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Why there were two Revolutions in Russia in 1917.

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Introduction

Why there were two Revolutions in Russia in 1917 Problems in Russia in the early nineteenth century were growing, and many of these factors contributed to the revolutions of 1917. In 1904 Russia went to war with Japan over the control of Korea and Manchuria. This was supposed to be a war, which Russia would win easily, and it would increase the popularity of Nicholas the second and stop criticism towards his government. However, Russia suffered a terrible and humiliating defeat to Japan. Following this defeat was unemployment and food shortages in Russia. This caused much upset of the Russian population, and led to a semi-revolution in 1905. In March 1917 the situation in Russia was extremely bad. Workers were desperate for food and political change. 40,000 workers went on strike for higher wages and the people overthrew the Tsar. The Tsarist system was that of complete control. The Tsar had complete control over the country and also over the Orthodox Church. This meant that all the important decisions were made in St Petersburg, and many Russians felt that this was done without consulting the rest of Russia. Nearly 90% of the Russian population were peasants, and nearly all of them poverty stricken. Much farming land was owned by rich landowners, and little was got from the poor peasants. Due to this discontent there were many opposition parties to the Tsarist regime of Nicholas the Second. These parties, if found out were mainly executed or sent into exile. ...read more.

Middle

Then, on March the 7th, a food riot broke out in St. Petersburg. 40,000 workers went on strike for higher wages, and women also joined in due to lack of food. This showed that they wanted improvements in Russia, and were not only rioting against Nicholas the Second, as he had abdicated earlier that year. The Tsar subsequently asked the Army to stop the riots, but instead the army joined in with the rioters. This showed the poor quality of troops Russia had, possibly due to all the good troops being used up fighting the War. This just shows how the First World War aggravated all the problems Russia was facing before the first revolution in Russia in 1917. Peasants were forced to fight in the War, which meant that there was left food being produced. After the first revolution in Russia in 1917 a provisional government was put in place. This was controlled by the Duma, but, as will be explained later, they did not have much control over the country, as they could not rely on the army to help their cause. After the first revolution in Russia in 1917, a provisional government was set up due to the constitutional vacuum. The provisional government was devised from revolutionary Duma members who refused to disband at the Tsars request. It was not an elected body, and therefore did not represent the people of Russia. This provisional government was made up of bankers, lawyers, industrialists, and capitalists. ...read more.

Conclusion

This aggravated the anger towards the provisional government for continuing with the war. Then, the army started to lose its support from the provisional government and started to support the Russian workers. The army was adopting a radical left attitude, similar to that of the Bolshevik party. The Kornilov affair was also a major cause of the downfall of the provisional government. Kornilov was a Russian general pro - Tsarist, but who was supposed to be fighting on the western front for Russia. Instead, he led a group of soldiers to the east to the capital of Russia, to try and overturn the current government and establish himself as the ruler of Russia. This, of course, failed, and he was defeated in Petrograd. Although this may seem insignificant, the Petrograd Soviets manipulated propaganda so that the provisional government was made to seem weak and dishonest. The Red guards were the Bolshevik army, which was small but gave the Bolsheviks a weapon. The unpopularity of the provisional government gave the population the opportunity to revolt. This, of course, led to the second revolution in Russia in 1917. Lenin was essential to the Bolshevik revolution of 1917, but he alone could not have done it. The unique dual power system was a major contributing factor to the weakness and thus unpopularity of the provisional government. The First World War was also a major contributing factor. Due to WW1, Lenin could be sent back to Russia with the help of the Germans. Also, due to WW1 the Germans funded the Bolshevik party. Jack Macfarlane ...read more.

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