Flashcards in Civil War Deck (42):
Why did the Reds win the civil war? (5 factors)
Unity and Organisation
Where did Japanese forces occupy?
Where did Churchill send British forces?
When were all foreign armies withdrawn by?
What areas of Russia did the Reds hold?
The central area including
Why was it beneficial that the Bolsheviks moved their capital to Moscow?
It was at the hub of the railway network so it was easier to transport men and munitions to battle fronts
When was the Russian Civil war?
1918 - 1921
Why was it beneficial that the area of Russia the Bolsheviks held contained the main armament factories?
They could carry on producing war materials.
Much of the artillery, rifles and other military equipment of the old Russian army fell into Bolshevik hands
Why was it beneficial that the central area was heavily populated (more so than White held areas)?
Reds could conscript larger numbers to fight.
Red armies often vastly outnumbered the Whites.
Why was the Whites being scattered around the edges of the central area an issue? (3 reasons)
They were separated by large distances so communications were difficult (No telephone links - had to use officers on horseback to convey messages)
More difficult to move men and weapons
Harder to co-ordinate attacks of different White armies
How were the Reds better organised?
Had a single unified command structure
Who organised the Red Army into an 'effective fighting force'?
Who were better organised? Reds or Whites?
Why were the Whites unorganised?
Made up of different groups
Different aims and beliefs (couldn't agree if they were fighting for Monarchism, Republicanism or for the Constituent Assembly)
Split views on national minorities
Why was the Whites being unorganized an issue?
Hard to co-operate and impossible to develop a co-ordinated military strategy due to divisions
Why would the White leaders often not work together? Give an example.
Did not like or trust each other
E.g. Other generals suspicious of Kolchak's motives and intentions
Why was Trotsky a superb leader?
Brave - took his special forces by train to parts of the Front where fighting was fiercest
Inspirational - Able to rally men
What did Trotsky do in terms of Army Discipline?
Death penalty used frequently
(Unwilling peasant conscripts knew certain death lay before them if they retreated in battle - would be machine gunned by their own side)
What were the issues with the White leaders?
Several were cruel - treated men with contempt.
Reminded soldiers of worst aspects of Russian Army + Tsarist rule.
What were the effects of White leadership on soldiers?
Little natural warmth or support for White Leaders.
Many soldiers deserted.
What were the consequences of indiscipline and corruption in White Armies?
Uniforms and munitions supplied by foreign interventionist governments were sold on black market
Officers lives in brothels in a haze of cocaine and vodka
Why was support of peasants a crucial factor? Who did they support?
Peasants supplied the main body if soldiers for both sides.
But they had little love for either side - just as inclined to desert from Red as from White armies they had been conscripted into.
What did Lenin do to gain peasant support?
Lenin legitimized their right to the land - Peasants inclined to support Reds
What did the Whites do to lose peasant support?
Made it clear land would be restored to its former owners
What did Kolchak do to lose peasant support?
Gave estates to landlords who hadn't owned them before the revolution
Who else did the Whites lose the support of and why?
Nationalist groups (separatists) like Ukranians and Georgians who wanted more autonomy in their affairs or complete independence.
White leaders wanted to restore Russian Empire with pre-1917 borders - antagonised national groups
Why did Reds have core support of some workers and soldiers but not widespread support?
1) War Communism + the way they managed cities and food supply
Why did urban workers and peasants support the Reds?
Wanted to protect the gains if 1917. Reds seemed to offer them their chance of this
What were the Whites associated with that limited their support?
The old system of government
What was the benefit of foreign intervention for the Whites?
Brought them supplies and weapons
Why did foreign intervention fail?
1) Their attacks weren't co-ordinated- little co-operation between interventionists
2) No concerted attempt to unseat Bolshevik regime
3) Effort to co-operate with White armies failed
4) After a token display if aggression troops began to withdraw
5)Nations had different interests for intervention
How did the Bolsheviks use foreign intervention to their advantage?
Presented themselves as the defenders of Russia against foreign forces
Used this as propaganda
How did the Reds and Whites use propaganda?
Both used propaganda
Whites, particularly Denikin, Didn't see how valuable it was
Reds used imaginative, powerful images (Whites woukd take away land from peasants, Reds protecting Russia from foreign invaders working with Whites, Reds offered wonderful new society for workers and peasants)
How many men did the Reds have in 1919?
How many men did the Reds (Trotsky) have by 1920?
How many men did Yudenich have in his army?
How many officers did Denikin have in his army?
Never more than 100,000
What effect did Trotskys train have on the soldiers?
How did Trotsky ensure the loyalty of the former tsarist officers he brought back?
Held their families hostage
What was War Communism?
Policies adopted during 1st years of Communist rule.
Lenin introduced decree of nationalisation- established strong centralised control over all areas of production and distribution in areas under his control
How did War Communism help the Reds win the Civil War?
1) Rapid deterioration of economy spring 1918
2) Industry fell apart (workers incapable of running factories)
3) Shortages of raw materials and food - bread rations
4) Inflation - value of rouble collapsed
5) Industrial output decrease
6) Workers leaving cities
7) Peasants withheld resources
8) Food riots many cities early 1918