There Is Such a Party! April to July 1917
The February Revolution span the kaleidoscope of Russia’s politics, jolting the alliances and rivalries among the parties, and politicians gained a freedom of choice unrestricted by the Romanov monarchy. Lenin’s April Theses were the acme of free will. Yet no political leader, not even Lenin, could escape the constraints of circumstance in their entirety. Each had to take the measure of terrifyingly exigent pressures: the Eastern front, economic dislocation, and popular discontent. Parties coped by modifying their physiognomies, and the changes were by no means random occurrences. Monarchism for a time was defunct as a political force.1 The possibilities for a right-wing military dictatorship were as yet limited by the destruction of the old order in the armed forces. So it came about that the Kadets, who had traditionally advocated parliamentary democracy and universal civic liberties, were the nearest party to the righthand pole of the political spectrum with the slightest chance of holding power.
KeywordsPolitical Life Central Committee Mass Organisation Conditional Support Party Committee
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