directed his efforts into seizing power and establishing a dictatorship of the workers. Marx’s last stage—freedom for all—never materialized.The Road to Civil WarFor the leaders of the Provisional Government, the preservation of the Russian state depended on the success of the military. Defeatby Germany could mean a return to the old order and restoration of the Romanov dynasty. Under pressure from the Allies, Russialaunched a new offensive in mid-June 1917. For two days the Russians advanced, but on the third, they were pushed back by aGerman counteroffensive.Alarmed by the German advance, the Provisional Government mobilized the First Machine-Gun Regiment, which comprised most ofthe pro-Bolshevik soldiers in the Petrograd Garrison. Accusing the government of using the German offensive as an excuse todisperse Bolshevik elements, the regiment resolved to overthrow the government if it continued with its “counterrevolutionary”order.Despite the regiment’s stand, the Bolshevik leaders were more cautious. On July 4, throngs of soldiers, workers, and sailors from theKronstadt naval base marched through the city in armed ranks. They massed in front of Bolshevik headquarters looking forinstructions—but at this crucial moment, Lenin lost his nerve. He gave no call for an uprising. The failed uprising, dubbed the “JulyDays,” was followed by a crackdown. Police stormed the Bolshevik headquarters. Hundreds of Bolsheviks were arrested, and Leninwent into exile again, this time in Finland.S U M M E R O F T H E I R D I S C O N T E N TThe July Days were three tumultuous days that initially began as peaceful demonstrations in Petrograd against the Provisional Government,headed by Prince Lvov. Workers and soldiers took to the streets on July 3, 1917, but on July 4 violence broke out. The Provisional Governmentcould not control the riots, the Petrograd Soviet did not step in, and the Bolsheviks would not endorse the revolt. Without a leader and a goal,the protest lost focus and momentum, but the fragile government had been damaged. Lvov resigned, and Aleksandr Kerensky became primeminister. He used this moment as an opportunity to discredit the Bolsheviks, by publicizing Lenin’s financial ties with Germany. As publicopinion turned against the Bolsheviks, many leaders—including Leon Trotsky—were jailed, but Lenin was able to escape to exile in Finland.Kerensky, the Provisional Government’s sole socialist, was now hailed as the person to reunite the country and halt the drift towardcivil war. He was the only politician with popular support yet also broadly acceptable to the military leaders and the bourgeoisie. Lvovresigned from office, and on July 8 Kerensky became prime minister.Kerensky’s tactics became more authoritarian after he took office. Kerensky passed new restrictions on public gatherings, restoredthe death penalty at the front, and resolved to restore military discipline.
1/19/2021From Tsar to U.S.S.R.: Russia's Chaotic Year of Revolution5/7The program of the new coalition government was no longer bound by soviet principles. The head of the army, General Kornilov,