 with the bankruptcy of the London wholesale grocers, on the heels of which followed the insolvencies of the land banks and the closing of the factories in the English industrial districts. The after-effect of this crisis on the Continent had not yet spent itself when the February Revolution broke out.

The devastation of trade and industry caused by the economic epidemic made the autocracy of the finance aristocracy still more unbearable. Throughout the whole of France the bourgeois opposition agitated at banquets for an electoral reform which should win for it the majority in the Chambers and overthrow the Ministry of the Bourse. In Paris the industrial crisis had, moreover, the particular result of throwing a rnultitude of manufacturers and big traclers, who under the existing circumstances could no longer do any business in the foreign market, onto the home market. They set up large establishments, the competition of which ruined the small epiciers and boutiquiers en masse. Hence the innumerable bankruptcies among this section of the Paris bourgeoisie, and hence their revolutionary action in February. It is well known how Guizot and the Chambers answered the reform proposals with an unamhiguous

{p. 53} challenge, how Louis Philippe too late resolved on a ministry led by Barrot, how things went as far as hand-to-hand fighting between the people and the army, how the army was disarmed as a result of the passive conduct of the National Guard, how the July monarchy had to give way to a Provisional Government.

The Provisional Government which emerged from the February barricades necessarily mirrored in its composition the different parties which shared in the victory. It could not be anything but a compromise between the different classes which together had overturned the July throne, but whose interests were mutually antagonistic. The great majority of its members consisted of representatives of the bourgeoisie. The republican petty bourgeoisie was represented by Ledru-Rollin and Flocon, the republican bourgeoisie by the people from the National, the dynastic opposition by Cremieux, Dupont de l'Eure, etc. The working class had only two representatives, Louis Blanc and Albert. Finally, Lamartine in the Provisional Government: this essentially represented no real interest, no definite class; for such was the February Revolution, the general uprising with its illusions, its poetry, its imaginary content and its rhetoric. Moreover, the spokesman of the February Revolution, according to both his position and his views, belonged to the bourgeose.

If Paris, as a result of political centralisation, rules France, the workers, in moments of revolutionary earthquakes, rule Paris. The first act in the life of the Provisional Government was an attempt to escape from this overpowering influence by an appeal from intoxicated Paris to sober France. Lamartine disputed the right of the barricade fighters to proclaim a republic on the ground that only the majority of Frenchmen held that right; they must await the majority vote, the Paris proletariat must not besmirch its victory by a usurpation. The bourgeoisie allows the proletariat only one usurpation - that of fighting.

Up to noon of February 2 the republic had not yet been proclaimed; on the other hand, all the ministries had already been shared out among the bourgeois elements of the Provisional Government and among the generals, bankers and lawyers of the National. But the workers were determined this time not to put up with any fraud like that of July 1830. They were ready to take up the fight anew and to get a republic by force of arms. With this

{p. 54} message, Raspail betook himself to the Hotel de Ville. In the name of the Paris proletariat he commanded the Provisional Government to proclaim a republic; if this order of the people were not fulfilled within two hours, he would return at the head of 200,000 men. The bodies of the fallen were scarcely cold, the barricades were not yet cleared away, the workers not yet disarmed, and the only force which could be opposed to them was the National Guard. Under these circumstances the doubts born of considerations of state policy and the juristic scruples of conscience entertained by the Provisional Government suddenly vanished. The time limit of two hours had not yet expired when all the walls of Paris were resplendent with the historic, momentous words:

Republique francaise! Liberte, Egalite, Fraternite!

Even the memory of the limited aims and motives which drove the bourgeoisie into the February Revolution was extinguished by the proclamation of the republic on the basis of universal suffrage. Instead of only a few factions of the bourgeoisie, all classes of French society were suddenly hurled into the orbit of political power, forced to leave the boxes, the stalls and the gallery and to act in person upon the revolutionary stage! With the constitutional monarchy vanished also the semblance of a state power independently confronting bourgeois society as well as the whole series of subordinate struggles which this semblance of power called forth!

