HIS 2342 – Wednesday January 23 2013
- The war communism years (1918-1920).
- This is the stage after which the Russian revolution of 1917 has happened. The
communist party is trying to consolidate it’s party into this October revolution.
- The Bolsheviks change their names to the communist party of Russia. They do this to
distinguish themselves from other socialist partie. The communist party unlike European
socialists explains they’re not a bourgeois State. They’re a new “invention” they’re
- They not only change their names to the communist party they also decide to move the
capital city from Saint Petersburg to Moscow. The decision for this was to try and protect
the capital from other powers.
- They movements arrive as they’re doing negotiations with the German’s in March 1918.
- At this point when they write the treaty Russia loses Ukraine, Baltic Provinces (Latvia,
Lithuania and Poland) and Finland.As a result Russia lost 1/3 of it’s population in 1918 to
this treaty 80% of it’s Iron production and 90% of its coal. The territory it loses is very
- Many leaders resigned their post in protest to the signing of this treaty. They though the
cost was much to high.
- Germany immediately moved into the treaty it claimed and set-up authoritarian regime in
Ukraine especially. They began to encourage these individuals in Ukraine and Finland to
fight against the new Bolshevik State.
- The months that follow the signing of this treaty was filled with civil disorder across
Russia in what would become a civil war within Russia.
- This is the moment push the communists to be worried about the White Armies of the
Germans. They were worried that these armies would seek to rescue the former Tsar and
his family whom were under house arrest and restore them to the throne.
- The local Soviet in the rural mountains made a decision that was sanctioned by Lenin to
assassinate the royal family along with all of the servants whom worked for them.
- Their bodies were dumped in a well so their bodies couldn’t be buried which deterred
anyone from going to pay their homage.
- The Royal Family is no longer in the picture. The white armies supported by the
German’s and the RedArmy are fighting for what’s left of the RussianArmy.
- The Allies suffered from Russia’s sudden exist form the war and they were concerned that
Russia signed this treaty but were also within Russia.
- The Allies in addition to the central powers decided to support the white army because if
they would support the white army they could beat the Soviet Power and perhaps Russia
would be able to return to the war.
- The Bolsheviks were aware of the support for the White Army. Seeing the support for
these armies the Communists enhanced their war effort. They implemented military
conscription and strong-armed the former Tsarist Officers to join the Red Army. They
reconstituted the RussiaArmy. These forces were around 3M People.
- By the summer of 1920 the Red Army was strong enough to fight back and attack the
WhiteArmy. - WWI ends in 1918 when the Russia war is still going strong. When WWI Ends with
Hungary and the Austro-Hungary Empire disappears. The Russian’s scrap that treaty and
move back into these territories they had given up a few months earlier.
- With the withdrawal from the Russian Affairs the Red Army was in a stronger position
but it still faced some internal opposition.
- The White Army which were stilled aided by the Allies, some individual military leaders
are fighting autonomously in different areas of Russia specifically Siberia and there’s also
an army in the Baltic States made of the German’s that were left behind. Some of the
German’s that remained after the German defeat tried to make-up and army.
- This Civil War with the Red Army and these three forces. By the end of 1919 the Red
Army is able to beat the WhiteArmy. This didn’t end the entire conflict how ever.
- Other fires needed to be fixed. One of the major problems was Poland.
- Pieces are carved out of the different empires and Poland becomes independent. Newly
independent Poland tried to broaden its frontiers. And saw that this civil war in Russia
would be able to help Poland to expand its border beyond the boundaries given by the
treaty of Versaille.
- They wanted to drive the Red Army out of the Ukraine, out of the Baltic State’s and create
a Polish Federation.
- He didn’t want to make Poland bigger but also access to all these minerals and to gain
access to the sea.
- In the end the Red Army decided it was more important to focus on the internal affairs
then to place Soviet Government in Poland.
- In October 1920 Russia makes peace with Poland and Poland gets most of the land it
wanted namely Ukraine and Western Russia.
- The Poles succeed where the WhiteArmy did not.
- The Bolshevik victory over the White army were a combination of factors
o The White Army wasn’t a unified force. Nothing brought them together except for
the opposition to the Red Army. (Made up of royalists whom support the Tsar,
Leftists whom support the communist regime and individuals in between this
o The White Army and it’s supporters were often seen as dictatorial in their relations
with populations. Many historians explain the authoritarian ways they had which
failed to gain local support. The White Armies were largely on the peripheries of
Russia. As a result they never interacted with Russian’s which failed to gain local
o They didn’t have the support of the masses of the peasants. Overall the peasants
opposed the White’s because in the areas controlled by the White they tried to un-
do the land distribution done by the Bolsheviks.
o Foreigners supported them. The Allies supported them at first by the central
powers and then. They gained financial resources in this case but it cost them
political points. The Red Army could portray itself as the legitimate Russian Army
whereas France and the UK supported the WhiteArmy.
- The Civil War ends with a communist victory. This doesn't mean the country is on stable
grounds. Agricultural and Economies suffered because of this civil war. Famine spread
- On top of all the local problems there’s also a medical scare with influenza. - Russia had a great advantage in 1920 because Russia’s population began to expand. In
spite of all the Military losses Russia’s population is growing. This was importan