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Soviet Russia After the monarchy The following is a general overview of the history of Russia during the period of Soviet domination. The February Revolution of was spontaneous, leaderless, and fueled by deep resentment over the economic and social conditions that had prevailed in imperial Russia under Tsar Nicholas.
The country, having been sucked into World War Ifound the strains of fighting a modern war with a premodern political and economic system intolerable. The tsar was well-meaning but fell short as a war leader and was unable to cope with the burdens of being head of state.
His wife, Alexandrameddled in government and, while encouraging her husband to be a strong tsar, sought the advice of Rasputin on matters of state. The strain of the war, complicated by the intrigues and machinations within the royal house, caused a great gulf to develop between the monarchy and educated society and between the tsar and the rest of the population.
Russian RevolutionA protest during the Russian Revolution. The key factor had been the defection of the military. Without this instrument of coercion, the tsar could not survive. Most Russians rejoiced, but a political vacuum had been created that needed immediate attention.
The Provisional Government that had been formed was to remain in office until a democratic parliament, the Constituent Assemblywas convened in January The new government was bourgeois, or middle-class, representing a tiny segment of the population.
However, the sovietswhich were proliferating rapidly, did not contest the right of the bourgeoisie to rule. As Bolshevik domination grew in PetrogradMoscowand other major cities, the soviets accepted the idea that the revolution that would give them power would take place in two stages: How long this transition period would last was a debatable point.
The Mensheviksthe moderate socialists, held that Russia had to pass through its capitalist phase before the socialist one could appear. The Bolsheviks, the radical socialists, wanted the transition period to be short. Their firebrand leader, Leninsensed that power could be seized rather easily.
The government was weak, and it could not rely on the army. With its large complement of peasants and workers in uniform, it was this group that formed the natural constituency of the socialists.
Like the Mensheviks, the Socialist Revolutionaries, the main agrarian party, did not advocate a rush to power. More than 80 percent of the population lived in the countryside, a fact that made the Socialist Revolutionaries certain to be the leading party when the Constituent Assembly was elected.
The Provisional Government was undone by war, economic collapse, and its own incompetence. Being a temporary administration, it postponed all hard decisions—what should be done about land seizures by the peasants, for example—for the Constituent Assembly. A fatal mistake by the government was its continued prosecution of the war.
Middle-class politicians believed wrongly that one of the reasons for the February Revolution was popular anger at the incompetence of the conduct of the war. Disgruntled peasant-soldiers wanted to quit the army. Industrial decline and rising inflation radicalized workers and cost the Provisional Government the needed support of the professional middle classes.
The government seemingly spoke for the country, but in reality it represented only the middle class; the soviets represented the workers and peasants. Moderate socialists—Mensheviks and Socialist Revolutionaries—dominated the Petrograd and Moscow soviets after February, but the radical Bolsheviks began to win local elections and by September had a majority in the Petrograd Soviet.
The October November Revolution One of the turning points in the struggle for power was the attempt by Gen. Lavr Kornilovwho had been appointed commander in chief, to take control of Petrograd in August and wipe out the soviet.
Aleksandr Kerenskythe prime ministerhad been negotiating with Kornilov but then turned away and labeled Kornilov a traitor, perceiving his attack as a possible attempt to overthrow the government.
Kerensky agreed to the arming of the Petrograd soviet, but after the failed coup the weapons were retained. The Bolsheviks could now consider staging an armed uprising. Had the Constituent Assembly been called during the summer, it could have undercut Lenin and his close colleague Leon Trotsky.Russian History - Consolidation of Democracy in Post-Soviet Russia Introduction The fall of the Communist regime in the SovietUnion was more than.
Essay Introduction The fall of the Communist regime in the Soviet Union was more than a political event. The powerful interaction and fusion between politics and economics that characterized the state socialist system created a situation that was unique for the successor states of the Soviet Union.
The penetration of the Communist regime into every facet of life left the Russian people with. The history of Russia from to the present began with the dissolution of the Soviet Union (USSR) on 26 December and the establishment of the Russian Federation.
The Russian Federation (RSFSR) was the largest republic within the USSR, but until it had no significant independence.
Russian History – Consolidation of Democracy in Post-Soviet Russia This motley crew testifies to the bizarre landscape that makes up Russian politics. Yet it is that bizarre political landscape that Yeltsin appears to be most comfortable.
Post-Soviet Russia The Yeltsin presidency (–99) The U.S.S.R. legally ceased to exist on December 31, The new state, called the Russian Federation, set off on the road to democracy and a market economy without any clear conception of how to complete .
As Hillary Appel remarks, “the rejection of the communist past in favor of a Western liberal regime has often been interpreted in post-Soviet Russia as a repudiation of Russia’s past and national character,” and as even demeaning to aspects of one’s own personal history (Appel, , , ).