By dictating the republic to the Provisional Government and through the Provisional Government to the whole of France, the proletariat stepped into the foreground forthwith as an independent party, but at the same time challenged the whole of bourgeois France to enter the lists against it. What it won was the terrain for the fight for its revolutionary emancipation, but by no means this emancipation itself.

The first thing that the February republic had to do was, rather, to complete the rule of the bourgeoisie by allowing, beside the finance aristocracy, all the propertied classes to enter the orbit of political power. The majority of the great landowners, the Legitimists, were emancipated from the political nullity to which they had been condemned by the July monarchy. Not for nothing had the Gazette de Fronce agitated in common with the opposition papers ... The February republic finally brought

{p. 55} the rule of the bourgeoisie clearly into view, since it struck off the crown behind which capital kept itself concealed.

Just as the workers in the July days had fought for and won the bourgeois monarchy, so in the February days they fought for and won the bourgeois republic. Just as the July monarchy had to proclaim itself a monarchy surrounded by republican institutions, so the February republic was forced to proclaim itself a republic surrounded by social institutions. The Paris proletariat compelled this concession, too.

Marche, a worker, dictated the decreea by which the newly formed Provisional Government pledged itself to guarantee the workers a livelihood by means of labour, to provide work for all citizens, etc. And when, a few days later, it forgot its promises and seemed to have lost sight of the proletariat, a mass of 20,000 workers marched on the Hotel de Ville with the cry: Organisation of labour! Formation of a special Ministry of Labour! Reluctantly and after long debate, the Provisional Government nominated a permanent special commission to find means of improving the lot of the working classes! It consisted of delegates from the corporations of Paris artisans and was presided over by Louis Blanc and Albert. The Luxembourg palace was assigned to it as its meeting place. In this way the representatives of the working class were banished from the seat of the Provisional Government, the bourgeois part of which retained the real state power and the reins of administration exclusively in its hands, and side by side with the ministries of Finance, Trade, and Public Works, side by side with the Bank and the Bourse, there arose a socialist synagogue whose high priests, Louis Blanc and Albert, had the task of discovering the promised land, of preaching the new gospel and of providing work for the Paris proletariat. Unlike any profane state power, they had no budget, no executive authority at their disposal. They were supposed to break the pillars of bourgeois society by dashing their heads against them. While the Luxembourg sought the philosopher's stone, in the Hotel de Vlle they minted the current coinage.

And yet the claims of the Paris proletariat, so far as they went beyond the bourgeois republic, could win no other existence than the nebulous one of the Luxembourg.

In common with the bougeoisie the workers had made the February Revolution, and alongside the bourgeoisie they sought to assert their interests just as they had installed a worker in the Provi sional Government itself alongside the bourgeois majority. {end}

Karl Marx, Affairs in France. In Karl Marx Frederick Engels Collected Works, Volume 17, Lawrence & Wishart, London 1981. Published in the New York Tribune, February 7, 1860.

{p. 330} Paris, Jan. 17, 1860

Louis Napoleon has been converted to Free-trade, and is about to inaugurate a new era of peace. He can hardly fail to be enrolled as a member of the Society of Friends, and the year 181O will, in the annals of Europe, be recorded as the year 1 of the Millennium. This extraordinary news going the round of the London Press dates its origin from a letter of Louis Bonaparte published in the Moniteur, dated Jan. 15, 1860, and addressed to Mr. Fould, Minister of State. The first effect of the letter was to send the Funds down at Paris and to send them Up at London. ...

{p. 331} French foreign commerce has made immense strides from 1848 to 1860. Amounting in 1848 to about 875 millions francs, it has risen to more than double that sum in 1859. An increase of commerce by more than lOO per cent in the short space of ten years, is a thing almost unprecedented. The causes that have brought about that increase are to be found in California, Australia, the United States, and so forth, but certainly not in the archives of the Tuileries. It appears, thell, that despite the immense increase of French foreign comrnerce within the last ten years - an increase to he traced to revolutions in the markets of the world quite beyond the petty control of the French police - the situation of the mass of the French nation has not improved.

