Key Issue 3

  • Created by: Amy
  • Created on: 07-11-13 15:58

Impact of World War One

  • Defeats and losses
    • 1.6 killed, 3.9 wounded, 2.4 captured (millon)
    • lack of equipment (fought barefoot)
    • 1 in 3 conscripted 
  • Economicak dislocation and inflation
    • 1914 - 4million roubles guv spending to 1917 - 30million
    • wadges x2 food and fule x4
    • industry for war increased, everthing eles decreased 
  • Food shortages and transport
    • peasants didnt want to sell there stuff due to inflation
    • army had priority over food and transport
    • hunger led to famin - towns and cities got 1/3 of their requirments 
  • Tsar's Leadership
    • idecisive about war, failed co-ordination giving other coutries contradictory signs 
    • took over direct command of the army in 1915 - something went wrong = his fault 
    • poor leader who gave no inspiration
  • Rasputin
    • helped alexei won devotion of alexandria (hated - german)
    • both took over russin givernment while tsar was away, disliked by nobles
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Criticism of the Duma and Feb Rev

Duma: Tsar had total support from them in Aug 1914, shown by the fact that they stepped down, year leater demanded to return, told tsar to replace cabinant - refused. Progressive Bloc presuaded the tsar to make conssesions, again refused so the bloc became focal point of opposition.

Feb Rev 

  • prolitariat unhappy due to no food and closure of trade unions (outcry of deprivation)
  • 23rd - international womans day
  • Tsar 400 miles away - tried to oreder a martial law, couldn't be printed let alone enforced
  • Tsar orderd duma to dissolve - 12 disobeying members set up the provisional committee 
  • petrograd soviet of soldiers, sailors and workers deputies 1st meeting (Mensheviks)
  • Remaining ministers in the tsars cabinet left the tsar on his own (advised to abdicate)
  • Tsar tried to come back to petrograd but train was diverted by troops to prkov 100 miles away - here he took the advise and abdicated nominating his brother yet he refused left only the provisional committee (which canged its name to the provisional government) to govern
  • lack of direction and unwillingness of generals and police to save old regimes, bolsheviks playled no part and was maily in petrograd, consequence of war  
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Provisional government and Petrograd Soviet

  • Provisional Government (left wing)
    • responsible for governing russia until the election to a new constituent assembly in nov
    • prince Lvou - prime minister
    • kadets were the dominant party
    • had 8 pronciples - including freedom of speech and right to strike, political prisoners released 
    • old duma in new form - not elected so had a lack of legit authority
    • Had no control over army (due to soviet order no1) meaning they had no real power
    • It lacked authority, didnt answer to any of russias problems at the time including the question of land, inflation (leading to urban discontnent) and the continuation of the war - thought it best to leave it until the constituent assembly
  • DUEL AUTHORITY (unofficial partnership) - Petrograd Soviet (right wing)
    • was a threat to the PG authority, formed on the 27th feb by mensheviks 
    • Factories elected a resprsentative who would attend the soviet meetings, chairman was a leading menshevik Chkeide, Trotsky in september
    • soviet order no. 1 - soldiers would only obey orders of the PG of the soviet agreed Had control of the railway, telegraph station, factories, power supply and soldiers in the petrograd garrison - the real power lay with them
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April Theses and Lenin's Return

  • German guv helped lenin return from exile to russia
  • Made a speece on his arrival to the petrograd train staion on thr 3rd april 1917
  • Speech - condemed bolsheviks who had been willing to cooperate with other parties, the provisional guv and called for its overthrow
  • Following day issued April Theses in which he: spelled out the future of the bolsheviks and insisted that if the bolsheviks were true evolutionaries they must: 
    • abandon all cooperation 
    • work for a true revolution by their own work
    • overthrow the PG
    • transfer power to workers
    • demand that the power be passed to the soviets (saw them as a power basis) 
    • Slogans: 'Peace, Bread and Land' summarisings russias problems that the PG did nothing about (war, hunger and land question) 'All power to the Soviets' 
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July Days

unrest continued for the Industrial workers focusing on the PG

  • July days rising (3-6 July)
  • widespread demonstrations, 
  • was confussed and disordely, 
  • supported by bolsheviks 
  • easily crushed by government troops
  • workers demonstrated under the influence of the april theses chanting the slogans
  • attempet by bolsheviks to show industrial workers that they could provide them with a leader
  • Kerensky (leader of PG) orderd for the bolsheviks to be arrested - including Trotsky and Kamevev (Lenin fled to finland) 
  • Bolshevik papers banned
  • failure of the July days severly hury the reputation of the bolshviks as it showed they wernt dominant, left them on the verge of destruction as a political force
  • kerensky became prime minister and launched a propaganda campaign branding the leaders of the bolsheviks as traitors
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The Korenilov Affair (August 1917)

