• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

To what extent was the continuation of the First World War the main reason for the overthrow of the Provisional government in the October revolution?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

´╗┐History essay: To what extent was the continuation of the first world war the main reason for the overthrow of the provisional government in the October revolution. The overthrow of the provisional government was undoubtedly a direct effect of its own political weakness. While the importance of other factors leading to the revolution , such as the continuation of the first world war, should not be discarded as having no impact; ultimately the provisional Governments downfall was primarily the effect of its own incompetence. The Bolsheviks strength and popularity among the soviets, created a power strong enough to exploit the weakness within the provisional government and preempted the October revolution. The Bolshevik party enjoyed a huge growth throughout 1917, membership rose from 24,000 in February to 340,000 in October, providing the power needed to launch a successful campaign and create a domino effect of increasing support. The result of these high numbers resulted in the Bolsheviks being able to exploit the power vacuum created in October 1917. Miliukov; the Kadet leader at the time, stated, ?They knew where they were going, and they went in the direction which they had chosen.? The Bolsheviks had clear aims and direction, which the other parties lacked. ...read more.

Middle

However while Lenin's leadership was important in meaning the Bolsheviks were in the right position to take over in October; the situation at the time ,crucial in the Bolshevik's rise to power, would not have arose, if not for the continuation of the first world war and the weakness of the provisional government. The continuation of the first world was a critical mistake made by the Provisional Government which caused a snowball effect of events leading to the October revolution. The war was very unpopular among many groups in the Russian society, causing loss of morale as well as economic and social hardship. However the Provisional Government underestimated the negative feelings towards the war effort. They still believed that if they could win the war, they would gain the support of the Russian people. Moreover the Government wanted to honor its international obligations with the Allied countries-- Britain and France; If Russia had backed out of the war it would no longer have received the supplies and war credits being sent from the western allies. Tsardom had left the country on the verge of bankruptcy, meaning no Government could have kept control without the large injections of capital from abroad. ...read more.

Conclusion

As their name stated, they were 'provisional'. It was not an elected body, consequently it lacked legitimate authority. Therefore it did not have a constitutional claim to throne and it would be judged by the people on how it dealt with the country's problems; which it had failed to do in the time it was in power. So when revolution broke out people did not run to their aid. However, had they held on to control until the planned November elections, then it would have legitimized the provisional government and the future of the Provisional Government may have turned out completely different. The final failure made by the Provisional Government was their lack of even trying to defend their authority. Instead of putting up a fight they accepted defeat and handed over control with barely a fuss. In conclusion, although the continuation of the war was a significant factor in the cause of the October revolution, it was in no way the main reason. In fact the continuation of the war is an example of how the Provisional Government was not competent or strong enough to rule Russia effectively. The Government failed to deal with the outstanding issues in the country and as a consequence lost support from their public and paved the way for the Bolsheviks and Lenin to take control. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 essays

  1. How far was the First World War the main cause of the fall of ...

    of the Tsar, it is obvious to understand why the people of Russia called for abdication in February 1917, because of the amount of discontent that was present over the country. Both describe the impatience that was growing against the Tsarist regime, the effects of the latter, the Tsar's personality,

  2. How important was Lenin to the success of the October 1917 Revolution?

    He managed to lead the Reds to victory by uniting them in their cause and being a good leader. An example of this leadership would be the introduction of war communism, which ensured the army got enough food and almost eliminated money from the society as inflation was allowed to get so high that money became almost valueless.

  1. 'In the context of the period 1715-1815 to what extent were economic factors the ...

    Only the violent Jacobins taking power eventually led to its abolition. Though Burke conceded the presence of Enlightenment ideology as a factor in the minds of the revolutionaries, he doubted its importance as the determining factor in the outcome of French Revolution.

  2. How far was the Russian Provisional Government responsible for its downfall?

    Lenin soon proves to be a strong opponent, and due to Lenin's influence the Provisional Government was disposed on October the 25th. The Provisional Government's choice to allow the political exiles back into Russia did fundamentally bring about their own downfall, because they allowed their own opposition back into their country.

  1. To What Extent did Commandos contribute to final victory in World War Two

    they found the boats moored about 400 metres off the shore, and they were forced to swim to the boats. About half of the force was left behind because they could not swim and they were captured. Winston Churchill was furious because it humiliated Britain and had "failed to kill more Germans".

  2. Compare and Contrast the February and October Revolutions in Russia.

    Rasputin made these predictions before the tzar made his decision to enter the World War, so perhaps if Nicholas II would have listened to Rasputin, and believed in his paranormal skills, Russia would have been spared of the terrors of war.

  1. 'Stalin's leadership was the most significant reason for Soviet victory over Germany in the ...

    He was also very good in planning offensives, such as Operation Uranus. There was also Molotov; who was the foreign minister from 1941 and the leader of the GKO, so a key member. Molotov rose to the occasion as he took control during Stalin?s breakdown and he also made the first radio speech.

  2. Assess the view that the failures of the provisional government were the main factors ...

    allowed the Bolsheviks more influence and led to militia factions of Bolshevik support. Whilst the Bolsheviks support grew according to Acton, the SR?s support base was sticking by them. The SR?s were well organised at a local level amongst the peasants, this meant they were very active and successful in local direct action, which gained them a considerable local following.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work