{p. 333} Louis Bonaparte's prescriptions for French industry, if we deduct all that is mere phrascology, or is still looming in the

{p. 334} future, are simply these: Suppression of the duties on wool and cotton, and successive reductions on sugar and coffee. Now, this is all very well, but all the gullibility of English free-traders is required to call such measures free trade. {end}

Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte. In Karl Marx, Surveys from Exile, ed. David Fernbach, Penguin Books in association with New Left Review, Harmondsworth, 1973.


My friend Joseph Weydemeyer, who died before his time, once had the intention of publishing a political weekly in New York, as from 1 January 1852. He invited me to provide a history of the coup d'etat for this paper. Until the middle of February I therefore wrote him weekly articles under the title 'The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte'. In the meantime Weydemeyer's original plan had fallen through. Instead he started a monthly, Die Revolution, in the spring of 1852 and its first number consists of my 'Eighteenth Brumaire'. A few hundred copies of this found their way into Germany at that time, without, however, entering the actual book trade. A German bookseller, who affected extremely radical airs, replied to my offer of the book with a truly virtuous horror at a 'presumption' so 'contrary to the times'.

It will be seen from these facts that the present work arose under the immediate pressure of events, and that its historical material does not extend beyond the month of February (1852). It is now republished, partly because of the demand of the book trade, and partly because my friends in Germany have urgently requested it.

{p. 146} Victor Hugo confines himself to bitter and witty invective against the responsible author of the coup d'etat. With him the event itself appears like a bolt from the blue. He sees in it only a single individual's act of violence. He does not notice that he makes this individual great instead of little by ascribing to him a personal power of initiative which would be without precedent in world history. Proudhon, for his part, seeks to portray the coup as the result of the preceding historical development. But his historical construction of the coup imperceptibly turns into a historical apology for its hero. Thus he falls into the error of our so-called objective historians. I show how, on the contrary, the class struggle in France created circumstances and conditions which allowed a mediocre and grotesque individual to play the hero's role.

{p. 152} It is not sufficient to say, as the French do, that their nation was taken by surprise. A nation and a woman are not forgiven for the unguarded hour in which the first available adventurer is able to violate them. Expressions of that kind do not solve the problem; they merely give it a different formulation. It remains to be explained how a nation of thirty-six millions could be taken by surprise by three swindlers and delivered without resistance into captivity.

Let us recapitulate in their general features the phases the French revolution passed through from 24 February 1848 to December 1851.

Three main periods are unmistakable: the February period; the period of the constitution of the republic or of the Constituent National Assembly, from 4 May 1848 to 28 May 1849; and the period of the constitutional republic or of the Legislative National Assembly, from 28 May 1849 to 2 December 1851.

The first period, from the fall of Louis Philippe on 24 February 1848 to the meeting of the Constituent Assembly on 4 May, the February period proper, can be described as the prologue to the revolution. Its character was officially expressed by the declarn of its own improvised government that it was merely provisional and, like the government, everything that was suggested, attempted, or enunciated in this period proclaimed itself to be merely provisional. Nobody and nothing took the risk of claiming the right to exist and take real action. The dynastic opposition, the republican bourgeoisie, the democratic and republican petty bourgeoisie and the social-democratic working class, i.e. all the elements that had prepared or determined the revolution, provisionally found their place in the February government.

