The Russian Civil War




Once a majority of the Russian population became violent and opposed the government of Bolshevik over the peace agreement of Brest-Litovsk signed between Communist Russia and Germany. The Bolshevik regime has been threatened by the white armies who have come out from the opposition. Other nations and groups present played a vital role as they were only a single dimension of this civil war. As the White armies were unable to gather support from the masses their cause has resulted in a great defeat. Lack of Patriotism, Internal Division and the Geography had played a significant role in their defeat.

White armies had fought the battle with the Red army’s on different fronts which includes the North West, East and the South region. General Iudenich, General Denikin and Admiral Kolchak were leading these battle groups respectively. Kolchak was the head of the whole movement as all of the allies considers him as Leader. The White armies were quite independent in terms of practice. The United States of America, Japan, France, and the Great Britain were the closest allies of the White armies. This support from the Western side of the world has helped the White’s to become a dominant opposition against the communist regime. All these three armies have a total number of 250,000 troops having a very cohesive approach with clear command and control structure. This organized structure of the White armies’ side imposed a very aggressive impression on their Red adversaries. The political motive of fighting had also contributed to the whites. These actions were taken in order to return Russia to its old conservative rule and also to restore the provincial government. To overthrow the Bolsheviks, the white side was quite large in numbers, well equipped, more organized and supported.

Both the White armies and the Red ones needed a great amount of supplies and other conscripts of their campaigns. For this purpose, the possible source was the rural part of Russia, but grain and conscription were quite far from reach because of their lack of access. Many villages and other rural areas were facing starvation which led them towards the killing of officials and requisition squads.  These massive killings had outbreaks of even greater violence outward to rebellions; measures were taken to stop the rebelling villages in order to halt the disturbance spreading. In the mid 1919 there were about 344 peasants and by 1920s, it had spread far and wide. These armies had failed in becoming a national force which was in thousands of strong numbers who were then able to cut supply lines and even destroy resource bases as well.  There were hundreds of peasants who were spread to large areas of the two sided territories throughout the civil war.

During the civil war there were about eleven countries that have attacked Russia. These attacking countries were not coordinating their attacking activities with other countries, they were only focusing to achieve their own objectives. The ex-prisoners of war belonging to the Czechoslovak legion had started with railway war in Siberia as their own civil war. Instead of choosing disarmament, the legions pushed forward and conquered a huge territory of the Trans-Siberian railways, this area then became the base of Kolchak's government in the East region. The Czechs had minimized their role in the war after losing their interest after world war one. Murmansk and Archangel Region saw a weak government ruled by the whites in the North region, when it was invaded by the French and British forces. From the Pacific side of Russia; Japan and along with the United States and Canada also invaded but to a lesser extent. The Japanese were also able to set up a White government under the leadership of Gregory Semenov and had also occupied the Vladivostok in October 1922. All of the allies were able to intervene during the Civil war for achieving their own interests and also in support of the white opposition.

During the civil war, many areas of the former Tsarist Empire tried to gain freedom. Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, all these three Baltic states were able to gain independence along with Poland and Finland. None of these countries could escape this civil war as they were all playing their part. Poland was successful in drawing a border between the two nations while fighting a war against the Soviet Russia from 1920 to 1921. During the civil war, many disputes arise and most of the newly formed states gave limited support to either the Reds or the Whites. In the North Western battle, Estonia found itself pressed in between Reds and Whites over territory violation. Many of the older parts of the Russian Empire also found itself stuck in difficulties of the Civil war.

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