Presentation on theme: "Revolution & Civil War in Russia. I.The March Revolution brings an end to Tsarism 1917 In 1914, Russia was slow to industrialize. The Tsar and nobles."— Presentation transcript:
Revolution & Civil War in Russia
I.The March Revolution brings an end to Tsarism 1917 In 1914, Russia was slow to industrialize. The Tsar and nobles controlled the government and economy, which had corruption. The majority of the peasant population was in poverty. Russia suffered devastating losses in WWI. Nicholas II went to the front to take charge of the military, leaving domestic problems to the Tsarina & Rasputin
Tsar Nicholas II
George V Britain & Tsar Nicholas II Russia
Tsarina Alexandra & Alexei
Rasputin (Cartoon version)
March 1917, workers had gone on strike and the military refused to end them. Russia was losing the war and had food & fuel shortages at home. As a result Tsar Nicholas II abdicated. A provisional government was created, but radical socialist groups established soviets, with the Bolsheviks eventually taking charge of Russia.
II.Lenin and the Bolsheviks Vladimir Lenin was brought back to Russia to lead the Bolsheviks in He advocated for Marxist ideas and called for an elite group to lead the revolution and set up a “dictatorship of the proletariat (workers).”
III.The November Revolution Brings the Bolsheviks to Power The provisional government of Russia continued to fight WWI and failed to help peasants and city workers. In November 1917, Lenin’s forces overthrew the provisional government in St. Petersburg. They seized power in other major cities, and made Moscow the capitol
The Bolsheviks ended private ownership of land and distributed it to the peasants. Workers were given control of factories and mines.
IV.Russia Plunges into Civil War After the revolution, Lenin agreed to end the war with Germany. Russia signed the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk; they gave up a large amount of land and population, but needed to end the war to strengthen Russia. With the Bolsheviks in power, a civil war broke out as the “White” army made up of tsarists, Mensheviks, democrats
and others wanted to defeat the Bolsheviks (Reds). The Allies intervened hoping the Whites would be victorious and re-declare war on Germany. The Allied involvement did not help the Whites, but led to Communist distrust of the West.
The Communist/Bolsheviks killed the Tsar and his family so they would not be a rallying symbol for the Whites. The Communist government used the Cheka and the idea of “war communism” to win the civil war, forcing the people to contribute. As the Red Army became stronger, the Whites were ineffective and finally defeated in 1921.
V.Building the Communist Soviet Union Over 20 million people had died in Russia as a result of the civil war- by disease, starvation, or violence. The new Communist government was struggling and the economy was in ruins. In 1922, the Soviet Union (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) was created consisting of Russia and neighboring republics/states.
The Communists created a constitution that, in theory, gave all political power, resources, and means of production to workers and peasants. In reality, the Communists controlled all aspects of the country. The party used its army and secret police to enforce its will. Russia also dominated the other republics in the USSR.
Lenin created the New Economic Policy after his policy of “war communism” failed. It did contain capitalistic aspects. Under the NEP, small business were allowed to open for private profit. Peasants were allowed to keep land and sell their surplus crops. Although the NEP helped the Soviet Union recover economically, Lenin’s plan was to use it temporarily. He planned to revert back to communism once the economy was strong.
In 1924, Vladimir Lenin died as a result of a brain hemorrhage. He had been sick for 2 years from a series of strokes. Lenin had not named a successor; when he died, a power struggle ensued over leadership of the USSR. Leon Trotsky was a military leader of the Bolshevik revolution and civil war. He was an intellectual, following Marxist beliefs, and was a skillful speaker. He wanted a worldwide revolution against capitalism and an end to the NEP.
Joseph Stalin held many high ranking positions in the Communist Party. He was not a scholar, but made strong, shrewd decisions. Stalin wanted to concentrate on building and strengthening socialism at home first. He also wanted to continue the NEP to boost the economy.
As a result of Stalin’s control in important government positions, he was able to influence other Communist Party members and was elected as leader. They also ruled that no one could vary from Party policy as defined by Stalin. Trotsky was excluded from the Communist Party and fled the USSR in In 1940, he was assassinated under Stalin’s orders in Mexico City.