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Lenin's leadership was the main reason why the Bolsheviks were able to seize power in October 1917. Discuss this view (50)

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Introduction

´╗┐Danial Alam ?Lenin?s Leadership was the main reason for the success of the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917? How far do you agree? The Bolsheviks, under the leadership of Vladimir Lenin managed to overturn the Provisional Government making the October Revolution the second of the year. The strengths of the Bolshevik party, including figures like Leon Trotsky as well the weaknesses of Kerensky were both important factors that led to the Bolshevik Revolution. Lenin?s role in the revolution was vital; however, Lenin would have been unable to seize power in October if it were not for the most crucial factor that caused the Revolution which was the failures of the Provisional Government. Lenin?s charisma, his orating skills and his determination to take power was a key component to the success of the Bolshevik revolution. Lenin boosted the Bolshevik popularity and reached out to the peasants by means of the April Theses, where he spoke of ?Peace, bread and land?. Lenin?s April Theses reached out to the Russian people and separated the Bolsheviks from the Provisional Government and the socialist parties that chose to cooperate with Kerensky?s government. ...read more.

Middle

Trotsky managed to convince Lenin to wait until the All-Russian Congress of Soviets before the revolution as when the other parties stormed out the Bolsheviks had a majority; allowing to claim power in the name of the Soviet, the true demands of the people of Russia. As well as this, Trotsky?s planning and the formation of the Military Revolutionary Committee gave the Bolsheviks the means to strike and seize the Winter Palace. Although important, the successes of the Bolsheviks were mainly due to the failures of the Provisional Government and other socialist parties; the Red Guard could not have been armed if it not for the failure of Kerensky in the Kornilov affair. Therefore, the revolution was not solely the success of the Bolsheviks, but they were willing to take action once the failures of the Government and the socialist parties had put them in a position to do so. Kerensky?s poor decisions played into the Bolsheviks hands and strengthened the putting them in a position to act against the Provisional Government in October. ...read more.

Conclusion

The Provisional Government?s decision to continue the war was detrimental to its failure. It crippled the Russian economy, soldiers no longer wanted to fight the War as casualties were in the millions and the debacle of the Milukov telegram that contradicted the statement that Russia would only fight a defensive war further damaged the integrity of the Provisional Government and the socialist parties that supported the Provisional Government and left the Bolsheviks as the only party opposed to the War. Because of these actions the Provisional Government had few supporters by October 1917 and its mistakes gave the Bolsheviks the opportunity to strike in October. Although Lenin played a key role in forcing through the October Revolution, it is evident that the main reason why the October Revolution occurred was not the successes of the Bolsheviks and Lenin but that the failures of the Provisional Government and Kerensky gave the Bolsheviks the opportunity and ability to start a revolution as by October the Provisional Government was loathed and the socialist parties were not unified like the Bolsheviks were, this left the Bolsheviks in the position to seize power which Lenin and the Bolsheviks took advantage of in October 1917. ...read more.

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