Russia - The New Economic Policy

White Forces had lost the civil war. lenin had to try and resolve the economic issues in Russia ar this time.

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The Economic Situation in Russia

  • Russian economy was in meltdown
  • industrial production was pre-first world war levels
  • war Communism's policy of taking grain lead to peasant uprisings
  • The Tambov uprising - So serious, large forces of red Army had to be diverted to the province to restore order
  • First signs of major famines were appearing
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Growing Opposition

  • Developments caused unease among communist party members
  • concerned about increasing central control of lenin's govt
  • Trotsky's 'Solution' - to extend compulsory service beyond the Red Army to include a civilian work force
  • By the End of 1920  mensheviks began increasing support in Local Soviets
  • The Development of the Worker's Opposition movement
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The Kronstadt Rebelion

  • When Lenin took over his most faithful supporters were the naval base at Kronstadt.
  • These people had helped with the takeover of 25 October 1917 and the Civil war
  • Became disillusioned with Lenin's rule
  • These men were conscripted Ukrainians and were not happy with the situation
  • They demanded an end to the special position of the communist party, relaxation of economic controls, and the Restoration of freedom of speech
  • Lead to an Open rebellion of Lenin's regime
  • TrotskyPut down this rebellion by attacking their naval base
  • Rebels who were not killed were put in Gulags - forced labour camps
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The Tenth Party Congress, March 1921

  • It was a significant event
  • Lenin announced the end to war communism - Was only a Temporary measure bought on by the needs of Civil War
  • This was to be replaced by a 'New Economic Policy'
  • Taking of foodstuffs was abandoned
  • Peasants were now able to sell it on the open market
  • Private trading was now allowed
  • This lead to a New class called the 'Nepmen'
  • A year after the NEP was introduced, 3/4 of all trade was conducted by this group
  • In 1922new currency was introduced which helped bring an end to inflation
  • Lenin said that it was a 'tactical retreat' in order to preserve Communism.And he was giving the Russian economy 'Breathing space'
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'Democratic Centralism' and the ban on internal fa

  • To many Communists the NEP was a betrayal of ideas
  • Lenin was aware that this could split the party
  • to prevent high levels of disagreement, Lenin put a ban on Factions within the Communist Party 
  • This meant that under Lenin's leadership, independent groups were no longer allowed to be made
  • This was supplemented by 'Democratic Centralism'. This meant that any decisions made by Leninor the politburo would be binding on all the other communists.   
  • There was a tightening of Political control and a loosening of economic control
  • This dictatorship saw more power and absolute than any other government
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The impact of the NEP on Russiakn economy

The NEP had an immediate Positive effect

  • Markets appeared in Russian towns
  • food shortages disappeared
  • Famine of 1921 came to an end
  • 85% of firms were back in private ownership
  • Peasants began to cultivate more land - area of cultivation rising by half between 1921 and 1927
  • Coal and Textile production Doubled over the same period  

Negative effects

  • The 'Scissor crisis' - the gap between agricultural and industrial prices
  • were accused by communists for encouraging greed, independence and self interest 
  • after Lenin's death in 1924 the debate over the NEP became a serious debate. 
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