Was World War One Responsible for Nicholas Ii's Downfall?

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Emily Hawkins
How far do you agree that Nicholas II’s downfall was caused by World War 1?

1914 was a devastating year for many countries of the world, as world war one began to take full effect. But as world war one shook the world; it began to question Nicholas II’s ability to rule Russia. In this essay i will discuss the extent of world war one’s responsibility in Nicholas II’s downfall, and the extent of other contributing factors. I will argue that Nicholas II’s own traits as a leader were the main reason for his downfall. On the one hand, world war one had a huge impact on the Tsar and his country. Firstly, the cost of the war was placing a huge strain on Russia’s economy. Taxes increased hugely and the cost of living rose by 300%, so in order to try and help the economy through the struggling times of world war one, the government printed more money, making all money worthless. The people of Russia were now struggling even more than they were before the war had begun. Secondly, the Germans were forcing the Russians to retreat and they were therefore losing a lot of land. The impact of the battle of Tannenburg, where 30,000 troops were killed and 95,000 captured had a huge impact on the army’s moral, and by the end of 1916, 2 million soldiers had left the army. The commander in chief shot himself because of how bad the country and the army were doing, and soon after, the Tsar himself took on the role of commander in chief, although he lacked ability and knowledge. Also, the military had a lack of resources, in each regiment in the army; there was one gun per three people; the Tsar was blamed for many of the military downfalls, and this was one of them. The Russian transport system was also facing serious problems, and the ammunitions being made in the factories weren’t getting to the front line. Thirdly, world war one was causing huge food shortages; in Moscow in 1914, Russia was receiving 2200 wagons of grain and by Christmas 1916, the number of...
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