Trotsky Essay

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Trotsky: Background: * Born in 1879 into a relatively well-off Jewish family of independent farmers. * He joined a revolutionary group but was soon exiled to Siberia. * In 1092 he joined Lenin and other Marxists in London Revolutionary record: * He was a leading figure in the short-lived St Petersburg Soviet of November 1905 which organised a general strike amongst the st Petersburg workers. * In 1917- his reputation won support for the communists during the crucial period in which the October revolution was planned. * He masterminded the communist seizure of power and was subsequently responsible for consolidating communist rule, through his leadership and restructuring of the Red Army during the Civil War of 1918-1921. Relationship with Lenin: * In 1903 he sided with the Mensheviks, rejecting Lenin’s belief in a disciplined, secretive, professional political party. * When he returned to Russia in the summer of 1917, he joined the communists and was able to work closely with Lenin. * Lenin and Trotsky also saw eye-to-eye over the controversial issue of restoring discipline to the Red Army. * Trotsky acted as Lenin’s principal lieutenant and despite occasional disagreements, Lenin was happy to proclaim that there was ‘no better communist’ * Lenin singled Trotsky out as ‘the most able man in the present central committee’ in his testament. Appeal within the party: * Trotsky’s revolutionary heroism in 1905, 1917 and during the Civil War, coupled with his stirring speeches, won him the support of many young Communists and students as well as the loyalty of the Red Army. * Most urban of the party leadership. In a country that was predominantly rural and was increasingly proud of its national identity this alienated Trotsky from many within the party. * Many in the party resented the way in which

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