Presentation on theme: "Defending the Revolution"— Presentation transcript:
1 Defending the Revolution Smash the old order to forestall a Counter-Revolution
2 Rivals?After October, 1917 the Bolsheviks were far from secure. They had to consider threats from all sorts of rivalsList the possible rivals for power?
3 Rivals? From the right From the left Internationally The Bourgeoisie? Provisional GovernmentKadetsConservativesMonarchistsThe Army (at the front)From the leftMensheviksSRsLeft SRs?AnarchistsGreensPeasants?InternationallyNon-Russians?Germans?Allies?
4 The Bolsheviks move fast to consolidate their power Bolshevik dominated Second SovietGave land to peasantsWhy?Ended war with GermanyWorker Control DecreeRights of the People of Russia DecreeEstablished SovnarkomBolshevik dominated (some Left SRs invited)
6 The Constituent Assembly Already planned for Nov 12th by Provisional GovernmentHypocritical if Bolsheviks cancel themHowever, they could load the dice…How?
7 The Constituent Assembly Already planned for Nov 12th by Provisional GovernmentHypocritical if Bolsheviks cancel themHowever, they could load the dice…Outlaw freedom of AssemblyClose down hostile PressUse government resources for Bolshevik Campaign
8 Why were the Bolsheviks dismayed by these results? They immediately delayed the sitting of the Constituent Assembly until Jan 5th so that they could formulate a plan
9 The Opening (and Closing) of the Constituent Assembly January 5th It could claim to be the legitimate voice of the will of the peopleLarge group of protestors dispersed by Bolshevik forces before the meetingHostile atmosphereBolsheviks responsible for security?Bolshevik supporters allowed entry to public galleryBooed and hissed speakersRepublic of Soviets VoteIncluding universal labour obligationKnown to be unpopularWould make Constituent AssemblyBolsheviks lose vote 237 – 136Bolsheviks storm out claiming the Constituent Assembly a Bourgeois institutionBolshevik Guards take place of Bolshevik representativesIntimidate speakersLet speakers out, but not back in again.
10 Third Congress of Soviets January 8thBolsheviks and Left SRs held 94% of seats in this loaded institutionToken seats given to other socialistsDeclares Sovnarkom the legitimate governmentPasses all government businessContrast to Constituent AssemblyGives new name to countryRussian Soviet Socialist Republic (RSSR)Changed to USSR in 1924 (United)Now Bolsheviks could claim that they were ruling on behalf of the SovietsSoviets represented the ‘will of the proletariat’
11 Are the Bolsheviks here to stay? It seemed as if the Bolsheviks were more ruthless and determined than most people thought. It seemed as if only a Civil War would remove these fanaticsWhitesRedsGreens
12 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks The BureaucracyIdentified as being Bourgeois or Petty BourgeoisBut they had the expertise and knowledge of how government workedTransport, education, finance, military, etc…White Collar Strike from NovemberLead to creation of ChekaCould not get money out of the banks!Constituent Assembly dissolution rips heart out of strikeBolsheviks are here to stay!
13 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks KadetsOutlawed after November electionMensheviks and SRs happy at the outlawing of a Bourgeois PartyMany fled to fringes to join White Army
14 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks Monarchists/ConservativesWearyFurther disillusioned with execution of Royal Family July 17th 1918Most fled to fringes to fight with Whites
15 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks ArmyOfficer Corps weary of fighting GermansBut not keen on surrendering and losing the warSoldiers content that war is overReturn homeMost officers join WhitesBut a surprising number fight for Reds!Savinkov Rebellion July 191816 day officer led fight in IaroslavalFirst mass executions of 350 officers
16 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks Provisional GovernmentKerensky had burnt all his bridgesHe goes to USADabbles in political intrigue from afarRemnants of government officials fight with Whites
17 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks SocialistsSRsConstituent Assembly elections deny them powerTheir powerful Soviet of Peasants was combined (subsumed) by the Bolshevik dominated Soldiers and Workers SovietGiven some token cabinet positions temporarily
18 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks SocialistsLeft SRsAt first loyal to BolsheviksThey like RevolutionNot rulingAnnoyed over Treaty of Brest LitovskAssassinate German AmbassadorWith Cheka helpRise up and start serious insurrectionJuly 4th – 7thCaught Bolsheviks by total surpriseDzerzhinskii arrestedCould have arrested Lenin himselfLatvians put down revolt
19 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks SocialistsMensheviksDeclared illegal after success in 5th Soviet electionsBolsheviks gave themselves 5 votes each to get a majority in the SovietClaimed that the Mensheviks had cheatedNobody left to protest at their removal
20 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks Nationalist MinoritiesMost content with Bolshevik promise to allow them independenceRemain neutralExcept for LatviansBecome Bolshevik Storm TroopersVery Loyal SDsHappy to fire on RussiansWish to see International Revolution spreadHandsomely rewarded
21 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks PeasantsHappy at Land DecreeConcerned at grain seizuresPerturbed by Bolshevik BrutalityFood Requisition UnitsConfused by weak stance of SRsWill revolt in large numbersBut not in a coordinated mannerDislikes White and RedsA plague on both their houses
23 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks GermansTemporary Armistice whilst Negotiating Treaty of Brest LitovskBolshevik prevaricationKnow that it will be unpopularLenin isolatedGerman Army resumes advance when negotiations stallPetrograd under threatForced Labour BattalionsEnemy Internment without TrialLenin puts his foot downBolsheviks need time to consolidate against Whites
