The Soviet State: A Study of Bolshevik Rule

By Bertram W. Maxwell | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XV
THE POLICE (Militsia)

POLICE FUNCTIONS

Bolshevik writers, in discussing the police in the Soviet state, designate it as a class institution officially known as the Workman-Peasant Militsia and Criminal Investigation. The main function of this class organ, it seems, is to guard the revolutionary order and the safety of the toiling masses. Previous to the abolition of the commissariats of interior in the constituent republics, the police administration was attached to these commissariats. In 1930 the old police establishment was reorganized into "The Chief Administration of Workman-Peasant Militsia1 Administration and Criminal Investigation" and placed in close connection with the councils of people's commissars of the R. S. F. S. R., constituent republics, autonomous republics, regional and raion executive committees, and city soviets. This reorganization, according to Bolshevik interpretation, creates a structure which is built from below and will culminate in an efficient centralized organization, that will strengthen discipline in the ranks. At the same time it will improve conditions of the ranks all around. The police in its new organization is to become as strong a rampart of the proletarian dictatorship as the Red Army.2


THE CENTRAL ORGANS

The central organs of the police administration are attached to the council of people's commissars of the respective republics, and are under the direct supervision of a newly created chief administration of police and criminal investigation. The local organs of administration are located in regions, autonomous republics, raions, and cities.3 The chiefs of local police administrations are under immediate jurisdiction of the superior police organs and are responsible to them for the condition and activity

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