The workers of the world had to be “liberated” from bourgeois exploitation. As the principle communist nation of the world, Russia had a duty to spread the revolution begun in 1919 to the rest of Europe. The view of many Marxist scholars was that the proletariat had been brainwashed by the rich, and thus were not capable of instigating a workers’ revolution themselves – therefore Communism had to be introduced by force. Stalin realised that the Soviet occupation of Eastern Europe was a rare opportunity for Russia to act as this vanguard. Perhaps less importantly, though still a significant point in the domination of Eastern Europe, was the desire of Stalin to
Past paper questions- Russia in Revolution 1881-1924 From Autocracy to Dictatorship and Stalin’s Russia 1924-53 January 2009 How far were divisions among its opponents responsible for the survival of the Tsarist rule in the years 1881-1905? (30 marks) OR How far was the Provisional Government responsible for its own downfall? (30 marks) How far were economic problems responsible for Stalin’s decision to replace the New Economic Policy in 1928 with the first Five-Year Plan? (30 marks) OR How far was the dramatic development of a war economy responsible for the USSR’s victory in the Second World War? (30 marks) June 2009 How far do you agree that the economy of Tsarist Russia was transformed in the years to 1914?
These include political, ideological and last but not least economic. All above causes combined causing Stalin to introduce these plans, which would revolutionise Russia forever. Political reasons were a main cause for Stalin to initiate the 1st Five Year Plan (1928-1932). Russia was a very lonesome country in terms of politics, unable to defend herself against capitalist countries. Without communist allies Russia needed necessities for modern warfare.
It is also debated that national interests of the individual countries during and post World War 2 created tensions between the nations of US and the USSR, because they each saw the others aims as a threat to their own national safety. Ideological differences were seen to cause tension as Communism and Capitalism and one of these differences was the economic policies of each ideology. A capitalist society such as that in the USA, was seen as ‘divided’ by communists, as their economy was based on private ownership and their was an emphasis on the individual whereas the communists in the USSR had a society based on nationalisation which enables the fair distribution of goods as well as state ownership of companies. This was a cause of tension leading up to the Cold War as the wealthy businessmen of the West, most of which were in high powered governmental or political positions, saw nationalism as a direct threat towards their wealth, power and status, so was an attack on the power structure of US society. As these figures were powerful, they had the potential to influence major decisions within the US government, so it can be said that the origins of the Cold War owed much to economic
His ideological dispute with Trotsky, another major contender to lead Russia was a key factor in his uprising as Trotsky was the leader of the ‘left-wing opposition’. Trotsky was the leader of the red-army and had excellent leadership but was very arrogant and had a lack of judgement. Stalin made sure that he exploited these characteristics of Trotsky and made it aware to the other Bolshevik members. Stalin took advantage of this and started to manoeuvre devious tactics such as giving
It was here that historian Robert Service argued where the course of rapid industrialization and collectivization had been set. Stalin was determined to alter the USSR’s structures and practices and between the years 1928 - 1939, the USSR under Stalin’s rule had been pointed decisively in the direction of an industrial urban society, and thus therefore should one view the characteristic's of Stalin’s totalitarian state in a Utilitarianism paradox? Since one may consider Stalin’s motivation behind rapid industrialization was the need for national survival, and if soviet life improved under Stalin’s repression, then the minorities were the main losers in the modernization of the Soviet Union between 1928 and 1939. Approaches to Stalinism have altered somewhat since the collapse of communism in the Soviet Union, and by the end of the twentieth century the typical ‘top down’ view of history began to be challenged by socialist historians who considered the effects of collectivization and the Great Terror on the mass of society as opposed to the minorities such as the ‘Kulaks’ and the purges of the party and the army. Historian Peter Gattrell is an example of a ‘Stalinist Historian’.
The main point of George Kennan’s (1947) essay was that the Soviet Union “could not enjoy a peaceful coexistence with the capitalist world.” He said, the Soviets were seeking to spread Socialism and considered capitalism its greatest enemy which would not be allowed to influence the people of Russia. In March of 1947, Kennan views influenced President Truman, and were the basis for the presidential proclamation known as the Truman Doctrine. His essay “The Sources of Soviet Conduct,” was the first article written referencing the policy of containment. The essay outlined the answers to five basic questions about the United States international environment and it analyzed the “Soviet Union’s postwar outlook; the background of this outlook; a projection on practical Soviet policy, both officially and unofficially; and deductions from the standpoint of United States foreign policy.” Kennan characterized the Soviet state as believing that it has been harness and girdled by the United States and its allies which is naturally combative and prone to become hostile towards the Russia. Kennan says that the Russian people are ruled by a tyrant and these ideas are not their views but the viewpoint the Communist Party.
Stalin’s desire to initiate collectivisation was motivated by his struggle against Bukharin and the Communist party’s right wing. The radical nature of collectivisation appealed to the left-wingers of the party. It was more appealing than the right wing alternative of importing grain as importing grain would reduce the pace of industrialisation because importing would mean spending the money needed to develop Russia’s industry. This allowed Stalin to appear strong because he showed that Russia’s agricultural difficulties could be transformed through strong leadership, and also asserted that peasants who refused to co-operate with the state agricultural policy were essentially terrorists and enemies of the people. When collectivisation was criticised by some local officials, Stalin published an article called ‘Dizzy with success’ in Pravda, defending the policy by arguing that the target for collectivisation had been met and therefore the programme would be suspended, in order to cover up the carnage that collectivisation had in actual fact caused.
The Cold War was the result of underlying friction between the two superpowers of the day and their respective followers. It is seen by many today to have been the inevitable result of the tensions that had developed before, during and after the Second World War, between the East and the West. It was a conflict of Capitalism and Democracy as represented by the West and, on the other side, Communism as personified by the USSR and its satellite states The Cold War might not have been totally inevitable, but due to the background causes that I will examine and the ideological conflicts the occurrence of the Cold War was almost inevitable. The framework for the ideological conflict of the Cold War was in place by early 1918. When the Bolsheviks seized power in Russia in October 1917, communism came to the fore as an issue in international relations.
How far did the priorities of the three Five-Year Plans change in the year 1929-41? By Seb Monson The Industrialisation of Soviet Russia took form in the way of 3 Five Year Plans (FYP) which aimed for heavy industry throughout Russia to help aid the country in catching up with the ‘advanced countries’ and preparing Russia for war otherwise they would ‘perish’ as said by Lenin on the eve of the October revolution. Great Britian was in fact influential on Stalin as it was seen as a powerful Capitalist state after its Industrial Revolution a century earlier. This helped Stalin gauge what needed to occur, to enable Russia and its Socialist state to become a superpower. Stalin recognised that the industrial revolutions which, had made Western Europe and Northern America so strong, had been based on iron and steel production.