It could not have been otherwise. The original aim of the February days was electoral reform, to widen the circle of the politically privileged within the possessing class itself and to overthrow the exclusive domination of the aristocracy of finance. However, when it came to the actual conflict, when the people mounted the barricades, the National Guard maintained a passive attitude, the army offered no serious resistance, and the monarchy

{p. 153} ran away, the republic appeared to be a matter of course. But every party interpreted it in its own way. The proletariat had secured the republic arms in hand, and now imprinted it with its own hallmark, proclaiming it to be a social republic. In this way the general content of the modern revolution was indicated, but this content stood in the strangest contradiction with everything which could immediately and directly be put into practice in the given circumstances and conditions, with the material available and the level of education attained by the mass of the people. On the other hand, the claims of all the other elements which had contributed to the February revolution were recognized in that they secured the lion's share of the posts in the new government. In no period, therefore, do we find a more variegated mixture of elements, more high-flown phrases, yet more actual uncertainty and awkwardness; more enthusiastic striving for innovation, yet a more fundamental retention of the old routine; a greater appearance of harmony throughout the whole society, yet a more profound alienation between its constituent parts. While the Paris proletariat was still basking in the prospect of the wide perspectives which had opened before it, and indulging in earnest discussions on social problems, the old powers of society re-grouped themselves, assembled, reflected on the situation, and found unexpected support from the mass of the nation, the peasants and the petty bourgeoisie, who all rushed onto the political stage once the barriers of the July monarchy had col-

The second period, from 4 May 1848 to the end of May 1849, was the period of the constitution or foundation of the bourgeois republic. Immediately after the February days, the dynastic opposition had been taken unawares by the republicans, and the republicans by the socialists. But France too had been taken unawares by Paris. The National Assembly which met on 4 May 1848 had emerged from elections held throughout the nation; it therefore represented the nation. It was a living protest against the pretensions of the February days and an attempt to reduce the results of the revolution to the standards of the bourgeoisie. In vain did the Paris proletariat (which had grasped the nature of this National Assembly straightaway) endeavour on 15 May, a few days after the Assembly had met, to deny its existence by force, to dissolve it ... {end}

More of Karl Marx' Eighteenth Brumaire at

Karl Marx, The Franco-Prussian War. In Karl Marx, The First International and After, ed. David Fernbach, Penguin Books in association with New Left Review, Harmondsworth, 1974.


To the Members of the International Working Men's Association in Europe and the United States

No wonder that Louis Bonaparte, who usurped his power by exploiting the war of classes in France, and perpetuated it by periodical wars abroad, should from the first have treated the International as a dangerous foe. On the eve of the plebiscite he ordered a raid on the members of the administrative committees of the International Working Men's Association throughout France, at Paris, Lyons, Rouen, Marseilles, Brest, etc., on the pretext that the International was a secret society dabbling in a complot for his assassination, a pretext soon after exposed in its

{p. 173} full absurdity by his own judges. What was the real crime of the French branches of the International? They told the French people publicly and emphatically that voting the plebiscite was voting despotism at home and war abroad. It has been, in fact, their work that in all the great towns, in all the industrial centres of France, the working class rose like one man to reject the plebiscite. Unfortunately the balance was turned by the heavy ignorance of the rural districts. The stock exchanges, the cabinets, the ruling classes and the press of Europe celebrated the plebiscite as a si nal victory of the French emperor over the French working class; and it was the signal for the assassination, not of an individual, but of nations.

The war plot of July 1870 is but an amended edition of the coup d'etat of December 1851. At first view the thing seemed so absurd that France would not believe in its real good earnest. It rather believed the deputy denouncing the ministerial war talk as a mere stockjobbing trick. When, on 15 July, war was at last officially announced to the Corps Legislatif, the whole opposition refused to vote the preliminary subsidies, even Thiers branded it as 'detestable'; all the independent journals of Paris condemned it, and, wonderful to relate, the provincial press joined in almost unanimously.

