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A History of the Soviet Union by Peter Kenez

By Peter Kenez

An exam of political, social and cultural advancements within the Soviet Union. The e-book identifies the social tensions and political inconsistencies that spurred radical swap within the govt of Russia, from the flip of the century to the revolution of 1917. Kenez envisions that revolution as a quandary of authority that posed the query, 'Who shall govern Russia?' this query used to be resolved with the construction of the Soviet Union. Kenez lines the improvement of the Soviet Union from the Revolution, throughout the Twenties, the years of the recent financial guidelines and into the Stalinist order. He indicates how post-Stalin Soviet leaders struggled to discover how you can rule the rustic with out utilizing Stalin's tools but in addition with out overtly repudiating the prior, and to barter a relaxed yet antipathetic coexistence with the capitalist West. during this re-creation, he additionally examines the post-Soviet interval, tracing Russia's improvement as much as the current day.

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After long negotiations with the Soviet government, it was decided to allow them to travel to the Western front through Siberia, the Pacific, and the United States. The Czechs, however, never reached their destination, because while traveling through Siberia they started to fight the Bolsheviks. In May 1918 Bolshevik rule in Siberia was still so weak that fifty thousand Czechs could overthrow it. This totally unexpected development allowed the anti-Bolsheviks to establish themselves and organize.

It was the issues of land and peace which had brought down the provisional government, and Lenin was resolved to deal with these issues as decisively and expeditiously as possible. On the day after his victory he presented his decree on peace and land to the Congress of Soviets. The first one of these decrees was an appeal to all belligerent countries to commence negotiations for a just and democratic peace without indemnities or annexations. The second declared the land to be national property, but allowed peasants to cultivate it as their own.

Few understood that even taking all the lands of the nobility was not a long-term solution: given methods of cultivation in Russia, there was simply not enough land for everyone who wanted to cultivate it. Members of the government, of course, were well aware of the significance of the issue of land reform, and did not in principle oppose the idea. In practice, however, they did nothing. In the first place, carrying out land reform at a time of war, when millions of peasants were in the army, would have ended the effectiveness of the troops.

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