"The Allies must get into relations with the trade societies," said Dr. John Graham Brooks, S.T.B. '75, recently when questioned by a CRIMSON reporter in regard to the co-operative movement as it now exists in Russia. The proposition of the co-operative system in brief, he explained, is to introduce democracy into business, doing away with private profit.
"The movement, which was started about 1865, has grown steadily since 1904, until now there are fully 40,000 cooperative centres throughout the world," said Dr. Brooks. "It has a banking system all its own as well as factories, and today it is the chief organ of distribution in Russia. The whole co-operative movement has nothing at all to do with the Bolsheviki, as is often thought, and its leaders are absolutely anti-Bolshevik. It is a purely economic, non-political organization,--a constructive business proposition,--and was the only factor that kept the Russian army going during the war after the overthrow of the Czar.
"A bank has been founded in England and there is another just starting in New York City Shipments of clothing and machinery are being sent from England in exchange for oils, hair, and other products from Russia. All settlements are being carried out by the co-operative banks in England and Moscow. This step is only the beginning."
Dr. Brooks, in speaking of Mr. Alexander J. Zelenko, who is to address the meeting of the Student Liberal Club this evening, said that he was "a leading educational director of the Russian co-operative movement, a man of cultivation and university traditions." Mr. Zelenko is a man of broad experience and is considered a master of the co-operative system.