Meanwhile, the Paris members of the International had again set to work. In the Reveil of 12 July they published their manifesto 'To the workmen of all nations', from which we extract the following few passages:

{quote} Once more, on the pretext of the European equilibrium, of national honour, the peace of the world is menaced by political ambitions. French, German, Spanish workmen! Let our voices unite in one cry of reproation against war! ... War for a question of preponderance of a dynasty can, in the eyes of workmen, be nothing but a criminal

{p. 174} absurdity. In answer to the warlike proclamations of those who exempt themselves from the impost of blood, and find in public misfortunes a source of fresh speculations, we protest, we who want peace, labour and liberty! ... Brothers of Germany! Our division would only result in the complete triurnph of despotism on both sides of the Rhine ... Workmen of all countries! Whatever may for the present become of our common efforts, we, the members of the International Working Men's Association, who know of no frontiers, we send you as a pledge of indissoluble solidarity the good wishes and the salutations of the workmen of France. {endquote}

This manifesto of our Paris section was followed by numerous similar French addresses ...

Whatever may be the incidents of Louis Bonaparte's war with Prussia, the death knell of the Second Empire has already sounded at Paris. It will end as it began, by a parody. But let us not forget that it is the governments and the ruling classes of Europe who enabled Louis Bonaparte to play during eighteen years the ferocious farce of the restored Empire.

On the German side, the war is a war of defence, but who put Germany to the necessity of defending herself? Who enabled

{p. 175} Louis Bonaparte to wage war upon her? Prussia! It was Bismarck who conspired with that very same Louis Bonaparte forthepurpose of crushing popular opposition at home, and annexing Germany to the Hohenzollern dynasty.

{p. 178} The present war opens a new world-historical epoch, in so far as Germany has shown that, even with the exclusion of German Austria, it is prepared to go its own way independent of foreign influence. ... If the German working class does not play the historic role that has fallen to it, that will be its own fault. This war has shifted the centre

{p. 179} of gravity of the continental workers' movement from France to Germany. This has pinned on the German working class a greater responsibility ...


The war of defence ended, in point of fact, with the surrender of Louis Bonaparte, the Sedan capitulation, and the proclamation of the republic at Paris.

{footnote 14: The Second Empire collapsed on 4 September 1870, after the defeat of Sedan. Two days later the General Council commissioned Marx to draft this Address, which was adopted at a special meeting on 9 September. It was issued as a leaflet on 11 September, and is reproduced here from the parnphlet The General Council of the International Working Mens Association on the war, Truelove, September 1870.}

{end of quotes}

The works of Karl Marx are at

8.7 Alfred Cobban, A History of Modern France Volume 2: 1799-1871, Penguin, Harmondsworth, 1977.

{p. 158} It was difficult to make a coup d'etat {Napoleon's coup in 1852} without breaking some heads as well as an oath. ... Altogether 26,884 arrests were affected throughout France. Of those arrested, 9,000 were transported to Algeria and 239 to Cayenne, 1,500 expelled from France, and 3,000 given forced residence away from their homes. Soon after, a commission of revision freed 3,500 of all those sentenced, and by 1859, when an amnesty was offered to all the remainder except Ledru-Rollin, the nukmber still penalised was only 1,800.

{end of quote}

8.8 Michael Bakunin on Napoleon's support among the peasants

Michael Bakunin, Letters to a Frenchman on the Present Crisis (1870), in Sam Dolgoff, Bakunin On Anarchy, Alfred A. Knopf, New York 1972.

{p. 189} Where the Emperor [Napoleon III] is loved, almost worshipped, by the peasants, one should not arouse antagonism by attacking him. It is necessary to undermine in fact and not in words the authority of the State and the Emperor, by undermining the establishment through which they wield their influence. To the greatest possible extent, the functionaries of the Emperor - the mayors, justices of the peace, priests, rural police, and similar officials, should be discredited. ...

{p. 190} I am not at all disturbed by the seeming Bonapartist sympathies of the French peasants. Such sympathies are merely a superficial manifestation of deep soclalist sentiments, distorted by ignorance and the malevolent propaganda of the exploiters; a rash of measles, which will yield to the determined treatment of revolutionary socialism. The peasants will donate neither their land nor their money nor their lives just to keep Napoleon III on his throne; but they are willing to kill the rich and to take and give their property to the Emperor because they hate the rich in general. They harbor the thoroughgoing and intense socialistic hatred of laboring men against the men of leisure, the "upper crust."


