Bolshevik power grows Vladimir ilyich Lenin was an excellent speaker and a clear thinker, he held the Marxist view that communism could only come after a bourgeois revolution. On his journey back to Russia, Lenin sent ahead the aims for the party, the April Theses Withdraw from the war PG is the bourgeois revolution that must happen before the workers revolution; we must work for the workers revolution No cooperation with the PG Work towards transferring power to the soviets Work towards government by the people, not a parliament with no police or central bureaucracy All land to be owned by the state and run by peasants on communal farms All banks to become one state bank Industry to be controlled by soviets Party congress to be called the change the party programme, mainly concerning the war, the need to demand a ‘commune state’ A new international meeting (to agree these changes with Bolsheviks in all countries). On his arrival he made a speech to the Petrograd soviet, outlining the theses- they were not impressed The first PG ended, the 2nd (5th may 1917) had members from all main political groups except the Bolsheviks. People who once regarded all revolutionary groups as similar now saw that the Bolsheviks were the only ones that supported radical change PG introduced bread rationing in march In June 1917, Russian generals led another offensive that failed with more loses By Autumn 2 million soldiers had deserted Lenin made inspiring speeches with simple slogans ‘peace bread land’ and ‘all power to the soviets’ He and Leon Trotsky gave strong leadership that united the Bolsheviks 41 Bolsheviks criticising the PG and urging revolution They set up red guards of armed workers, by July there were 10,000 in Petrograd Lenin was worried that workers might rise up before the Bolsheviks were ready due to the unpopularity of the PG July days Another unplanned up rising People were reacting to war, bread rationing and the PG’s lack of reforms People chanting Bolshevik slogans The PG sent troops to clear the streets Trotsky and several other Bolshevik leaders were arrested but Lenin escaped. The Third PG After July days the PG reformed, led by Alexander Kerensky who had been in the government from the start and the only person who was a member of the Duma and Petrograd soviet. He chose Lavr Kornilov, a general known to be against the February revolution, to lead the army. Kornilov Revolt He pushed Kerensky to impose Martial Law and break the power of soviets. Kerensky could not decide whether he wanted the support of the soviets or Kornilov so he told kornilov to order his troops and advance on Petrograd. Then claiming Kornilov was leading an army coup, he armed the Red guards and sent them to stop him. Kornilov and 7,000 followers were arrested. Kerensky presented himself as the saviour Kerensky became less popular and people saw the Bolsheviks as the saviours. They won most seats in the Petrograd soviet election (31st august). Many workers now felt the Bolsheviks who had predicted a counter-revolutionary move, were the party of the people.
Bolshevik power grows