  • took away the gains the PG had made in the July days and it let the bolsheviks recover from their hummiliation. 
  • Kornilov was an army officer who hated Lenin and the soviets and had not fully accepted the Feb Rev. he made the decision to move troops to petrograd to protect it against advancing german soldiers and growing unrest in the city itself. he believed that before germany could be beaten, enemies within russia eg Lenin had to be eliminated. He warned that russia was on the brink of anarchy. He marched into petrograd in attempt to seize power
  • Kerensky (Prime Minister) condemed Kornilovs advanses and orderd him to surrender his post and placed Petrograd under martial law. Kerensky responded by using the red guards, and because he feared for his leadership he released the bolsheviks from prison and handed them fire arms to help kerensky;s leadership and stop the coup. 
  • The bolsheviks stopped all trains carrying kornilovs army to petrograd and as a result kornilov abandond his advanses and allwed himself to be arrested.
  • once over, the bolsheviks refused to hand back the fire arms, they recived enonrmouse success from this and kerensky was seen as a coward and incapable of doing anything alone, it also discredided the other parites who had so invlovment with him including mensheviks, SRs, kadets and libers
  • This helped the bols into power, they were now in a piowerful popular position and the PG weaker than ever - time was ripe for change!
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October Revolution

Why October? - in mid septemer the bolsheviks had gained a majority in the Petrograd and Moscow soviet with Trotsky the chairmand of the Petrograd Soviet. They wanted to be in power before the all russian congress of soviets meeting on the 25th oct, and they nov elections into the constituent asselmly and they wanted to be in power before then. (also peasant unrest at peek)

  • MRC were the instument of seizing power
  • Lenin returned for exile in Finland - persuaded bolsheviks to use force against the PG 
  • 27th oct central committee agreed armed insurrection was neccessary yet no date was set
  • Kerensky closed bolshevik papers under the impression a dade HAD been set - triggering rising
  • Trotsky orderd rising - he directed the red gurads to seize key instaliation in Petrograd
  • only took 3 days for the city to fall to bolsheviks, there was little fighting 
  • PG had hardly any military resorces to call upon - so when the red guards approtched the PG headquarters (winter palace) they met harldy any resistance
  • Kerensky fled to the US embassy and then on to the USA
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Reasons for the Bolsheviks Success

Trotsky said it was because of: the refusal of the petrograd garrison to side with the PG and the creating of the MRC 

  • Other key reasons:
  • 1) Weakness of the provisional government
    • weak due to duel authority, not dealing with the problems russia faced at the time eg war and the fact that it was not elected ment they had not legitament authority
    • Only meant to be temporary (provisional) so didnt deem it neccissary to solve russias current problems, felt it was the constituent assemblys problems (to be elected in Nov)
    • Kerensky was deemed weak after his dealing with the Korenilov affair
  • 2) Weakness of the non-Bolshevik parties
    • all accepted the feb rev and were prepared to cooperate with the PG willing to wait for the consituent assemble (gave the bolsheviks a powerful propagnda wepon)
    • weak due to their support of the war
    • lack of traditional parties in russia - power to the most ruthless party (bolsheviks)
  • 3) Bolshevik Policies
    • poweful slogans- 'all power to the soviets' appealed to soldiers and workers and 'peace, bread and land' won peasant support (addapted there land policy 
    • Didnt work with PG, opposed the war, organised, had good leaders Lenin and Trotsky
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Role Of Lenin

Lenin was a strong and forceful leader- even in his frequent absence from petrograd (exile) between febuary and october he was dominant in the action. 

He was determined and prepared to work with others such as Trotsky, trusting him. He was also astute in apdapting theorys to suit circumstance alsong with being pragmatic as he was prepared to work with the peasanst who he didnt really like

he fulfiled his plans for revolution which he laid down in his 1902 pamphlet 'what is to be done' in 1902

played little part in the 1905 revolution or the feb rev

changed party police with the April These - to stop coordinating with the PG and becoming outright opposition wanting to take power using the soviet

his policies attracted may by his slogans 'Peace, Bread and Land' and 'All Power to the Soviets' 

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Role Of Trotsky

  • chairman of Petrograd soviet
  • intellectual and arrogant
  • great order and could sway the croud
  • set up and controlled the MRC (Millitary Repersentation Committee)
  • vital role in october 1917 - persuaded lenin to wait until october - announced rev at all-russian congress of soviets
  • forsaw kerensky could be provoked to challenge authority of the MRC
  • reacted to kerensky closing down soviet press and arrest of MRC - planned detailed takeover
  • Organiser
  • One of the three trolka 
  • Organised the red guard and dsciplined it
  • coordinated millitary operations
  • said the revolution would have happend wihout himself but not without lenin
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Causes of the Revolutions

  • February And October Revolution:
    • industrialisation led to harsh living and working conditions for proletariat
    • land hunger of peasants; stolypin's reforms had not had time to take effect
    • Growth of opposition parties and increased literacy amoung peasant and workers
    • discontent of minorities
    • effects of WWI
  • February Revolution
    • Autocracy was an outdated political system unable to cope with challenges facing it
    • Character of the tsar/ Alexandra and Rasputin
    • Aristocracy refused to rally to tsar's aid in February
    • Failure of reforms promised 1905-06
    • Disaffection in the Army
  • October Revolution
    • weakness of the provisional government -not elected and duel authority
    • Petrograd soviet controlled army (soviet order No.1)
    • Only the bolshevik party opposed the war
    • role of lenin - april theses spelt out policy 'peace, read and land' 'all power to the soviets'
    • Trotskys work with the MRC, Red guard and his planning
    • growth of the soviets and bolshevik influence in them
    • Kornilov affair - Kerenskys mistakes and the election due in November (constituent)
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