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POLI 329 Jan. 16.docx

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Political Science
POLI 329
Juliet Johnson

January 16 - Soviets trying to implement a certain ideology under difficult circumstances, October 1917, the Bolsheviks take power after deposing the provisional government - Face a number of challenges, first how to put the theory into practice while holding onto power at all costs - Somehow need to gather power among opposition - 5 key areas for Bolsheviks: - 1) Political System- o Form a council of Commissars o Allow voting for the Constituent Assembly o Still lost, 58% of the vote went to the SR Party, Leftist party that had its roots in the peasantry, Russia was still heavily agricultural, Bolsheviks come in at distant 2 with 25% of the vote o Bolsheviks disband the Constituent Assembly, make enemies with parties that have similar positions o Cheka, the secret police that turns into the KGB - 2) Economic System o Decree On Land, which abolishes landlord property o Early attempt at collectivization, which was primarily voluntarily o Workers will decide how to run affairs in the factories o Nationalize the commanding heights, aka the banks and the financial power - 3) The National Issue o Over 100 different ethnic groups in the Russian Empire o Declaration of the Rights of People of Russia, different groups had right to national self-determination o Lenin and the Bolsheviks promoted national self-determination because they thought it would be short-term since the main cleavages were those of class, not race or ethnicity - 4) Socio-cultural Policies o Military Officers o People’s Courts, a jurisprudence system based more on peers than selected judges o Increasing equality of the sexes, in divorce men and women had same rights to property o Changed the calendar and the alphabet, to the Julian Calendar used in Europe - 5) WWI o This is what really kicked off the civil war o The Bolsheviks had been campaigning on the promise to get Russia out of WWI o Not a clash of nation vs. nation, actually a clash of bourgeois classes against each other fighting for control over resources and weaker nations o First thing they try to do is foment the world revolution o Trotsky, Commissar for Foreign Affairs, institutes a policy called No Peace, No War o Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, gave away huge portions of the Russian Empire, most of Ukraine and Belarus, 1/3 of the population, 90% of the coal o This Treaty really kicks off the civil war, in which the Bolsheviks gain true power and forge an economic system of sorts - The Russian Civil War - Much more complicated than fight between two sides, the Soviet Union practically falls into anarchy - 1) The Bolshevik Red Army, - 2) There are the Tsarist Whites who have several factions in dif
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