Why did the Bolsheviks appeal to the people of Russia in 1917?
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The Bolsheviks appealed to the people of Russia in 1917 mainly because Russian society craved change. The tsar was now a part of the past and Russian society wanted to try something new. This is mainly why the Bolshevik party appealed to the people of Russia in 1917.
The initial triumph of the Bolshevik Revolution at the end of October, 1917 did not mean that the entire population of Russia had been converted to Bolshevism. Leninwas aware of this. To gather national support, Lenin resorted to slogans for the masses. The most important of them was “Bread, Land, Peace and All Power to the Soviets.” Was this enough? The Russian people were more anti-Bolshevik than Lenin would have liked. The tsar was gone and a revolution had taken the nation by storm. Were the Bolsheviks now in control?
October symbolized a Bolshevik triumph. But what this also meant was that any hope for a liberal democratic order was now impossible. Late in November of 1917, an agreement was reached with the left wing SRs and peace negotiations were conducted with the Germans. Keep in mind, all the events surrounding 1917 must be seen within the context of the Great War. As far as the Bolsheviks were concerned, the revolution was over. As far as Lenin was concerned, he was in power. The Russian state, however, was in a state of decomposition.. Lenin had no use for a parliament, regardless of whether it was elected democratically or not. He considered it “inferior” to the Soviets of which the Petrograd Soviet under the leadership of Trotsky was the model. But now, immediately after the October Revolution, Lenin was compelled to hold elections.
The popular slogans of “Bread, Land and Peace” were what Russian society wanted to hear.How could such basic demands become a call for the overthrow of the ruling classes and usher in the most radical reconstruction of society ever attempted? Russia’s people desperately needed bread, peace and land. But capitalism’s need to expand its markets compelled the bosses and landlords to continue the war. The hungry and suffering masses learned that their needs could only be realized by overthrowing capitalist rule. At each step, the communists protested alongside the workers, propagandized in the soviets and agitated among peasant-soldiers at the front
When troops led by czarist general Kornilov threatened to restore the monarchy in August 1917, it was the Bolsheviks–not the capitalist provisional government–that organized workers and soldiers to defend their democratic gains.In November, the communists organized the insurrection that overthrew the provisional government. The soviets, with a Bolshevik majority, seized power.Companies of soldiers deserted the old army. Workers occupied factories. Peasants drove out the landlords.
The “Bread” stood for the need to feed the growing population of Petrograd, the word “Peace” became very powerful after the failure of Kerensky’s June offensive and the threat of the German naval force to Petrograd. The “Land” was for: in the countryside where there was a widespread breakdown of law and order as peasants took control of their land from the aristocratic landlords who they worked for. The “All Power to the Soviets” would give control of the government to the leaders of the soldiers, factory workers and peasants.
Lenin was planning to take control of the government, however a mutiny by some soldiers over food shortages in Petrograd encouraged him to make the attempt earlier than he wanted to. Then in July, the Bolsheviks under the leadership of Lenin and Trotsky tried to seize power in Petrograd but Kerensky’s, (now Prime Minster), loyal troops defeated them.
These are the main reasons that the Bolsheviks appealed to the people of Russia in 1917.