25 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks AlliesAnnoyed at losing Eastern FrontToo busy to join in fullyUSA, Britain, France and Japan send limited soldiers for defensive purposes onlyTo defend stores given to Imperial Russian ArmyJapanese and then USA to defend parts of Trans-Siberian Railway.Give some limited financial aid to WhitesWhen Whites are doing well
26 Who could have stood up to the Bolsheviks CzechsEx-Prisoners of WarAustro-Hungarian ArmyOn way to France along Trans-Siberian RailwayTrotsky accidentally starts off Civil War when he tells Czechs to hand over their armamentsAllies ask them to stay in Russia to see if they can start a new front against GermansVery Highly motivated and well trainedTake control of Imperial Russian Gold ReservesSo very wealthy and can buy a lot of supportSet up a rival government with SRs, Kadets and Constituent Assembly Members in Siberia
27 Showing that the Bolsheviks are Serious: The Red Terror Left SR, Savinkov and Czech insurrectionsFannie Kaplan Assassination attemptAugust 30th Seriously wounded LeninLenin wanted Class War:To remove internal rivalsCounter-Revolutionary forcesTo say that there was no going backWe’re in this together ie Execution of Royal FamilyDecree on September 4thHostage taking allowable – to be executed in reprisal for future attacks on BolsheviksRound the clock executions by ChekaDecree on September 5thClass enemies to be isolated in GulagsWhite Guardists to be executed immediately (no trial)Up to 140,000 victims between 1918 and 1920
28 The One Party State! The Dictatorship of the Proletariat Lenin insisted that the Bolshevik Party run the Russian GovernmentThey control the Soviets who run Russian GovernmentIf anything goes wrong, the Bolsheviks can blame the failure on the Government not the partyProblem of not enough Bolsheviks!Massive increase in bureaucracy,000,000,000Attracted by Party CardGiven better housing, food and immunity from prosecutionOld Timers versus Careerists
29 War Communisim Centrally Planned Economy (Pure Communism) Bukharin manages to outmanoeuvre the more pragmatic Lenin with Socialist Utopian PromisesGovernment MonopoliesPrices set centrallyAll Private Trade BannedFood to be requisitioned and rationed according to statusLand equitably distributedInheritance OutlawedCompulsory LabourNationalisation of banksDefaulted on international debtsStrikes outlawed, no collective bargainingProductivity Collapses, Hyperinflation takes offWhy?
30 War Communisim Reasons for failure Lack of Incentive to workHoarding by PeasantsExplosion in Black EconomyChaos of Civil WarDifficulties and failures blamed on Civil WarHence the name: War CommunismAlthough planned before the War
31 The Russian Civil War1918 – 1920What strengths and weaknesses did each side have?Chapter 6 big red bookUse Spider Diagrams
35 Where was the fighting 3 Fronts Siberian Front Southern Front Czechs startedDisinterested after WW1Kolchak and remains of Constituent AssemblyUneasy alliance between Provisional Government supporters and socialists.Southern FrontDenikin and WrangelCossacks heavy armyTsaritsynMoscow OffensiveGets to within 200 miles of Moscow, October 1919Overstretched, lack of Polish supportRetreat to Crimea (holds on to Crimea until 1920)Petrograd FrontIudenichSmallest but most professional army150,000Reaches outskirts of cityKronstadt sailors help defend cityBritish and US forces landed in Archangel and Murmansk
38 Bolsheviks hold on to power Why did the Reds win?United CommandGeographically centralisedComms hubRush troops to frontsEconomic and population centresRed ArmyHarsh DisciplineTrotskyDivided EnemiesWhites, Greens, Poles, Allies, NationalistsPropagandaPromising utopiaFighting foreign invasion‘whites will confiscate land’Why did the Whites Lose?Geographically isolatedLack of population, industryLack of a clear VisionWhat were they fighting for?Empire? Tsar? Provisional Government? Constitutional Assembly? Etc…Divided aimsEg Cossacks v RussiansWeak international supportBritain, France, Japan, USAIndisciplineReliance on volunteers‘spoils of war’Corruption
39 Selling Communism Communist Party Activist Toiling Masses Design a speech to win over proletariat converts to the Bolsheviks. Include:Economic SituationMilitary Needs during warLonger term objectives of CommunismNeed for control of economyHarsh treatment of BourgeoisieImportance of Grain RequisitioningProblems of workers’ committes and Trade UnionsToiling MassesDesign questions to ask the Bolshevik spokesmen. Explain your personal circumstances Include questions on:Civil WarPost Civil WarFood & Product shortagesFood requisitioningRepresentationNeighboursRepressionEconomic Situation
40 Bolshevik Problems continue even after the Civil War By 1921 the Russian economy and infrastructure was in tatters. How did these help degrade facilities:World War OneCivil WarWar CommunismProblems in the CountrysideBad Harvest in 1920Lack of IncentivesGrain RequisitioningPeasants desperate to hold on to what little food they hadWhy were requisitions needed after the Civil war?Huge Rebellions eg Tambov regionProblems in the CityFood shortagesBread RationingTerrible working conditionsCompulsory labourDestruction of Union PowerBolshevik speakers not welcome
41 ‘Soviets without Communists’ Kronstadt Naval BaseAnarchist sympathiesClose contact with aggrieved Petrograd workersHappy with ridding the old Bourgeois government. Not happy with its replacementMutinied from Bolshevik controlDemanded multi-party democracy, civil rightsFerocious fighting as Red Army forced to reassert control
42 Internal Bolshevik Divisions The Workers’ OppositionAlexandra KollantaiLeft wing factionWanted reinstatement of workers rightsCriticised Trotsky’s plans for Trade UnionsWith external and internal dissent, Lenin realised that some relaxation of communist economic policies essential for the Bolsheviks to survive
43 New Economic PolicyWhat was it? How similar/different was it from War CommunismPages 108- of Red BookHow significant a change did the NEP represent for the Bolsheviks?