The Union of 17 October saw its main task as being to contribute fundamentally
to the rapid establishment of a constitutional monarchy, on the basis of
the manifesto of 17 October, insofar as was possible in our state system,
and to the rapid convocation of the State Duma. It called for unity amongst
those who sincerely wanted the peaceful renewal of Russia and the triumph
of law and order in the country, who rejected both stagnation and revolution
and who recognized the need for the establishment of a strong and authoritative
regime, which, together with the representatives of the people, could bring
peace to the country through constructive legislative work.
. . .The basis of the Union's programme [was]:
- The preservation of the unity and indivisibility of the Russian state,
whilst allowing individual nationalities significant rights in the cultural
- The development and strengthening of the foundations of a constitutional
monarchy with a representative assembly elected on a broad franchise. .
- The guaranteeing of civil rights, and the inviolability of the individual,
his residence, correspondence and property.
- The urgent summoning of the State Duma to put through political reforms
. . . to deal with such matters as
- (a) the peasant question - the peasantry should be granted the same
civil rights as the rest of the population; peasant land-holding should
be extended and regulated
- (b) workers' insurance, a limitation of the working day and the freedom
to form trades unions and to strike
- (c) the development of local self-government . . .
- (d) measures on education
- (e) judicial and administrative reforms
- (f) economic and financial measures to achieve a more rational and
just tax system.
Source: D.N. Shipov, Vospominaniia i dumy o perezhitom.
Moscow, 1918, pp. 404-6.
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