Bakunin vs. Marx: correctness.html.

8.9 Immanuel Wallerstein on Napoleon III

Fernand Braudel Center, Binghamton University

Commentary No. 114, June 1, 2003

The decisive turning-point was the world revolution of 1848, which came as an enormous shock to the "reactionaries." The now elderly Metternich was turned out of office. A "social" revolution occurred in France, seeking to assert the rights of the "workers." And throughout central, eastern, and southern Europe, it was the "springtime of the nations." Of course, as we know, these many revolutions all failed within a short time, and were then met with renewed and very strong repression. But the forces right of center had learned their lesson. They decided to go down the path of Peel, and accept the necessity of "concessions" in order to forestall worse. The following decades saw the rise of what historians call the "enlightened conservatives" - Disraeli in Great Britain, Napoleon III in France, Bismarck in Germany.

From then on, conservatives became merely a somewhat more prudent version of centrist liberalism. In fact, in order to head off the growing strength of "radical" left movements, conservatives were often more ready to use the state to enact changes than the centrist liberals: the extension of the suffrage by Disraeli, the restoration of trade-union rights by Napoleon III, the beginnings of the welfare state by Bismarck. {endquote}

8.10 Karl Marx on Napoleon III and the Jewish Bankers

In two newspaper articles (The Jewish Bankers of Europe and The Russian Loan) Marx depicted Napoleon III as relying on Jewish money-lenders:

The Karl Marx Library Volume 5 On Religion (arranged and edited, with an introd. and new translations, by Saul K. Padover McGraw-Hill Book Company New York 1972):

{p. 219} The Jewish Bankers of Europe*

... Through the Jewish houses, who, shut out from all more honorable branches of business, have acquired in this an inevitable degree of aptitude. There are in Vienna the Rothschilds, and Arnsteins, and Eskeles, and the Jew-Greek house of Seria ...

* From "The Loanmongers of Europe," published in the New York Daily Tribune, November 22, 1855.

{p. 220} ... Let the confidence in the Rothschilds be only once slighdy shaken, and the confidence in the Foulds, the Bischoffsheims, the Stieglitzes, the Arnsteins and Eskeles is gone. The results of despotism and monopolism are precisely similar. Let Louis Napoleon be chopped off, as he may be any moment by some Pianori, and France is in confusion. Let Lionel Rothschild of London, James of Paris stagger under any clever combination of disasters, and the whole loanmongering fabric of Europe will perish.

{p. 221} The Russian Loan*

THE issue of a new Russian loan affords a practical illustration of the system of loanmongenng in Europe, to which we have heretofore called the attention of our readers.

This loan is brought out under the auspices of the house of Stieglitz at St. Petersburg. Stieglitz is to Alexander what Rothschild is to Francis Joseph, what Fould is to Louis Napoleon. The late Czar Nicholas made Stieglitz a Russian baron, as the late Kaiser Franz made old Rothschild an Austrian baron, while Louis Napoleon has made a Cabinet Minister of Fould, with a free ticket to the Tuileries for the females of his family. Thus we find every tyrant backed by a Jew ...

* Published in the New York Daily Tribune, January 4, 1856.

{p. 222} ... the real work is done by the Jews, and can only be done by them, as they monopolize the machinery of the loanmongering mysteries by concentrating their energies upon the barter trade in securities, and the changing of money and negotiating of bills in a great measure arising therefrom. Take Amsterdam, for instance, a city harboring many of the worst descendants of the Jews whom Ferdinand and Isabella drove out of Spain, and who, after lingering awhile in Portugal, were driven thence also, and eventually found a safe place of retreat in Holland. ...

{p. 223} The smartest highwayman in the Abruzzi is not better posted up about the locale of the hard cash in a traveler's valise or pocket than those Jews about any loose capital in the hands of a trader. ...

