What were the contributions of Lenin and Trotsky to the Bolshevik Revolution?
Key Terms:
Lenin
Leader of the Bolsheviks, strategist, in 1917. From 1870 to 1924.
Trotsky
Public voice of the Bolsheviks, chairman of Petrograd in 1917, killed by Stalin in 1940.
Bolsheviks
They are a party against the Tsar with basic communists beliefs such as: every one is equal, and there are no owners of land.Their leader was Lenin and they took over in November 1917. Their leader was Lenin.
Bolshevik Revolution
The Bolsheviks overthrew the Provisional Government on November 7th of 1917 along with the Petrograd Soviet of Workers and Soldiers Deputies . They took over the Winter palace and arrested the officials. There wasn't much opposition since the provisional government was disliked by most of the population of Russia.
1917.jpg

Russia had some troubled years, before, during, and after World War I. In 1917, Tsar Nicholas II was overthrown, and a new government took over. This government was called the Provisional Government. The officials were all made up of Mensheviks, the Provisional government only lasted eight months because the Bolsheviks took control. The Bolsheviks were a group who were against the Tsar, they considered themselves as professional revolutionaries, and their beliefs of government were based on the German philosopher Karl Marx. These were basic communism beliefs, such beliefs included that everybody was equal and there were no economic classes. The Bolsheviks had around 21 members in their central committee, and around 800,000 more supporters. The Bolsheviks at first were the Russian Social-Democratic Party along with the Mensheviks, until they split up, becuase they started disagreeing on things. Lenin became the leader of the Bolsheviks. The Bolsheviks were not so popular until close to the overthrow of the Tsar, but they were still more popular than the Provisional Government. Kerensky was one of the main officials, because of the unpopularity of the Provisional Government, there was an attempt to overthrow him by the army,he freed the Bolshevik prisoners who had been arrested in July due to protests. He freed them because he knew the army was supporting the Bolsheviks and then they would leave him alone, he should have thought better.

Russia had problems around 1917, Russia was still fighting in World War I and had lost numerous lives. The people wanted to back out, there were food shortages and the economy was falling apart. Peasants had low wages and terrible work and living conditions, and were tired of not being paid attention to, this also applied to the army, they did not want to fight anymore. That is when they began the group of Petrograd Soviet of Workers and Soldiers Deputies. This was a group made up of soldiers and workers, they were tired of not being considered, so they took matters into their own hands. Their chairman was Trotsky, and their contribution helped the Bolsheviks tremendously to overthrow the Provisional Government.

The night of 7th of November 1917 ( since Russia had a different calendar, it was November in Russia but October on the current calendar), the Bolsheviks along with Petrograd Soviet of Workers and Soldier Deputies stormed into the Winter Palace to overthrow the Provisional Government. They had seized railway stations, office bridges and the State Bank, this gave them advantage, since they had some property. The Bolsheviks' had advantages, they had supporters in the right places, the army and the sailors supported them, and due to the unpopularity of the Provisional Government they took over without much opposition. An announcement was made by the Petrograd Soviet the day after they seized control.
The Announcement:
"The Provisional Government has been overthrown the cause for which the people fought has been made safe: the immediate proposal of a democratic peace, the end of land owners right, workers control over the production, the creation of a Soviet government. Long live the revolution of workers, soldiers and peasants”
Proclamation of the Petrograd Soviet
8th November 1917

The peasants, workers and soldiers supported the Bolsheviks because they had promised what the Tsar never managed to act upon, and for them it was a good choice. They would all be equal, and share the same things, they could have more control over their lives and not let the wealthy have control over them. To have successfully carried out the revolution, two people were necessary.


