Why did the russian tsarist regime survive until 1917?

The tsarist regime, also referred to as the Russian political system, involved the repression of civil liberties, intellectual freedom and human rights in general. The regime was against any change in the country and frequently displayed their attitude in violent demonstrations and brutal massacres. The tsarist government faced opposition from many different social classes and occupational groupings, however it wasn’t until1917 that it was overthrown. The regime survived until then due to the relative disunity among revolutionaries, clever government tactics, and the support of crucial groups of the population. It was the combination of these advantages that kept the tsarist regime ruling successfully up until 1917. The factor responsible mostly for the survival of the tsarist regime was the relative sense of disunity amongst the revolutionaries. There were many groups aiming to revolutionise Russia at the time and this presented a problem in itself: no one wanted to work together. Some of the revolutionary groups included the Socialist Revolutionary (SR), and born from the Russian Marxists, who formed the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party (RSDLP) was the Bolsheviks and Mensheviks. Another main group were the Constitutional Democrats, also known as the Cadets, made up primarily of the educated and propertied classes. Initially, regardless of their individual tactics, all these groups aimed to replace tsarism with a democratic republic that would in turn ‘ modernise’ Russia. Eventually however, their unifying goal was not enough to remain in accord and the political parties split. Each of the groups was suffered greatly due to lack of organisation and inadequate leadership. The people had a tendency to react spontaneously, launching strikes and riots with no forewarning. These became a burden for party leaders, as it gave no opportunity to exercise controlled effectiveness. This problem was mostly due to the disunity amongst the revolutionists and all sought varying demands. This proved to be an enormous advantage for the tsarist regime, as the revolutionaries posed little threat while they were all working in disunity and disarray; therefore creating a means of survival for the ruling government. A further reason the tsarist regime was able to survive until 1917 was because of government tactics. The regime wavered between sever repression and political concession towards the Russian citizens, depending on the actions of their revolutionaries. In 1905, the tsarist regime felt sufficiently threatened to offer a variety of concessions, which included an expansion of civil liberties and the creation of and elected legislative body called the Duma. This new body, while issued with much reluctance from the tsar, had very limited powers but temporarily raised the hopes of the Russians. The Duma was cleverly used by the regime to promote further disunity among the revolutionary groups. Over time, the government introduced the Duma and several other acts such as the October Manifesto, the temporary liberalisation of censorship, as well as vague suggestions of gradual ‘ unlocking of land’. The acts of the regime appeared genuine to all, however they were strategically placed in accordance to opposition in order to diffuse revolutionary activity through the expectations of future reforms. It can be seen clearly that those involved in the tsarist regime were clever in their thinking and even used their opposition’s actions for their own overall benefit; certainly this helped them to survive until 1917. Another reason the tsarist regime survived until 1917 was because they had the continued support of crucial sections of the Russian population. The government had a lot of contacts in various counter-revolutionary forces and this advantage was evidently utilised. From professors to journalists to civil servants, many had allegiances with the regime and most were corrupt. In addition, the tsarist regime also had the complete loyalty of the Russian military. Obviously this was a great advantage for the tsarist regime and helped considerable in maintaining its survival until 1917. It is quite clear to see that without the advantages that the tsarist regime had, it surely would not have survived until 1917 as it did. Some of the advantages included the relative disunity among revolutionaries, clever government tactics, and the support of crucial groups of the population. The ruling tsar was successful for a time, however after the Great War, many became dissatisfied with the government, and a massive uprising of the revolutionists led the way for the overthrow of the tsar regime in 1917. Bibliography http://encarta. msn. com/text_761569348__2/Russian_Revolutions_of_1917. html The Spirit Of Change – Russia In Revolution. Margot Morcombe and Mark Fielding McGraw Hill Sydney 2000