How did the Prov Govt try to solve Russia problems and why did they fail?-

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Why was the Provisional Government unable to deal successfully with the problems it faced in 1917? (2002). How did the Prov Govt try to solve Russia problems and why did they fail?- - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


  • Why was the Provisional Government unable to deal successfully with the problems it faced in 1917? (2002)Introduction- Post February- two rival bodies in Petrograd, Provisional Government and Petrograd SovietSoviet had all real power in cities- controlled transport, communications, food supplies, factories, power stationsProv Govt had authority- Given financial help and support from Allied governments.What problems did the Prov Govt face in 1917?- Before August- continuation of war, land redistribution, national minority demands for autonomy, economic troublesAfter August- Liberals moving to right, army disintegrating, food + material shortages, declining influence of moderate socialists in Soviet, no control in countryside, lawlessness in cities, rising support for BolsheviksKornilov Affair- Armed Bolshevik Military Revolutionary Committee, Kerensky lost all support, Menshevik + SRs discredited because of association w/ Kerensky. How did the Prov Govt try to solve Russia problems and why did they fail?- War- Had to continue war to get continued support from Allies. Milyukov wanted offensive war (territorial gains, Constantinople) to hasten victory, ease pressure on govt. Enraged Socialists, but agreed to Summer Offensive. Disastrous attack increased public opposition to war. Linked Mensheviks + SRs to war effort.Why it couldnt deal w/ problem- Forced to continue war by Allies, GB urged attack in East. Failure of summer offensive, propaganda in vain. Military discipline still non-existent after Feb. Led to new coalition govt w/ 5 socialists. Separate peace w/ Germ?Figes- Milyukov saw no reason to give up, secret treaty for Russian takeover of Constantinople. BUT on 27 March P.G brought out war aims, in line w/ Soviet peace calls. Milyukov forced to agree but still told allies Russia would fight on.Acton- Russia lacked leverage to force allies into peace and P.G unwilling to sue for separate peace, saw summer offensive as chance to move unruly soldiers out of Petrograd.Land redistribution- Peasants eager for land, after Feb no one could stop them taking it. Wanted P.G to approve their actions. P.G wanted Const Assem to take charge of land redistribution, wanted landowners to get compensated. Scared soldiers would leave front to grab land.

  • Land redistribution- Peasants eager for land, after Feb no one could stop them taking it. Wanted P.G to approve their actions. P.G wanted Const Assem to take charge of land redistribution, wanted landowners to get compensated. Scared soldiers would leave front to grab land.Why it failed to deal w/ problem- Landowners supported P.G, land to peasants= lose landowner support. Felt they didnt have elected authority for task this big. Chernovs compromise rejected. Land seizures rose, peasants lost faith in P.G and SRs, turned to Bolsheviks.Brovkin- P.G not to blame for land seizures, fault lay w/ Bolsheviks for whipping up peasants.Wade- P.Gs infighting over compensation for landowners meant they couldnt reach agreementNational Minorities- After Feb Finns + Poles pressed for independence, Caucasian territories wanted more autonomyUkraine (near front, good farming land) wanted self governance. Moderate socialists for Ukrainian autonomy, liberals against.Liberals thought would lead to break up of RussiaWhy it failed to deal w/ problem- PG infighting led to people losing faith in PG, Bolsh seen as only alternativeFiges- Resignation of 3 Kadet ministers over Ukraine issue caused political crisis that eventually ended P.G.Economic Problems- Economic woes forced Tsar out, but problems did not go away w/ PG.Factories closed, 100,000 jobs lost, price of manufactured goods up, wages below inflationFood shortages- Grain prices up 100%, bad harvest, PG unable to do anythingWhy it failed to deal w/ problem- Not much could be done while war continued. Had to hope for swift victory. Tried to seize grain off peasants, made them more angry. Bolsh policies seemed to be only alternative-Peace. Bread. LandAfter August- Lvov resigned, Kerensky PM. Seen as last hope. Figes- Kerensky was undisputed leader of people.Many political problems, Right wing Liberals, Bolsh support rising (radicalised workers), Moderate socialists out of touch with peopleSocial problems- Chaos in cities, violence in countryside, soldiers deserting front, prices of goods and foods risingWhat Kerensky did- Wanted to continue war, territorial losses, had to find military leader to restore order, didnt want to violently suppress Bolsh, did nothing w/ economy. Led to Kornilov Affair.Conclusion- When PG came to power faced with very tough issues, would have been very hard for any govt to deal withAlso PG was temporary body, didnt have power to enforce decisions, too much expected in short time?, Russia still in state of anarchy after Feb.However PG made mistakes that led to its downfall- Kadets blocked major decisions, if theyd let decisions through poularity might have been high enough to last out war + Const Assem elections.BUT- Continued aggressive war, blocked Chernovs land compromise, sided w/ factory workers, didnt improve economyBiggest mistake- being implicated in Kornilov affair, after that PG helplessKenez- PG couldnt defend itself from Bolsh

