Evaluate the role of individuals in bringing about the changing influence of the Russian Communist Party, 1905-1945. – Jacob Marshall-Grint
In the period 1905 to 1945 there was three key individuals that caused significant change in the influence of the Russian Communist Party: Lenin, Stalin and the Tsar. The influence of the party came in two main forms, political and public, which all three leaders changed in different ways.
The most important individual in bringing about the change in influence is Vladimir Lenin, who brought about a sudden sharp rise in the party’s popularity. Following the 1917 October Revolution, Lenin became the leader of the Communist Party and greatly increased the party’s political influence with his ‘one party state’. Lenin’s creation of the Politburo in 1919, which was a group of eight high profile party members who influenced any decision being made, demonstrates the party’s increased political influence by showing their domination of governmental bodies. Public support of the party is obvious in the increase of RCP membership, March 1919 to March 1920, from 250,000 to 612,000. This may have been due mainly to Lenin retaining his power through the 1918 civil war. In 1921, Lenin introduced his New Economic Policy, aimed at gaining peace with the peasant class, which resulted in the ending of armed resistance to the communists. This support increased the Russian Communist Party’s (RCP) public influence greatly, backed in rural areas as well as urban working class districts. Due to all these factors, Lenin is the most important individual in changing the influence of the Russian communist party between 1905 and 1945.
However, Lenin’s contributions to the party would not of been possible if no for the actions Tsar Nicholas II. In 1905, the public support for the Tsarist regime was extremely low, in all classes and geographic locations, leading to a rapid expansion of the RSDLP (Russian Social Democratic Labor Party) and...
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