How Far Were Divisions Among Its Opponents Responsible for the Survival of Tsarist Rule in the Years 1881-1905? (30 Marks)

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Divisions of opposing groups of the Tsar were important to the survival of Tsarist Russia. However, other factors such the belief of the divine right, the army and the Okhrana were also effective in keeping the Tsar in a state of power. Overall, a mixture of propaganda from the Tsarist regime and the rivalry between the political groups were responsible for the survival of Tsarist rule. Firstly, the opposition groups of the Tsar were known as the Social Revolutionaries (Populists) , the Liberals and the Social Democrats, which had been formed from the Marxists. Each group had its own ideas on what was needed for Russia and each group wanted change, however, there were many problems within the groups and none of them were willing to work with each other; mostly due to the differences in their policies and how they carried them out. The Social Revolutionaries, who were mainly concentrated on establishing a democratic government, used violent tactics such as terrorism and assassinations, the most famous being the assassination of Tsar Alexander II. However, the Liberals, who also wanted to establish some sort of democracy did not agree on using violent tactics, they preferred to discuss things in meetings and banqueting campaigns. The Liberals were the most moderate of the opposition groups and wanted to keep the Tsar, but remove autocracy and have his current power shared between a democratic government. The Social Democrats, like the other two groups, also wanted to establish some sort of democracy; however, once again, they did not agree on using violence, they preferred to use propaganda campaigns, as did the Social Revolutionaries and Liberals, but not violence. These divisions meant that each opposition group’s strength alone was not enough to achieve their own specific goals and even though the groups did have some tactics such as propaganda in common, it was
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