As an orator, Lenin did not carry the crowd with him; he did not set a crowd on fire, or whip it up into a frenzy. He was not like Kerensky*, who could make a crowd fall in love with him and shed tears of ecstasy; I myself witnessed such tears in the eyes of soldiers and workers as they showered Kerensky’s car with flowers on Marinsky Square. Lenin simply battered away with a blunt instrument at the darkest corners of people’s souls, where greed, spite and cruelty lay hidden. He would batter away and get the answer he wanted:
“Yes, we’ll loot and pillage- and murder too!”
*Prime Minister of Russia immediately before the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917.
Teffi Rasputin and other ironies p106