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Imperial Russia Leaders CCOT

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Jesus Perales
Miss Gracy K.
17 de diciembre de 2014

CCOT RUSSIA

Economics and Politics, Nicholas II-Stalin.
Since the ruling of the Russian Tsars government ended many changes started to happen in the Russian government style, altough the Tsars era ended their customs and philosophies remain in the roots, leading to a continuity of the government method since then.

As we know The Russian empire under the czar (or царь in Russian) was the absolute ruler of the country. Depending on the emperor, that power was distributed differently with some allowing nobles more direct control over their own oblasts
(states). One such emperor was Nicholas I who freed the serfs and created a system of advisers and administrators. Others, such as Alexander III and Nicholas II who followed him thought that power was a divine right and should be the absolute will and whim of the emperor. The elected government that Nicholas II created under pressure was largely ineffective and weak. Czars succeeded one another upon their predecessor's death and the lineage was kept within the royal family.
Imperial Russia lasted from 1721 to 1917.

The Soviet Union was very much alike Imperial Russia in that the rulers
(especially Stalin) had absolute power. From Lenin onward, the Soviet leaders'

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will was followed very closely by the Supreme Soviet and the Communist Party.
This isn't to say there weren't disagreements. After Lenin's death, several leaders shone among the ranks as possible successors. Through political intelligence and violence, Stalin had all executed or exiled, and he assumed power. Other Soviet leaders never had the same amount of power, but still dictated much of what happened in the Soviet Union. Succession was determined by party loyalty and brute force.

The Soviet government was monstrously large and “bulky”. Our bureaucracy doesn't even compare to the size and scope of how much the Soviet government ran the lives of everyday people. In this way it was different from
Imperial Russia. The czars were largely unconcerned with the lives of the everyday peasant in the Ukraine, but Soviet leaders wanted to make a communist paradise. In order to make this, the government had to be incredibly large and concerned with every person. In the cities especially, Soviet programs were designed and implemented extensively.

Soviet important values were very different from those of Imperial Russia. The czars believed in their own divine right so heavily supported the Russian
Orthodox church while the Soviets were officially atheist. This idea really didn't change however. Instead of giving devotion to God, the Russian people were

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directed to give their attention to the Communist State and the future of communism. Lenin in particular was almost deified.

Really, Imperial Russia and the Soviet Union were alike in that many of the policies of the Soviet Union were just old ideas directed toward new goals.
However, many differences also existed creating the radical break seen in
Russian history and felt in Russia today. This break has been repeated in Russia now with the passage of Communism and with the Russian raid into democracy.

The most important thing to note is that Alexander II, Alexander III and
Nicholas II continuously enforced autocracy, there was never any question of the Tsars ultimate and supreme power - Orthodoxy,
Autocracy, Nationalism was continuously held. Even though Alexander
II embarked on a reforming agenda after Russia's depressing performance in the Crimean War and introduced a number of 'liberal' reforms like the Zemstva as a resuslt, after the the first attempt on his life in 1866 - he reverted back to adhering very strongly to autocracy(Trial of the 50 etc.). Alexander III felt the need to enforce autocracy significantly after his fathers assassination in 1881. He reversed many of his fathers reforms and again used repression in the

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same fashion. The 'Peoples Will' were particularly targeted, the heads of the group were all executed . This fortifying of autocracy was justified by his belief that it was his father Duty - aka. it was for the benefit of the
Russian people. In a similar fashion to Alexander II, Nicholas II introduced a number of 'liberal' and constitutional reforms like the Duma in 1905. However, these were forced upon the Tsar because of contextual factors like the loss of faith in autocracy/Tsarism because of the Russo-Japanese war and similarly like with the reforms resulting from the Crimea, they were certainly not introduced with the intention to relinquish any autocratic power. The Fundamental laws of 1906 ensured this, in-which again like Alex III manifesto in 1881, the Tsar reiterated the need for the upkeep of autocracy & that the Tsar is a 'supreme ruler'.
Thus, even though there were moments when it seemed the Tsar was parting with some of his autocratic power, the society was always going to be subject to the ultimate authority of the Tsar.

Nicholas's major reforms were as a direct result of the 1905 Revolution.

Lenin instituted many reforms, from the structure of the army to the ownership of land. The main reforms were:
Reformed the political system of the country - creating a socialist state.

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Reformed land ownership, previously the peasants held land from aristocratic landlords - Lenin gave the peasants the land.
Industry. Factories were either owned by the state - like the huge armaments and textiles factories in Petrograd or owned by very rich (often aristocratic) men - Lenin nationalized industry, i.e. the state took ownership of the factories.

Labour conditions were improved with working hours limited to a maximum of eight hours a day, and forty hours a week. The capitalists who had always owned the factories and farms had been profit driven, neglecting basic human rights of workers. Exploitative working conditions existed with no work breaks or time off. Children born to parents from the working class were not allowed to attend schools. They began working at an early age, and before 1921, child exploitation and abuse in
Russian factories and industrial areas was common. Many women also suffered miscarriages due to insufficient health facilities. Under the new rule factories were placed under the control of elected committees of workers. Nowadays this has been abolished

Women were not allowed to occupy senior positions, as these were reserved for men. Women had not been allowed to educate themselves during the rule of the
Tsar, and Lenin wanted to see this changed by having both women and men attending classes together and sharing the same philosophy.

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During this reform period the Bolshevik Party changed its name to the Communist
Party, and established measures to restrict political opposition. All newspapers that were not state controlled were banned to minimise criticism of government policies.

