Was The Nature And Style Of The Leadership In The Critical Period Of The Russian Revolution Consistent With The Ideals Of The Revolution?

831 words - 3 pages

The leadership of the 1917 Russian Revolution greatly impacted the fate of the country, but the nature and style of the leadership meant that the revolution consistent with the Marxist model that it was supposedly based on. The Bolshevik Party manipulated the revolution to their individual goals, and in so doing the party gained control of the country and eventually bought it under dictatorial leadership.

The revolution of 1917 was impacted by many factors of Russian society, all together creating the unstable political environment which harboured the revolution. The collapse of the army's loyalty towards the Tsar meant that the Tsar was unprotected, and this made it easier for the Bolshevik party to force the Tsar's abdication. The economic and political impact of the War also made it easier for the Bolshevik party to convince the people that the Tsarist system of Government was not working.

The Bolsheviks made sure that the people of Russia knew an established difference between the Bolshevik party and the 'state', meaning the government drawn from the All Russian Congress of Soviets. The Congress consisted of the Bolsheviks and the Left Wing Soviets; the moderates, who believed change would come in time, had left the Congress in protest of the Bolshevik's coup. The Bolsheviks directed criticism of the running of the country to the 'state', according to David Thomas and Mark McAndrew, to direct the people's attention more and more to the party, as Russia came more and more under the Bolshevik's control. They maintained a façade of Soviet power, while all the while the Bolsheviks were slowly achieving supremacy. The Bolsheviks did not have the numbers to take power initially, consisting supported by 25 000 of Russia's 150 000 000 people.

Lenin issued three key decrees after the 'Bolshevik coup' that came into effect almost immediately, having a large impact on the attitudes of the Russian people. The first was the Peace decree; that would end the war with Germany without loss of land or payment of indemnities. Secondly, there was the Land Decree, which confiscated private land, handing it over to the power of the peasants, and finally the decree that stated the organisation of the new government, establishing the Bolshevik's power in Russia. The speed at which these decrees appeared in Russia indicates Lenin's critique of the Marxist model of society, to let change take its own time, but rather to allow the Bolsheviks to gain complete control of the country quickly. The 'state' also passed many other decrees, impacting the...

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