  • How important were the contributions of Lenin and Trotsky in bringing about the October revolution?Introduction April theses, July days, Trotsky becoming president of the Soviet, Lenin's push for seizure of power, Trotskys planning of the revolutionBut other reasons for revolution disillusioned with PG, The War, Land Redistribution, Failure to reform factories, Kornilov, Failure of other socialist parties, Luck??

    Provisional Government Divisions between socialist and liberalsKenez- PG have lost all power and authorityTemporary body Waiting for elections, Decisions to continue war, Summer Offensive, nothing done about economyRabinowitch all other parties lost credibility because of Kerensky, Bolshevik support increased dramaticallyBolsheviks Only opposition PG, oppose war, supported by peasants In tune with workers and soldiers, power to SovietsPonomarev workers in guise of soviets took powerLenin's April theses gave Bolsheviks directionLenin Strong determined leadership, forced key policies on BolsheviksSimple policies appealed to tired Russians Peace, Bread Land. Only party not affiliated to PG, seen as only alternativeAll Power to Soviets appealed to political charged proletariatMade Bolsheviks organised and Disciplined but Lenin plotted to take power for himself??Pipes Lenin and Trotsky slyly took power. Classic coup d'tat Trotsky Leader of Petrograd Soviet, head of Military Revolution Committee, best orator in partyPersuaded Lenin to delay revolution Made it look like Soviets supported BolsheviksService MRC and Petrograd Soviet controlled cities soldiers, workers in red guard armed and committed.Organised Rev- Pipes Putsch organised by Trotsky- surgical strikes. Myth of Bolsh surging to power on wave of popular support. Luck Military and Economic Collapse in the summer played into Bolsheviks hands. Radicalised workers confused between power to Soviet and power to BolsheviksFiges Revolution took place amid social revolution that was centred on Soviet taking powerProvisional Government gave Bolsheviks excuse for action, rose bridges to workers districts in PetrogradConclusion - people wanted soviet power, Bolsheviks identified with this aimActon Popular support, for soviet power forced Kerensky out, explains why Bolsheviks took power so easilyLenin and Trotsky played a key role April theses, planning revolution, MRC, policies appealed to wide range of RussiansBut other reasons for revolution taking place Anger at government, Situation played into Bolshevik hands

  • To what extent can the decline of the Provisional Government be dated from the July days?Introduction July days- uncontrolled rioting in Petrograd against government, encouraged by BolsheviksLenin did not actively lead the uprising, created lack of leadership, July days were not successfulLeading Bolsheviks arrested, Lenin in hiding, looked like Bolsheviks would not recoverSome historians say PG could have held onto power after July days, others believe they were doomed before then.2 Main ViewpointsBolsh seizure of power was inevitable before July Days- were only opposition to mod. socialists + Libs, true aspirations of workers and soldiers. The PG was already doomed.The July Days could have been turning point. Bolsh should have been crushed. But PGs mistakes after July were the main reason for their downfall.The PG were finished before JulyWar- Soldiers + maj of pop against war. Summer Offensive. Caused political crisis (resignation of Milyukov)- Bolsh called for peaceLand- Peasants angry over govts indecision over land redistribution, Bolsh called for landCities- People feeling pinch of economic hardship. No improvement since Feb. Job losses, food shortages- Bolsh called for bread.BUT- people still willing to put up with PG?, July Moscow elections, Bolsh only 4th largest party, mod socialists + libs still in controlJuly Days- Bolsh focus for revolutionary activities. End war, help workers, social reform, prioritising food suppliesRioting in Petrograd, vented frustration at govt. Capital defenceless (shows people not prepared to come out in defence of PG)Encouraged by low level Bolshies, BUT Lenin decide to sit back and see what would happenWithout clear purpose, rising lost momentum.After JulyProblems still getting worse- war continued, economy ruined, no law, anarchy in streets, no military disciplineMain event- Kornilov Affair, Kornilov sent loyal troops into Petrograd, tried to overthrow PGBolsh came to aid of Kerensky, Red guard supplied w/ weapons, MRC set up- Kornilov failed, soldiers persuaded to give upConsequences- Kerensky lost all support, Mensh + SRs discredited for association w/ Kerensky, Masses distrusted liberals, Soldier


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