{p. 224} Thus do these loans, vhich are a curse to the people, a ruin to the holders, and a danger to the governments, become a blessing to the houses of the children of Judah. This Jew organization of loanmongers is as dangerous to the people as the aristocratic organization of landowners. ... Let us not be thought too severe upon these loanmongering gentry. The fact that 1855 years ago Christ drove the Jewish moneychangers out of the temple, and that the moneychangers of our age enlisted on the side of tyranny happen again chiefly to be Jews, is perhaps no more than a historical coincidence. The laonmongering Jews of Europe do only on a larger and more obnoxious scale what many others do on one smaller and less significant. But it is only because the Jews are so strong that it is timely and expedient to expose and stigmatize their organization.

{end} More at leftprot.html.

8.11 Moses Hess on Emperor Napoleon III

Moses Hess, the 'Red Rabbi', converted both Marx and Engels to Communism, and originated the expression "religion is the opium of the people", which was used in the Communist Manifesto (1848).

His essay On the Essence of Money identified Judaism with the cult of money, and asserted the dominant role of Jews in world finance, providing Marx with the information he used in his On the Jewish Ouestion.

But 20 years later, Hess rejected assimilation and returned to Judaism, pronouncing the Jews a race and a nation, and calling for a Jewish socialist state, in his book Rome and Jerusalem (1862).

In 1867 Hess, by now a Zionist, joined the (Communist) International Working Men's Association, siding with Marx in his disputes with Bakunin.

Thus combining Zionism with Communism, Hess has been called "the first Trotskyist": avineri.html.

Moses Hess praised Napoleon III, in the Fifth Letter of his book Rome and Jerusalem: A Study in Jewish Nationalism (tr. Meyer Waxman, Bloch Publishing Company, New York, 1918, 1949):

{p. 61} Only a short time after the February revolution, I went to France and there I learned to know the people which, in the present century, is the foremost champion of social liberty. If this people submits at present to the iron dictatorship of kinghood, it is because the Emperor is true to his revolutionary descent,2 not in word alone, but also in deed. The moment dynastic interests conflict with the aspirations and strivings of the French people, kinghood will disappear from the soil of France. ...

2 The Emperor of France at the time was Napoleon III, the nephew of Napoleon. - Translator.


Note Hess' praise of Napoleon III, which the Dialogues of Joly depict as a despot.

8.12 Summary

As shown by Cobban's figures, and the other articles above, Napoleon III was nowhere comparable to Lenin, Trotsky and the other early Bolsheviks, in despotism or cruelty.

Trotsky calls Stalin a Bonapartist, likening him to Napoleon I and Napoleon III: trotsky.html.

The Kronstadt Massacre showed the true nature of Bolshevism: kronstadt.html.

Trotsky's justification of the Red Terror: worst.html.

The toll of the Bolsheviks:

R.J. Rummel's statistics on Democide (Comparative Holocaust):

Wilson Quartlerly on the Black Book of Communism:

Noam Chomsky (Zmag) against the Black Book of Communism:

The totalitarianism foretold in the Protocols of Zion has much more in common with that launched by the Bolsheviks, than with the regime of Napoleon III.

Although I find Karl Marx' writing persuasive, one must judge Communism by its practice rather than its theory - as Marx himself judged Christianity.

The struggle between Jews and non-Jews ruined the communist governments in the USSR and Eastern Europe; but in Asia and elsewhere this element was lacking (since Jews were lacking), so the regimes there had - and have - more chance of being true to their people. They can't all be judged the same way.

The Ancestry of Political Correctness: correctness.html.

Part 1 of the Protocols of Zion Toolkit is at toolkit.html;

Part 3 of the Protocols of Zion Toolkit deals with the events from 1914 to the early 1920s, which seemed to have been predicted in the Protocols: the World War, the Bolshevik Revolution, the Balfour Declaration inauguraing the state of Israel, and the attempt to make the League of Nations a World Government.

Part 3 is at toolkit3.html.

Write to me at contact.html.