There can be no ignoring the effect that World War I had on Russia, with the crippling affects of a major war and the resulting breakdown of infrastructure within the Russian Empire. From 1903 when the Bolsheviks were formed a rising threat had emerged to Tsardom, The Marxist intellectual Vladimir Lenin was emerging as an influential light in the revolutionary movement. His earlier pamphlet entitled ‘What is to be done?’ outlined his need for more organisation, discipline, and leadership within the socialist parties. His idea of having a tight-knit exclusive organisation of professional revolutionaries showed he had the coherent theories to be a real threat to Tsarism. According to Alan Wood, Lenin described the 1905 revolution as a ‘dress rehearsal’.
How far do you agree that Trotsky’s leadership of the red army was responsible for the survival of the Bolshevik government? In October 1917 the Bolshevik’s took control of Russia after staging a revolution. However they faced many dangers/threats while in power from the years 1917-1924 such as a civil war and the economic crisis it caused. The leadership of the red army by Trotsky is a very important reason that the Bolsheviks got into power as his red army implanted the revolution but also to the survival of the Bolsheviks as the red army overcame the Bolsheviks biggest threat of the civil war. However there are other reason which just as or more important than Trotsky’s leadership such as the ideas and sacrifices made by Lenin during the year’s 1917-1924 such as signing the harsh treaty of Brest-Litovsk and enforcing the New Economic Policy or NEP, to create economic sacrifices rather than political ones which allowed the Bolsheviks to remain in power.
Trotsky described war as the ‘locomotive of history’. How far can it be argued that change in Russia in the period 1855-1964 was caused only by involvement in wars? During this period the biggest change that happened was the move from Tsarist autocracy to communist dictatorship as well as the short lived provisional government, which was a form of democracy. Furthermore there were changes to economic policy, which had a great impact on society. The wars that occurred did bring change but were not the only causes of change.
On the other hand, it can be argued that Trotsky’s leadership of the Red Army during the Civil War was just as, or even more important in the Bolsheviks’ seizure of power, as was the image of the Bolsheviks as being patriotic heroes fighting against Tsarist leaders and foreign invaders. Obviously, it was the October Revolution which brought the Bolshevik Party into power, giving them control of Russia. It can therefore be said that, had this not occurred, then it is incredibly unlikely that the Bolsheviks would ever have come into power. The Revolution was, of course, Lenin’s major goal (though in the end it was organised by Trotsky) for his party, and it was through his leadership and staunch dedication to the fall of the Provisional Government that the Bolsheviks eventually seized power in October 1917. Had it not been for Lenin, the Bolsheviks would never have taken power in the first place, as free elections were to be held in November 1917, with the Social Revolutionaries (SRs) being the most popular at the time.
To what extent was the collapse of the Tsarist autocracy by 1917 due to social and economic rather than military factors? The Russian revolution of February 1917 was a momentous event in the course of Russian history. The 1917 Revolution destroyed the Tsarist autocracy and led to the creation of the Soviet Union. The February Revolution was a revolution focused around Petrograd. During the revolution, members of the imperial parliament gained control of the country.The army leadership felt they did not have the means to suppress the revolution and Tsar Nicholas II of Russia.
Both soldiers and civilians blame the defeats in the war and the growing crises on the home front on Tsar. Even the Tsars only army stated it wouldn’t support him if a revolution occurred. Explain the importance/significance of World War 1 to the downfall of the Tsar WWI was a very significant event on the rule of Tsar Nicholas 11. Although it initially bolstered his position, it then became a large factor that contributed to Nicholas’ downfall. The Country was ecstatic when the Tsar made the announcement that Russia was going to fight against Germany in WWI.
How important was Stalin's role in the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany during the Second World War? Stalin's role in the Soviet victory, and indeed the overall Allied victory over Nazi Germany, was certainly significant; he was, after all, both the General Secretary of the Soviet Union and its Supreme War Commander. If one were to take this at face value, then his importance would be without question. However, it can be argued that, especially at the beginning of the war, he played a role just as significant in almost losing the war, mainly due to his tactical mistakes as Supreme Commander and his own Stalinist system and purges leaving his appointed generals with a lack of knowledge of modern warfare and, indeed, a lack of initiative. Even when he grew into his self-appointed role of Supreme Commander and learned from his earlier mistakes, it can be argued that his greatest victories, such as the battles at Kursk and Stalingrad, were less down to him, but rather down to the expertise of his generals, such as Zhukov.
To what extent was Lenin’s victory in the Civil War due to the weakness of his opposition? Lenin and the Bolsheviks’ victory in the Civil War cannot be given one main reason. A combination of the weakness of the whites and the strengths of the reds eventually led to the victory of Lenin and the Bolsheviks. The Bolsheviks were provided with strong leadership, ruthlessness, the Red Army fighting for them and most importantly: the geography of Russia. Whereas, the White army was faced with: a divided leadership, low moral, corruption and brutality within the army and the downside of the vast geography of Russia.
How far do you agree that Trotsky’s leadership of red army was responsible for survival of the Bolshevik government? The Bolsheviks had some control of Russia, when tsar had been abdicated and when the provisional government was in charge for a short period. The Bolsheviks had then taking control of Russia from the Provisional Government, the Bolsheviks' next aim was to maintain their weak hold on the reins of power. But the only way Bolsheviks were to be in full power was to win the civil war in 1918 against the white army. Who were also looking to become in power.
During the First World War, Russia initially sided with the Allies until the Bolshevik Revolution in 1918. It was in this time that leader Vladimir Lenin established authority in Russia. He transformed the country into the communistic Soviet Union. Following the communistic revolution, the Allies looked down on the newly formed Soviet Union, and felt they had conflicting values. Later in WWII, Russia and Germany agreed on a non aggression act.