The Civil War caused great hardship, especially in the cities - the Bolsheviks brought in the policy of War Communism. This was requisitioning grain from the peasants - often at gunpoint.
When the Civil War was more or less over Lenin brought in a new policy to kick-start the economy - the New Economic Policy. This allowed small enterprises to open up and for people to sell goods on the open market

War communism was especially unpopular among peasant farmers and overwhelming opposition to Lenin's economic policy forced him to change it. Lenin wanted to regain the trust of the peasants and established the New Economic
Policy. Farmers were now allowed to sell their additional products on the open market, but land still remained the property of the state. All the products were taxed and the state determined all prices.

Stalin believed that a strong economy needed a strong country. He felt that industrialization was the key to achieving this strength and was convinced that the peasant class needed to accept socialism. Stalin preferred the economic policies of
War Communism. He felt Lenin's New Economic Policy (NEP) had diluted socialism, but he was nervous about losing the support of the peasants who benefited from

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the NEP and wanted to unite them with the working class. The launch of the first
Five-Year Plan and a collectivization drive dramatically reversed the NEP model.

Propaganda was used to inspire workers and to stress the significance of working together for a better future. Emphasis was also placed on the development of heavy industries, steel and electrical plants. Transportation systems, scientists and engineering skills from the West were needed for Russia to reach the same level as other industrialized countries in Europe. Tools and machinery were desperately needed. To pay for this help and equipment they needed ready money, as the capitalist countries were wary of granting credit to Communist Russia. Stalin believed that attention to education was necessary in order to have a skilled industrial labour force. Improvements in transport would help move raw materials, manufactured products and agricultural produce. In order to reach the required targets, new railway lines were built and the old ones upgraded.

A new agricultural system was introduced, bringing together numerous small farms into collective and state agriculture. Peasant and wealthy farmers who refused to sell their extra products were heavily taxed. Wealthy farmers responded angrily by destroying their crops and killing their livestock. Stalin punished them by destroying their homes and deporting most of them to Siberia.

Private traders and wealthy farmers were progressively taxed until they could no longer afford to run their businesses. In December 1932, the First Five-Year Plan was completed. Rapid industrialization had been achieved, although the quality

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was poor compared to western countries. Many basic industries were established and new industries such as plastics and synthetic rubber also came into being. The foundations had been laid for the development of Russia as a major industrial and political world power.

Thousands of new schools were built to provide basic education for all children and education was made compulsory. Adult literacy classes, which were also emphasized, reduced the rate of illiteracy rate from 50% in 1924 to 20% in 1939.
Education was structured around mechanical and engineering lessons.


Stalin claimed to continue Lenin’s policies,this was necessary for any postrevolutionary leader,one of the justifications for the purge of Trotsky and his followers was that they departed from Lenin’s teachings meaning Stalin gained power by claiming to be Lenin’s successor although candidates can explain how he manipulated himself into power. The use of propaganda to show he was the rightful heir to Lenin. Stalin tricked Trotsky and made him missed funeral. Chief mourner of
Lenin’s funeral.Made alliances to remove opposition (refer to the rise of power)

Stalin cancelled the features of NEP that were associated with private enterprise although Lenin justified the NEP as a necessary temporary measure. The policies of collectivisation went much further than Lenin advocated though it provided food surpluses to get foreign exchange and support further industrial growth, this forced policy led to liquidation of kulaks and extend socialism to the countryside. The use of machinery reduced the labour requirements and encouraged peasants to work in industrial plants
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Stalin’s purges were different from the methods used by Lenin. Their scale was greater although Lenin had insisted on one-party government and the dominance of the Bolsheviks.The Show trials were regularly carried out c.f. Lenin. Stalin Mistrusted everyone to get rid of class enemies in all disguises

Stalin had few ideas of his own, he merely applied those of Lenin. This was stressed by the Soviet school under Stalin to justify policy decisions The rooting out of class enemies: there is similarity between the aims of Lenin during the civil war (to remove the old order) and those of Stalin under the first FYP (aimed at removing Nepmen and Kulaks). The policies of the 1930s were driven by attitudes shaped by the civil war under Lenin. This has been emphasised by revisionist historians. The party should govern in the interests of the working class this was the stated aim of both leaders.The growth of the bureaucracy: the apparatus of the party and state had grown under Lenin, Stalin merely built on this.
The use of terror: Lenin had purged political opponents as well as members of his own party. This provided a precedent for Stalin. Stalinism grew out of the authoritarian tendencies of Bolshevism which were evident before Stalin. Thus there is continuity with Lenin. The Bolshevik Revolution was therefore the original sin. This view has been stressed by the liberal school who see all aspects of communism in a negative light. Stalin merely highlighted the brutal nature of the Soviet regime.
Russian writers since the fall of communism in 1991 have often come to this conclusion. Stalin was one of a long line of Russian despotic leaders. Thus the continuity is not just with Lenin but with long-term trends in Russian history which were also responsible for Ivan the Terrible and Peter the Great.This view has been put forward by ‘Russia’s Revenge’ school in the West which sees Stalin as a ‘Red
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Tsar’ .Stalin’s economic policies marked a break from the NEP. The emphasis was now on coercion rather than compromise. In this sense Stalin broke away from the policies of Lenin. This was emphasised by Soviet writers in the period of Glasnost.
Supporters of the more conciliatory policies of Bukharin also emphasise this change away from the NEP The revolution was in danger of running into the ground by
1928. The policies of Stalin brought about real changes which saved the revolution.The determinist school emphasises this factor. Lenin was tolerant – within limits – of debate within the party; Stalin was intolerant of any dissent.

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