Outline The Main Features Of Trotsky's Public Life Period 1917 To 1940

1508 words - 6 pages

Leon Davidovich Trotsky, a member of the Bolshevik party in August 1917 turned out to become one of the most important members of the party playing many vitals roles. He was "one of the most brilliant members of the party" during the first 10 years. Through his brilliant organisational skills, very clearly evident in the October Revolution, he became the People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs. Trotsky led the Bolshevik military revolutionary committee during the Bolshevik cop of October 1917. Trotsky was responsible for the victories of the Red Army during the Civil War, and after that he was an important spokesman for the left wing party regarding the modernisation debates. Trotsky's public life began to decline with the death of Lenin, where he was removed from all areas of power and sent away from the country. His influence was limited however; he still used his mighty pen to fight.Trotsky was instrumental in transforming and moulding the Soviets. In September Trotsky became the chairman of the Petrograd Soviets and he began to direct the transformation of the Soviet into an adjunct of the party, bypassing the Menshevik-SR Ispolkom and non-Bolshevik soviets to form a new Bolshevik control structure. The Bolsheviks used their power in the Petrograd Soviet to set-up a 2nd All-Russian Congress of Soviets on October 20 (agreed September 26), despite only eight of 169 soldiers' or workers' soviets expressing support. With elections to the Constituent Assembly looming the Bolsheviks had to use their power quickly to discredit the elections. The Ispolkom denounced the Congress and the steps the Bolsheviks were taking to create its delegates. Suddenly and without reason, on October 17, the Ispolkom Bureau approved the Congress.The Second Congress of Soviets opened that evening in the Assembly Hall in Smolnyi, on October the 26th. The six hundred or so delegates chose a Presidium of three Mensheviks and twenty-one Bolsheviks and Left SRs. In the evening session of October 26 the Congress approved the Decree on Peace, the Decree on Land and the formation of a new government under Lenin - the Council of People's Commissars (Sovnarkom) - until the meeting of the Constituent Assembly. The Petrograd Soviet Ispolkom was dismissed and replaced by a new group of 101 members (62 Bolsheviks) under Lev Borisovich Kamenev. The Sovnarkom was accountable to the Ispolkom in theory, but the organisation was in every aspect powerless.Trotsky's was a key in the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, as the People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs. In the same month as the Bolshevik coup, Trotsky broadcast an invitation to all belligerent nations for armistice. Germany accepted, and negotiations began in February the next year at Brest-Litovsk. Trotsky led the delegation to Brest-Litovsk, and his first act was to ban the social graciousness of the proceedings. He wanted to eliminate once and for all the old tradition that war is a gentlemen's game, and that even in defeat a gentlemen...

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