Vladimir Lenin
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Vladimir Lenin was born in 1870, and his real name was Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov. In 1887, his brother was hanged for opposing against the Tsar. Later, he began to plot against the Tsar until he was exiled to Siberia for three years, from 1897 to 1900. Lenin was the one who first started the Bolsheviks after the split with the Mensheviks, he was the one who organized the strategy behind the attacks or the talks that the Bolsheviks made. He was the one who had the most power among the Bolsheviks. He led the October Revolution in 1917. Lenin was the one behind the scenes, like in a play, he made everything work.
Leon Trotsky
Leon_Trotsky.jpg
Leon Trotsky was born in 1879, he was exiled to Siberia in 1900, and met Lenin in London in 1902. He was first in the Menshevik party but then joined the Bolsheviks. Leon was the one who spoke for the Bolsheviks providing examples in his speeches to prove his arguments. He would give speeches in front of enormous crowds at night, and many listening to him. Before the Bolsheviks took over, Trotsky's speeches really came through, and he got support from more people. Other than that, he was the chairman of the Petrograd Deputies, the organization supporter the Bolsheviks and fought along them to overthrow the Provisional Government
Both of these leaders were the had the main influence of the take over, while Lenin made the strategies and plan of attacks Trotsky was the public voice. Both these leaders had outstanding personalities which were very liked by the public, these leaders shone from everybody else, and people believed they could solve the situation in Russia that they had at that period.


After Taking Control:
After the Bolsheviks took control, peasants, workers and soldiers thought it would benefit them, and the country would rise back, however they discovered it was not much different. Under communist beliefs, many restrictions were implemented. There was no freedom of press, unless it was benefiting the government. A secret police was established that would take out any opposition, people were not allowed to oppose Lenin and the other Bolsheviks. Finally, from 1918 a civil war broke out, it lasted until 1921, and the Bolsheviks won once again, and Lenin continued to rule Russia.

Video:
http/www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofWYQh0dFWA

Bloom Questions:
1.Who was Vladimir Lenin? (Remembering)
2.What was the main idea of the Bolshevik Revolution? (Understanding)
3.What facts would you select to show that the Provisional Government was not liked by most people? (Applying)
4.Why do you think that Kerensky turned to the Bolsheviks when the army tried to overthrow him? (Analyzing)
5.What is your opinion of the choice that Kerensky made? (Evaluating)
6.Could you predict the outcome of the Bolsheviks supporters if Trotsky had not been the public voice? (Creating)

Bloom Questions-Answers

1.Vladimir Lenin was the leader of the Bolsheviks and the strategist
2.To overthrow the Provisional government and to establish a “democratic government” (everyone is equal)
3.The army tried to overthrow a minister and the Bolsheviks were not popular among most, but more than the Provisional Government
4.Kerensky knew that the Bolsheviks were supported by the army, and then that way they would leave the Provisional Government alone
5.It does make sense that he want to protect himself but he should have thought that the Bolsheviks would gain power from such freedom and would decide to strike
6. Trotsky was the main public voice making speeches to full crowds most nights, he had facts to prove his opinions and that made him very convincing.

Challenging Question:
To what extent was Lenin's and Trotsky contribution essential to the success of the Bolshevik Revolution?

The contribution of Lenin and Trotsky to the Bolshevik was to a great extent. Both of these man had outstanding personalities that influenced the public. Although, they weren't supported by many people, Lenin and Trotsky continued on their plans without surrendering. Lenin was essential as he was the leader of the Bolsheviks and the strategist behind the take over. Lenin planned the entire strategy, the take over of railway stations and the banks. Later, also in the Winter Palace. He was the person behind the scenes of play, without him the Bolsheviks would have never ruled. Even though Lenin was the smart strategist behind everything ,the Bolsheviks had a public speaker, and that was the contribution of Trotsky, he was the person who advertised the party. He was the public voice, informing people and making persuasive speeches describing the situation, providing examples and giving solutions by their party. Trotsky was one of the chairman in Petrograd Soviet Wokers and Soldier Deputies, these soldiers were the ones who helped the Bolsheviks take over the Provisional Government. They both contributed tremendously without Lenin there would not have been the group Bolsheviks, and without the public voice being Trotsky the Bolsheviks would not have had enough supporters to carry out their take over.However, the take over would not have carried out without the Petrograd Soviet of Workers and Soldiers Deputies and the unpopularity of the Provisional Government.



Russia and the USSR
Unit Two- The Rise of Communism
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